The Ring Inc. offers various cameras, accessories, and devices for security purposes. They have a deep portfolio of such products, which incidentally includes both the Spotlight Cam and the Ring Doorbell. The latter device, the doorbell cam, is particularly popular and is practically the signature product of the company. They’re both Alexa-compatible, 1080p, and water-resistant cameras you can place outside your door or at your yard for the sake of keeping your humble abode safe, secure and monitored when push comes to shove.
With that said, which one is better at keeping a vigilant watch over your front or backyard as well as any outdoor area of your home? Let’s talk about the Ring spotlight cam vs. Ring doorbell.
Ring Spotlight Cam
Let’s talk about the Ring Spotlight Camera. It’s a spotlight with a camera attached to it so that you can see what’s in your front yard or wherever else in your yard clearly. With that in mind, here’s our review of the Ring Spotlight Cam and its many offerings.
- Most Beneficial Specifications: The specs that caught our attention the most that we can confirm are offered by the Ring Spotlight Camera is its 1080p video capture, its Ring Protect feature that ensures cloud storage, and 140° wide-angle lens. The video is high-quality so that you can capture every detail of would-be home invaders or package thieves that you can save and submit to the police. Additionally, the 140° wide-angle lens is 140° horizontal and 70° vertical to fit in quite a lot for viewing and reviewing.
- Video Quality Is Kingly: The video quality also remains quite impressive. In daylight, it delivers the crispest and sharpest of HD footage with a realistic color balance to give you high-fidelity video. At nighttime, it’s good enough to capture details and motion in the dark. Whether it’s in night-vision mode or you’re using the spotlight, it should assist you in gathering evidence of criminal activity or deter intruders from engaging in nefarious acts.
- Tiny Detriments: The camera with a spotlight only has the most minor of detriments, which includes its slight darkening and distortion towards the edge of its video capture. This doesn’t undo the fact that the frame remains bright and clear, especially when the bright spotlight is on, allowing you to view things at night. Its price is well-worth the unit, especially in light of its IR-illuminated night-vision video that offers full-color capture at night even though its images have a slightly ghostly appearance to them.
The Ring Doorbell, particularly the Ring Video Doorbell 3 (the latest affordable line of video camera doorbells that Ring Inc. has), is an excellent product that allows you to subtly protect your home with a security camera in a much more subtle fashion than your typical camera in the corner of the room or patio. Here’s what it has to offer.
- A Doorbell and Camera in One: Never mind combining your garage or yard lighting fixture with a camera. You can instead mix up your doorbell with your camera so you always have an idea who’s coming and going from your home. It certainly is a boon when guarding your house against package thieves or anticipating a delivery from Amazon and the like. The doorbell cam also comes with two-way talk (intercom) and 1080p HD video.
- What We Like About It: The latest Ring Video Doorbell device in the Ring Doorbell brand line offers benefits like the ability to be either powered by a rechargeable battery or hardwired to your doorbell wiring. You can pick which option is more convenient for you. Additionally, its people-only mode filters out non-person motion activity, like in the case of swinging doors, pets running around, or nearby scavengers scuttling about at your patio. The pre-Roll feature also records extra motion activity as a ready option.
- What We Don’t Like About It: The Video Doorbell 3 is pricey at about $200 and that’s more of the case with the Video Doorbell 3 Plus at about $230. Moreover, it only works with Amazon’s Alexa. You can’t make Apple’s Siri or Google Assistant compatible with this smart device. If you’re used to using Alexa instead, you’re good as gold. Additionally, you can save up to about $50 and so forth using the various discounts available on the Ring Inc. website. Check the site out for more details.
Ring Spotlight Cam vs. Ring Doorbell
Which do you want more? The ability to record footage for review from your doorbell or from a spotlight at your garage and front yard? Your priorities will dictate whether the Video Doorbell is more of a worthwhile purchase or if the Spotlight Cam makes the most sense for you security-wise.
- The Spotlight is the Main Feature: Let’s put into the spotlight the main feature of the Spotlight Camera, which not-coincidentally is its spotlight. The unit has twin light bars on the housing’s front edges and they light up in order to capture on video who the people in your backyard or front yard are early in the morning. They’re motion-triggered lights that ensure better vision quality at night even though the unit records better during the daytime (as would any other camera, to be honest). It even comes with IR night-vision mode available also on the Ring Doorbell.
- The Advantages of Video Doorbells by Principle: By principle, it’s advantageous to avail of a video doorbell because it activates every time it is rung and it records at your front door or porch even when it’s not rung. It’s like that classic hotel door peephole, except this time you don’t have to be at your door to see who’s on the other side. It even doubles as an intercom with its two-way talk feature that’s included with the unit, so you get multiple devices in one device. A doorbell that doubles as a camera are so practical you’d almost wonder why people didn’t think of it before.
- Price of the Spotlight Cam: The Spotlight Camera’s regular price is about $200 but you can avail of it at a discount of about $170. You can also pay it gradually within 12 months in a no-interest installment fashion. You can also pay for it in packs of 2, 3, and 4. You can save up to about $300 by buying the discounted packs. In short, it’s affordable for a security cam with its own light and the more you buy of it the more savings you’ll get. So it’s more expensive than the doorbell in light of its functions and bright lights.
- Price of the Video Doorbell: You can get the Video Doorbell 3 of Ring Inc. for about $150 even though its regular price is at about $200 by ordering directly on the Ring Inc. website. You can also prequalify for a down payment program wherein you take up to 12 months to pay for the unit with no late fees or interest rates.
- The Nitty-Gritty of the Debate: On one hand, the Ring Spotlight Cam is a handy outdoor unit that you can place anywhere outside your home that comes with its own red LED inside its motion sensor dome at its housing’s base that’ll flash red as it sounds its 110-decibel alarm. On the other hand, the Ring Video Doorbell also has its own alarm and can be handy in detecting both guests and intruders thanks to its placement and function. The Spotlight Cam is more adaptable and flexible than the Video Doorbell and can get a better, full-color image at night exactly because of its spotlight, which the Video Doorbell lacks.
- Figuring Out Your Priorities: If you can afford to get both you should just get both. If not, then you need to decide your priorities since they’re both essential in their own ways. The video doorbell a little more so than the spotlight cam, since the latter works best when bought as a package deal of 3-4 units. It’s almost assured that the doorbell camera will get the most action out of the two units by virtue of it being a doorbell. However, the spotlight cam is more expensive due to it being more flexible. You can place it in more areas outdoors compared to the doorbell that only sits on your front porch.
The Ring Video Doorbell will get the most usage from you since it alerts you of guests or intruders right on the front of your door. However, when it comes to places that aren’t near doors or garages, you can depend on the Ring Spotlight Camera instead. It doubles as a lighting fixture while at the same time giving you a good idea of who or what is in front, at back, or within the perimeter of your home for your own safety. In light of this, the spotlight cam has more leeway but in terms of the specific uses of the Ring Video Doorbell, you can’t beat having a doorbell combined with a security cam peephole in one unit.
- Chris Hall, “Ring Spotlight Cam review: Battery-powered security“, Pocket-Lint.com, November 27, 2019