Posts Tagged ‘ pan-tilt-zoom camera’



PTZ Security Cameras

Written By:
Tuesday, March 1st, 2011

Pan-Tilt-Zoom or PTZ security cameras can really extend the field of view of an otherwise stationary camera.  There are a variety of PTZ security cameras that can perform many functions in addition to PTZ perhaps making this camera the most versatile in application of all the different types of security cameras.   Security Camera King has a large selection of only the highest quality PTZ security cameras in the business.

A horizontal movement of a camera’s field of view (or direction of aim) is called a “Pan.”  Likewise, vertical movement of a camera’s field of view is called “Tilt.”  Using combinations of telephoto lens moving in and out to enlarge or shrink the field of view or magnify specific objects within the field of view is called “Zooming.”  A PTZ camera of course, can do all three of these actions.

Several years ago, a PTZ security camera was incredibly expensive; especially if it was the older analog type camera.  These cameras were often bullet or box type cameras that were mounted on electric motor operated pedestals to produce the movements necessary to pan or tilt.  They were often awkward, bulky, and bumpy in their movement.

Today’s modern digital video PTZ cameras are very light weight and move with incredible precision and fluidity.  They are much cheaper than their analog ancestors thanks to modern technological improvements in both electronic circuitry and mechanical design.  The majority of PTZ cameras on the market today are the dome type camera.  They can be mounted on the ceiling or on the wall using horizontal mounting brackets.

Regardless of whether the camera is mounted on the ceiling or the wall, the camera itself is oriented in a position that always puts the camera dome opposite the floor or ground.  In this position, the camera has the advantage of being able to pan around in a circle of 360 degrees and tilt in a full semi-sphere of 180 degrees or more.  If possible a ceiling mount or side mount on a pole is more desirable than a wall mount because providing there are no additional objects blocking the view of the camera, it has a greater total viewing area (not being blocked by a wall).

PTZ security cameras are controlled by any a variety of different methods.  They can be controlled using a PTZ controller board which has a joystick and push buttons or they can often be controlled by keyboard buttons alone. Each of Security Camera King’s featured DVR’s the Elite-Mini, Elite, and Ultimate series also offer’s a unique mouse PTZ control.  The camera movements can be controlled by clicking the camera’s view on the monitor screen and pointing and dragging the mouse.  The PTZ camera will follow the mouse’s movement.

In addition, PTZ security cameras can also be purchased with optional auto-tracking features.  Auto-tracking is a special function that enables the camera to detect motion, follow the object, and zoom in on the object automatically to provide the most advantageous view.  This feature is often used by security departments responsible for large retail parking lots or industrial employee parking lots to maintain security coverage in these areas.  When cars or individuals enter or move around the parking lot the camera can keep track of them every inch of the way.

Another common feature of PTZ security cameras is area specific preset patrol.  In this mode the camera is preset to patrol a specified area.  It can be set to track and follow in that specified area or when triggered can be set to pan, tilt, and/or zoom to a pre-determined specified area.

When choosing your PTZ security camera, make sure you purchase the appropriate type for the environment; cameras are either rated for use indoors or outdoors or both.  Next you’ll need to determine if you need the optional auto-tracking feature.

You will also need to determine the magnitude of the zoom function that you desire.  Generally, the greater the magnification of the zoom function, the more expensive the camera due to the precision lenses and electronic circuitry that are required to support it.  Lastly, you will need to determine what type of mount you’ll need for the camera.

Checkout Security Camera King’s full line of PTZ security cameras by clicking on  “Pan Tilt Security Cameras“.

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PTZ Web Cameras

Written By:
Monday, February 14th, 2011

Pan-Tilt-Zoom or PTZ Web cameras bring two powerful punches to the benefit of the digital video security and surveillance world. Not only can these cameras allow your system to reap the powerful benefit of camera movement (the first punch) but also make use of the Internet as a means for networking (punch number two).

PTZ cameras have been used in the video security and surveillance world for quite some time; even when the systems operated in a totally analog format. However, as technology has increased, cameras have become more powerful in function and lighter in weight as well as more versatile in application. Now, digital video cameras with PTZ functions are much more easily controlled.

Older analog systems usually required a separate, big, bulky controller board that connected to the Digital Video Recorder or DVR unit to manipulate PTZ cameras. This board was proprietary in that it was the only device that could be used to pan, tilt, or zoom PTZ cameras. However, since video security cameras have left the analog genre and become digital, there has been some merging that has occurred with the personal computer world.

There are still separate controller boards available for use with digital PTZ cameras, but these cameras can also be controlled by using software and a personal computer. Many systems are now based on personal computer Graphical User Interfaces or GUIs and the PTZ functions can be controlled by a computer mouse or keyboard strokes.

One PTZ web camera can literally take the place of several non-PTZ cameras. Since these cameras can move in two dimensions and enlarge views as well, they can cover the field of vision that would normally take several non-PTZ cameras to cover. PTZ web cameras have many uses and are great for monitoring large areas such as parking lots, industrial property, and even highways.

Having one or more PTZ cameras is certainly a powerful advantage, but if these cameras are also PTZ Web cameras, their versatility in application and ease of access is incredibly increased. A PTZ Web camera utilizes the Internet as the networking solution for the system thereby broadening the scope of access globally.

PTZ Web cameras are also known as IP ready or Internet Protocol ready cameras. These cameras have built in web server technology so that the camera can connect directly to the Internet. Once the Internet connection has been established these cameras can be used in many ways.

For example, more than one PTZ Web cameras can be networked together using the Internet to carry their signals to a remotely located Digital Video Recorder or DVR unit that can record their digital video data. Another way PTZ Web cameras can be used is as individual cameras that use the Internet to send their digital video data to personal computers which are used to monitor and record their digital video data. This has great implications.

PTZ Web cameras that are connected to the Internet can be accessed anywhere in the world there is broadband Internet access. This instantly converts the accessibility of the camera from a local system to a globally accessible system. In addition to monitoring these cameras anywhere there is Internet access, these cameras can also be controlled remotely from the same point.

This access is not limited to only a personal computer with an Internet browser, but 3G and 4G smartphones can also monitor and control these cameras. This means you could be sunning on the beach in Australia while panning, tilting, zooming and monitoring your PTZ web camera security system in Paris. What more is the only thing needed to use your smartphone to do this is the small software application or app; and Security Camera King makes smartphone apps available for their featured security systems for free.

In addition, PTZ Web cameras can also be programmed to track or follow moving objects. This auto-tracking option is great for keeping a close eye on moving objects in the cameras field of vision, especially if the field of vision is not expected to contain moving objects.

So if you have the need for a digital video security cameras that can “look” left and right, up and down, and enlarge the view of objects, consider purchasing PTZ cameras. However, if you would like a camera that does all this and can be viewed and controlled anywhere in the world there is broadband Internet access, consider purchasing PTZ Web Cameras.

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Night Vision Wireless Security Camera

Written By:
Tuesday, January 25th, 2011

Tired of not being able to see things that go “bump” in the dark? If that’s the case, you need a night vision wireless security camera. These cameras take advantage of the latest technology in digital camera security systems, are easy to install, and are reasonably priced as well.

Can a night vision wireless security camera actually “see” in the dark? Well, indirectly the answer is yes. Although the camera doesn’t actually “see” in the dark, it uses infrared illumination to light the target area of the camera. This infrared illumination is actually invisible to the human eye, so we can’t see it, but the camera can. Before we get ahead of ourselves let’s back up and start at the beginning.

There are many types of digital video security cameras based on appearance and function. The night vision wireless security camera is one of those types that contains highly specialized features for highly specialized applications. Some of the other optional features that are available include the following:

• Pan-Tilt-Zoom or PTZ. This feature allows the camera to move “left and right” and “up and down” which greatly increases the field of vision of the camera. This camera can also “zoom in” on objects to enlarge their view.
• Motion Detection. Camera can come equipped with motion detectors that turn the camera recording on only when motion is detected.
• Audio Recording. Sounds can also be recorded as well as conducting two-way audio communication.
• Internet Protocol or IP ready. Cameras can connect to and use the Internet for networking.

Let’s keep the “focus” (pun intended) on a night vision wireless security camera. First, the camera operates by transferring light images into electronic impulses that can be measured to create digital video images. In digital video language, this transferring of images is normally referred to as “capturing.”

The night vision wireless security camera captures images by using a very special electronic sensor. There are actually two different types of sensors and although they capture images in a slightly different way, they both produce the same end result (a digital video image.) One of the sensors is a Charged Coupled Device or CCD and the other is a Complimentary Metal Oxide Semiconductor or CMOS.

It just so happens, that both CCDs and CMOSs are inherently sensitive to not only the spectrum of electromagnetic radiation we call “visible light” but are also sensitive to infrared radiation or “invisible infrared light.” (We call it invisible because as mentioned earlier, the human eye cannot see it.) Specifically, most night vision wireless security cameras are inherently sensitive to a band of infrared radiation called “near infrared radiation” or for our purpose, we’ll call infrared illumination.

So where does the infrared illumination originate? There are some small amounts that are emitted (or radiated) from objects, especially heat and light sources. However, a night vision wireless security camera normally provides its own illumination using an array of infrared Light Emitting Diodes or LEDs that surround the camera lens or are right next to it pointing in the direction of the camera’s field of vision.

The infrared LEDs use much less electricity than a typical filament light, and the illumination they emit can’t be seen by humans but can be detected by the night vision wireless security camera. There are some camera/systems that do not include LEDs around the lens but may use separate infrared LED “illuminators.” These illuminators can also be used with cameras that do already have LEDs to extend their range.

This brings us to an important point. Since the LEDs provide the illumination for the night vision wireless security camera, every camera has a range. Be certain before purchasing your camera that you know what range you will require and that the camera you are purchasing can capture images within that range.

Finally, as the name indicates, a night vision wireless security camera does not require a video transmission cable to be run from each camera to the DVR as other non-wireless systems do. The camera takes advantage of one of many different types of wireless technologies to send its images via radio waves to a receiver or a DVR with a built-in receiver. One example of this technology is 2.4 or 5.8 MHz technology; the same used for wireless land-line based telephones. Talk about making installation easy!

Contact one of our security experts via our on-line “Live Chat” or via telephone if you have any additional questions concerning a night vision wireless security camera.

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The Basics of RS485 and PTZ Control

Written By:
Friday, August 7th, 2009

Almost every DVR has the ability to control a multitude of devices using the RS485 protocol. RS485 uses 2 wires to send and receive data to and from these devices. All the devices in an RS485 “network” are connected in parallel with one another. This is a very simple form of communication and relies mainly on the address that is given to each device.

The most common type of device that would be controlled in a security surveillance environment is a PTZ camera. Each PTZ camera on the system must be given a unique identification number. The method of setting this number varies from camera to camera, but normally this is accomplished either by setting a switch on the camera or through the on-screen display or OSD. At this point, you should also take note of the baud rate of the PTZ and the protocol that the PTZ uses (Usually Pelco-D).

Once each PTZ camera is given a unique ID, then the DVR can be configured. Each camera on the DVR that will be controlled will have settings that need to be configured. Just match up these settings with the settings that are configured in the camera. At this point, you should be able to control your PTZ.

There are many other types of devices that can be controlled using RS485. The setup is identical for those devices as well.

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