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Ring Spotlight Cam vs. Smart Spotlight: Which should you buy?

Ring Spotlight Cam

Ring Spotlight Cam

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The Ring Spotlight Cam is small and compact. It has a mounting base with an adjustable ball joint so it can be easily mounted in any position you see fit and adjusted as required. The two-way audio means you can speak to whoever is at your property from wherever you are. Plus you can remotely activate a 110-decibel siren. However, battery life is not quite as long as it says on paper.

Ring Spotlight Cam

Smart security camera

Reasons to buy

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Quick and easy installation
+
2-way audio communication
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Adjustable motion detection zones

Reasons to avoid

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Poor battery life
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Waterdroplets can obscure camera view

Ring Smart Spotlight

Ring Smart Spotlight

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The Ring Smart Spotlight is part of Ring's new smart lighting lineup. It's a spotlight. It's job is to illuminate the areas you'd like to keep an eye on whenever motion is detected. It's battery powered so you can install it almost anywhere and installation is quick and easy.

Ring Smart Spotlight

Spotlighting

Reasons to buy

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Quick and easy installation
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Can install pretty much anywhere

Reasons to avoid

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Battery life

Both products are spotlights but the Spotlight Cam also comes with a security camera. It's got the added bonus of being able to show you exactly what is happening when it detects motion.

All about lights

As the name suggests, the Spotlight Cam is a security camera with the addition of a spotlight. When motion is detected the light comes on and the camera rolls. You are then notified when this happens and you can use the Ring App to view exactly what is happening in real time. The two-way audio means not only can you hear them, you can speak to them too. If it's an unwanted guest, you can get them to go away or just let them be aware that you can see exactly what they are doing.

At the same time you can activate an alarm on the device too. The spotlight is made up of two LED strips that are situated either side of the camera. They provide decent lighting at 300 lumens. You can set the lights to just come on only during the dark hours, saving battery power.

The Smart Spotlight is part of Ring's new smart lighting range. In this case, you're only getting a spotlight; there is no added camera. The Smart Spotlight is motion activated, but is also able to be tied into your Ring System with a Ring Bridge. You'll need to buy a Ring Bridge separately, but it allows you to have smarter controls via the Ring App. This means that you can set the motion detection zones and be notified when motion is detected. The Bridge also acts like a central hub for all Ring products so you can connect each light and/or camera to each other for a better security system for you home. One light can activate another light, or activate a camera and which can then give you a better view of what's going on.

Battery-powered

Both the Spotlight Cam and Smart Spotlight are battery-powered, which means that installation is quick and easy but the places you can install it are limitless - to an extent and we will get to that later. There are wired versions of each spotlight available and both will require a junction box to connect to. The wired versions offer brighter lights than the battery-powered versions. For versatility, you might want to opt for the battery-powered versions.

On paper, Ring has stated that the battery life on either spotlight is up to 1 year, however, users are saying that they get a lot less battery life with the spotlights. The Spotlight Cam comes with one battery although there is space for two batteries to fit in. The Smart Spotlight takes 4 D-cell batteries, however, these are not included in the box.

Spotlight CamSmart Spotlight
Power sourceValueValue
CameraYesNo
Battery Lifeup to 1 yearup to 1 year
Lumens300400
Motion DetectionYesYes
2-way audioYesNo
Smart controlsYesYes (but requires Ring Bridge)

So which should you buy?

Since both are outdoor lights, they are built to hold up to the weather, however, there is one thing to note about the Spotlight Cam. You may want to install it in a place where it won't get too wet by the rain. There have been some instances where water droplets have obscured the camera view. That might be the deal breaker for some but those instances are far fewer than the norm, so it could be the odd faulty product.

Deciding on which one to get depends on exactly what you are looking for. The Spotlight Cam provides you with real time video whenever motion is detected. This means you can see exactly what is happening at home, especially when you are away from your house. So, if you're looking for a security camera with a spotlight, then the Spotlight Cam is for you. If all you want is a spotlight from a well known brand, then the Smart Spotlight is for you. If you're looking to expand your Ring security system, then the Smart Spotlight is a great addition to that. Coupled with the Ring Bridge, the possibilities could be endless as you group together your Ring lights. The Ring Bridge (opens in new tab) does cost $50 but you only need one per household. That allows you to receive notifications whenever the Smart Spotlight is activated and also connect the Spotlight to other Ring products you may have.