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Posted 170 weeks ago
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Posted 170 weeks ago
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Posted 170 weeks ago

Common Surveillance System Mistakes Make Security Systems Worthless... Call 306.500.9284

Every day, criminals get away with crimes because surveillance systems are misconfigured or not working at all. Making sure that your security camera system is operating properly seems like such an obvious, routine task, but many business and home users simply set it and forget it, or make changes and don’t test them.

Here are a few common mistakes that are made frequently and could be prevented with more attention and testing.

Security System Mistakes that Could Cost You
Working cameras – those are important!
It may sound simple, but non-functioning cameras are a real problem out there. Has there been a power outage lately? Are they old? Were they there before you bought/leased the space? Regardless, you should make sure that each of your cameras is functioning properly at least once a quarter.

Cameras can hang, lose focus, or be fried by a power surge, and if you don’t check on them routinely, you won’t realize that they aren’t working until it is too late.

Is the DVR or NVR actually recording?
We always cringe when we hear this one. Something happens and there’s no video of it… but the system was on and working. Whoops, someone forgot to press record!

If you make any configuration changes, the power goes out, or someone else has been playing with the security system, always double check that it’s recording. We cannot stress this enough.

Is everything plugged in? You might be surprised!
I can’t tell you how many businesses and homes I’ve walked into and found security cameras completely unplugged from the DVR. This is particularly common in bars, restaurants, and other places where ownership may change relatively frequently or multiple contractors may have worked on the surveillance system. If you see unconnected coaxial/RG59 cable or DVR card dongles, don’t just ignore it.

We have seen cameras unplugged at the DVR or at the camera itself. Also, if there is an NVR involved, make sure it is connected to the network, and make sure hard drives are all plugged in and working so you capture the maximum amount of video without recording over old footage.

How long are you recording for? Is there enough space?
This is the dreaded scenario. Everything was working. The cameras were pointed in the right direction. The DVR was recording. But where’s the video? Uh oh, it was recorded over!

You should always make sure that your recording time and associated disk space match up so you can record the absolute maximum amount of video before the space is recycled. If you can’t record more than a few days of video, you may want to add additional hard drives or adjust the resolution and FPS, which we’ll talk about next, to accommodate longer recording periods.

This scenario can especially come into play if you are recording on motion detection and have a large variation in the amount of motion in your home or business from day to day.

Is your resolution and frames per second optimized?
Resolution and FPS play a huge roll in the clarity of the video, and the space that the video takes up on your recording device. Optimization is the key.

Depending on the cameras and DVR/NVR that you are using, you always want to optimize it so that you get the clearest and smoothest video possible while still being able to keep a good amount of video before your hard drive space is recycled.

Remember, if you don’t have the video because it was recorded over, you can’t catch the thief, but if the video is too low resolution and the frames per second is too low, the video will be of no use anyway. This is where investing in a high resolution, high FPS, high capacity DVR one time can save you all that heartache when something happens.

Are your CCTV cameras covering the right areas?
Was your surveillance system there when you moved in? Have you checked the areas that the cameras are covering? Were they installed to cover the old owner’s office, cash registers, etc? Is your layout different? If so, make sure to move and/or re-focus the cameras on the critical spots in your business or home.

Don’t forget to confirm that they are working and optimize the frame rates and resolution while you’re at it!

Are you using the right security cameras for the job?
How far away from the critical area is the camera? Is it high enough resolution to capture details at that distance? Consider upgrading if you don’t think you could identify a criminal on the video. Run some tests, you won’t regret it.

Is your home or business a potential night time target? Are your cameras infrared, and do they have sufficient infrared power to illuminate their entire field of view at night to capture details in complete darkness? Again, test it out. Can you make out yourself or what you are doing on the camera recording.

Are there enough cameras to cover your space? Entrances and exits may be enough, but many times having cameras from multiple angles and covering the entire area allow for a much better chance of catching criminal activity. You can use fisheye cameras to cover larger areas, and higher resolution box cameras to cover entrances and exits from both angles to catch details such as facial features, clothing, etc.

What are some mistakes you have made or witnessed?
We want to hear your stories! Comment and tell us about your funny, educational, or unfortunate surveillance camera system fail.

Posted 170 weeks ago
tumblr photo tumblr photo tumblr photo
Posted 170 weeks ago

Top 5 Security Camera System Features  .. 306.500.9284

Video security technology has drastically improved over the last twenty years and we have security camera system features now that weren’t even in their infancy just 10 years ago. If you haven’t shopped for a video security system before, the laundry list of standard features can be a bit daunting at first glance and you may feel in over your head. Don’t panic. Whether you’re looking for a small, entry level system to secure your home or your security needs are a little more complex, there are 5 security system features that every location will benefit from using.
Night Vision Monitoring
Being able to clearly capture details on video at night is a crucial component of any CCTV system. With the majority of break-ins, vandalism, and thefts occurring under the cover of darkness, being able to accurately identify the criminals or their vehicle is key in recovering lost possessions and worth its weight in gold in aiding the police in their investigation.

There are various ways that you can add night vision monitoring to your security system (cameras with infrared LEDs, IR cut filters, or software for true day/night) and though the method varies, the end result is all the same. The security cameras record in full color during the day and when the lighting level drops below a set point, the camera automatically switches over to night vision mode and operates independently of ambient light so your system will be able to capture footage even in total darkness.
Browse our selection of night vision CCTV cameras.
Infrared Security Camera Video Demo
This video demonstration shows the difference between a CCTV camera with and without its infrared LEDs active.

Weatherproof Camera Housings
As security camera technology becomes more advanced, the internal components also become more sensitive to dirt, water, and fluctuations in temperature. If you need to monitor the outside of your location, you will need weatherproof cameras or camera enclosures. CCTV camera housings protect against various intensities of dust and moisture that range from zero to complete protection. That level of protection is designated by its weatherproof rating.

The standard format for a camera’s weatherproof rating is IPxx with the first ‘x’ notating the level of protection against solid objects ranging from 0 (none) to 6 (complete protection) and the second ‘x’ for moisture protection which ranges from 0 (none) to 8 (complete submersion). When you’re looking for weatherproof cameras, be sure to find out their IP rating so they have the correct level of protection.

Weatherproof Rating Chart
weather proof camera rating chart
Motion Detection Recording
Monitoring around the clock so you don’t miss a single detail sounds fantastic on paper, but doing so will quickly max out your system’s hard drive and drastically shorten the amount of video you’ll have in your archive at any one time. By switching your video security system’s recording setting from “continuous” to “motion activated”, not only will you maximize your storage space, the video you do capture will be of actual events as they unfold rather than hours upon hours of an empty hallway.

Disclaimer: Motion detection recording can be triggered by swaying trees, passing traffic, and sharp shadows, but your system can be configured to ignore specific areas of the camera’s field of view and the trigger’s sensitivity can be adjusted as well.
H.264 Video Compression
H.264 is the latest and greatest video compression codec that greatly reduces the demands on your video recorder’s storage space and transmission bandwidth. (In a nutshell, it makes smaller video files and transmits them faster over your network.) Compared to the MPEG-4 video codec, recorders with H.264 compression use half of the bandwidth while transmitting the video at the same video quality.

To get the absolute most out of your video recorder’s storage space, we strongly recommend using a DVR / NVR with the H.264 codec and motion activated recording. It’s not uncommon for systems using this setup to be able to store at least a month’s worth of video on a single hard drive.
Remote Access on Smartphones / Tablets
Plainly put, Apple revolutionized the CCTV industry with the iPhone. Back in the old dark days of yore, you had to be physically on-site to view your security system’s video feeds. With the advent of the smartphone and broadband internet, your system is quite literally at your fingertips everywhere you go. With a free app that’s available on both the iTunes and Android marketplace, you can sign in, view archived video, and manage your surveillance system on your smartphone or tablet from anywhere with an internet connection.

This security camera system feature is peace of mind in your pocket. At any time of day or night, you can check in on your family, make sure your employees are working, double check that you turned off the lights before you went on vacation, or adjust your recording schedule for an upcoming holiday.

Recap
Picking up or building a CCTV system for the first time can be overwhelming with all the choices and configurations that are available to you. However, as long as your new video security system has the five features below, your home or business will be sitting pretty with a well-rounded, efficient system.

Night Vision Recording
Weatherproof Camera Housings
Motion Detection Recording
H.264 Video Compression
Remote Access via Smartphone / Tablet
We hope you enjoyed our article on the top 5 security camera system features that every location needs. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, we’d love to hear from you in the comments section below!

Posted 170 weeks ago

Posted 170 weeks ago
tumblr photo
Posted 170 weeks ago
tumblr photo tumblr photo tumblr photo tumblr photo tumblr photo
Posted 170 weeks ago

Common Surveillance System Mistakes Make Security Systems Worthless... Call 306.500.9284

Every day, criminals get away with crimes because surveillance systems are misconfigured or not working at all. Making sure that your security camera system is operating properly seems like such an obvious, routine task, but many business and home users simply set it and forget it, or make changes and don’t test them.

Here are a few common mistakes that are made frequently and could be prevented with more attention and testing.

Security System Mistakes that Could Cost You
Working cameras – those are important!
It may sound simple, but non-functioning cameras are a real problem out there. Has there been a power outage lately? Are they old? Were they there before you bought/leased the space? Regardless, you should make sure that each of your cameras is functioning properly at least once a quarter.

Cameras can hang, lose focus, or be fried by a power surge, and if you don’t check on them routinely, you won’t realize that they aren’t working until it is too late.

Is the DVR or NVR actually recording?
We always cringe when we hear this one. Something happens and there’s no video of it… but the system was on and working. Whoops, someone forgot to press record!

If you make any configuration changes, the power goes out, or someone else has been playing with the security system, always double check that it’s recording. We cannot stress this enough.

Is everything plugged in? You might be surprised!
I can’t tell you how many businesses and homes I’ve walked into and found security cameras completely unplugged from the DVR. This is particularly common in bars, restaurants, and other places where ownership may change relatively frequently or multiple contractors may have worked on the surveillance system. If you see unconnected coaxial/RG59 cable or DVR card dongles, don’t just ignore it.

We have seen cameras unplugged at the DVR or at the camera itself. Also, if there is an NVR involved, make sure it is connected to the network, and make sure hard drives are all plugged in and working so you capture the maximum amount of video without recording over old footage.

How long are you recording for? Is there enough space?
This is the dreaded scenario. Everything was working. The cameras were pointed in the right direction. The DVR was recording. But where’s the video? Uh oh, it was recorded over!

You should always make sure that your recording time and associated disk space match up so you can record the absolute maximum amount of video before the space is recycled. If you can’t record more than a few days of video, you may want to add additional hard drives or adjust the resolution and FPS, which we’ll talk about next, to accommodate longer recording periods.

This scenario can especially come into play if you are recording on motion detection and have a large variation in the amount of motion in your home or business from day to day.

Is your resolution and frames per second optimized?
Resolution and FPS play a huge roll in the clarity of the video, and the space that the video takes up on your recording device. Optimization is the key.

Depending on the cameras and DVR/NVR that you are using, you always want to optimize it so that you get the clearest and smoothest video possible while still being able to keep a good amount of video before your hard drive space is recycled.

Remember, if you don’t have the video because it was recorded over, you can’t catch the thief, but if the video is too low resolution and the frames per second is too low, the video will be of no use anyway. This is where investing in a high resolution, high FPS, high capacity DVR one time can save you all that heartache when something happens.

Are your CCTV cameras covering the right areas?
Was your surveillance system there when you moved in? Have you checked the areas that the cameras are covering? Were they installed to cover the old owner’s office, cash registers, etc? Is your layout different? If so, make sure to move and/or re-focus the cameras on the critical spots in your business or home.

Don’t forget to confirm that they are working and optimize the frame rates and resolution while you’re at it!

Are you using the right security cameras for the job?
How far away from the critical area is the camera? Is it high enough resolution to capture details at that distance? Consider upgrading if you don’t think you could identify a criminal on the video. Run some tests, you won’t regret it.

Is your home or business a potential night time target? Are your cameras infrared, and do they have sufficient infrared power to illuminate their entire field of view at night to capture details in complete darkness? Again, test it out. Can you make out yourself or what you are doing on the camera recording.

Are there enough cameras to cover your space? Entrances and exits may be enough, but many times having cameras from multiple angles and covering the entire area allow for a much better chance of catching criminal activity. You can use fisheye cameras to cover larger areas, and higher resolution box cameras to cover entrances and exits from both angles to catch details such as facial features, clothing, etc.

What are some mistakes you have made or witnessed?
We want to hear your stories! Comment and tell us about your funny, educational, or unfortunate surveillance camera system fail.

Posted 170 weeks ago
tumblr photo tumblr photo tumblr photo
Posted 170 weeks ago

Top 5 Security Camera System Features  .. 306.500.9284

Video security technology has drastically improved over the last twenty years and we have security camera system features now that weren’t even in their infancy just 10 years ago. If you haven’t shopped for a video security system before, the laundry list of standard features can be a bit daunting at first glance and you may feel in over your head. Don’t panic. Whether you’re looking for a small, entry level system to secure your home or your security needs are a little more complex, there are 5 security system features that every location will benefit from using.
Night Vision Monitoring
Being able to clearly capture details on video at night is a crucial component of any CCTV system. With the majority of break-ins, vandalism, and thefts occurring under the cover of darkness, being able to accurately identify the criminals or their vehicle is key in recovering lost possessions and worth its weight in gold in aiding the police in their investigation.

There are various ways that you can add night vision monitoring to your security system (cameras with infrared LEDs, IR cut filters, or software for true day/night) and though the method varies, the end result is all the same. The security cameras record in full color during the day and when the lighting level drops below a set point, the camera automatically switches over to night vision mode and operates independently of ambient light so your system will be able to capture footage even in total darkness.
Browse our selection of night vision CCTV cameras.
Infrared Security Camera Video Demo
This video demonstration shows the difference between a CCTV camera with and without its infrared LEDs active.

Weatherproof Camera Housings
As security camera technology becomes more advanced, the internal components also become more sensitive to dirt, water, and fluctuations in temperature. If you need to monitor the outside of your location, you will need weatherproof cameras or camera enclosures. CCTV camera housings protect against various intensities of dust and moisture that range from zero to complete protection. That level of protection is designated by its weatherproof rating.

The standard format for a camera’s weatherproof rating is IPxx with the first ‘x’ notating the level of protection against solid objects ranging from 0 (none) to 6 (complete protection) and the second ‘x’ for moisture protection which ranges from 0 (none) to 8 (complete submersion). When you’re looking for weatherproof cameras, be sure to find out their IP rating so they have the correct level of protection.

Weatherproof Rating Chart
weather proof camera rating chart
Motion Detection Recording
Monitoring around the clock so you don’t miss a single detail sounds fantastic on paper, but doing so will quickly max out your system’s hard drive and drastically shorten the amount of video you’ll have in your archive at any one time. By switching your video security system’s recording setting from “continuous” to “motion activated”, not only will you maximize your storage space, the video you do capture will be of actual events as they unfold rather than hours upon hours of an empty hallway.

Disclaimer: Motion detection recording can be triggered by swaying trees, passing traffic, and sharp shadows, but your system can be configured to ignore specific areas of the camera’s field of view and the trigger’s sensitivity can be adjusted as well.
H.264 Video Compression
H.264 is the latest and greatest video compression codec that greatly reduces the demands on your video recorder’s storage space and transmission bandwidth. (In a nutshell, it makes smaller video files and transmits them faster over your network.) Compared to the MPEG-4 video codec, recorders with H.264 compression use half of the bandwidth while transmitting the video at the same video quality.

To get the absolute most out of your video recorder’s storage space, we strongly recommend using a DVR / NVR with the H.264 codec and motion activated recording. It’s not uncommon for systems using this setup to be able to store at least a month’s worth of video on a single hard drive.
Remote Access on Smartphones / Tablets
Plainly put, Apple revolutionized the CCTV industry with the iPhone. Back in the old dark days of yore, you had to be physically on-site to view your security system’s video feeds. With the advent of the smartphone and broadband internet, your system is quite literally at your fingertips everywhere you go. With a free app that’s available on both the iTunes and Android marketplace, you can sign in, view archived video, and manage your surveillance system on your smartphone or tablet from anywhere with an internet connection.

This security camera system feature is peace of mind in your pocket. At any time of day or night, you can check in on your family, make sure your employees are working, double check that you turned off the lights before you went on vacation, or adjust your recording schedule for an upcoming holiday.

Recap
Picking up or building a CCTV system for the first time can be overwhelming with all the choices and configurations that are available to you. However, as long as your new video security system has the five features below, your home or business will be sitting pretty with a well-rounded, efficient system.

Night Vision Recording
Weatherproof Camera Housings
Motion Detection Recording
H.264 Video Compression
Remote Access via Smartphone / Tablet
We hope you enjoyed our article on the top 5 security camera system features that every location needs. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, we’d love to hear from you in the comments section below!

Posted 170 weeks ago