Posts Tagged ‘ cameras ’

Home Video Surveillance

Monday, March 14th, 2011

In this day and age home video surveillance is becoming more of a necessity than an accessory.  Digital video security and surveillance systems are very affordable and meet just about any budget.  In addition, the systems are easy to install and do not require installation by a professional.

Not too long ago, home video surveillance was a luxury that only the incredibly wealthy could afford.  That’s because the cameras and recording machinery were expensive; it normally required a licensed contractor or professional to install the system, and remote monitoring-if it could be done at all, was also expensive.

These were the times when cameras worked on the basis of the analog format only and video recorders were usually tape formats of either Beta or VHS formats.  If one could afford remote monitoring, it was normally done by sending the system’s signal via radio frequency to a nearby monitoring station, which also was expensive.

However, in the late 1990’s to the turn of the century, the digital age had spawned the Digital Video Recorder or DVR.  The DVR was used for many applications including recording television shows from cable or satellite subscribers.  There were many advantages to digital recording as compared to its analog tape counterpart.  One major difference is that the digital recording does not degrade over time like a VHS or Beta Tape.  In addition, instead of using “looping” recording tapes, DVR’s could just start recording over on their hard disk drives.

As we “fast-forward” our account of the video security industry there have been several additional changes that have made home video surveillance more of a commonplace item than a rarity.  Technological advances in electronics as well as computers have yielded powerful, smaller, and more efficient security components such as cameras, microphones, and monitors.

Today’s digital video security and surveillance system is more apt to be a component system.  That is, individual pieces work and coordinate together to produce the outcome of the total system, much like the different peripheral devices of a computer.  This has definitely proven itself advantageous for home video surveillance.  Now homeowners can design systems with specific requirements and meet those needs using different components.  In essence, the age of the “tailor made” or “individualized” home video surveillance system is here.

A typical home video surveillance system consists of three separate components; the cameras, the DVR and the monitors.  Modern digital video surveillance systems don’t even necessarily require a monitor except to set the system up.  However, the monitor is still probably the most widely used component of the system but may become not nearly as important in the future.

This is because more digital systems are becoming Internet compatible.  For example, each of the feature DVRs offered by Security Camera King have built in Web server technology.  That means that once connected to the Internet one or more users can control and view the home video surveillance system remotely, either from another Internet connected computer or a smart phone.  Therefore, the use of a local system monitor is slowly becoming limited.

For that matter, with an increase in technology, newer features and improvements are being regularly added at astoundingly economical costs.  Home video surveillance requires cameras of course, to gather the image (in the digital world this is referred to as “capturing).  The digital video camera features available today seem almost limitless.  Here’s a short list of just some of the features offered for digital video cameras:

  • Infrared based total darkness video capture;
  • Motion Detection;
  • Pan-Tilt-Zoom or PTZ camera movements;
  • Wireless equipment; and,
  • Internet Protocol or IP ready cameras that connect directly to the Internet.

There are as many features available for DVRs as there are uses.  The following is a very short list of the many features offered for DVRs:

  • IP ready DVRs;
  • Motion Detection at the DVR level;
  • Pentaplex operation ( the ability to simultaneously monitor, record, playback, network, and backup);
  • Email notification alerts;
  • Burglar alarm sensor inputs and alarm devices outputs;
  • High resolution recording with high definition playback;
  • Two way voice support; and
  • The ability to add additional internal hard disk drives, CD/DVD writers, external Thumb drives, SD cards and other peripherals.

These are just a few of the features that are offered by today’s home video surveillance systems.  If you are interested in purchasing a system or would like to inquire about one or any of its features, contact Security Camera King today.


Security Camera Monitor

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

The security camera monitor is probably considered one of the most important components of a digital video security system.  Yet, it is not purchased as often as other components like cameras and Digital Video Recorders (DVRs) and today’s systems can actually run without one.  In fact, Security Camera King takes pride in offering a complete digital video security package that includes the cameras, cables, connectors, power supply, and DVR but no monitor.  Why is that?  Read on to find out why, and to learn some other interesting facts about the security camera monitor.

There are three types of security camera monitors based on how they are used.  The first is a set-up monitor.  This monitor is only used when the system is first installed or any future changes are made to the system.  It may come in a variety of styles and sizes.  Security Camera King offers, for example, our product number VX-WLCDM, a 2.5 inch LCD service monitor with a wrist strap.

Use this monitor to aim cameras, choose settings on the DVR, and check connections.  Once the system is set up or the changes are made, the monitor is usually disconnected from the system.

The second type of security camera monitor is called the “spot monitor.”  A spot monitor is usually a monitor that is connected to just one camera.  It allows the user to specifically monitor full-time that one area of the security system that the specific camera covers.  The monitor maybe located in close vicinity of the camera it is monitoring or may be located in another location, whichever is most appropriate for the user.

If the spot monitor is used on a “cabled” system, there must be a separate cable run to the spot monitor in addition to the DVR.  This is usually accomplished by adding a splitter to the cable at some point to create a feed to the spot monitor and another to the DVR input.

The third type of security camera monitor is the system or main monitor.  This monitor is generally connected to the DVR by one or more cables and displays the on-screen information of the cameras and the DVR.  Usually this monitor is bigger in size than a spot monitor so that it can accommodate the simultaneous displaying of all or groups of cameras in the system at the same time.

Security camera monitors are like televisions (or perhaps more like personal computer monitors) in composition.  There are basically two types of monitors that are used today, but generally there is only one type that is used the most often.  The two types based on composition are the CRT and LCD monitors.

The CRT or Cathode Ray Tube monitor is the oldest type.  As its name implies it consists of a Cathode Ray Tube that produces the picture.  The CRT monitor is bulkier, heavier, and produces a lower resolution picture than the LCD monitor; basically, its equivalent to the older models of televisions that also used a CRT.  These monitors are still used today, but usually in older systems or as spot monitors.

The LCD or Liquid Crystal Display security camera monitor is probably the single most popular monitor type in use today.  It is much lighter than the CRT, it uses less energy, and displays at a much higher resolution and color, capable of providing quality high definition displays.  These monitors were once limited in size, but as technology advances so do the available sizes.  Security Camera King offers monitors as large as 42 inches.

A monitor is required to initially set-up a system.  However, all systems do not necessarily have system monitors.  The reason for is because once the system is set up it can record and function automatically.  More often however, users have personal computer systems or older monitors from computer systems in which the system is outdated but the monitor is still useful.  Then again, many users opt to connect their systems to the Internet and use any computer system’s monitor or even a Smartphone instead.

One last note; if you are considering purchasing a security camera monitor, regardless of the type, make sure the monitor has the proper connection input type available.  Our DVRs have HDMI, VGA, and BNC connections to make connecting the monitor an easy process for you.  However, many monitors, especially those once used for computers, only have a VGA connection for example.  So be certain to make sure your monitors, camera and DVR display types, and connectors match.


Small Business Security Systems

Monday, February 28th, 2011

Security Camera King offers a well rounded selection of digital video small business security systems.  These systems can provide protection, deter illegal activity, and document any vandalism, theft, or other activity in high-quality color full motion video.  The systems are easy to operate, easy to set up, and easy enough to install yourself if you so desire.

Any business needs security protection, regardless of how big or small the business may be.  Of course, if the business is large enough, it may even have its own security department or security team.  Another option would include contracting the security to an independent security and protection agency.  However, small businesses, especially those that are in the beginning stages of their development, can’t afford these options.

Yet security is still a definite necessity to protect the interests of the business, its property, and its employees.  What is the solution?  Small business security systems can fit this need at a small business overhead price while providing big business security advantages.

Security Camera King offers four different small business security systems based on the number of cameras or channels in each system.  We carry 4, 8, 16, and 32 channel digital video systems.  Each system comes with the designated number of vandal-proof day/night infrared vision dome cameras, the necessary power supply for the cameras, cables, connectors, and of course a Digital Video Recorder or DVR.

Our 4, 8, and 16 channel small business security systems are further divided into three major groups each, depending on the type of DVR selected.  We offer the Elite Mini, the Elite, and the Ultimate brand DVRs.  For any one of these channel groups we actually offer 6 different system packages.  For example, for a four channel system we offer two system packages for the Elite Mini, two for the Elite, and Two for the Ultimate.

The differences between small business security systems packages with the same DVR type are cable and power supplies.  For the complete Four Channel Elite Mini HD DVR Security Camera Surveillance Packages we offer one package that includes a four channel space saving power supply with four plug and play cables.  Our second Four Channel Elite Mini HD DVR package includes the same DVR and cameras, but instead offers a four channel power distribution box, one box of bulk RG-59 18/2 Siamese Cable, four power leads, and connectors.

Each of our DVRs comes with an astounding variety of standard features.  The major difference between our Elite Mini and the Elite and Ultimate DVRs, is that the Elite Mini does not have a CD/DVD writer.  However all of our DVRs provide High Definition Outputs, the latest and most efficient CODEC (COmpression/DECompression) utility, H.264, built in Web server, email alerts, and Smartphone accessible technology.

The Internet options are especially helpful in small business security systems because many small business owners like the opportunity to monitor their systems remotely while they are conducting other business related tasks or even while they are on vacation.  You can use the Web browser access from your home computer to view each of your small business security system’s digital cameras and if you are on the road, anywhere in the world that Internet access is available via a Smartphone, you can view and even control your system via your phone using one of our free applications.

Although the Elite Mini does not have a CD/DVD writer, it does allow you to make backup copies using a USB thumb drive.  The Elite and Ultimate DVRs provide a CD/DVD writer for you to use to back-up your recorded footage or copy specific portions of it to distributable media to give to police, insurance companies, etc.

Security Camera King also recognizes that every small business has its own specific security requirements.  That’s why we offer our systems with component changes and upgrades (some may be an additional charge).  This provides you with the opportunity to purchase a complete system, tailored to your specific security needs, at a reasonable discounted packaged system price.

Since you can actually save costs for your small business by installing your own small business security system we also provide support from the beginning to the end of the process.  Our systems are easy to install and come with all the manuals for the components that describe hook-ups, features, set-up procedures, etc. but we realize that may not always be enough.  That’s why we offer free complete support from design of your system through installation, setup, and use.


Wireless IP Security Camera

Tuesday, January 25th, 2011

One of the more recent digital video security camera system components is the wireless IP security camera. These cameras use the Internet as a network medium for the purpose of transmitting their digital video images and for allowing the user to control the camera remotely. This places the maximum power of remote accessibility as well as easy installation in the hands of the user.

It seems as if all of our electronic devices today utilize or have some sort of affiliation with, the Internet. So why shouldn’t the digital video security industry take advantage of its seemingly ubiquitous presence and cost-efficient use as well? That’s exactly what a wireless IP (Internet Protocol ready) security camera does.

By using a wireless IP security camera you can monitor your business in Ft. Lauderdale while on vacation in Tokyo. If you have a Pan-Tilt-Zoom or PTZ wireless IP security camera you can even control the camera from Tokyo moving the camera horizontally, vertically, or even zooming in on an object. You can do all this anywhere there is a broadband Internet connection and an available desktop or laptop computer and even using a 3G or 4G smartphone.

How is this possible? In the following article we’ll discuss what’s inside a wireless IP security camera and how it works, especially with the internet.

A wireless IP security camera differs from a typical digital video camera in several ways. First, a standard digital video security camera is connected to a processing and storage unit called a Digital Video Recorder or DVR. The camera is normally connected to the unit by running an RG-59 coaxial video transmission cable from each camera to the DVR. The camera transmits its video data over the cable to the DVR where it is compiled into a digital video file that is stored on a hard disk drive and may be viewed live on a digital camera security monitor at the same time.

On the other hand, a wireless IP security camera doesn’t use an RG-59 coaxial video transmission cable or any other video transmission cable. This camera has a built-in transmitter that sends its signal using IEEE802.11 or WiFi radio technology. The camera may or may not, depending on the type, also process the video data into a digital video file before being transmitted from the camera. In addition, when the signal leaves a wireless IP security camera it may be sent to an IP ready DVR over the internet, or it can be sent to any other receiving device (such as a computer or smartphone).

A wireless IP security camera also has its own built in web server technology. This allows one camera to capture video, create digital video files, and send them (using streaming technology) over the Internet to a variety of devices already mentioned. Accessing the camera is as easy as opening a standard web browser on your computer and entering the camera’s Internet address and a password. Even smartphones and similar devices such as iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Symbian, and Windows mobile phones can remotely view and control the camera as well.

It’s important to note that a wireless IP security camera and an IP DVR system are different. The IP security camera makes a direct connection to the Internet via a wireless broadband modem or router. An IP DVR system on the other hand uses various wireless technologies to connect the cameras to the DVR FIRST. The DVR is than connected to the Internet via a variety of broadband Internet connections.

Note: For IP DVRs smartphones will require an application (app). For the iPhone and similar devices the application is available for free from the iPhone App Store on your phone. For all other types, Security Camera King offers the app for free when you download it from their website. As an additional note, please remember that the app only works with Security Camera Kings Elite Mini, Elite, and Ultimate DVRs with HDMI output. It will not work with any other type of DVR or any of Security Camera Kings DVRs.

Ultimately then, a wireless IP security camera can use the Internet to send digital video images to a variety of computers and smartphones or it can utilize the Internet as a network medium to connect several cameras to an IP ready DVR.

If you have any additional questions about a wireless IP security camera contact one of our security experts via “Live Chat” or telephone today.


CCTV Digital Video Recorder

Wednesday, November 10th, 2010

A closed circuit television or CCTV digital video recorder can provide the security and/or surveillance you need for your home, office, business, or industrial setting. For residential applications, a CCTV digital video recorder can protect your home and give you the peace of mind even when you are away of knowing that things are secure. For commercial applications, nothing provides cost effective security and surveillance as well as documentation than a CCTV digital video recorder.

What exactly is a CCTV digital video recorder? A CCTV digital video recorder is any device that can save and store digital video data, usually in the form of a digital video file that can be retrieved, copied, and played back through a monitor at some later time.

Security and surveillance type cameras first got the name Closed Circuit Television or CCTV to differentiate them from television cameras. The original security and surveillance type video camera was basically just a smaller version of the video camera television studios used to record television shows such as variety shows, sitcoms, dramas, and news reports. Television cameras were attached to transmitters that broadcast the signal over vast areas so that anyone with a television (in essence a receiver and monitor) could monitor the signal.

CCTV was used in reference to video cameras that were each connected to a video recorder. Each camera has a video transmission cable, usually a coaxial type RG-59 cable, which runs from the camera to the recording unit and monitor. The only way to receive the camera’s signal was to be in a closed circuit with it via the video transmission cable. Since these cameras didn’t broadcast their video signals publicly, they were called Closed Circuit Television or CCTV.

Today, CCTV is used a little more loosely, too mean a designated system of cameras, receivers, and recorders not intended for public broadcasting. For example, individual digital video cameras today can transmit their video signals via radio signals to receivers or Digital Video Recorders or DVRs. Although it may be possible for someone to intercept the signal, it is not intended for public broadcasting and in effect, is a closed circuit type of television.

In the security camera industry, a CCTV digital video recorder is usually thought of as one of three integral components in a digital video security system. The other two are the digital video camera(s) and an LCD monitor. For residential or commercial standalone digital video CCTV systems, the DVR is basically the equivalent of a personal computer hard disk drive connected to a high specialized type of computer processor called a Digital Signal Processor or DSP.

On these units, the CCTV digital video recorder unit is still connected to each individual camera in the system; however, as mentioned earlier they may now be connected by a specific radio signal transmission. The DSP interprets the digital data sent to it by each digital video camera and then creates a digital video file. Unprocessed digital video files can become extremely large in a very short period of recording time, so the DSP usually applies some sort of COmpression/DECompression or CODEC utility. This CODEC utility processed the digital data in such a way as to greatly reduce the size of the file while still maintaining high video quality.

Standalone CCTV digital video recorders do not require any additional equipment (such as a computer) for processing or storing the video, hence the name “standalone.” The actual DVR is the same sort of device used for a personal computer’s hard disk drive. As a result, the benefits of advanced computer technology and storage features have been passed on from the computer industry to the security camera industry in regard to the DVR.

These standalone CCTV DVRs today normally have storage capacities that range from 250 gigabytes to over 1 Terabyte. This coupled with modern CODEC utilities this translates to longer periods between overwrites when a disk becomes full and even greater capacity to store multiple cameras at once.

In addition to magnetic disk drives, CCTV digital video recorders may be in other formats as well. Although the hard disk drive is probably the fastest, cost-effective method for storing standalone system digital video, small portable units are becoming popular as well. These units may use any of the portable memory card media (such as Compact Flash, SD, etc.) or even Flash Thumb drives as the storage media of choice.