What is the best long range wireless camera for identification at 1-3 miles or 1-5km day and night?

Long range (distance) outdoor security cameras (systems) let you see and record clear videos hundreds of feet away from their mounting point.

To monitor a barn, a farm, a deep driveway, front and back yards, a large parking lot and recognize faces and license plates, you'll need long range wireless camera for both day and night.

Editor's Note: You don't have to get a dedicated long range surveillance camera to watch your property located miles away and labor your wits on how to run wires and boost the WiFi signals that far.

Actually, a 4G LTE security camera can well handle these situations, such as a gate, rural house at distance. Click here to see how it works and the best budget pick for this kind of long range surveillance camera.

Continue to read if you want a long range WiFi CCTV camera to cover the whole area of your large property like the lake area below, captured by Reolink RLC-410 (Click to check the full video).

Reolink Captures Lake Area


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What Makes a Good Long Range Security Camera Outdoor

To help you pick up a reliable long range wireless camera outdoor, you should consider at least the 4 points: HD, excellent night vision, optical zoom lens, and long range wireless.

A Long Range Security Camera Should Have High Definition

Some top security camera brands nowadays offer long range CCTV cameras with extra high definition like 1080p, 4MP, 5MP and even 4K, which outshine the old digital surveillance equipment and capture images and videos with great details even when monitoring a large outdoor area from a distance.

So what high definition should your long range video surveillance camera have? Can 1080p IP security cameras be enough for identification of license plate and people at a distance of 200 meters from the control room switch?

Calculate the PPF (pixels per foot) of your long range security camera, and you will know exactly how far your camera can see.

The calculation formula is: PPF=the camera's resolution height/the field of view.

This chart shows you the PPF of long range IP cameras in different HD quality, to help you choose cameras like "best CCTV IP HD long range surveillance camera to identify someone at the 1km distance".

Long Range Security Camera Outdoor

And generally, a long range security camera needs at least 40 PPF in order to identify the facial expressions and plate number. Click here to learn more about the resolution influence on long distance object recognition.

Long Range Outdoor Security Cameras Feature Excellent Night Vision

Daytime video quality alone is never enough for a good long range WiFi camera. For a certain person's face identification and the 24/7 video monitoring at night, especially in rural areas with no street lights, night vision is an indispensable security feature.

Night video quality decides how far you can see with your long range outdoor security camera in low light conditions, or even dark conditions.

Long range night vision security cameras usually have IR lights built-in to identify people and events at night. Usually, the more quantity and the higher quality IR lights your long range IP camera has, the clearer video and longer distance your camera will see in a poor light condition.

Reolink RLC-423

PoE Waterproof PTZ Security Camera

5-Megapixel Super HD; 360° Pan & 90° Tilt ; 4X Optical Zoom; 190ft Infrared Night Vision; Smart Motion Detection; Remote Live View & Control.

Maybe I should clarify that IR is actually invisible. Some night security camera manufacturers put some visible red IR LEDs in cameras to purposely be visible as a deterrent. A night thief who sees the red LED lights is likely to skip the next house, which effectively stops a home break-in.

What's worth mentioning is that, most Reolink long range cameras have remarkable night vision, with long IR distance of 100ft or even up to 190 feet.

Reolink has posted many night captures by its customers on Twitter, and Reolink users have been uploading their recorded sharp night videos on YouTube. Below is just one of those samples captured by RLC-410 series product (Reviewed by SecurityBros, a top surveillance system reviewer)

Reolink RLC-410

PoE Bullet IP Security Camera with Audio

5MP/4MP Super HD; Outdoor/Indoor Protection; 100ft Infrared Night Vision; Audio Recording; Mobile Remote Access & Control.

Outdoor Long Range Security Camera Night Vision

Outdoor Security Cameras with Long Range Should Contain Optical Zoom Lens

The best long distance surveillance camera should be equipped with varifocal zoom lens, rather than fixed lens.

A varifocal lens security camera with a long range allows you to zoom in to view more details, and zoom out to see a wider area. And for the zoom lens, optical zoom is far more advanced than digital zoom, since the latter will destroy the video quality while the former won't.

Long distance night vision cameras with 4X optical zoom usually feature 2.8 mm – 12 mm zoom lens with a viewing angle of 36 – 100 degrees. (For example, RLC-511W, a 5MP HD long range outdoor night vision security camera.

When you are choosing a long range security camera, you should first consider how large your outdoor area is. Generally 4X optical zoom security cameras work perfectly when monitoring your front/back yard, and your parking lot, with identifying license plates and the general information of people.

In addition to the optical zoom lens, the best long range IP cameras are also featured with endless pan and tilt to cover every single angle. So, no intruders would hide or escape without your notice.

Long Range Wireless Security Cameras Also Mean Long WiFi Range

Numerous users prefer wireless outdoor security IP cameras rather than wired ones. If you are one of them, your long range outdoor surveillance camera not only refers to how far the camera can see, but it also refers to "a long WiFi range".

2 most common complaints about long range outdoor wireless security cameras are low signal strength and poor connectivity.

So the best long range wireless surveillance camera outdoor would be dual-band wireless cameras. They usually allow a long range radio signal and video transmission over the air for as long as 250 feet. You can install this camera wherever you like in an outside open area as long as the WiFi signal range allows.

Hold Up: Check out this post to learn practical ways to deal with WiFi interference and boost WiFi signal.

If the long range WiFi camera still can't reach your monitoring places by any means, then you will need a 4G cellular security camera, which works as another perfect and easy solution to long distance monitoring, without wires and WiFi network.

Best Outdoor Long Range Security Camera

"Best HD IP surveillance PTZ camera for long range distance with IR infrared night vision that will work in outdoor extreme temperatures?"

To find out a long range outdoor video security camera with all the advanced features is not an easy job. Lucky you, you've got 2 best picks here, both are easy to use and install, to suit your every security need.

Long Range Night Vision Security Camera: Reolink RLC-423

Besides the features talked above for a good long range CCTV camera outdoor, like the 5MP high definition, 4X optical zoom lens, an excellent night vision up to 190ft, RLC-423 is also a pan-tilt-zoom camera.

Best Pick

Reolink RLC-423 (5MP)

Best Long Range CCTV Camera

Featured in top tier tech media, including Vueville, Androidpit, Securitybros, etc., this camera is one of the most popular PTZ long range security camera on the market.

Take a look

And a user applies this CCTV camera for seamless surveillance of the long distance water area in Norway. Check out the spectacular view below.

Long Range Wireless Camera: Reolink Go

"I have to install a long range CCTV camera which is almost 700 meter far from the DVR and monitor. Is it okay if I use a CAT5 UTP wire? Will I use a video balun? How about the power supply?"

"One camera needed for a gate located around 600 feet from the house, but I'd rather not try to bury 600′ of Cat5."

You don't have to. In fact, you don't need to worry anything mentioned above if you choose the 4G long range wireless camera Reolink Go.

Running on 4G/3G LTE network and rechargeable battery power (solar powered optional), this kind of long range WiFi camera could be placed hundreds of miles away from your main house or the monitoring center, with no wires and power outlets limitation, offering you a real easy solution for long distance monitoring.

Best Pick 2

Reolink Go

Best Long Range WiFi Camera

Recommended by top tie media like Engadget, PCWorld, Techradar, Stuff as "a powerful 4G-enabled, solar-powered security camera with a ton of features, modes and applications (Digitaltrends Review)".

Take a look

Learn more about the long range wireless camera with starlight night vision:

To take the above top long range outdoor security cameras home right now, you can go to Reolink online store or buy from Amazon.


  • doc who

    I need a long range camera night vision long range radio signal. wide angel that can see miles from a 1200 foot mountain top. that can be controlled zoomed in pan out. move around. adjustable from a computer. I'm watching a highway that has semi trucks transporting drugs other illegal things major world crime. in the south. i'm watching from 4 different mountains. camera box 5 angles surrounding them. each mountain . the mountains are with in 25 miles of each other. what are the best cameras for that?

  • Will Hollis

    Why is the night vision picture above claimed to be from a Reolink camera when Hikvision uses this same photo and video on their website? I like the quality of the photo but now do not know which one to buy... Which company is being dishonest?

  • DEEPAK RAI Chowdhary

    looking for long range survilence cctv camera with zoom facility on 24×7 basis up to 5 KM. Is there any product available with you and cost?

    • Hi DEEPAR RAI,
      Thanks for your interest to our cameras. But it's not likely for any security camera to see as far as 5 KM. You may try to get some long range PTZ security cameras and install them somewhere nearer to the monitoring area, and get a NVR in your home for 24/7 video recording. In that case, the RLC-423 (https://reolink.com/product/rlc-423/) and an NVR (https://reolink.com/product/rln8-410/) will be right for you.

  • cliffleaper/Laura

    If a person had a steep, just under 1/3 mile long, and with a couple of winding curves driveway, lined all around by 50-100 ft tall fir trees, which needs monitoring at the bottom (gate area), to be received/viewed wirelessly at the top, inside a structure.. with the trees situation, is this even possible? The land is densely forested with tall fir trees.

    We are looking for some sound advice. If your equipment would work, great, but we are concerned due to the trees. How to keep the wireless connection through those trees? We've got a very good boosted signal at the top, which is opened up from the trees, FYI.

    Thanks in advance for your assistance.

    • Hi there, you need to check whether there is WiFi signal in your gate area. A simple way to do this is to test with your smartphone. If your smartphone could still receive the WiFi signal, Reolink wireless cameras RLC-411WS (https://reolink.com/product/rlc-411ws/) will work well in your situation. And it's advised to consult a professional installer about it.
      Hope this helps, and let us know if you have further quesitons.

      • cliffleaper/Laura

        Thanks so much! Why didn't I think of that? Tomorrow I'll find out; too late, too stormy tonight.

        Thanks ever so much. I'll be in touch via phone next.

      • Ron Renaud

        l too would also like to know about a long driveway 1/3 mile with trees in way and no Wi Fi available. how to make it wireless to the base station. Is there any product you have that can do this?

  • Debra Futch

    i own a home 200 miles away. it has no electric wires going to it. all power has been dropped from the house. people has been messing around the house. what is the best wireless camera to put up. i need to see it on my phone 200 miles away

    • Hi Debra,
      Thank you for reaching out to us! If you want to go wireless and cut the electric wires as well, the best choice will be a battery-powered security camera, like Reolink Argus (https://reolink.com/product/argus/). It's totally wire-free, and you can see it on your phone 200 miles away, if montoring area has WiFi access. Yet, you could still get the saved footage in SD card to check who has been there messing around your house, even if there is no network. Hope the information helps, and if you have more questions, please do not hesitate to ask here anytime.

  • bkrishna pse

    we are in construction field and and have requirement of outdoor( highways) capturing for the range of 1 kilometer radius , is there any suitable solution for this

  • Girlzcout

    Need an outdoor wire free security camera that can handle at least 900 feet distance. Located in Quebec Canada in needs to handle the cold weather. Please advise Thank you

    • Amanda

      Hi there, do you mean the camera is going to be installed 900 feet away from the WiFi router? In that case, the wire-free cameras may not work. According to our test, the maximum WiFi distance is about 250 feet in open areas.

      And please note that the wire-free cameras are generally battery powered which could stop working if the weather is too cold (beyond its working temperature of -10C – 55C). Hope the information helps.

  • Ernest H Key

    I haven't read anything here that talks about long range wifi and or wifi antennas. I have to have a external antenna

    • Amanda

      Hi Ernest, we've tested several WiFi camera models and here are the results you may refer for their optimal WiFi range https://support.reolink.com/hc/en-us/articles/360008743233-The-WiFi-Distance-for-Reolink-WiFi-Cameras?tdsourcetag=s_pctim_aiomsg

      And you can also use a WiFi extender for longer WiFi distance. Hope this helps. 🙂

    • Ernest H Key

      I'm sorry, I didn't give you the hole story. The reason I need a external WiFi antenna is that my house is under ground and the signal can't get out. People who live in metal buildings or have sheet metal for siding have the same problem. I will be at least 150 yards away from any camera that I set up. I can get the antenna up off the groung.
      Thanks for your help.

  • Amanda

    Hi George, the Reolink Argus 2 would be a perfect fit. Check it out https://reolink.com/product/argus-2/

  • Amanda

    Hi there, you may take a look at Reolink PT, https://reolink.com/product/argus-pt/, a 1080p battery-powered wireless security camera that works with Reolink solar panel. If zooming is the feature that you can not miss, then Reolink RLC-423, https://reolink.com/product/rlc-423/, would be a better option. Feel free to contact me if you have further question.

  • Amanda

    Hi Ahsan, you may take a look at Reolink RLC-423, which is a 5MP PoE PTZ outdoor security camera that supports RTSP and auto focus. You may also set up this camera to cruise and patrol automatically via Reolink app or Client as well. Click here, https://reolink.com/product/rlc-423/, to learn more. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me.

  • Amanda

    Hi Amanaki, you may take a look at our battery-/solar-powered security cameras, https://store.reolink.com/battery-security-cameras/. These security cameras (except Reolink Go) work on WiFi and will send you instant alarm when they detect motion events. Also, they come with IP65 weatherproof design so they are good for outdoor environment as well. Featuring outstanding night vision, they can capture sharp images day and night. Feel free to contact me if you have any additional questions.

  • Dal Sanderson

    I need a security cam for the inside of my barn. It has no power and is about 350 feet away from my house. What is my best option?

    • Amanda

      Hello Sanderson, you may take a look at Reolink Go, a 4G LTE battery/solar-powered camera that works without power supply. It would be hard to connect a security cam with WiFi since the barn is far away from your house. So, a 4G cellular security camera would be a better option.
      A YouTuber also put this camera inside his barn and here is a video sample, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aByJrzrpvcE. Learn more about this camera, https://reolink.com/product/reolink-go/. Let me know if you have any questions.

  • Stimpy Elgato

    My driveway is 600' from the road to the garage. The driveway is steep and there is a wall and gate. I need to place a camera near the bottom of the driveway for security. People have done property damage in the past while turning around in the drive so I'd like a camera with high definition. There is power there. We could tap off the wall lights if necessary. What would you recommend for that area? We are having the driveway repaved soon and want to monitor anyone doing damage or trespassing. The area marked with the X is where we need the camera https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/55bd2362780c71db7069519df9dbe5e724eaa68d4339ce7a3f2279239365f646.jpg



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