So, you want a new Security Camera System for your home or business. Or, you just need to update an existing one but you don’t know exactly where to start. Here is a simple and useful checklist/flowchart that will take you step by step to help you determine the best plan of attack to tackle your Security Camera System needs.
Maybe you have an existing analog CCTV system using D1 or 960H cameras with standard coaxial cable.
Do you have an existing security system?
For years, the standard has been RG59 coaxial cable with BNC connectors to hook up your CCTV system. Today, many newer homes and businesses have been or are being wired with CAT5, CAT5E or even CAT6.
Do you have any existing usable cable?
You have options! The next step depends on your budget and what your ultimate goal is. The best case scenario is that you have an existing CAT5/5E/6 infrastructure since that will allow you to use the latest technology and continue to grow. If you’re not pre-wired with network cable and don’t want to break the bank running new CAT5/5E/6 cable all over your property, then hopefully you have RG59/RG6 coaxial cable. If you have no cable and need to start from scratch, I’m going to suggest that you do it right the first time and have CAT6 cable installed since applications running at 1GB/s are already putting strains on the bandwidth capabilities of CAT5E.
With existing or new CAT5/5E/6, your best choice for a recording device will be an NVR (aka Network Video Recorder). You would use an NVR along with IP network cameras. The NVR uses your local network to send and receive data and is ideal for remotely monitoring your surveillance system from your computer, tablet, or smart phone all while recording to a hard drive. Because IP cameras are on the cutting edge of surveillance technology, your security system, anchored by a quality NVR allows you to include new cameras with more advanced features. While most IP cameras and NVRs are compatible, you should always check with your surveillance system supplier to ensure all of your products will work together properly. In case you didn’t already know, when using an NVR and IP cameras, you have the ability to power your cameras through the network cable! This is an excellent benefit that eliminates the need to run an additional 18/2 power cable. We have packages like this 8 channel NVR with built in POE that are ready to plug in and go!
Do you have coaxial cable? Ideally you would have RG6 coax cable since the larger conductor, thicker dielectric insulation and aluminum braid shielding help to more effectively handle Ghz level signals. If you don’t and have an older CCTV system and you have been using RG59 coaxial, you have a couple of options. First, confirm that you have continuity in your coaxial cable runs. Once you’ve done this, you can choose between a few options for DVR’s.
The first option is a standard analog DVR or Digital Video Recorder that records at a 960H resolution (960×480). These are still widely used and are considered a reliable option due in part to the stability of the software (usually Linux) that is embedded in the chip. Capable of achieving resolutions up to 960H, this is an inexpensive upgrade from traditional D1 systems. The images are saved directly to a hard drive that we install before shipping when you purchase a hard drive along with your DVR. We’ll help you choose the number of channels (4-32) of the DVR that you need depending on the size of your property, what kind of coverage you want/need and any future expansion plans! A great place to start is with this complete 8 channel 960H DVR System!
Option number two is one of the newest and most interesting technologies called High Definition Composite Video Interface or HDCVI for short! The HD-CVI DVRs are capable of achieving resolutions up to 1080p and frame rates up to 30fps. This is the best choice if you want higher resolution images without having the expense of running CAT5/5E/6 cable. HDCVI technology helps you to realize multiple signal technology over one cable with video, audio and control signals all through the same coax cable! On top of that, HDCVI allows for longer distance cable runs (1600 feet or more) with no need for repeaters! HDCVI DVR’s MUSTuse HDCVI technology cameras made specifically to be used with them. Take a look at this complete 8 channel 1080p HDCVI package.
Last in your choice for DVRs are the MOTHER OF ALL DVRs…the Hybrid or the Tribrid! The Hybrid gives you the best of both worlds. You can combine 960H analog AND IP Network technologies for the most flexible system available. Along with all of the best features of both technologies, the coolest feature by far is the ability to DOUBLE the amount of cameras you can record (not available on all DVR’s/NVRs). That’s right! With the 16 channel HYBDVR-FE016-DH-160 you can record 16 analog cameras AND 16 IP cameras simultaneously if you choose! While the Tribrid doesn’t give you the ability to double the channels, it steps it up another notch and gives you the option of HDCVI in addition to Analog and IP Network.
You know what type of cable you have and what your choices are for a recording device. Now you need to figure out how many cameras you are going to need. With Google Maps we can see an aerial view of your property and we can help you decide the best placement of cameras to give you the maximum coverage! As far as choosing the type…THAT can be overwhelming! But, when you choose our products, we will help you every step of the way and that includes deciding on camera types and options like bullets, domes, indoor, outdoor, PTZ, auto-tracking, night vision (IR), WDR, varifocal zoom, etc. etc.
Let’s pick some cameras!
You’ll be utilizing CAT5/5E/6 cable so you’ll be using an NVR and you will need to purchase IP Network Cameras. As I said before, the choices can be overwhelming but unlike the soda aisle with ten different types of the same brand, you don’t have to make uninformed choices! Let’s see what type of options you have.
IP Bullet Cameras
IP Dome Cameras
IP PTZ Cameras
You have RG59 or RG6 coaxial cable and you have a choice between Analog and CVI. Either way, we have pre-designed systems ready to ship or a helpful staff that will guide you through everything you need to know to help you make an informed decision based on your needs!
Analog Bullet Cameras
Analog Dome Cameras
Analog PTZ Cameras
That covers standard analog cameras over coaxial cable! Now let’s check out some HDCVI cameras and remember, these MUST be used with HDCVI DVR’s!
CVI Dome Cameras
CVI PTZ Cameras
Don’t forget about the incidentals like cables, connectors and power supplies! That’s the easy part! Hopefully you have a better idea of what you need to put together a Home or Business Security System but if you still need help . . . we’re here! Just give us a call at 866-573-8878!