A DVR is short for Digital Video Recorder. I won’t bore you with the technical definition, but rather here is a simple explanation of the definition of a DVR as it applies to the security industry. A DVR is an electronic component that is used to record the video from a security camera. Each security camera is connected to the DVR using coax cable and BNC connectors. The video transmission is then compressed and stored on a hard drive. A DVR is different from the older time lapse VCR’s because it stores the data digitally on a hard drive rather than on a VHS tape. In most cases a DVR will be able to store day, weeks, months or even years of video before it begins to record over itself. This avoids the necessity of switching out tapes.
Another benefit of a DVR is the fact that you can often search for video by date and time, or by event. Searching by date and time is much easier than the old VCR systems because it means you don’t have to sit there and fast forward or rewind through hours of video to find an event. You can just simply search the specific date and time and you will find the video instantly. Many DVRs are also able to only record motion events that both conserves storage space and makes it easier to find the video you are looking for.
Lastly, most of the modern DVRs have a built in web server that allows you to connect to the DVR remotely over the internet. This means you can connect to the DVR from another PC and view your security cameras.