There Are Numerous Digital Video Recorder Options in the Security Camera World
If one talks about a digital video recorder, then they usually assume that one means a set top box for televisions. However, fans of the Security Camera King know very well that there is much more to it than just that. Security camera devices can easily be connected to a digital video recorder to eliminate the necessary videotape that usually comes with a closed circuit television installation. Many types of setups can easily get crowded. In part, this is because of how much space it takes to store videotapes. That’s where a digital video recorder comes in and saves the day.
However, that doesn’t mean that videotape or DVD was completely replaced by the digital video recorder unit when it got on the scene. Many people still needed some sort of concrete storage to ensure that they were able to hold onto footage after it was shot. Fortunately, things have begun to get easier these days, and security rated digital video recorder boxes usually have an option to transfer recorded video over a LAN or straight to a computer.
Some might come with the ability to transfer data to flash memory, or even to some sort of external hard disk device. In these cases, it might be important to keep an eye on memory usage. After all, a lot of video can easily eat up an entire hard drive if it gets left unchecked. On the other hand, the amount of space that is taken up by a handful of external hard drives is nowhere near that of tapes. Many people probably have memories of the infamous monitoring room with a full collection from the floor to the ceiling. Many businesses probably still have one of these places, or at least have a bunch of DVDs just lying around on the floor. This is not the ideal way to preserve video.
Long-term surveillance video preservation makes sense in some applications, so one might want to invest in a few hard disk storage devices and use these to actually maintain some control over the actual material that they have recorded. For that matter, if one were able to actually store their DVDs in a responsible manner, they would record some of the digital video recorder data straight onto DVD. If one elected to, they could even save it to data DVD. That is to say that they could take advantage of the high storage volume of a DVD without actually burning a DVD meant to be played in a DVD player. Savvy computer users can usually burn digital computer files straight to a DVD file system without any other concerns, though these can then only be accessed again from a computer system with the appropriate video codecs installed. Some people might even want to convert their old VHS recordings to DVD to save them, and then begin to use their shiny new digital video recorder for all of their new video capture needs.
The class of digital video recorder that is normally used for entertainment class television programming normally is attached to a particular device and interfaces with it to record shows and movies. Some of these do have multiple channels, and are able to interface with more than one program at the same time. Certain IPTV packages include this as an actual feature, and try to make it a selling point with verbiage that suggests that a number of different shows can be recorded at once. These can be connected in various manners to the device, and some machines use a sort of Internet connectivity networking adapter. This is probably the most interesting aspect of these devices for those that work with closed circuit television systems.
Many people in the security industry have talked about the fact that some digital video recorder devices can be used to send information to third parties by way of a telephone line, the Internet or other methods of communication. While this is accurate, it does not actually influence the world of CCTV machines. A few people have confused the fact that many of these devices are able to do this with the idea that all digital video recorders do. This is a worthwhile concern, since no one that works in surveillance would want his or her footage to get leaked out. However, people can rest easy since these devices are only used with subscription IPTV, cable or satellite entertainment television services. Even if one went to the length of recycling one for surveillance use, the module probably would not even work the way that one might fear that it would.
While most people would not want to ever even do that anyways, there are some elements of features from the entertainment industry that can be found on regular digital video recorder boxes. These features are safe and everyone should be happy to use them. For example, many devices are capable of recording from multiple channels. What this means is that they are able to interface with more than one camera at a time. When numerous cameras are connected to the same device, they each use an individual channel. For instance, a device that can record from four channels can generally take four different image streams and record them simultaneously.
Moreover, people should recall that the idea of IPTV has been very important in the digital video recorder industry. There are IP digital video recorder boxes on the market that can be configured to work with the Internet. This means that they can accept video feeds from a remote location in the same way that IP cameras can. The two technologies can be interfaced, which means that a single digital video recorder can be used to record multiple channels from around a number of cameras that are connected to a single network. People that work in the monitoring industry might find this very useful, since it means that a monitoring station that is located in one area can be used to capture footage from across a large region. In fact, it can be used to capture images from all over the nation or even the world.
As always, this means that some people might be able to find additional uses for these IP cameras and networked digital video recorder devices. Many people probably already use some sort of IP camera set up to provide web camera services on their websites. A digital video recorder can be used to capture loads of footage of various events that can later be used for video on demand systems. The footage can be stored for a period of time before it is processed and then later cut up for final viewing. For that matter, some security industry users could do this remotely and paste various bits of surveillance footage online. They might also distribute it to a law enforcement or news agency. Naturally, this is very important when one suspects that some sort of tampering has occurred.
One important thing to note is that there is actually a standards body that lays down a few rules about digital video recorder technology. However, it should also be noted that most of these standards are predictably geared towards those that work with personal home theatre devices. The Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA) is an international organization that has set numerous standards for computer graphics. Way back before modern digital video recorder boxes came around, NEC Home Electronics got together with a group of eight other video display adapter firms to set up a list of standards. These were mostly geared towards producing a standardized 800 x 600 SVGA resolution display. That was probably of particular importance to those that use VGA to BNC technology to interface with their surveillance cameras. VESA has produced numerous other standards, and in 2010 they entered a cooperative agreement with WiGig for sharing certain types of technology that IP camera users might want to investigate.
Digital video recorder owners are probably the most interested in the VESA compatible digital video recorder market. Any DVR that carries the VESA compatibility mark has to be small and light. In fact, they have to be so small and light that they can mount on the back of an LCD monitor that has a set of VESA mounting holes at 100 x 100 mm. This lets users use a personal monitor to save cost and space. Outside of this idea, there is also a market for integrated TV-set digital video recorders, and some security systems have been designed around them. These are literally digital video recorder devices that were built into LCD or LED monitors. Some of these are able to record a number of input streams in parallel, and might have wireless Bluetooth or Wifi ports to connect to them. Some people might want to use them to record from cellular phones or some sort of IP surveillance camera. A particularly sneaky surveillance master could use one as part of a disguised observation system.
Theoretically, one could take an integrated TV-set digital video recorder and use it as a monitor for a store display. It might show some pictures or video that would be part of some other display that would call for a television. Meanwhile, the true purpose of the device would be to capture image from a CCTV network. Naturally, it might be perceived as wasteful to design a display around such a monitor, so it would be best to replace a monitor already in use. For instance, if one is showing a sales demonstration movie in a commercial space already they could remove the monitor showing it and replace it with an integrated TV-set digital video recorder system. This will also be less suspicious to those shifty types that might actually be sadly scoping out an area for a potential crime.
Home computer entertainment system digital video recorder software like MythTV is probably rather ineffective for many types of security camera uses. However, there are some people that might have purchased a number of cameras from the Security Camera King and want to experiment with some open source software. While most people probably don’t care to spend half their day staring at source code, some budding computer programmers really want to know why everything works the way it does. For those types, there actually are a few options available. These work relatively well for what they are designed to do.
Unfortunately, just like everything in the digital video recorder market, many of the free and open source options are geared towards entertainment more than anything else. Few people that work in surveillance would ever find a use for a flashy ten-foot display, and this is exactly what Linux Media Center Edition. While the term Linux is usually associated with security, LinuxMCE is geared more for those that want to experiment with open source television options. Naturally, there’s nothing at all wrong with that. In fact, LinuxMCE does a great job for what it was designed to do, and anyone that wants to experiment with this sort of thing for home theatre systems should be more than happy to. However, it might not be the most effective system for CCTV networks. Klaus Schmidinger’s Video Disk Recorder software might be a bit more useful, but that piece of software is still very much a personal video recorder solution in its stock configuration.
Those that want a far more conventional approach might want to investigate the software that works with equipment purchased from the Security Camera King. Anyone that has a large amount of time and effort invested into such an installation will surely appreciate the elegance of such an easy to use system. As a security camera dealer, they have never misunderstood the needs of individual CCTV users and have never suggested that all DVR devices need to have entertainment functions. Those that want to work with digital video recorder technology and have a need to interface it with their own personal computer device will certainly want to check this out.
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