If you’re looking to purchase your first smart doorbell, Ring is a well-known brand that will help you add security and convenience to your home. But are the features of the Ring 2 worth it? Or will the Ring Gen 1 suit your needs just fine? We’ll go over the things they have in common and also break down the differences between the Ring vs. Ring 2 and to help you choose which is the better fit for your home.
About Ring Doorbells
Ring doorbells keep you safe and secure by protecting you against intruders and any unwanted guests. Ring lets you monitor your door no matter your location, so you never miss a visitor.
See, listen, and speak to visitors from the comfort of your smartphone, tablet, or PC. Receive instant alerts when anyone presses your doorbell or triggers the motion sensor, so you’ll always be aware when someone is approaching your home. Add to that the fact that Ring will replace your doorbell if it’s ever stolen, and it’s easy to see how these products could be a great addition to your home.
Let’s look at some of the main aspects the doorbells share, and then we’ll discuss what makes them unique.
Ring Video Doorbell — Common Features
Each device features flexible power options, in the form of a rechargeable battery and a hardwire to your existing doorbell kit. Just keep in mind that there are a few benefits to having your smart doorbell hardwired — you get to check “live video on demand” — a feature that is only available if your doorbell is hardwired. If the Ring doorbell runs out of battery power, then on-demand live view is not available.
Both models feature basic motion detection designed to detect human-sized heat signatures up to 30 feet away through passive infrared (PIR). Despite being a pretty high-tech feature, it’s easy to configure through dragging a “range” bar in the Ring app.
The Ring doorbells feature night vision, so you can keep your home secure from dusk til dawn. The only downfall of its night vision is that it records in black-and-white. So, if you’re looking for night recordings in color, check out the Skybell HD doorbell.
Regardless of which model you choose, installation is a breeze. Both the Ring and Ring Doorbell 2 integrate with a control center app on iOS, Android, and Windows 10. The doorbells also work with Amazon Echo Show. And, if you’re a Homekit person, there’s good news: Ring is looking at integrating with Homekit, however, we not sure of when exactly. But once it happens, all Ring devices will be compatible with Homekit.
Ring vs. Ring 2 — Differences
Difference #1: Video resolution – Both models feature HD resolutions, but the Ring Doorbell 2 has a better image quality with 1080p compared to the Ring’s 720p. This may not seem like a huge difference, but it actually is — having a sharper, clearer image will help identifying people at your porch easier.
Difference #2: Swappable battery – While the Ring and Ring Doorbell 2 both feature support for traditional doorbell wiring, installation is a lot faster and more convenient when you use the rechargeable battery. These two models differ, however, in how you charge said battery.
With the Ring doorbell, you pretty much need to remove the whole doorbell and bring it inside to charge. You’ll need to remove the doorbell with a screwdriver and charge it via micro-USB. But, if you looking for simpler charging option, consider getting the Ring 2.
The Ring Doorbell 2 improves upon the original Ring’s clunky charging process by featuring a swappable battery. It’s a lot easier to recharge your device when you can just take a battery out rather than removing the whole device, making the newer model much more convenient than its predecessor.
Difference #3: Battery life – As mentioned above, both doorbells have the option to run off existing doorbell wiring for non-stop power. However, if you opt to use the rechargeable battery, the Ring doorbell’s battery will last 6-12 months. Which is a longer than the Ring 2’s 6 month charge.
Difference #4: Compatible doorbell transformers – You can avoid charging RIng’s battery by directly connecting your Ring Video Doorbell to a transformer.
The Ring doorbell requires an 8-24 VAC transformer, while the Ring Doorbell 2 requires a 16-24 VAC. Neither device supports DC power.
Difference #5: Field of view – Although the Ring features a 180 degree horizontal and 140 degree vertical field of view, it seems that the Ring 2 has taken a step back in this category.
Despite a decent amount of useful features, the Ring Doorbell 2 only supports a 160 degree horizontal view, as well as suffering from less impressive 100 degree vertical view — which makes no sense. Yet, this is what we’ve got.
Difference #6: Colors – If you really care about the look of your porch, then this might be a major difference to look at. It’s important that the doorbell blends well with your home, and both models offer multiple colors and finishes, however…
With the original Ring, you choose a finish when buying the product. There are four available finishes: Antique Brass, Polished Brass, Satin Nickel, and Venetian Bronze. So, make sure you pick the right one.
But if you’re looking for flexibility — the Ring 2’s got it: you don’t need to pick the color when you purchase the doorbell, because it comes with two interchangeable faceplates for you to select a color that matches your home best. The two colors are Venetian Bronze and Satin Nickel. And yes, the flexibility in color options is a bit of a downfall.
Ring vs. Ring 2 — Comparison Chart
|Ring Video Doorbell||Ring Video Doorbell 2|
|Battery Life||6-12 months||6 months|
|Compatible Doorbell Transformers||8-24 VAC,|
DC not compatible
DC not compatible
|Field of View||180 degrees horizontal,|
140 degrees vertical
|160 degrees horizontal,|
100 degrees vertical
|Video Resolution||720p HD||1080p HD|
|Color Night Vision||Black/White||Black/White|
|Compatible Networks||2.4 GHz 802.11 b/g/n||2.4 GHz 802.11 b/g/n|
|Live View Motion Triggered||Yes||Yes|
|Live View On Demand||Only if wired||Only if wired|
|Size||4.98 x 2.43 x 0.87 inches|
12.65 x 6.17 x 2.21 cm
|5.05 x 2.50 x 1.08 inches|
12.83 x 6.35 x 2.74 cm
|Operating Temperature||-5 – 120°F (-20 – 50°C)||-5 – 120°F (-20 – 50°C)|
|Finish||Available in four finishes||Includes 2 faceplates|
Ring Video Doorbell Subscription Plans
When it comes to smart video surveillance systems, it’s important to read about subscription plans before buying the products. Though the initial product’s cost might be low, its monthly maintenance can easily add another $100 per year.
With the Ring Video Doorbell you don’t have to get a subscription, but if you want to enjoy the smart features of the doorbell, you’ll end up doing it. Ring offers two subscription plans: Ring Protect Basic and Ring Protect Plus. The Basic plan is $3 a month or $30 a year per camera. With the Basic plan, you’ll get to save your Ring Doorbell’s video recordings on 60 days of storage, review videos from missed alerts, and share the videos with your friends and family.
The Ring Protect Plus plan is $10 a month or $100 a year. With the Plus plan you get everything from the Basic plan, plus maintenance for an unlimited number of Ring devices. Besides that, you can also enjoy exclusive discounts and lifetime warranty. It makes sense to get the Ring Protect Plus in case you’re using more than 3 Ring doorbells/cameras.
If you’re looking for doorbells/cameras with better subscription plans, check out the Skybell HD doorbell (no subscription at all) or Arlo cameras (great free plan with 7-day storage for up to 5 devices).
|Cost||$30 per camera per year or $3 per month||$100 per year or $10 per month.|
|Ring Protect system monitoring||No||Yes, 24/7|
|Additional charge for extra cameras||Yes||No, Unlimited cameras|
|Stream Audio & Video||Yes||Yes|
|Lifetime Theft Protection||Yes||Yes|
|Warranty||1-year Warranty||Lifetime Warranty|
Ring vs. Ring 2 Video Doorbell — Our Thoughts
Both the Ring and Ring 2 are great doorbells that can add security and convenience to your monitoring home. As you can see, there are a number of differences between the two models: the Ring offers basic doorbell functionality with a 180-degree field of view, while the Ring 2 generally improves upon its predecessor with better video quality and easier battery-charging. However the Ring Doorbell 2 has the caveat of some unfortunate tradeoffs — like downgraded field of view.
It’s might seem hard to choose the right doorbell, but once you do, you’ll have home security at your fingertips.
- Ring Video Doorbell
- Ring Video Doorbell 2
Let us know what you think!
If you had to choose between Ring vs. Ring 2 smart video doorbell, what would you choose and why?