I know it’s strange to start with a second best pick, but that’s because the very best pick is the successor of this one. Just hear me out.
This is one of the more expensive products that I have seen in this category, but it’s not exactly the best looking. It comes in a couple of finishes, but honestly the all-black scheme is the only one that looks halfway decent. I really hope this is a brilliant doorbell, because it would have to be in order to make up for those looks.
So what do you get for the not-insignificant price? Well, for one thing you aren’t limited to simply watching passively through a camera, you can also talk to whomever is standing in front of your door. I guess that makes it more of a video intercom than an actual doorbell, but the dividing line is fuzzy at best.
This doorbell has night vision built right in, it has motion detection, and it will alert you wherever you are. One thing I like about this doorbell is that it has a built-rechargeable power source so that if the power goes out it will keep working. The downside of this is that batteries have a relatively short lifespan, so the battery will probably reach the end of its life before the rest of the device.
This doorbell is also compatible with wireless N technology, which means that even with this somewhat older model, you don’t have to introduce a slow protocol into your home network. With a 180-degree field of view and 720p HD video resolution you should have no problem identifying the faces of the person at the door.
All in all this looks like an excellent choice, but I have noted a few issues that might influence your purchasing decision. The camera seems to catch people as they are leaving and what’s worse, you can’t access the camera whenever you want. It seems like a silly thing, but you can only access the camera when someone rings the bell. Luckily a software update has been released that adds a “live view” function, but people have had mixed success in getting it to work. The most recent customer reviews say it works fluently now, but for a doorbell that costs almost two hundred bucks I’m just not terribly impressed by all this.
However, compared to the rest of the field it seems that the Ring is perhaps the best you are going to get, apart perhaps from the improved Pro version, but this costs far too much to get my recommendation.