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In this review, we dive into Arlo and Reolink's high-end Wire-Free Spotlight Cameras; the Ultra 2 vs the Argus 3 Pro.

We say "Wire-Free" instead of "Wireless" as these cameras are battery powered and transmit over Wi-Fi, which makes them pretty straightforward to install. There are plenty of differences between these two though, so let's begin!

Arlo Ultra 2 vs Reolink Argus 3 Pro Head to Head

Key Differences

Price
Power Options
BatteryAC Power
DC PowerBatterySolar Panel
Resolution
4K / Ultra HD / 8MP: 3840x2160
4MP: 2560x1440
Image Sensor Size
1/2"
1/3"
Storage Options
microSDCloudUSB Flash Drive
microSDCloud
Continuous Recording
Yes
No
Smart Motion Detection Features
Person DetectionVehicle DetectionObject Detection
Person DetectionVehicle Detection
IP Rating
Weather-resistant
IP65
Smart Integrations
AlexaGoogle AssistantApple HomeKitSmartThingsIFTTT
Google AssistantChromecastGoogle Nest Hub
Are Camera Features Limited without a Cloud Subscription?
Yes
No
Apps
AndroidiOS
AndroidiOSWindowsMacBrowser App

Key Features in Common

Case Type(s)
Spotlight
Spotlight
Camera Location
IndoorOutdoor
IndoorOutdoor
Data Type
IP
IP
Camera Wire Type
Wireless Data & Battery Power
Wireless Data & Battery Power
Data Transmission
2.4GHz WiFi5GHz WiFi
2.4GHz WiFi5GHz WiFi
Integrated Microphone
Yes
Yes
Two Way Audio
Yes
Yes
Integrated Siren / Alarm
Yes
Yes
Lens Type
Fixed Focus
Fixed Focus
Night Vision Functionality
Yes
Yes
Night Vision Type
InfraredFull Color (via Spotlight)
InfraredFull Color (via Spotlight)
Spotlight
Yes
Yes
Motion Activated Recording
Yes
Yes
Motorized Pan Feature
No
No
Motorized Tilt Feature
No
No
Optical Zoom Feature
No
No
Cloud Subscription
Optional
Optional

Overview

Model Code
Ultra 2
Argus 3 Pro
Other Model Codes
VMC5040
-
Case Type(s)
Spotlight
Spotlight
Price
Color
WhiteBlack
WhiteBlack
Camera Location
IndoorOutdoor
IndoorOutdoor
Camera Wire Type
Wireless Data & Battery Power
Wireless Data & Battery Power
Warranty
1 year(s)
2 year(s)
Model Type
Camera
Camera
Calculated Rating
75
73

Power & Data Feeds

As discussed, both of these cameras are wire-free so they are primarily battery powered. This can be a hassle as they require regular charging. The Arlo has the option of powering via AC through a standard socket while the Argus 3 Pro can be hooked up to DC power or an add-on solar panel.

The Reolink camera has the added benefit of transmitting on 5GHz Wi-Fi which is great if you have a router close by. 2.4GHz will transmit further which is why it is the standard in Wi-Fi cameras.

Data Type
IP
IP
Power Options
BatteryAC Power
DC PowerBatterySolar Panel
Power Information
6-month battery life AC 5V 2A Output / 100-240V AC, 50/60Hz Input
Battery 6000mAh rechargeable battery (Battery life varies based on settings, usage & temperature) Solar Reolink Solar Panel DC Power 5V/2A USB power adapter
Data Transmission
2.4GHz WiFi5GHz WiFi
2.4GHz WiFi5GHz WiFi
Data Transmission Information
802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth Low Energy 4.2
-

Camera & Lens

The Arlo has a larger image resolution recording in 4K which is good for digitally zooming in on faces or number plates. The Arlo's image sensor is also bigger which supports the higher resolution and can provide better night vision as more light can hit the sensor.

Resolution
4K / Ultra HD / 8MP: 3840x2160
4MP: 2560x1440
Image Sensor
-
CMOS
Image Sensor Size
1/2"
1/3"
Lens Type
Fixed Focus
Fixed Focus
Fixed Focal Length
-
2.8mm
Field of View (Horizontal)
180°
-
Field of View (Diagonal)
-
122°

Video

The Arlo supports continuous recording (as an optional cloud extra) if hooked up to AC power whereas the Argus 3 Pro does not.

Motion Activated Recording
Yes
Yes
Continuous Recording
Yes
No
Video Coding Format
-
H.265
Number of Video Streams
-
1
Video Code Rates
4K, 2K, 1080p, 720p
-
Max Supported Frame Rate
-
15fps
Video FPS Details
-
2560 x 1440 (4.0 Megapixels) at 15 frames/sec
WDR
Digital WDR / HDR
-

Night Vision

Both cameras have both infrared and full-color night vision with integrated spotlights. This is great for identifying people at night when the spotlight activates.

Night Vision Functionality
Yes
Yes
Night Vision Type
InfraredFull Color (via Spotlight)
InfraredFull Color (via Spotlight)
Infrared Distance (Total Darkness)
-
Up to 33ft
Infrared LED PCS
-
6
Spotlight
Yes
Yes
Spotlight Distance
-
Up to 33ft
Spotlight PCS
-
2
Spotlight Lumens
-
230 Lumens
Night Vision Hardware Details
High powered Infrared LEDs (850nm) with IR Cut Filter
2560 x 1440 (4.0 Megapixels) at 15 frames/sec

Audio

Each camera has two-way audio with integrated speakers and microphones. They also have the ability to enable an audible alarm through the speaker.

Integrated Microphone
Yes
Yes
Audio Interface
No
No
Integrated Speaker
Yes
Yes
Two Way Audio
Yes
Yes
Integrated Siren / Alarm
Yes
Yes
Alarm Interface
No
-

Storage & Interoperability

While both cameras have microSD slots, the Reolink footage is easier to access via the app. Both have optional cloud storage while the Arlo allows recording to a USB Flash Drive hooked up to the Wi-Fi hub.

Storage Options
microSDCloudUSB Flash Drive
microSDCloud
Maximum On-Board Storage Capacity
-
128gb

Cloud

Arlo has the added benefit of Alexa, Apple Homekit, and Samsung SmartThings integration while Reolink allows broadcasting the footage via Chromecast or a Nest Hub screen.

The big downside of the Arlo Ultra 2 is you need to subscribe to their monthly plan to gain access to all of the features (specifically Smart / AI Notifications). Reolink also offers a free cloud storage plan with paid plans available. Arlo's plans can get expensive for 4K storage.

Smart Integrations
AlexaGoogle AssistantApple HomeKitSmartThingsIFTTT
Google AssistantChromecastGoogle Nest Hub
Cloud Subscription
Optional
Optional
Are Camera Features Limited without a Cloud Subscription?
Yes
No

Intelligence

Both cameras have smart motion detection features, although as mentioned, it is an added cost for Arlo. Person and vehicle detection dramatically reduces the number of false alarms and false notifications.

Motion Alerts
Push Notifications
Push NotificationsEmail Alerts
Configurable Motion Zones
Yes
Unsure
Configurable Motion Sensitivity
-
Unsure
Smart Motion Detection Features
Person DetectionVehicle DetectionObject Detection
Person DetectionVehicle Detection

PTZ

With the 4K resolution, the Arlo offers digital zoom tracking of people who trigger the smart motion detection - up to 12x. Reolink offers 16x digital zoom, however, has a smaller resolution so quality will slightly suffer.

Motorized Pan Feature
No
No
Motorized Tilt Feature
No
No
Optical Zoom Feature
No
No
Digital Zoom Feature
Yes
Yes
Digital Zoom Magnification
12x
16x

Device

From our research we could not find an exact IP rating for the Arlo Ultra 2 - they just mention it is weather resistant. Reolink on the other hand has IP65 ingress protection.

The Arlo can operate in a slightly larger temperature range, which may be important if you need to install it in extreme conditions.

Weight
-
330g
Dimensions
3.5x2x3in
4.76 x 3.54 x 2.2 in
IP Rating
Weather-resistant
IP65
Operating Temperature Min
-4F
14F
Operating Temperature Max
113F
131F

App

While both cameras have iOS and Android apps, Reolink has Desktop and Web Apps for which the Argus 3 Pro is compatible. (A separate NVR may be required)

Mobile Apps
AndroidiOS
Multi-Channel ViewingLive FeedVideo PlaybackEvent ListReal Time NotificationsTwo Way Audio

AndroidiOS
Multi-Channel ViewingLive FeedVideo PlaybackEvent ListReal Time NotificationsCapture Video / ImagesControl PTZTime LapseShare Clips

Desktop Apps
WindowsMac
Multi-Channel ViewingLive FeedVideo PlaybackEvent ListReal Time NotificationsCapture Video / ImagesShare Clips

Web Apps
IE10IE11EdgeChromeSafariFirefox

The Arlo Ultra 2 vs Reolink Argus 3 Pro Result

Arlo vs Reolink Overview

Year Founded
2014
2009
Customer Focus
Consumer Leaning
Mix of Business & Consumer
Aggregate App Reviews
3.5/5
2.9/5
Cloud Platform Name
Arlo Secure and Arlo Secure Plus
Reolink Cloud
Cloud Subscription Features
Cloud StorageSmart / AI NotificationsRich App PreviewsAdvanced App Features
Cloud Storage
Cloud Subscription Costs
From $2.99/mo of $14.99/mo for 4K Starts at $2.99/Month Single Camera / $9.99/Month Unlimited Cameras
Free Plan Available - Standard Plan starts $3.49 / $6.99 / $10.49 / Month