The best Ring doorbells in 2023

The best Ring doorbells in 2023

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Published Sep 8, 2023 4:00 PM

For the past several years, Ring doorbells have offered various popular video doorbells to help you keep a watchful eye over your home and deliveries. At every price point, from its entry-level model to its higher-priced flagship models, they are easy to use, set up quickly, and include many useful features. The company is continually adding new technologies to improve their capabilities. Many new Ring models include facial recognition, enhanced with artificial intelligence, which can identify objects in motion and distinguish between different types of objects. Specifically, the doorbell can tell if it’s a human being, an animal, or a vehicle. But Ring doesn’t only include cutting-edge tech. They’re also developing pragmatic ones, like its knock detection on its Ring Peephole Cam, which is designed for those who live in apartments, and features that help protect your system, like two-factor authentication to protect consumer data. The best Ring doorbell cameras help you know what’s going on at your front door without having to leave the couch or rush back to the house.

How we chose the best Ring doorbells

Over the years, I’ve covered many different types of digital imaging products, including video doorbells, and have published a number of stories on video doorbells for various websites, including Tom’s Guide and Gearbrain. I brought my expertise in this area to help discover the best Ring doorbells. I also looked at critical reviews and user recommendations and did a lot of research to narrow down our list to find the best models. To find the best ones, I carefully considered a number of factors, including specific features such as video resolution, product design, and audio, as well as more expansive qualities, like ease of use, versatility, and smart home compatibility.  

The best Ring doorbells: Reviews & Recommendations

All recommended doorbell video cameras, including Ring doorbells, detect motion and record video in HD resolution day or night. It’s why many consumers find them essential for their homes since these doorbells can identify possible intruders and instantly send you alerts. They also come with two-way speakers, which means you can safely interact with strangers or even scare away potential intruders. If you’re looking to upgrade your smart home and sense of security, look no further than our top picks.

Best overall: Ring Video Doorbell 4

Specs

  • Video Resolution: 1080p
  • Power: Rechargeable battery or wired
  • Storage: Cloud storage (Ring Protect subscription is required to access videos)
  • Field of view: 160 degrees horizontal, 84 degrees vertical
  • Integration: Amazon Alexa, IFTTT
  • Size: 5.1 x 2.4 x 1.1 in.

Pros

  • Versatile
  • Easy to install
  • Powerful detection features
  • Connects to dual-band (2.4 or 5.0 GHz) WiFi

Cons

  • A bit pricey
  • No local storage options and no free storage
  • Not compatible with Google Assistant

One valuable quality you’ll find when you buy the Ring Video Doorbell 4 is that it is quite a versatile doorbell. It lets you power the doorbell in one of two ways—either via a rechargeable battery or by hooking it up to the wires from your previously wired doorbell. It’s also easy to install, set up, and use overall. 

It captures very good quality video at 1080p and comes with two-way audio so that you can interact with visitors via your mobile device or your computer. It also has dual-band WiFi for connectivity, and the system also integrates with Amazon Alexa or IFTTT. One unique feature found on this model is the Ring’s Pre-Roll feature, which enables you to capture motion four seconds before a motion event is triggered. After these critical seconds of activity are recorded, they are attached to the event clip.

It’s a bit pricey, though. And it does fall short in some features, too. You can’t interact with it with Google Assistant or other technologies. Another feature that could be improved is its night vision, which lacks color. 

Best with advanced features: Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2

Specs

  • Video Resolution: 1536p HD Video (1536 x 1536)
  • Power: Wired only
  • Storage: Cloud storage (Ring Protect subscription is required to access videos)
  • Field of view: 150 degrees horizontal, 90 degrees vertical
  • Integration: Amazon Alexa, IFTTT
  • Size: 4.5 x 1.9 x 0.9 in.

Pros

  • Excellent quality video
  • Higher resolution than most Ring models
  • Includes color night vision
  • Connects to dual-band (2.4 or 5.0 GHz) WiFi

Cons

  • A bit pricey
  • No local storage options and no free storage
  • Not compatible with Google Assistant

If you’re looking for a step-up Ring doorbell with better overall video and image quality and additional advanced features, you’ll want to check out the Ring Doorbell Pro 2. 

It may be pricey, but it’s worth it if you want a powerful feature set. Like the Ring Battery Doorbell Plus, this Ring model provides users with more than 1080p video resolution, which it calls 1536p HD Video (1536 x 1536), or head-to-toe video, since it provides more resolution in a square aspect ratio. Plus, you can get extra features such as dual-band WiFi connectivity and color night vision. 

This model comes with 3D motion detection, which uses radar to detect the distance of an object more accurately and reduces the number of false alerts the system generates, including in dark and low-light conditions.

Best for apartments: Ring Peephole Cam

Specs

  • Video Resolution: 1080p
  • Power: Rechargeable battery only
  • Storage: Cloud storage (Ring Protect subscription is required to access videos)
  • Field of view: 155 degrees horizontal, 90 degrees vertical
  • Integration: Amazon Alexa, IFTTT
  • Size: 1.8 x 1.8 x 3.0 in.

Pros

  • Easy to install and easy to use
  • Inventive design
  • Includes knock detection
  • Added privacy controls

Cons

  • Only has 2.4GHz WiFi connectivity
  • No local storage options and no free storage
  • Not compatible with Google Assistant

This unique model is ideal for those who own an apartment since it allows you to replace your existing peephole with this Ring model: Simply unscrew and remove the existing peephole on your door with the included tool. Then, you can place the camera on the outside and connect it with the rear section on the inside. All you need to do next is insert the rechargeable battery and snap the cover onto the rear section. 

What’s also nice about this model is that it also includes detection features not included in other models, like knock detection. However, it doesn’t provide as much flexibility in connectivity since it only connects with 2.4GHz WiFi.

Best battery-operated: Ring Battery Doorbell Plus

Specs

  • Video Resolution: 1536p HD Video (1536 x 1536)
  • Power: Rechargeable battery or wired
  • Storage: Cloud storage (Ring Protect subscription is required to access videos)
  • Field of view: 150 degrees horizontal, 150 degrees vertical
  • Integration: Amazon Alexa, IFTTT
  • Size: 5.1 x 2.4 x 1.1 in.

Pros

  • Versatile
  • Easy to install
  • Excellent quality video
  • Higher resolution than most Ring models
  • Includes color night vision

Cons

  • Only has 2.4GHz WiFi connectivity
  • No local storage options and no free storage
  • Not compatible with Google Assistant

The Ring Battery Doorbell Plus is an excellent value for almost any homeowner looking for a quality battery-powered Ring doorbell since it provides you with several powerful advanced features without being very expensive. For example, it gives you a choice of power options—hardwired or battery-powered. But it’s also a standout performer: It not only has excellent video quality but, like the Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2, it provides users with more than 1080p video resolution, which it calls 1536p HD Video (1536 x 1536) or head-to-toe video, since it provides you with more resolution in a square aspect ratio. Plus, it gives you color night vision for better image quality in very low light settings.

However, if you’re looking for top-tier connectivity, you may want to consider other Ring models since this one only has 2.4GHz WiFi connectivity.

Best budget: Ring Video Doorbell Wired

Specs

  • Video Resolution: 1080p
  • Power: Wired only
  • Storage: Cloud storage (Ring Protect subscription is required to access videos)
  • Field of view: 155 degrees horizontal, 90 degrees vertical
  • Integration: Amazon Alexa, IFTTT
  • Size: 3.9 x 1.8 x 0.9 in.

Pros

  • Relatively inexpensive
  • Excellent quality video
  • Easy to use
  • Small and compact

Cons

  • Only has 2.4GHz Wi-Fi connectivity
  • No local storage options and no free storage
  • Not compatible with Google Assistant

If you’re looking for a budget-priced smart doorbell, this model fits the bill. It captures excellent quality video at 1080p, is easy to use, and is less expensive than most models on the market. It has customizable motion settings: For instance, you can use the Ring mobile app to set up camera motion zones so that you exclude high-traffic areas and only detect motion in the areas that are important to you. 

The doorbell itself is also a bit smaller and more compact than many in class, which can be important when you don’t want to clutter up the entryway to your home. Of course, like all Ring doorbells, you will need to sign up for one of Ring’s Protect plans.

However, it’s not as versatile as some of the other Ring models, which give you a choice of powering the doorbell by either battery power or hardwiring the unit. Like other Ring doorbells, it also doesn’t integrate with Google Assistant or other smart technology systems. 

What to consider when buying the best Ring doorbell

When you’re looking to buy the best Ring doorbell for your needs, you’ll want to look beyond just the sticker price. Ring doorbells all share certain qualities: For instance, they all hook up to your home wireless network. But how they connect might differ from model to model—most Ring doorbells have dual-band WiFi (2.4 or 5.0 GHz). However, a few models only have 2.4GHz. So, when you’re looking to buy, you’ll want to determine if dual-band connectivity is important—and, of course, make sure you have a WiFi router that transmits a strong enough signal to blanket the porch. 

Here are several important factors to think about before you buy:

Power source

Each type of power source has its pros and cons. For instance, if you decide to choose a Ring model that’s only battery-powered, you may have more flexibility in where to place the doorbell, but you’ll need to make sure you remember to recharge it (although you’ll get alerts sent to you, as well). For models that require a hardwired power connection, you don’t need to worry about recharging your batteries. But you may be more limited in where you can place the doorbell. For those who want the best of both worlds, Ring makes a few models, including the Ring Battery Doorbell Plus and the Ring Video Doorbell 4, that can either run on rechargeable batteries or can be set up in a hardwired configuration.

What video resolution, features, and product designs are most important to you?

All Ring models capture video at 1080p video resolution. However, some models offer more—like the Ring Battery Doorbell Plus and Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2. Both of these models have what Ring calls “1536p HD Video” or head-to-toe video, which captures video at 1536-by-1536 resolution. That added resolution allows for clear, more detailed video footage.  

But image and video quality aren’t the only important features you’ll want to consider. For instance, there’s a whole constellation of features that are available on Ring doorbells, including motion detection, two-way audio, Amazon Alexa integration features, color night vision, and dual-band WiFi, to name just a few. So, you’ll want to look over the feature sets of each Ring model to see which one best meets your needs.

Additionally, look at the design and the actual size of the doorbell you’re considering. Although all Ring doorbells have similar designs, not all models are alike. For instance, if you live in an apartment, Ring has cleverly designed a video doorbell that’s tailor-made for apartments: The Ring Peephole Cam allows you to remove your apartment door’s existing peephole and add this model, which provides you with lots of valuable security features.

Decide on a Ring Protect plan

One additional but important decision you’ll want to make is to decide on the right Ring Protect plan for the Ring doorbell you’re buying. That’s because while you can use the doorbell without a plan, you won’t be able to access and download any recorded videos. Compare prices on the Ring website

FAQs

Q: Do all Ring doorbells have night vision?

All Ring doorbells are equipped with night vision, which depicts the scene only in black-and-white tones. However, some newer Ring models, like the Video Doorbell Pro 2, include color night vision, providing a more realistic scene rendering.

Q: Do Ring cameras record all the time?

No, Ring video doorbells do not record video all the time. But if you do have a Ring Protect plan for your Ring doorbell, it will record and store videos when motion is detected by your device. It will also record video when the doorbell button is pressed or if you initiate the device’s live video stream.

Q: Can I use Ring without a subscription?

Ring doorbells don’t technically require a Ring Protect subscription plan. So, without a subscription plan, you can view real-time video for Ring doorbells as events happen. However, you’ll need to sign up for one of Ring’s Protect plans to access and download any video recordings of those events. Plans start at $3.99 a month (or $39.99 for annual plan). For more on comparing plans, click here 

 Final thoughts on the best Ring doorbells

For the past several years, Ring doorbells have offered a variety of popular video doorbells to choose from to help you keep a watchful eye over your porch, patio, and/or packages. At every price point, from its entry-level model to its higher-priced flagship models, they are easy to use, set up quickly, and include many useful features.

Today’s video doorbells, including Ring doorbells, offer great value for homeowners since they allow you to keep a watchful eye on your most important investment—your home—in real-time. So, whether you’re at home, at work, or on vacation, video doorbells can stream live video feeds to your mobile devices and allow you to take action on protecting your home.  

Why trust us

Popular Science started writing about technology more than 150 years ago. There was no such thing as “gadget writing” when we published our first issue in 1872, but if there was, our mission to demystify the world of innovation for everyday readers means we would have been all over it. Here in the present, PopSci is fully committed to helping readers navigate the increasingly intimidating array of devices on the market right now.

Our writers and editors have combined decades of experience covering and reviewing consumer electronics. We each have our own obsessive specialties—from high-end audio to video games to cameras and beyond—but when we’re reviewing devices outside of our immediate wheelhouses, we do our best to seek out trustworthy voices and opinions to help guide people to the very best recommendations. We know we don’t know everything, but we’re excited to live through the analysis paralysis that internet shopping can spur so readers don’t have to.

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