Buying Guide

When purchasing an IP surveillance system there are a few things you will need to consider. It is important to have all the information straight before purchasing so you can avoid the hassle of returns and exchanges later on. Some key points to consider are resolution, camera style and light conditions. Here are some general topics to consider when designing your IP surveillance system:

Camera Style- Dome and bullet are the main styles of surveillance camera. The main factor in deciding which style to go with will be how discreet you need the camera to be or where you need it to fit. The style of the camera does not typically affect the way it works unless it is a PTZ camera. Box style, fisheye and hidden cameras are also options. See our guide on camera types for more information.

Indoor/outdoor- IP weather ratings determine how resistant a camera is to water and dust. See our guide on what those IP ratings mean for a more in depth explanation. If the camera is placed outdoor in a rainy climate you will need the highest IP rating possible.  Vandal proof is also an important feature for outdoor use; these have a durable enclosure that can withstand heavy blows without breaking.

Resolution- The higher the resolution the more details you will be able to see. Also, the lens size will determine how wide a field of view the camera can capture.  If you want to be able to see a great deal of details in your surveillance footage such as faces and license plate numbers then we recommend going with the highest resolution possible.

Light conditions- Cameras placed in areas with varying light conditions with need a day/night filter. Also IR LEDs come in handy for areas that are monitored when there is little or no light. Wide dynamic range is another feature that balances the contrast between light and shadows so the exposure is clear and not blown out. Without these features the camera will not be able to capture clear images. Check the specs to make sure they are included before you buy a camera.

Device compatibility- IP cameras will only work with cabling and recorders that are also IP compliant. They need network cables and a network video recorder; they will not work with equipment that is specified for analog or HD-over-Coax systems.

Amount- The amount of cameras you need will depend on the size and dimensions of the area you need to cover. If you just want to survey a certain hallway or entrance then you may need only 1 camera but if you want to cover an entire building you will need several. Our expert technicians can help determine the number of cameras you need by taking a look at a schematic of the building or area.

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