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DVR & Security Cameras Help

Old 12-14-2010, 03:16 PM
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Default DVR & Security Cameras Help

Looking for opinions out there about who makes the best medium price security cameras and dvr for home security. I want color, ability to zoom, record, see in darkness for 75', etc. Also what brand of DVR is best for this application. Want to be able to record, see with pda, pc and control video cameras when away. Let me know what I am missing or should have.
Thanks, Skip
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Old 12-14-2010, 06:18 PM
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oooookkkkk... let see, my experience is mostly withhigh end comercial/enterprise DVR/cameras, sobear withme, because i'm not really "up-to-date" on the residential market.

first let me start with this... it all depends on you application....what do you want to do? what do you want to see? what do you want to use it for?

75' feet in darkness: you will hate this answer but darkness is relative... by this I mean how dark is your darknes??? I assume that you are looking for your back or front yard... so... is it any street ligth at all??? I would say that any camera that would allow you to see 75' feet away in the dark is going to cost you probably 1K. If I'm not mistaken most cameras see probably 35 to 40 feet at the most, in no light condition unless you get into FLAIR, but thats another whole different game.

I would sugest a day/nigth camera with a mothionactivated flood ligth. so if is any movement the ligth goes on and the camera is recording wherever is moving.

another thing... you mentioned zoom. "Normally" if you want zoom, you have to go to a ptz camera. PTZ stands for Pan-Tilt-Zoom. this cameras are much more expensive than the fixed cameras, and you need a DVR that would support it. Also PTZ are mostly used for real time security( imagine a mall looking and following posible shoplifters), and most home cctv systems are more leaning towards forensic security( wich means basically after-the-fact,for example you want to know whose dog is shitting in you front yard)

have to go but I could answer more question if you want...
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Old 12-14-2010, 07:39 PM
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to get any decent picture out very far you need better then entry level resolution. I'd go for more than 480lines.

I played around with one at Costco recently, and the 480 line camera was blurry (probably couldn't read a license plate at 30 ft).
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Old 12-15-2010, 04:16 AM
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To add to what everyone else said,You can now host video on the cloud with secure access and smart phone remote viewing. No need for DVR anymore with IP cameras and hosting in the cloud.
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Old 12-15-2010, 06:05 AM
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I have had pretty good luck with Bosch DVRs, I prefer more camaras to movable or cameras that follow motion.

Last edited by MacCTD; 12-15-2010 at 07:06 AM.
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Old 12-15-2010, 06:49 AM
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Originally Posted by C Skip R View Post
Looking for opinions out there about who makes the best medium price security cameras and dvr for home security. I want color, ability to zoom, record, see in darkness for 75', etc. Also what brand of DVR is best for this application. Want to be able to record, see with pda, pc and control video cameras when away. Let me know what I am missing or should have.
Thanks, Skip
What do you consider medium priced? I have a Lanex 16 camera DVR at home. The DVR itself is around $3k just for the box. Two drive bays with 700 gigs storage max. I have one 250 gig drive that gives me about 20 days worth of storage on 7 cameras, depending on the settings. I'm on 7.5 frames per second, high res, and drop all images without motion after 7 days, to give you an idea of storage requirements. I use cannon color cameras with zoom and focus, but you set that manually once, as I can't zoom on the fly. The box is ip based for access, but the cameras are coax.

Recording 75 feet in darkness is a stretch, and any security expert will tell you if you have darkness, you need better lighting. Unless you have a huge home, you don't pan and zoom in a residential setting. Blind spots are reduced with more cameras and better placement. My exterior cameras are visible in domes, and interiors are hidden as to not spook my guests knowing they are being recorded sitting on my couch.

Questions you need to answer for yourself.

How many days of storage do I want?
How many cameras, interior and exterior in enclosures?
How hard is it to pull cable to where you want cameras?
Do you have an alarm system now? If not get that first.

There are many other features with a Lanex. It's connected to my alarm, so a trip will increase frames per second recorded. The drive is encrypted, so images cannot be photoshopped, ie.. admissible in court as evidence.

I set it all up myself, but it would be about 6-7k installed by a pro, to give you an idea. Good surveillance is not real cheap. Cheap surveillance is not real good.
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Old 12-15-2010, 08:00 AM
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Been 40 years in the secutity system/video surveillance business here in Delaware, aznd can say that the advice you got here is good. Camera prices have dropped over the years, but you still need to 'spend the money' for a camera to do what you are asking.

You could go to BJ's, Sams Club or Costco, and buy their 8 or 16 camera/DVR package, and have reasonable video surveillance on the cheap. If you want pro-quality, you really need to ramp it up, and spend 5 times as much.

That being said, excellent bang-for-the-buck, pro quality equipment can be found in Speco cameras and recorders. I also have installed a handful of DigiMerge DVR's, and they are very easy to set up, and use the latest video compression algorithyms, for best image record quality. The DigiMerge supports DDNS remote viewing, and can also be viewed on an iPhone. Others may offer the same, but check into it. If not, you can still use a DNS re-naming/hosting service.

So, you need to determine what your budget is, your technical capability, wiring, etc., and proceed from there.
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Old 12-15-2010, 08:52 AM
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I would recommend Pelco, they are not cheap, but one of the best. This is not going to be a question that most here will be able to help you with. Lots of variables. Here is a site that caters to questions like you have. http://www.cctvforum.com/viewforum.php?f=5
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Old 12-15-2010, 12:30 PM
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I second Speco, I have installed a good amount of their products.

David
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Old 12-15-2010, 01:10 PM
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Send me your contact info, I will help you since this is what I do for a living and I work near your area.
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Old 12-15-2010, 01:12 PM
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I have been running Vitek Cameras and DVDRs and they have been flawless.
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Old 12-16-2010, 05:21 AM
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Originally Posted by r.waddill View Post
To add to what everyone else said,You can now host video on the cloud with secure access and smart phone remote viewing. No need for DVR anymore with IP cameras and hosting in the cloud.
Excuse my ignorance but what is the cloud? Is it a remote site for recording?
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Old 12-16-2010, 05:32 AM
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Thanks guys for all your advice. The wiring for cameras was installed when house was built (this year). It is located on the intracoastal. Have been thinking of using Speco dome mounted cameras. I will only have 4 cameras initially. Price is not as important as quality for this setup. Days of storage would be at least a week for DVR.
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Old 12-16-2010, 06:13 AM
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Are you running your cameras constantly or are you setting them for motion activation. I now have mine set for motion activation with some trees and limbs that trip the cameras blocked out. Motion is the way to go if you can set them that way. My cameras will pick up motion out to 75-100ft or so depending on the location..
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Old 12-16-2010, 08:04 AM
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Originally Posted by C Skip R View Post
Excuse my ignorance but what is the cloud? Is it a remote site for recording?
Its simple instead of hardware and a DVR you would have your video hosted for you at a secure remote site. You would have access to your video from any PC,Laptop,smartphone that has an internet connection.
You could install the IP cameras yourself it is literally one button to touch the cameras connect to the secure remote servers and you are done. No programing nothing.
you just pay a small monitoring fee monthly.
check your pm
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Old 12-16-2010, 08:11 AM
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Sams Club $850. Does everything you mentioned. got it set up in less than 2 hours. don't know why i waited so long.

..............bought it after someone walked up a long walkway to our secluded front porch and stole some teak furniture in the middle of the night (while we were home).
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Old 12-16-2010, 03:40 PM
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Your house has to be wired with cat5 cable to use the IP camera, otherwise use a hi-res dome such as the speco HT8 series. I have a new DVR, customer cancelled the job after equipment was ordered.

Send me a pm we can talk about what you need.
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Old 12-16-2010, 06:34 PM
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http://youtu.be/PD3kbDa2sOQ
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