Posts Tagged ‘ Video Surveillance’



Home Video Security Systems

Written By:
Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010

Versatility, economic pricing, and Innovative technology are making home video security systems the number one choice for residential security and surveillance. Home video systems are no longer just for the extremely wealthy; and, their abundance of features and options makes them suitable for use in almost every environment and for any need.

Today’s home video security systems are basically component systems. There are several benefits to component systems, but the greatest is the ability to customize each component to suit your needs.

Thanks to great advances in the electronics industry, especially with semiconductors and integrated circuits, cameras can perform a variety of functions that 15 years ago would have been extremely expensive or simply unavailable. Processors and DVRs are becoming exponentially more powerful with each new design.

Typical home video security systems usually have from one to several cameras, a processor/Digital Video Recorder or DVR, and a monitor. The digital video cameras send their digital video signal to the processor/DVR. The processor converts the cameras’ signals into digital video files that can be viewed on the monitor and/or stored on the DVR for later viewing and/or archiving purposes.

Cameras
The cameras used for home video security systems are usually digital video cameras. These cameras produce high quality color video under normal lighting conditions. Cameras can be purchased with extremely high resolutions that create extremely high quality video.

Cameras are also available for special lighting conditions. There are cameras that can produce high quality video under conditions of very little visible light or cameras that can produce high quality monochromatic or black and white video under conditions of total darkness. These “low light condition cameras” may be useful for perimeter coverage of the home and yard and other outdoor applications.

Night vision infrared cameras are useful for monitoring areas outside or inside the house that are normally not illuminated at night. They are also great for use as a baby monitor camera, nanny cam, and monitor for rooms that are normally not lit such as closets, storage areas, garages, stairwells, etc. These cameras use infrared Light Emitting Diodes or LEDs to illuminate their target area with infrared light. This “light” is invisible to the human eye but can be seen with the camera’s special sensor.

Another useful camera option is a camera with a motion detector. These cameras have small infrared sensors that detect a change in infrared radiation from moving objects. These motion detectors are connected to a relay that can turn the cameras on and off. These can be used to record video only when motion is detected saving DVR storage space. They can also be used to alert you when someone or something is present.

Other available options for cameras include:
• Indoor or Outdoor use
• Wireless transmission technology
• Audio recording in addition to video
• Pan-Tilt-Zoom or PTZ functions that allow the camera’s position or field of view to change
• Hidden or disguised cameras (often used as nanny cams)
• IP or Internet Protocol ready cameras can transmit their images over the internet to anywhere in the world there is internet access

Processor/DVRs
This is the heart and brains of the system. It normally contains the utility that compresses the digital video files to make them smaller. There are many different options for different types of compression utilities. DVRs can also be purchased in a variety of storage capacity options. In addition, other “peripheral” items such as CD, DVD, or Flash card writers can be added to the units.

There are also home video security systems that eliminate the need for a processor/DVR and monitor. These systems utilize your personal computer for these functions instead, making the system all the more affordable.

IP camera home video security systems can be used to monitor the home when you are at work, on travel, or away for extended periods. They are also great for 24/7 monitoring by professional companies. They can eliminate the added expense of a proprietary camera system that would otherwise be required.

If you are interested in protecting your home with a home video security system talk with one our experts today.

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail

Low Light In Wall Surveillance Video Camera

Written By:
Wednesday, July 28th, 2010

A low light in wall surveillance video camera has a multitude of uses. It can be used to monitor your children to ensure their safety and well being; it can be used to monitor an office,; it can be used as a nanny cam to monitor your nanny and child when you are not present; it can be used to monitor individuals that work in your home; or it can simply be used to keep a watchful eye on your important property.

What exactly is a low light in wall surveillance video camera? There are several different cameras that can be classified as in wall cameras. Generally speaking, an in wall surveillance video camera is any digital video camera that is mounted such that it is either flush with the wall (inside the wall) or is mounted on the wall in such a way that its presence is normally disguised. So basically there are two types of in wall video cameras, unconcealed and covert.

Both types of cameras work the same way, the difference lies in how they are mounted on or within the wall. In addition, a low light digital video camera can capture full color high quality video using very little available visible light. Let’s take a look at how these special low light cameras operate first, and then we’ll discuss the different examples of in wall surveillance cameras.

Contemporary digital video cameras work by converting light energy into electrical energy that can be measured to produce a digital video signal. Digital video cameras do this by using one of two different electronic light sensing chips. One chip is called a Charged Coupled Device or CCD and the other is called a Complimentary Metal Oxide Semiconductor or CMOS.

These electronic chips are sensitive to light. The lens of the camera focuses the image on these chips which then convert the light energy into electrical energy and produce a digital video image. These chips can be manufactured to be very sensitive e to light; so sensitive in fact that they can produce high quality video footage in very low light conditions. These types of cameras are often called day/night vision cameras. Their sensitivity to light, that is, the lowest level of light that they can produce a clear image, is normally rated in Lux.

Lux is a unit of measurement of the intensity of light. Some low light or day/night cameras can produce images with as little as .002 Lux of light. That’s about the same amount of light available in the sky on a moonless, clear night.

Other low light in wall surveillance video cameras may actually be night vision infrared cameras. These cameras produce a high quality color video image in visible light conditions and use infrared light in low light or total darkness. These camera’s sensors are also sensitive to infrared light and usually use infrared Light Emitting Diodes to illuminate the target area. Although the camera’s sensor can see the infrared light, human eyes cannot making them excellent choices for covert low light monitoring.

There are several different examples or designs of low light in wall surveillance video cameras. Unconcealed types are normally installed flush with the wall, the majority of the camera and housing occupying the space behind the wall. The camera normally has a protective face plate that is somewhat flush with the wall and that covers the camera lens. There are even corner mount low light in wall surveillance cameras that can be installed in the corners of a room.

Covert low light in wall surveillance video cameras normally disguise the look of the camera or hide it all together. One examples of a covert in wall surveillance camera includes the wall clock camera. This camera looks like a typical office wall clock, and functions like one too. However, hidden within the face of the clock is an opening for the lens of a camera that is mounted inside the clock body.

Other examples of disguised in wall cameras include heating and air conditioning thermostat cameras, electrical face plate cameras, exit sign cameras, and smoke detector cameras. Thanks to modern technology digital video cameras can be manufactured so small they can be concealed in just about anything.

So if you need to keep an eye on some property, a room, an area, or an office that may not always be brightly lit, and you don’t want the camera to be obvious, consider purchasing a low light in wall surveillance video camera.

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail

Outdoor Motion Activated Security Camera System

Written By:
Thursday, July 22nd, 2010

An outdoor motion activated security camera system is an ideal choice for perimeter coverage of a home or business. In addition, motion activation is a conservative, economical choice that produces excellent video surveillance and security results.

What exactly is an outdoor motion activated security camera system? The description sounds fairly complicated but in reality the system is relatively simple. Anytime motion is detected, the digital video cameras switch on and begin recording video images. So if no motion is detected, the cameras shut off. This conserves digital video file storage space on a Digital Video Recorder or DVR since the system only records when motion is detected.

Let’s take a closer look at an outdoor motion activated security camera system. These systems are similar to any other digital video security system in that they consist of one to several cameras, a processor/DVR unit, and a monitor. The camera produces an electronic image and sends it along to the processor/DVR. The processor reads the camera data and uses it to create a digital video file. The digital video file may then be viewed on a monitor and/or stored on the DVR for later use.

Most digital video security systems will record constantly, that is 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. However, an outdoor motion activated security camera system only records when motion has been detected. There are several advantages to this type of system.

Many digital video cameras today are wireless; that is they do not have a coaxial cable that transmits the video signal to the DVR. Instead, these cameras have a built in transmitter and antenna that they use to send the signal via radio waves to a corresponding receiver. The receiver then passes the signal electronically to the processor/DVR. However, these wireless cameras still need a wire for a power supply.

To avoid the necessity of a power supply line and transformer, digital video cameras have been manufactured that can utilize rechargeable batteries. A digital video camera with wireless video transmission and rechargeable batteries is truly wireless. This type of camera is incredibly versatile in that it can be mounted almost anywhere without the concern for any type of cabling or wire attachment. However, continuous video capturing can run down the batteries after several hours making replacement with freshly charged batteries necessary. An outdoor motion activated security camera system can greatly extend the run time of rechargeable batteries, because the camera only captures video when motion is detected. Although a very small amount of energy is needed for the motion detector, the largest amount of drain on the battery is during video capture.

Another advantage of an outdoor motion activated security camera system benefits the DVR. A DVR is basically the same thing as the hard disk drive on a personal computer. DVRs come in a wide variety of storage capacities ranging from gigabytes to terabytes in size. Still, digital video files can take up tremendous amounts of storage space, even when COmpression/DECompression utilities are used to make the files smaller in size filling up the storage disk in a short period of time. A motion activated camera only records when motion is detected, which means the DVR is not required to store video files for a continuous 24 hours, unless motion is present for all of that time. Recording video only when activated by motion can greatly reduce the amount of storage capacity needed on the DVR.

How do outdoor motion activated security camera systems detect motion? These cameras are connected to a special sensor called a Passive InfraRed or PIR sensor. When an object passes in front of the sensor, the sensor can detect the change in infrared radiation. A relay connected to the circuit board of the sensor then switches the camera on. Most cameras turn off either after the motion is no longer detected or for a specified time period after the motion is no longer detected.

Some examples of uses for outdoor motion activated security cameras include parking lot monitoring, building entrance and exits, pet monitoring, and perimeter monitoring of homes, yards, buildings, and industrial areas.

An outdoor motion activated security camera system can save time and money. It can enhance the use of wireless, rechargeable battery operated cameras and it can conserve DVR storage space for use when it is most needed.

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail

Wireless Night Vision Outdoor Security Cameras

Written By:
Wednesday, May 12th, 2010

Wireless night vision outdoor security cameras are an excellent choice in providing security and surveillance monitoring for both businesses and residential areas alike. Recent advanced technologies in security camera manufacturing have yielded a high quality product with many interesting features at an affordable cost. Let’s take a look at some of the features available for wireless night vision outdoor security cameras and how they function.

Before we talk about wireless night vision outdoor security cameras we need to clarify or make the distinction between what is meant by a “night vision” camera and a day/night camera. Inside the camera is an electronic sensor called a Charged Coupled Device or CCD. Occasionally another electronic device called a Complimentary Metal-Oxide-Semiconductor or CMOS is used instead of a CCD. Both the CCD’s and the CMOS’s purpose is to convert light into electrons that can be monitored or manipulated to create digital images. Each device has its own set of benefits and detriments, but most security cameras employ the use of a CCD, especially when images are required when there is little or no available visible light.

This is true because CCDs can be manufactured that are very sensitive to light; so sensitive in fact that they can produce images from as little light intensity as that available on a moonless night in clear air, which is approximately 0.002 LUX. LUX is a unit that is used to indicate light intensity. A full moon on a clear night in geographical areas outside of the tropics produces light intensity of approximately 0.27 LUX. By contrast, full daylight that is not direct sun light produces 10,000 to 25,000 LUX. Cameras made with these sensitive CCDs are normally called day/night cameras, not night vision cameras. These cameras are designed to produce images in conditions with very little light (very low LUX), but cannot produce images in total darkness. Security cameras that can produce images in total darkness are called night vision or infrared security cameras.

Interestingly, the CCD sensor chip that is used to capture images from visible light is also inherently able to capture images made from infrared (IR) light. Infrared (IR) light is often thought of as the images produced by thermal radiation of objects, however, security cameras utilize what is called the near infrared spectrum. This light is in the 0.7 to 1.0 micrometer wavelength range and is invisible to the human eye. However, wireless night vision outdoor security cameras can “see” this light just like visible daylight and are therefore able to produce high quality images from it. The only difference is that the images produced are monochromatic or “black and white.”

How do wireless night vision outdoor security cameras illuminate their target area? Night vision security cameras normally have a series of infrared light emitting diodes or IR LEDs that are placed around the outside of the camera lens. These LEDs produce light, but only IR light in the near infrared spectrum; the exact light that the CCDs are inherently sensitive to. Therefore, to wireless night vision outdoor security cameras these LEDs in essence produce a spotlight that shines on the target area and illuminates it for the camera while at the same time the human eye is unable to detect the presence of any illumination. Generally, the more LEDs that surround the camera lens, the further the range of the IR camera, to a point. Premium night vision cameras can have effective ranges of up to 300 feet. It’s important to know what distances you will want to cover with your wireless night vision outdoor security cameras so that you can purchase a camera with an effective range.

Wireless night vision outdoor security cameras still require some wiring. When referring to a “wireless” camera, it usually means the camera transmit its images to a receiver using radio waves. This eliminates the need for coaxial cable to be run from each camera to the processor. However, the cameras still require wiring that provides them with the necessary power to operate.

Wireless night vision outdoor security cameras come with a variety of features and accessories. Cameras can pan, tilt, and zoom; they can record not only video but also audio; and they come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and types as well. In addition the system can be networked and viewed anywhere there is internet access.

Few security systems can offer the peace of mind as the constant monitoring provided by wireless night vision outdoor security cameras.

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail

Wireless Home Security Outdoor Camera Kits

Written By:
Monday, May 10th, 2010

Wireless home security outdoor camera kits can provide you with the peace and comfort of security while providing the ease of do-it-your-self installation. Not only are wireless home security outdoor camera kits easy to install, but they are affordably priced and easy to use as well.

Typical wireless home security outdoor camera kits contain all the components you need to set up your own residential security/surveillance system. They include the wireless security camera(s) and power supply, receiver, processor, and digital video receiver or DVR and/or software and hardware that can enable you to use your personal computer instead of the DVR.

Security cameras require a power source and a method of transmitting their images. This is normally done by wiring the camera with a power source which is provided in the kit, or by a rechargeable battery. The method of transmitting the images is by cabling coaxial cable from each camera to the processor or DVR. Wireless home security outdoor camera kits contain wireless cameras; that is, the cameras do not require the coaxial transmission cable. Instead, wireless cameras transmit their signals through an antenna to a receiver. This eliminates the need to run a coaxial cable from each camera to the processor, personal computer or DVR unit.

Most wireless home security outdoor camera kits utilize the 2.8 or 5.8 GHz radio band to transmit their images to a receiver. Wireless security cameras can transmit on several different channels and one receiver can receive up to 4 different channels. Their maximum range is approximately 700 feet line-of-sight. Line of sight means the ideal transmission route where nothing blocks the sight between the transmitting camera and the receiver. When objects are between the two, wireless security cameras still have a range of approximately 300 feet, depending on the environment.

In addition, these wireless cameras are rated for outdoor use. They may have an IP rating, which stands for ingress Protection. This is an International Electrical standard code that describes the amount of protection the camera unit has to external elements. Most wireless outdoor cameras will have an IP rating of IP66 or IP67 which means they are completely sealed and protected from the harmful effects of dry matter as small as dust and water sprayed as strong jets or when being submerged up to one meter in depth.

Wireless camera systems must have a corresponding wireless receiver to which the wireless cameras’ data is sent. The receiver is much like the base unit of a residential wireless telephone. However after it received the signal from the wireless cameras, it passes the digital information along to a processor, capture board, or your personal computer.

Here the signals are usually reduced in size using CODEC (COmpression DECompression) software or hardware. This process reduces the size of the digital file so that it can be easily handled by the processor and stored on some type of digital media. Digital video files can be extremely large such that without this process even the largest capacity storage drives can be filled to maximum very quickly.

Next the processed digital file is stored on a digital video recorder or DVR. A DVR is a magnetic storage disk just like the hard disk drive in a personal computer. In fact, with the proper software installed, a personal computer can be used to process and store the digital file instead. At some point, the DVR or computer hard drive will reach its maximum storage capacity. When this happens, the DVR or computer hard drive is instructed to begin re-recording over the data it originally saved first. If segments of this data require archiving or copying to provide to police departments for example, recorded material can usually be copied on a USB flash drive or an internal or external DVD writer.

Wireless home security outdoor camera kits have many applications about the home. They can be used to provide general security about the perimeter of the property, both day and night. They are useful for providing security and monitoring of driveways, garage or barn areas, and large, open yards. Tests have shown that just the known presence of a security camera can deter or diminish vandalism and theft.

So don’t hesitate to discuss with our digital security experts about the different types of wireless home security outdoor camera kits and determine which would best suit your needs.

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail