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Which Video Doorbells Work For Gates?

Video doorbells are essentially ordinary doorbells with the combined functionality of a security camera and an intercom. Using the doorbell’s app you can be alerted when someone has approached your door, view a live video feed, and send an audio message.  Most video doorbells are made for front doors, but I can’t think of a better place for them than on a front gate!

Video doorbells designed for front entrance ways are not all easily fitted to gates. Many rely on a strong Wifi connection, which can be extremely difficult to establish from a gate. Often people report buying video doorbells, installing them, and then failing to get a decent signal. This occurs regardless of how close their router is, or how many range extenders they may have. In order to get around this problem here we compare two video doorbells that connect via ethernet instead of Wifi. The Ring Doorbell Elite and the Doorbird D101.

Now, you may be thinking: What? Ethernet cables? What is this the dark ages? No this isn’t the dark ages! This is just a practical way to get large amounts of information(two way audio & one way video) from any gate to the router in your house. The two doorbells included here use POE (via cat 5/6) to connect to the internet and give them power. While many homes are not fitted with POE, it provides the best option for establishing a decent connection to far away locations like a gate.

The Ring and Doorbird are two very similar products, divided only by a few key features. Both have the ability to send live video to your smartphone when the bell is rung, then enable two-way audio using an on board speaker. Both offer cloud storage so you can record video using your doorbell, and retrieve it later. If you’re not around to check the live feed at a particular moment, you can just check what you have stored on the cloud! This can be a real lifesaver in a number of situations. One is a breakin. If your doorbell was in the right place to have captured the face of a burglar, but didn’t do so because you weren’t recording anything, you have nothing to show to the police. Cloud storage also allows you to locate footage even if your device is stolen.

1. Ring Doorbell Elite

Price:                            $500
Video Quality :             1080p
Field Of View:              160° horizontal, 90° vertical

Features:

  • Full HD & night vision
  • Two-way audio with noise cancellation
  • Motion Sensing with custom motion zones
  • Weatherproofing

Pros:

  • Easy installation & integration with smart home hubs like Alexa
  • Unmatched video quality

Cons:

  • High price point

The true appeal of the Ring Doorbell Elite lies in how easy it makes perimeter security. Ring does this by having a simple and well serviced app, seamless connection to smart home hubs, and offering comprehensive cloud storage/professional monitoring plans. The basic storage plan is available for $3 a month. The “plus” plan, which includes 24/7 monitoring, police dispatch, and cloud storage is $10 a month.

The biggest drawback to the Ring Doorbell Elite is the price. The ring doorbell elite is designed to be rings “Commercial Solution” that is fitted with power over ethernet and other features. That being said, the Ring Elite is basically just the Ring Video Doorbell Pro(~$200) with POE capability. The steep price upgrade of ~$250 is hard to justify with the addition of just one feature.

2. Doorbird D101

Price:                            $349
Video Quality :             720p

Features:

  • Video range up to 26 feet
  • Weatherproofing (IP65)
  • Camera and motion sensor have a 180 degree viewing angle
  • Night Vision
  • Motion Sensing

Pros:

  • Less expensive than the Ring Elite
  • Ability to connect to electric door opener/strike

Cons:

  • Harder to integrate with Smart Home Hubs

The Doorbird D101 may be the premier product if you’re looking to create a smart gate with the installation of only one product. They have been making commercial video intercoms for years, and have released the D101 appeal to homeowners looking for a video doorbell. So right off the bat you know you’re getting a reliable product whose components have survived the test of commercial use. Their video doorbells are fitted with weatherproofing and ethernet connection, but most importantly the Doorbird D101 has an option to connect directly to an electric door openers. This means with one device you can monitor your gate, talk to anyone that rings the bell, and unlock your gate. All from your smartphone!

Another key difference between Ring & Doorbird is smart home integration. Ring is built from the ground up to be a consumer friendly product. Their doorbells will integrate easily with smart home hubs like Amazon’s Alexa. Doorbird, on the other hand, will take a few extra steps to get it integrated with other smart home automation products.

If you’re crafting a completely automated smart home or smart perimeter, or are looking for superb video quality, the Ring Doorbell Elite will save you a lot of hassle. On the other hand, if you’re looking for a simple and modern solution to gate security that can be accomplished from one device – the the Doorbird D101 may be your best bet.