Ultimate Guide to Indoor Security Cameras in your home
This part of the ultimate guide to home security we look at Indoor Security Cameras. This guide gives you an overview of indoor security cameras, the different types of indoor cameras, what the most common uses are and a buyers guide for buying a indoor security camera.
Use the sections below to skip to the part most relevant to you!
What is an Indoor Security Camera?
Interior cameras are often smaller, more lightweight, and less bold than their external counterparts. Both indoor and outdoor cameras will boost features such as infrared, HD resolution and wide angle lenses but the major difference between the two is the durability of camera.
Wired vs Wireless
A wireless camera, often referred to as a Wi-Fi camera, is surprisingly not completely wireless most of the time. Often a wireless camera is one that transmits footage via Wi-Fi and is plugged into a power outlet, however some indoor security camera models are completely wireless.
A wired security camera system is when a recording device is connected to multiple cameras. This system is hardwired and all interconnected.
The choice between a wired and wireless indoor security camera will depend on what features you want to utilise and what you want to use the camera for. For example, the Hive View is completely wireless so can be moved from room to room to easily fit different purposes.
How is Video Stored from a Security Camera?
Internal Camera Storage
Internal storage is generally going to be a microSD chip which is located inside the camera, this is usually the option you would choose if you don’t want to rely on the internet or extensive wiring.
A big advantage of local storage is speed, as there is no transfer of data its available straight away, however a big disadvantage is that there is limited storage capacity. As it doesn’t hold much storage often local storage cameras will only record when they detect motion which can leave it vulnerable.
External Camera Storage
This is a good option if you want to record throughout the day, as you can store vast amounts of video at a relatively low cost.
Connecting your camera to storage through wiring will be a lot faster for watching live videos. The wire would most likely route to either a DVR (Digital Video Recorder) or straight to a computer with vast storage space, which can be useful if you want to edit the video.
Wireless Camera Storage
When installed correctly and efficiently wireless cameras can be the most secure and easiest to fit of all the security camera options. You just plug in, connect to a network, and install the software. The footage either routes to an NVR (Network Video Recorder) or a personal computer.
One major disadvantage is that they can overload smaller wireless networks, which can slow down the internet but also can produce a lagged video feed. If you are looking to get this type of camera check if your network can handle it first!
Are Indoor Security Cameras Worth It?
Yes. In terms of security, owning an indoor security camera acts as a deterrent for people looking to force entry into your home as it makes your home a riskier target. Likewise, should someone forcibly enter your property, a properly positioned indoor security camera can help to capture the culprit and identify what may have been stolen.
What is an IP camera?
An IP camera is a device that can transmit video data via the internet. You can us an IP camera to live stream the video they capture via, laptop, smart phone or any device connected to the internet. As long as the device is connected to the internet you can view the video from anywhere in the world. This means they make great indoor security cameras, as well as the fact that they’re not complicated to install and have no wiring costs.
Where Do You Put IP Camera?
There are only 2 things that affect where you put your indoor security camera, first thing is whether or not your IP camera needs to be plugged in. This can limit the places you can put it, as it needs to be in reach of a plug. The other consideration is how wide your cameras field of view is and how much of the room you want to cover. So, before you drill it in anywhere, you need to check if you are seeing what you want to see.
Higher Quality Images
The resolution on these IP cameras normally ranges from 720p to 1080p, the higher the number the clearer images you are going to get. A higher quality image does take up more storage, but you need to balance that with the need to have the crispest image possible. It depends if you want to be able to identify a burglar’s face, or just want to see what the kids are up to when you’re not there.
Things to Consider Before You Buy an Indoor Camera
What do you want the camera for?
Do you want it for a monitoring system? An intruder alarm?
What you want the cameras to do will determine what features you need to look for, for example if you want it purely for security you might not want to spend more money to get one that has a two way audio as you wouldn’t need it. Make a list of why you want the camera and what feature you think you’ll need; this will help you focus your search and get the best camera for you.
Most home security cameras that are able to live stream to your smartphone and send push notifications will need the use of your home WiFi. So, when considering what camera, you want to buy, you must keep in mind if your WiFi will be strong enough to enable you to use all of your cameras features efficiently. You will need to consider that your internet speed will play a part in the effectiveness of your camera and how many cameras you will be able to set up on that network. Other factors such as image resolution, sound and motion records, live streaming ability and storage type will require the ability of faster internet speeds to work efficiently.
Are you a smart home user? Do you have an Alexa, Google Assistant or Apple Home? Do you want your camera to be able to interact with your existing smart home system?
Many cameras are compatible with different smart home systems, and many smart home systems have their own cameras. When purchasing a camera, you might want to consider what compatibility features it has with other smart products and what use it will have for your home.
The Camera Features That You Want
The more features on a camera, usually the more expensive they are. With a wide range of features that are available from the indoor security cameras that are on the market, it may be worth having an idea of what features you may want in your camera, such as push notifications or two way audio, to narrow down your choices and to ensure that you are choosing the best camera for your needs.
Are You Technologically Inclined?
The most common denominator with most smart cameras is that to use most of their functions and to have complete control is to use the adjacent app. These apps will allow you to use functions such as live streaming on your smart device, however before buying a camera it may be worth researching the app to get a better understanding of how easy it is to use, especially if you are not as technologically inclined.
How Many Security Cameras Do You Need?
The number of cameras you will need is dependent on what you want them to do; if you want to monitor you home throughout the day then we advise that you have at least one wide-angled camera in the main rooms of your home, such as the lounge, kitchen, and master bedroom. However, if you are looking to protect against intruders then we would suggest looking into an outdoor camera first. Indoor cameras are great but if someone were to break into your home, they would catch the intruder in the act rather than create a deterrent whereas outdoor cameras are designed to warn off would be intruders.
What Features Do I Need for My Indoor Security Camera?
The features that you will need for an indoor security camera will depend on what you want to use the camera for. If you are looking for smart security, then you might want to purchase an indoor security camera that allows for different zones of the camera to be active at different times or motion censored push notifications. Whereas if you are looking for a camera that can double as a pet monitor, you might want live feed options, use of an app and two way audio to talk to your pet remotely.
The features that we suggest looking for to optimise security is the option to livestream direct from the camera to a smart device so that you can monitor your home from a remote location, motion sensors which then create push notifications as this will allow you to be notified if there is any unexpected movement in your home.
As a Pet Monitor
If you want security but also want your indoor security camera to double as a pet monitor, then consider features such as two-way audio and zoning. Two-way audio will allow you to talk to your pet throughout the day, comforting your dog as they start to bark at the postman, whereas zoning will allow you to identify areas to ignore in your camera view so that you don’t get any false alarms.
As a Baby Monitor
Features such as two-way audio and livestreaming will help you to comfort your child in the night, but we suggest also looking for a camera that can easily be repositioned so you can keep a watchful eye no matter what room your child is in and a timing feature so that it is only recording when you need it to and not all the time when there might not be anyone in the room.
For a Smart Home
Some indoor security cameras have the ability to connect to other smart home systems like Google Home or Alexa to create a whole system of convenience. For example, you can link the Hive View camera with Alexa and just say “Alexa tell Hive View to take a picture” and your indoor security camera will take a snapshot.
Where to Place an Indoor Security Camera
If you decide to invest in an indoor security camera, you want to be sure that you are placing them in optimal spots for security. There are a few suggestions as to where you should place your cameras but ultimately it will depend on what you want to use the cameras for.
If you don’t have any outdoor security cameras, the front and back doors are places that you should always consider covering with a security camera. Intruders will often first try doors and windows to see if they happen to be unlocked to gain entry.
We recommend placing a camera in the main entry hallway, positioned subtly as to capture who is coming in and out of the home.
Placing security cameras in bedrooms are debated as some say that it takes away privacy, whereas others argue that this is where valuables such as jewellery and watched are kept. We suggest considering placing one in the master bedroom as this is often where intruders will look for valuables. To maintain your privacy, we suggest deactivating the camera at night whilst you are sleeping or positioning the camera so that only the places where valuables are kept are in camera view.
Areas like the kitchen and living room may be worth covering with a camera, as these are the most commonly occupied areas in your home. Placing cameras here would be useful for those looking for a camera that is dual purpose, for example those looking to not only have an extra layer of security but to be able to monitor pets at home whilst they are at work.
We generally wouldn’t suggest placing a camera in a child’s room if they are school age or older, just for privacy reasons. However, indoor security cameras can double as a baby monitor for younger children, so it might be worth investing in one that has two-way audio.
How To Position an Indoor Security Camera
The placement of indoor security camera is important to make sure that you are optimising its benefits. There are a few ways that you can position an indoor security camera to ensure that you benefit the most from it.
Place It High
Placing your camera higher not only widens the field of view so more of the room is covered and there are fewer blind spots but also means that should someone forcibly enter your home; it is harder to tamper with or steal. We suggest placing your security on a high self, just out of reach or mounting it in the top corner of the room. See the image below as an example.
Be Aware of the Lighting
When positioning your camera, be aware of where the lighting is and if it effects the video quality at all. Too much direct light can lead to over exposure of the camera and mean that the video quality can be worse, or it can create blind spots. We suggest placing your camera in the day and making sure that everything in the frame is clear and then going back in the evening with the light on to ensure that everything can still be seen clearly.
Secure the Windows
If your placing a camera in a room with a ground floor window, you should always try to capture the window in the view of the camera to cover it for security.
The best Indoor Security Cameras That You Can Buy Today
|Camera||Nest Cam Indoor||Hive View||Blink 2-way Camera System||Belkin Net Camera HD||Canary Flex||Victure 2-way audio Camera|
|Resolution||1080p HD||1080p HD||720p||720p||1080p HD||1080p HD|
|Two Way Audio||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||No||Yes|
|Wide Angle Lens||130o||130o||110o||95o||116o||100o|
|Extra Information||Motion sensors|
Leg rotation 180o
Head rotation 360o
The camera can be detached from the base and placed remotely for up to an hour
Comes in two finishes; Black and Brushed Copper or White and Champagne Gold
|Works with Amazon Alexa|
2 Year battery life
Motion sensor alerts
|Motion sensor alerts||Can download an app for your smart phone|
Can also be used as an outdoor camera
Works with Google Assist and Amazon Alexa
360o rotating mount
|335o horizontal & 100o vertical rotation
Cloud storage and SD card storage
Motion sensor alerts
Our Top 3 Indoor Camera Picks
Available in two different finishes to ensure that you can fit it perfectly into your home décor, this camera is not only extremely stylish but is outstandingly practical. With a range of features including two-way audio, 1080p HD video recording, 130o wide angle lens view and push notifications straight to your phone, you can be assured that your home has a watchful eye on it. With the use of the app you will get notifications of activity, and with the use of activity zones can program the camera so that it’s more accurate and not alerting you unnecessarily. You can also livestream video and download footage from this app, so it really gives you complete control with ease.
However, what sets this camera apart from the others it the detachment of the camera from the base. The camera itself hold an hour charge so that should you want to keep an eye on another room but don’t want to make a commitment of moving the entire camera you can detach the physical camera and move it to another room.
Do keep in mind that for an extended video playback length you do have to pay a month subscription of £3.99, but this does give you 30 day video playback.
- Livestreaming & Video Playback
- Detachable camera
- Activity Zones
- Night Vision
£179 from Hive Home
Nest Cam Indoor
The thing that distinguishes this camera is that it records 24/7 for up to 30 days, in which you can scroll through all stored video; this means that you can catch any action before, during and after ensuring that your home is always monitored. With the use of the app it allows you to monitor, rewind and control your nest product and can set up nest aware which will give you alerts straight to your phone when activity is detected.
With 4 different set up options you can place the camera pretty much anywhere to get the best advantage point; through the generic stand, the magnetic stand for metal, wall mount and the tripod. All that is needed is a plug in to a power source and you are ready to go, this eliminates the worry about dead batteries.
The only potential downside is that the camera comes with just the stand as standard so for the different wall mounts and placement options you will have to purchase them separately.
- Livestreaming and full video playback
- Nest aware to give you security notifications
- 30 days free video storage
- 24/7 recording
£159 from the Google Store
As both an indoor and outdoor camera this camera is very durable and has weatherproof features that allows for versatile use. It also gives you the option to have it wired or wireless giving you freedom and control to use the camera in the exact way that suits your needs. Recording in 1080p HD from a 360o magnetic swivel base both day and night makes this camera perfect for securing your home. Like most other smart cameras you can remotely control, monitor and playback video from the canary app, which will also send instant alerts to your phone when activity is detected. Another great feature of this camera is that it works with both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant so it can fit in nicely with your existing smart home kit.
However, there are reports that the wireless battery life on this camera is less than fantastic so recommendation is to use it plugged into a power source for full use and ultimate optimisation.
- Both indoor and outdoor
- Livestreaming and video playback
- Two way audio
- 360o swivel mount
£180 from Amazon
Your Indoor Security Camera Questions Answered
What is Internet Speed?
Your internet speed is the amount of data that can be sent to you whilst measured in seconds, for example if your internet speed was 10 Mbps it would mean that you can receive up to 10 megabytes of data per second.
Where Should I place my Indoor Security Camera?
Things to consider when placing a security camera is where you think you need them, what you are using them for, if you have ever had a break-in and what are the most vulnerable places around your home. All these factors can act as a guideline for where to place any cameras.
A few important aspects to consider:
- Ensure that the angle you have placed it in allows you to maximise the amount of space you can see.
- Consider placing the camera in a less obvious advantage point, so that if the worst was to happen you could catch someone in the act.
- Ensure that the camera has adequate lighting both night and day to catch details and provide a clear picture
- Think about placing the camera higher up, to avoid ease of tampering and to allow for the most beneficial viewpoint.
How Many Cameras Do I Need for Home Security?
The number of cameras that you need will depend on how much security you want in your home and which areas you want to be monitored. Should you want to be able to monitor pets or children whilst also allowing for more peace of mind, you may only need 1 or 2 strategically placed in high activity zones within your home. Should you want to cover all the potentially vulnerable places in your home and cover multiple rooms, you will need multiple cameras to cover all the areas you want monitored.
Do Security Cameras Record All the Time?
Some security cameras will only record when they detect activity whilst others will continually record for a set period of time.
How far Can Security Cameras See?
For a camera that records in 1080p HD, you can expect an average of around 30m to be in frame, however the further away a subject is the less clear it is on video.
Can My Camera be Hacked?
Unfortunately, like most technology security cameras can be hacked. However, the majority support encryption software which means any data that is streamed from the camera is protected. Our top tips for security on cameras and technology are:
- Purchase a camera from a trusted seller with a recognisable name
- Make sure your home Wi-Fi network is secure
- Create unique, strong passwords; making sure that you don’t use the same one on all devices
- Always update the firmware on your camera and devices
Can a Camera double as a Baby/Child/Pet Monitor?
Some cameras have two way audio which means that you would be able to talk and listen to the person on the other side of the camera making for an efficient monitor. However, if you are looking to multipurpose your security camera ensure that it features infrared technology to give clear pictures in low light and at night, as a wide view of angle and has a tilt and pan feature which you can control with your phone.
Can an Indoor Camera Also be Used as an Outdoor Camera?
An outdoor camera is designed to be resistant to weather conditions such as rain, cold temperatures and even snow! An indoor camera is not designed to withstand these conditions and would most likely break if left outside.
Likewise, if you were to point your indoor camera out the window for external surveillance you might find that it has a glare from the window which would then distort your video feed and render it useless.
What Else Could be Used as Security Deterrents?
It might sound silly but simply putting things in awkward positions so that if someone was to come through a window they would crash into an object, is actually a great way to DIY security. Although unorthodox, if someone was to break into your house and trip over an object it would most likely create a loud noise which increases the burglar’s chances of getting noticed.
Although this a good way to create more obstacles for intruders, we don’t recommend that this is the only security measure that you take as it has no guarantee to warn off intruders or be as effective as a security camera.
How Long Do Batteries Last in a Wireless Security Camera?
The average is about 6 months, but they can go up to 2 years depending on what make and model you have. We suggest always reading the specifics of the wireless security camera you purchase.