What’s the Difference Between Indoor and Outdoor Cameras?

With all the choices out there, it can be difficult to know which cameras best suit your needs. One of the first things to understand is the difference between indoor and outdoor cameras. The primary distinction between indoor and outdoor security cameras is the types of external factors each camera has to be able to withstand. 

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outdoor security camera with house and trees behind

Outdoor cameras

While both types of cameras usually come in similar styles and with comparable features, outdoor cameras need to be able to contend with all types of weather and varying light conditions.

Outdoor cameras are also more vulnerable to being tampered with, so they typically have more durable materials, like metal, and may be heavier or even housed in a casing in order to discourage easy removal.

Indoor cameras

Indoor cameras can be smaller, more lightweight and are usually less intrusive than bulkier outdoor cameras. Both indoor and outdoor cameras utilize features like infrared, allowing for clear pictures in low light conditions and easy transitions when there is a sudden change in light-changing automatically from color images in bright light to black and white when it gets darker.

Other types of cameras

Dome cameras are also common for both indoor and outdoor use. Dome cameras are designed to keep the onlooker from knowing exactly where the lens is pointed, which keeps people from easily hiding from the camera. Domes also provide an extra level of protection for cameras that are mounted outside. In addition, there are outside cameras that come with blowers and heaters to provide extra protection against the elements.

If you are looking for a hidden camera that is concealed in something like a smoke detector, exit sign or clock, it is important to know that most are not weatherproof and therefore not suitable for outdoor use. Hidden cameras are better for covert indoor surveillance whereas outdoor cameras are usually noticeable, their very presence being an extra deterrent for bad behavior.

Final word

When considering the safety of your family and property, security cameras can add an extra level of comfort. In order to make sure you choose the best camera for your needs, consider checking out our wireless security camera reviews to get the type of security cam you need for a price that won’t break the bank.


Compare the best wireless security cameras

Product
Best for
Price
Cloud storage price
Video resolutionIcon Tooltip  Dark
Type
Learn more
Read review
Best overallStarts at $4.99/mo.1440p (2K) Indoor/outdoor wire-free
Best budget Starts at $1.99/mo.1080p Indoor/outdoor wired
Best for smart home Starts at $2.99/mo.1440p (2K) Indoor/outdoor wire-free
Best tech Starts at $6.00/mo.1080pIndoor/outdoor wire-free
Best indoor camera Starts at $2.99/mo.1920p (2K)Indoor wired

*Amazon.com price as of post date.

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.

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Celeste Tholen
Written by
Celeste Tholen
Celeste has dedicated her decade-long career to reporting and reviews that help people make well-informed decisions. She oversees editorial strategy and production for SafeWise, with a goal to help everyone find the information they need to make their homes and lives safer. Prior to SafeWise, she worked as an editor and reporter for KSL and Deseret News. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Journalism. In her free time, she volunteers at the local botanical garden and writers for the community newspaper.

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