Posts Tagged ‘ DSP’



IP Camera and DVR

Written By:
Friday, February 4th, 2011

IP Camera and DVRIt’s been said that someday almost every electronic appliance will be tied to the Internet; so enters the IP camera and DVR. Don’t take this the wrong way, this is definitely a good thing for the digital video security and surveillance system industry. Providing digital video systems with a mechanism to connect to the Internet places the power of versatility and omnipresence in the user’s hand. But what exactly does IP mean and how do these devices work? We’ll try to answer these questions in the following article.

Let’s begin by distinguishing between the components of a digital video security camera system. First, the system must have at least one camera and if it is DVR dependent, a maximum of sixteen cameras per DVR. Speaking of which, a DVR or Digital Video Recorder, is the device that contains the hard disk drive to store the digital video files created from the data provided by the cameras. This unit contains a Digital Signal Processor or DSP the compiles the cameras’ video data and created a digital video file from it that can be stored on the DVRs hard disk drive for later use or displayed on the system’s monitor in real-time (live).

In a non-IP system, the digital video camera transmits its video data over a video transmission cable that must be run from each camera to the DVR, or wirelessly by using a built-in transmitter to send the signals via radio waves to a corresponding receiver or a DVR with a built in receiver.

However, an IP camera and DVR work a little differently. First we should define what we mean by “IP.” An IP camera and DVR are digital video component devices that are “Internet Protocol” or IP ready. This means that these devices contain the either the hardwiring or software necessary to make them compatible with and to be connected to, the Internet.

Furthermore, we should also distinguish the difference between an IP camera and DVR. An IP camera can run entirely separately, that is without the need for a DVR or it may also connect to a DVR if that is desired. In addition, an IP DVR is able to connect to the Internet, and the entire digital video security system can be run via its connection.

An IP camera has built in web server technology so that it can connect directly to the Internet. It usually does this in one of three ways either using a Cat 5 Ethernet type cable or wirelessly to a broadband wireless modem or router. Once the IP camera has established its connection to the Internet it can use the Internet as the vehicle for networking. This has one tremendously powerful implication; you can monitor and operate your IP camera from anywhere in the world there is broadband Internet access.

The IP camera can be used as just a simple monitor without recording video. The IP camera can be monitored on any computer or smartphone connected to a broadband Internet connection. Its video images can also be saved on an Internet-connected computer. Further, an IP camera can also send its video images via the Internet to a remotely located DVR that is connected to the Internet.

An IP DVR system is slightly different. In this system the DVR contains the circuitry or software to connect to the Internet. The cameras in this system normally connect directly to the DVR using conventional digital video security system methods. Once the Internet connection is established, any of the cameras connected to the DVR may be monitored or controlled via the Internet connection. Once again, the system can be controlled (including the individual cameras) anywhere in the world there is broad band Internet access.

Speaking of control, an IP camera and DVR can be controlled remotely by computer by just using a common Internet browser such as Internet Explore, Safari, etc. Smartphone devices use mini-software programs called “applications” or simply “apps.” The apps programs are downloaded to the device and installed on the device. Once installed, the device is ready to control/monitor the IP camera and DVR.

Security Camera King offers a variety of different IP cameras and DVRs. Check out our “Network IP Security Cameras” section located under the “Security Camera” bar on the left hand side of our web page. Also, each of Security Camera Kings feature DVR systems, the Elite Mini, Elite, and Ultimate are ready to be connected to the Internet “out of the box.”

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Digital Surveillance Software

Written By:
Wednesday, February 2nd, 2011

The term “digital surveillance software” refers to a broad category of computer based sets of instructions that provides the instructions for either a computer or a computer based device to operate, control, and/or process binary (digital) data used or created for security and surveillance purposes. To narrow this definition down a little for the purpose of this article, digital surveillance software is the collective set of programming used to create digital video images for security and surveillance purposes.

Since the words “digital surveillance software” refer to such a broad definition, it may be easier to explain what it is based on how it is used and what it does. There are basically three broad categories of digital surveillance software. The first applies to standalone digital video security and surveillance systems; the second applies to personal computer based digital video security and surveillance systems; and the third and final category, for the purpose of our discussion, applies to smartphones and similar type devices used with digital video and surveillance software.

Standalone Digital Video Security Systems
A standalone digital video security system is a set of devices that are used for security or surveillance purposes to create digital video files that may or may not be recorded. The term “standalone” indicates that these systems do not require any additional assistance from exterior devices such as a computer. The digital surveillance software used in these systems can include the operating system of the Digital Video Recorder’s or DVR’s and any additional programs used on that system to control the various devices of the standalone system

A standalone digital video security and surveillance system in its basic configuration includes one or more digital video cameras, a DVR unit with a Digital Signal Processor or DSP, and a digital based monitor. In a standalone system, the cameras send their digital video data to the DVR where the DSP compiles the data using a CODEC or COmpression/DECompression utility to create digital video files. The files are then viewed on the digital monitor and or stored for later use on a hard disk drive on the DVR.

The digital surveillance software in this system can include:
1) The operating system of the DVR/DSP unit;
2) The CODEC utility program; and,
3) Any other specialized set of instructions to control the equipment.

For example, Security Camera King offers three major types of DVRs; our Elite mini series, or Elite series, and our Ultimate series. These standalone systems have a highly specialized DSP that creates digital video files and coordinates the functions between the three major devices of the system. This is usually referred to as the “operating system” and all of our units use a Linux based operating system.

The CODEC utility is a specific software program that is used to compile the video data into a digital video file. Digital video is actually several digital photographs taken in succession. Different rates may be used but a general standard is 29.9 frames per second or fps. This means the camera takes 29 digital pictures in one second so in one minute of video, the camera takes approximately 1800 pictures. You can see how the file size can become enormously large in a very short period of time.

The CODEC uses mathematical algorithms so the file size is a fraction of the original total size. This piece of digital surveillance software does this with very little loss of quality. There are many different types of CODECs such as MJPEG, MPG, H.264, etc.

A standalone system may also contain digital surveillance software that operates the equipment, including specialized functions. For example, Pan-Tilt-Zoom or PTZ cameras can move horizontally, vertically, and can enlarge objects. These movements may be controlled by digital surveillance software.

Personal Computer Digital Video Security Systems
There are digital video security systems that utile a personal computer to take the place of the DVR, DSP, and or monitor. Normally these systems contain a PCI card or similar printed circuit board that performs the bulk of the systems needs including storing the digital video files, controlling devices, and displaying the video on the computer’s monitor.

Any of the software associated with these functions, in essence, can be considered digital surveillance software.

Smartphones
Smartphones require small programs in order to adapt or interface with different systems and devises. These programs are called applications or “apps.” An app can also be of a digital surveillance software type.

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Stand Alone DVR For Security Camera

Written By:
Wednesday, January 12th, 2011

When designing your own digital video security camera system, whether it is for residential or commercial use, it is important to make the right choice for the stand alone DVR for security camera. A stand alone DVR or Digital Video Recorder is basically the “brain” of the system that coordinates the functions of the component parts and provides for storage of the digital video files.

A stand alone DVR for security camera is preferable because it is a self-supportive unit that does not rely on any other additional component (such as a personal computer) and does not require an internet connection. A typical stand alone digital video security system contains one or more digital video cameras, the DVR with a Digital Signal Processor or DSP, and a monitor.

The stand alone system works with the stand alone DVR for security camera as the central unit of control. The digital video cameras capture light images, convert them into electronic data, convert the data to binary or digital form and send it to the DVR unit. The DSP in a stand alone DVR is a highly specialized computer processing chip that is made such that it is dedicated mainly toward processing digital data into digital video files. Once the DSP creates the digital video file it may be viewed instantly (live) on a connected monitor and/or saved on the DVR for archiving or later use.

One major advantage of using a stand alone DVR for security cameras is that the unit can be placed just about anywhere that power can be supplied to it. Also, there is no risk of computer virus or hacker interference since the internet is not required for the stand alone unit to operate.

The DVR itself is basically a very specific type of computer. The DSP receives the data from the digital video cameras and compiles the data into a digital video file (that can be copied and viewed on an ordinary computer as well as the unit’s monitor if attached). The DSP normally uses a COmpression/DECompression or CODEC utility to make the digital video file smaller without a significant loss in quality. Once the file is created, it is stored on the DVRs Hard Disk Drive or HDD.

The HDD of a DVR is the same type of HDD that is used in personal computers. Therefore, DVRs are able to reap the benefits of improvement of HDDs originally created for computers. When purchasing a stand alone DVR for security cameras, it is important to purchase the right size (storage capacity) HDD. Digital video files can be incredibly large and require vast amounts of storage space. That’s why the DSP employs the use of a CODEC. However, even then the file size can become quite large in a relatively small amount of time, especially if there are several cameras that are being recorded.

The DVR works by storing the digital files in a succession or series. The DVR continues saving the files until the HDD capacity is full. Once the HDD is full, the drive begins re-recording over the original file at the beginning. The larger the drive, the longer the time cycle before re-recording begins. Security Camera King offers HDDs for our DVRs as large as 8 Terabytes in capacity.

A stand alone DVR for security camera also can contain additional hardware devices that aid in storage and manipulation of digital video files. For example, many DVRs come with a USB port for connecting a USB thumb drive. Others may also offer the option of a CD/DVD writer. The thumb drive and CD/DVD writers can be used to copy portions of the digital video file to give to police, insurance companies, courts, etc. In addition, the digital video file stored on the DVRs HDD can be copied to DVDs to create a complete archive of all camera recordings.

In addition to creating and storing digital video files, the DVR can also provide the means for controlling the cameras. Some cameras have the ability to move horizontally or vertically to increase the field of vision or to optically enlarge an object. These functions are known as Pan-Tilt-Zoom or PTZ and the DVR often contains the programming necessary to control these functions.

Check out Security Camera King’s complete line of Elite and Ultimate stand alone DVRs for security cameras. Contact one of our security experts via Live Chat or Telephone if you have any additional questions or would like to make a purchase.

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Web Ready Security Camera System

Written By:
Monday, January 10th, 2011

If you need to be able to monitor your security and surveillance system cameras from just about anywhere in the world at any time, consider using a web ready security camera system. These systems use the internet as the vehicle for transmitting their data so anywhere there is broadband internet access, there is potential for monitoring your home or business security camera system.

A web ready security camera system is reasonably priced, easy to install, and easy to operate thanks to technological advancements in the electronics and computer fields over the past few years. It differs from a standalone digital video security camera system in that it utilizes the internet to transmit the signals, and a personal computer or Mac computer to monitor and store the digital video image files.

A standalone, non-web ready security camera system consists of one or more digital video cameras, a Digital Video Recorder (DVR) with a Digital Signal Processor (DSP), and a monitor. The digital video camera captures the reflective light from objects and transposes these light images into electronic images. The camera normally has an on-board analog-to-digital processing chip that changes the electronic information into pure digital or binary form.

A video transmission cable, usually an RG-59 coaxial cable, must be run from each camera to the DVR unit. The signals from the cameras travel through this cable to the DVR unit where the DSP compiles them into a digital video file. Digital video files can be extremely large in size so the DSP uses a COmpression/DECompression (CODEC) utility to shrink the size of the file without sacrificing a large amount of quality. After the digital video file is created it can be viewed live on a monitor or stored on the DVR’s Hard Disk Drive (HDD) for later use.

A web ready security camera system produces the same sort of final results but goes about doing it in a different way. First a web ready security camera system has either IP (Internet Protocol ready) cameras or an IP DVR or an IP server. If the system uses IP ready cameras, each camera has its own built in web server technology that is used for the Internet. The camera connects to the internet either via a Cat 5 Ethernet wire or wirelessly using a corresponding wireless modem or router.

If the web ready security camera system uses an IP DVR, then normal cameras are connected to the DVR and the system works like a typical standalone system. Except that the DVR (and therefore the digital video files and camera controls) can be controlled remotely via the internet and some other end-user device.

If the web ready security camera system uses an IP server, it may be able to digitize older analog based cameras and send them over the Internet or it may simply combine the signals of several newer digital cameras and send them over the Internet. In either case, the digital video file must be sent over the internet to a connected computer that can act as a storage and monitor device or to some other web-compatible monitoring device such as an iPhone, iPad, 3G and 4G smartphones and other similar devices. (Note that if the signal is received by another DVR or personal computer, the system does not have a device to save digital video files to and therefore can only be used to monitor the cameras in real-time).

Probably the most profound advantage of web ready security camera systems is the incredibly almost infinite geographic locations in the world where the system can be monitored and operated. Theoretically, anywhere there is broadband Internet accessibility; the system can be monitored and controlled.

Perhaps the biggest disadvantage to these types of systems is that since they are connected to the internet, a very public domain, they may be susceptible to hacker intervention and even computer viruses.

All in all, there is nothing that can provide you with such extensive capability to monitor and control your system remotely than a web ready security camera system. If you need more information or would like to purchase a web ready security camera system, please contact one of Security Camera King’s security experts today either via live chat or telephone.

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Outdoor Exterior Security Camera Software

Written By:
Thursday, December 30th, 2010

In this article we are going to talk about outdoor exterior security camera software. We’ll talk a little about what it is and how it works and what type of outdoor security camera equipment you can use with it.

So exactly what is outdoor exterior security camera software? There are basically two types of software. The first type is software that is used on a standalone digital video security camera system and the second type is software that is used with outdoor exterior security cameras and your personal computer. Although the name “outdoor exterior security camera software” refers to a computer based program, both types serve different roles in a digital video security camera system.

The first type of outdoor exterior security camera software that we refer to is used with a standalone digital video security camera system. These systems normally consist of one to several cameras, a Digital Video Recorder or DVR with a Digital Signal Processor or DSP, and a monitor. The outdoor exterior cameras capture the video image and send it in digital form to the DVR unit that includes the DSP. The DSP interprets the digital data and uses a special program utility, called a COmpression/DECompression or CODEC to create a digital video file. The digital video file is stored on the DVR and can be viewed on the monitor in real-time (live) or at a later time.

The outdoor exterior security camera software in this case is used on the DVR with the DSP to coordinate each component in the standalone system and provide any additional camera, DVR, or monitor functions. For example, outdoor exterior security camera systems are often used in commercial settings such as providing security in store parking lots. In this example the software coordinates the functions of the cameras with the DVR and DSP, may provide the programming necessary for the CODEC that is used, and directs the DVR to store the digital video file that is created.

In addition, this particular outdoor exterior security camera software may also include special functions that either operate or control the camera, DVR, and monitor. A specific example of this type of software is often used in the store parking lots already mentioned. In this setting, it may be advantageous for the user to follow or “track” a person or vehicle. Pan-Tilt-Zoom (PTZ) cameras used with DVRs that have software with this capability can detect motion. Once the motion is detected (by the software programming) the camera is controlled by the software to Pan, Tilt, or Zoom in order to provide the best possible video of the object as it moves in the field of vision of the camera. Usually, this software is provided by the manufacturer of the DVR at the time of purchase of the unit.

The second type of outdoor exterior security camera software that we mentioned earlier is used with cameras and a personal computer. Although this software may be able to perform the same functions as the standalone security system, it has an additional responsibility of coordinating the digital video cameras with the computer. In these systems the personal computer takes the place of the DVR and DSP as well as the monitor.

These systems are advantageous because they enable the use of an existing personal computer with the digital security cameras. The computer is connected to the cameras via a PCI type computer card that serves as the bridge between the two. Ultimately, for just the cost of the digital video cameras and outdoor exterior security camera software and PCI card, an entire digital video security system can be constructed without the need to purchase a DVR and monitor.

Since computer and electronic technology is rapidly advancing, there may be a third type of outdoor exterior security camera software to consider as well. Although this system uses components that are not specifically designed as digital video security equipment, it may make an economical suitable substitution in some instances. This third type of software allows the use of a webcam or other similar device to be used as a security camera.

This should give you with some good introductory working knowledge about outdoor exterior security camera software. There are as many different brands of software as there are manufacturers of equipment; too many in fact to mention in this article. However, if you have any additional questions about outdoor exterior security camera software, contact one of Security Camera King’s security specialists today.

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