Smart Video Doorbells That Store Locally
Even if you’ve never considered a smart video camera to watch over your property, you might be eyeballing a smart video doorbell. Guess what? Those have cameras too, and the vast majority of them, especially the most popular ones like Ring, store all of your video footage in the cloud. If you’re uncomfortable with this arrangement, or if you just want to know what your options are for the best smart video doorbells that store locally, then we’ve got you covered. Out of all of the smart video doorbells on this list, we like the Eufy Video Doorbell best because of its top-quality construction, excellent video capabilities, built-in eMMC storage, high-end encryption, and included doorbell chime.
Best overall: Eufy Video Doorbell
Eufy is easily the most well-known brand name on this list. Still, just in case it’s flown under your radar: The company is one of Anker’s sub-brands and is known for making high-quality connected home devices like smart cameras and lighting, robot vacuums, smart plugs, and even scales and baby monitors.
The Eufy Video Doorbell is one of the top products on several of our best smart video doorbell lists for many reasons, including the fact that you can store all of your video recordings locally — up to 4GB thanks to built-in eMMC flash storage. On top of that, you get 2K HD imaging, high dynamic range and distortion correction, and all of the connectivity you’d expect from a smart device. Eufy also includes a door chime with the doorbell, which you often have to pay extra for with other providers such as Ring. This inclusion is a good thing, too, because your existing doorbell chime likely isn’t compatible with the Eufy Video Doorbell.
The picture quality is excellent not just because of the resolution but because it records and displays at a 4:3 aspect ratio, which shows more in the frame than other similar cameras with a 16:9 aspect ratio. You can view up to three seconds of footage before an alert, and you can customize smart detection zones, so every loose branch or squirrel doesn’t trip your camera. You can control your Eufy Video Doorbell with Amazon’s Alexa or the Google Assistant, and you know your video will be safe thanks to Eufy’s military-grade AES-256 encrypted chip. The device is powered over your existing doorbell wiring, but that means there is no battery backup option.
This is one of the pricier devices on this list, so don’t forget to check out some deals that might be going on. You can also find a 1080p version for a little bit cheaper if you aren’t as particular about the video’s quality.
- Built-in eMMC storage
- Doorbell chime included
- 2K HD camera and 4:3 aspect ratio
- Military-grade AES 256 encryption
- More expensive than others on this list
- No battery-powered option
- Not compatible with existing doorbell chimes
Best with Google Assistant: Nest Doorbell (Battery)
Google’s Nest Hello Doorbell has long been one of our favorite video doorbell options on the market, though it’s had a few major disadvantages. First, it’s expensive. Second, it’s old. And third, you pretty much needed to spring for a Nest Aware subscription to access any of the key features, including storage. But if you live in a Google Home/Nest ecosystem and want local storage, there’s good news. The new Nest Doorbell (Battery) gives you this option, albeit on a somewhat limited basis.
The Nest Doorbell (Battery) gives its users three hours of event video history, but it won’t save more than that on the device. If you want more storage, it will be in the cloud from a Nest Aware or Nest Aware Plus subscription. In addition to that limited local storage, you also get AI detection and motion zones without a subscription, making this a perfect option for those who want to try a Made by Google device without committing to a recurring monthly or annual fee.
The Nest Doorbell (Battery) comes in four different colors (as opposed to the two options for the Nest Hello), including Snow, Linen, Ivy, and Ash. Because it’s wireless, it’s easy for anyone to install just about anywhere, though you will have to recharge the battery every few months.
- Includes AI detection and motion zones without a Nest Aware subscription
- Battery-powered for easy installation
- Cheaper than Nest Hello
- Comes in a variety of colors
- Can store video locally for a limited time
- Need Nest Aware subscription for long-term video storage
- There are better camera options at this price point
Best cloud option: Arlo Video Doorbell
Wait a second, the best cloud option? I thought these were the best video doorbells that store locally? Well, you’re right, but this Arlo Video Doorbell offers you the best of both worlds if you want them. Not only can you store up to 2TB of video via an Arlo base station or Smarthub, but Arlo also features one of the best cloud subscription services available, in case you want or need that as a backup.
As for tech specs, this doorbell is also one of the best. It records in HD with a super-wide 180-degree field of view. It features excellent night vision and is weather-resistant to withstand heat, cold, rain, or snow. Note that this doorbell is only available in a wired version, so you may need to call upon an electrician to help you install it.
- Store up to 2TB locally on Arlo base-station or Smarthub
- Excellent cloud storage plans are available
- 180-degree field of view
- HD, HDR, and night vision
- Wired option only
- A tad on the expensive side
Best storage capacity: EZVIZ Video Doorbell Camera
EZVIZ may not be the most recognizable brand on this list, but the company has a reputation for producing high-quality security cameras for very affordable prices. Its devices are feature-packed. This doorbell has human shape detection, night vision (up to 16 feet), and a wide 170-degree verticle field of view.
In addition, the doorbell is IP65 dust and water-resistant, works on both the 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequencies, and records in 1080p. But best of all, it comes with a microSD slot that supports up to 256GB of local, on-device storage.
- Human shape detection
- 170-degree verticle field of view
- IP65 water and dust resistance
- Store up to 256GB on device
- There are better quality cameras available
- No option to swap faceplates
Best security chops: Lorex Wi-Fi Video Doorbell
Lorex makes several home security cameras and devices, and the company’s first step into video doorbells looks to be a strong one. It features a 1080p HD camera with a wide 160-degree field of view and loads of on-device storage potential. For starters, you get a 16GB microSD card included with the purchase of your device, but you can also swap that up with a card of up to 64GB capacity.
While the Lorex Wi-Fi Video Doorbell works well with Android and iOS apps, it does not currently support Alexa, Google Assistant, or other smart voice assistant integration. There’s also, unfortunately, no option for backup battery power with this device. However, just about everything else you’d expect from a device like this is here, including two-way talking, motion alerts, infrared night vision, and around-the-clock monitoring. If cost isn’t a major consideration, a newer, 2K model is available for nearly twice the price.
- Ultra-wide 160-degree field of view
- 1080p HD resolution
- 16GB microSD card included
- Supports up to 64GB of on-device storage
- No battery-powered option
- No official support for Amazon’s Alexa or Google Assistant
Cheapest pre-installed: MECO Video Doorbell
A caveat for most of the cameras on this list (aside from the Eufy) is that, yes, they have the option for on-device storage, but most don’t include it. Not so with the MECO Video Doorbell, which comes with a pre-installed 32GB microSD card. True, it’s not the cheapest on this list, but it still sits in the affordable-to-moderately-priced range (when compared to similar devices), and the fact that it comes with the microSD card in the box is one less hassle for you to deal with when ordering and setting up your new doorbell.
Pre-installed storage isn’t the only thing this doorbell has going for it. MECO includes a doorbell chime (like Eufy does) and can record at 1080p with a 166-degree wide-angle field of view. In addition, it sports two-way audio, IP65 weather resistance, and the ability to record 30-second voice messages to respond to visitors when you are not around (similar to the Nest Hello). While the batteries come in a rechargeable pack, many customers complained they didn’t last as long as advertised, so you might find yourself recharging every few weeks instead of every few months as promised. Also, it doesn’t seem to support virtual assistants, so you’ll have to be content viewing your footage through the app.
- 32GB microSD card included
- IP65 weather resistance
- Door chime included
- A hood over the camera to shield from sun and elements
- Batteries must be recharged frequently
- No official support for Amazon’s Alexa or Google Assistant
Most versatile: ZUMIMALL Video Doorbell
Smart home security should not be limited to those who can afford premium devices, so thankfully, there are more affordable yet still versatile options like this video doorbell from ZUMIMALL. For under $100, you get a video doorbell that hits all the basics, including two-way audio, night vision, motion detection, and weatherproofing. Not too shabby if you ask us.
The ZUMIMALL is a battery-powered device, which means you can install it anywhere in minutes, though you will need to remember to recharge its batteries every couple of months. It has a microSD card slot and includes a 32GB pre-installed card in the box, but if you want, you can swap that out and expand its local storage up to 128GB. You also get a chime included, which can often be an additional expense.
The video quality tops out at 1080p, which is fantastic for the price. However, the camera has a reasonably wide field of view at 166 degrees and sports IP65 weather and dust resistance.
- Wide field of view
- Rechargeable batteries
- Pre-installed 32GB local storage
- Expandable up to 128GB
- Chime included
- Doesn’t work on 5GHz Wi-Fi networks
Cloud storage isn’t going anywhere, as it’s a huge profit center and a great convenience to users, but recent data leaks and privacy scandals have shown there is a market for another approach. We expect more smart video doorbell manufacturers to start including on-device storage into their best smart doorbells to address market demand for greater personal control over user data. Even though the doorbells on this list all offer local storage options, our top pick has to be the Eufy Video Doorbell. Not only does the brand have a solid reputation in the smart home space, but it packs tons of great features into the device to give consumers a great experience.
If you’re looking for more on-device storage capacity or a more affordable alternative, there are other great options on this list as well. The key is that you, as a consumer, do have options, and hopefully, this guide will prove helpful as you shop for a smart video doorbell.
Credits — The team that worked on this guide
Jeramy Johnson is proud to help to Keep Austin Weird and loves hiking in the hill country of central Texas with a breakfast taco in each hand. When he’s not writing about smart home gadgets and wearables, he’s defending his relationship with his smart voice assistants to his family. You can follow him on Twitter at @jeramyutgw.
We may earn a commission for purchases using our links. Learn more.