September 9, 2016
The Ring Video Doorbell Pro is the 3rd device offered from Ring and was released in March of 2016. Unlike the original Ring Video Doorbell, the Doorbell Pro requires existing doorbell wires as it lacks an internal battery. It's more sleek than the original doorbell and comes with new features such as 5hz Wifi support, 1080p Video, Enhanced Night Vision, and Advanced Motion Detection. It also includes 4 removable face plates in Satin Black, Venetian, Satin Nickel, and Pearl White. The box also includes installation accessories such as a screwdriver, screws, drill bit, wiretaps, wire harness, and Night Vision Booster. The Ring Night Vision Booster ensures that the Doorbell Pro receives sufficient power and also adds an inline fuse.
Installation of the doorbell is fairly straightforward. There are two screws on the back of the unit that connect to your existing doorbell wires and the unit is attached to your exterior wall using the included screws. The Night Vision Booster will typically be wired to your mechanical doorbell chime. The Ring App walks you through the setup and includes videos to assist with the setup process.
I ran into some installation issues during setup. With everything installed, my NuTone mechanical doorbell chime did not ring with the Doorbell Pro. After ensuring that everything was wired correctly, I uninstalled the Night Vision Booster and my doorbell started working. It wasn't completely working as I was only getting a "ding' instead of "ding-dong" but for some reason the Night Vision Booster prevented it from ringing at all. I spoke with Ring technical support and after ensuring that everything was wired correctly they asked me to send them pictures of my wiring. Unfortunately, the chime issue is still unresolved.
The doorbell works 3 different ways. It can be triggered by motion, pressing the doorbell button, or initiating Live View. When any of these events are triggered the doorbell pushes the video to the cloud. The cloud recordings can be accessed within minutes from the Ring App or using the Ring.com website. All Ring devices include a free 30-day trial for the cloud recording service. After 30 days the cloud subscription costs $3/month or $30/year.
Ring claims that the Doorbell Pro has support for 1080p video and although the video quality is noticeably clearer than the Original Ring Doorbell, it doesn't appear to be 1080p.
The original Ring Doorbell had impressive night vision. Even in a very dark environment it utilized nearby light very well and presented colors well. The Enhanced Night Vision on the Doorbell Pro works okay. However, the video is black and white in Night Vision Mode. This mode allows you to see farther but the video is not any clearer than the original doorbell.
The field of view on the Doorbell Pro is not as wide as the original Ring Doorbell. This is likely from the use of a new higher resolution camera. However, it would have been nice to keep the ultra-wide angle of the original Ring Doorbell.
The microphone does a great job at cancelling background noise. I have a noisy highway not far from my house, which made it difficult to hear people at my door. However, the Doorbell Pro does an amazing job at suppressing background noise.
The Advanced Motion Detection on the Doorbell Pro is impressive! Instead of using perimeter motion detection like the Ring Doorbell, the Doorbell Pro uses multi-zone video detection. This prevents false alarms from vehicles and other unwanted alerts.
I had a chance to test both 5ghz and 2.4ghz wifi bands. I didn't notice any benefits of using 5ghz over 2.4ghz. The device didn't appear to work any faster and the video quality didn't change.
Many people complained about delays with the Original Ring Video Doorbell. However, on both doorbells it takes approximately 3-5 seconds to receive the notification on my mobile devices when someone presses the doorbell button or if the unit senses motion. Ring has released several firmware updates which have improved notification speeds. However, with the Doorbell Pro, I have about a 3 second delay on my mechanical doorbell chime when the doorbell button is pressed. It didn't have this issue with the original Video Doorbell as it worked in real time with each press of the button. Several others have mentioned the 3 second delay with the Doorbell Pro and I hope that Ring will address the issue with a firmware update.
- Chris Majestic (Majestechs)