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  • Tips on Buying a CCTV System

    There are many types of CCTV systems on the market. The traditional analog systems consist of a recording device like VCR. Nowadays, new cameras are IP based and are networked together so that any camera’s images can be viewed from anywhere on the network and digital storage is used to record the images.
    Consider the following to help you decide on buying a CCTV System:

    •Decide what you want to monitor.
    •How many cameras do you need, 1, 2, 4, or 8, or even more?
    •Black and white or color?
    •Consider your image storage.
    •Select a monitor that is compatible with the resolution of your CCTV camera system.
    Last edited by SIW Editor; 03-01-2012, 04:09 PM. Reason: spammy
    CCTV Cameras, IR Lamp, Surveillance Equipment, Control Equipment, Patrol Guard, and other security products.


  • #2
    CCTV / Video surveillance

    Here are some concluding buying tips that CCTV buyers should consider when making a CCTV system purchase.

    Warranty
    Branded CCTV components are highly reliable and are expected to deliver on their promises. However, even if there are any faulty products, these are most likely to fail within the first 90 days of use which is within the manufacturer’s warranty period. Therefore, purchasing extended warranty coverage may not be required.

    Maintenance:
    It is advisable to consider an appropriate maintenance plan for the CCTV system. A fairly-priced maintenance contract can go a long way in increasing the life of the CCTV system. Moreover, cleaning and maintaining the product on a regular basis can detect and keep major problems at bay.

    Legal issues:
    Use of dummy cameras to deter offenders may backfire and cause legal issues. It is also important to note that it is illegal to tape audio. People can be monitored without consent but taping voices is considered an intrusion on privacy.

    Need-gap:
    Understand your exact needs before purchasing a CCTV system. Purchasing a high end product for basic security needs will obviously be a waste of money.

    Demonstration:
    Get a demonstration of the CCTV in office settings from the dealer; it is the best way to evaluate the effectiveness of the system you are planning to buy.
    Face Recognition System
    Biometric Access Control
    Visitor Management System

    Comment


    • #3
      There is one more:

      Transmission
      It can be wireless or wired, both having advantages and drawbacks.
      Wireless is easy to set-up and to change, remove and transfer, but it may be disturbed. Wired is more reliable but installation may require piercing holes in the walls, making it fixed and somewhat cumbersome.
      >Smart-Guardian<
      3+1 security system motion light+camera+alarm
      Protect your home& Save the money

      Comment


      • #4
        I've come to believe that almost every commercial CCTV system should include at least one camera that is strategically positioned (e.g. entrance, cash register, check-in counter, parking lot entrance), properly selected and configured to reliably capture recognition-quality video (facial, license plate, etc.) with lighting appropriate for accurate color rendition. Even one such camera adds immeasurably to the value of the entire system and in some cases might let you save some costs elsewhere in the system design.
        Last edited by SecTrainer; 10-14-2010, 09:29 AM.
        "Every betrayal begins with trust." - Brian Jacques

        "I can't predict the future, but I know that it'll be very weird." - Anonymous

        "There is nothing new under the sun." - Ecclesiastes 1:9

        "History, with all its volumes vast, hath but one page." - Lord Byron

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by SecTrainer View Post
          I've come to believe that almost every commercial CCTV system should include at least one camera that is strategically positioned (e.g. entrance, cash register, check-in counter, parking lot entrance), properly selected and configured to reliably capture recognition-quality video (facial, license plate, etc.) with lighting appropriate for accurate color rendition. Even one such camera adds immeasurably to the value of the entire system and in some cases might let you save some costs elsewhere in the system design.
          Why only one? Every camera should be "strategically positioned", as long as you have a true understanding of what kind of an image you can realistically expect from a camera.

          Cameras are a tool, and with strengths and limitations, just like any other tool. a 380 VTL camera recording 7FPS at CIF is just fine if you know exactly where to position it with the maximum effectiveness.

          That's why I don't really trust any camera sales rep or marketing guy who's never spent time installing cameras. It's not about specs but how you use it.
          The CCTV Blog.

          "Expert" is something like "leader". It's not a title that you can ever claim for yourself no matter what you might know or might have done. It's a title that others bestow on you based on their assessment of what you know and what you have done.

          -SecTrainer

          Comment


          • #6
            I didn't say "only one", CM. I said "at least one".

            However, to answer the question, cameras are installed for a variety of purposes as you know, and in some cases it's perfectly okay to install a camera that provides a wide-angle view with little or nothing in the way of "recognizability". It might be sufficient, for instance, to know whether a gate is open or closed...or whether traffic is obstructed or not...or whether there's a vehicle parked in a fire lane...or a camera might only need to confirm a motion detector's alarm state...etc. Okay, maybe for those purposes (and because the client is screaming about every dollar), we can get away with something that's not necessarily top grade optics, has a wide-angle lens and poor color fidelity, if any. Lack of detail isn't a big deal for that purpose.

            My point was that most commercial venues need at least one camera that's selected (especially the lens FL) and positioned for the specific purpose of giving enough detail to permit identifying/recognizing individuals, or perhaps in other cases license plates, etc. - either as they enter or leave the facility or sensitive areas of the facility. As it is now, we have many systems out there that are practically worthless in terms of providing this capability, wouldn't you agree? Such systems could be vastly improved even by upgrading or adding even a single camera for that purpose if that's all you can get authorized.

            In general, especially with fixed-FL lenses, you're talking about a tradeoff between FOV and resolution, right? Higher resolution in the image is going to mean a larger FL lens with a narrower angle and smaller FOV for a given target distance, which might not be appropriate for a given camera's specific purpose. It would certainly be nice if all the cameras were monitored PTZ units (to have the best of both worlds), but in many cases it just wouldn't be practical to do that. If so, you could still probably talk the client into installing (at least) one camera that does provide the "reconizability factor" when it comes time to answer not just the question "what happened?", but "who dunnit?".

            Clients generally want a system that sees everything and costs nothing...and they've seen retail systems that promise the moon for $21.95, tax included. They figure "Okay - one camera for the parking lot, one camera for the warehouse, and now I can see everything". Well, yes you see everything...and you see nothing.

            Incidentally, I agree that it's not about specs. The best use of specs is for comparison purposes (in relative terms) when choosing between various alternatives, or when faced with performance tradeoffs, not as an absolute measure of anything.
            Last edited by SecTrainer; 10-14-2010, 03:21 PM.
            "Every betrayal begins with trust." - Brian Jacques

            "I can't predict the future, but I know that it'll be very weird." - Anonymous

            "There is nothing new under the sun." - Ecclesiastes 1:9

            "History, with all its volumes vast, hath but one page." - Lord Byron

            Comment


            • #7
              Yes, that makes sense.

              Just yesterday, I talked to a customer who asked for a specific function. When I told her it doesn't exist, she objected based on the fact that she say it on CSI. Part of my job is to deflate fantasies like that.

              On the other hand, lots of times a customer will want to spend money that they don't have to, and one of my favorite parts of the job is finding cheaper and more efficient ways of doing stuff based on my understanding of not just technology (like a lot of salespeople) but also application.

              Helps that I'm not on commission, of course...
              The CCTV Blog.

              "Expert" is something like "leader". It's not a title that you can ever claim for yourself no matter what you might know or might have done. It's a title that others bestow on you based on their assessment of what you know and what you have done.

              -SecTrainer

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by CameraMan View Post
                Just yesterday, I talked to a customer who asked for a specific function. When I told her it doesn't exist, she objected based on the fact that she say it on CSI. Part of my job is to deflate fantasies like that.
                Would you mind elaborating on that feature? I'd be interested to see what she thought could really be done.

                As far as the identifying factor, I've seen a few 420 line entry door cameras hidden inside height strips or an aluminum door frame pieces. Those can get images within a few feet of the perps face most times.
                EZWatch Security Cameras

                Comment


                • #9
                  Identify license plates from moving vehicles... vehicles driving past her house, that is. Vehicles driving at about 45-50MPH, without the possibility of a head-on shot.
                  The CCTV Blog.

                  "Expert" is something like "leader". It's not a title that you can ever claim for yourself no matter what you might know or might have done. It's a title that others bestow on you based on their assessment of what you know and what you have done.

                  -SecTrainer

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Hmm... did she ask for one of their projection display, gesture controlled supercomputers that can match fingerprints in under 5 seconds? I think everyone needs one of those.
                    EZWatch Security Cameras

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by CameraMan View Post
                      Identify license plates from moving vehicles... vehicles driving past her house, that is. Vehicles driving at about 45-50MPH, without the possibility of a head-on shot.
                      Are you stating that this customer wants to capture license plate on moving vehicle that has no clear shot on front or the back of such vehicle??? Wow... movies really stretch the reality of such technology.
                      http://www.cctvshowroom.com
                      http://www.everythingcctv.com

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Hi Shuiinfo,

                        Here are some more tips:
                        1. Choose CCTV cameras with CCD technology: CCTV use either CMOS (complimentary metal-oxide semiconductor) or CCD (charged-couple device) as their image sensors. CMOS sensors are cheaper to manufacture and they are more susceptible to noise thereby producing images that are of poor quality. Most quality CCTV cameras takes advantage of CCD sensors as they are able to produce high-quality, low noise images.

                        2. Check for CCTV camera resolution: The resolution of an image can be measured by how many TV lines a security camera produces in an image. A higher number will mean it has a better resolution and a better resolution results in better overall image quality. The standard resolution for most security cameras are roughly 350 to 380 TV lines. A 400 TV line will give a good resolution while a 500 TV line will exhibit the best resolution.

                        3. Use the right lens for your CCTV camera: The type of lens you use in a CCTV camera will decide the camera’s viewing angle. This determines the overall clarity of the image under different lighting conditions. A security camera’s lens can either be monofocal or varifocal. A monfocal lens has a fixed focal length while the varifocal lens can be adjusted within different focal length using only one lens. These lenses can be fitted with either a manual iris or an auto iris. The advantage of using an auto iris is that it can automatically adjust the opening of the iris depending on the lighting conditions which results in clearer images.
                        Attendance Tracking Software
                        Attendance Systems

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Online CCTV Sales

                          Hi Cameraman

                          Thanks for your spot on blog, Ive had a E.Store for two years its growing all the time, most E.store arnt even holding stock ,their goods are drop shipped, this is good for the little guy,
                          he can act like the big boys online the customer would never know,

                          Best

                          CCSCameras

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Number plate Cameras

                            Hi if you are looking to capture number plate of vehicles, you need ANPR cameras
                            one side of the camera is IR the other side is a standard low light camera high res,with its shutter almost closed, you then need PC software to record it ,There is a lot of information
                            over at the city Sync site, they Manufacture this product

                            Best

                            Steve

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              How about the image quality of the camera? A CCTV system is useless when the quality of its image is poor and blurred. So, I guess, this one should be included.

                              Comment

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