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Reviews: Keep Your Clips to Yourself With These Local Storage Security Cameras

Catching intruders in the act is one of the many specialties of today’s best security cameras. While catching them on video certainly helps, just having a security camera up and visible is a preventative measure that could dissuade potential criminals.

Video doorbells are perfect examples of this, which not only keep an eye out on your delivery packages, but they’re good deterrents against possible porch pirates contemplating their next move. But while the footage of these events is typically stored in the cloud, some people may not feel too enthused about their clips saved elsewhere. There have been many stories around unauthorized access to servers and accounts due to hackers, so it comes as no shock why some people are hesitant about cloud storage.

This is especially true for indoor cameras that have eyes inside of your home, where privacy needs to be taken more seriously. We’ve discussed the tell-tale signs when you’ve been hacked (as well as how to prevent being hacked), but it’s worth mentioning the value of security cameras with local storage.


The Best Local Storage Security Cameras At a Glance


Best Indoor Home Security Cameras With Local Storage


Reolink E1 Zoom Indoor Security Camera


Storage Type: microSD card
Cool Feature: Pans and tilts

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Reolink’s E1 Zoom is one versatile indoor camera with local storage. Not only can it save all video events onto a microSD card for convenience, but it’s one of the few cameras that can pan and tilt. This certainly helps give it more coverage, especially when its field of view is narrower than most static indoor cameras.


GE CYNC Indoor Smart Security Camera


Storage Type: microSD card
Cool Feature: Manual privacy shutter
Read More: The Best Security Cameras with Privacy Shutters

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Sure, you wouldn’t think of GE as one of the prominent players in the security camera space, but the company has been investing a lot in the last couple of years with its Cync portfolio of smart home gadgets. One of them is the GE Cync Indoor Camera, which can save 1080p footage directly to a microSD card through a slot on the side of the camera. It’s a convenient way of accessing the footage if you don’t want cloud storage, plus it has a manual privacy shutter that can cover the camera’s view.


Google Nest Cam Wired


Storage Type: Internal memory
Cool Feature: Continues to work when Internet goes down
Review: Google Nest Cam Is No Subscription Peace Of Mind Security

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John Velasco | SPY

In addition to offering a proper outdoor camera, the Google Nest Cam Wired actually doesn’t use a microSD slot for saving clips. Instead, it relies on its own built-in storage to save its 1080p HDR videos. With this implementation, the only way to pull footage out of the camera is through the Google Home app, but we really love that it can still continue to monitor and save clips even when the internet goes offline because it offers up to three hours of event video history for free.


Arlo Go 2


Storage Type: microSD
Cool Feature: Choose between Wi-Fi or LTE connection
Review: Arlo Go 2 Works at Home, On Vacation and Anywhere You Need Security

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John Velasco | SPY

Definitely on the higher end of the price spectrum, but for good reason — there are lots of great features in this indoor security camera. For starters, even when you don’t have WiFi, you can use LTE to still see your camera footage wherever you are. And the footage will be crystal clear in 1080p. Speaking of, it also has an integrated spotlight and color night vision so you can see clearly even when the sun goes down.


Swan Wire-Free 1080p Security Camera


Storage Type: Internal memory
Cool Feature: Wire-free, can be mounted anywhere

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Similarly, the Swan Wire-Free 1080p Security Camera is a wire-free indoor camera that can be positioned on tabletops or on the wall with its included magnetic mount. Clips are stored internally and can be accessed through the Swann app, but it’s worth mentioning that its rechargeable 6,000 mAh battery allows for more versatility since it’s not being tied down by a charging wire.


Best Video Doorbell With Local Storage


Google Nest Doorbell


Storage Type: Internal storage
Cool Feature: Free three-hour video history
Read More: The Best Video Doorbells To Stop Package Thieves

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John Velasco | SPY

Many companies have subscription-based models with their line of cameras, which allows for clips to be stored in the cloud for a period of time. If you’re not looking to add to your monthly costs, the Google Nest Doorbell has the ability to save its 960 x 1280 HDR clips internally without forcing users to sign up for a subscription. While Google’s Nest Aware subscription adds many more benefits, the Nest Doorbell offers up to three hours of video history for free out of the box.


Blink Video Doorbell


Storage Type: USB flash drive via Blink Sync Module 2
Cool Feature: Battery-powered
Review: The Blink Video Doorbell Is a Strong Ring Competitor

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William Goodman | SPY

If you do your research, you won’t find many models that use microSD cards to save clips. That’s because it would require users to constantly remove the doorbell from its mount, which can be frustrating on its own. The battery-powered Blink Video Doorbell saves 1080p clips to a USB flash drive via the Blink Sync Module 2. It’s a tiny hub that’s kept indoors so that the clips are always in your possession.


Eufy Security Video Doorbell


Storage Type: Internal storage via HomeBase
Cool Feature: Crisp 2K resolution

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Going above and beyond most models, the Eufy Security Video Doorbell offers 2K resolution for even more detail with captured clips than your traditional 1080p camera. It saves them to the included HomeBase, which packs 16GB of internal storage and features military-grade encryption. You might think that capacity is on the leaner side, but you can always delete clips if you want to free up space.


Best Outdoor Security Cameras With Local Storage


Wyze Cam Outdoor


Storage Type: MicroSD card
Cool Feature: Offline mode
Read More: Eufy vs. Wyze

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John Velasco | SPY

The Wyze Cam Outdoor is one of the most versatile cameras with local storage. This 1080p capable security camera can work indoors and outdoors since it’s battery-powered and saves clips via its built-in microSD slot. We really love the fact that it can also operate offline. Meaning, it can still work to detect motion when you’re not around — and then save those clips to a microSD card, all without any internet connection whatsoever.


Blink Outdoor


Storage Type: USB flash drive via Blink Sync Module 2
Cool Feature: Two-year battery life

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John Velasco | SPY

No one has time to constantly recharge wireless cameras. Luvkily, the Blink Outdoor can operate for upwards of two years before its batteries need to be replaced. Just know that it takes two AA lithium batteries for the best results. More importantly, though, is that it can save 1080p video clips to a USB flash drive through the Blink Sync Module 2. Pop one into the port and then conveniently preview the footage on a computer.


Eufy Solocam E20


Storage Type: Internal storage
Cool Feature: No subscription required

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When everything is done on-device, you can rest easy knowing that your clips won’t be accessible from outside sources. The Eufy Solocam E20 has no hidden cost or subscription, so storing its 1080p clips is done internally with its 8GB capacity. That means when you buy it, you’ll not only have access to local storage, but also to advanced features like people detection, 90 dB siren, and smart home control with support for Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.


How We Chose the Best Local Storage Security Cameras

For this roundup, we tested over 20 security cameras consisting of video doorbells, outdoor security cameras, and indoor models. We’ve spent at least a week testing them out, with some over a period of months to really get a feel of how they work. Additionally, we made sure to test out models from a wide range of brands — from established makers like Ring and Google, to security camera makers like Swann and Reolink.

There are some major benefits to owning a local storage security camera, the main one being to truly own the footage that is captured and be able to view it whenever you want. All the models we’ve listed offer local storage by either saving clips internally, onto a hub, or to a microSD card.  Beyond that, here are some other criteria we used to choose the best local storage security cameras:

Storage – Many offer MicroSD storage options. For those that have internal storage, we chose options that have at least three hours of video storage. When you consider that many “triggering” event clips are only 10 seconds or so, that’s plenty of internal storage.

Battery Power – Running off battery has its perks, mainly because security cameras can continue to function in the event of power outages.

Field of View – Cameras with wider lenses are much better than narrow ones because they’ll be able to watch over larger spaces.

Video Quality – Security cameras are only as good as their performance, which is why video quality matters. Sharp details and fantastic dynamic range are some of the characteristics we like to find.

Installation – The last thing you need to happen is being frustrated because a cameras is tough to set up. That’s why we paid attention to which ones were simple and straightforward.

Additional Features – We looked for additional features that set the cameras apart. Additional features are icing on the cake that make each camera more appealing.


Benefits of a Security Camera With Local Storage

  • All of the footage stays with you.
  • Better for security and privacy.
  • Some cameras don’t need an internet connection to work.
  • They’re perfect for vacations.
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John Velasco | SPY

All of the above is straight to the point when it comes to pointing out the benefits of the best security cameras with local storage. Ideally, you’ll want to find a security camera that saves clips onto a microSD card, which comes in handy for the convenience of quickly popping them into your computer to review the footage. However, not all cameras save footage this way. In fact, some models require a separate hub to do this, while others just have internal local storage.

Editor’s note: This was last updated on September 21, 2022, where we rearranged the listing based on our new testing procedure.


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