10 Best Motion Activated Spy Cameras with Night Vision

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So you want it all, eh?

Not only do you want a secret camera hidden in your pen, clock, mirror or USB charging plug, but you want the camera to be motivation activated and have night vision.

Your not asking for much are you?!

Fortunately, in this post I review some of the best examples of these type of devices.

But first, I will go through a few simple definitions.

What is a spy camera?

The most famous user of spy cameras is perhaps James Bond.

When he first appeared on our screens in the 1960s, the tiny gadgets he used were the stuff of dreams.

But now they are available for us all.

A spy camera is a hidden camera that cannot be seen by the naked eye. It can be detected using specialist equipment, however.

By hidden, I do not mean that a spy camera is an ordinary camera hidden behind a curtain  or under a sofa cushion.

Oh no.

A spy camera is a tiny camera that is built into another gadget or high tech device.

Examples from my reviews today include a camera built into a clock, picture frame and Bluetooth speaker.

However, spy cameras have been built into a huge range of devices such as; Bluetooth speakers, usb charging plugs, electrical sockets and even an iPhone charging dock.

And I am just scratching the surface because the number of devices that are available with integrated spy cameras is massive.

They are in so many everyday objects and devices it is a wonder if you will you ever feel comfortable in your best friend’s house again?

I am only joking…

Who Should Buy a Spy Camera?

Spy, mini or hidden cameras used to be for six types of people: 

Firstly is James Bond Or CIA fans who wanted to “walk the talk” and pretend to be a spy but with real equipment. For these people, acting the part was far more important than any footage. They wanted the prop and just recorded any old thing. 

The second type of person were professionals who used spy cameras to monitor household staff, specifically Nannies. This is why spy cameras are also called Nanny Cams.

And the third type of person was the slightly strange and more troubling type  These people got a kick out of secretly recording people. There was no reason to record people or events other than for the thrill it produced. 

They liked the sense of power it gave them. 

But I think that the market is now changing and these cameras are appealing to a wider range of people.

The fourth type of person who are interested in buying these hidden cameras are people who a few years ago bought standard security cameras but they no longer feel that this type of visible camera deters crime.

And as the quality of spy cameras increase and the price drops, these people are buying all sorts of mini cameras to set up in their homes as a new way to protect themselves from crime. 

The fifth type of person that spy cameras appeal to are concerned children who want to monitor elderly parents secretly. 

You know the type of parents? Those who are fiercely independent no matter how frail they become.

And they definitely won’t allow any sort of smart cameras in their homes, even if it is for their own safety.

Which leaves their children, who are worried sick, with no option but to install a covert system.

Our final type of buyer are those adventurous types who want an action camera but at a budget price.

After all, the very best spy cameras are small, lightweight and battery powered so why not take one with you on your next adveture?

How does motion activation work?

Now one of the most important functions that your spy camera needs to have is motion detection.

Motion detection is the ability of any camera to detect movement, take photos or videos of that movement and then to alert the owner of the camera.

A security camera can detect motion because of infrared energy. 

Infrared is a type of invisible light energy that humans cannot see.

Infrared is used for motion detection because the heat from a person or animal’s body is a type of infrared and it can be detected with an infrared sensor.

Any security camera that detects motion contains an infrared chip in it.

The chip contains two main parts: a sensor and a transmitter.

It is the sensor that detects infrared from people or animals.

When this happens, two things should happen within a spy camera- or any security camera for that matter.

Firstly, a set or burst of photos are taken and then the owner of the camera is notified via the app or via email.

How Does Night Vision Work

Night vision is the ability of a device to produce a clear black and white photo or video even in total darkness.

And again this is because of infrared.

Earlier on I explained a bit about the infrared chip within a spy camera.

The part of the chip that is most involved with night vision is the LED which transmits a beam of infrared energy which helps to illuminate objects that are “giving off” infrared energy.

Which are people or animals. 

And it is this illumination that helps the best night vision systems create some very clear black and white pictures even at night. 

Most spy cameras seem to be equipped with about 12 LEDs and although it is not always true, you could say that the more infrared LEDs a spy camera has, the better quality images it will produce because more LEDs, mean more illumination which will lead to clearer images. 

Best Features of Motion Activated Spy Cameras with Night Vision

The best features of motion activated spy cameras with night vision are much the same as any other security camera. 

If you would like to read about these features in more detail, visit this page

For each product that I review I have created a spec list, which gives you access to the most important features at a glance. 

I have included eleven features on this list and they are:

  • Resolution
  • Field of view
  • Format
  • Storage
  • Connection
  • Power
  • Night Vision
  • Motion Activation
  • Position
  • App 
  • Live View

[1] Cam Mall’s Clock Hidden Camera

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Resolution: 1080p

Field of View: Not specified

Format: Photos | Video

Storage: SD Card (64GB) | Cloud

Connection: WiFi | Bluetooth

Power: Battery (5 Hours Full Charge) | Power cable

Night Vision Range: 12 IR LEDs (940nm)

Motion Activation: Phone Alert 

Position: Indoor  | Outdoor

App: iOS | Android

Live View: Yes

This is the first of two spy camera clocks in my comparison.

Both of these devices work as simple digital clocks with blue digits.

And these camera clocks are best suited to the bedroom as they look exactly like the type of alarm clock you would have on a bedside cabinet.

You might place it in a living room or a kitchen but I think it might look a little odd and out of place in those locations.

There is nothing about the Cam Mall spy camera clock that stands out amongst all the other hidden cameras in my comparison.

It has a solid set of specs, none of which are utterly amazing though.

After it detects motion it does two things.

Firstly it will notify you via the app and send you three snapshots.

Secondly, it will begin to record a short video clip which it will store on an SD card (which you will need to buy.)

In terms of night vision, I couldn’t find any information about the range of it.

Although it does have 12 infrared LEDs (and most spy cameras seem to only have about six). And so that makes it above average. And the type of infrared used is totally invisible to the human eye, which is important if it is being used in a bedroom.

Other features to quickly draw your attention to, include 1080p resolution and that it has a built in rechargeable battery which will last for 5 hours on a full charge.

But if you prefer, this clock can be powered using the power cable.

Although, the general feedback about this clock is a little disappointing, buyers rated its motion detection and night vision abilities highly.

And its build quality and the picture quality also received a lot of praise.

[2] McStree Hidden Camera in Clock

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Resolution: 1080p

Field of View: 150°

Format: Photos | Video

Storage: SD Card  | Cloud

Connection: WiFi (2.4 Ghz) | Bluetooth

Power: Battery | Power cable

Night Vision: Yes. 5m.

Motion Activation: Notifications

Position: Indoor  | Outdoor 

App: iOS | Android | Web

Live View: Yes

Much like the first spy clock, the McStree clock has a decent set of specs but no more.

But it is much more highly rated than the Cam Mall clock.

Buyers think that the night vision and picture quality are simply outstanding.

The clock is able to detect motion and it will send you a notification via the app and you will be able to view some snapshots too.

If you set it up it will send you a motion detection email with snapshots as well.

The clock will record a short video after a motion detection event and it can even be set to record continuously onto an SD card which you will need to buy separately.

The McStree hidden camera clock has a night vision range of about 5 meters or 15 feet.

It only uses six infrared LEDs and not twelve.

Other features that I should mention include the 1080p video resolution but you can set a lower resolution if you want to via the app.

Like the Cam Mall clock above, this hidden camera clock can be powered via a built in rechargeable battery or by a power cable. I couldn’t find any information about how long the battery lasts.

The next set of motion activated and night vision cameras in my comparison can all be considered spy cameras because of their size.

These cameras are not built into alarm clocks, picture frames or bluetooth speakers, they are just spy cameras because they are so small that they can easily be hidden.

And the next 5 cameras come in different shapes (but not sizes.) Some are tiny cubes, others are stick like, whilst others are more rounded.

[3] Ansteker Mini WiFi Camera

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Specs

Resolution: 1080p

Field of View: 150°

Format: Photos | Video

Storage: SD Card (128 GB) | Cloud

Connection: WiFi (2.4 Ghz) | Bluetooth

Power: Battery | Power cable

Night Vision: Yes. Range 15 ft. 

Motion Activation: Notification

Position: Indoor  | Outdoor 

App: iOS | Android | Web

Live View: Yes

The top rated mini spy camera has to be the Ansteker Mini WiFi Camera.

It will connect to a phone or tablet via an app, if it detects motion it will notify you via the app and then send you a photo.

And the motion will trigger a video clip which can be anywhere from 1 to 20 minutes long.

It’s night vision comes courtesy of six infrared LEDs that mean that the camera can see objects up to 15 to 20 feet away.

Other notable features include that it records video in full 1080p HD.

Circular in shape, it comes with two magnets which enable it to be mounted securely on any metallic surface.

And it comes with a best in class field of view which is 150°.

[4] Simplecam

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Specs

Resolution: 1080p

Field of View: 140°

Format: Photos | Video

Storage: SD Card (32 GB)  | Cloud

Connection: WiFi  | Bluetooth

Power: Battery (60 Mins) | Power cable

Night Vision: Yes. Range not specified. 

Motion Activation: Yes

Position: Indoor  | Outdoor 

App: iOS ? | Android ? | Web ?

Live View: No

This is the most popular mini spy camera in my comparison but it has one fatal flaw.

It does not connect to your phone or tablet via an app.

Which is strange because it does detect motion and it has night vision.

But without an app you will not be alerted immediately after an event or be able to connect to your camera live.

To view any footage you need to physically remove the micro SD card and slot it into a card reader or your PC.

And what’s the point of that?

Other features to draw your attention to include the 1080p video resolution and the 140° field of view, which are pretty typical specs for this type of product.

But another disadvantage of this product is that if you buy a micro SD card to use for storage, only cards up to 32 GB capacity are compatible- many other cameras allow cards with a 128 GB capacity.

[5] ODRVM Hidden Camera

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Specs

Resolution: 1080p

Field of View: 150°

Format: Photos | Video

Storage: SD Card (128 GB)  | Cloud

Connection: WiFi (2.4 Ghz) | Bluetooth

Power: Battery | Power cable

Night Vision: Not specified

Motion Activation: Sensitivity | Notifications

Position: Indoor  | Outdoor 

App: iOS | Android | Web

Live View: Yes

Our next mini spy camera is another circular shaped camera from a company called ODRVM.

Fortunately, unlike the previous product, this camera will connect to your phone via an app which gives you real time motion detection alerts and the ability to connect to the camera live.

In terms of its motion detection capabilities, a unique feature of this camera is that you can adjust the sensitivity with which it detects motion.

It has seven different levels of sensitivity, which is incredibly helpful because it can be adjusted depending on whether the camera is in a really busy place or a quieter area.

Every time motion is detected, you will be notified via the app and if you have an SD card installed then the camera will begin to record footage.

We know slightly less about its night vision capabilities.

Like many of the other mini cameras in this comparison, the ODRVM has six infrared LEDs that it uses and which gives it a range of about 18 feet.

Best in class features to draw your attention to include a 150° field of view, 1080p resolution an SD card capacity of 128 GB and a magnetic body which means that it can be mounted on any metallic surface,

This camera has received lots of good feedback from buyers who love its picture quality and the accessories that come with the camera.

[6] ZZCP’s Waterproof Spy Camera

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Specs

Resolution: 1080p

Field of View: 140°

Format: Photos | Video

Storage: SD Card (128 GB) | Cloud

Connection: WiFi (2.4 Ghz) | Bluetooth

Power: Battery  (100 mins) | Power cable

Night Vision: Yes. Range not specified. 

Motion Activation: Notifications

Position: Indoor  | Outdoor (comes with a case.)

App: iOS | Android

Live View: Yes

The next camera from ZZCP has one feature that makes it unique- it comes with a waterproof case.

And so, if you were looking for a multi- functional camera that you can use for security purposes and also as an action camera, then you might just be in luck.

The camera will detect motion and then send a notification via the app and you can view a snapshot of the event.

Night vision is possible with the help of six infrared LEDs, although there are no details on the kind of range that this would give you.

Other highlights from this camera include; 100 minute battery life, 128 GB SD card capacity and 1080p resolution.

Lots of people have left feedback after using this camera and it has generally been rated as OK.

The two most highly rated features of the camera are its motion detection and night vision and these features are rated very, very highly.

Some criticisms of the camera include the fact that the instructions are written in very poor English.

[7] ENJI Mini Cop Camera

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Specs

Resolution: 1080p

Field of View: Not specified

Format: Photos | Video

Storage: SD Card (32 GB) | Cloud

Connection: WiFi | Bluetooth

Power: Battery  | Power cable

Night Vision Range: Not Specified

Motion Activation: Yes

Position: Indoor  | Outdoor

App: iOS | Android

Live View: No

Unfortunately, the Enji mini cop camera is another camera that doesn’t use an app to connect to your phone.

In fact, it could be a twin or a doppelganger of the SimpleCam, which was reviewed above: although it is not as highly rated.

As we have said before , this means that even though the camera detects motion and has night vision, you will not be notified of any motion events in real time and neither can you connect to your camera live.

And so this camera will start recording as soon as it detects motion and it uses six IR LEDs to provide night vision although there are no details about the exact range that night vision has.

From the spec list above, features that are worth drawing to your attention include its 1080p resolution.

But if you want to use an SD card for storage then the maximum capacity is 32 GB which is very low in comparison to other cameras.

And how has it been rated?

It is fair to say that it hasn’t received many ratings and the general feeling is that this camera is OK.

What is pleasing is that motion detection is one of the most liked aspects of this camera and its picture quality also impresses.

However, other uses found that using it was so frustrating because they were never quite sure when the camera was working or when it wasn’t.

Moving away from mini spy cameras…

My next two motion activated spy cameras with night vision are cameras that are built into picture frames.

And picture frames are very versatile because they look at home and a natural part of any room in the house. 

More than that, a picture frame that is hanging on the wall with give you a perspective or an angle to film from that none of the other cameras in this comparison will give you.

After all, you cannot hang a digital clock radio with an embedded camera in it on the wall, can you?

[8] Facamword Wireless Photo Frame With Nanny Cam

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Specs

Resolution: 1080p

Field of View: 110°

Format: Photos | Video

Storage: SD Card (128 GB)  | Cloud

Connection: WiFi (2.4 Ghz) | Bluetooth

Power: Battery (6- 7 Hours)| Power cable

Night Vision: Yes. Range not specified. 

Motion Activation: Notifications

Position: Indoor  | Outdoor 

App: iOS | Android | Web

Live View: Yes

Of the two picture frames, this is my favourite because it records video at a higher resolution (1080p vs 720p) and it has a much larger viewing angle (110° vs 65°.)

But it works in much the same way as the frame that I review below.

Connecting to your phone or tablet via an app, this picture frame will send you a notification after detecting motion and it will record a video clip of between 10 and 60 seconds long.

The two frames also have a similar battery life of around 6 hours on a full charge.

And it has night vision although I cannot find any information about how many infrared LEDs that it uses or its range.

From the spec list other features to draw your attention to include that it will work with 128 GB micro SD cards.

[9] Fuvision Hidden Camera Picture Frame

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Specs

Resolution: 720p

Field of View: 65°

Format: Photos | Video

Storage: SD Card (128 GB)  | Cloud

Connection: WiFi (2.4 Ghz) | Bluetooth

Power: Battery (365 Days) | Power cable

Night Vision: 8m

Motion Activation: Yes

Position: Indoor  | Outdoor 

App: iOS | Android | Web

Live View: Yes

This picture frame can be connected to your phone using an app.

When it detects motion, it will send a notification via the app and you will then be able to watch a video clip of the event which can be anything from 10 seconds to 60 seconds.

It has a night vision range of about 20 feet, using built in infrared LEDs.

From the spec list above, perhaps the most amazing feature is the battery life. On a full charge, the battery will keep working for a whole year if it is only triggered six times per day.

It is compatible with high capacity SD cards and 128 GB ones can be used.

Unfortunately, this camera only records footage at a resolution of 720p and not 1080p and its viewing angle is very, very poor.

[10] Yumfond Hidden Camera Bluetooth Speaker

[10] Yumfond Hidden Camera Bluetooth Speaker

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Specs

Resolution: 1080p (25fps)

Field of View: 90°

Format: Photos | Video

Storage: SD Card (128 GB)   | Cloud

Connection: WiFi (2.4 Ghz) | Bluetooth

Power: Battery (1800 mAh) | Power cable

Night Vision: Yes, not specified

Motion Activation: Yes

Position: Indoor  | Outdoor 

App: iOS | Android | Web

Live View: Yes

If you like listening to music and you also want to spy camera, then this little gem will be of interest to you.

A Bluetooth speaker connects will connect to your phone so that you can listen to music or podcasts and although the Yumfond is only small, the sound quality is very good.

But what you really want it for is the camera.

The camera embedded in the speaker will detect motion and if you have installed the phone app, you will be sent a notification and you can view three snapshots of the event.

It also has night vision but I cannot find any details about how large the range will be.

Looking at the spec list, features to draw your attention include; good quality 1080p video resolution at a frame rate of 25 frames per second, which is high.

A 90° field of view is not that great for a spy camera but a compatibility with 128 GB micro SD cards is.

And finally the speaker can be powered by a battery which after a full charge will last about three hours.