Ring’s latest smart doorbell, the Video Doorbell Pro 2 ($249.99), offers a few features you won't find on the company's other models, including 3D motion detection and a Bird’s Eye View that gives you an aerial picture of motion events. It also delivers very sharp video and accurate motion detection, and it works with Amazon Alexa voice commands and plenty of third-party smart home devices. That said, it's also one of Ring's priciest models at $250, and you have to subscribe to a Ring Protect plan in order to access certain features and view recorded video. It's a solid choice if you own other Ring devices and want a doorbell with all of the most advanced features, though the $99.99 Ezviz DB1C is an excellent alternative (and our Editors' Choice award winner) for far less money.
The Video Doorbell Pro 2 shares a similar design to its predecessor, the Video Doorbell Pro, which we reviewed back in 2018. It measures 4.4 by 1.9 by 0.8 inches (HWD) and has a Satin Nickel cover and a glossy black camera face. The face also holds a microphone, an ambient light sensor, and a doorbell button bordered by an LED ring that glows blue when the button is pressed. A small speaker is located on the bottom edge.Our Experts Have Tested 37 Products in the Home Security Cameras Category in the Past YearSince 1982, PCMag has tested and rated thousands of products to help you make better buying decisions. (See how we test.)
Around back are two wiring terminals, and under the removable faceplate are a reset button and a QR code for use with the initial setup. The Pro 2 uses dual-band Wi-Fi to connect to your home network and requires a standard 16-24 volt AC power transformer. Included in the box are the doorbell, a Torx screwdriver for securing the faceplate, mounting screws, an angled wedge adapter, a power cable adapter, a user guide, and a quick start guide.
The camera captures 1536p HDR video and has a 150-degree horizontal and a 150-degree vertical field of view. This gives it a 1:1 aspect ratio that allows you to view a head-to-toe image of whomever is at your door. The camera supports color night vision and Pre-Roll video that lets you view what took place just before the motion sensor was triggered.4.0Excellent $89.99 See Itat AmazonRead Our Ezviz DB1C Wi-Fi Video Doorbell Review 4.0Excellent$99.00See Itat AmazonRead Our RemoBell S Review 4.0Excellent $179.99See Itat AmazonRead Our Arlo Essential Video Doorbell Wire-Free Review 4.0Excellent $149.99See Itat AmazonRead Our Lorex 2K QHD Wired Video Doorbell Review 3.5Good $229.99See Itat Best BuyRead Our Nest Doorbell (Wired) Review 4.0Excellent $199.99See Itat AmazonRead Our Ring Video Doorbell 3 Plus Review4.0Excellent $34.99See Itat AmazonRead Our Vivint Doorbell Camera Pro Review 3.5Good $99.99See Itat AmazonRead Our Ring Video Doorbell (2020) Review 3.5Good $59.99See Itat AmazonRead Our Ring Video Doorbell Wired Review 3.5Good $169.00See Itat SimpliSafeRead Our SimpliSafe Video Doorbell Pro Review
The Pro 2 also offers Ring’s new 3D Motion Detection and Birds’ Eye View radar technology, which work together to provide more accurate motion detection while letting you see where visitors to your home have traveled while on your property. Bird’s Eye motion events show up as dots on an aerial map that show the path taken by the visitor. Yellow dots represent the current path of the visitor and will gradually become redder and more transparent before disappearing after a few seconds.
The Video Doorbell Pro 2 works with other Ring doorbell and security cameras, the Ring Alarm security system, and Ring lighting devices. In addition, it uses IFTTT applets to interact with third-party smart devices such as light bulbs, plugs, and locks. It doesn’t work with Apple HomeKit or Google Assistant, but it does integrate nicely with the Amazon Alexa platform and supports Alexa Greetings that allow Alexa to answer the door for you with a preprogrammed message. You can also view video streams on an Amazon Echo Show smart display.
As with every other Ring doorbell, the Pro 2 requires a Ring Protect subscription in order to view recorded video and to take advantage of features such as People Only Mode, Rich Notifications, and AdvancedPre-Roll, which gives you a six-second color video of events, with sound, that occur before a motion trigger (regular Pre-Roll gives you four seconds of black-and-white video with no audio). You also need a subscription to use Alexa Greetings.
The Basic Plan gives you 60 days of rolling storage for one camera and goes for $3 per month or $30 per year. The Plus Plan costs $10 per month or $100 per year and provides 60 days of storage for all of your Ring cameras.
The Pro 2 uses the same mobile app (for Android and iOS) as all other Ring devices. It appears in its own panel on the dashboard screen, along with panels for all of your installed Ring products. At the top of the dashboard are Disarmed, Home, and Away buttons, and below those are buttons that will take you to the Neighbors screen where you can view events from the Ring community, and to the History screen that displays a list of motion events and video clips of each event. You can add buttons for other supported devices including garage door openers, Ring lights, and the Ring Alarm system.
Tap the doorbell panel to view a live stream with buttons for two-way talk, speaker muting, and full-screen viewing. Below the video panel is an event timeline you can scroll through to find an event that occurred at a specific time of day. To access the doorbell’s settings screen, tap the gear icon in the upper right corner. Here you can enable/disable Ring Alerts, Motion Alerts, and Motion Detection, and change Mode settings (Disarmed, Home, Away). You can also link the doorbell to other installed Ring devices to have cameras begin recording or have lights turn on when motion is detected.
Other options include Motion Settings that let you adjust sensitivity levels, configure 3D Motion range and Bird’s Eye View settings, and enable People Only Mode. Device Settings is where you can configure Video, Notification, and Privacy options. There’s also a button for configuring Smart Responses, where you can enable Alexa Greetings to have Alexa do things like provide directions for deliveries or take a message. You can also have the doorbell use Ring Quick Replies to deliver greetings and take messages.
Physically installing the Video Doorbell Pro 2 was relatively easy, but pairing it with the app was problematic in our tests. This is a wired doorbell, so if you’re not comfortable working with low-voltage (doorbell) wiring, you might want to have someone do it for you.
I already had the Ring app installed on my phone, but if this is your first Ring device you’ll have to download the app and create an account. You can view an installation tutorial in the app or just go ahead and get started.
I began by shutting off the breaker circuit that supplies power to my doorbell wiring and proceeded to remove my old doorbell. I removed the cover from the Pro 2, connected the two wires to the terminal, attached the base to the siding of my house, and powered up the circuit. I opened the app, tapped the three-bar icon in the upper left corner, tapped Set Up a Device, and selected Doorbells. Following the on-screen instructions, I used my phone’s camera to scan the QR code on the doorbell and it was immediately recognized. I gave it a name and confirmed that it was physically installed and that the LED was spinning, but the app was unable to connect to the doorbell.
At this point the app became stuck in a loop that always brought me back to the setup screen. I tried uninstalling the app and resetting the doorbell, but each time I did the results were the same. I finally called tech support, and after a series of hardware and account verification resets I was able to complete the install, but it had to be done manually without scanning the QR code.
Once installed, the Video Doorbell Pro 2 worked as intended. The camera delivers razor-sharp day and night video, although color night vision isn't nearly as vibrant as daytime color. Motion detection is very accurate, with no false alerts when set to People Only Mode, and the Bird’s Eye View feature works as advertised, showing the path of visitors to my doorstep. Two-way audio is loud and clear as well.
The Alexa Greeting feature works reasonably well, but when you answer the door in person you have to tell Alexa to stop in order to interrupt the greeting. Finally, the doorbell responded instantly to my Alexa voice commands to display video on an Amazon Echo Show.
As with any smart doorbell, the Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 will let you see who is at your doorstep and answer visitors without having to open the door, but it’s the only model that offers an aerial view of where visitors have traveled while on your property. The 1536p camera delivered very sharp video in testing with spot-on motion detection, and the doorbell worked well with Alexa voice commands and Alexa Greetings. We had some trouble pairing the device to the app, but your mileage may vary. If you want the latest in smart doorbell technology, the Video Doorbell Pro 2 is an excellent choice.
That said, you can save a considerable amount with the $99.99 Ezviz DB1C, which also delivers high-resolution (1526p) video and a wide vertical viewing angle, as well as intelligent alerts, local and cloud video storage, and support for Alexa, Google Assistant, and IFTTT. And for the same price, you can go wireless with standard the Ring Video Doorbell, which is much easier to install, but doesn't offer many of the advanced features (such as Pre-Roll recording or even dual-band Wi-Fi) that you get with the Pro 2.4.0See It$249.99 at AmazonMSRP $249.99View More
Ring’s $250 Video Doorbell Pro 2 offers lots of bells and whistles including highly detailed video, 3D motion detection, and a unique aerial view of motion activity.
Sign up for Lab Report to get the latest reviews and top product advice delivered right to your inbox.
Your subscription has been confirmed. Keep an eye on your inbox!