Posts Tagged ‘ power supply ’

Security Cameras Power Supply

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Tuesday, August 16th, 2011

Many people are unaware of the security cameras power supply requirements.  There are several different types of power supplies to meet the needs of the camera and accessory equipment.  Most all digital video cameras run off a low-voltage power supply so there are not as many factors to be concerned about as there is if they used full household AC current.

There are actually two major security cameras power supply.  One power supply type produces AC current while the other produces DC current.   Most cameras utilize either 24 Volts AC (VAC) or 12 Volts DC (VDC).  There are some cameras that are designed to be used with either security camera power supply type.  However, the power supplies are generally dedicated to one type of voltage or the other and not both. This means that a DC camera must have a DC security camera power supply.  Likewise, an AC camera will only operate off an AC security camera power supply.

Why use two different types of power?  For one thing, manufacturers make that decision when they create the camera.  Also, if your system is going to include a very long run from the power supply to the camera, DC power will degrade over distance but AC won’t.  Therefore, using AC power is not always a personal preference or choice but can be a requirement for your system.

Most of Security Camera King’s cameras operate on 12 VDC but there are many cameras in our on-line catalog that are dual voltage so they can utilize either type. As far as the camera goes Security Camera King offers two basic types of security camera power supplies.

The first type is a 4 channel output switching supply such as product# PWR-MINI-4.  It basically the same thing as a plug-in transformer (sometimes referred to as an adapter) that has four power leads complete with connecting jacks.  Some people prefer this type of security cameras power supply because it has a tendency to look sleek and small versus what could be construed as a “bulky” wall mounted power supply.

Which leads us to the second type of security cameras power supply, the multi channel Closed Circuit TeleVision (CCTV power distribution box).  This power distribution box comes in 4, 8, 9, or 16 channel versions.  One such example is product# PWR-4.  The power supply normally is hard wired or plugged into normal house current.  The power leads to each device are usually attached to screw terminals in the power distribution box.

There are benefits to using a power distribution box for the security cameras power supply.  Power distribution boxes can be purchased with up to 16 channels or terminals for cameras and other devices.  So instead of the mini unit which can only handle 4 devices at one time, all power sources are connected in one common spot (this good if you ever have to troubleshooting too).

Another interesting item, product# CV-24AC-12VDC is a voltage converter 24 VAC to 12 VDC at 1.5 A.  Since AC power can be run further than DC without as much degradation, you can use this adapter to run AC power to the camera and then convert it into 12 VDC.  This is also helpful when using thin gauged wires also.

Remember when designing and purchasing your system that there are more components that require power besides your camera.  For those users that need systems that will be taking advantage of the InfraRed (IR) capability of a camera, you may also need an illuminator.  An illuminator is an IR LED flood light that extends the nighttime range of the infrared function on your camera.  Or you may want to use a powered microphone or other apparatuses that require power so make sure you purchase a power distribution box with enough available channels.

If you have any doubts or questions about what type and size power system you should use for your security cameras power supply, please contact one of our security experts.  They can help you design a new system or improve and old one at no extra cost!  You can contact them through Live Chat or by telephone at 866-573-8878 Monday through Friday at 866-573-8878 from 9AM to 6 PM EST.


16 Camera Power Supply

Saturday, June 4th, 2011

If your digital video security and surveillance system has 16 cameras, you will more than likely need to get a 16 camera power supply.  Unless your cameras are battery operated or PoE (Powered over Ethernet), they will require that a power line be run from a power distribution box or transformer to the camera.

There are two different types of 16 camera power supply, based on the type of current that is needed by the cameras.  It seems as though most cameras these days lean toward the low-voltage Direct Current or DC of 12 volts.  However there are still systems that exist that create 24 volts of AC current.  You CANNOT connect AC voltage supplies to DC cameras or DC voltage supplies to AC cameras with one exception.

Security Camera King does have a few cameras in their inventory that have the ability to accept either 12 VDC or 24 VAC.  However, if the equipment you are providing power to is not rated for dual current use, you can easily ruin your camera and other components of your system by using the wrong type.  So make sure that the camera’s power requirements match the output of the power device you are using.

If most digital video security cameras run off of 12 VDC these days, then why bother with AC voltage systems?  As we mentioned above, many older systems found it more practical to use AC rather than needing to bother with changing the AC to DC.  Alternating Current can be changed to DC by using a rectifier circuit and a transformer to reduce the voltage.  Second, AC can be sent further than DC without degradation of the circuit (mainly loss of voltage).  Most of this is a bit too technical for our needs with security cameras, so suffice it to say that most conventional systems made today are DC and not AC.

However, the security system owner need not feel left out and empty handed if he/she needs to replace a camera and their original system is AC but the new camera is DC.  Security Camera King’s Product# CV-24AC-12VDC is an AC/DC single camera adaptor that can convert 24 VAC into 12 VDC.

Getting back to the subject of a 16 camera power supply, there are many ways this can be accomplished.  First, and probably in many ways the easiest, is to purchase Security Camera King’s 16 Channel Power CCTV Power Distribution Box Product# PWR-16.

The PWR-16 obtains its power from typical household current.  However the box itself contains the rectifiers and transformers to create enough power for up to 16 cameras or other devices.  All you need to do is mount the power distribution box (usually, but not always in the vicinity of the DVR) connect the incoming household current and use the screw posts to connect each camera to the 12 VDC they require.

In addition to the PWR-16 DC unit, Security Camera King also offers a 16 Camera Power Supply suitable for AC cameras.  Product #PWR-16AC-8A provides 24 VAC for up to 16 individual cameras.

For some security system owners, one power distribution box may be impractical.  For example, 8 cameras (for what ever reason) may be on the East side of the building while 8 more occur on the West.  In this case it may be more practical to use two 8 Channel CCTV power distribution boxes instead of one 16 camera power supply.

Lastly, Security Camera King also offers a unique DC power supply transformer for security cameras.  This device plugs into any typical wall outlet and outputs a total of 4 DC power supply leads.  Although this sounds impractical, it may actually be advantageous to use 4 of these devices to provide the power to 16 cameras as well.

No two digital video security systems are alike and likewise, providing a 16 camera power supply may not always entail using the same power supply solution.  Versatility is a key factor in today’s systems so what ever works best for your system is the way to go.

If you have any questions or are considering the purchase of a 16 camera power supply, please contact one of our security experts either via on-line “Live Chat” or by telephone at 866-573-8878 Monday through Friday from 9AM to 6PM EST.


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.