Everyone wants to secure their business, home, or any other valuable area.

Nothing can beat security cameras when securing your precious assets because they can significantly impede criminals from targeting your beneficial properties, either home or business.

If you’ve decided to buy security cameras, the next step is choosing the type of camera. There are two popular types: bullet cameras and dome cameras.

dome vs bullet cams

This article will discuss the key differences, pros and cons, and top features of dome and bullet cameras.

Let’s get started.

What Is A Bullet Camera?

The distinct cylindrical shape of a bullet camera is similar to a bullet or lipstick tube, hence their name.

bullet camera outside office building

Bullet camera models are the most common type of camera, with a lens at one end and the main body at the other. They are well-suited for both outdoor and indoor use.

The incredible thing about a bullet camera is their extended range, ideal for covering larger areas like parking lots.

Bullet cameras are easy to install and perfect for outdoor use. A small lip on the tip of the bullet camera protects it from glare.

The key benefits of a bullet camera include:

  • Easy installation
  • Longer range
  • Weatherproof
  • Night vision
  • Indoor and outdoor

What Is A Dome Camera?

Dome cameras get their name from their circular or half-sphere shape. The lens of a dome camera is recessed inside the dome.

Dome cameras are best suited for both outdoor and indoor use. Businesses like hotels, restaurants, and retail stores use dome cameras due to their discreet design.

dome cams

Due to its shape, it’s not easy to figure out which direction the dome camera is pointing, which can help in areas with a high chance of suspicious activities.

Also, the shape allows dome cameras to monitor wider angles as the camera lens moves.

The top benefits of a dome camera include:

  • Easily blends with surroundings
  • Vandal resistant
  • Night vision
  • Weatherproof
  • Rotates and covers a wide angle

Dome Vs Bullet For Your System Needs

There are several differences between dome and bullet cameras. Some are technical, while others aren’t.

However, you should consider all factors when choosing a camera for security purposes.

1. Appearance

The most apparent difference between dome and bullet cameras is their shape. As mentioned earlier, bullet cameras have a cylindrical shape like a lipstick tube.

Bullet security cameras are more noticeable, so owners usually install them where they want the maximum deterrent effect.

In contrast, the dome shape is round. They are less noticeable, so they are usually installed in areas where the owner wants the camera housing to blend with its surroundings.

2. Resolution

Gone are the days when you had to worry about low-resolution cameras capturing grainy videos. Cameras have evolved, and you can now get them in numerous designs that capture video thats very high quality.

Both bullet and dome cameras can record in 720p, 1080p, and sometimes even 4k resolution. While higher resolution videos like 4k or 1080p sound more attractive, 720p is often sufficient for home security cameras.

Keep in mind that higher resolution videos will take up more storage space. Higher resolution cameras also typically come with higher price tags.

3. Installation

Dome cameras can usually be installed both indoors and outdoors. You can hang them on ceilings or mount them on walls. They are less visible but more challenging to install compared to bullet cameras.

With dome cameras, you need to find a suitable place to mount them for optimal coverage of the desired monitoring area. Bullet cameras, on the other hand, can be more easily repositioned after installation.

Bullet cameras are pretty easy to install because of their built-in mounting handle. Once you’ve installed a bullet camera, you can easily change its position and lens to monitor your desired area.

4. Camera Range

When choosing a security cam, consider how far it can see. A camera with a longer range will generally be more beneficial. However, if you only need to cover a limited area like a home or small business, an extended range may not be necessary.

Several factors influence camera range, including lens type, resolution, wide dynamic range, sensor size, and backlight compensation.

It depends on the specific camera model. In general, bullet cameras have larger lenses. So if you need a camera to cover a large area, a bullet camera is often the better option.

5. Light Conditions

When purchasing a camera for security, light conditions are a primary concern for every buyer.

The good news is that both bullet and dome cameras typically have infrared LEDs that ensure adequate performance even in low-light conditions.

6. Adjustments

The ease of adjusting a camera’s view is another important consideration. As mentioned earlier, bullet cameras are easier to reposition to change the field of view thanks to their mounting handle.

Dome cameras, being mounted on walls or ceilings, need to be taken down to adjust the lens and change the monitored area.

Bullet Vs Dome Camera: Which Is Right For Your Security System?

When it comes to choosing between bullet security cameras vs dome security cameras, there are several factors to consider.

bullet and dome cameras

Both camera types have their pros and cons, and the right choice for you will depend on your specific security needs.

Bullet cameras tend to be more visible, acting as a deterrent to potential intruders. They also typically have larger lenses and longer ranges, making them well-suited for covering expansive outdoor areas like parking lots. Bullet style cameras are generally easier to install and adjust thanks to their mounting arm.

On the other hand, dome cameras are more discreet and blend in better with surroundings. This makes them a good choice for indoor areas where aesthetics are important.

Many dome cameras also offer a wider viewing angle and the ability to pan, tilt, and zoom for more comprehensive coverage.

Ultimately, the best security camera systems often incorporate both of these cameras to leverage the strengths of each camera type.

By strategically placing bullet cameras to cover outdoor areas and entry points, and using dome cameras for indoor surveillance, you can create a robust and effective security system.

Factors To Consider When Choosing Between A Bullet Vs Dome Camera

When evaluating a bullet camera vs a dome camera for your security needs, keep these key factors in mind:

  1. Location: Bullet cameras are often better for outdoor use, while dome cctv cameras excel in indoor environments.
  2. Visibility: If you want a visible deterrent, bullet cameras are the way to go. For more discreet surveillance, choose a dome camera.
  3. Coverage Area: Bullet cameras typically have longer ranges and narrower fields of view, while domes offer wider viewing angles but shorter ranges.
  4. Installation: Bullet cameras are generally easier to install and adjust, while dome cameras can be more challenging to set up and may require professional installation.
  5. Aesthetics: Dome cameras have a sleeker, more unobtrusive design compared to bullet cameras.
  6. Budget: Prices for both cameras can vary based on features like resolution, night vision capabilities, and weather resistance. Determine your budget and choose accordingly.

By carefully considering these factors and your unique security requirements, you can select the right mix of both cameras to keep your property safe and secure.

Choosing the Right Security Camera: Dome Vs Bullet Camera

When it comes to selecting the best security camera system for your needs, one of the most important decisions you’ll face is whether to choose bullet cameras or dome cameras.

Both camera types have their strengths and weaknesses, and understanding the key differences between both cameras can help you make an informed decision.

Bullet Cameras: Visible Deterrence and Long-Range Capabilities

Bullet cameras are named for their distinctive cylindrical shape, which resembles a bullet or lipstick tube.

These cameras are typically mounted on walls or ceilings and are highly visible, making them an excellent deterrent against potential intruders.

Bullet cameras tend to have a longer range and larger lenses, allowing them to capture detailed images from a distance. They are also generally easier to install and adjust thanks to their mounting arm.

Dome Cameras: Discreet Monitoring and Wide Viewing Angles

On the other hand, dome cameras are characterized by their dome-shaped housing, which gives them a more discreet appearance.

These cameras are often used in indoor areas where a sleek, unobtrusive design is preferred. Dome cameras typically offer a wider viewing angle than bullet cameras, making them well-suited for monitoring larger areas.

Many of these cameras also feature pan, tilt, and zoom (PTZ) capabilities, allowing them to cover a wider area and capture more details.

Factors to Consider When Comparing Dome And Bullet Cameras

When comparing a bullet vs dome camera, it’s essential to consider factors such as the camera’s intended location, desired visibility, and coverage requirements.

Bullet cameras are often the better choice for outdoor installations, particularly in areas where a visible security presence is desired, such as parking lots or building entrances.

Dome cameras, with their more discreet design, are ideal for indoor settings such as retail stores, office buildings, and hotels.

Another factor to consider when choosing between these cameras is their ability to perform in low light conditions.

Both camera types typically feature infrared LEDs that allow them to capture clear video footage even in the dark.

However, the effectiveness of a camera’s night vision capabilities can vary based on factors such as the number and quality of the LEDs, the camera’s resolution, and the lens size.

In terms of installation, bullet cameras are generally easier to set up and adjust than dome cameras.

Bullet cameras often come with a mounting arm that allows for easy positioning and angle adjustment.

Dome cameras, on the other hand, may require more effort to install and typically need to be mounted on a ceiling or wall. Some dome camera models may also require professional installation to ensure optimal performance.

Creating a Comprehensive Security Solution

Ultimately, the best system for your needs will likely include a combination of both bullet and dome cameras.

By strategically placing bullet cameras in high-visibility outdoor areas and using a dome security camera for more discreet indoor monitoring, you can create a comprehensive security solution that leverages the strengths of each camera type.

When selecting cameras, be sure to consider factors such as image quality, video storage options, and compatibility with your existing security system.

It’s also essential to choose cameras that are appropriate for your specific environment, taking into account factors such as weather resistance, vandal-proofing, and the potential for IR bounce in enclosed spaces.

By carefully evaluating your security needs and understanding the key differences between bullet vs dome cameras, you can design a system that provides optimal protection for your home or business.

Whether you opt for the visible deterrence of bullet cameras, the discreet monitoring capabilities of dome cameras, or a combination of both, investing in a high-quality system can provide peace of mind and help keep your property safe and secure.

Bullet Cameras And Dome Cameras Both Have Their Place In Effective Security Systems

In the bullet camera vs dome camera debate, there is no clear winner. Both camera types have distinct advantages that make them better suited for different applications.

Bullet cameras are an excellent choice for long-range outdoor surveillance, especially in applications where a visible security presence is desired.

Dome cameras, with their wide viewing angles and inconspicuous design, are ideal for indoor settings and situations that call for more discreet monitoring.

For most comprehensive protection, the best approach is to use a combination of bullet and dome security cameras, leveraging the strengths of each camera type to create a complete and effective surveillance system.

By carefully considering factors like location, desired visibility, coverage requirements, and budget, you can design a security camera system that meets your specific needs and provides optimal protection for your home or business.


Which One Should You Choose?

Considering the pros and cons, the choice between a bullet camera vs dome camera comes down to your specific needs.

Bullet cameras are best if you want overt security and to let potential intruders know you have surveillance.

The best security camera systems often use a mix of bullet and dome cameras, allowing you to effectively monitor assets both indoors and outdoors.

Related: How Do I Choose A Business Surveillance System?

Final Thoughts

Understanding the pros and cons of bullet or dome cameras makes it easier to decide which option is right for you. Be sure to choose security cameras that fit your specific purpose and environment.

We hope this article has helped clear up any confusion and enables you to make a more informed decision when selecting a dome security camera or bullet cameras for your security needs.

Joseph Ferdinando is the visionary founder of Building Security Services, a leading security company renowned for its comprehensive security services. With an illustrious career spanning over 40 years in the security industry, Joseph has been instrumental in elevating the standards of security guard services for a broad spectrum of businesses and organizations. As an influential member of the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) in both New York and New Jersey chapters, Joseph has played a pivotal role in shaping industry standards and practices.