If you’re serious about your home security, chances are that you’ll have a power over ethernet (POE) security system, or will be considering heading down that route.
With power over ethernet devices, both the power and internet connection are supplied through the same wiring, a cat 5e or 6 ethernet cable that will be connected to power sourcing equipment at the other end (PSE).
There are four pairs of wires in an ethernet cable, two pairs are used for sending and receiving data whilst the remaining two will be used to send the electric current to the device.
This is a common set up for security cameras and is most frequently used where security is paramount, or where WiFi isn’t suitable. In this guide, we’ll share the pros and cons of such a set up for video doorbells and give our recommended POE video doorbells available in the UK.
Ring Video Doorbell Elite
Pros and Cons of a POE Video Doorbell
Here are the pros and cons of using POE for your video doorbell as opposed to a standard WiFi connection:
Best POE Video Doorbells
Here are the two best power over ethernet video doorbells currently available:
Ring Video Doorbell Elite
Ring is the go-to brand for video doorbells and their new Elite version includes POE along with all their usual features
- Video resolution: 1080p
- Viewing angle: 160 degrees
- Rating: IPx5
- POE standards: EEE 802.3af and 802.3at (POE+)
The Elite version of the ring video doorbell is designed to give your home professional grade security thanks to it’s use of power over ethernet technology. The product was created with home builders and those looking for advanced security for their homes, hence it does come with a higher price tag than the other ring products.
Being part of the Ring ecosystem means you’ll get access to all the great features with more being added all the time. The doorbell will work with both Alexa and Google Home for activating with your voice.
One of the big features that the Elite doorbell has vs other Ring doorbells is advanced motion detection zones that allow you to draw custom areas to monitor.
The biggest downside to Ring products is that you have to pay a subscription for cloud storage, without paying this you will not be able to watch back recorded clips from your doorbell remotely, although you will still have the live intercom features.
The Ring Elite has an IPx5 rating which is really tough as far as video doorbells go, it could withstand a jet spray which seems an unlikely scenario at your front door.
For those concerned with the technical details, the Ring Elite supports both 802.3af and 802.3at (also known as POE+). This higher technical standard allows more power to be passed though the cables and does give it another slight edge over the Doorbird which does not support POE+.
If you’re looking to avoid an ongoing subscription, the Doorbird D101 is another great device, although with slightly fewer features
- Video resolution: 720p
- Rating: IP54
- Camera angle 180 degree
- POE standard: EEE 802.3af only
Doorbird is a German company, best known for the larger intercom devices typically found in flats or apartments in the UK. However, with the D101, they’ve turned their attention to a video doorbell more suited to a typical front door.
The D101 is a solid build with IP54 rating, this isn’t as waterproof as the Ring Elite, but will still withstand splashes of water from any angle. It will support both WiFi and power over ethernet connections.
Remote live viewing is possible via the Doorbird app which provides quick alerts when it detects movement or the doorbell is rung. The response is just as fast as the Ring doorbells which is a great standard to meet. The biggest win over the Ring Elite is that it doesn’t need a subscription in order to access cloud storage, this is free for the most recent 50 visitors.
The Doorbird has a substantial 180 degree viewing angle which is ideal if you have a wide drive or want a fuller view of the door step. It also features a PIR motion sensor to detect motion activity.
The D101 will work with many of Doorbird’s other products, which means you could also purchase an intercom video station to put a screen and intercom in your house for when you are home, you won’t find anything that works like this for Ring.
How much do POE video doorbells cost?
As far as pricing goes, the two products featured here both cost around the £300-350 mark, this includes everything you need to install them except for power sourcing equipment.
Can I install a POE video doorbell myself?
Yes, POE equipment is beginner-friendly and can be installed easily at home as there are no live current electrical cables. Simply run a LAN cable (Cat 5 or higher) from your PSE to the location of your doorbell.