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Best Cheap Security Cameras Under $50

You don’t have to pay a small fortune for the peace of mind that comes with a security camera. We found the top seven cheap security cameras you can trust under $50.
Written by | Updated March 31, 2020
Top Pick
Zosi 720p cameraZOSI 720P CCTV Camera
  • Cheapest of the cheap
  • Reliable inside and outdoors
  • Cheapest of the cheap
  • Reliable inside and outdoors
Smart Cam Pick
Wyze Cam Pan product imageWyze Cam Pan
  • Works with Alexa
  • Scans entire rooms
  • Works with Alexa
  • Scans entire rooms
Outdoor Pick
SV3C Outdoor Wi-Fi CameraSV3C Outdoor Wi-Fi Camera
  • Night vision up to 67 ft.
  • Two-way audio
  • Night vision up to 67 ft.
  • Two-way audio
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Last Updated: 5 days ago
We added some info about Wyze’s generous response to the coronavirus pandemic in its home state of Washington. We also replaced the SV3C HD Wi-Fi Security Camera Outdoor with a newer version.

Home security cameras aren’t reserved for people who can drop a wad of cash on a fancy surveillance system. If you want to add a security camera, but have a budget to stick to, this is the resource you’ve been looking for.

We found five cheap security cameras that deliver high-quality reliability—and they’re all under $50. 

Compare Cheap Security Cameras

Night Vision
Two-Way Communication
Cloud Storage
Smart Home Capability
Top Pick Smart Cam Pick Outdoor Pick Cloud Storage Pick Night Vision Pick
ZOSI 720P Wyze Cam Pan SV3C 1080p Wi-Fi YI Dome Cam Wansview Wireless 1080pv
Zosi 720p camera Wyze Cam Pan product image SV3C Outdoor Wi-Fi Camera YI Dome Security Camera Wansview Wireless 1080p Security Camera
$12.59 $37.98 $45.99 $33.99 $39.99
Up to 65 ft. Up to 30 ft. Up to 67 ft. Up to 10 ft. Up to 20 ft.











None Alexa compatible None YI Home products None
View on Amazon View on Amazon View on Amazon View on Amazon View on Amazon

*Amazon.com list price as of 03/31/20 4:03 p.m. (MT). Read full disclaimer.

Our Approach

SafeWise tests, researches, and compares products based on the factors that matter most to the people who want to use them. We get our hands on products, fall into rabbit holes of research, look up customer reviews, contact customer service, and more.

Learn more about our rankings and reviews process on our methodology page.

Best Cheap Security Camera Reviews

ZOSI 720P CCTV Camera: Top Pick

Top Pick
Zosi 720p CCTV Security Camera

Zosi 720p

This is a four-in-one security camera from ZOSI. You can use it inside and outdoors, and it’s compatible with four different video outputs.

This ZOSI security camera looks like what you expect from a security camera, which should scare away burglars who are on the prowl. And you can find plenty of videos online from customers who caught thieves in the act thanks to this versatile, cheap camera.


  • Weather-resistant design
  • 65 ft. night vision
  • Vandal-proof construction
  • Compatibility with other ZOSI cameras


  • No motion tracking
  • No mobile pan or tilt
  • No two-way audio

Wyze Cam Pan: Smart Cam Pick

Smart Cam Pick
Wyze Cam Pan product image

Wyze Cam Pan

It’s hard to believe that you can get a smart Wi-Fi camera for less than $40. But the Wyze Cam Pan delivers—and it’s become a staff favorite.

You’ll love the clear night vision images, built-in speaker for two-way audio, and smart motion tracking that follows movement from start to finish. And if you’ve got a little tyke that likes to sing themselves to sleep, you can check in remotely for a sweet serenade every night. 


  • Free rolling cloud storage
  • Voice control with Amazon Alexa
  • 360° pan and scan
  • Motion and sound detection
  • Longer power cord


  • No auto-reboot function
  • Some network security concerns
  • Hit-and-miss motion alerts

More Cheap Security from Wyze

If you want to upgrade your home security on the cheap, Wyze has a full suite of products to protect your home. Wyze Sense contact sensors ($19.99) let you guard doors, windows, cabinets, and anything else that opens. You can also add extra security with a smart light bulb from Wyze ($7.99), and the Wyze Plug ($14.99).

Plus, you can now get the Wyze Lock, which is the cheapest smart lock on the market at just $89.99.

Wyze Cam Donations

To help support small businesses in its home state of Washington during the coronavirus pandemic, Wyze is giving away free security cameras. We think Wyze’s choice to support its local community is a noteworthy example of companies stepping up during this trying time. If you live in Washington state and run a small business, head over to Wyze's website to fill out an application.

SV3C Outdoor Wi-Fi Camera: Outdoor Pick

Outdoor Pick
SV3C Outdoor Wi-Fi Camera

SV3C Outdoor Wi-Fi Camera

This outdoor IP camera lets you protect your home and property without breaking the bank.

The SV3C provides smart motion detection, high-resolution images, and the broadest night vision range of any camera on our list (up to 67 feet). And at around $46 a piece, you can afford to place a few around your property.


  • Long night vision range
  • Smart motion detection
  • Compatibility with third-party security software
  • Two-way audio


  • No smart home compatibility
  • Difficult adjustment of recording settings

YI Dome Camera: Cloud Storage Pick

Cloud Storage Pick
yi dome camera

YI Dome Cam

The YI Dome Camera makes it easy to stay on top of everything in your home when you have to be away. And you can wave goodbye to blind spots because the YI Dome Camera features a bidirectional rotation range that captures panoramic scenes.

Best of all, you can store all those sweeping images for free on the YI Cloud.


  • Unlimited rolling YI Cloud storage
  • Motion tracking
  • Video bookmarks
  • Compatibility with other YI devices
  • Noise reduction


  • App privacy concerns
  • Some firmware issues
  • No motion alert zone settings

Wansview Wireless 1080P Security Camera: Night Vision Pick

Night Vision Pick
Wansview Wireless 1080p Security Camera

Wansview Wireless 1080P Security Camera

This affordable Wansview security camera delivers a lot for under $50. You get 1080p HD resolution, a 350° pan range, and 4x digital zoom.

Plus, with two-way communication, this is a great solution if you want to check in on little humans or fur babies. And customers love how crisp the images are—even at night. But that awesome night vision only extends up to 20 feet.


  • iOS and Android mobile app
  • Smart pan and tilt function
  • Quick setup
  • Broad field of view
  • Excellent night vision clarity


  • Limited night vision range
  • No smart home capability
  • Glitchy Android app

How to Buy a Cheap Security Camera

It’s fine and good to want an affordable home security camera solution, but you don’t want to sacrifice quality for a few extra bucks in your wallet. Some of the best security cameras are still affordable. Here are our tips for buying smart on the cheap.

Know what you want from your security camera

It helps to start shopping with a goal in mind. Are you using your camera inside or outside? Do you need a camera with special talents like motion sensors or pet-friendly features?

When you’re buying cheap it helps to know in advance the features that you’re looking for. That helps you weed out cameras that don’t deliver right away.

Here are some questions to help you figure out what you want (and need) in a cheap security camera.

  • Do you want to install more than one security camera?
  • Do you want a camera to deter burglars?
  • Do you want a security camera so you can check in on people and pets when you’re not at home?
  • Is a mobile app important to you?
  • Do you want motion-activated alerts sent to your phone or email?
  • Do you want to be able to listen in and talk through the camera?
  • Are you interested in a camera that you can move around, or do you want to install it in a permanent location?
  • Are you more interested in wireless cameras, or are you okay with a power cord?
  • Is storing and saving video footage important to you? If so, do you want to use cloud storage or do you prefer an SD card?
  • Do you want to watch a live video feed?
  • Are smart home features and compatibility important to you?

Identify security camera brands that you trust

Finding high quality at low prices is a lot easier when you know which brands deliver at a lower price point.

Start with brands that you may already be familiar with, or ask trusted friends and family for recommendations. Then research expert reviews and customer ratings to see what people are saying about the camera after they’ve used it for a while.

Look out for security cameras that come with hidden costs

The purchase price posted for one camera may not be the whole story. Some security cameras are part of a bigger system and require extra equipment to function. Extras can be a base station, playback DVR, or cloud storage subscription.

Take time to read the fine print and root out any extra costs before deciding which cheap security camera is right for you.


*Amazon.com list price as of 03/31/20 4:03 p.m. (MT). Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product. Safewise.com utilizes paid Amazon links.

Certain content that appears on this site comes from Amazon. This content is provided “as is” and is subject to change or removal at any time.

Written by Rebecca Edwards

Rebecca is the lead safety reporter and in-house expert for SafeWise.com. She has been a journalist and blogger for over 25 years, with a focus on home and community safety for the past six. Rebecca spends dozens of hours every month testing and evaluating security products and strategies. Her safety expertise is sought after by publications, broadcast journalists, non-profit organizations, podcasts, and more. You can find her work and contributions in places like TechCrunch, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, HGTV, MSN, and an ever-growing library of radio and TV clips. Learn more

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