The Fuvision Pinhole Video Recording Spy Pen 3 is our best spy pen which has a sleek design that lets you legibly use it for writing at the office or in school. With its 2 megapixels camera, you can get the best kind of quality for images and videos. It is also compatible with most smart TVs due to the USB connection feature.
Our step-up pick is the GSmade 2K HD Spy Pen Camera and the unit is rechargeable so you can easily charge it when the time comes. With high definition video and photos so you only get clear and precise recorded video or picture from your pen, it take photos in the best way possible with a one function button, which makes it simple and straightforward to use.
The budget pick is the Funshare Full HD 1080p Spy Pen and with a frame rate of 30 fps, it has a decent quality and gives you multiple functions as a spy pen. It has a sleek design for a pen and it is easy to carry so you can write with it and record videos with it as well. The device supports up to 32 GB of SD card so you can record more videos and photos on the go.
A Little Background
Spy pens have a lot of uses because they look like regular pens but they can be used for surveillance without people knowing. However, like most high tech devices today, the spy pen can also be used for unlawful purposes, such as invading someone’s privacy by recording sensual or private footage as well as piracy in the cinema. For this reason, most law enforcers also check if civilians carry a spy pen before going to the cinema.
Most spy pens are so easy to record videos with. You can also take pictures of anything with just the push of the button using a spy pen. This is because a spy pen is like a mini camera that lets you record anything without being too obvious like flashing your phone or digital camera around. It also makes the person in front of you comfortable and not intrigued.
Spy pens can record audio, which is a super convenient way to take down notes for students as well as for employees who are on a seminar or a firm meeting. Spy pens are great for those who find it hard to write everything legibly yet want to use the lecture for reviewing purposes, much like listening to a podcast. Usually, the spy pen will have an LED indicator to tell you what mode it has, so you can freely choose to either record videos or to simply record audio or just take pictures.
Spy pens can be useful for recording sexual harassment, child abuse, money swapping schemes, swindling, drug buy-bust operations, traffic and street trouble and many more. While most courts do not qualify video and audio recordings as primary evidence, they can still be a great way to supplement and strengthen your filed case in the court.
Most spy pens can be operated by twisting the pen or pressing some discreet buttons. There also newer technologies, such as motion detection, which is also a way to save up on storage so that you don’t have to record events that don’t have action going on, much like in a CCTV camera.
How We Picked
The best spy pen for you should be filled with a lot of good points, such as the following:
Internal memory size: most spy pens can have from 2 GB to 8 GB of internal memory. A spy pen with a good amount of internal memory is important because it will be the base starting point or a backup should your SD card run out of memory, and it is also necessary to maintain the system of the spy pen.
Accepted SD card size: most spy pens can take up to 32 GB of SD card size. Consider a spy pen that allows more sizes of SD card so that you can have the option to upgrade for a better storage, especially if the spy pen has the capability to record videos and images in full HD format, hence with bigger sizes.
Video resolution: some spy pens can take up to 1080p resolution or full HD, so you can get the clearest details possible. Some may also have a decent 720p resolution, which is also in HD or high definition. Having a spy pen that has a good resolution and optical clarity means that you can use it to point out the smallest evidence possible in a footage for analysis and for court cases.
Intended use: consider where you will want to use the spy pen. For instance, some people will want to use their spy pen for taking recordings from a meeting or a lecture at school so that they can review it for their report or for their homework. Spy pens can also be used by law enforcement agencies to track down wrongdoers. You can also use the spy pen for making documentaries if you choose one that can take full HD videos. Most reporters also often use a spy pen due to their work nature.
Image resolution: most spy pens can take up to 2000+ pixels in terms of its image resolution, which is like in most smartphones nowadays. Do consider a spy pen that has a good image size so that it will be able to point out the details as much as possible, unlike low resolution spy pen cameras.
File formats: most spy pens save audio in WAV format, images in JPG or JPEG format and videos in AVI format. These file formats should be set in a standard or encoding / compression that can be read by most operating systems and devices, for you to easily play the media that you want. This is because some AVI compression systems are not supported on older computers.
Ease of operation: the spy pen must be easy to operate and must have a user’s manual that is clear and concise. Most spy pens can be turned on with a small and simple switch or can be twisted to activate it, depending on the user instructions. Some will also use motion detection for automatic recording.
Image quality: consider a spy pen with a higher megapixel, with the highest up to 20 megapixels, similar to most smartphones today. Better quality means that you can pinpoint the finest details from any picture taken by a spy pen in secret, such as people who are far away or car plate numbers.
Pen ink: since spy pens are also functional pens, if you find one that has free ink refills then that’s really convenient. Remember that a spy pen is also a double purpose surveillance tool so having one that really works as a pen and writes legibly is a good buy for you.
FPS: having higher FPS such as up to 60 fps means that it will be able to record realistic shots of your surveillance video, covering the tiniest of actions. Like most movies and video games today that show at up to 60 fps, having a good frame rate means that the footage you’ve just recorded is quite true-to-life.
Covert design: you have to make sure that the spy pen won’t be given away as a spy pen by having no overly blinking lights that will blow up your cover. While most cheap spy pens will have blinking lights, make sure that they aren’t too obvious and you can also set them to low light mode.
Battery life: consider a spy pen that has a good battery life of about 1 to 2 hours on the average or more. Having a good battery life for a spy pen ensures that you can record more videos, photos and audio for your purpose or needs. Having a good charge time is also important for any spy pen.
Fuvision Pinhole Video Recording Spy Pen
Our best spy pen would be the Fuvision Pinhole Video Recording Spy Pen which records videos in the best high definition possible and it saves to AVI video files so you can play it on almost any kind of device today that supports AVI video files, such as old Windows and Mac PCs and others.
You also get a total of 70 minutes of recording with this reliable spy pen as it gives you a full 1280 x 720 video resolution with no up scaling. It also automatically does date and time stamping so you know when the video took place. As a hidden camera, the spy pen is easy to charge using the USB 2.0 port and is also easy to transfer data from its memory or SD card.
Like most gadgets, the spy pen can work well executive ball point pen so you can feel like James Bond with a dual purpose pen. It saves photos in JPEG format at 2560 x 1920 resolution and it has a good frame rate at 30 FPS so you get only the best photos and videos to record evidences from.
With continuous video recording so you don’t have to stop and re-activate the spy pen to make new recordings, it gives you hands-free operation. With no flashing lights, you are not distracted and the spy pen’s presence is not given away for stealth purposes.
There is a 16 GB micro SD card included with this spy pen to get you started on recording a lot of videos in just one go. You also get up to 15 square meters of voice recording coverage capability so you can record conversations as far as possible with this audio and video webcam pen.
You also get a total of three ink refills included for the pen. It writes nicely and it is also well-polished. It supports up to 32 GB of SD card and the time and date can be setup. The spy pen also comes with a reset pin. It is backed by a 1 year warranty.
Flaws but Not Dealbrakers
While not really deal breakers, the Fuvision Pinhole Video Recording Spy Pen does have a few cons such as the fact that it doesn’t have motion detection recording, but that is an expensive feature and is mostly found on higher-priced spy pens anyway.
GSmade 2K HD Spy Pen Camera
The GSmade 2K HD Spy Pen Camera is easy to operate and is our step-up pick, which will work well even in low light conditions due to its conditional camera settings. The spy pen comes with both a camera and microphone system to record your preferred events or encounters or catching any kind of illegal activity.
Having a good spy pen with HD quality is important if you want to use evidence for the court and pinpoint details such as other people in the background, similar to a CCTV footage. You get a lot of advantages from an HD quality spy pen video.
With a 2304 x 1296 resolution for images, the spy pen can support up to 32 GB of memory. Whether you are at home or at work, it is a working spy pen that can take up to 30 fps of videos at 20 megapixels for both images and video quality. It is also a legible everyday writing pen that you can use with 2 ink refills.
As a very clear spy pen and writing pen all in one go, there are also removable clips so you can customize the pen body to your needs. The spy pen can record anything up to 90 minutes due to its good battery life. It also comes with a pen holder for your needs.
It is a very discreet spy pen to use for recording videos due to its design and will work well for most Windows PCs and Mac computers. The clip lens is hidden so it is very hard to distinguish as a spy pen. It has a hard to detect camera lens so its stealth is good overall.
The spy pen can also be changed to 720P at 60 fps so you get good video quality at a low sized file. The crystal clear images will definitely make it easier for you to pinpoint details along with the dynamic shot feature. It charges using a USB cable and also transfers files and is backed by a 1 year warranty for repair.
Funshare Full HD 1080p Spy Pen
The Funshare Full HD 1080p Spy Pen is our budget pick which can record a full 1920 x 1080 HD video for the best kind of quality for a cheaper price. It has a non-slip design so it will not easily be lost when you are running in the streets catching a criminal, especially for police work or for TV reporters.
This spy pen is a convenient must-have for covert operations, such as for drug syndicate surveillance, buy-bust operations, recording evidence of harassment from your boss or employer and many more. The pen is a good secret way to record more videos and photos for your intended use (legally).
As a spy pen camera made for both audio and video recording needs, the spy pen can take up to 1 hour of video recording time due to its good battery life. It is made for different activities that require a hidden camera to be used. It is also good at data transferring via USB.
You can use it for elderly care and patient monitoring without making them feel uncomfortable. With an included USB cable to transfer files and to charge it, you get clear recordings and concise conversations. You can also use the spy pen as a pet monitor.
It saves videos in the traditional AVI format. The small size makes it super easy to make travel records at the comfort of your shirt pocket or collar. What’s more, the USB connection is so simple to operate. It also works great at night as a good spy pen.
You can use the spy pen for conference or lecture records to understand what was discussed. With Windows and Mac support, it is made out of tough metal material and it has a easy USB battery charging method (rechargeable Lithium battery). The spy pen is backed by a 1 year return replacement warranty.
Best Spy Pen for Voice Recording
PenRecorderPro VA30 Voice Activated Recorder Pen
The PenRecorderPro VA30 Voice Activated Recorder Pen is our ideal spy pen that can record voices and audio conversations, which is good for lectures and meetings. The continuous recording mode allows you to use the spy pen for as long as you want and as you can for longer recording times.
It has up to 8 GB of internal memory without the SD card so you can easily record videos and media off the bat. You can also play back your files using the USB port to your PC with no hassle at all. The spy pen has approximately 30 days (voice activation) and 19 hours (continuous recording) of battery life.
With this spy pen, no one will easily know that it is recording due to the lack of blinking lights or anything that is too flashy. It also features voice activation so it will start recording immediately, much like spy pen that has motion detection so you can save time having to press the buttons to start it.
You can count on the spy pen for making audio recordings for your lecture, business meeting, confrontation with your boss, etc. It also has a concealed twist switch for you to easily turn it on manually and it also has an automatic sensitivity control for the microphone for an even audio level.
If you are looking for a quality pen in terms of style then you can also count on the spy pen due to the sleek design and the legible writing capability. With a USB connector for data transfer, the spy pen is also very stealthy due to its design. You can find it easy to start and stop recording with this pen.
With a time and date stamp option so you know when the spy pen has recorded anything, you also get a clear 128 kbps audio recording bit rate so you can hear audio without the garbled noise unlike in most phone recorders. The spy pen renders and saves recordings in high quality mp3 audio format.
The spy pen is equipped with a high powered microphone for your audio recording needs and comes with 3 ink cartridges. Being compatible with Mac and Windows with no extra software needed, the spy pen picks up anything audible within 20 feet and you also get optimal recording volume even in a large room with a lot of noise.
Best Spy Pen with Free Ink Refills
WNAT 1080P Spy Ball Point Pen
The WNAT 1080P Spy Ball Point Pen is a great high definition camera that is coupled with a bunch of ink refills so you can use the pen for writing and taking down notes with a peace of mind. You can also maximize your recording due to the decent battery life of up to 70 minutes of videos.
The spy pen is a good companion for law enforcement and it is also more than an ordinary pen. Holding up to 32 GB of data for your videos, photos and audio, this hidden camera pen has an SD card reader that allows you to put any kind of SD card into it.
As a spy pen, it is also good for writing notes. Having a double purpose spy pen as a camera recorder and a writing tool at the same time is a sign that it is good for a lot of intended activities and especially for lectures, seminars, business meetings and school use.
Giving you an AVI video format for videos, the spy pen can record up to 1920 x 1080 of video resolution and can easily save your videos and photos yet has a nice weight as a regular writing pen. The lithium battery at 200 mAh capacity makes it a lasting spy pen for you to use for longer recording times.
A good device to make a complete evidence of any event, the spy pen works well Windows and Mac and it saves images in JPG image format for easy viewing. It is great for use on outdoor activities such as camping and can also take videos up to 30 FPS for better quality and more detailed actions.
The pen writes well and records up to 2560 x 1440 photo resolution. You can also feel free to set any time or date for this spy pen for your needs. It is great at recording videos and it comes with a total of 5 ink refills so you can use the pen for a long time. It also comes with concealed lens so it’s very stealthy.
Best Spy Pen with a Free SD Card
iSmartPen Plus 16GB Gold DVR Pen
The iSmartPen Plus 16GB Gold DVR Pen is a great investment for business professionals due to its spying capabilities for video taking as well as for personal memos during a meeting or a school lecture. Giving you a crisp video footage even from a small package, it is great for personal documentation as well.
Recording videos at up to 30 frames per second, it is also a decent ballpoint pen for writing notes and the like. You can capture videos and photos as well as record notes in just one extremely stealthy device. With a 1.2 MP camera, the video quality is great as well as for taking photos and recording audio.
Great for educational purposes, the spy pen has an average of continuous recording time of 30 to 40 minutes so you can record more videos on the go. It is also fully automatic so your target will not know that you are using a spy pen. It is also applicable for professional purposes such as for offices.
Most students and office professionals can definitely benefit from the 1280 x 960 resolution of this spy pen. It is also easy to hide and easy to use due to the design and size. It even includes a free SanDisk Ultra Micro SD Memory Card at 16 GB for a ready to use spy pen from the package.
Whether it is take notes during meetings or recording videos, photos and audio recordings, the smoothness of the video will definitely be a good factor. It also has no flashing indicator light so it will not be obvious to whoever you are capturing.
The spy pen also has a rechargeable lithium battery for longer battery life. In addition to the easy to follow directions, the spy pen is not just a camcorder or DVR pen but it also works like a regular pen. It is also quite easy to upload to the computer due to the USB port.
You can also start recording instantly due to the simple instructions and included SD card. You can also easily remember what was discussed in class or in a meeting with the use of this spy pen.
Best Spy Pen for Video Recording
Brookstone 720p HD Video Camera Pen
Measuring 1280 x 720 pixels, the Brookstone 720p HD Video Camera Pen is a great spy pen for video recording purposes. If you want to recover the important details of a meeting, most events, a lecture in class or any kind of seminar, this is a good spy pen to consider with its clear audio recording capabilities.
This spy pen is also at 1.0 megapixel so it is fairly good for capturing videos from any event. You can definitely use it for your next lecture or business meeting. It also has a rechargeable battery that is simple to operate and to charge. Equipped with an HD camera, it is super easy to use.
Giving you a full color video with just a small scale pen, it is sufficient for business meetings for remembering your agenda. It is a portable device that you can transfer your files directly on your computer using the USB port. It also produces videos with sound for storing memories.
It takes photos clearly and it has up to 60 minutes of battery life for a good spy pen. It is significantly better than most mobile devices and can allow you to play back videos on any computer. An 8 GB memory card is included so you can store more videos and view photos easily with DVD quality.
You can use the spy pen for recording lectures and you can save the videos later on through the USB connection, which can also be used for charging the device.
Best Spy Pen for Office Use
DREAM HO DV Camera Pen Recorder
The DREAM HO DV Camera Pen Recorder is a great spy pen to use at the office, holding up to 500 MB of videos and 200 KB of photos. It saves videos in 1280 x 960 AVI format and it has a hidden camera design that is clear and bright – great for general audio and video recording.
With 3 to 4 hours of operation, this pen camcorder is also stylish looking that it won’t give away being a spy pen. Its subtle LED indicator informs you of its mode and it also allows continuous recording so it is a convenient recorder to have and a black ballpoint pen as well.
The spy pen can take up to 32 GB in its max micro SD card capacity. Its built-in microphone gives you cleared audio as a pinhole video camera system. Producing HD video, it gives you easy data transfer with no blinking on the unit so it’s not flashy.
The spy pen uses a rechargeable lithium battery so it lasts very long. It saves in JPG format up to 1280 x 960. Due to the discreet design, nobody will notice that you’re using a spy pen. You can also record and charge simultaneously for convenience.
It saves media with a date and time stamp and supports Windows on almost any version. Giving you an average of 60 minutes of battery life, it is an easy one button operation spy pen for most people who want to record anything.
Best Spy Pen with 720p Resolution
UYIKOO 1280x720P Camera Pen Video Recorder
The UYIKOO 1280x720P Camera Pen Video Recorder is a 720P camera pen that allows you to record a conversation while it writes like a regular pen. Its 1280 x 720 resolution and included 8 GB SD card makes it a perfect spy pen for Windows and Mac and video surveillance.
You can use it in the office to catch people doing things or to record conversations. This pen cam handles both video and audio files just fine in a meeting. It is a discreet pinhole camera and a digital video recorder in just one device.
As a camera pen, you can use it for whatever reason (legally) and it can also be a file storage. As a portable webcam, it’s also a great travel companion or if you just want to record a conversation.
Best Spy Pen for Students
TOTO 2GB Card + Camera Pen
For students, there’s the TOTO 2GB Card + Camera Pen for your needs of a good video compression. Great for monitoring and capturing events or lectures, it gives you up to 100 minutes of recording. Moreover, the sleek silver parts make it great for office or student use.
Saving in AVI video format, the spy pen is simple to operate and it already comes with a 2 GB SD card. Ideal for most school projects, the 1280 x 960 video resolution makes it an HD camera that supports up to 30 FPS. Moreover, the JPG image format at up to 3840 x 2880.
As a DVR spy pen, it uses USB 2.0 and supports SD cards up to 16 GB. You can have digital video recorded media with this spy pen with a professional and elegant design. As an HD video resolution spy pen, it is very much compatible with most Windows versions so it is very much versatile.
It is also a user friendly and reliable pen for your needs and the included USB cable makes it easy to transfer files to and from your computer or device or to set the time and date. With up to 3 megapixels in its camera, it has a rechargeable lithium battery. As a cool gadget, it charges via USB port.
Other spy pens that did not make it to our list were reported to have faulty parts, bad charging issues and difficulty in operating them. It is highly important that a spy pen is easy to operate and yet will not give away the cover of being a surveillance camera at all whilst you are recording or saving anything.
Other Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What exactly are spy pens?
A: A spy pen is a unique device that is used to secretly or discreetly take pictures of someone or record a conversation or video of an action that you think is unjust or suspicious. Spy pens can be used in police work when you want to entrap someone, such as in a buy-bust operation for drug dealers. Employees can also use it to capture unruly actions of their boss and customers can also use it as evidence for court cases against a company.
Q: What types of media or evidence can you record using a spy pen?
A: Typically, a spy pen is used to record videos of someone or even record an audio conversation of someone. However, there may be rules in your company, establishment, community, state, town or city that doesn’t allow such recordings depending on the case, so you should know those first.
Q: Aside from police work and surveilance, what else are the uses of a spy pen?
A: The practical use of a spy pen for commoners is the way it can record lectures, especially for business employees, students or anyone who wants to remember everything said in a lecture but don’t want to keep writing notes all the time.
Q: How do you usually record videos from a spy pen?
A: Look for the switch on the pen that enables the video recording mode, as per instruction in the manual included in the item. Most spy pens come with different mechanisms of turning on the recording function of the unit, such as twisting the pen to the left or to the right to enter a specific recording mode.
Q: How can a spy pen be used to stop crime and unjust behavior?
A: The use of a spy pen can extend to a lot of areas, especially on surveillance of people whom you believe or think is making a bad move. Anyone you think is doing something illegal or for the sake of chance events or news happening can make a spy pen very useful.
Q: How is a spy pen different from a tactical pen?
A: The spy pen usually has a purpose of only recording audio, video and pictures while a tactical pen is used like a Swiss army knife that can be used as a multi-tool to survive during camping, hiking or for self-defense.
Tactical pens are more for preventing yourself from getting attacked or for preparing food and wood while out in the forest. Most tactical pens can also break glass. It is good to have both a tactical pen and a spy pen if you’re really thinking about personal safety.
Q: Where does a spy pen save its recorded media?
A: The typical spy pen uses micro SD cards, much like phones nowadays, to record and save your videos, photos and audio recordings. Most SD cards it can support are from 2 GB up to 16 GB so you can have a ton of time and space for you to save more media in the process. Most of these micro SD card slots are placed near the pen’s clip so it is not too obvious for people. However, in some cases, some spy pens have an internal memory, so you can also make good use of that.
Q: How do I charge a spy pen when it’s battery runs out?
A: The typical way to charge a spy pen is through a USB charger, which connects it to a computer, a power bank or any source of power with a USB port. Most spy pens can take from 3 to 4 hours of charging in order to fully function.
Q: What format does a spy pen usually save into?
A: The usual format of videos when saving to your SD card or internal memory is in AVI format, but some may also record in mp4 or some other video format that is commonly found on most electronic devices nowadays. AVI is a good universal format which can be played even on old computers, such as those with Windows XP and the like.
Q: How long can a single charge of a battery of the spy pen last?
A: That depends on the pen model and the company, but if you are running on a lithium ion powered spy pen then recharging it can last for 2 to 4 hours depending on how much you have used it. Contrary to popular belief, whether you record videos, record audio or take pictures, battery life consumption will remain the same for most spy pens out there.
Q: How does a spy pen handle big video files when you save them?
A: Usually, a spy pen has the method of splitting apart video files after a certain point in time, such as every 10 minutes or 30 minutes. This helps you to have files saved automatically even if the device runs out of battery. In addition, you also do not have to manually stop the spy pen while you are recording so that it doesn’t get awkward with the other person.
Q: Does a spy pen have motion detection?
A: Yes, some unique spy pens do have motion detection, which helps you save time and effort in having to turn the spy pen on and off when it comes to recording. This is also helpful if you don’t want to give away that you have a spy pen to the other person.
Q: Can a spy pen record in high quality audio with fast frame rates?
A: Yes, some high end spy pens do have the capability to record up to 60 frames per second, while some spy pens are usually at 30 frames per second. Having a 60 fps video recording device is important for making documentaries, films and the like, so you can feel the action realistically as if you were there. You can also get more details of the event with a spy pen like that.
Q: How much internal memory can a spy pen have?
A: The usual internal memory of a spy pen is somewhere from 1 to 4 GB, which is pretty sufficient to keep a lot of videos in it. Having a good internal memory, aside from the expandable SD card slot, is important so that you can have more recording space and delete less often.
Q: How do you set the timestamp or time and date in a spy pen?
A: It usually involves a text file , which you have to look for in the spy pen’s internal memory, usually labeled with names such as “userconfig.txt” or “setdatetime.txt” for you to configure manually. They usually come with a familiar format, such as 2017.7.11 22:55:50 and then replace it with the corresponding details of your current date or time.
Q: How do you prevent losing data from your spy pen?
A: You can backup your data to various devices, such as your computer (desktop, laptop or notebook), tablet, smartphone, external hard drive, internal disk drive, personal cloud, network attached storage, e-mail attachment and so much more. You should also avoid using the spy pen when you see its battery is almost empty, so your recording won’t go into waste.
Q: What formats do a spy pen use for recording photos and audio?
A: The usual and common formats that are found from a spy pen for audio recording would be the WAV file format and JPG format for taking photos, much like in most smartphones today.
Q: Are spy pens legal in all countries?
A: The legality of spy pens vary depending on where you are. Some countries can have laws regarding where and when it is legal and illegal to use a spy pen or spy camera on someone, which usually involves privacy issues. Of course, specific areas of public establishments like restrooms or anywhere a person takes off their clothes are definitely not for surveillance recording.
Q: Can spy pens be used to pirate movies?
A: Yes, most spy pens become popular in places that usually have a ton of piracy problems. Pirating movies is a lot easier in the cinema if you have a spy pen because guards won’t really check you if they only see a simple pen. This is why piracy can’t easily die out in the industry.
Q: Can spy pens be used to solve harassment problems in the office?
A: Most spy pens are widely used by employers, employees as well as clients to monitor the actions of someone whom they think is a bad player on the team or a really mean boss to them.
Wrapping It Up
To wrap it up, the Fuvision Pinhole Video Recording Spy Pen 3 is our best spy pen with 720p resolution, 30 fps recording and included 16 GB SD card.