Security Cameras – They’re Not All Created Equal
Like many other aspects of Home Automation, there are a lot people who want to sell you a security camera system these days. It could be one of the large monthly contract providers, your cable TV company, an electrician or furnace installer who dabbles in home security or maybe just someone who put a flyer in your mailbox. If you are going to make the right choice of technology and provider, we believe you should be using a company that has made a real commitment to the product and who can integrate security into the whole home system. We also believe it’s important to learn a bit about the technology before you make a decision.
For starters, not all security cameras are created equal. There are two main types:
Analog cameras: Analog cameras are among the most affordable video surveillance solutions there are. They are still available on the market, and for good reason; analog cameras are a cheap solution for those in need of basic video surveillance. They are available in low-light level, high resolution color and other specialty options. The video is recorded and played back with DVR technology. In some cases, it is possible for analog camera owners to set up remote viewing with a smartphone.
IP cameras: Internet-based, also known as IP, cameras are recorded on network video recorders (NVR) or servers. The NVR or server is equipped with video capture cards and special software that power the viewing capability. IP cameras offer the highest resolution quality available. Now more than ever, there are many affordable IP camera solutions available for the average home owner.
Why would you choose one over the other? Here’s some of the reasons:
Many have speculated that the era of analog CCTV (closed-circuit television) cameras is coming to an end. IP cameras have played a major role in phasing out CCTV cameras, as they offer many of the same benefits, yet provide much more. What’s the difference? Plenty! Let’s delve into some of the details and find out how IP cameras tower over their analog CCTV counterparts.
The major benefit of IP cameras is the luxury to view live video via the internet from any location in the world. While CCTV cameras can enable viewing over the internet, they require additional software and hardware components to function properly. An IP camera is integrated with all the necessary tools and doesn’t require any additional installations. Some models are even able to view live video on a cell phone or other mobile device over a cell phone network.
The primary function of a surveillance camera is to monitor a certain area when you are unable to do so. While it serves its purpose for the most part, CCTV cameras are susceptible to security breaches, IP cameras enable recording to remote locations, which virtually eliminates such a scenario. Even if security is breached, the intruder will not be able to steal the tape or recording device because it is physically stationed at a remote location.
Because IP cameras leverage standard IP (Internet Protocol) networks, many of them are available in wireless variations to provide the ultimate in portability. All the device requires is a single cable for a power supply, which results in less work when installing the camera in the recording location.
More IP cameras are being implemented with video analytics to provide advanced tracking and motion detection capability. This technology is so sophisticated that it has the ability to distinguish between the movement of a person, a car driving down the road, or a tree merely swaying in the wind.
More Advancements to Come
CCTV cameras aren’t completely obsolete, but are light-years behind in comparison to IP cameras. IP technology allows individuals and businesses to effectively monitor their home or office premises with little to no security risks. Evolving rapidly, it’s almost certain that you will be able to do much more with an IP camera in the very near future.
Let’s look more closely at why you might want to choose a wireless system.
There are many benefits to investing in a wireless security camera system, along with very few risks. Most significant is the capability of deploying wireless security cameras in areas previously inaccessible due to the requirement for outlet access. Wireless components allow for placement anywhere, permitting more comprehensive surveillance indoors or outdoors. Additionally, without the need for installment of electrical wires, wireless security cameras can be repositioned at any time.
Another advantage of going wireless is the cost-effectiveness of installation. Without the need to run and conceal wires, installation is fast and less expensive.
Besides just understanding the benefits of wireless security camera systems, there are also various factors to consider before making a purchase. It is important to first consider your specific needs, the budget available, the size of the home or business, and desired functionality.
Digital security camera systems range in price from around $200 to $1,000 per unit depending on overall quality, number of cameras, and viewing access. Obviously, with a larger home, it would be important to purchase a system with more cameras.
If night security is a concern, investigate that options. With the advances in technology, many wireless security cameras are now capable of revealing amazingly clear images in the dark.
Some wireless security camera systems come with a communication system that allows verbal communication between two people via the receiver and the camera.
There is still a choice of black & white or colour. Although this is basically a personal preference, clarity comes into play here. You can find wireless cameras with either, and budget may be the determining factor.
You also need to decide if it is important to be able to customize the wireless units in the future by choosing a system that allows for the capability to add additional cameras, monitors and storage.
Other options to consider include:
- Online storage systems
- Visual quality
- Viewing range
- Battery power or power cord
- signal strength
- Date-stamp recordings
- Analog or digital
After understanding the options available when purchasing a wireless security camera system, remember to never buy sight unseen. With something as crucial as security, it’s imperative to work with an experienced supplier like the certified experts at OneTouch AV. To see in real-time that Security Cameras – They’re Not All Created Equal or if you need any help designing your audio visual or Security systems please feel free to contact us.