Posts Tagged ‘ best security camera systems ’

The Difference Between CIF and 4CIF Resolution

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Tuesday, May 28th, 2013

Many people mistakenly think that all security cameras and digital video recorders are the same, but this simply isn’t the truth. Some recorders offer a much better video quality than others, such as digital video recorders that will record in 4CIF resolution instead of the more typical CIF resolution. Although there is certainly nothing wrong with having a digital video recorder and accompanying system that captures your surveillance footage in regular CIF resolution, 4CIF resolution is definitely something that you should consider learning more about if you take safety and security seriously.

What is CIF Resolution?
When you think about things like security camera footage and even video conferencing, CIF resolution is probably what you think about, even if you don’t know it. CIF, which is also known as Common Intermediate Format or Full Common Intermediate Format, is the standard format that is used to transform pixels captured by video cameras into a resolution that you can actually watch. First proposed in the standard of H.261, this format can be easily converted to both NTSC and PAL standards. This format is pretty common and is probably what you have if you have a security camera system installed in your home or business.

What is 4CIF Resolution?
4CIF resolution is another type of CIF resolution that is considered to be superior to the more traditional format. Surveillance camera systems that utilize 4CIF technology capture footage in 704×480 resolution instead of 360×240, which is standard for CIF resolutions.

What Makes 4CIF Resolution Superior?
The thing to remember when looking at resolution quality for your surveillance camera is that you want to be able to see all of your footage in the best possible quality. A resolution that is blurry or far away can make it difficult to distinguish certain things in your footage, such as making out faces, license plate numbers and other details. 4CIF resolution offers a much larger and more clear picture, however, which makes it easier to make these things out when you are watching the surveillance footage from all of your security cameras.

Why is the Type of Resolution Important?
Although you might think that one resolution is almost as good as the other, you should know that how well you can see things in your surveillance camera footage can make the difference between spotting something suspicious and not seeing it at all or getting important, identifying details and factors and not being able to make out a thing. This is the main reason why screen resolution is important.

Even though you probably don’t want to think about being put in a situation where seeing these factors is important, you should know that that is the main purpose of having a surveillance camera system in place at all. If you aren’t recording in the highest possible resolution, you aren’t taking full advantage of the safety and security that a good surveillance camera system can provide you with. This means that you might not be able to use your footage for what you probably record it for, which is catching suspicious things that go on in and around your home or business or providing local law enforcement officers with proof that can help them find and convict the person who has committed some sort of crime on your residential or commercial property.

Should You Switch to 4CIF Resolution?
If your digital video recorder is capturing and recording your surveillance footage in CIF resolution, you should definitely consider doing what you can in order to make the switch to a sharper and better resolution. Although you might have to invest in some relatively costly equipment in order to do so, you are sure to find the purchase worthwhile when you have clear and crisp surveillance footage of something that has gone on at your home or business.

If you can’t afford to make the switch, however, you shouldn’t worry right away. Having a good system in place that captures surveillance footage in CIF resolution is certainly better than not having a security camera system in place at all, and you can always plan on making the switch in the future. However, it is definitely something that you should keep in mind if you think you will have the cash on hand to replace your digital video recorder with a better one later on, and you should absolutely look for a good digital video recorder that can capture surveillance camera footage in 4CIF resolution if you find yourself looking for a new DVR system sometime in the near future.

How Do You Switch to 4CIF Resolution?
The truth is that you might be able to switch your current digital video recorder to 4CIF resolution without purchasing any additional equipment. However, you should know that just because a DVR system claims to have this capability doesn’t mean that it’s really set up to capture footage in this resolution well.

For instance, some digital video recorders will allow you to switch to 4CIF resolution, but the camera footage can be compromised in other ways. If your camera captures CIF resolution in 30 frames per second, for example, it might have to reduce to something as low as seven or eight frames per second if you switch it to 4CIF resolution. Although this might work for certain security cameras in certain places, it can be risky to switch all of your cameras to this type of resolution and frame rate because you can actually miss out on a lot of footage if your frame-per-second rate is too low.

Luckily, there are digital video recorders out there that make the switch to 4CIF resolution much easier, and you might want to choose to switch to one of these systems if you want the best and clearest possible surveillance footage on your system. These systems will actually capture, record, store and replay surveillance footage in 4CIF resolution at a shockingly high frame rate of 30 frames per second, the same frame rate that many digital video recorders capture in CIF resolution. This means that you won’t have to worry about missing out on a single face or detail while watching your footage, and you don’t have to worry about missing out on things entirely just because the rfame rate on your digital video recorder is too low.

In order to make this switch, you should look for a digital video recorder with an impressive frame rate and that utilizes 4CIF technology. If possible, you will probably want to look for a DVR system that will work with your existing cameras so that you don’t have to worry about replacing every single component of your system, and doing so might be easier and much cheaper than you think. There are only a few good digital video recorders on the market that offer this type of technology, but the search for them will be worth it when you end up with a DVR system that captures the best possible footage from all of your security cameras. If you are unsure if the model that you are looking at offers the type of technology and the high-quality footage and resolution that you want, don’t be afraid to compare different models or to ask someone who is experienced in such matters. Taking the time to do this will help ensure that you end up with the digital video recorder system that offers the best picture and that you don’t end up with the wrong system that doesn’t really provide you with the quality that you need.

Also, make sure that you look at the other features of each digital video recorder before you make your purchase. Not only do you want to look for 4CIF resolution capabilities and a fast frame rate, but you should also look for things like external storage capabilities and more; this will help you enjoy the best possible experience with your digital video recorder system, and it will help ensure that it is there with all of the features and capabilities that you need when you need it the most.

What if You Don’t Switch to 4CIF Resolution?
Just because your DVR doesn’t offer 4CIF resolution doesn’t mean that you should give up on it completely. People have been relying on security camera systems and digital video recorders with regular CIF resolution for years now, and you can still capture good video surveillance footage in this resolution. Therefore, if you can’t afford to make the switch right now, you should know that you can probably still count on your older DVR model to provide you with the surveillance footage that you need in certain situations.

However, you can’t discredit the superiority of 4CIF resolution, so it is certainly something that you should consider if you can afford to switch to another DVR system. By shopping with the right security equipment company, you might be able to make this switch more affordably than you think, and you are sure to find it worthwhile to do so when you are watching your surveillance footage in a higher and better resolution and in a much higher visual quality.

How to Choose a Company to Purchase Your New DVR Equipment From
If you have decided to make the switch to a new digital video recorder so that you can enjoy your surveillance footage in the new and much clearer 4CIF resolution, you probably want to do so as affordably as possible, and you probably also want to make sure that you are purchasing a digital video recorder that is of a high quality. Therefore, you should make sure that you are making the right decision when you choose the company that you will purchase your new equipment from.

Luckily, there are a few things to look for when you are looking for a good company that sells security cameras, digital video recorders and other related equipment. First of all, never make the mistake of purchasing your equipment from a mass market retail store that sells a wide variety of items. By doing so, you really might not end up with the best equipment, and you also won’t be able to count on the staff members to know what they are doing when you ask for advice. Instead, always shop with companies that specialize in selling security-related equipment and other similar items. Then, you will have a wider variety of digital video recorders and other equipment to choose from, and you will probably find higher-quality models. You can also count on working with staff members who actually know what they are talking about when it comes to security-related equipment, so you can get better advice about the equipment that you are looking to purchase.

Next, consider shopping online for your new digital video recorder if you are looking for a system that offers 4CIF resolution for your surveillance footage. By shopping online, you can often enjoy significant discounts over shopping in-store, and you can also enjoy the convenience of shopping when it’s best for you. Shopping for your digital video recorder online will also make it easy for you to compare different models, read reviews and more, making it a breeze to make a smart purchase.

Although making this switch might seem like a costly and frustrating venture, doing so will help you enjoy the maximum number of benefits from your surveillance camera system. When it comes to things like keeping your business secure and your home, family and possessions safe, few things in life are more important. By taking the time and making the minimal investment that you need in order to purchase a capable digital video recorder, you can feel confident in knowing that you are doing everything that you can to keep your home, family or business safe, and you can depend on your system to provide you with the clear footage and capabilities that you need when you need it the most.




How To Prevent Your Lock From Being Picked By a Burglar

Written By:
Tuesday, May 28th, 2013

How To Prevent Your Lock From Being Picked By a BurglarComing home to discover that your home has been broken into while you were away is one of the worst situations in the world. Many people fail to realize just how serious of a threat burglary is throughout the country. According to reports, more than two million burglaries have occurred throughout the United States. Even though there is no guarantee on whether your home is going to be broken into or not, you will want to do everything you can to ensure the property is safe and secure.

Windows and Doors Need to be Sturdy

One of the best things you can do to help prevent a burglary is to secure the property with doors and windows that are sturdy. Ensure your exterior doors are nice and heavy. Some of the best materials for your property are solid wood and metal. A flimsy glass door or wood door can be broken into with ease, which is only going to make your home more susceptible to a break in. Windows should have locks on them, but if they don’t, you will want to place a wooden dowel in them or some sort of track filler to help prevent the burglar from being able to open the window outside of the home. If you have a sliding glass door in your backyard, you will want to install one that has a secure locking mechanism and position a wooden dowel in the track to prevent it from being jimmied open.

Secure Your Home

Before leaving home, make sure that all of your doors and windows are securely shut. Deadbolt and lock all of the exterior doors to the home. Since deadbolts are one of the best ways to secure your home, you will have the peace of mind you need when leaving home. A burglar will not be able to break through a deadbolt with a crowbar or pick them open, which ensures the safety and security of your home. Any of the home improvement stores will sell deadbolts that can withstand a tremendous amount of pressure. You won’t have to worry about your doors being kicked in or someone trying to saw their way into your home with one of these units in place.

Another great means of securing your home is with that of security cameras. If you have a camera monitoring your property, you will know exactly when someone was around the area and trying to make his or her way inside of your home. Not only will you have the evidence you need to capture the perpetrator, but you will also have the peace of mind to know that your home is protected while you are away. When you have a security system installed, you will be able to watch the video feed from any Internet device. All you need to do is go to the IP address provided and you will be watching live feed. If you see someone lurking around, you can call the authorities immediately and catch them in the act.

Light The Exterior of Your Home

In the event you are going to be away from home, add some lighting to your property to help make it difficult for a burglar to try to remain hidden in the shadows. If you are going to be gone at night, leave a few lights on to help provide the impression that someone is home inside even when they are not. Motion sensor lighting is ideal for lighting up your home. They will activate when an animal or person sets the detector off, so it will always ensure no one can hide amongst the trees and bushes of your yard. Make sure to place them high out of reach to prevent a burglar from trying to break them and create a darkened area around a surrounding windows or door.

Depending on the situation, all it may take is a little deception to make the burglar think twice about trying to enter into your home. Purchase a timer that will trigger the lights at random times when you are planning to be away for a few hours. Not only will this help to deter the burglar, but also it will help confuse them as to whether your home is unprotected or not. If possible, leave a vehicle in the driveway to help add the illusion that someone is still at home. One of the other methods for deceiving burglars is to call your home phone, let it ring a few times and then hang up. The burglar will think that someone is there and answering the call, which helps deter him or her from trying to break into your home. If they think someone answered the phone, they are going to think twice about trying to make their way inside of the home.

Neighborhood Watch

To discourage crime effectively in the neighborhood where you live, a neighborhood watch program may be ideal. Develop various shifts of a few people that will monitor the neighborhood throughout the evening hours. The groups can take three-hour shifts to help ensure everyone gets their much-needed rest while still ensuring the safety of the neighborhood. You can also form a partnership with local authorities and ask them what forms of protection the watch members can carry. Everyone should carry a flashlight and cell phone with them to ensure he or she is protected while performing his or her watch duties.

Preventing a Burglar from Picking Your Lock

Beyond losing a number of your valuable items from a burglary, it can also cause you to lose your sense of security. The first step in protecting your home from a break in is to secure your front door. Installing good quality locks will help to convince a burglar to move on to a target that might be easier. Even though only a small portion of burglars gain entry into your home from picking a lock, it will help to put your mind at ease in knowing that you have an added layer of security in your home.

Beyond your primary lock, you will want to ensure you have a deadbolt lock installed. Since a deadbolt lock is a lot more resistant to someone trying to pick it than a traditional lock, the burglar would have to work twice as hard to get into your home.

Try upgrading your basic lock to a model that offers more enhanced security features. Look for locks that have a contoured shape for the internal pins or a side bar to help thwart any traditional lock-picking attempts on your home. You can also switch to one of the less common locks on the market, such as that of a dimple lock, tubular lock or rotating disc. All of these locks will require the burglar to have special tools to get through the lock, which most burglars are not going to carry with them.

Choose a lock that has ANSI Grade 1 classifications. These locks have the absolute highest designation of any locks found on the market today. For those who have these locks installed, they offer the absolute best in durability and security standards.

Ensure the lock is not vulnerable to someone who is trying to pick it. Even though it may take some time to pick a deadbolt, many burglars are well equipped to handle it with ease. Choose a lock that has a high security cylinder if possible. These locks will have a special pin inside of them, which cannot be picked using a standard tool. Even though they may be a little more costly in the beginning, they will help to ensure the safety of your home for years to come.

If you have a deadbolt lock that has a relatively short bolt, it will allow the door to be easily opened with a prying tool or crowbar. To help prevent someone from using one of these items to break into your home, you will want to ensure the deadbolt has at least a one-inch extension inside of your doorframe. Even though it may take longer to install the lock in your home, it will help increase your security level.

One of the manners in which a deadbolt may be vulnerable to potential burglars is when they are made from certain types of materials. Locks that are composed of a soft metal can be sawed through without a tremendous amount of effort on the part of the burglar. Many of the burglars today have equipped themselves with hacksaws to get through deadbolts that are lower in quality. To help prevent a burglar from making their way into your home, choose locks that are made of a steel material.

Depending on the type of deadbolt you purchase, the cylinder guard is easily infiltrated by being removed with a standard wrench. If you end up purchasing a deadbolt that has a tapered cylinder, it cannot be easily removed with a wrench. For those who want an added layer of security, you can opt for a lock with a free-spinning cylinder, which is a lot more difficult to remove with a wrench.

Consider the price you want to spend on your new lock. Depending on what it is that you want to spend, you may have to sacrifice spending more money for the sake of enhanced quality. Locks are an integral component of any security system, so you want to do everything you can to ensure they are going to do their part for you. Even though you may not think it is necessary to spend a large amount of money on a lock, it will help to add an extra layer of protection for your home and everything you hold dear on the inside of it.

Make your environment less inviting for any would be intruders. Ensure your front doors are easily visible from the street. Remove any statues or plants from around your door to help provide an unobstructed view. Trim any bushes or hedges that border the walkway to the entrance of your home. Position a strong light throughout the evening hours to help cast an illumination upon anyone who is trying to make his or her way into your home.

Even though you may not be able to guarantee that someone will not still try to make his or her way into your home, you can do your part to ensure everything is protected to the fullest. Beyond just enhancing the type of lock you have on your home, lighting, security systems  and other mechanisms play an important role to the safety of your home. You are in complete control of everything you do around your home, so make sure to choose products that will help to protect your home and prevent entry. The last thing you want to do is come home to find your home trashed and belongings missing because of a would be burglar.

Most of the time, a burglar will proceed elsewhere if they are having problems getting into the home. They also do not want to proceed with breaking into a home that has a security camera in place. Burglars want to get into and out of the property as quickly and efficiently as possible. The last thing they want is to be caught on tape in the act. A burglar’s goal is to take everything they can as quickly as they can and move on to the next target. Getting captured on tape ruins the entire plan, so they will tend to avoid homes that have security cameras in place. Make sure to choose something that is going to work for your individual needs. Plenty of different cameras are on the market, so choose one that is going to protect your property and fit into your budget at the same time. Soon enough you will have the peace of mind that you desire when leaving your home unattended.