Our DVRs, or Digital Video Recorders, here at Techpro Security Products are incredibly versatile, with many features that are very useful. One of these features gives you the ability to have your DVR record video footage when it detects a motion event. This article is going to take a look at why you would want to take advantage of this, and how to set it up. There are actually a few reasons why it’s a good idea to have your DVR set up for motion based recording and only one reason not to have it set up to record this way.
In order to understand one of the reasons that motion based recording is a good idea is it helps to understand how the DVR stores your video footage. By default, our DVRs are set up to overwrite the oldest footage once all of your hard drive space becomes full. With a simple setting change you can set it up so that when your DVR’s hard drive is full, the DVR simply stops recording. The obvious danger here is that if you are not paying close attention to how full your DVR is, it may not be recording when you really need it to be. For this reason most of our customer leave it set up to overwrite the oldest video footage. If you have a reasonable amount of total storage space and your DVR is configured correctly, then you will be able to play back footage from weeks back.
The first reason why it’s a good idea to utilize motion based recording is that it will make more efficient use of your storage space. Instead of recording hours of video of a static camera view, it will only record when the camera detects motion. If it takes longer for your hard drive space to fill up, then it takes longer for your DVR to begin overwriting the oldest footage that you have stored. This will make it so that you’re DVR can pull up recorded video footage from further back in time, giving you more days to realize that an event has happened and that you want to have video of it stored in a location where it won’t be overwritten. If you think about it, any event that you’ll want footage of will have motion involved in some way (for example: an item being moved, a window breaking or a collision).
Another reason that motion based recording is a good idea is that it makes finding footage of a particular event, quicker and easier for the user. When you have your DVR set up to record twenty four hours a day and seven days a week, it will actually be saving your recorded footage in hour long blocks (although you can adjust this though the DVR’s menu system). This means that you will be looking through hours and hours of footage when you are looking for a particular event. If your DVR is set up for motion based recording and you go to pull up some recorded footage, it will show you a list of the motion events. Because of this, you will not have to watch hours of recorded video footage of a camera shot with nothing happening. The search interface will allow you to simply skip from one event where motion is happening to the next, until you find what you are looking for.
People that set their DVR up to record 24 hours a day / 7 days a week usually do it for one reason – they are concerned that their security cameras might not record some video that they really need to have. This worry is somewhat understandable but there are settings on the “Detect” page of our DVRs that allow you to customize the motion detection feature to suit the environment where you have the security camera system installed. From the “Detect” page you can adjust the motion detection sensitivity, block parts of a camera view from detecting motion, adjust how long after a motion event the DVR will continue recording and even set it up so that multiple cameras will begin recording even if only one of them detects motion. The DVR actually begins recording four seconds before it detects a motion event, although this setting can also be adjusted on the schedule page of your DVR.
There are a few setting changes that are needed before you can take advantage of this recording mode, but it is quick and easy to make these changes. The steps below are for when you are interacting with your DVR directly.
The first step in the process of getting your DVR set up for motion based recording is to locate the “Record” page of the DVR’s menu system. This is done by first right clicking anywhere on the screen when you are viewing the live video feeds from your cameras. When you see the small menu window show up, you’ll need to select “Main Menu” and then log in to your DVR. At this point you should be at the main menu of your DVR. The next step is to click on “Advanced” and then “Record”. Once you’re on this page you’ll need to make sure that all of the dots to the right of where it says “Schedule” are highlighted. After you have done this, click the “OK” button and right click anywhere on the screen. This will leave back at the “Main Menu”.
The next step in setting up motion based recording is to go to the “Schedule” page. This is done by first clicking on the “Setting” button and then the “Schedule” button. Once you’re on the “Schedule” page the first thing you’ll need to do is to select “all” from the drop down menu next to where it says “Channel”. You’ll also need to select “All” from the drop down menu next to where it says “Week Day”. The next step is to make sure that you enable the box that is located to the right of where “Period 1” and below where it says “MD”. That should be the only box that’s enabled in this area of the page. Once you have this page set up correctly you just have to click on the “OK” button and you’re done on this page.
For the last step in this process you’ll need to go to the “Detect” page. After you completed making all the setting changes on the “Schedule” page and hit the “Ok” button, it should leave you on the “Setting” menu. This means that all you have to do is click on the “Detect” button. Once you get to the “Detect” page, you should make sure that you don’t make any changes to the settings that are located to the right of where it says “Record Channel”. It’s also a good idea to make sure that the button to the left of where it says “Record Channel” is enabled for each of your channels. You’ll also need to make sure that the box next to where it says “Enable” is white.
Now you should be set up correctly for motion based recording. It’s a good idea to let your camera record for a while and then pull up some of recorded footage. If there is anything about the way this feature is working in your environment that you don’t like, you can make adjustments on the “Detect” page. These settings will give you an amazing level of customization for each of your surveillance cameras.