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Home security systems deter intruders, plain and simple. In fact, its been reported that 60% percent of burglars will simply avoid houses with home security cameras. Thankfully, putting together a home security system is more affordable than ever. Many home security cameras and video doorbells cost under $100, but can significantly up your home’s security and protect you and your valuables.
So, how come everybody doesn’t have a security camera at home? Well, there’s one pesky inconvenience that often deters people from getting or using a home security system: subscriptions. Many of the home security cameras and video doorbells keep features within their subscription. Even though subscriptions are often relatively cheap — generally $3, $6 or $10 a month — they add up over time and can be just annoying enough to keep people from getting a security camera.
So if you’re looking for the best security cameras that don’t require a subscription, keep reading!
Camera Features Without Subscriptions
If you think the best security cameras that don’t require a subscription are going to be awful (or worse, pointless), don’t fret. We’ve found a slew of options that are worth their purchase price. And to help you get a better understanding of what you can still do with a security camera that doesn’t require a subscription, take a look at our quick list below.
- Local Video Storage – Although you might not have access to cloud recording, many of the cameras below offer local video storage that you can access.
- Smart AI – Even without a subscription, a few of the cameras below have AI to recognize when people or small animals are simply passing by so they don’t send you unnecessary alerts.
- Live Video Streaming – Wondering what your pet is doing while you’re at work? You can check in on a live stream, and if your camera has two-way communication (many of them do) you can even say hi to your furry best friend at home.
The Best Security Cameras Without a Subscription
All that being said, you don’t need a subscription to have a useful home security camera that will keep your home safe and bring you into that 60% percentile to hopefully deter burglars. Below are our picks for the best security cameras that provide the most features and without a subscription.
1. Eufy SoloCam E40
When you consider that this security camera works with both Alexa and Google Assistant, is incredibly easy to install and comes in about $50 cheaper than the Nest Cam Battery, it’s a great choice for your security camera that doesn’t require a subscription. It holds 60 days’ worth of video footage locally and is smart enough to not alert you when people are near the camera — the neighborhood cat passing by won’t trigger a notification. It’s weatherproof and wireless so you can place this security camera virtually anywhere in or around your home.
2. Google Nest Cam Battery
This camera is packed with features without needing a subscription. It is smart enough to recognize people, vehicles and animals so you know what is triggering notifications without needing to look at the video. You also get three hours of video storage you can access. The video quality is sharp at 1080p and you can place it virtually anywhere thanks to its wireless design.
3. Arlo Ultra 2
The 4K video quality is nothing short of impressive on the Arlo Ultra 2. And with an integrated spotlight to light up the dark and provide crystal clear video at night as well, you get impressive video quality regardless of whether the sun is up or down. You will need to connect to an Arlo SmartHub to get local storage if you want to avoid a subscription. Even without a subscription, the six-month battery life, video quality and wide-angle alone make this an impressive camera.
4. Wyze Cam v3
BEST BUDGET PICK
Considering you get free 14-day rolling cloud storage as well as the ability to record locally via MicroUSB, and all for sub $40, this camera is easily one of the best security cameras that don’t require a subscription. It captures video in 1080p both during the day and night. The free recordings are limited to 12-second clips, but that’s all you really need to see what is triggering a notification. If you’re on a budget, this is a smart pick.
5. Blink Video Doorbell
VALUE VIDEO DOORBELL
We like the Blink Video Doorbell because you get a lot without emptying your wallet. You get out of paying fees for video with a Sync Module 2 — a hub that stores video that you can pull via USB. Beyond the local video storage, the two-way communication is clear and it can work both wirelessly or it can be wired to your existing doorbell wires for continuous power. It’s versatile all without the need for a subscription.
6. Kasa Smart 2K Security Camera
When you combine great video quality, the ability to cover a lot thanks to 360-degree rotation and 114-degree tilt, and both Alexa and Google Assistant compatibility, you have the makings of a solid security camera. What also makes it appealing is it can store video locally, making it a great choice for a security camera without a subscription.
7. Blink Outdoor
GREAT BATTERY LIFE
Blink provides budget home security cameras without a subscription. Much like the Blink Video Doorbell, you’ll want to pair this with the Sync Module 2 to gain access to local recordings, though. Aside from recording, the weatherproof camera allows it to work well outside but can also be used inside if you desired. The 1080p video quality is crystal clear and the battery life can last up to two years.
8. Wyze Video Doorbell Pro
EASY TO INSTALL AND USE
This video doorbell is easy to install, set up and get to recording video. It is smart enough to recognize and differentiate between people, animals and vehicles, and even has package detection. The head-to-toe video allows you to see your entire porch and the two-way communication works and sounds great. It comes with a chime that has 24 different doorbell sounds to choose from. The Wyze Video Doorbell Pro is not only easy to install, but also a great value pick as well.
9. Reolink Indoor Security Camera
PAN AND TILT
This indoor security camera can cover a lot of range thanks to its ability to tilt and rotate. It can tilt up to 50 degrees and can rotate 355 degrees, covering an entire room. It features two-way communication and has excellent video quality both during the day and at night. Plus, it’s affordable to boot.
10. Google Nest Doorbell
SPLURGE VIDEO DOORBELL
Even without a subscription, you get three hours of free recording history that you can access at any time. The 3:4 video aspect ratio provides a solid range so you can see more of your front porch and it has smart AI to recognize people, animals and vehicles. It can run on battery power or be wired to your existing doorbell so you don’t have to worry about swapping out batteries every so often.
The Benefits of Subscriptions
Though we certainly advocate for getting the best deal possible, especially if you don’t really need the benefits that come along with a subscription, you may find a security camera with a subscription is more beneficial for you. To help you make the best decision, take a look at our little list of benefits of subscriptions below! And if you find that subscriptions are indeed more your thing, be sure to check out our list of the best security cameras.
- Fees are relatively inexpensive – Think about all of your streaming services you have a subscription for. Virtually all of them are more expensive than $3, yet none of them protect your home.
- Cloud recording storage – For cameras that don’t have local recording, a subscription to see all of your recordings can be a game-changer, especially in the event you need to share video with local law enforcement. Cloud recording storage provides anytime access to your camera’s video recordings and can often store video for long periods of time.
- Additional features – Some cameras have added notification benefits such as facial recognition or differentiating between people, pets, vehicles and have package detection when you pay a fee.
- Professional monitoring – Some services such as Ring (which you won’t find below because their cameras are much better with a subscription) provide an option to have your cameras professionally monitored, so if someone were to break into your home and you didn’t have your phone with you, the monitoring service could dispatch help (like the police in this scenario) for you.