What does CCTV Mean?
This means Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) and is the use of a limited number of monitors in a specific place which receive a signal directly from video cameras.
What does DVR Mean?
DVR stands for Digital Video Recorder and is an electronics device or software which records video straight onto one of many types of storage such as disk drives, USB flash memory, SD memory cards or mass storage devices. This can be done directly or via a network. The term can also cover set-top boxes with inbuilt recording, a variety of software which can be used for both video capture and playback via a personal computer and even certain portable media players with recording functions.
How long can I record for?
The amount of time a recording device such as a DVR can archive depends on many variables: 1) The size of the storage device ie: hard drive 2) The cameras resolution. 3) The cameras frame rate 4) The record settings such as recording only when there is motion vs all the time. Additionally there are other elements that can affect your record times as well which generally occur on a case by case basis.
Can I view my cameras remotely?
Some DVR's have the capability of being viewed remotely via the Internet. In most cases this is achieved via Internet Explorer or the DVR's proprietary software. It is important to note the speed and quality of the image via a remote connection is greatly dependant on the DVR's or Cameras compression type and the speed of the Internet connection on both ends. Additionally some IP cameras will allow you to connect via a network or Internet directly to them.
Are DVR's Mac compatible?
The majority of DVR's are still not MAC compatible. However there are models in the industry that are MAC compatible. Just make sure to mention this when speaking to a surveillance representative.
Are DVR's smartphone compatible?
The majority of DVR's are still not Smart Phone compatible. For the select few that support Smart Phone technology they are generally limited to Droid 2 or Iphone models only. In most cases this type of remote viewing is achieved via the phone browser or a downloaded application. Additionally, you will only be able to view one camera at a time. It is important to note the speed and quality of the image via a remote connection is greatly dependant on the DVR's or Cameras compression type and the speed of the Internet connection on both ends.
Can I record audio?
Yes, most DVR's come with an audio option. However, the number of audio channels do not always match the number of video channels so it is important to disclose your audio during your consultation. Additionally, since most analog cameras do not come with built in audio, you will probably need to purchase a separate microphone in order to achieve this goal.
How many cameras do I need?
There are many factors that will contribute to the number of cameras that will be required in order to survey a particular area. Some of the factors are as follows: Area to be covered, Level of detail to be captured, Lighting condition, Visual obstructions, etc. The absolute best way to make this determination is to schedule an on site consultation.
What is Lux?
The lux is the unit of measurement for illuminance and luminous emittance, it is measured in luminous power over a particular area. When purchasing surveillance cameras they will often include the minimum lux value in the specifications which shows the light level at which the camera will record an acceptable image. The lower the lux rating the better a camera is at handling low light situations. Below is a chart containing real world examples of LUX in different environments.
Direct sunlight -------------------- 100,000 - 130,000 lux
Full daylight, indirect sunlight --- 10,000 - 20,000 lux
Overcast day ----------------------- 1,000 lux
Indoor office ---------------------- 200 - 400 lux
Very dark day ---------------------- 100 lux
Twilight --------------------------- 10 lux
Deep twilight ---------------------- 1 lux
Full moon -------------------------- 0.1 lux
Quarter moon ----------------------- 0.01 lux
Moonless clear night sky ----------- 0.001 lux
Moonless overcast night sky -------- 0.0001 lux
What happens if I lose my power?
Most Security DVR's are set up to automatically continue recording when power is restored. We highly recommend the addition of an Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) which functions as temporary backup power and usually provides effective surge protection as an additional benefit.
Can I zoom-in with my camera?
In most cases only Pan, Tilt, Zoom (PTZ) type cameras will allow the user to zoom in and out. This type of camera is usually controlled with an optional joy stick controller. However there are cameras that have a motorized zoom lens installed. With these camera types you may have the ability to zoom in and out only.