View Full Version : Security cameras

08-28-2009, 10:25 PM
I have searched the archives for the information on security cameras but i dont seem to be able to find what I am looking for. We use a system that is hooked up to our PC. Each card holds 4 cameras and they are not that expensive. i dont know the technical name for our system but the camera cables "lock" into the connector. We are expanding our security this year and was wanting to know if anyone has a recommendation for cameras.

08-28-2009, 11:01 PM
You are using what are referred to as "DVR" cards in the industry, they range from single to 32 inputs. The connectors you are talking about are called "BNC" (British Naval Connector).

As far as camera's go, auto iris is something to look for, cheaper cam's don't have them and will either be extremely dark at night (even with IR) or will be totally useless during the day if it's in a bright/sunny area. Generally, the higher the resolution the better. Cheaper camera's will be down to 330 lines of resolution, midrange you're around 420, higher end you'll find 480-550. Sony is common for quality CCD camera's. Other than that, pick the style that fits the area the best. Indoor dome's are going to be less expensive than outdoor domes or bullets for example. Fixed lenses are going to be less expensive than variable zoom, some less expensive cameras you can't even swap the lense, so you're stuck with whatever angle you get. You may want to put high-res camera's in certain spots where if you're covering the parking lot for basic things, you may not need to spend the coin on a high res cam.

Hope this helps.

08-29-2009, 09:15 AM
Thanks Brandon! Thats the info I was looking for. Is there a company anyone recommends for cameras?

08-29-2009, 05:20 PM
I'm quite partial to ebay. You just have to spend some time digging for what you're looking for. Being a charity haunt, I can spare an extra 15 minutes of my time to save a few bucks here and there.

08-29-2009, 06:48 PM
It has been awhile since I popped in and when I do A subject with I am familiar. I always believe there is no such thing as coincidences either.

Be VERY careful of eBay. Avoid like the plague this model, they are junk.
http://cgi.ebay.com/30-IR-LED-Night-Vision-Security-CCTV-Color-Camera-3H_W0QQitemZ200307598901QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_Defa ultDomain_0?hash=item2ea3436635&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14

ALL the vendors have dropped the prices on these just to unload them. Watch the bargains and when you order make sure the power supply is included. AS for connectors the BNC are the way to go.

This is a good system to consider if your wanting an indoor system. (be glad you caught me mid pay period or you would not know about them)

http://cgi.ebay.com/8-Q-See-Color-CCD-Security-Cameras-w-IR-night-vision_W0QQitemZ150368448296QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_ DefaultDomain_0?hash=item2302a86f28&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14

JoeDog, The Ghost Hunter

08-30-2009, 09:11 AM
You were referring to video capture cards for use in the computer.

One very important point to make is that any capture device, whether dvr based, pc based etc, should be rated at 28-30fps PER CHANNEL.

So a 4 channel capture card needs to be 120fps, or the capture is not "live" rather a jerky staccato compilation of frames.

Most cards are rated 30 FPS, and can have up to 32 inputs (via harness) for very low cost.
So 32 cams sharing 30FPS, each cam gets 1 frame per second...not useful.

Often you can have multiple card on a single system, especially 4 channel cards, which are optimized to use a number of system address autmagically. These will often permit you to install 4 of these cards for a 16 channel system.

Often these cards will offer software bundled with them that pack in a ton of features.
Such as:
Multi screen monitoring - the monitor is arrayed showing the live output of each enabled channel.
Motion detection - captures video only when a keyed area detects motion exceeding a set threshold. The keyed area can be the entire screen or reduced down to areas as small as a couple of inches.
Streaming - the ability to send live video out to the internet, and be viewed by people remotely.
Some systems create their own webstream and you need to open a port thru your firewall supplying the address for viewing and setting viewer permissions, others will make it so you can very easily embed the stream into your website.

There are many more features depending on the card. I only mention the ones that I feel most of us would take advantage of.

Be aware cards often only support 1 audio channel, either direct input or via the system sound bus. You can get multi channel audio input cards pretty reasonably to capture the audio if needed.

The capture cards do need large and often numerous HDs (especially when you want to capture multiple streams with sound) in the computer to store the captures. I always recommend you dedicate a machine specifically for this purpose.

Minions Web does offer:
Link - very affordable 4 channel 120 FPS video capture card (http://www.minionsweb.com/osStore/channel-video-capture-card-p-217.html)
Link - basic auto iris indoor outdoor video cameras with audio - B/W (http://www.minionsweb.com/osStore/video-camera-p-208.html)
Link - basic auto iris indoor outdoor video cameras with audio - Color (http://www.minionsweb.com/osStore/video-camera-color-p-209.html)
Link - We also created our IR LEDs illuminators for exactly this purpose in 3 sizes (http://www.minionsweb.com/osStore/advanced_search_result.php?keywords=ir+bulb&x=0&y=0)

I hope to get a line on a nice audio card with multi channel input for the store soon.
Currently I recommend