Best Power Over Ethernet (POE) Video Doorbells [UK Guide]

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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.

Quick Summary

Image Summary  
Best Overall:
Ring Video Doorbell Elite
  • Durable with an IPx5 rating
  • Advanced motion detection for monitoring key areas
  • Supports both Alexa and Google Home
Runner Up:
Doorbird D101
  • Trusted brand used by professional home builders
  • Free cloud storage for most recent 50 visitors

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:

More reliable internet connection – A wired connection is always more reliable than a WiFi connection, especially in larger homes where coverage may be intermittent.
Easier to install ethernet cables than power cables – you don’t need a qualified electrician to install ethernet cables as there is no live electrical supply until a POE device is detected. Installation is easily done by an amateur. Of course, you can use an electrician if you prefer. Maintenance is also much cheaper as you can do most repairs yourself.
Centralised power supply – if you connect all of your video doorbells and cameras to a central PSE, you can ensure they remain functional in the event of a power cut by having a backup power supply for your security system.
Less choice of doorbells – by far the biggest disadvantage in this case is the limited range of POE video doorbells available. Currently there are only two products that we’d feel comfortable recommending, although there are a handful of other devices floating around the market too.
Power sourcing equipment (PSE) required – if you already have a POE security system setup then this won’t be an issue, but if your doorbell is the first device you acquire, you’ll also have to fork out for PSE to supply power.

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

IPx5 rating is extremely weatherproof
Advanced motion detection
1080p video quality
Supports POE+
Ongoing subscription required for access to cloud storage

Key specs:

  • 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+.


Doorbird D101

If you’re looking to avoid an ongoing subscription, the Doorbird D101 is another great device, although with slightly fewer features

Fast and reliable – a brand used by professionals
Free cloud storage for most recent 50 visitors
Integrate with other Doorbird products
Wide camera angle
720p video quality is lower than Ring Elite
IP54 rating isn’t as resistant to weather as Ring Elite
Does not integrate with Alexa or Google Home (manufacturer is working on this)

Key specs:

  • 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.


FAQ’s

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.