When trying to figure out which DVR (Digital Video Recorder) to choose, it’s not a matter of which security system is better – It’s a matter is which is right for your personal and specific application.
So, the question of which is better – PC-based DVR or standalone DVR?, the answer boils down to your application and the user. What are using the Security System for? It is true that on the surface and at first glance, both the PC Base DVR and the Stand Alone DVR appear to do the same things – capture and store video. The truth of the matter is that it all boils down to one thing – application.
When Digital Video Recording first began, PC-Base Security systems were the only choice. Digital Capture cards would be inserted and installed into a PC and it would then be used as a Security System.
When the concept and inception of Stand Alone DVR began, an additional option was available for consideration. Stand Alone DVR System are Linux embedded systems that are smaller in size and simpler to build with less components than a PC tower. This fact can be a seen as both positive and negative.
The positive aspect of having different components in a security system is their flexibility. PC-Base Systems are upgradeable and expandable, so it’s easy to add or change hard drives, DVD burners, CD burners, etc. Because of this flexibility, applications with complex security needs may find the PC-based DVR to be the better option.
An additional benefit of the PC-based DVR is the compatibility IP Network Cameras. Users can easily install the IP Network Camera software in their PC Abased DVR System. While more and more standalone DVRs are adapting to a hybrid approach of combining analog cameras with IP cameras, those systems are still in the production phase. IP cameras also need for more storage due to the enormous amount of pixels comprising the crisper images and again, easily resolved by upgrading or adding more hard drives to the PC Base System.
The negative aspect of PC-Base Systems having more components, is that these components can become defective and add cost to replace, not to mention the issues that PC Base systems have by being susceptible to viruses, hacking, worms and problems with operating systems that occur frequently.
Users comfortable and used to PC computers often prefer PC Based Systems and like its upgradability and flexibility.
TV and movies have warped the public perception regarding surveillance systems and their abilities. Years ago I watched an episode of CSI, in which a simple camera had the ability to enhance a license plate video from 200 feet away without pixilation. It made me wonder if this is how the public perceives the ability and features of analog cameras? It was confirmed when customers continued expecting an analog (and more affordable) system to deliver the results of what they have seen on television. Analog systems do have all the basic features you would expect from a security system (recording, playback and remote viewing). Much of what has been shown by such shows in the past was at the time, fiction. Today, most of the features are in fact possible and available for public purchase for quite some time.
IP (Digital Network) systems and cameras have the features that were once “only in the movies”. The digital recording can in fact enhance a recording of a license plate from 200 feet away without pixilation. IP cameras can be installed without running cable and provide extreme high resolution.
Analog Security systems and cameras, while sufficient for small business and residential applications, have reached the end of their evolution and cannot compete with high resolution Digital IP Surveillance Cameras that are needed for bigger applications with the need for more advanced features.
Certain features, such as recording rapidly moving objects, such as a speeding car has been a challenge for analog systems. A rapidly moving object recorded by a traditional CCTV system will appear blurry. This occurs because an analog video signal, interlaces to create the images. This is a technique developed for analog TV monitor displays (made up of visible horizontal lines across a standard TV screen). In such a case, only an IP System will be able to record the speeding car with no distortion.
The name for CCTV systems – DVR (Digital Video Recorder) is somewhat confusing but not intentionally misleading. Analog CCTV DVR’s do record digitally and are better than VHS based systems, but true digital picture and performance can only be accomplished by using IP systems and cameras.
As analog systems are still popular and more affordable, depending on your application – IP Cameras may be what you need to get exceptional detail and clarity and many more features that traditional analog systems cannot provide.
Next time you watch an episode of law and order and exceptional security footage is used to identify a suspect – you can expect the system is an IP Digital system and not merely fiction used for the story.
I have always been a science fiction fan. I love the Science fiction classics, such as blade runner, Star Wars, and 2001: A Space Odyssey. Star Trek was a favorite. I found it fascinating. The technology shown seemed so far from the current reality that I did not imagine that I would live to see it implemented in my lifetime.
I was wrong. Numerous technological advancements have become a normal part of today’s society. In the movie “Blade Runner”, a 3D enhancement machine is used to enlarge at many angles a high resolution picture. At the time such a machine was part of fiction. In CCTV we see such advancements – PTZ (Pan Tilt Zoom) cameras that can zoom in from a distance, IP cameras that can enlarge a photo digitally.
The newest advancement in CCTV security systems and cameras is the HD-SDI (high definition serial digital interface) technology. The HD-SDI provides for a much higher resolution and sharper images than ever before. Up to recently, IP Digital Network systems and cameras were the leaders in the CCTV world. The digital resolution was much higher and therefore sought after. IP systems installation and cabling are different than regular CCTV Coax applications. This means, that in order to set up an IP digital system to replace an existing analog system, new cabling would need to be run and a large budget would have to be available to cover the cost of the much more expensive system and cameras. Using HD-SDI Systems and cameras, the user can keep the existing coaxial cable and simply upgrade the hardware (system and cameras). The HD-SDI systems can capture 1080p resolution video using the existing coaxial cable used by analog CCTV cameras.
This new technology opens doors to simply upgrade ones system instead of having to uproot the entire application and start from zero. This option is less of a hassle and saves money. The HD-SDI installs just like analog, so no training is required. To be able to provide 720p and 1080p high definition video over the same RG59 or RG6 coaxial cable that is used in traditional CCTV applications is an amazing improvement and a new age in CCTV installations.
In addition to the option of using existing run cabling, HD-SDI also provides higher resolution than ever before. Till today the highest resolution has been 704 x 480, which is referred to as D1 resolution. HD-SDI cameras are capable of true HD 1080p resolution (1920 x 1080).
Have you ever wanted to watch the video recorded by your CCTV cameras in the same high resolution as your television provides? Well, this new HD resolution does just that. Just as you’re accustomed to viewing motion pictures in high definition, you have the same option with your cameras.
With HD-SDI, all brands of systems and cameras work with one another. This allows for the freedom to choose cameras from different brands and manufacturers to all work on one application.
HD-SDI is unique in another capacity – It’s a closed system. The HD-SDI systems and cameras will continue to work, even if the network happens to go down. So, functionality isn’t an issue with HD-SDI DVR’s and cameras.
The variety of options that is now available in CCTV, allows the consumer more freedom in choices and the ability to acquire a security system fitting almost every budget.
We may not be able to be transported from place to place as in Star Trek, or travel through the universe in the speed of light, but in the CCTV world we have definitely come a long way.
How to choose a hidden camera?
When choosing a hidden camera, you need to consider the location that it will be set up. The point of using the hidden camera is to be able to have a view and recording without the camera being noticed.
There are numerous Spy Cameras to choose from. Choose one that most fits your surroundings. In locations such as offices, restaurants, bars, markets and stores there are several hidden cameras that would integrate naturally into their surroundings. For example, almost all locations have smoke detectors, so Smoke Detector Hidden Cameras are used often. You can either replace your existing smoke detector or add an additional one. Smoke detectors are common, so are unnoticed. The DM-HI-SMK-620 is an actual functional smoke detector with a board camera built in. The camera is installed on a ceiling and is ideal in locations where there is a drop ceiling (with the removable tiles).
Its view is at a 45 degree angle which covers an entire room or hallway on its own. See viewing angle:
An additional hidden camera that is used often is the motion sensor camera. Most locations have alarm systems and there are motion sensors in pivotal locations. A Motion sensor hidden camera is easy to add to such an application as it will blend in with the others easily. It is usually installed in a corner of a wall so the height of the ceiling is irrelevant. It can be mounted at any height (ideal at 8 to 12 feet above the floor) and has the same viewing angle as the Smoke Detector camera at 45 degree. It is very easy to install.
See front and back:
In addition, the Fire Sprinkler Hidden Camera, the DM-HI-35HS is discreet and works as a camera that would be centered in a room with a birds eye view, perfect for monitoring cash registers.
There are also all-inclusive recording device hidden camera Dvr’S. These are Spy/Hidden cameras that are not connected to a Stand Alone DVR System or a PC Base Ssytem but have an SD Card inserted that records the data and a rechargeable battery to provide power. These cameras are used when running cable or hiding a DVR System is unrealistic. They are also an easy and inexpensive solution. These cameras would be stationed in a home or office in a specific room and point of interest.
Examples of these all-in-one camera DVR’S=
DM-HI-TISSUE-TBX (Tissue Box All In One Hidden Camera):
The DM-HI-CLOCK-32-SL (Alarm Clock Radio All In One Hidden Camera):
The DM-HI-PIR-DVR (Motion Sensor All In One Hidden Camera):
You want answers to your questions? Spy/Hidden Cameras will provide you the answers.
How efficient is your employee performance when you’re not at your business? Are those working at your store stealing from the cash registers? Is your nanny taking good care of your baby? Is your elderly relative being treated well by the paid caregiver? Do you suspect your housekeeper is stealing from you?
You can’t be everywhere at once and you want to find out the answers to your questions privately. Hidden Spy Cameras are the easy, inexpensive and effective solution.
It is known that employee efficiency at work goes down when they are not being monitored. They spend time online, social networking, spending time on personal calls, taking longer breaks and are greatly less effective. The trick is using cameras hidden in an object that is common in the setting it will be installed in. To have the objects unnoticed and integrate naturally into the environment. In offices, Hidden Fire Sprinkler Cameras and the Motion Sensor Cameras are the most commonly used. They can either be added to the setting or replace existing smoke detectors or motion sensors (they are actual smoke detectors and motion sensors as well as cameras).
Owning a store or bar is hard enough without having to worry about the employees working the cash registers. It is difficult to keep track of the cash flow at a bar on a busy night. Hidden cameras can quickly and discretely weed out dishonest bartenders working the cash register. Same issue occurs in 7/11 locations, gas station stores and retail shops. Employers have a difficult time figuring out or proving if their employees are in fact putting the $5 bill in the cash register and the $20 bill in their pocket.
You may have maternity leave after you give birth to your child but at some point need to go back to work. When that happens, you have few choices. The most common option is hiring a nanny. Even though you may have glowing recommendations, referrals and back checks in regards to the new nanny, you will always be unsure of how well your child is being treated and well taken care of when you’re away from the house. Home cameras referred to as “Nanny Cams” catch infants mistreatment by nannies, as seen on the following video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vKiCVBAFKcQ. You can either view remotely from your office PC, from your phone when you’re out and about or playback later on from the actual DVR System to obtain the information that you seek. The cameras mostly used in homes are the Hidden Smoke Detector Cameras and the Motion Sensor Cameras .
Same application would fit a situation of a paid caregiver caring for your elderly relatives. Unfortunately, there are many cases where the caregiver is neglecting or mistreating their elderly patients. Family members are usually busy and cannot keep an eye on the situation. Hidden spy cameras are the perfect solution.
Every time the housekeeper leaves, you suddenly can’t find a favorite pair of earrings or part of your expensive silverware has been “misplaced”. There is a chance that your housekeeper has sticky fingers but you are uncomfortable to broach the subject as you are simply not sure and have no proof. Hidden/Spy Security Cameras placed in sensitive areas of the house can provide the answers to your suspicions.
Hidden Cameras are the perfect solution to discretely get the answers to your questions.
Hospitals throughout the US are known to be ahead in numerous medical fields, testing, discoveries and having the latest state of the art medical equipment. With all these improvements, the Surveillance systems seem to have been frozen in 1998. Many hospitals and healthcare facilities still have VHS systems that record directly to VHS tapes and often have cameras that view in black-and-white.
There are numerous reasons for utilizing a high end Security Camera Systems in hospitals. Security cameras in hospitals and medical facilities can prevent infant abductions, theft and dishonest claims. These systems monitor secure facilities, track who comes and goes to and from the hospital, view patients that need constant monitoring and track patient care. Surveillance systems have also been used as an observation and training tool. Hospital administrators understand that they have a need for security cameras as much for loss prevention as for security.
In an infant abduction attempt, security personnel view the attempted abduction in progress and can prevent it. Simultaneously, the cameras are recording the crime and providing undisputed evidence.
Theft has always been a serious problem for hospitals and medical facilities. Drug addicts often steal drugs from these facilities as they are easier to access. Security Cameras can not only deter such attempts but in addition, will have footage of the theft itself. Hospitals have also suffered from theft of medical equipment which is sold on the black market and is in high demand. In all these cases, security systems are proven to be essential.
Dishonest claims are a huge determent to hospitals and doctors. It seems doctors and hospitals are being sued left and right and only a handful of law suits are honest and have merit. The security cameras and their ability to provide concise proof have led to many cases being quickly solved without the hospitals needing to go to court. Most times the doctors and hospitals are absolved of liability due to the information provided by the system.
Many hospitals and medical centers have Labs and secure facilities that need to be constantly monitored. Cameras insure that only authorized personnel can enter and exit these facilities. In addition, there are critical care patients that need to be constantly monitored and the cameras are a cost effective tool.
If there was ever an application that cameras were essential, it is in hospitals. Hospital administrators are beginning to realize the necessity of such advanced solutions and beginning to upgrade their old systems.
There are many important reasons why schools have a definite necessity in having security systems installed throughout school grounds. Security systems prevent issues such as: vandalism, bullying, criminal activity and sexual predators. Up until recently, many schools had CCTV security systems installed throughout outdoor play areas, cafeterias, and hallways to mainly prevent and monitor vandalism. It turns out that cameras can prevent and monitor many other problematic issues.
Vandalism on school properties have been an issue for many years and school budgets have been applied in order to purchase and install security systems to minimize damage. The installation and use of security cameras have been proven to minimize vandalism, either by catching the perpetrator or deterring such activities from occurring in the first place.
Surveillance cameras have become essential in monitoring and preventing bullying as well. Bullying has always been an important issue in schools, but only recently has it become recognized as part of the school’s responsibility to monitor and discourage such activities. The Sunrise news station, which is located in Sydney Australia, reported a decrease in school bullying after cameras were installed to prevent vandalism (see: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DSgqR49ijMs).
Schools that have been investing their money on CCTV security camera systems are reassuring for many parents. A school willing to invest their money in security systems ensures that the general safety and security of their children are being addressed during schools hours, including after-school extracurricular activities and programs.
An important issue that has been overlooked many times are sexual predators. One of the biggest threats that school children face is the threat of sexual predators and pedophiles hanging around unobtrusively on school campuses or in parking lots. Camera system footages are very useful in tracking down predators or helping inform police about threatening situations in real time.
Criminal activity is also a problem occurring on school property and during school operating hours. Drugs being dealt on school grounds have been a highly problematic issue for many years. The presence of highly visible surveillance cameras at strategic locations, such as buildings and public areas/ school property premises, can prevent the dealing and usage of drugs. It is foremost a deterrent and of course a tool in apprehending those involved in such criminal activity and removing them from school grounds.
School security personnel monitoring the screens and viewing security camera positions can take real-time action in notifying law enforcement and evacuating children, faculty, and staff in case of emergencies, such as fires or other dangerous situations. The horrific murders that occurred at Sandy Hook Elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut is an example of an emergency situation in which quick evacuation would be a necessity. The cameras that are mostly used at schools are PTZ (Pan Tilt Zoom) Cameras. They can be controlled in real time and have a 360 degree angle view.