Posts Tagged ‘ ptz’



Security Cameras Monitoring Systems

Written By:
Friday, October 22nd, 2010

Some of the most popular items used for protection and surveillance today are security cameras monitoring systems. These systems take advantage of the latest and greatest in both electronic and computer technology making them incredibly powerful and versatile to use. In addition to deterring burglary and/or vandalism, security cameras monitoring systems offer you the peace of mind of knowing that your business, residence, or loved ones are okay.

Most security cameras monitoring systems are component systems; that is, parts of the system may differ in function (i.e. one camera may have Pan-Tilt-Zoom or PTZ and another may not) or may be made by different manufacturers (i.e. the cameras may be produced by one manufacturer while the DVR is produced by another). Regardless of the differences between components, all of the separate parts can work together to create a functional and effective security camera monitoring system.

Security cameras monitoring systems work in the following manner. The digital video camera “captures” a light image and transfers it into an electrical image. This electrical based image is sent in the form of electronic data to the DVR or Digital Video Recorder. The DVR normally contains a special type of computer processor known as a Digital Signal Processor or DSP. The DSP compiles the data from the video camera and creates a digital video file of the data which can e stored on the DVR or viewed in real time (live) on a monitor.

The DSP normally uses a COmpression/DECompression or CODEC utility to make the digital video file smaller without sacrificing quality. This is necessary because digital video files are comprised of thousands of digital photographs. In fact, they are digital photographs, but they are taken at a high rate of speed, usually around 30 photographs or Frames Per Second or 30 FPS.

This means that for every one second of video, the file will contain the equivalent of data for 30 individual digital photographs. As you can see, the file can get very large in a hurry so a CODEC is a vital and necessary tool.

The security cameras monitoring system may also include a CD/DVD writer, SD card writer, or accommodate a USB thumb drive for archiving files or for providing copies of files on a portable media to police, insurance agencies, etc.

There are a variety of optional features available for digital video security cameras however it may be easier to differentiate between cameras if they are categorized first, based on two of these features. The first criteria to use for categorizing the cameras can be the shape of the camera itself. There are three basic shapes or types:
• Box shaped cameras;
• Bullet shaped cameras; and,
• Dome cameras.

Box shaped cameras look just like the name implies; they are rectangular shaped to resemble a small box. These cameras may be mounted on walls, ceilings, and other structures. Bullet shaped cameras are elongated and rounded in shape on the ends to resemble a bullet-type structure. They may also be mounted on walls, ceilings and other structures. Finally, dome shaped cameras are usually flush mounted on ceilings with a rounded dome protrusion just big enough to allow for the camera lens.

The second criteria for categorizing digital video security cameras is whether they are designed for indoor use, outdoor use, or both. Indoor use only cameras cannot be used outdoors because they may be damaged by exposure to dust, water, and other debris. Outdoor security cameras monitoring systems or indoor/outdoor cameras are enclosed in a protective case that allows the camera to function properly but prevents entry (ingress) of dust, water and other matter.

Many outdoor cameras will be certified according to the protection the enclosure provides using a International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) standard called an Ingress Protection code or IP rating. This code consists of two digits; the first digit represents protection from dust and the second digit represents protection from liquids. The first digit of the rating ranges from 0 to 6 and the second digit ranges from 0 to 8, the higher number indicating a greater rate of protection. An IP65 rating for example, means the enclosure is dust tight and provides protection from water projected by a nozzle against the enclosure from any direction.

There are many other option features available on the components of security cameras monitoring systems. If you are interested in additional information, check our knowledge base or security articles or contact one of our security experts today.

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Home Camera System with DVR

Written By:
Friday, June 25th, 2010

A home camera system DVR or Digital Video Recorder is a standalone digital video security camera system suitable fur residential use. Recent advances in computer and electronic technology have provided the home camera system DVR user with an abundance of optional features, making the system versatile enough to be used just about anywhere.

A home cameras system DVR is basically a component system. There are different parts that make up the entire system and each individual part can differ to provide a specific function. These “parts” are the components and when put together create the system.

A typical home camera system DVR consists of the following components:
• Camera or cameras;
• Power supply;
• Processor/Digital Video Recorder with CODEC utility; and,
• Monitor

Cameras used in a home camera system DVR may be indoor or outdoor types. Outdoor cameras have a protective cover that keeps dust, water, weather and other environmental elements from penetrating it and harming the camera. These cameras are often rated based on a standard called an Ingress Protection or IP rating. When shopping for an outdoor camera, make sure it has a rating of either IP66 or IP67. Both ratings indicate complete protection from dust and water.

When creating your own custom home camera system DVR, you generally will require both outdoor and indoor cameras. Outdoor cameras may be used for monitoring the perimeter of your residence or for specific outdoor areas. Indoor cameras are generally used for monitoring rooms, doors, and areas inside the home.

Regardless if the camera is an indoor or outdoor model, each camera will need to be connected to a power supply, and a coaxial cable will need to be run from each camera to the processor/DVR. However, the coaxial cable can be eliminated by using wireless cameras instead.

A wireless home camera system DVR differs from a standard home camera system DVR in that each camera has its own transmitter and antenna. The camera transmits its video signal using the 2.4 or 5.8 GHz radio band to a corresponding receiver. The receiver is usually in the same location as the DVR. The receiver passes the radio signal in electronic form to the processor/DVR. Wireless cameras are quick and easy to install.

The digital video cameras used in a home camera system DVR are state-of-the-art electronic devices. They create a digital video image by capturing light from the lens on a special electronic sensor chip. There are two types of sensor chips; Charged Coupled Devices or CCDs and Complimentary Metal Oxide Semiconductors or CMOSs. These chips range in size from less than ¼ inch to about 1 inch. Generally, the larger the chip, the greater the resolution of the video image that is produced.

Cameras may contain special highly sensitive chips to produce digital video under different lighting conditions. Day/night vision cameras produce high quality color video with very little available visible light. Night vision infrared cameras produce high quality color video under normal lighting conditions and high quality monochrome or black and white video under infrared conditions.

Night vision infrared cameras contain Light Emitting Diodes or LEDs that project infrared light onto the target area of the camera. This illuminates the target area like a spot light or flood light; however the human eye cannot see this light. On the other hand, the camera can see the infrared illumination and indeed uses it to produce a clear, high quality video,

Day/night vision cameras require at least some sort of visible light; night vision infrared cameras can produce an image in total darkness. However, infrared cameras are limited to how far they can “see” in total darkness based on the LEDs used to illuminate the target area. If your home camera system DVR requires infrared cameras, be sure to check the range of the camera before purchasing to make sure you have one that will fulfill your needs.

Other available options for cameras include audio recording, and Pan-Tilt-Zoom (PTZ) functions. A PTZ camera with motion detection can be programmed to track moving objects.

The DVR of a home camera system DVR is like the hard disk drive on a personal computer. Its main function is to store the digital video files. Raw digital video files are extremely large which makes them difficult to store and handle. The DVR uses a CODEC utility to shrink file size but retain video clarity. DVRs can be purchased in a variety of storage sizes ranging up to several Tera bytes.

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How Connect A PTZ To A DVR Using CAT5

Written By:
Wednesday, December 9th, 2009

Connecting a PTZ Camera to a DVR Using Cat-5 Cable.

  1. Remove a small portion of the insulation at both ends of the Cat-5 cable.
  2. Once the insulation is removed, you will see that the Cat-5 cable is actually several pairs of wire bundled together.  You should see a solid-colored wire and a white wire with a colored stripe next to the colored wire (e.g. a blue wire and a white wire with a blue stripe).
  3. For the purpose of connecting a PTZ, it doesn’t really matter if you use the solid color wire or the striped wire for positive or negative.  You just want to make certain you are consistent  (i.e. if the solid color wire is connected to the positive at the PTZ, the solid color wire must be connected to the positive at the DVR as well.)
  4. Twist one wire to one of the loose wires coming from the PTZ.  Then connect the other wire in the same fashion.  To make certain you keep a solid connection, you may want to use wire nuts or b-wire connectors (“beanies”).
  5. Connect the Cat-5 wires, using the same pair as is connected to the PTZ, to the rs-485 port on the back of the DVR.  In the case of multiple PTZ’s, it is possible to daisy-chain all the Cat-5s together to connect to the rs-485 port.
  6. Congratulations!  You have now successfully connected your PTZ  control wires to your DVR.
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What is a PTZ (Pan-Tilt-Zoom) Camera?

Written By:
Thursday, September 3rd, 2009

A PTZ (Pan-Tilt-Zoom) camera refers to the ability of a camera to move up and down (tilt), left and right (pan), and to magnify (zoom). Typically, the pan-tilt function is accomplished with a built in motor. The zoom function is accomplished either digitally or optically. The magnification of the camera is determined by multiplying the digital and optical zoom. For example, a camera that can optically zoom in 22 times (22x) and digitally zoom in 10 times (10x) is usually referred to as a 220X PTZ camera. Optical zoom is always preferred since this is a true zoom accomplished by the lens itself. The digital zoom is simply a virtual zoom and it usually will result in pixilation.

PTZ cameras can be controlled through by connecting a control or data cable between the PTZ camera and either a DVR or PTZ keyboard. There are many protocols available. The most common are Pelco D and Pelco P, but there are many more. It is important to make sure that your DVR is compatible with your PTZ and has the right protocol choices.

There are many benefits to using PTZ cameras. The most common benefit is the ability to cover a large open area using a PTZ where each PTZ can do the job of many standard cameras. Also, a PTZ can provide additional detail video coverage for other fixed overview cameras. For example, if motion is detected at the entrance of a parking lot by an overview camera, a PTZ can be triggered to zoom in to the entrance and cover it in great detail for a preset amount of time. Also, a PTZ camera can usually be put on a pre-configured tour acting like a sentry.

PTZ cameras are available in different styles included box cameras, bullet cameras and most common today are vandal domes. PTZ cameras can be installed outdoors if they are in a weatherproof housing or indoors in a ceiling or surface mount. They are available in different sizes. The smaller PTZ cameras are often called mini speed domes, while the larger models are just referred to as PTZ cameras. Newer PTZ cameras have recently become available with auto tracking built in. This feature allows the camera to move when tracking a moving object automatically.

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Surveillance System for a Parking Lot

Written By:
Wednesday, August 19th, 2009

It may seem challenging to attempt to properly cover your parking lot with security cameras. Just using overview cameras to monitor an entire parking lot will usually not be enough. Though the overview cameras will have a general overview of the area, unless you invest in megapixel IP cameras you will get very little detail. IP cameras are certainly an option , but megapixel IP cameras capable of capturing useful detail are fairly expensive. You can easily expect to spend several thousand dollars per camera and then have to deal with the bandwidth and storage issues.

The most economical option is to supplement the overview cameras with a few pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) cameras. The DVR can be programed to trigger a PTZ to cover an entrance or exit of a parking lot when another camera spots motion there. This would allow you to capture great detail as a vehicle or person enters or leaves the parking lot. also, the PTZ cameras can be programmed to remain on a tour while there is no activity in key areas to cover the rest of the parking lot. There is also the option of motion tracking PTZ cameras that are capable of following moving objects in the field of view. Using this combination of cameras can actually provide more usable footage with similar detail as a megapixel IP camera, only it will save you many, many thousands of dollars.

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