Archive for the ‘ CCTV Articles ’ Category

How to view your Web-Service using Internet Explorer 11 in MS Windows 10 OS

Written By:
Monday, August 31st, 2015

This video will guide you step by step on how to access your CCTV system via the web interface using the new Microsoft Windows 10 operating system.

Web Service on Windows 10
Click the image above if top video does not play.


So many options when choosing a DVR for Surveillance Video!

Written By:
Thursday, August 27th, 2015

So, you’ve had enough of hoodlums and thugs stealing your Garden Gnomes and knocking over your mailbox. And those employees! OYVAY! They keep putting Metamucil in the coffee. Before you choose a security recording device for your home or business, you should educate yourself on the different types of recorders as well as the most important differences. Let’s take a look at the options available and under what circumstances they are best suited.


You basically have two options for wiring up a security system . . . CAT5/CAT6 network cable or RG59 coaxial with a power supply (AKA Siamese cable). If you already have the network cable installed you can pretty much quit reading this now and take a look at our NVRs because most people will agree that IP will give you the best images with the highest resolution! If you don’t have network cable installed, you’ve got enough other options to choose from so let’s take a look at them.

  1. Analog – The traditional Analog CCTV surveillance system transmits data over Coaxial Cable and back to the DVR where it is digitized and stored on a Hard Drive using a FIFO (First in First out) method. Make sure you have sufficient hard drive space so that you won’t have to worry about recording over older footage. You can still view live streaming video or you can access recorded footage, locate specific incidents, zoom in on particular images and save those to an external device to present to the authorities if you ever need to. Analog is being phased out by manufacturers and is already getting harder to find, so if you still have analog cameras and insist on keeping those, you might want to consider getting a Hybrid DVR that handles multiple technologies including Analog, CVI and even IP. Remember, while 960H is a huge improvement over previous D1 resolution, it doesn’t even hold a candle to 1080p megapixel security footage!

  2. HD-CVI – Developed and created by Dahua, HD-CVI is one of the newer technologies and stands for High Definition Composite Video Interface. It allows users to transmit video, audio and control over the same coaxial cable that was previously only capable of transmitting video. With an unprecedented transmission distance of up to 1,600 feet, HD-CVI technology gives you tremendous versatility when it comes to camera placement and distance from the recorder. Because of the ability to utilize the coax cable for control, you can use the OSD (on-screen display) to adjust a variety of settings for security cameras including exposure, white balance, back light compensation, day & night selection, motion triggers, blocking, etc. Remember, HD-CVI cameras ONLY work with HD-CVI capable DVRs and vice versa! Check out our DVR-CVI8M-1080-DH-V2 that can accommodate 8 HD-CVI cameras OR you can mix any combination of Analog, CVI or 2 IP cameras for under $399.00!  

  3. HD-TVI – This was created jointly by Hikvision and Techpoint and because it was released a little later than HD-CVI, it isn’t as popular but there are some benefits. Hikvision has opted for somewhat of an “open source” in relation to component manufacturing. This has opened the market to over 100 different manufacturers who have/are developed HD-TVI solutions and has created more competition. HD-TVI recorders are compatible with any HD-TVI camera on any channel! Overall, under optimal conditions where you have all of the same settings, are using the same type and quality of cable, and have the placement of the cameras the same distance from the DVRs, you shouldn’t notice a difference in image quality. Based on some independent tests, HD-TVI offers the longest transmission without signal degradation across both RG59 and CAT5 (with balun) cabling. We will be carrying the HD-TVI technology shortly under our PRIME designation.
  4. >Hybrid/Tribrid – A combination of different technologies that work together in one unit. We offer a variety of Hybrid/Tribrid combinations that help you integrate your older analog cameras with newer HD-CVI and IP cameras. This works out great if you feel like you’re constantly trying to keep up with technology and have older cameras sitting around that still work. Hook them up and purchase a couple new HD-CVI or IP cameras. Some of our Hybrid/Tribrids offer full use of 16 IP cameras AND even give you the ability to double that number with an additional 16 analog cameras! Others like our very reasonably priced TRIDVR-ELE16ME are capable of handling analog, CVI and up to 2 IP cameras.


There are numerous options, and many people who are familiar with the different systems have their preferences already. This is nothing more than an informational article to help you compare these different technologies and decide what will work best for you in your specific situation. My personal take on this is that the Tribrid DVRs are the best value for your money since they allow you to be flexible and give you the opportunity to sample the different cameras, try different functions, and decide what technology works best for you.

If you happen to own a Medical Marijuana Dispensary or need to meet the state law requirements for a retail establishment, we are I-502 and Amendment 64 experts and we can help ensure that you will pass your inspection! If you’ve already created a site plan (it doesn’t matter if it’s a professional CAD drawing or a sketch on a napkin), you can simply email a copy/scan to us and we will help get you the best setup and best placement of the cameras so you can pass your inspection. You can be rest-assured when you are setting up your Marijuana venture because we back up our products for your I-502 and Amendment 46 Inspection with a Certificate of Guarantee stating that the system we helped you choose has met or exceeded all of the specifications that are needed to have you pass your inspection.


You can call our sales staff at 866-573-8878 Monday-Friday between 8:00 AM and 8:00 PM EST and they will help you determine what will work best for you based on location, building size, existing lighting, etc. all while keeping you within your price range.


What’s the Difference Between a Hybrid DVR, Tribrid DVR and an Analog DVR

Written By:
Wednesday, August 26th, 2015

It used to be that there was only one kind of security recorder, the CCTV Analog DVR. Now there are a variety of technologies for surveillance recording such as Analog, HD-CVI and IP Network.

Analog DVRs can record up to 960H resolution and the cameras are connect directly to the DVR via coax cable.

HD-CVI DVRs can record up to 1080p resolution and use the same coax cable as the analog DVRs. This is a great choice to upgrade your surveillance to High Definition without incurring the high costs associated with re-wiring to Ethernet Cable.

IP Network Video Recorders (NVRs) can record up to 12MP and the cameras need to be connected with an Ethernet Cable (CAT5/6).

Now, there are security recorders that can combine these technologies all on one device and that is the focus of this article. I will be focusing on the security recorders that can record up to 32 cameras on one device. These are the 16CH Hybrid DVR, the 16CH Tribrid DVR, and the 32CH Analog DVR. All of these DVRs look exactly the same on the front as you will see in the following image.

32 Camera DVR

But, it’s the inner workings and the backs of these DVRs that are different.

The 16CH Hybrid DVR

This Hybrid DVR brings together two surveillance technologies (Analog and IP) on one recorder.

16CH Hybrid DVR Back
16CH Hynrid DVR – Can record up to 32 Cameras (16 Analog and 16 IP)

As you can see in the image above there are a lot of BNC ports where you would connect coax cable with a BNC Connector. The top row contains 16 Video-In Ports. This is where each analog camera gets connected to. As I said, this is a 16CH DVR but it will record up to 16 Analog Cameras (connected with coax and BNC) as well as 16 IP Cameras. Where are the connections for the IP cameras you might ask? That’s an excellent question. In order to record IP cameras (up to 1080p resolution) you will need to connect your IP cameras to a POE switch. That POE switch needs to be connected to the same network as this Hybrid and you will be able to view and record all 32 cameras.

The 16CH Tribrid DVR

This Tribrid can record all three technologies (analog, HD-CVI and IP) all on one device.

16CH Tribrid DVR
16CH Tribrid DVR – Can record up to 32 Cameras (16 Analog/HD-CVI and 16 IP)

In the above image you will see the same 16 Video-In BNC Ports as in the Hybrid. These are where you can choose to either connect analog cameras or HD-CVI cameras using the same coax cable. Again, just as with the hybrid, this 16CH Tribrid can record up to 32 cameras. 16 of those can be a combination of analog and HD-CVI cameras, or all analog, or all HD-CVI. The other 16 cameras can be IP cameras. The IP cameras need to be connected to an external POE switch as with the Hybrid.

The 16CH Analog DVR

This Analog DVR can record only analog cameras (up to 32) all on one device.

32CH Analog DVR
32CH Analog DVR – Can record up to 32 Analog Cameras

As you can see from the image above that this DVR has 32 Video-in BNC ports. This DVR can record up to 32 cameras like the Hybrid and the Tribrid, but it can only record analog cameras.

The Major Difference Between These Recorders

All 3 of these Security Recorders can record up to 32 cameras. The real difference is the ability to record in TRUE HD 1080p Resolution. The Analog DVR can only record in analog up to 960H resolution on all 32 channels whereas the Hybrid and the Tribrid can record in both analog as well as 1080p resolution. The Hybrid can record 16 analog cameras at 960H as well as 16 IP cameras at 1080p Resoloution. The Tribrid scores the best being that it can record either analog or HD-CVI on 16 channels as well as IP at 1080p on another 16 channels. But, the major difference here is that you have the ability to record 32 High Definition cameras at once on the Tribrid if you have 16 HD-CVI cameras and 16 IP cameras.

The similarities between these 3 units is that they all have the ability to record audio. They also have the ability to control other devices such as sirens, strobes and alarms using the alarm inputs and outputs.

Also, all 3 of these security recorders can hold up to 8 hard drives giving you up to 48TB of hard drive space.


Whichever device you choose, you can be confident that these units are powerful security recorders. They each come embedded with a high end dual processor and Linux Operating System. Also, they come equipped with an easy-to-use GUI Interface so they are simple to operate and configure. Which one should you choose? It all depends on whether you want to record in analog or High Definition. Also, whether you want to go with IP or HD-CVI for your HD recording. If you want the best of both High Definition Technologies (HD-CVI and IP), go with the Tribrid.

Even if you have an existing analog system and want to start upgrading to TRUE HD security recording, the Tribrid is perfect for you. Keep some of your analog cameras in tact and replace your old DVR with the Tribrid. And then you can start adding HD cameras at your leisure. If you are upgrading to HD-CVI you can use your cable and power that you used for your analog cameras right where they are. HD-CVI works on standard coax cable. If you are using IP cameras, just make sure you are using Ethernet Cable and connecting them to a POE switch as I stated above.

If you have any questions on which device is best for your needs, get in touch with one of our knowledgeable sales staff. Also, all these recorders as well as the cameras come with free tech support so if at any time along the way you need help on configuring anything, we are just a phone call or chat away. Most times our techies can even log into your recorder remotely and do all the configurations for you.


How to Back Up Your Security Camera Footage with Schedule Backup

Written By:
Tuesday, August 25th, 2015


We get many calls in the tech support department by people looking to keep an offsite backup of their DVR.  Unfortunately, all options are going to utilize valuable upstream bandwidth as well as tax the DVR system while it tries to record video as its primary duty.  Some businesses want to archive video records for various reasons, and the schedule backup solution is an excellent option.  If you need to have it offsite, it can still work because the software uses an address and login criteria to find the machine and access it for backup.  This is a very basic tool, and this article is only going to focus on the basics in order to get you set up and backing up some video to the computer of your choice at the time that you want.  First, you will need to download the Windows only program from our website at this location:  click here


Run the program and login using admin as the username and admin as the password.  When I upgraded to Windows 10, it gave me an error when I tried to run the program.  I right clicked on the icon, chose Properties, and then Compatibility where I was able to set the compatibility mode to Windows 7.  The program ran with no problem after changing that setting.  After you login, you will see the main Schedule Backup window where you can start to configure your backup.


Start by clicking on the Config button and select Device Manage so you can add your DVR or NVR to the software.


You need to add your IP address, login credentials, and give it a good name.  If you have more than one DVR or NVR to backup, it is a good idea to name each device by the location so you can track them easier.  If your computer is not at the site of the DVR or NVR, keep in mind that it will be using the upstream of the Internet connect to send high quality video to the backup computer.  Also consider that you will fill up your computer’s hard drive very fast with high quality video, so you need to consider have vast amounts of storage space to encompass large volumes of data.


If you select Config then Option, you can configure the default save directories by selecting up to five devices as well as how much hard drive space will be used until it moves onto the next device.  The amount used will be the amount of available space on the drive until it reaches the minimum free capacity amount. You can select the default option of Overwrite or Stop for when the drives are full.  On this screen you can click the ellipse next to the Download record file name rule to completely customize the naming convention for your files.


Our next step is to create a backup plan by clicking the Config button, and selecting Backup Plan.

When you see the backup plan box, click the Add button.


This is where you will create your first backup plan.  If you want to backup everything, you would need to click the Multiple-channel button and select all cameras.  Keep in mind that you will be taxing your DVR and bandwidth by requesting massive amounts of video footage to be sent via your upstream or internal network to the computer running the Schedule Backup software.  The Backup Plan period is the time when the DVR will backup the video footage.  The Record Period is the video that you want to backup.  Since the box defaults to Today, you have to choose yesterday since that video footage has already been recorded.  If you are using Multiple-channel, the Record Period will be the same for all channels.  If you want different channels on different time periods, then you need to create a Backup Plan for each channel.  You can be creative on what to backup and when.  The last step is to hit the Start button on the main screen, and it will change to a Stop button so you know it is running.


This tool is an effective way to back up some video footage that you want to save.  Most people do not need to save everything so this will do the trick.  If you need to backup everything, the most effective and fastest way is to take the hard drives out of the unit and replace them with fresh ones.  Moving all video from one drive to another is not practical since the video is already on one drive.  There will be too much stress on the DVR and the network, especially with the massive amount of gigabytes created from high definition video.  For a selective backup or important camera, the Schedule Backup is very useful.  Once you have the backup in the .dav file format, you can open them using the Smart PSS or the player that is available on our website.  The player is a smaller application, so it can easily be distributed with the video.  The files that are backed up will depend on how you are recording the cameras.  I am recording full time, so I have one file for each hour of recording.  That means each day will provide 24 files for each camera.  If you are recording motion, then each file will be one motion event per camera.  This means that you could have thousands of little files, and that will be what the schedule backup software places on your computer.  Full time recording is more manageable, but of course requires more hard drive space.

No matter how you decide to use Schedule Backup, give it a try as it is a free option available for testing.  If you need help setting up the Schedule Backup software, our tech support team can remote in to your computer and do that.

Here are some useful software links:

You can download the Backup Scheduler tool by clicking here.

You can download the Smart PSS Windows (2015) by clicking here.

You can download the Smart PSS for MAC by clicking here.

You can download the Video Player and Converter Downloads by clicking here.


Benefits of an NVR with a Built-in POE Switch

Written By:
Monday, August 17th, 2015

Many of our customers call us to ask why they cannot change the camera’s position when using a built-in POE NVR. The short answer to that is that it is not possible after the cameras are connected for the first time on the NVR. See, the NVR’s POE built-in switch is a separate entity. The idea behind this technology is to offer security, avoid broadcast storm, and in theory separate the traffic from the IP cameras and NVR completely. Also, the most obvious reason to use a built-in POE on these NVRs is to power the cameras from one unit, without using an external POE switch. This will reduce the cost of equipment in theory.

So, why can I not move the cameras to a different position after I plug them in the NVR? Well, the reason is that the MAC Address of the cameras “Sticks” to the port the camera is connected to, and the NVR will not release that unless the NVR gets defaulted completely.

What can I do if I want to change the position of my cameras then?

Ahh, that’s why I’m writing this article, to show you an idea I have that I think could help many customers that are frustrated with this type of setup.

NOTE: Although this article is solely to show a temporary fix to the way the POE works, it is intended to be used ONLY on those NVRs with POE built in. In the near future, a firmware will “fix” or add a different way to accomplish the following task. Any camera added to the built-in POE switch will not be accessible over the LAN interface. Instead, if you would like to access the settings of the cameras, you will then use the NVR’s web interface (EL SERIES IPC ONLY). For ONVIF cameras, you will need to be connected with a computer to one of the ports of the built-in POE Switch and either assign a static IP on your PC Ethernet card or simply get an IP address from the POE switch IP pool. You will then be able to change any settings on the camera.

The Following list will show you the NVR models numbers with Built-in POE:




Lets begin by understand the settings on the NVR. The POE switch, like I said before, is a separate entity from the regular single LAN port. Normally the single Ethernet port of the DVR IP address is The POE side is by default You can change this by going to the network settings. For this article I will be using the web service interface of the NVR. Click on Setup, from the left options, click on Network then all the way to the bottom click on Switch.

POE Switch

Notice that the IP address and default gateway are in the same range, in fact they are the same number. If you planned to change this then you must have the same number on both the IP address and gateway. Also, the IP address here and for the NVR cannot be on the same range. An example is if the LAN port is configured 192.168.1.X where X is a random number from 1-255 then the IP address from the switch side cannot be on that range. You can leave the defaults as is and you will not have any conflict, or if you want to change it to something similar then you can use something like 192.168.x.x where the (x.x) can be any number different from your LAN IP Address.

The next step is to make sure you configure the essential settings for your NVR. Time, Date and DST are essential settings to keep your cameras in sync with the NVR time and to make sure the recordings have the accurate date and time in case an event happens.

Go to Setup>Setting>General and Date&Time. Adjust the date format and time format based on your liking.

Time Format

System Time

Go ahead now and connect the cameras to the POE switch of the NVR. For this demonstration I have 2 cameras connected with a short CAT5e cable. Allow about a minute for the cameras to show up on the screen of the NVR. NOTE: If for some reason the cameras do not come up on the screen, there is a chance that the IP cameras’ IP addresses are set to static and the NVR does not know how to change it to dynamic. Simply disconnect the camera and put it on a external POE switch and change the address using the config tool. You can download the tool here: CONFIG TOOL 2.0.

Assuming that all the cameras are set to dynamic, you should start to see the video streaming in the NVR. Also notice that you can tell when a camera is added automatically to the NVR by checking the LAN Icon displayed in the top left corner. This indicates that the camera is detected for that channel.


I have a total of 4 cameras connected on this NVR. Two of these are connected directly to the unit and two are brought from the network. The next thing to do will be creating a tour that will basically rearrange the cameras the way you want it. Ideally it will be easy for you to make a note of the IP cameras’ channel and what channel you want them to appear. For example, if camera 1 and 3 are not on the channels you want, then all you need to do is create the tour and select the cameras in the order you want them in the tour screen. If you want camera 3 on channel 1 then click on channel 3 first, that indicates the tour that the fist camera in the group will be #3. For this example I will choose camera 3 to go on window 1, camera 4 on window 2, camera 1 on window 4, and lastly camera 2 on window 3.

Below is a picture what it looks like before enabling the tour:


To configure the tour, login to the NVR and click on setup>settings>Display>Tour.


Notice that the NVR has different views (Window Split). On this NVR (4CH NVR ELT) I only have View 1 or View 4. For this trick to work, you will need to uncheck all of the channels on the View 1 channel group. This will ensure that the tour will only display a 4 View Split. From the window split drop down select View 4.


Now in this window, delete the current view of cameras then click on the Green + button to add your own. Like I said before I will click on cameras 3, 4, 2 and 1 to add the view on my screen.


Click on Enable and click on Save. Now this is how my cameras are arranged at this point. NOTE: Due to the nature of the Tour, the screen will refresh every 5 seconds. You will see that the screen goes dark and comes back for a second. I will recommend you to set it to 120 sec so you don’t see the refresh of the screen often.


DISCLAIMER: The purpose of the tour is to arrange the cameras on the main screen. The arrangement of the cameras will not be displayed when viewing the cameras over the web service. Also, in the event of searching for footage, the camera arrangement will not be paired to the channel in the footage. An example of this is if camera #4 was showing originally on channel 1 prior to enabling the tour, then when searching footage for that camera you will need to select channel 1 since that is the original window of the camera in question.