The Best Infrared Cameras of 2020

These cameras will let you see clearly at night in black and white.

Aliza Vigderman Gabe TurnerChief Editor
Last Updated on May 21, 2020

There are many advantages to getting a security camera with infrared LED lights, the most obvious being superior night vision. Unlike bright white lights, which tell the whole world of your security camera’s presence, infrared LED sensors are subtle, so you’ll be able to see people well and not the other way around. They also can be useful for home inspections, telling you tons of important information about your home’s heating systems, cooling systems, and more. I’ve reviewed dozens of home security cameras so I’m excited to bring you the best infrared options. Let’s get started with the best infrared cameras review now!

Best Infrared Cameras

Infrared Camera Methodology

Kasa Spot Camera Night Vision
Kasa Spot Camera Night Vision

When I review any camera, I always go by our Necessary Features Test, which judges cameras based on the following factors:

  • Video: I prefer cameras with the industry standard of 1080p HD video, the ability to zoom in optically, plus a field of view of 120 degrees or wider.
  • Audio: Security cameras should come with two-way audio, which allows the user to speak through the camera using its mobile application.
  • Night vision: I also make sure that the night vision is infrared rather than color from a bright white light, as that can be very conspicuous.
  • Storage: Cameras should come with both cloud and local storage so you can back up your footage in multiple ways.
  • Smart platform integrations: If you’re already in the Amazon, Google, or Apple smart home ecosystems, then you’ll want a camera that lets you use your voice assistants to control it.
  • Artificial Intelligence: I also look for cameras with person detection, which means that they can differentiate between people and other moving objects like cars, animals, etc. This leads to more specific and necessary notifications so you can put as little effort into monitoring your home as possible while still staying on top of things. Extra points if the camera has facial recognition!
  • Value: I’ve reviewed dozens of security cameras ranging from $20 to $400, but I’d say the median price is between $100 and $200.
  • Convenience: The camera should be easy to install and easy to use, with a highly-rated app from either the Apple or Google Play stores, depending on your mobile device.

To see a more detailed camera methodology, scroll down to the bottom of the best security cameras of 2020.

Infrared Camera Tips

So what are some best practices when installing and using your infrared camera? Out of all my experiences, here are some quick tips:

Power Backup

Cellular Backup
Cellular Backup

If you’ve ever wondered what happens to your security camera if the electricity goes out, then you should definitely learn about some backup plans. The most common is cellular backup, which uses the data from your phone to connect your camera to its mobile application, rather than Wi-Fi. There’s also battery backup or landline backup if you still have a landline in your home. With any security camera, it’s important to think of a Plan B in case of a power outage in your neighborhood.

Professional Monitoring

Professional Monitoring
Professional Monitoring

Even with mobile notifications, it can be hard to deal with every notification you get from your security camera, especially if you’re otherwise occupied. That’s where 24/7 professional monitoring comes in. For an additional monthly or yearly fee, you can get a team of people to check-in after an alarm goes off when your camera is armed. If you’re not available to deal with the situation, the monitoring team can contact emergency services for you, be it the police, your local hospital, or even the fire department. Not all security cameras have options for professional monitoring, but I always recommend it if it’s available.

IP Rating

IP RatingsSolidsLiquids
0Not ProtectedNone
1A large body surface like the back of a hand, but no intentional contact with a body partDripping water falling vertically
2Fingers of similar objectsDripping water falling from 15-degree tilt
3Tools, thick wires, etc.Spraying water
4Most wires, screws, etcSplashing water
5Dust protectedWater jets 6.3mm and below
6Dust-tightPowerful water jets 12.5mm and below
7N/AImmersion up to 1m
8N/AImmersion over 1m

If your infrared camera is outdoor, you have to worry about two more factors: the camera’s temperature range along with its IP rating. The temperature range is pretty straightforward, but IP ratings are a bit more complicated, consisting of two digits. While the first digit refers to the camera’s susceptibility towards solids, the second digit refers to liquids, important if you live in a place that gets rain or snow. Make sure your camera is durable enough to handle any weather that your area can throw at it in order to protect your investment.

Recap of the Best Infrared Cameras of 2020

That’s it for the top infrared cameras of the year! If you’re still unsure of which security camera you want, check out my list of the best indoor cameras for artificial intelligencethe best wireless cameras of 2020, or the best outdoor cameras of 2020.

FAQs about Infrared Cameras