Surveillance technology has made strides over the past few years. As a result surveillance cameras are becoming more affordable. Consequently, both home owners and businesses alike are using surveillance systems to monitor and secure their property. There are several types of surveillance cameras that are available on the market today. Cameras that are different in terms of resolutions, wired or wireless capabilities and their ability to broadcast over the internet.
The use of Surveillance IP Cameras
Commonly used for surveillance, an IP camera is a type of digital camera that simply sends and receives data through any computer network including the internet. Unlike its analog counterpart the CCTV (Closed Circuit Television) camera which transmits its signal to a predetermined number of internal monitors, the IP camera simply makes a public broadcast via the internet and can be accessed by quite a number of interested persons anywhere in the world.
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The IP camera involves the webcam and it is only referred to as an IP camera or a netcam when used for surveillance purposes. There are two types of IP cameras which are:
- Centralized IP Cameras: This is the type that requires a central NVR(Network Video Recorder) to cater for the recording, video and alarm functions.
- Decentralized IP Cameras: This type does not require the central NVR since it contains an in-built recording mechanism which enables it to record directly to a digital storage medium like a hard disk, network attached storage or a flash drive.
IP Camera Benefits
According to Panopticon Security, IP Cameras provide secure data transmission by encryption and authentication methods like the WPA, WPA2, WEP.AES and so on. Remote accessibility is possible via any computer or mobile device from anywhere. The two way audio through a single network cable enables users to effectively communicate with whoever they are seeing at the other end.
IP cameras have many applications. They are used in situation where the need to monitor areas live. In most cases, the camera feed is viewed remotely by an observer. Applications of IP cameras include locations where the need for higher security is present.
Current IP cameras can function properly without any additional power supply. They are simply able to function with the PoE (Power over Ethernet) protocol which supplies power through the Ethernet cable.
Although IP camera is a technology that seems to be perfect in many ways, it also has its disadvantages. The first and most important downside of an IP camera is the price. IP cameras are generally more expensive than analog cameras. Aside from the expensive cameras that are needed, it also needs greater bandwidth demands and complexity. And, with the CCTV or DVR system, in some cases, the video might be transmitted to the public internet instead of transmitting it to Private IP LAN, thus the system can be open to broader audience.
IP cameras are also able to effectively function on a wireless network. On the flip side, this type of camera requires high network bandwidth for best results. The chances of unauthorized persons gaining access to the transmitted videos are high since they are being transmitted via the public internet and not a private IP LAN. They also require quite costly webcams with the best resolution unless in instances where less expensive ones are used. IP Cameras still continue to advance as newer models are introduced in the market. They have also become more popular in the surveillance industry.
At the end of the day, whether you need an IP camera or not really depends on what your uses are. If you are looking for remote viewing capabilities and live monitoring then such a camera would be a good fit for your surveillance needs.
Michael C. is owner of Panopticon Security and has been in the surveillance camera installation for ten years. You can visit the company’s website panopticonsecurity.ca to read more about surveillance cameras.