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CCTV Surveillance System Guidance?

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  • ricardoernesto
    replied
    Originally posted by integrator97 View Post
    We use exit cameras from Honeywell (formerly Silent Witness) called Exitview, and also from Camden Controls. These are in the form of a height strip.
    Does Honeywell Exitview cameras are really good to use. What about its specifications and technical aspects.

    Leave a comment:


  • techvisiondvrs.com
    replied
    DVR Selection

    Lastly, in regards to a recommendation of a DVR. I will normally attempt not to use a forum to advertise our products, but in this case I think that our EX Series 16 channel DVR http://www.techvisiondvrs.com will provide you with all the specifications you are looking for and will save you a lot of money. Unfortunately we are a distributor and only sell to security/CCTV dealers, resellers and installers so you might want to contact one of the forum members you've been in contact with to quote you pricing.

    Leave a comment:


  • techvisiondvrs.com
    replied
    Frame rate and resolution of DVR

    Cat,
    I definitely agree with the other members advising you regarding the frame rate for your application. The most important task for a security dealer or integrator is the selection of the right equipment for each application. In your case, I would say that a lower frame rate and higher resolution is the way to go. Many standalone DVRs will offer 704x480 resolution at a slower frame rate. Be careful when reviewing the specifications of the DVR you are considering. Most DVRs advertise 704x480 resolution, but there is a big difference between the display resolution and the recorded or playback resolution. You want to be sure that the DVR records in 704x480, D1 or 4CIF. Most standalone DVRs that do offer recording at 704x480 do so at 7.5 fps on every channel. 7.5fps video should be more than adequate for your application. In addition, you will want to consider the storage needed for high resolution recording at increased frame rates. There are a couple of DVRs out there that offer both Realtime (30fps) recording and 704x480 resolution at the same time, but I don't think you need to spend the money on such an upgrade.
    As far as storage goes, some DVRs will allow for as much as 4.5 terabytes of internal storage. On a 16 camera system recording motion only at 7.5 fps at 704x480 resolution using H.264 compression, this could give you as much as 4-5 months of storage. Your other options would be to add additional external storage or back the video up to DVDs, Flash Drives or external storage drives.

    Leave a comment:


  • integrator97
    replied
    Here's my link for the frame rate demos. It's 1, 5, 10 & 30 fps (frame per second). As you will see, not a whole lot is lost by dropping to 10 fps, but you gain 3 times as long in storage, or you can up the quality.

    It's a 13 MB zip file.


    Side note. When we used time lapse recorders (video tape) for ATM's, we ran them on 240 hour mode and changed the tape weekly. That's 1 picture every 4 seconds. (Not 4 pictures per second). But that's 15 pictures a minute, which wasn't bad for an ATM, cause it takes that long to do a transaction.

    Leave a comment:


  • Rooney
    replied
    Originally posted by cat View Post
    Rooney, those look fantastic for my purposes.
    Any leads on where to get them?
    I see Honeywell has a set they are proud of.. the retail price at around $400 seems little steep.
    There are other manufacturers that make them as well. The prices vary from around $300-$400. I know it may seem steep but the higher the resolution the better off you will be. And they do give great pictures of persons entering and leaving. As well as a wide view of inside the store if mounted on the inside door frame. Most of them have the camera mounted at about 5 ft. so even if the person is trying to avoid the camera and holds thier head down you will still probably get a good shot of them. I also mounted a camera next to the door about 5-10' away on the opposite side of the height strip facing generally towards a direction of the door but getting the interior so they don't even think of the height strip and ussualy face it when they exit.

    Keep in mind that sometimes it is better to use a combination of covert as well as very visible cameras. Placed in a way that the person trying to avoid being on camera will face one of the covert cameras. Use high resolution for the covert cams (520tvl +).

    Hope that helps you.

    Leave a comment:


  • integrator97
    replied
    SecTrainer beat me to it, but is right on the 30 fps. Unless you're watched card dealers, you probably don't need it. I'll upload some demos when I get to the office, that show the same scene in 4 speeds. I personally like 10 for most applications.

    Leave a comment:


  • SecTrainer
    replied
    Not to complicate things, but a few other things come to mind:

    1. Since expansibility seems to be a consideration, I'd consider incorporating that in the initial cable/wiring plan. In other words, go ahead and pull both what you need now and what you will foreseeably need for expansion. There are both cost and design advantages that pay off down the road (i.e., it forces you to think about power needs, etc. so that your current system doesn't wind up limiting your future options, and it makes expansion much easier and cheaper as well). It's also amazing how often it happens that the company that does the initial pull is no longer in business two years later, and no one can figure out what they did.

    2. The system should provide for observation of employee activity in areas like the stock room, etc. as well as the activities of customers. For most retail businesses, employees (not robbers or shoplifters) represent the largest single threat of many different types of loss and most systems should not - repeat not - be designed around the purpose of providing evidence in the event of a robbery. Most retailers continue to lose money (which they often mis-attribute to shoplifting, etc.) despite these systems for the simple reason that they're watching the wrong people. You could get robbed four times a year with an SLE of $500 per, and still be losing five times that or more out the back door.

    3. Be sure to have a good plan for media backup, off-site storage and rotation - including the loss of media if it gets tied up as evidence (potentially for years).

    4. Remember that in terms of robbery loss prevention, CCTV has little or no value. Ski masks are cheap, and addicts don't care. Much more important are secure cash-handling procedures, limiting the amounts allowed to accumulate in cash drawers, high-bill limits, slot safes that employees can't open (with prominent signage to that effect) and are properly anchored, frequent but randomly-timed deposits, etc. And if the store has an ATM machine, for crying out loud don't put it next to the front plate glass window or door - cameras or no cameras. Put it well inside the store instead...for both good security and even better retail reasons (you want people to have to walk past those tempting Baby Ruth bars and chips, right?)

    5. 30 fps (1/1) recording sounds too high to me on practical grounds, and is not necessary to capture an acceptable level of action - which is different from recognition. You're not producing a TV show. Remember that a face (for recognition purposes) can be captured with a good digital camera still shot - we do it at picnics and weddings with our little digitals all the time, right? Recording speed adds nothing to that. So, if anything, I'd put the best-res camera on the "bottleneck" or "funnel" point, and then use lower resolution for the "action" capture, but not at more than 1/3 or 1/4 speed, and perhaps even less than that.

    Check out this page with a DVR requirement calculator (scroll down). For 1/1 at 720 x 240 res, normal (not even "enhanced" or "fine") picture quality gives you 158 GB in just one full day. (The same page has a lens calculator, incidentally).
    Last edited by SecTrainer; 08-08-2008, 10:56 AM.

    Leave a comment:


  • cat
    replied
    integrator97,

    Those look ideal but at almost $400 a set I'm afraid they'll eat too far into their budget.

    Thanks for the pointer!
    Last edited by cat; 08-08-2008, 01:07 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • cat
    replied
    techvisiondvrs.com,

    I was trying to not get any more confused than I already am so I was staying away from the DVR discussion when I first posted.
    Your point is very relative and needs consideration.. and I think I can keep up with what I've been given so far.. so here goes.

    I'd like to have as near real time as possible (30 fps per channel), a minimum record resolution of 704x480, the ability to monitor, *playback/search (ideally over the network) and record at the same time (triplexed?) while saving the best possible quality to disk.
    It needs to have user accessible drives for either dumping or swapping.
    Storage isn't an issue as I have access to plenty of commercial server storage where I can dump the data.

    I'm currently looking at the 16 channel DVRs from: Intellicam (either the XLA or RTA), CBC/Ganz 16NRT and the Pelco DX4600.
    Has anyone had experience with any of these units that could point out the pros or cons?
    Are there other units I should consider?
    Thanks folks, you've been a big help.

    cat

    Leave a comment:


  • cat
    replied
    Originally posted by darkenna View Post
    Agreed with all the above. In addition, consider this: most systems and system owners want coverage of the entrances & exits. This is usually done form the inside due to cost and space restrictions. Someone who is going to rob or burgle a place is going to enter in such a way that their face is obscured from the cameras they know are going to be there (head down, hat pulled low over eyes and face, face in a book, etc.). On the way out, however, they are in a hurry (not taking the time to cover their face), but they will be moving away from the door cams... so the only shots will be of the top/back of their heads. A camera mounted to point towards the interior from a door would be very useful in this situation, would it not? Cameras mounted on the exterior walls of vestibules pointing inwards are invaluable in robbery, smash-n-grab, and grab-n-run situations. Perhaps even a door-frame mini cam, mounted at about 4' or 5' up, with a tight angled shot across the doorway.

    We're actually including "exit" cams like these in all of our new camera installations. Just something to consider. People are usually concerned with seeing the bad guys coming. Sometimes, it's better to be able to see them going.
    I like the way you think, I may even quote you in my presentation.

    Leave a comment:


  • cat
    replied
    Rooney, those look fantastic for my purposes.
    Any leads on where to get them?
    I see Honeywell has a set they are proud of.. the retail price at around $400 seems little steep.

    Leave a comment:


  • cat
    replied
    Originally posted by CameraMan View Post
    Remember, in order to make an ID in court, you need either 1) incredibly high resolution cameras and recorders combined with labor intensive video enhancement work using expensive software, or 2) the person's face must take up almost a quarter of the screen. So always be conservative on how many cameras you need. Buying an extra camera is cheaper than not having evidence in case of a major incident.
    Good advise, thank you.
    As best I can tell we will ultimately need 8 to 10 cameras.
    I'm still unsure of camera placement at this point so for simplicities sake I'll narrow it down to 2 good exterior cams viewing the immediate areas surrounding the doors (20' x 30' area) mounted at 15' overhead and 2 good interior facial quality camera/lens setups that will continuously cover 4' x 8' areas.

    Force people to be on camera by identifying 'bottlenecks' (places people have no choice but to pass in order to get to the target, preferably a narrow corridor or doorway) and zoom in to get a tight shot of the bottleneck (from at least two angles if possible) at a shallow angle (put the camera further away with a zoom lens rather than up close, so you get a shot of a face rather than a shot of the tops of heads, unless you want to identify hats and nothing else).
    Roger the bottleneck and shallow angle.

    For your outdoor cameras, get broad shots of your exteriors, but face the bottlenecks, so you can go to court and say <show video from camera three> "As you can clearly see, a person wearing a green coat and a Cleveland Indians cap approached the entrance at 7:32 PM. We can see the face of the person, by switching to camera four, which faces the doorway from the inside. At 7:33 PM, you can see <switch to camera four> THE DEFENDANT!"

    And remember, night shots are tricky, as are long shots. Always have cameras supporting each other, meaning, each camera should always be shown physically in the picture from another camera, limiting your blind spots.
    My idea of an ideal setup would be to have 2 interior cams on each door for coming and going ("exit cam" idea borrowed from darkenna"), a small area cam outside of each door and an "big picture" cam for each side of the building.
    I'm fairly certain I'll have to work the client up to this point a stage or two at a time.
    Thank you again for your time,

    cat

    Leave a comment:


  • cat
    replied
    Originally posted by MetzLyov View Post
    Your requirements are very broad.. and do you have specific target pricing for these components?
    Not necessarily, I will have to sell the business owner on the units and their pricing.
    I'm hoping to get the basics (DVR and around 8 cams) for around $3 g's retail before installation.

    One suggestion may be to use hi res color indoor vandal resistant minidomes with varifocal AI lens and for outdoors, use vandal and weather proof minidomes with day/night cameras and varifocal and AI lens.

    Another suggestion can be to use discrete color hi res cameras (or sometimes referred as fixed cameras or brick cameras) and add a varifocal AI lens for indoor... As for the outdoor, use same type of cameras except day/night and better varifocal AI lens and then put them into outdoor housing (depends where this customer is, you may need the same housing to come with heater and blower).

    Or you can go dirt cheap and get equipment from Sam's Club or from Costco.

    As for DVR, good observation for embedded systems - they are very easy to use and easy to operate.. Select decent manufacturer equipment with decent warranty, preferably three years warranty.

    How many cameras do you need for this location?
    They need at least 10 in my estimation but I may have to start out with 4 to begin with.

    I have these items so far in my feature "want list":
    1. tamper and weather resistant enclosures
    2. auto iris
    3. vari-focal lens (?)
    3. heaters (?)
    4. True Day/Night capability (Goes to B/W at night for better quality shots under artificial lighting)

    My question is, who makes the best guts and lenses and where can I source them at a reasonably moderate pricing?
    I've heard the Sony super HAD is a desirable camera and that glass is better than plastic in regard to the lens.
    Thanks!

    Leave a comment:


  • integrator97
    replied
    We use exit cameras from Honeywell (formerly Silent Witness) called Exitview, and also from Camden Controls. These are in the form of a height strip.

    Leave a comment:


  • techvisiondvrs.com
    replied
    There's more to it than the cameras

    Cat,
    I am new to this forum and I do believe that you have received some great advice. Please keep in mind that having a high resolution camera and close up images is not all you can do to ensure great quality video. It is great to have a high resolution camera, but if the DVR doesn't record high resolution than you won't be able to benefit from all that the camera has to offer. I recommend that you select a DVR that can record in 704x480 resolution. This is often refered to as D1 resolution, but actually true D1 is 740x480. Either way, using a DVR that can record in higher resolution means that you can get maximum benefit from the high resolution camera. Also, when enhancing images for identification, you will get a better quality enlargment than a DVR that recorded in 360x240 (CIF). Also, consider the compression used for storing the video on the hard drive. The best quality image will often come from the lowest compression like MJPEG, however the storage capacity of your DVR's hard drive will be greatly reduced. I would recommend MPEG 4 part 10 (H.264) which will give you the best combination of storage and quality of video. Getting great video that can be used to identify the bad guy is often an art form where you have to balance proper camera placement, precise camera and lens selection and high quality recording device.

    Hope this helps!

    Leave a comment:

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