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Arlo Pro 3 Review

Arlo Security Cam with 2K Resolution, Siren & Spotlight

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Arlo Pro 3 Camera

The Arlo Pro 3 the latest generation of the Arlo Pro series, the third in succession. It has 2K video resolution, color night mode, an on-board siren, and on-board spotlight, as well as an updated magnetic mount design. Overall, we were impressed with this camera and the new features over the Pro 2. But bear caution, the Pro 3 requires a subscription if you want to take advantage of the Cloud-Based storage.Check Price

Pros

  • Expanded field of view; up to 160°
  • On-board spotlight – great for night mode
  • Improved picture with HDR, 2K resolution and color night view

Cons

  • Does not include any cloud-based storage without a subscription
  • Pro 3 battery pack is not compatible with Pro or Pro 2 battery charger (a potential con if you have many Arlo devices).

What’s new Arlo Pro 3?

Here’s a quick list of new features on the Arlo Pro 3 that aren’t included on older Arlos.

  • 2K resolution (Arlo Pro 2 has 1080p)
  • 160° field of view (30° more than the Arlo Pro 2)
  • HDR. provides brighter highlights to the image and a wider range of color detail; In addition, this technology also makes it possible to have colored video, even in night mode.
  • LED spotlight integrated into camera body
Arlo Pro 3 camera
Arlo Pro 3 camera

Performance

Video: Day

Great

Video: Night

Great

Audio

Good

App

Good

10 SECOND SUMMARY: The video quality of the Arlo Pro 3 was great, when used indoors or outdoors. Regardless of the light available, the Pro 3 generates full-color footage and the camera spotlight helps to add extra illumination in dark environments.

Video: Day vs. Night

In an indoor room with natural daylight, the video quality was clear. There was a good degree of contrast between like colors and materials and the clarity was crisp and defined.

Arlo Pro 3 camera - indoor video quality
Arlo Pro 3 camera – indoor video quality

Outdoors in natural daylight yielded similar results. The footage was clear and easy to decipher figures as they moved in and out of frame.

Arlo Pro 3 camera - outdoor video quality
Arlo Pro 3 camera – outdoor video quality

At night, the video quality was equally as impressive. The Pro 3 offers color video footage at night which really enhances the clarity and definition of the figures on screen.

Arlo Pro 3 camera - night vision indoors
Arlo Pro 3 camera – night vision indoors

The image below is placed on an outside building that picks up some light from the camera’s spotlight as well as an adjacent floodlight on the exterior wall.

Arlo Pro 3 camera - night vision outdoors
Arlo Pro 3 camera – night vision outdoors

The image below shows it mounted a further distance away from the wifi router and also further away from the exterior lights. You can see, when the network connection is poorer, the video may get a little granular.

Arlo Pro 3 camera - night vision outdoors
Arlo Pro 3 camera – night vision outdoors

Whether it’s Arlo or another security camera, when dealing with wifi, the better the bandwidth the better your image quality is going to be.

RELATED See more Modern Castle home security camera reviews.

Audio

Audio on the Arlo Pro 3 is better than what you’ll get with the Arlo Pro 2, Pro original or older cameras.

Unlike older Arlo cameras that only use half-duplex, the Arlo Pro 3 is full-duplex.

Arlo Pro 3 camera sensor
Arlo Pro 3 camera sensor

What’s the difference?

  • Half Duplex: allows audio to come in and go out, but only one at a time (example: think of a walkie-talkie)
  • Full Duplex: allows audio to come in and go out simultaneously (example: think of a telephone).

The Arlo App

The Arlo Pro 3 uses the same app that is used for all other Arlo camera. Using the app and pairing the camera to your wifi network enables extra features, like:

  • View live feed
  • Set up modes
  • Timeline viewer (24-hours for free)
  • Add a new device

How user-friendly is the Arlo app?

It’s easy to view your video feed, change back and forth betweeen different cameras, add a device, or look back on past footage.

Arlo app - video timeline history
Arlo app – video timeline history

You can also access some general features including:

  • Armed: arms the system and alerts you of any motion detection
  • Disarmed: turns off the motion detection feature
  • Schedule: sets up schedules for when the system needs to be more or less alert, based on your personal settings
  • Geofencing: uses your location to help determine when motion detection may be most important

Want to see more from Arlo?

Arlo Design

Overall, the design of the Arlo Pro 3 doesn’t deviate a lot from the design seen on the Arlo Pro 2 or even the Arlo original.

The Arlo Pro 3 has a slightly more rounded body compared to previous versions , which helps provide room for the spotlight at the top.

Arlo Pro 3 camera design
Arlo Pro 3 camera design

This cam has the white trim with a black face, similar to the Pro 2, and the white glossy shell, which is consistent across all Arlo Pro cameras.

What about the mount?

The base is a bit more pronounced on the Arlo Pro 3 that I think helps to provide a more stable connection when sitting or connecting to the magnetic mount.

With the Arlo Pro 3, you can opt for one of two different style mounts:

  1. Magnetic mount (included with camera)
  2. Hardware mount (sold separately)
Arlo Pro 3 camera on magnetic mount
Arlo Pro 3 camera on magnetic mount

The magnetic mount allows you to wirelessly attach the camera. This also allows you to quickly take down the camera to charge the battery, etc.

Arlo Pro 3 mounted with hardware mount
Arlo Pro 3 mounted with hardware mount

If you’re concerned with theft, you could also opt for the mount that screws into the back of the camera. This takes a bit longer to uninstall, but does provide a more secure connection.

Motion & Sound Detection

On the Arlo Pro 3, motion and sound detection is pretty similar to the detection capabilties on the Pro 2.

The differences here are:

  1. Field of View: The Pro 3 can see up to 160° around the area, while the Pro 2 maxes out at 130°.
  2. Advanced Audio: The Pro 3 also had full duplex audio, allowing you to speak and hear on-site audio at the same time.

You can create custom motion zones that will enhance security of the areas you deem to be most important.

How does it work?

When motion is detected from the Arlo Pro 3 camera, you will receive a push notification on your smartphone.

Once you receive the notification, you can choose how to respond.

  1. Ignore the alert.
  2. View the video playback of the activity.
  3. Audibly speak through your phone or enable live-stream audio.
  4. Engage the audible in-camera siren (up to 100 dB).

FACT CHECK: The Arlo Pro and Arlo Pro 2 have a siren as well, but the siren emits through the base station and not through the camera itself.

Relatvie size of the Arlo Pro 3 camera
Relatvie size of the Arlo Pro 3 camera

Top Features

Some of the top features of the Arlo Pro 3 camera include:

  • Motion Notifications: sends a push notification to your smartphone when the camera detects motion in the camera’s view
  • Custom motion zones: customize exact areas where you want more sensitive motion or sound alerts
  • Duplex audio: allows you to talk through the camera as well as hear what is going on on-site simultaneously.
  • App Control: view the camera footage from your smartphone or other device using the Arlo app
  • Multiple Pairing: pair multiple cameras together (indoor or outdoor) for whole-home security

NOTE: The Arlo Pro 3 does not include any cloud-based storage without a subscription plan.

What’s in the box?

Out of the box, the Arlo Pro 3 comes with many of the same parts and accessories as the older generation Pros.

Parts & Accessories include:

  • Arlo Pro 3 wireless camera
  • Rechargeable battery pack
  • Mounting screw (optional)
  • Drywall anchor (optional)
  • Magnetic mount
  • Battery charger and charging cables (USB to micro USB)
  • USB power bank
Arlo Pro 3 camera parts and accessories
Arlo Pro 3 camera parts and accessories

In addition to the parts listed above, you’ll also need a central command center. Arlo has one of two different names for this:

  1. SmartHub
  2. Base Station

Both of these devices, regardless of name, are designed to communicate with the Arlo cameras and provide a central point for wifi connectivity.

So which device is right for you?

Check out our quick guide on the similarities and differences between Smarthubs and Base Stations.

FAQ: For the sake of our performance tests and review, we used the Arlo SmartHub (VMB5000).

 Arlo SmartHubArlo Base StationArlo Base Station
arlo smart hub
Arlo SmartHub
arlo base station
Arlo Base Station (newer)
arlo base station
Arlo Base Station (older)
ModelVMB5000VMB4000VMB3500
Generation3.02.01.0
CompatibilityArlo, Pro, Pro 2, Pro 3, and UltraArlo, Pro & Pro 2 CamerasArlo, Pro & Pro 2 Cameras
Local StorageYes; Connect a Micro SD to hubYes; connect USB drive to baseNone; connect to router for cloud-based storage
Smart SirenYesYesYes
PriceCheck PriceCheck PriceCheck Price

Setup & Usability

Getting started with the Arlo Pro 3 involves a few simple steps.

  1. Unbox the Arlo and remove all original packaging.
  2. Unlock the battery compartment and insert rechargeable battery pack.
  3. Bring the camera close to the base station or SmartHub.
  4. Sync camera to base station.

You’ll know that the camera is correctly paired if the LED lights indicate the connection.

How to Pair the Arlo Pro to the Smart App?

  1. Install the Arlo app to your smartphone.
  2. Follow the prompts as the app tries to locate your camera.
  3. Once the app locates it, it should be quick and easy to pair the devices quickly and easily.
Arlo app camera setup

How easy is Arlo to install?

Install for the Arlo Pro 3 is basically the same as previous gen Arlo Pro cams.

You can choose to install indoors or outdoors, based on your needs.

For indoor or outdoor install, there are three different techniques you could use:

  1. Sitting flat on a shelf or table (recommended for indoor use only): The method obviously requires no tools or hardware. Just place the wireless Pro 3 on a flat surface and walk away. Done.
  2. Connected to the magnetic mount: You can also install the mount to a flat wall and secure as needed. Arlo provides drywall anchors for indoor use, or you could opt for something more substantial if using outdoors. Once the mount is installed, you can simply place the camera close to the mount until it magnetically “snaps” into place. Adjust the camera angle as needed and you’re good to go.
  3. Connected to a hardware mount: For maximum security, Arlo also offers a hardware mount which is sold separately. You can check it out here. This mount screws into the wall and then allows the camera to screw into the mount. This threaded hardware connection provides additional security and further helps discourage theft or tampering of the camera.

Power Options

Whether you install indoor or outdoors, there are are a few options for power.

Arlo Pro 3 battery pack installed
Arlo Pro 3 battery pack installed

Options include:

  1. Wireless
  2. Battery powered (rechargeable battery included)
  3. AC power that plugs into a wall outlet (required for continuous video)
  4. Solar panel (solar panel sold separately)

How easy is it to use?

The Arlo Pro 3 is designed to work with any of the Arlo Base Stations or SmartHubs. So let’s talk next steps…

Which option is right for you?

The older model base stations are a little less intuitive and lack a few of the features that the new SmartHub can offer.

For the easiest setup with the most options, Arlo recommends the SmartHub (Vmb5000), which is their newest hub to hit the market.

Arlo Smart Hub
Arlo Smart Hub

Does Arlo require a subscription?

Arlo cameras up until the Pro 3 did not require a subscription and technically the Pro 3 doesn’t either, but there is one major difference.

Older Arlo camera offer up to 7-days of free Cloud storage, but video storage on the Pro 3 require a paid subscription.

Arlo Pro 3 power cord
Arlo Pro 3 power cord

Without an Arlo paid subscription, the Pro 3 provides the following features:

  • Live remote video streaming
  • Limited local storage
  • Email motion alerts & push notifications
  • Support for up to 5 cameras
  • 2-way audio
  • Custom motion zones

With a paid Arlo subscription, you can get Cloud-based video storage as well as higher resolution storage.

The two smart Arlo packages are:

  • Premier
  • Elite

Arlo Smart Premier

  • Cost (single camera): $2.99 /monthly
  • Cost (up to 5 cameras): $9.99 / monthly
  • Description: offers rolling 30 days of video storage with up to 2K video resolution for 1 or 5 cameras

Arlo Smart Elite

  • Cost (single camera): $4.99 / monthly
  • Cost (up to 5 cameras): $14.99 / monthly
  • Description: offers rolling 30 days of video storage with up to 4K video resolution for 1 or 5 cameras

Is the Arlo Pro 3 a good value?

The value of the Arlo Pro 3 depends a lot on what features are specifically important to you.

Some obvious advantages of the Pro 3 over older Arlo models include:

  • Improved 2K video resolution
  • Full duplex audio
  • On-board siren
  • On-board spotlight

Of course, the biggest disadvantage of the Pro 3 is the lack of Cloud-based storage. If you want to digitally store video footage on the Cloud, you’ll need to opt for the paid subscription.

Arlo Pro 3
Arlo Pro 3

OIder version of the Pro cam include up to 7-days of Cloud-video storage available for free so this is a big change for the Pro 3 and could have a negative impact on the overall value.

Arlo Pro 3 Specifications

 Arlo Pro 3
TypeIndoor/Outdoor
Video Resolution2K
Night VisionColor
Field of View160°
Motion DetectionYes
2-Way AudioYes
Local StorageYes; USB in base storage
Cloud-Based StorageWith Paid Subscription Only
Smart SirenYes; on camera
Wireless RangeUp to 300'
GeoFencingYes
Amazon AlexaYes
Google AssistantYes
Apple HomekitYes
SmartThingsYes
3 Second Look-BackYes
Warranty1-Year Warranty
Returns30 days via Amazon.com
PriceCheck Price

Should you buy the Arlo Pro 3 Camera?

I would recommend the Arlo Pro 3 if you’re looking for the following in a security camera:

  • Improved video resolution: The Pro 3 has 2K video resolution. Picture quality was fanastic. Colored night mode was a nice feature as well.
  • Simple setup & usability: It’s easy to get up and running with the Pro 3. The app is easy to use, install takes approx. 5 minutes, and it pairs well with other devices.
  • Don’t mind paying for Cloud Storage: One issue that could be a deal-breaker for some is the issue of Cloud storage. On older versions of the Arlo, Cloud-based video storage is available for free for up to 7 days. If you need more than that, you can opt for the paid subscription. But with the Arlo Pro 3, you’ll have to subscribe if you want any Cloud-based video storage at all.

Click here to learn more about or to buy the Arlo Pro 3 camera.

2K Resolution, Great Picture Quality
  • 97%
    Design - 97%
  • 94%
    Performance - 94%
  • 96%
    Quality - 96%
  • 97%
    Usability - 97%
  • 94%
    Value - 94%
96%

Summary

The Arlo Pro 3 is a home security camera capable of recording footage at 2K resolution. In our tests, we found the picture quality to be excellent in both day time and night mode. Audio quality is more than sufficient for what most users need. Arlo does offer cloud storage, but only with a paid subscription (value scores takes a little hit from that).

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