Which Davis Weather Station Should I Buy? They’re All Good

Davis Vantage Vue close up shot
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The Weather Station Experts

We don’t make it a secret that we’re big fans of Davis weather stations. They might not be the fanciest home weather stations out there, but they have a proven record of reliability that few other companies can match. Their stations last for decades and measured the highest wind speed recorded by a personal weather station, 199mph!

Davis Instruments sells a cheaper model called the Vantage Vue, and a pro-grade model, the Vantage Pro2. Each model has its own distinct advantages and disadvantages, which we’ll explain below. We’ll also compare specifications, discuss WeatherLink Live (the company’s new connectivity offering), and touch on AirLink, which adds air quality measurements to your weather station setup.

Let’s get started with a few questions we frequently hear from readers.

What is the difference between the Davis Vantage Vue and Vantage Pro 2?

Davis Vantage Pro2 ISS outside
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The most significant differences are the sensor suite. The Vantage Pro2 features a separate wind vane and anemometer (with the option for a sonic anemometer). With the Vantage Vue, all the sensors are in a single housing, called an “integrated sensor suite.” The Vantage Pro2 also offers expandability, although the new AirLink air quality sensor works with either model.

Who should buy the Davis Vantage Vue?

We recommend casual weather observers purchase the Davis Vantage Vue as it is significantly cheaper than the Vantage Pro2. Even in a significantly smaller package, the Vantage Vue is still a very accurate weather station.

Who should buy the Davis Vantage Pro2?

We recommend weather enthusiasts, organizations, and commercial users purchase the Davis Vantage Pro2 over the Vantage Vue. This station’s accuracy is unmatched among consumer weather stations, and the option to add additional sensors is a huge benefit for specialized applications, like agriculture and environmental monitoring.

How do I connect my Davis station to the internet?

Yes, both stations offer optional internet connectivity, but it requires an additional device called WeatherLink Live. Davis offers packages with the WeatherLink Live included, which we recommend. While Alexa is supported, you cannot use your weather station data to control your smart home devices, unlike other weather stations.

Can I connect my Davis Vantage Vue or Vantage Pro2 to Weather Underground?

Yes, you can, as long as you have a WeatherLink Live base station. You’ll connect the station from within WeatherLink’s settings page. First, you’ll want to set up your account on Weather Underground, though. You can do that by clicking here.

What are the advantages of the Davis Vantage Pro2?

The Vantage Pro2’s expandability is its key feature. Among the additional sensors not available to the Vantage Vue are UV and solar radiation sensors. With the Vantage Pro2 here is also an option for a fan aspirated radiation shield for more accurate temperature and humidity readings. The separate wind vane and anemometer improve wind readings (for why see our weather station installation tips).

What are the advantages of the Davis Vantage Vue?

The Vantage Vue’s integrated sensor suite makes it much easier to install and better suited for those that might not have space for a larger setup. And despite its significantly lower price, the station’s sensors are no different than what is found in the Vantage Pro2.

What are some alternatives to Davis Instruments weather stations?

WS-5000 sensor suite
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Davis’ stations are arguably the best personal weather stations on the market, but there are some excellent alternatives. If you’re considering either weather station, we’d recommend also considering the following stations as well from Ambient Weather:

Ambient Weather WS-5000
Ambient Weather WS-2902C

Is there a difference in the accuracy of the Davis Vantage Vue and Vantage Pro2?

According to their spec sheets, no. But where you place your weather station plays a big role in how accurate your readings will be. With the Davis Vantage Pro2, you can place the anemometer in an elevated location while keeping the rest of the sensors near the ground: with the Vantage Vue, you don’t have that option.

How long do Davis weather stations last?

With proper maintenance, getting five years out of your device is easy. However, some Davis stations have been known to last over two decades.

Where are Davis weather stations made?

All Davis stations are designed, manufactured, and tested at the company’s Hayward, California headquarters.

Popular Davis Weather Stations

Below we’ve laid out the specifications for both the Vantage Vue and the Vantage Pro2 below so you can see how they stack up against each other.

Best Mid-Grade Weather Station
Davis Instruments Vantage Vue
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Davis Instruments Vantage Vue
4.5
$495.00$439.66

While the Vantage Vue is showing its age, and its connectivity options limited, it remains the best mid-grade weather station on the market.

Pros:
  • Accuracy is nearly on par with the Vantage Pro 2
  • Extremely reliable
  • Well-constructed and durable
Cons:
  • Internet connectivity is optional, and expensive
  • 5-in-1 sensor isn’t the best for accurate readings
  • No expandability
We may receive a small commission as a result of sales from clicking on links on our site.
01/04/2022 12:04 am GMT
Best Pro-Grade Weather Station
Davis Instruments Vantage Pro2
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Davis Instruments Vantage Pro2
4.5
$715.00

You can't get any better than the Vantage Pro2 when it comes to accuracy in a home weather station. However, you'll pay quite a bit for it.

Pros:
  • Best accuracy of any home weather station
  • Top-notch reliability
  • Durability is impressive
  • Expandability through additional sensors
Cons:
  • Internet connectivity is optional, and expensive
  • 5-in-1 sensor isn’t the best for accurate readings
  • No expandability
We may receive a small commission as a result of sales from clicking on links on our site.
01/04/2022 03:12 am GMT
Davis Instruments Vantage Pro2 Plus
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Davis Instruments Vantage Pro2 Plus
$1,445.00$1,047.30
  • Professional wireless weather station with weather data updates every 2.5 seconds
  • Measures rainfall, wind speed & direction, temperature, humidity, UV and solar radiation
  • 24-hour fan-aspirated radiation shield
  • Includes console
  • WeatherLink Live sold separately
We may receive a small commission as a result of sales from clicking on links on our site.
01/04/2022 12:03 am GMT

WeatherLink Live

WeatherLink Live
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Davis Instruments

The addition of WeatherLink Live seriously upgrades the connectivity options for both the Vantage Vue and the Vantage Pro2. Previously, you had to purchase an expensive (and outdated) ethernet dongle to connect your station to the Internet.

While real smart home connectivity other than an Alexa app is still missing, WeatherLink Live makes more sense. It appears that the newer sensors that Davis is releasing are built to be compatible with the WeatherLink Live directly, so options may grow with time on what you can do.

We really like the live updating within the app when you’re on the same Wi-Fi network as your WeatherLink Live. It’s a nifty feature, and I’ll admit to watching it intently during some of our stormiest weather.

What’s nice is from what we’ve seen, it isn’t any more expensive than the old dongle, which didn’t have the functionality the WeatherLink Live has. Unfortunately, it’s also not any cheaper.

AirLink

Davis AirLink backyard 5
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Davis Instruments

Davis’ newest device is an air quality monitor known as AirLink. It’s arguably the first of Davis’ “next-generation” weather stations and instruments, as it connects via the new WeatherLink base module. AirLink is one of the few air quality monitors that measure PM1 particulate matter and the more commonly found PM2.5 and PM10.

We found the sensors extremely sensitive in our tests (be careful where you place the AirLink sensor!) and accurate based on our experience for a consumer-grade air quality sensor. If you’re especially sensitive to particulate matter due to allergies or breathing issues, Davis’ AirLink is something you want to consider — especially for the fact it can detect PM1.

Final thoughts

Either Davis weather station is a great choice, but if you can afford it, the Davis Vantage Pro2 is a solid station overall. With best-in-class accuracy and a track record of proven reliability, it’s one of the best weather stations available. But it’s very, very expensive.

We’ve owned a Vantage Vue since 2016 and love it. We’ve had no major mechanical problems with our station, and the accuracy is outstanding as long as you properly maintain it. And we’ve also purchased AirLink and are happy with its performance as well. But our next station is a Vantage Pro2, for sure.

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