Ring, the pioneer of smart doorbells, offers the best technology. It started with doorbells and has since branched out with a lineup of different home security products that are reliable and can be installed DIY. After several hours of testing, we have reviewed Ring’s 4 main doorbell models.
Ensuring proper home security is important, but sometimes, you may not want to invest in a complete security system. Instead, you can install a video doorbell. Although it won’t provide all the features that a full-fledged security system has, it can go a long way in terms of your family’s and home’s safety. Video doorbells not only protect the most vulnerable entry point of your home, but they also help you keep an eye out for packages and suspicious people.
Ring Video Doorbell Review
1. Motion Sensors
Most video doorbells do have motion sensors, but many times, they can cause false alarms. With the Ring doorbell, you can customize the motion sensor so that it covers only the important and strategic zones. You don’t want to receive a notification every time a kid rides a bike past your doorstep, would you? On the other hand, you would want to know if anybody has come with a package, right? The Ring app lets you control this. The zone customization feature makes it stand out among its competitors.
2. Instant Alerts
Anytime your doorbell detects motion, or if someone at your doorstep presses the doorbell, you will get a notification on your phone via the app. It also gives you the option to view the live feed of whoever is at your doorstep, so that you can assess the situation and act accordingly. This feature is useful if you come home late from work. It will ensure the safety of your kids while you are away. However, you need to make sure that the Wi-Fi connection is strong, otherwise the notifications are not immediately sent.
3. Two-Way Communication
This feature allows you to answer the door without actually opening the door or being near it. You can communicate with whoever is at your doorstep via the app. This comes in handy when you someone comes with a package and you’re too busy to answer the door. Or, if you see someone causing trouble outside your door or trying to break-in, you can scare them off with the communication feature. On testing, we found this feature to be extremely handy and useful, it is definitely something that users will benefit from.
4. Infrared Night Vision
Get clear video footage of what’s happening at your doorstep even at night. Like the normal video feed, the infrared night video is also a tad bit grainy, but it serves the purpose well enough.
5. Neighborhood Watch
One interesting feature of Ring is the video-sharing feature. The Ring app has a ‘location feature’. Using this you can share your own feed and have access to the video footage of other Ring doorbell users in your neighborhood. This way, your neighbors can be warned of potential robbery, and multiple targets within the same locality can be avoided. Ring users have reported that this feature has been immensely useful. We were surprised to see that many supposedly safe neighborhoods reported many cases of package and car stealing spotted by the Ring doorbells. Hence, awareness regarding this can be spread using the Ring app, which is a great feature.
6. Multiple Installations
Ring doorbells offer a lot of flexibility when it comes to connection options. Solar, battery and hardwiring can be used, making it a versatile product. What we would recommend, though, is hardwiring. Recharging the battery is a slight burden and the package does not come with an adaptor, you will have to use your own.
7. Support for Devices
Most home security apps can only be accessed on mobile devices. But Ring also sends notifications to Windows 10 and Mac. Therefore, you can choose to link it with the device that’s most convenient for you. We found the app to be extremely user friendly and switching between features in it is very simple.
8. Accessible Footage
Extremely recent and older footage can be viewed on the Ring app. It is very easy and convenient to use.
9. Camera Quality
Video and audio quality are decent. The video is not crystal clear, but it’s good enough to see what’s happening at your doorstep. The audio is good enough for you to say goodbye to your kids every morning, or tell the mailman to leave the package at your doorstep.
Both aren’t of great quality but they serve their purpose. It has also been reported that the motion-sensor triggered camera can be rather slow if your Wi-Fi is weak. You might get snaps of people leaving your doorstep rather than arriving, which kind of loses the whole point.
So make sure your Wi-Fi connection is strong enough to support your video doorbell. Ring recommends an internet speed of at least 1 Mbps, but we recommend you go a bit higher considering that multiple devices will be connected to the Wi-Fi at the same time.
Unfortunately, the Ring doorbells don’t integrate with too many devices. It can be added as a ‘skill’ to your Echo show using Amazon’s Alexa app, but voice commands cannot be given through Echo.
11. Ease Of Use
The device is easy to install; however, you may want to consider bringing in an expert if hardwiring is to be done. The Ring app is also extremely straightforward and simple to use. Accessing live feed, watching previous videos, two way-communication, and shifting between these features is very easy.
Summary Of Various Models Of Ring Video Doorbell
The Ring doorbell models and self-monitored through the app. Once installed, monitoring the bell is straightforward and simple. You can also customize the motion detection zone to avoid pointless notifications.
Ring models may not be rich in features but they are reliable, easy to use, and gives all necessary features. If you don’t want to invest in a full-fledged security system, the Ring models provide a great layer of security to the most vulnerable place in your home. The models may be a bit clunky in appearance, but the app is dependable and serves its purpose.
Review Of Ring Video Doorbell Models
|Product||Ring Video Doorbell||Ring Video Doorbell 2||Ring Video Doorbell Pro||Ring Video Doorbell Elite|
|Field of View||180 º||160 º||160 º||160 º|
|Power Source||Wireless battery||Wired or Wireless||Wired||Wired|
|Dimensions||4.98 x 2.43 x 0.87 in.||5.05 x 2.5 x 1.08 in.||4.5 x 1.85 x 0.80 in.||4.80 x 2.75 x 2.17 in.|
|Motion Detection||Five selectable zones and customizable sensitivity scale||Five selectable zones and customizable sensitivity scale||Customizable motion detection zones||Customizable motion detection zones|
|Battery Life||6-12 months||6-12 months||12 months||12 months|
|Compatible Networks||2.4 GHz 802.11 b/g/n||2.4 GHz 802.11 b/g/n||2.4 GHz or 5.0 GHz (Channels 11-13) 802.11 b/g/n||2.4 GHz or 5.0 GHz 802.11 b/g/n|
|Compatible Tranformers||8-24 VAC, DC not compatible||8-24 VAC, DC not compatible||16-24 VAC, DC not compatible||Cannot be run off a doorbell transformer|
|Best For||Low Cost||Video Quality||Aesthetic Appeal||POE|
|Price||Check Price||Check Price||No products found.||Check Price|
1. Ring Video Doorbell
This is the earliest iteration of the Ring doorbell models. It is the most affordable among all the models (half the price of the Ring 2 and a fifth of the price of Ring Elite).
It lets you see, hear and communicate with anyone at your doorstep. It sends alerts as soon as motion is detected or when the doorbell is pressed. It has Lifetime Theft Protection, i.e., if it gets stolen, it will be replaced for free (all Ring doorbells have this).
- 180º field of view
- Most affordable
- Battery and hardwiring are both possible and feasible.
- Easy to install, it is a quick process.
- Becomes slow, stops working if Wi-Fi is not strong enough
- 720p video clarity
2. Ring Video Doorbell 2
This model has a few improvements as compared to its predecessor. The video quality is upgraded from 720p to 1080p. The video quality is considerably superior to Ring 1. It is compatible with Alexa and lets you see, hear and talk to your neighbors, friends, or whoever is at the doorstep. The feed can be viewed on both your mobile device and your desktop computer. We felt that the video lacked clarity but was more than enough for the doorstep view.
Hardwiring is an option but the Ring Pro is a better choice for that. The Ring 2 model has quite a clunky design with a cheap plastic finish. It seems to be better suited for thick door frames or adjacent walls. Also, its field of view seems to be smaller as compared to the first Ring model. The rechargeable battery pack can be connected to a power source using an included USB cable but you’ll have to use your own adaptor. A full charge takes a few hours.
Although the Ring 2 lacks finesse when compared to a brand like Nest, its easy installation, versatile configuration, and user-friendliness make it a popular and solid competitor.
- Quick installation.
- Can be integrated with Amazon’s Alexa
- Dependent on Wi-Fi (the device also shows Wi-Fi signal strength and has a Wi-Fi strength test as well so that you can choose the best location to install it)
- Coarse Speaker
3. Ring Pro 1080p
No products found.
It is identical to the Ring 2 model in terms of technology and price, but it has a greater aesthetic appeal. This model is slenderer and sophisticated than Ring 1 and 2. It is compatible with Alexa and can be controlled from your mobile device or PC (whichever is more convenient for you).
It is compatible with iOS, Android, Windows 10 and Mac. Unlike its predecessors for which hardwiring was an option, this model requires a hardwired installation. It is also a slightly complicated device. If your old doorbell wasn’t receiving 16 volts of power, you’ll need to upgrade your transformer.
You will also have to install the included power kit in your home’s chime box. The video footage is of slightly better clarity than that of Ring 2 but it does not really make a major difference. It also tends to get pixelated at times, which can be a slight nuisance.
- Smaller size than Ring 2
- Quick installation
- Supports 5.0 GHz connection, which means better and faster connectivity.
- No wireless option
4. Ring Video Doorbell Elite
Similar to the Ring Pro, but it has an edge due to its power of Ethernet (POE) connection. POE combines the Ethernet and power cable to provide a simpler and more reliable connection to the device, and ensures more consistent security. For those who want a luxury version of the Ring video doorbell, this is the model you should go for. It is sleek, sophisticated and fits into most standard junction boxes.
It has all the features that its predecessors have and also, it has edge over them in its video. Its video quality is very good. However, its cost is higher and it cannot be installed DIY. While the installation is complicated, using it is very easy and convenient.
- Power of Ethernet
- Easy installation
- The highest price amon all Ring doorbell models
Installation And Subscription Of Ring Door Bells
Ring doorbells work with a monthly subscription. For additional features, other low-cost plans are available as well. The cost may seem a little steep upfront but will balance out in the long run.
When the doorbell is installed you will have to download the Ring app to operate it. This app is available on more platforms than other home security apps and can be downloaded on desktop devices as well.
Ordering it online is easy and hassle-free, and installation is simple and can be done DIY. It comes in a compact box, along with everything that you’ll need to install it. You may have to drill your wall to install it.
Besides the actual doorbell, also included in the package are:
- Charging cable
- Screwdriver and drill bit
- Mounting Bracket
- Screws and anchors
- Level (mini)
The Ring doorbell also gives you the option of using a rechargeable battery, but we don’t recommend it, especially for the Ring Video Doorbell and the Ring Video Doorbell 2. If you choose to use a rechargeable battery, you will have to disable the doorbell every time it needs to be recharged.
It also requires a specific screwdriver to remove the rechargeable battery, and frankly, it can be a hassle to search for that one screwdriver every time this the battery needs recharging. Hardwiring is reliable and hassle-free, so we would recommend that instead.
Once the doorbell is installed, you can view the video feed via the Ring app on your mobile phone. Whenever motion is detected or the doorbell is pressed, your phone will receive notifications. Please note that the Ring mobile app is free, unlike ADT and Vivint, for which you have to keep paying to access the app.
The Ring doorbell works as a regular doorbell without the video. One great and important feature to note is that Ring’s protection plan is that it gives access to cloud storage where video footage can be stored and used for later reference.
Based on a thorough review of each model, the one that we would recommend is Ring Video Doorbell 2. If you do not want to interfere with the wiring in your home, this is the model you should go for. It’s video and audio quality are comparable to its successors, but you’ll be paying significantly lesser! Installation will also be easy, and you will always have the option of using a rechargeable battery, unlike the Ring Pro model. On the other hand, if you want a sleeker model with better video quality, you should go for the Pro or Elite.We hope that this thorough comparison of all the Ring models may have made your decision easier!
Leave a Reply