Pro

  • Works with the Arlo Chime, Arlo Ultra or Pro 2 camera and Arlo Security Light
  • Can use most existing wired chimes
  • Weather resistant
  • Reasonably fast press-to-call time
  • Two-way conversation is possible but can be laggy

Con

  • Doorbell speaker volume peaks at 65dB – hard for callers to hear in a busy area
  • Audio quality and lag is variable (depends on signal strength)
  • Motion detection can suffer from too many false alarms – placement is critical. Cannot adjust the sensitivity (a software issue)
  • Triggering a paired camera and light can be laggy (depends on signal strength)
  • Cannot assume 100% reliability like a wired doorbell/chime
  • Battery life depends on mAh rating of AA batteries – use Alkaline batteries with 2500mAh or more
  • Requires an Arlo SmartHub (or Pro Base station) and camera/light so that ups the investment
  • Why didn’t Arlo make it a combo camera/light/doorbell? Just announced!!!

Summary: The Arlo Doorbell is V1.0, and I suspect software updates will cure some reported issues. GadgetGuy did not experience any unworkable issues apart from lag times. It all comes down to signal strength, and we repeat the advice earlier – plan where to put the Ultra Base station, so the signal is as strong as possible for all devices.

It is really only for existing Arlo users only, and we suggest you read the Arlo Community Chime page before buying.

Arlo Security Light (2 pack)

The Security Light is an IP65, PIR (passive infrared), motion activated, 400 lumens, LED light. It is a great companion to an Arlo Pro 2 (Arlo Ultra has a LED spot) in a dark location like an alley or hallway. The lights can flash, flood (wider), spot (narrow beam), change colours, are ambient light sensitive and can trigger an Arlo camera. They can stay lit for 5, 10, 20, 30, or 60 minutes.

Arlo light

While 400 lumens may sound a lot, it is like a 40W light bulb (although with a more concentrated beam). Consider that office lighting is between 400-500 lumens and a 150W Para flood is about 1000 lumens. Colour temperature is about 4000K – cool white.

What it does is add enough light to bring colour and definition back into the camera image. Our tests showed that the effective light range is about three metres, and motion detection is about 5 metres.

The lights connect via Bluetooth LE to a Well Light Bridge (plugs into a 240V socket) that in theory can be up to 30 metres away. Our tests indicate that 10 metres inside a house or 20 metres line-of-sight distance is more realistic. There is a range finder test in the app.

The Bridge connects to the Ultra SmartHub so it can be up to 20-30 metres away.

Our tests show that 20 metres is about maximum. You can have multiple Bridges, each supporting up to four lights.

Arlo Light and hub

The lights have an A-1, 7.2V/2.44A (17.57W), 2440mAh VMA400 battery and come with a 5V/2A (10W) USB-A to micro-USB charger. The battery is the same as the Arlo Pro 2 camera uses so you can use its charger and any charging stations.

When we used the supplied 5V/2A charger, it took over five hours. However, when we used the Arlo Pro 2 charger (5V/1.8A and 9V/1.1A) the time reduced to three hours.

We have not been able to estimate battery life yet, and Arlo claims 4-6 months depending on use. We suspect that the LEDs draw a lot more power than a camera and as such the life may be closer to two-three months.

This would be a great candidate for a solar panel.

The pack comes with two ¼-inch camera screw mounts and screws.

We also found the light useful to illuminate dark pedestrian areas outside the house – pathways etc. But if that were your sole purpose, then there are a lot of lower cost options.

Our only issue was that every time it detected motion, we got an alert from the light and the camera. For the light to come on, you need motion detection enabled. For the camera to come on, you need motion detection enabled. The app needs more work to allow for one or the other to be the master and trigger the other.

Pro

  • Adequate light for a small hall or foyer
  • Good visible deterrent
  • Adds colour and definition to an IR camera

Con

  • All Arlo devices have a very small micro-USB cable connection ‘space’ meaning few third-party cables will fit

GadgetGuy’s take: The Arlo Ultra ‘system’ does the job well – if you plan your system

The Arlo Ultra is a holistic ‘system’ where the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. The hub and devices all come together via the app. Sure that needs more work in the consistency department, but it is a very good start.

The Arlo Ultra camera and SmartHub are quite an advance on the Arlo Pro/2 camera and Base Station.