We all want to take care of the things that matter most to us, but we can’t keep an eye on them all the time.

person holding a mini camera

The good news is there is an affordable solution available, a spy camera. These cameras come in small shapes and sizes and are perfect for covertly recording.  With hundreds of mini cameras in the market today, finding the right one can be daunting. Don’t worry.

GadgetsSpy has made a guide after over 40 hours of research into the best mini cameras around we found the SS Wireless Hidden Cam was the best. This guide includes what to look for and how to choose and many other related topics to help you make an informed buying decision.  

Updated November, 2019 – Top 3 List changed SS Wireless moved up to #1

Best Mini Camera This Year – Top 11

RankingModelResolutionBatteryWIFReviewPrice
#1cam small ss11SS Wireless Hidden Cam (Waterproof) 1080P HD200mahMicroSD Card (32 GB)Read ReviewCheck Latest Price
#2AHD 1080p Wifi Mini Camera1080P HD540mahMicroSD Card (128 GB)Read ReviewCheck Latest Price
#3 CCTV 960P Wifi Mini Camera960PWired OnlyMicroSD card (64 GB)Read ReviewCheck Latest Price

1. SS Waterproof Wireless Camera

Affordable and super small, Waterproof

A miniature yet super powerful Spy Camera, this is the smallest in the world at 0.87 inches and weighs 0.7 ounces.

It can be used as a nanny cam, on a drone or for home security. It can record videos unnoticeably using motion detection on, and has incredible battery life.

This little spy camera is known as one of the smallest and most affordable spy cameras in the market. Because of this combination of affordability and small size we have put it #1 on our list.

Highlights

  • This spy camera uses a motion detection technique. It will start video recording or taking a snapshot when there is movement detected inside the room. This allows the camera to save battery life instead of running full time with useless video. 
  • As a video recorder, the ss 1080P Hidden Mini Camera can provide high resolution and excellent quality videos at 1080P.
  • You are guaranteed to have clear videos and picture. The video recorder can support loop video recording meaning each video file can have a length of 1 to 20 minutes with expandable memory of 32GB.
  • The camera comes with the additional benefit of an led for night vision functionality and because of the motion detection the battery can last up to a week with it on (100 minutes of constant recording).

Resolution:

 1080p

Battery:

200MA

Wifi:

No

Waterproof:

Yes

2. AHD 1080p HD Wifi Mini Camera 

Great Features, Easily Hidden, Most Customizable

This is an impressive mini camera with the best features in our list in a small package. It is high definition, comes with Wifi, motion detection, auto overwrite recording and supports photos.

It also supports real-time video recording or snapshots, which means that when you download the app (it supports both Android and IOS), you can connect the camera to WiFi and record.

Highlights

  • The video is high definition at 1080P resolution. It enables the camera to take pictures instantly, and the video is clear and stable. The resulting picture is more than 12 million pixels, allowing you to see every detail.
  • One of the best features of this one is its wifi capabilities which allow it to support connectivity up to 20 meters away! Just connect with the provided app and your good to go!
  • Aside from the wide viewing angle of 140 degrees, this camera uses motion detection technology that allows the camera to start recording only when there is motion detected within its viewing radius.
  • Once the camera is activated, it records immediately. This saves precious battery life since the camera will work only when there is movement.
  • Another important feature of this camera is the night vision function. With the help of infrared lights attached to the camera, it can record clear video even at night, or when there are low light conditions.
  • A very useful feature especially if you are using the camera in dark locations. It has a built-in lithium battery that can work for up to 60 minutes. 

Resolution:

 1080p

Battery:

540MA

Wifi:

Yes

3. CCTV WiFi Mini Camera

Best Features, Most Value

Our next pick for the best spy camera is the CCTV 960P Wifi Mini Camera.

This camera is similar to the SS models but comes with much more features including WIFI functionality and upgraded design

If you are looking for a small and portable design perfect for home security and other purposes when you need a hidden camera for surveillance this is your goto.

Highlights

  • You can connect the camera to a power outlet. It will make it work continuously for 24 hours. It can support a micro SD card of up to 64GB for memory enough to support long videos.
  • Let’s talk about the videos; this tiny spy camera has a video resolution of 960P at the rate of 30 frames, so you have clear videos and photos. The video automatically overwrites the older videos to replace them with the new ones.
  • WiFi connectivity is necessary for the new mini cameras that are coming out in the market, and this spy camera has the technology.
  • You can download a app that is available for both Android and IOS.
  • Using the app, you can remotely view the feed from the camera anytime and anywhere. The videos are also real time, and you can view them on your tablet or PC too.
  • Another great feature of the 960P WiFi Mini Camera is its motion detection technology, where the camera will start taking videos only when they detect motion within the radius inside the room.
  • In turn, when you have the app, it will send you a notification message in real time when it detects movement in its field vision.
  • The cam also comes with a night vision capacity
  • One note is that this is a wired camera, it does not come with a battery, which is not a big deal since the other mini cams have very short battery life anyway

Resolution:

 1080p

Battery:

Wired Only

Wifi:

Yes

4. Full HD WiFi 1080P Mini Camera

This spy camera is tiny and very easy to install and hide behind objects while recording video or taking photos discretely.

Highlights

  • The video resolution is at 1080P, a clear video quality that you can see even the minute details.
  • The motion detection allows the camera to save on battery life because it will only take videos or photos when the camera detects motion within its scope of vision.
  • The settings for this motion detection are customizable, and it sends a notification to the phone when in an uninvited guests visits your place.
  • As a hidden wireless camera, it provides ease of use. With WiFi connectivity, it allows the camera to send live streaming of videos straight to your mobile phone. Surveillance is easy with this feature and with the alarm function and pushes notifications; by informing you whenever there is movement inside the room, it enhances its security function.
  • The camera derives its power from a 2500mAh battery. You can charge this battery while you are recording. You can also charge it in different ways like the ordinary household power socket, a vehicle power supply, and even a portable power source. No worry about running out of battery power.

What this spy camera is lacking is the night vision feature, it cannot produce a clear video in low light conditions, and some the pictures may appear grainy. However, positioning the camera in the right location can remedy this.

5. PNZEO F3 Mini Cam


Another tiny spy camera that is loaded with great features is this PNZEO F3 Mini Camera. Owing this is very small size, this camera is easy to carry and install.

Highlights

  • You can also connect it to a WiFi network; therefore, you could view the video remotely wherever you are.
  • Another convenience it offers is you don’t have to connect to a network to operate them. All you need is just a push of a button on the camera itself, and you can start taking a photo or taking pictures, like as you would do with an ordinary camera. S
  • ince this spy cam supports 2.4 GHz of WiFi frequency, you only need to download the apps (available for Android and IOS users) or in your PC or Mac and you can start live streaming videos.
  • These videos are real time, and you can even receive a motion detection notification and alarm on your phone once there is a movement detected.
  • It also has playback and extendable memory card for your video files. In terms of video and photo quality, the recorded video has 1080P HD resolution. You will only get crisp and clear videos that can be remotely downloaded using the Apps. This camera can also support 128G micro SD that amounts to about 4 months of videos files. This spy camera has the best lens range with the 140 degrees wide angle.
  • You can take photo and videos on a wider span. You can have the same HD quality video even at night because it is also equipped with seven infrared lights installed as night sight lamps. Working with this camera is easy; it has a back splint and a multipurpose holder for easy transport and installation.
  • Its battery is a 650mA lithium that can support continuous recording of 1.5 hours. You can also charge it with the regular household power source or charge it from your vehicle.

6. SS Mini Cam USB Charger

This is the best mini spy camera for home surveillance because it is concealed in the USB charger, a special design to hide the tiny camera inside. You can use this camera to keep an eye on your babysitter, nanny or housekeeper when you are not at home. You can use it also for your business to make sure that your property and business is safe even when you are not around.

Highlights

  • It has a 90-degree viewing angle with 1080P full HD video output.
  • This means that you can view recorded videos in high definition. The USB charger also serves as protection for the micro SD card.
  • Once this charger with the camera is placed is disconnected from the power source, it will automatically stop its recording to prevent the SD card from being corrupted. This spy camera cannot record video at night because it has no IR sensor, but it does have a motion sensor.
  • Therefore, the camera will start recording once there is a slight movement detected. Using this spy camera is very easy, you just have to plug it into a power source, and the video will start recording.
  • You can download the videos by plugging it into a computer. The memory card inside the USB charger is 32GB and is capable of loop recording. Meaning it automatically overwrites the data once the memory is full.

7. ZZCP Waterproof WiFi Mini Camera


Lauded as the world’s smallest WiFi body camera, it weighs only about .88 ounces and a dimension of 0.6 X 2.05X 0.79 inches.

Highlights

  • In spite of this minute size, it has a 140 degrees wide angle and produces high-quality videos at 1080P. This makes it a good surveillance camera for your home and business because it can capture images without anybody knowing that there is a camera.
  • This small camera is easy to use, you only need to plug in the SD card and turn on the WiFi and the camera, and you can record videos and take a photo instantly. What is good about its design is the lens is encased in a durable waterproof case made of plastic.
  • Hence, this camera is also ideal for use in the outdoors and even in the water. If that is not enough, it also has the bells and whistles that any techy individual is looking for.
  • This camera has motion-activated technology when it senses movements; it automatically sends a notification to your phone via an alarm message and a photo.
  • The camera has six infrared lights to get a clear display even during the night or in low light conditions. It supports a micro SD card with a memory of up to 128GB for a loop recording video.
  • It automatically overwrites the old files to save the new ones when the memory is full. The battery is built-in lithium with 450mA power. You can charge it while recording so you will never run out of battery.

8. YAOAW 1080P Wireless Wi-Fi Mini Camera


Our third pick for the best mini camera is the Yaoawe 1080P wireless Wifi Mini Camera, which is also the smallest in the world. You are looking at a small and portable design perfect for home security and other purposes where you need a hidden camera for surveillance.

Highlights

  • The package comes with eight different styles of lens buttons to keep them hidden from plain sight.
  • This mini cam works on a high capacity 3000mAh of a rechargeable battery that can sustain the camera working around 6 hours or more. As an alternative, you can connect the camera to a power outlet.
  • It will make it work continuously for 24 hours. It can support a micro SD card of up to 64GB for memory enough to support long videos. Let’s talk about the videos; this tiny camera has a video resolution of 1920 X 1080P at the rate of 30 frames, so you have clear videos and photos.
  • The video automatically overwrites the older videos to replace them with the new ones. WiFi connectivity is necessary for the new mini cameras that are coming out in the market, and this spy camera picked up the technology. You can download the app that is available for both Android and IOS.
  • Using the app, you can remotely view the feed from the camera anytime and anywhere. The videos are also real time, and you can view them on your tablet or PC too.
  • Another great feature of SOOSPY 1080P Wireless WiFi Mini Camera is its motion detection technology, where the camera will start taking videos only when they detect motion within the radius inside the room.
  • In turn, when you have the app, it will send you a notification message in real time when it detects movement in its field vision.

The only downside of this mini camera is it does not have night vision capacity, and the videos do not have any sound. However, if the purpose for buying this camera does not need any sound, then this is still a good choice.

9. Aobo Mini Cam


You can keep an eye on your family, backyard, garden, warehouse, home, and office or anywhere you want to see with this AOBO mini camera.

Highlights

  • It is designed with a strong magnet to let you attached this spy camera on any metal. Just look for a perfect spot and set it up. It can support a 2.4 GHz Wifi connection.
  • Therefore, you can monitor any activity inside your property via live streaming to your phone or tablet via the SIP app.
  • The camera has a night vision capability with the six built-in infrared LEDs that emanate light than a human eye cannot see. It is also capable of capturing high definition videos with the 1920 X 1080P resolution.
  • The camera has an expandable memory that can support a micro SD with 128 GB of memory, which is perfect for long videos.
  • On top of all the features mentioned above, this cam has a motion detection sensor that begins to record only when there is motion detected in its area of coverage. When you buy this mini camera, it comes with your choices of different lens covers in all shapes and designs. Its purpose is for your spying to remain hidden by hiding the lens behind ordinary objects. Don’t worry about the lens because it is easy to position.
  • This spy cam is also equipped with a built-in rechargeable lithium battery and a USB charging cable. Running out of battery is out of the question with the charging options. Its battery can last to about an hour when the charge is full.

10. SS11 Wireless Mini Cam

cam small ss11The SS11 Mini Wireless Hidden Camera is an excellent camera because it is the most versatile camera among these spy cameras that made our list. In fact, it is applicable for many uses like as a dash cam or as a substitute for an action camera for biking or attach it to the drone among others.

Highlights

  • It is a perfect companion for many outdoor activities because it is compact and high performing.
  • At home, it can be a security camera or a nanny camera. This mini camera is equipped with six Infrared sensors for night vision function.
  • You can record high-quality videos even during the night or in low light conditions. It can also record in two video resolution 720p and 1080p depending on your choice.
  • The photos and videos are captured with 1.2 megapixels lens.
  • It also has a motion detection feature that can reach up to the range of approximately 5 meters. This tiny spy camera is also capable of audio recording.
  • One major flaw of this tiny spy cam is it is not compatible with WiFi or Bluetooth connectivity. The battery can handle up to 100 minutes of recording when it is fully charged.
  • It can handle continuous operation when it is plugged into a power source all throughout. It has a backup the battery in case you are out of power source.
  • Your recordings and photos are all stored on the micro SD that is expandable up to 32 GB. This nifty camera is so tiny it weighs only about 9 grams making it ideal to hide in many places. It is also easy to mount as the package comes with a variety mounts to satisfy your requirements.

What is a mini hidden camera?

A mini hidden camera is a camera that is capable of capturing video and audio without the subject’s knowledge. If you are looking for a list of the best spy cameras click the link. They are mainly used for surveillance activities although sometimes they are also used for commercial purposes. Spy cameras are hidden in ordinary objects around the home or business. There many different types of these cameras, some of them can be customized to suit the environment and their uses. It can also be wired or wireless. Wired is when the camera is connected to a storage device while wireless is when the camera is transmitting the recording to a receiver within the specified radius.

Buyer’s Guide to Choosing the Best Mini Camera

The quality of information that a spy camera can uncover depends on the hardware. Wireless spy cameras can come in the smallest sizes but full of amazing technology and innovations. Here are the key features that you need to look for to get the best of this cool gadget.

Frame Rate

Videos are made of several still images that are played back in quick succession. The video will appear smoother if the images are replayed faster. This is called the frame rate, and it is measured in frames per second (fps). You need a higher frame rate for better videos. The acceptable frame rate should be faster than 12 fps. Our mini spy cameras usually come at 30 fps, which is amazing considering its size.

Resolution

Mini Camera resolution comparisonImage resolution simply refers to how many pixels can the camera display on the screen. If you are not familiar with the term pixel, this is the smallest unit of color that can be shown on the screen. The higher the resolution, the sharper the image will be. Most of the spy cameras that we have checked have the capability of high definition (HD) recordings of 1920 X 1080p. This may not be the highest because the resolution, nowadays can reach up to 4K but for a miniature camera this is good enough, and the video will be very detailed.

Motion Detection

This is a necessity for mini spy cameras no matter what is the intended use. The reason why you need the motion detection technology is that you need to save the battery power. Therefore, allowing the camera to be idle when not in use and its ability to turn on when the camera detects motion within its viewing field.

Night Vision

night visionGone are the days when you cannot film anything when it gets dark. Today, night vision capability is a standard feature common among mini cameras. Using infrared lights, the camera can illuminate the field of vision for the camera to pick up the target with more brightness when there is low light.

The good thing about infrared light is they are invisible to the naked eye. To measure how good, the night vision capacity of the mini spy camera is, you need to know the number of infrared lights it has. The general rule is the more the IR lights, the more brightness you will get during low light situations.

Recording Time

This is another must-have for mini spy camera features. The recording time of the device depends on their battery size. Since what we are talking about here is a camera that is about an inch in diameter, don’t expect the battery to run as much as what it would do in a standard video camera. With the help of a micro SD card, it can expand its memory, but it can be overwritten once the memory card is full. Adding to the battery consumption is the night vision capability.

Wi-Fi

wifi mini cameraAlthough this feature is not common for all miniature spy cameras, it is an exciting addition nonetheless and definitely a game changer. With Wi-Fi capability, you can view the videos or live action remotely using an application if there is an internet signal. If you are looking for a mini spy camera for home security, this is a necessity for convenience and real-time transmission of video.

Durability

If you were investing in a gadget, you would want it to last. Spy cameras are pretty tiny and not built for rough situations. However, you can still find some that are more durable than others are. The extra protective casing can help to protect it from the elements. Otherwise, you have to take extra care when they are in use.

Mounting

mounted camWell, spy cameras have a different intended use, so this should be considered on how you would want them mounted for your convenience. Some of these cameras have the magnetic backing to stick to metallic objects, while others come with a clip or a mounting bracket so you can attach them to a surface. Sometimes you mini camera may not come with a mount and you may want to make your own mini camera mount or order it seperately.

Most Common Types

In selecting the best mini camera, you should be able to decide first on its type. The market is already saturated with cameras of all sorts and to make the right choice it should be able to answer your needs. To simplify, if you need a camera to film at night, it should have a night vision capability. If what you want is to secure your home, then the motion-activated option is the best choice. You should also need to know how the camera operates because this too will determine the type of camera you will be looking for. There are the types that save the cam footages in an internal memory card while there are others that send them to other devices. Here is where the likes of Wi-Fi spy camera and USB camera are categorized. To simplify the matter, here are the most common types of small spy camera. This nugget of information can help you a lot to make the right choice.

Motion Activated Camera This is the perfect camera for your home because it can record everything that is happening inside a room. When there is no activity, the cam will be idle which saves its battery life and memory storage.

The sensors will only be activated when there is motion in a room, so you do not have to watch useless materials when reviewing the captured video. There are two types of motion activated mini camera, one is with their internal memory storage, and the other is the one using other device’s memory storage. For a camera with SD card, it records the footages in the card, therefore; you do not need big memory capacity. For cameras with motion sensors, they do not need much memory for it will only record when there is somebody in the room it monitors.

WiFi Mini Camera Wireless hidden cams connect to other devices, and you can set the alarm to alert you every time the camera detects movement. There is also a mini camera that lets you live to stream the video to your smartphone or PC.

USB Mini Camera The USB Spy cameras are equipped with an SD card as one of its integral parts and therefore can store footages. The memory cards also require small so expect these type of mini cameras not to be the tiniest in the pack. Instead, they are usually hidden inside other devices, so the size does not matter. These spy cameras have other features like providing HD footages and night vision.

Peephole Camera These cameras come built into your doors peephole so when you get a ring or someone is at the door you can see exactly whose there and decided accordingly whether to open the door or pretend your not there. These cameras come in many shapes and sizes some even offer the option to communicate back and forth with the people outside and some allowing you to use your smartphone to answer the door.

Nanny Camera These types of cameras are just like the mini camera and in the literal sense of the word they are mini cameras however they differ in the way that they are implemented. Usually nanny cams come in two options the hidden ones which are not easy to spot and are put within picture frames and other types of home appliances and items and then there are the consensual ones which are larger or more kids friendly letting everyone know your watching.

Button Camera These cameras are more of a spying item than a casual mini camera, they are built extremely small to look like a button and fit within a button to allow you to spy on people and record without anyone finding out. Because of their smaller size sometimes video quality may suffer but more often than not they are just as powerful as regular cameras because they keep the recording technology within a box that is encased separated while the actual lens is usually at the top of a longer wire.

Hidden Camera Clock Now this item is only listed here because of its popularity, it can double as a nanny cam or just a regular cam. It is a hidden camera and makes sure that its primary function looks like that of a clock and not an obvious camera. The recording quality is great on most of these clocks and they are popular because of their ease of use and practicality to put and point in private places, especially popular with those trying to catch a spouse cheating.

Tips for Perfect Positioning 

Now that you have delineated the choices for mini spy camera, the next step is to know how to position it well to capture decent footage. Let us face it is not as easy as you may think. Without familiarity and preparation, you might not have your desired outcome. Here are some tips on how to capture, unobstructed and useful footages using the spy cam.

recording of house Practice Filming – you have to test the camera in the environment in which it will be used. This is the only way to make sure that the footage will come out right. You can address the issue of poor lighting or obstructions like potted plants at this early.

Check the cameras field of view – you have read from each camera has its own viewing angle. Choose wisely because it will determine how much of the room will be captured without moving the camera.

Motion activated cameras extend memory and battery life – Do not disregard the memory and battery life of the camera. It is important for you not to miss anything happening inside the room you have the camera on. If the room for this purpose has long periods of inactivity, it is wise to invest in spy cameras with motion detection technology.

Solve the problem of tricky placement – There are three goals when installing. First, it should be able to capture the faces of the people within the viewing angle. This means that the height should be just right. It should be placed inconspicuously, which means hiding the camera behind an unsuspecting item like the lamp or wall clock. Lastly, make sure that nothing is obstructing the view. When rearranging things to hide the camera, do another practice filming.

Getting the lighting right – place your camera facing away from the natural light because the shadows will ruin the video or photo. Check for glare or the effects of artificial lighting on the video quality before finalizing the camera placement.

Frequently Asked Questions

1.   Is 1080P in Video Important? For video quality, it is important, but it is not a requirement. You can have the standard definition if you want and it will not affect the surveillance quality. One important feature you must always check though is the audio.

2.   Will a cordless phone interfere with a wireless camera? Cordless phones that have the same frequency as your wireless spy camera can cause minor interruption. This happens if the phone is between the camera and the receiver.

3.   Are hidden cameras illegal? It is not illegal as long as the intention of the video or audio is not to harm others. In the US, it is illegal to capture audio recordings. Always bear this in mind.

4.   Can I install hidden cameras in an air vent? It depends on the ability of the spy camera to withstand extreme temperatures. Most hidden cameras do not allow it, but there is some high quality that can be. Always check the manual before installation.

4.   Are there universal instructions for mini cameras? Mini Camera come in many shapes and sizes there are so many types its hard to get universal instructions though there are many commonalities between different models. We have a good instructions summary article with multiple links to instructions manuals that can be seen here for more.

5.   Do regular mini cameras fit on cars as a dash cam? Dash cams for cars are usually made slightly different with features such as car on recording and auto overwrite after your gb allotment is covered as well as car suction cups or ways to mount. If you want to see a list of great mini cameras for cars check out our guide.

Closing words

A mini camera can be the best option if you want to keep an eye on your loved ones and your property. All the mini cameras mentioned have different features, each serving a different purpose. It is an excellent investment to protect yourself and your family. Give it a try. If your looking for a more general guide on the best spy cameras around please visit our best spy camera guide at this link.

1. SS Waterproof Wireless Camera

Affordable and super small, Waterproof

A miniature yet super powerful Spy Camera, this is the smallest in the world at 0.87 inches and weighs 0.7 ounces.

It can be used as a nanny cam, on a drone or for home security. It can record videos unnoticeably using motion detection on, and has incredible battery life.