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Reolink home security review

Fact-checked by Molly Dyson

A smart home security system provides a seamless way to safeguard your property. It integrates advanced technology for real-time monitoring and alerts, allowing you to respond swiftly to potential threats. Its convenience and efficiency in enhancing home safety make it an essential tool in the modern, connected world.

Reolink began its journey in 2009 with a product range vastly different from what is associated with the brand today. Initially, it focused on security camera systems tethered to local recording devices, such as DVRs, with no offerings like wifi or battery-powered cameras in its early catalogue. 

However, Reolink’s trajectory shifted significantly around 2016 with the launch of its first wire-free camera range, the Reolink Argus. The company has now established itself as a successful smart home security market player by producing comprehensive packages for homeowners. 

Our experts have examined and analysed three of Reolink’s best home security systems, assessing performance, components, costs and user reviews.

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60-second review

Rating: ★★★★

 

Reolink offers a broad range of security options, including an extensive catalogue of surveillance cameras. Its pre-configured packages typically consist of multiple cameras accompanied by a network video recorder, or NVR, delivering local storage space. 

 

Each system is easily installed, can be managed by Reolink’s app, and has a two-year warranty. While its cameras lack several advanced features, such as package recognition or AI image enhancements, the crisp resolution, clear night vision, two-way audio, and zoom options provide a solid answer to reliable home security.

Our top three recommended providers

How we test smart home security systems

100+
hours of research
10
customer service calls
59
security systems compared
500+
customer reviews read
6
experts consulted

Our experts have undertaken extensive researched and testing for each home security system in order to provide fair, impartial and accurate recommendations. We compare included equipment, features, quality and cost alongside what others in the industry say and how customers have also reviewed their experiences.

Our reviews are determined by the following categories:

  • Reputation and credibility
  • Security and performance
  • Features
  • Plans and pricing value
  • Customer experience

We examine 35 elements within these categories including:

  • Monitoring services and contract types
  • Data backup and storage
  • Warranties
  • Flexibility/customisation in bundles
  • Quality (image, sound, product)
  • Installation

All of our home security articles are verified by our in-house team of fact-checkers, to give consumers the knowledge they need to make an informed, up-to-date and confident buying decision. For more information, read our article on how we review home security systems.

How does a smart home security system work?

A smart home security system represents a significant leap from traditional setups. Instead of just sounding alarms or alerting a monitoring service, smart systems integrate seamlessly with your home’s wifi network, offering a high level of interconnectivity and control. They use a variety of sensors and cameras that can be monitored and controlled remotely via a smartphone app, providing real-time surveillance footage and notifications. 

Unlike traditional systems, where you might only know of an intrusion when the alarm sounds or if a monitoring service contacts you, smart systems proactively send alerts directly to your phone, often with video evidence. This immediate information allows for quicker response to potential threats. Additionally, they can be integrated with other smart home devices, enabling automated responses, such as lights turning on when motion is detected. The benefits of convenience, enhanced control, and improved response time make smart home security a more dynamic and effective solution for safeguarding your home.

  • Equipment cost: From around £84.99 upwards
  • Monthly fee: No monthly fees unless you require more than 1GB of cloud storage 
  • Power outage backup: Yes
  • Mobile phone backup: Yes
  • Live streaming: Yes
  • Push alerts: Yes
  • Remotely arm/disarm system: Yes
  • Voice assistants: Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa
  • Apps for: Android and iOS

Reolink offers competitive prices for its individual security devices, however its pre-configured kits are among the priciest we’ve reviewed. Unlike Hey!, which features similar price points, Reolink doesn’t offer any door or window sensors; instead, it relies on its passive infrared (PIR) sensors, delivered through its cameras, to monitor movement.

Key feature Reolink ADT SimpliSafe Ring Hey! Arlo
Minimum equipment cost (without installation) £84.99 £199 £249.96 £219.99 £129.99 £284.97
Starting monthly fee £3.49 for optional cloud storage £35.99 (36 months minimum) From £15.90 £3.49 (optional) £3.49 for optional cloud storage £3.49/month for a single camera, £9.99/month for unlimited cameras
Power outage backup Yes Checked daily by ADT 24-hour backup battery 24-hour battery backup Battery backup on floodlight camera and long battery charge specified on some items Battery backup via additional devices
Mobile phone backup Local or cloud storage or via SD card Cloud storage 4G data backup Yes, cloud storage with subscription Cloud storage or SD card Cloud storage
Live streaming Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Push alerts Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Remotely arm/disarm system Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes

Reolink offers pre-configured home security systems, the option to tailor your package depending on your requirements, or individual security devices, such as a video doorbell at £109.99. 

Reolink’s packages appear to be designed with more expansive properties in mind, as they typically feature four or more cameras, so if your home is smaller, it may be worth considering individual devices or a cheaper tailored package.

Our featured products come with a two-year limited warranty. 

Upfront equipment costs

Package name Equipment Cost
RLK8-810B4-A Smart 4K Security Kit with Person/Vehicle Detection x4 4K Ultra HD cameras (RLC-810A) x1 hard drive (RLN8 – 410) £559.99
RLK8-842D4-A 4K Vandal-Proof PoE Security Camera System x4 IP cameras (RLC-842A) x1 hard drive (RLN8-410) £659.99
RLK8-811B4-A 4K Smart PoE Camera System with 5X Optical Zoom and Spotlights x4 4K Ultra HD spotlight cameras (RLC-811A) x1 hard drive (RLN8-410) £713.99

Optional monthly costs

Monthly plan Monthly cost Features
Standard plan £4.99 30-day cloud video history 5 cameras supported 30GB of cloud storage Smart notifications
Premier plan £9.89 30-day cloud video history 10 cameras supported 80GB of cloud storage Smart notifications
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Best Monitoring
Over 148 years of experience
Best DIY
Easy DIY installation
Best Bespoke
Rated 4.6 on Trustpilot

Equipment overview

4K Ultra HD camera (RLC-810A)

The Reolink RLC-810A distinguishes itself in the home security camera market with a brushed metal housing, giving a solid, premium feel. The slightly boxy design looks more like a traditional security camera, which could deter potential intruders.

The camera delivers remarkably crisp images, extending to the farthest reaches of the background. In night mode, it shifts to a black and white night vision. Unlike other cameras that lose clarity in low light, its 4K resolution combats this common problem, ensuring a well-lit and detailed image even at night.

The motion detection feature reduces false alarms and offers person, vehicle and pet detection options, along with full customisation of notification schedules and types. However, its 87-degree horizontal field of view is narrower compared to wider-angled rivals. Lacking wifi, it requires an Ethernet connection, safeguarded by a waterproofing kit. Power options include Power over Ethernet (PoE) or a traditional 12V supply. The recorded video is saved to the on-board microSD card and is viewable through the timeline interface. 

Reolink’s app is straightforward, providing a thumbnail view of your camera and a live feed, which can be enhanced to full resolution. 

It is compatible with Google Assistant and supports Windows, Mac OS, iOS, and Android.

IP camera (RLC-842A)

The Reolink RLC-842A, a discreet ceiling-mounted security camera, is designed to be vandal-resistant and operates using PoE to power and record everything within its view. This robustly constructed camera features an aluminium casing and a reinforced lens cover that shields against dust and water.

With a motorised varifocal lens, RLC-842A provides a horizontal viewing angle of 105 degrees. Its 5X optical zoom allows you to zoom in for astonishing details and zoom out for a broader perspective.

This camera intelligently distinguishes between people and vehicles, disregarding the movements of smaller animals. It offers versatile recording options, including continuous, motion-triggered, or recordings based on a set schedule, with customised motion zones. You can save videos and audio recordings to the micro SD card in the camera, which will support up to 256GB of files. The card is not included.

An additional feature is the ability to configure the camera to take time-lapse images so you can capture what happens over a 24-hour period. 

The Reolink RLC-842A has an 8MP camera which supports 4K resolution. The image is crystal clear, with realistic contrast, while 24 infrared LEDs offer crisp night vision.  

4K Ultra HD spotlight camera (RLC-811A)

The Reolink RLC-811A bears a striking resemblance to its sibling, the RLC-810. It features a sizable metallic body with a matte white finish. Due to its substantial dimensions of 7.5 x 7.1 x 13.5cm, it’s quite conspicuous when installed on a wall or ceiling – a deliberate design aspect for these security devices. Their visibility acts as a deterrent to potential intruders. If the camera’s size isn’t deterrent enough, it also boasts a bright spotlight of five large LEDs below the front-facing lens, adding to its noticeable presence.

Like other Reolink cameras, this model features advanced human, pet, and vehicle detection capabilities, enabling it to distinguish between the three based on their shape. In practice, it performs impressively, accurately differentiating between them. By turning off standard motion detection and manually adjusting the size settings for the objects, you can effectively reduce false alarms, enhancing the system’s precision and reliability.

When an intruder is detected, the camera’s spotlights and siren are triggered or, if you prefer, manually activated, with two-way audio allowing interaction. 

The horizontal field of view is 105 degrees, with a clear resolution, even at night using either the infrared or the spotlight, which produces near-realistic colours, allowing easy identification or reading number plates.  

Hard drive (RLN8 – 410)

Reolink’s RLN8-410 is an eight-channel NVR (Network Video Recorder) model, designed to support both PoE and wireless Reolink cameras, excluding those that are battery-operated. This device offers a convenient alternative to using SD cards or managing monthly cloud storage fees, as it stores all footage locally on its built-in 2TB drive, which can be expanded for additional storage capacity.

What do customers say?

Reolink has a Trustpilot score of 4.2, with reviews from over 1,660 customers. One and two-star reviews make up 20 per cent of the total, while 78 per cent award four or five stars. 

Many positive customer experiences mention prompt, helpful customer service and good product performance, while negative reviews contradict, listing poor performances and subpar customer support. However, Reolink’s team responded to most of these reviews within 24 hours, attempting to rectify any issues.

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“Great cameras and when I had a fault with one, I contacted them and they replaced it and sent me a label to return the faulty one. I have the solar ones, so I can move them about and they pick up wifi no problem, even though it is an old bungalow with thick walls. [I] highly recommend them.”

 

“Wasted my time contacting them twice since early August and got no response for a simple account issue. I’m assuming the front line employee that handled my emails wasn’t following company guidelines. The onus then is on Reolink to provide alternative means to be heard – as it’s done at other commercial enterprises.”

 

“I have been a customer with Reolink since 2019 and have purchased multiple systems and cameras from them and the products and customer service is great. I would recommend their products to everyone.”

App overview

To operate any camera from Reolink, the Reolink app is a necessity. While certain features are specific to individual camera models, many functionalities are consistent across all cameras we’ve reviewed:

  • Live streaming video: The app allows you to view a live stream from your phone, with an option to display multiple camera feeds simultaneously, eliminating manual view switching. The livestream interface includes features for taking photos, recording videos, accessing recordings, and adjusting the pan-tilt-zoom settings of the camera
  • Motion detection sensitivity: The sensitivity of the PIR motion sensor in each camera can be adjusted. This is particularly handy for avoiding excessive notifications every time a car drives by or capturing unnecessary footage of local wildlife 
  • Two-way audio: The app turns the camera into an intercom, enabling you to communicate with people near the camera
  • Siren and custom voice alerts: Each camera can be configured to trigger a siren upon motion detection. A unique feature allows you to choose between a standard alarm sound or a custom voice message up to five seconds long

Our researchers found the Reolink app highly efficient on iOS and Android devices. Its user-friendly interface makes it simple to tailor notifications to your specific requirements.

Reolink’s catalogue focuses on surveillance cameras, and while it markets individual products and tailored home security solutions, our research concentrates on its pre-configured packages.

4K Security Kit with Smart Person/Vehicle Detection (RLK8-810B4-A): Best all-round system

Reolink home security review best all round system
The Reolink RLK8-810B4-A is easy to install and comes with two-way audio (Reolink)
  • What you get: 
    • x4 4K Ultra HD cameras (RLC-810A)
    • x1 hard drive (RLN8 – 410)
  • Upfront cost: £559.99
  • Monthly fee: N/A

Consisting of four 4K ultra HD cameras and a 2TB hard drive, this package is easy to install and offers a highly adaptable set-up, with the option to expand by a further four cameras if necessary.  

Setting Reolink’s systems apart are professional-grade desktop software and a comprehensive smartphone app, allowing you to access camera feeds and events from anywhere globally without recurring subscription fees.

The available features include two-way communication, night vision, pan/tilt capabilities, and person or vehicle detection. Combined with reliable notifications, and fantastic image quality, this security system would suit any homeowner concerned with securing and monitoring their property.

Package score

Reputation ★★★½
Security and performance ★★½
Features ★★½
Plans and pricing ★★★★½
Customer experience ★★★½
Overall ★★★½

4K Vandal-proof PoE Security Camera System (RLK8-842D4-A): Best for townhouses

Reolink home security review best for townhouses
Thanks to their tough outer casing, the cameras in the Reolink RLK8-842D4-A are resistant to vandals trying to destroy them (Reolink)
  • What you get: 
    • x4 IP cameras (RLC-842A)
    • x1 hard drive (RLN8-410)
  • Upfront cost: £659.99
  • Monthly fee: N/A

Featuring four of Reolink’s 842A cameras, this system is ideal for homeowners concerned about vandals damaging their cameras. Rated IK10 vandal-proof, the 842A has been rigorously tested and has successfully withstood all human attempts to destroy it. It offers x5 zoom capabilities, a motorised varifocal lens, person and vehicle detection, and two-way audio options. 

The hard drive’s 2TB storage capacity can be expanded up to 12TB, while, with eight channels, the system can handle an additional four cameras, recording simultaneously.

Package score

Reputation ★★★½
Security and performance ★★★
Features ★★½
Plans and pricing ★★★★
Customer experience ★★★½
Overall ★★★½

4K Smart PoE Camera System with 5X Optical Zoom and Spotlights (RLK8-811B4-A): Best for properties with expansive outdoor space

Reolink home security review best for outdoor space
Ultra-bright spotlights on the Reolink RLK8-811B4-A cameras make them a good choice for homes with large gardens (Reolink)
  • What you get: 
    • x4 4K Ultra HD spotlight cameras (RLC-811A)
    • x1 hard drive (RLN8-410)
  • Upfront cost: £713.99
  • Monthly fee: N/A

The four 4K 8MP Ultra HD cameras feature full-colour night vision, zoom functions, customisable motion detection, and the combined deterrent of searingly bright spotlights and siren designed to prevent criminal activity before it starts. This makes it a good system for homes with extensive gardens or large driveways – the automatic or manually activated spotlights eliminate dark, intruder-friendly corners.

The 2TB hard drive, which can be expanded by an additional 10TB, supports the included four cameras, plus four more if necessary, to record continuously at the same time.

Package score

Reputation ★★★½
Security and performance ★★★
Features ★★½
Plans and pricing ★★★★
Customer experience ★★★½
Overall ★★★½
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Independent Advisor’s verdict

Our experience with Reolink cameras has shown that they stand up well against other camera brands, such as Hey!, SimpliSafe, and Ring, making them some of our top picks in the mid-priced security camera category. 

 

While Reolink may not offer some of the advanced features, such as AI image enhancements, package detection, and emergency call services, found in some competing brands, they excel in areas like video quality, camera variety, and storage options, which should meet the needs of most users.

 

A bonus is the two-year warranty that comes with these cameras, a surprisingly uncommon offering in the security camera market, complemented by solid customer support.

Overall score breakdown

Reputation ★★★½
Security and performance ★★★
Features ★★½
Plans and pricing ★★★★½
Customer experience ★★★½
Overall ★★★½
Our top three recommended providers

Frequently asked questions about Reolink home security

Reolink security cameras incorporate sophisticated encryption technologies, including SSL encryption, WPA2, and AES encryption. These measures ensure that live surveillance feeds are secure and protected from unauthorised access by hackers.

Reolink cameras do offer 24/7 continuous recording from simultaneous cameras, or users can choose to customise their recordings easily through the app, selecting the level of surveillance they require.

Having a security system installed in your home offers several advantages, notably deterring potential burglars from attempting a break-in. If a break-in occurs, a good system significantly improves the likelihood of identifying and apprehending the perpetrators afterwards.

Recent estimates indicate that 96 per cent of security systems in the UK are owned by small businesses and homeowners. Studies have shown that areas monitored by cameras experience a 14 per cent reduction in crime, particularly in vehicle and property incidents.

Katharine Allison

Energy Saving Writer

As Independent Advisor’s energy saving expert, Katharine, a keen advocate for sustainability, is an authority on solar panels, double glazing, and cutting-edge renewable energy technologies. Her dedication merges with a commitment to enlighten and steer readers toward embracing eco-friendly solutions and the latest trends in sustainability.

With over 10 years of experience, she has worked with some of the UK’s leading companies and publications, including the Federation of Master Builders, Architectural Digest, and Denon Construction. 

Katharine is particularly passionate about consumer causes and animal welfare and has art, philosophy, and psychology degrees. She lives with her sled dogs in East Sussex.

Molly Dyson

Editor

After growing up with a passion for writing, Molly studied journalism and creative writing at university in her home country of the United States.

She has written for a variety of print and online publications, from small town newspapers to international magazines. Most of her 10-year career since relocating to the UK has been spent in business journalism, writing and editing for admin professionals at PA Life magazine and business travel managers at Business Travel News Europe and representing those titles at conferences around the world.

Now an Editor at the Independent Advisor, Molly is an expert in a broad range of consumer topics, that include solar panels and renewables, home improvements and home insurance, and consumer technology such as home security and VPNs.

In her free time, Molly can usually be found exploring the outdoors with her husband and their young son or gardening.