Choosing the right camera

Choose The Right Camera Setup

At West-Tec Security, we help commercial, government and residential clients in Sydney find the right security systems for them and their buildings. When it comes to choosing the right camera setup, it can be difficult with all of the options on the market.

From homeowners to retail businesses, deciding between coax, HD over coax cameras, IP CCTV cameras or the countless other products can seem daunting. We have been helping our clients find the right solutions and providing professional security and camera installation services for years.

The 4 CCTV Camera Options

CCTV camera options are broken down into the following:

1. Coax cameras
2. HD over coax
3. Wireless cameras
4. IP cameras

Coax Cameras

Coax cameras run over TV antenna style cable with a separate cable for power supply to the camera. More cameras are required when using coax cameras as they don’t have the range and require additional lighting to overcome the poor image quality at night.

Many businesses, like grocery stores, financial institutions and large worksites will choose coax cameras simply because it is obsolete they are far cheaper. The large cost to re-cable an entire site is the main reason why many have not converted.

HD Over Coax Cameras

One of the many products on the market include the HD over coax cameras. These cameras push HD video across traditional analog coax cables and offer an easy and affordable way to carry HD signals without upgrading redundant cabling over to data cables.

HD over coax cameras can cost as much as IP cameras if not more purely because there isn’t any other choice when it comes to analog systems.

IP CCTV Cameras

Modern IP systems will use power over ethernet (PoE) — a single cable that powers the camera and sends data through the cable. IP camera installation is typically easy with most homeowners choosing this option.

Many residents and businesses will choose an IP camera setup because of the high resolution video and images it can provide. These systems also offer remote accessibility to live cameras via devices like smartphones, tablets and computers.

IP cameras have a range from 2MP–12MP and can work over coax or over data cables — for example Cat 3 to Cat 7A. Using IP cameras over coax is not ideal and can be expensive compared to running over data.

Fewer IP cameras are needed when covering an area when compared to coax cameras. IP cameras also provide improved night vision depending on the camera chipset. Older IP cameras have a video compression of H.264.

This translates to how much space they will require on a hard drive. Newer ones utilise H.265 which enables them to save up to 95% space compared to the H.264. However, more megapixels doesn’t always translate to a better picture.

We suggest, for residential clients, that 3MP is more than enough — while 5MP is what we recommend for businesses especially if they require video analytics. IP cameras can have smart functions like line cross detection, people counting, facial recognition and license plate recognition which neither of the counterparts can do.

Once you’ve decided which kind of camera you are after you’ve got to pick lens. Which come in 2.8mm to 12mm

Wireless Cameras

We offer wireless cameras as a DIY solution for our clients at their convenience. Some wireless cameras require a power point installed at each camera location to power them. This often defeats the purpose of them being wireless.

Other wireless cameras will require batteries that need to be replaced or recharged every 1–3 months depending on how frequently they are used. Typically, wireless cameras are only capable of 720P, 1MP and 2MP.

Night vision is not the best with wireless cameras, however, the night vision is slightly better than coax cameras. Some wireless cameras offer free cloud storage for up to a week, while others will require an ongoing fee for the cloud data storing service.

The main reason residents or businesses will choose a wireless camera is because hardwiring may not be possible. Some reasons may include no roof, strata/unit or needing a quick temporary solution.

Experienced Security System Experts In Sydney

If you need help choosing between HD over coax, IP CCTV or wireless cameras, contact us today on 1300 060 686 or via info@west-tec.com.au for more information. We can help you choose a security system or with your IP camera setup or installation today.