When looking for versatility in a digital video security camera nothing may offer you more than an IR bullet camera (InfraRed bullet camera). Among the most popular types of cameras these days, the IR bullet camera usually comes packed with dozens of extra features, thanks to modern technology. In the following article, we’ll take a look at digital video security cameras and how they work and especially how an IR bullet camera works.
There are three major types of digital video security cameras based on shape; the box type, the dome type, and the bullet type. For many years the favorite has always been the box type. Although box type cameras are somewhat obtrusive, they are versatile because you must purchase the lens separately, which allows you to change the field of view characteristics when ever you want. Also, box type cameras are intended for indoor use, but can easily be converted to outdoor use by placing the camera in an outdoor rated housing.
Next in line is the dome camera. Dome cameras are used indoors or outdoors but it seems as though the majority of their applications lean toward indoor installation and mounting. These camera are fast becoming competitive with box cameras because they are small and unobtrusive, versatile with many features, and are easy to mount to the wall or ceiling. Dome cameras can be purchased as indoor, outdoor, or indoor/outdoor models. The can also be sold as vandal proof because once they are properly mounted on the ceiling it would be very difficult for a vandal to change the position of the camera.
Finally, there is the IR bullet camera or just a plain bullet camera. They are so called because their shape resembles the shape of a bullet. Bullet cameras may be mounted in several different ways. Regardless if they are mounted on the wall or ceiling, bullet camera mounts normally have a bit of an extension arm that aids in getting the camera in the exact position you desire. The down side to this is that the camera can become vulnerable to vandalism because it can be easily repositioned.
Now that we’re familiar with the types of cameras, let’s talk a little bit about how they work. As a matter of fact, all three types of cameras produce digital video images in the same manner and this is how they do it.
The lens’ job is to gather the reflected light from images in it’s field of view, and focus them onto a very small censor chip (the chip ranges from 1/4 to 1/2 square inch). The sensor chip is a high specialized electronic chip that can convert light energy into electrical energy. The electrical energy can be measured and the values used to recreate the actual image as a digital video image on an electronic display monitor.
There are two different sensor chips that may be used and although they may go about producing the video image differently, the both produce the same result; digital video images. The names of these sensor chips are the Charged Coupled Device or CCD and the Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor or CMOS.
These sensor chips are incredibly interesting because they possess an unusual trait. They both are sensitive to near infrared radiation. This is the type of radiation that is given off by TV remotes, DVD players, etc. It is harmless to humans but even better for the security camera industry, it is completely invisible. Therefore, it could be pitch dark and the camera can still produce a video image as if a spot light were shining in its direction.
It does this by the use of InfraRed producing Light Emitting Diodes or IR LEDs. Generally, the more LEDs used to produce infrared “light” the longer the range of the camera in total darkness. This is where the bullet camera comes in.
Due to its shape an IR bullet camera can really pack a large array of IR LEDs around its lens. Some camera boast as many as 78 or more and a range if 300 feet.
To summarize, the IR bullet camera is a versatile digital video security tool. It provides the same quality video as box camera but doesn’t require an additional housing. It provides the capability for IR imagery like a dome camera but it has a much longer range potential due to the size and shape of the camera.