Posts Tagged ‘ Security Cameras’

High Quality Wireless Security Cameras

Written By:
Tuesday, October 11th, 2011

Are you looking for a high quality wireless security camera?  Look no further because Security Camera King has a great selection of only the highest quality wireless cameras in the security camera industry.

You may not be familiar a high quality wireless security camera and you may be asking yourself, what exactly is this?  Cameras that send their video image data via radio waves are referred to as “wireless” cameras.   However, this may be a misnomer because they may not be entirely wireless.

Wireless cameras need power and that may be provided by means of a wired power supply.  If that is the case then the camera isn’t totally wireless, even though the industry uses that term.  A truly wireless camera will usually obtain its power from on board one-time use or rechargeable batteries.

There are several different types of wireless technologies that may be used such as the 2.4 or 5.8 GHz or the 900 MHz technologies which are basically the same technologies that are used for land-line based wireless telephones.  These technologies usually present a clear transmission that is relatively strong and is definitively strong enough to support high quality wireless security cameras.

There is one “down side” to these wireless technologies.  They work on the principle of Line Of Sight or LOS.  LOS means that the maximum range stated by the manufacturer is valid if there are no objects between the transmitter (or camera) and the receiver.  However, this doesn’t mean that the wireless feature won’t work if there is (are) an object(s) between the two.  Instead, depending on the physical make-up of the object, the range is just reduced.  Many things can affect the maximum range of a wireless camera such as windows, walls, buildings, trees, fences and such.  So it’s a good idea to survey your camera placement before purchasing your camera(s).

There is also another type of wireless camera that doesn’t transmit its video data to a receiver which is then cable connected to a DVR.   This other type is an IP (Internet Protocol) wireless camera.  IP wireless cameras use WiFi to connect to a router or modem which then connects them to the Internet.  Once connected to the Internet, these cameras are usually viewable from anywhere in the world there is broad band Internet availability.  In addition, these cameras can also be monitored on 3G and 4G smartphones.

Besides being convenient for security camera systems, high quality wireless security cameras are also found as hidden, covert cameras.  Security Camera King carries a full line of these cameras to fit just about any situation.  The following is a partial list of some of the high quality wireless security cameras that we offer for purchase:

  • Black and white or color button camera
  • Black and white or color Phillip’s head screw camera
  • Wireless dog baby monitor camera
  • Black and white or color wireless motion detector
  • Black and white or color wireless wall clock
  • Black and White or color wireless “EXIT” sign
  • Black and white or color wireless desktop speakers
  • Black and white or color vanity mirror with touch activation
  • Black and white or color carbon monoxide detector
  • Black and white or color wind tunnel camera
  • Black and white or color Alarm clock camera
  • Black and white or color cordless house phone camera
  • Black and white or color CD/Boom box camera
  • Black and white or color wireless suspended animation clock camera
  • Black and white or color utility box camera
  • Black and white or color Air Wick air freshener camera
  • Black and white or color tissue box camera
  • Black and white or color down view smoke detector
  • Black and white or color emergency camera

Most all of these hidden wireless cameras contain high quality 3.7mm wide angle lenses, a 1/4 or 1/3 inch CCD or CMOS sensor, and of course a transmitter and antenna.  Most also run on battery power or they are wired into the electrical appliance that they are in.

So if you are looking for a high quality wireless security camera, talk to one of our security experts to help you find the one that is right for you.  You can contact our security experts by on-line “Live Chat” or by telephone at 866-573-8878 Monday through Friday from 9AM to 6PM EST.


Surveillance Camera Microphones

Written By:
Tuesday, October 11th, 2011

Capturing video footage with your digital video camera system is great, but there may be times when audio is also needed.  In this case you will more than likely want to have some good surveillance camera microphones.

Many of Security Camera King’s digital video security cameras come with an on-board surveillance camera microphone to record audio.  Some of the more frequent applications of audio are using the camera at entrances and exits as a door guard, gate keeper, or other special applications.

Two-way audio using the Internet or a network allows you to hear what is being said or done and react by being able to talk back where the subjects can hear you through the camera’s on-board speaker.

Not all units have surveillance camera microphones for this purpose.  However, Security Camera King does sell powered microphones specifically for this purpose.  Our product# MIC is rugged yet produces studio quality sound and the microphone can be mounted almost anywhere. It has both the power plug receptacle and the BNC plug-in for the audio cable.  The microphone is sturdy and small so as not to be obtrusive when it is installed along with a digital video camera.

WARNING:  There are state laws concerning the recording of conversations without all those participating in the conversation being aware of the recording.  Check with your own state laws to make sure you are complying with state, federal, and/or local laws if you are covertly recording conversations and video images as well.  Oddly enough, there doesn’t seem to be too many restrictions on video capture, but there are plenty that deal with audio recording.

For many states where a surveillance camera microphone (with audio) is used, a simple notice or sign posted in the area of the camera is sufficient enough. (For example, “These premises are protected by digital video cameras with audio.  Both video and audio is being recorded.)   Other states may have more elaborate requirements to be compliant.

Quite often you may wish to have a security camera audio hookup on one particular camera in your system:  A baby monitor.  Having audio for a baby monitor increases the ability to keep a safe watch on a child.  It can alert you immediately if anything is wrong.

External microphones like product# MIC above are normally connected to the Digital Video Recorder or DVR by two wires with a BNC connector on the end.   The standard power plug accepts from 6 to 12 VDC.  Again, check the specifications of your camera as the camera may already have an on-board microphone/speaker.

Sometimes it’s more advantageous to have a separate surveillance camera microphone even if one comes on-board with the camera.   Chances are that if you are covertly recording video, you won’t want the camera mounted somewhere that will make it easily seen.  The same situation for the microphone applies, however the camera may be mounted in such a remote or unusual place that you will want a separate surveillance camera microphone mounted closer to the origination of the sound.  This could mean that the camera could be in one wall of the room and the microphone is installed somewhere quite distant from the camera such as the opposing wall or on the ceiling.

If you are installing a new system or replacing an older DVR with a newer DVR and it is one of Security Camera King’s featured DVRs the DVR will be able to accept audio input and audio output.  Even our entry level 4 Channel Elite-Mini Economy DVR has to Audio In ports and one Audio Out.  However, other DVRS may not include the ability to support audio so it is best to check the specifications sheet for that DVR before purchasing.

If you have any additional questions concerning surveillance camera microphone or security cameras or DVRs with audio, please contact any one of our security experts either via on-line “Live Chat” or by telephone at 866-573-8878 Monday through Friday from 9AM to 6 PM EST.


USB Security Camera

Written By:
Tuesday, September 27th, 2011

USB security cameras are both affordable and easy to install which makes them an ideal choice for security and surveillance monitoring both in the home and at the office, especially if you are not interested in buying a full system.  USB security cameras utilize a personal computer as part of the security system instead of a Digital Video Recorder or DVR.

“USB” is a computer acronym that stands for Universal Serial Bus.  These cameras require a coaxial cable or similar cabling for transmitting their video images to a processor or personal computer.  They do this via the personal computer’s USB plug.

Most USB security cameras do not come with a PCI card that can do most of the processing work for the computer.  Instead the USB security camera relies fully on the processing power and storage capacity of the personal computer.  Often a CODEC or COmpression/DECompression software or circuitry is used to reduce the size of the digital video file while maintaining high video quality.  On a PCI based USB system the CODEC(s) might be hardwired onto the card in the form of an Integrated Circuit (IC) chip.  Most of the time USB security cameras run straight off the computer so the CODEC is usually programmed in the software that must be loaded onto the computer before you plug in the camera.

USB security cameras utilize the USB port on a personal computer to connect to the computer.  In addition, they normally come with software that processes the digital video signal and allows you to use your computer as the processor/CODEC device, monitor, and DVR storage unit.  As you can see, this not only makes these systems easy to install, but reduces the cost by eliminating the expense of purchasing an additional processor, monitor, and DVR.

The computer monitor can be used to view the video, either live or from stored digital files.  The DVR is just like the personal computer’s hard drive disk, so the computer’s hard drive can be used to store the files.  If archiving or transferring the files is necessary, you can use your personal computer’s CD/DVD writer or USB flash drive to copy the files.

USB security cameras provide video at the same resolutions available as stand- alone units.  Cameras normally capture video in full color under visible light conditions and in black and white or monochromatic under infrared light recording.

The cameras in this system use either a Charged Coupled Device or CCD or a Complimentary Metal-Oxide Semiconductor (CMOS) to capture the light transmitted through the lens into electrical energy.  This energy can be interpreted and converted into high quality video.  Due to modern technological advances, these sensors can be highly sensitive to light and produce images in very low light conditions.  In addition, CCDs and CMOSs are inherently sensitive to near infrared radiation which makes them excellent for use as night vision infrared video cameras.  The camera sees the infrared light, normally produced by infrared Light Emitting Diodes or LEDS, but humans cannot see this light at all.

A USB security camera has lot’s of benefits, but they all come at one huge cost.  Regardless of the processor speed and storage capacity on the hard disk, USB video capture really taxes the resources of the computer.  It may be difficult to even try using to USB security cameras because of the load placed upon the computer’s processor.

Typically you won’t see this happen on a security camera system because the processors are made specifically to handle the type of digital processing that digital video requires.  Plus, there are no other high-demand functions for the DVR processor.  When using a USB security camera on a computer it may require so much of the computer’s resources that the computer can do nothing else (like check e-mail for example).

So in conclusion the choice is yours.  Purchase a complete system with cameras, DVR, etc. or go the cheaper route and purchase a USB security camera which could consume your computer during use.


4 Channel DVR With Cameras

Written By:
Tuesday, September 27th, 2011

One of the most popular digital video security system configurations is the 4 channel DVR with cameras security system. This is especially true for the homeowner; quite often four cameras are enough to cover their situation. Four camera security systems are not limited to homeowners by any means; they also are popular for businesses and other commercial uses. In the following article, we’ll overview the general characteristics of the eight different 4 channel DVR with cameras systems that Security Camera King (SCK) has to offer. For specific details, see each system’s description and specifications on its own web page.

Before we dive right in talking about the 4 channel DVR with cameras, there are a couple of things we should mention. First, security camera systems are referred to as “X number of channel systems. “When the word “channel” is used in this manner it normally means the same thing as “camera”; therefore a 4 channel digital video security system can use up to 4 digital video cameras.

Secondly, sometimes the term “channel” is used in a different manner, such as channel A or channel B. This use of the term normally indicates a radio frequency and not a camera, just like the channel on an FM radio or television for example.

Finally, just for clarification, a 4 channel DVR with cameras system with wireless cameras and a receiver that is referred to as an 4 camera receiver with 16 channels usually means that the system can use up to 4 cameras and the receiver has 16 different radio frequencies to choose from (to prevent interference for example) for the wireless camera to use to transmit its data.

Now, let’s talk about Security Camera King’s 4 channel DVR with cameras systems. SCK has eight different complete package systems that it offers, however, for our discussion; we can narrow this down to four. Here’s why: SCK offers systems for sale (as well as individual component parts) because we can offer you a more competitive price on a system than by selling you each component separately. However we also recognize the fact that every system has different needs.

So, SCK has grouped their systems into different packages based on the most common differences it has found between its customers needs. Therefore, for each type of 4 camera security system, we offer two different cabling/power supply/connectors solutions.

In our standard cabling systems, we offer 4 channel (camera) space saving power supplies, 4 plug n play cables pre-terminated complete with connectors. The power supplies are typical outlet plug adaptors that have four leads, one to supply power to each camera. The plug n play cables are 100 feet long each and have a BNC male connector for the camera and DVR at each end as well as a 2.5 mm female power plug.

This cabling system is good for runs that are somewhat uniform and/or if you don’t want to hassle with cutting, stripping, and attaching connectors to cable. If you have any one cable run that is longer than 100 feet in length however, this will not work for you.

For individuals whose 4 channel DVR with cameras system’s design requires cable runs longer than 100 feet, or have varied lengths for most of the cameras, SCK offers the bulk cable package. In this package we offer an 4 channel power distribution box that adequately supplies the power to each camera from one central location, one boxes of 500 foot long Siamese RG59 18/2 combined cable (combines RG59 video transmission cable with 18 gauge 2 wire power supply cable), and no-tools required twist on BNC connectors for the cameras and DVR and 2.5 mm female power plug power leads for the camera power supply.

Considering that each DVR package type offers two different cabling options, that totals 8 different 4 channel DVR with cameras systems that SCK offers at great competitive prices. These systems can now be compared based primarily on the DVR types which are the Elite-Mini Economy, the Elite Mini HD, the Elite Series, and the Ultimate Series DVRs.

Of course, each system comes with a full complement of 4 digital video security cameras offering 420 TVL of resolution, our Product# OD-LX420IR50, with the exception of the Ultimate packages where we step-up the game to a higher resolution camera of 520 TVL, our Product# OD-LX520IR50. Both cameras are dome types, high definition color and high definition black and white infrared with an infrared range of about 50 feet.


Passive Video Balun

Written By:
Friday, July 8th, 2011

If you would rather use Cat5E instead of RG59 cable, it’s likely that somewhere along the way you will need a passive video balun.  Security Camera King carries a full line of baluns both active and passive.  Passive video baluns help prevent the degradation of the radio frequency signal over cable.

A balun is really a specific type of transformer that can convert electrical signals that are balance about ground (also known as differential) to signals that are unbalanced (single ended) and vice versa.  The name “Balun” comes from two words, BAL(ance) and UN(balance).

For those of us that are not electrical engineers, another way to put it is that passive video baluns can boost signal strength and help your system make a transition to one type of cable to another.  For example, most cable used in the digital video security industry is RG59 coaxial cable.   This is an excellent cable for the job, however RG59 only has a working distance of about 600 feet before the signal starts to degrade causing poor video quality.

Using a passive video balun, the signal can be changed at the connection source from RG59 to CaT5E.  This is done because Cat5E is less expensive for one thing, secondly it’s easy to pull when installing it, it’s generally less expensive than RG59, and a passive video balun and Cat5E can carry a signal further than RG59 cable, usually about 1,000 to 1,200 feet.

In addition, if you do use Cat5E cable instead or RG59 you will have multiple pairs of wires at your disposal.  RG59 basically has a solid copper core wire insulated with plastic and then a metal shield (in essences the second wire) which is then covered by the cable cover (usually some type of plastic).  A digital video camera uses both of those wires the copper core and the outer shield to transmit its signals.

However, by using a passive video balun with Cat5E cable you have access to 8 (4 pairs) of (usually) 22 gauge wire.  This allows you to use just one Cat5E cable instead of 4 RG59 cables for 4 security cameras.

Many people would say they’ve never seen a balun before, but chances are they have.  Some older model TVs came equipped with a cable TV type plug and no antenna connection.  Usually, the RG59 type cable has 75 ohms of impedance.  An antenna was often 300 ohms of impedance.  An “adapter” often came with the TV with a male cable TV type plug on one end, and two screw connections on the other end to connect to an antenna.  That adapter is actually a balun, and it’s used to balance the impedance differential between the TV outlet and the antenna.

Before going any further, now would be a good time to address the “passive” in passive video balun.   Baluns may be passive or active.  An active video balun is much like the passive video balun with one distinction:  The active video balun requires power.  Usually, most active baluns use 12 VDC, the same type of power that the digital video system uses for the cameras.

Active video baluns, depending on the type, etc. like the one used in our example above of the passive balun that got 1,000 – 1,200 foot range, would be capable of boosting the signal on Cat5E upwards to a length of up to 4,000 – 5,000 feet.

Security Camera King offers a wide variety of passive video baluns to suit your needs.  Below is a partial list of our available baluns and a short description of each:

  • - Product# BALUN-P.  Passive video balun with BNC connector on one side and Cat5E connector (RJ45) on the other;
  • - Product# BLUN-4.  A passive video balun that can handle 4 different cameras at the same time.
  • - Product# SVU-PR8.  8 channel passive CCTV receiver hub with female BNC outputs.
  • - Product# SVU-PR16.  16 channel passive CCTV receiver hub with female BNC outputs.
  • - Product# BALUN-V.  Single channel passive video balun with video and power.  This balun is not powered, it truly is passive.  The power connection provided is for continuing your power supply past the balun by using one pair of wires from the Cat5E cable.  Saves time so you don’t have to cable separate power supply wires.

This should give you a good idea of what passive video baluns are and what they do.  If you have any additional questions please contact one of our security experts.