Posts Tagged ‘ Alarm out ’

The Advantages of Using the Alarm Triggers in a Security Recorder

Written By:
Thursday, October 30th, 2014


A video system has a lot more features than you might realize!

Our security recorders have features that can do more for you than just record. Features such as Alarm Triggers.

Do you realize that you can connect your alarm control panel to your recorder? Program into the alarm input, set it up to send you a notification on the alarm. This will be independent from your alarm monitoring central station. Now you can find out what caused the alarm, see how long it takes for responders to arrive, and how effective they are on arrival. You can verify the accuracy of official reports and make sure what actually happened is reflected in the reports. There will be no “He said, she said” when you have it on video. This ability will also allow you to make sure they don’t add to the losses. Does the central station respond quickly? How long did it take for them to turn in the alarm? You will have total verification of everything. Did your employee arrive promptly? Also, if you are getting false alarms, you will be able to see if there was something going on environmentally that can cause a false alarm. A storm, lightning, heavy winds, rats are a few things that don’t show up when your service tech arrives. This can save a lot of grief and return calls.

What do you do when you are at home and your alarm company calls to say your fire alarm has gone off? First off, you can connect your fire alarm control panel to your recorder like your burglar alarm panel, allowing you to be immediately notified of the alarm. Then you can go on line and see what is happening at your premise. A real fire? Head on down. False alarm? You will have a head start in tracing out the point of origin. How are the responders handling the alarm? Really doing their jobs or having a party? And you can even monitor the repairman while he is doing his trouble shooting.

Using the remote control relay outputs on the recorder can allow you to do all kinds of interesting things. Have an electric gate out front? You can go online on your way home and open it before you get in the driveway, also making sure nobody is lurking around waiting for your arrival. If there is, you can use a second relay output to trigger a siren to frighten them off.

Do you have an access control system? Well, your video system can act like one. No, you can’t control 14 doors, but you can control one with your DVR. A person wanting access can call you, you verify who they are, and open the door for them. You will also have video evidence of who they were and when they arrived, when they left and what they did while they were there. You can connect a motion detector to the alarm input. The recorder will trip the alarm relay output which can both open the door automatically and notify you.

Even simple duties, like turning lights off and on remotely, to make your house look more lived in. Also, most of our recorders support audio, so you can listen in to what is going on.

I have even been told of people using these outputs to open and close powered window blinds.

Virtually any electrical device can be connected and controlled this way.

These techniques take a device that is normally considered a passive, reactive device and transform it into an active, proactive tool. Instead of just telling you what had happened, it allows you become involved directly in the activities. This is a huge step forward in security for your home and businesses. Keep in mind that these notifications go directly to you, not to a third party that then calls you. Or doesn’t. Have important equipment that has to be working all the time? You can monitor it constantly. Freezer with expensive food products? Temperature alarm connected to the recorder. You can correct the problem before expensive damage occurs. Back in the day, I had a client that coated heavy oil pipeline pipes with tar. The tar tanks had to maintain a high temp constantly or it would take days to reheat that tank, effectively closing down their operation. Problem solved. Many clients needed refrigeration equipment monitored. No problem, and the recorder can even allow you to SEE what is happening. You can even put a camera watching the thermometers. You have such total control of the situation. How long did the service tech take to get there? He billed you for 3 hours – did he actually take that long or was he playing video games on his phone? Told you he got there at 2:00AM but you don’t see him until 3:00AM? You can correct that immediately. Chances are quite good that he will not over bill you again.

Like many other tools, the applications are only limited by your imagination.

If you have a situation that requires monitoring, but you are not sure if or how you can accomplish that, give us a call. Our techs will give you options for the most effective ways for you to attain that control. Eliminating the third party response will cut down on the amount of delay in getting notification, and will guarantee that you get your message quickly and more accurately.

Control is a concept that we all want more of in our lives. Taking a tool that we think of as just being a way to see what happened and turning it into a very useful tool that gives us a greater degree of control over our lives is a very nice form of unexpected consequences. Many interesting ideas that can be implemented to your advantage, all at basically no cost over the CCTV system you already have and use. Giving you many surprising benefits that will improve your control over your life.

If you think of any other possible uses for this technology, please forward to me, so we can share with the others.

Thank you for your time and interest.


Using Your Security DVR or NVR for Automation

Written By:
Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014
8 Channel LT Mini

When it comes to home security there are many options out there.  When I was looking for a DVR I wanted a full featured DVR in a small package.  I came across the Techpro Ultimate MiniSeries DVR, this little unit is full featured and is great for automation as well.  It offers D1 realtime resolution on all channels, Dual Core processors, dual hard drive bays, alarm inputs and outputs, audio inputs, capable of two way audio, can handle up to four monitors, has a three year warranty, lifetime technical support, and free remote viewing apps for iPhone, Android, iPad, and Tablets.  There is not much this little machine cannot do especially when it comes to automation.

There are many reasons to why I like this unit. First is for the high quality analog recordings it can do.  D1 resolution at thirty frames per second.  This is a huge thing for me because when most systems record at D1 resolution they are not able to record at thirty frames per second on all channels, the most I was finding was fifteen frames per second on all channels.  With the thirty frames per second I know that no matter what is happening I am going to catch it and the recorded video does not look robotic.  The second biggest reason that I like this little machine is that it can handle two different hard disk drives, so that I can either extend the amount of time the machine can record or I can run the RAID configuration so I will always have a backup of the events even if one of the hard drives fail.

The two way audio capabilities of the Ultimate Mini DVR is fantastic for the application that I use it.  I have set up an old stereo that I had laying around to accept the audio outputs from the DVR and utilize it’s amplification to output the audio source from the DVR and relay it to some outdoor loudspeakers that I have installed.

8 Channel LT Mini Audio

This may sound crazy, but it has come in very handy in the past.  I can use the TechproSS application on my phone and speak through the DVR to those speakers.  This type of application could be used for many of things.  It is not however an intercom system, so whatever speakers are connected to it will have the sound come out of them.  For instance, if you had an office environment and you wanted to be able to communicate back and forth with someone, anyone else who has the speakers installed near them would hear part of the conversation.  But, it will work great if you have like a warehouse or yard and you wanted to announce something it would be able to handle that.   Now keep in mind that if you have microphones attached to the unit and are utilizing the audio out, if you have the channel selected with the microphone input, it will be broadcast through the speakers that are attached to the DVR.

8 Channel LT Mini IN.OUT

One of the best things about this unit is the alarm inputs and outputs.  Most people will think that I am crazy, but I can utilize these functions to do numerous different applications.  One of the functions that I can do is utilize one of the alarm outputs to trigger something.  I use one of mine to be able to open my garage door from anywhere that I have an internet connection.  I also use one of them to trigger an alarm siren on my house.  I use another one to turn on and off a light at my house.  They really can be used for almost anything you can imagine.  I have known of customers who have utilized the outputs to open gates, release Mag Lock doors, open blinds, and many other things.

There are a couple of things you will need to accomplish these things.  First you will need a relay coming from the alarm output.  The relay that I use and know works is an ELK-912. The reason that I like this relay so much is that it can handle multiple different types of power sources.  You will need some extra wire to connect the relay to the DVR and the device it will be controlling. If you are using this for turning on lights, I suggest you consult an electrician to help you not cause an electrical short or other problems.  You will want to follow the instructions that come with whatever relay you decide to use.  I am going to explain how I use the ELK-912 relay.  There are several different ways to accomplish the same result.  The first thing that you will do is to connect the positive wire from the device you are trying to activate to the Normally Open (N/O) on the relay.  You will then connect the negative from the device to the negative of whatever power supply you are using.  Then you will connect the common port on the relay to the positive of your power supply.  Next connect a cable from the negative of the power source to the negative of the relay.  You will then connect a cable from the positive terminal of the relay to the Normally Open (N/O) of the alarm output on the DVR.  The last cable that you will need to connect is from the Common Port of the DVR to the positive of your power source.

Now that you have your device connected to your DVR there are several different ways that you can activate it to test and see if it works.  The easiest method is to use the TechproSS Plus application on your phone or tablet.  Once you have at least one camera selected in the Live Preview, you will see a triangle on the bottom right of the screen with an exclamation point in it.  You will select this icon and another set of options will pop up, these are your alarm outputs.  You will select the check mark next to the alarm output that you want to activate.  If you have done it properly you will either have your garage door open, gate open, siren activate, light turn on, or whatever you attached to this output.

Screen Shot 2014-01-14 at 5.07.33 PM

Another cool thing that you can do is to use the alarm inputs to trigger the alarm outputs to do something.  For example if you wanted your lights to come on automatically when you walk into a room, you could take an alarm motion sensor and have it connected to the alarm input of the DVR, have the lights for that room or area connected to the alarm output.  The input would then trigger the output to respond.  I use this type of setup at my front door, so whenever someone crosses my motion detector my siren goes off.

This is typically a little extreme, except we never use our front door for anything.  I also use this setup for a room in my house that we rarely ever go into, but when we do the lights automatically turn on when the motion sensor is activated.

The options of what the inputs and outputs on the back of the DVRs can be used for are virtually infinite.  I have only briefly explained some of the ways that I have used them, but I know there are people out there with imaginations that I could never compare to.  No matter what way you decided to use these, I know you will have fun.