Choosing Cameras for Your Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) System

CCTV or closed circuit television systems have become a vital part of our lives due to the technological advancements of this age. With insecurity concerns on the rise, almost every home and office needs surveillance just to make sure you can replay events should anything go wrong. As a result of the high demand for CCTV systems, many brands have emerged. This makes it difficult for persons without much technical knowledge to make the right choices when shopping for CCTV systems.

Some Factors to Consider When Picking On Cameras

There is a wide range of CCTV cameras but mainly in 2 categories. These categories are analogue and Internet Protocol (IP). IP cameras are those that are connected to the video recording device through the CAT6 type of cabling while the analogue ones connect to the recorder using the coaxial cable and standard 12 volts direct current (DC) or 240 Volts alternating current.

Among factors to consider when choosing cameras for your setup include

• The type of image you need to capture

• The location or area under surveillance

• The detail you need to capture

• The budget for your entire setup

Some people need images for proper identification such as vehicle license plates while others just want to capture an image that can give an idea of the events taking place. For those looking for specific detail from the footage, the type of camera used must be one that can get the said detail in accuracy. Such situations may be the determining factor between a choice of fixed lens cameras and varifocal cameras and in some cases even the pan, tilt and zoom (PTZ) cameras.

Varifocal cameras are always better designed for situations where you may need to zoom in on an image and still see a picture with good resolution. They will however come at a slightly higher cost as compared to the fixed lens cameras. Fixed lens cameras on the other hand are more affordable but will not be able to expand an image while still keeping the resolution intact. PTZ cameras are the most effective but are also the highest in pricing. The high cost of PTZ cameras are as a result of their design. They can always rotate in different directions and can cover 360 degrees. They can as well be programmed to rotate in specific sequence or even to follow the direction of any motion depending on the brand and model.

Installing cameras in outdoor situations demand extra precaution. This is because such cameras may be exposed to tougher conditions and even vandalism. For this reason, you may have to opt for cameras with extra enclosures to prevent damage from rain and animals such as birds and cats that may be tempted to patch on them. It is also important to note that the type of cabling required for outdoor cameras is different from that of cameras used indoors. For internet protocol cameras, you must use outdoor CAT6 cables also known as shielded twisted pair (STP). The indoor cameras on the other hand can use unshielded twisted pair (UTP)

Varifocal versus Fixed Lens Cameras

Perhaps a major reason to always go for the costlier varifocal lens cameras is the fact that their lenses can always be tuned to capture images even after installation. Sometimes the environment under surveillance may change after cameras have been installed. If this happens with fixed lens cameras, you must get back to site and physically position the cameras again. Varifocal lens cameras however make it easy because one can easily log in to the camera and expand or move it to capture the ideal image without having to change the physical position.