Best Security Cameras with No Subscriptions or Monthly Fees

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Best overall
Reolink Argus 3
Reolink Argus 3 Pro
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5
  • pro
    2K video resolution
  • pro
    Solar option
Best indoor
Eufy Solo IndoorCam P24
Eufy Indoor Cam 2K
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5
  • pro
    Pan and tilt
  • pro
    2K resolution
Best outdoor
Reolink Lumus
Reolink Lumus
4.3 out of 5 stars
4.25
  • pro
    Under $100
  • pro
    Colour night vision
Best budget
Best multi-cam system
Swann Enforcer
4 out of 5 stars
4
  • pro
    4 HD cameras
  • pro
    1TB DVR storage

Just about everything these days follows a subscription model, from streaming services to meal delivery kits. Unfortunately, that trend also extends to security cameras, with brands like Ring, Nest and Arlo making it all but necessary to pay monthly fees to unlock certain features or cloud storage for security footage.

Thankfully, there are a few brands bucking that trend, meaning once you've bought the camera, you won't need to fork out any extra cash. We've narrowed it down to five of the best security cameras without subscriptions.



Compare the best security cameras without subscriptions

Camera
Best for
Price
Type
Video resolutionIcon Tooltip  Dark
Field of view
Night vision
Learn more
Best overallIndoor/outdoor, battery or solar-powered 1440p (2K) 122°Colour/infrared
Best indoorIndoor, wired1440p (2K) 360° horizontal and 96° vertical Infrared
Best outdoorOutdoor, wired1080p100°Colour/Infrared
Best budget Indoor, wired 1080p 360° horizontal and 114° verticalInfrared
Best multi-cam system Indoor and outdoor, wired 1080p90°Colour/Infrared

Price is accurate as of post date. Read full disclaimer.

1. Reolink Argus 3 Pro: Best fee-free security camera overall

Best overall
Reolink Argus 3
Reolink Argus 3 Pro
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5
$208.99
Price is accurate as of post date. Read full disclaimer.

The Reolink Argus 3 Pro is our favourite wireless security camera overall, so it's not surprising that it's also our top pick for security cameras without monthly fees.

This powerhouse boasts many of the same features as some cameras that cost over $100 extra, like the Nest Cam Battery's smart motion detection and Arlo Pro 4's colour night vision.

Of course, what really sets the Argus 3 Pro apart are its storage options. With up to 128GB of local storage thanks to its microSD card slot and seven days of free cloud storage, you won't miss a thing.

pro
Pros
pro Battery and solar powered options
pro 2K video resolution
pro Free local and cloud storage
con
Cons
con Field of view could be wider

2. Eufy Indoor Cam 2K: Best indoor fee-free security camera

Best indoor
Eufy Solo IndoorCam P24
Price is accurate as of post date. Read full disclaimer.

The Eufy Indoor Cam 2K punches well above its sub-$130 price, boasting 2K video resolution, pan and tilt functionality for greater coverage, two-way talk, activity zones, motion tracking and more.

It's smart enough to be able to differentiate between humans and pets and can even send you alerts when it detects excessive noise levels, making it a great baby monitor. It's also compatible with Alexa, Google Home and HomeKit so can be easily integrated into your smart home setup.

The best part, of course, is that Eufy doesn't lock any of these features behind a paywall. Unfortunately they don't offer any free cloud storage, but simply pop in a microSD card (up to 128GB) and you're set.

pro
Pros
pro 2K video resolution
pro Pan and tilt functionality
pro Motion tracking
con
Cons
con No free cloud storage
Light Bulb
Which security camera brands don't need a subscription?

Just about every security camera brand will tell you that you don't need a subscription in order to use their products. While that may be true, popular brands like Ring, Arlo and Nest make it all but impossible to avoid subscribing by locking certain features and cloud storage behind a paywall.

Our favourite security camera brands that don't need a subscription are Reolink, Eufy, and Swann.

3. Reolink Lumus: Best outdoor fee-free security camera

Best outdoor
Reolink Lumus
Reolink Lumus
4.3 out of 5 stars
4.25
$86.99
Price is accurate as of post date. Read full disclaimer.

Not only is the Reolink Lumus our pick for the best subscription-free outdoor security camera, it's also one of our favourite cheap security cameras thanks to its budget-friendly price.

With HD video resolution, PIR motion detection, two-way talk, a bright LED spotlight, siren and IP65 water and dust resistance, the Lumus offers incredible value for money.

On the downside, since it isn't battery-powered, you'll need a power point nearby, which can limit placement options. We'd also love if it had a wider field of view, but 100 degrees should be fine for most people.

pro
Pros
pro Colour night vision
pro Affordable price
pro Free local and cloud storage
con
Cons
con Wired installation only
con Narrow field of view

4. TP-Link Tapo C200: Best budget fee-free security camera

Best budget
Price is accurate as of post date. Read full disclaimer.

The TP-Link Tapo C200 has featured in many of our 'best' lists, simply for the fact that, at under $60, there's no better deal out there for a basic security camera.

It's essentially a cheaper, less advanced version of the Eufy Indoor Cam 2K above, and though we prefer Eufy's version, the Tapo C200 is ideal for those on a strict budget.

You get HD video quality, pan and tilt functionality, two-way talk, night vision, motion detection, and up to 128GB of local storage. Unfortunately, if you want motion tracking (to keep an eye on a cheeky pet, for example), activity zones or cloud storage, you'll have to fork out for the Tapo Care subscription. Still, since it's perfectly usable without these features, it still has a place on our list.

pro
Pros
pro Cheap
pro Pan and tilt functionality
pro Two-way talk
con
Cons
con Some optional features require subscription

5. Swann Enforcer: Best fee-free multi-cam security system

Best multi-cam system
Price is accurate as of post date. Read full disclaimer.

If you're looking to set up whole-house monitoring without spending thousands of dollars, the Swann Enforcer 4 Camera system is a great place to start.

This multi-pack comes with four HD cameras capable of recording colour night vision and car and people sensing for fewer false alarms. But what we love most is the included 1TB DVR which continues recording even if the internet goes out.

On the downside, the Swann Enforcer system is wired only, and for beginners, professional installation by an electrician is recommended. The cameras also have one of the narrowest fields of view you'll find in the market at just 90 degrees.

pro
Pros
pro Includes 4 cameras and 1TB DVR
pro Police-style security lights
pro Colour night vision
con
Cons
con Wired installation only
con Narrow field of view

Final word

The Reolink Argus 3 Pro is an unbeatable all-rounder for anyone looking to avoid monthly subscription fees. With fantastic video quality, multiple power options, free cloud storage and more, you'd be hard-pressed to find a better deal.


Disclaimer
Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time of publish and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on the retailer’s website at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product. SafeWise Australia utilises paid affiliate links.
Georgia Dixon
Written by
Georgia Dixon

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