Video Surveillance – General Information

Video Surveillance Systems are used to View, Monitor, and/or Record Images and/or Audio. The Images/Audio can be Compressed, Stored and Transmitted.

The Primary Purposes for Video Surveillance Systems are; Personal/Public Safety, Prevent and Deter Crime, Document Crime, Evidence, Provide an Electronic Alert that a Crime is Happening, Reduce Cost and Risk, Keep Employees Honest, Encourage Good Behavior, Prevent Safety Incidents, Provide Documentation of Safety Incidents/Accidents, and much more.


♦ Cloud; Video Images are Live Streamed to a Server on the Internet to Store your Video Recordings.

♦ Digital Video Recorder (DVR); Video Images are Live Streamed over Analog Coax Cable to your DVR to Store your Video Recordings. (Images are converted from Analog to Digital at the DVR)

Network Video Recorder (NVR); Video Images are Live Streamed over CAT5e/CAT6 Cable to your DVR to Store your Video Recordings. (Images are Digital from the Camera all the way to your NVR)

Some DVR/NVR’s may come without storage.  You may have to separately purchase a Hard Drive, USB Drive, Connect the DVR/NVR to a PC, etc. in order store recordings. In this case, you can View and Monitor, but you CAN’T Record. (Look for Security-Grade Hard Drives) (If you don’t know how the Video Surveillance System that you’re thinking of buying works, talk to people who do)

Some DVR/NVR’s allow you to back up to Cloud Storage as an extra layer of security.  Be aware that most Cloud Storage is available for a Monthly Fee.

Common Camera Types:

Indoor/Outdoor; Camera is suitable for both outdoor and indoor applications

Box Camera; named for their box-like shape

Dome Camera: named for their dome-like shape

Bullet Camera; camera that is shaped like a cylinder/bullet

Analog Camera; Used for Digital Video Recorder (DVR) Systems

IP Camera; Used for Network Video Recorder (NVR) & Cloud Storage Systems

Day/Night Camera; Camera designed for day or night use.

Pan/Tilt/Zoom (PTZ) Camera; Offers ability to move lens up/down, left/right, in/out

Weatherproof Camera; Designed to withstand adverse weather conditions

Vandal Resistant Camera; Built and designed to withstand vandalism

Explosionproof Camera; Designed for specific locations to meet code requirements

Thermal Camera; Designed for night vision

Night Vision; View video during the day and with night vision at night.

Color Night Vision; View Color video during the day and night (Color at night has distance limitations)

High Efficiency Video Compression HEVC/H.265 compression: Look for HEVC compression technology. HEVC is also known as H.265 or MPEG-H Part 2. HEVC is used to compress video file sizes without noticeable difference in quality. This allows you retain 4K footage without 4K file sizes. It also lets you watch the highest quality security footage while you are away from your home or business without large data transfers.

Digital Noise Reduction (DNR): technology is used to filter out noise from low-light settings, as well as any noise caused by motion. By eliminating graininess, your camera provides a cleaner, more accurate image with better clarity, sharpness, and improved motion detection. DNR also helps reduce video file sizes, providing longer record times.

Wide Dynamic Range (WDR) is a term used in the surveillance camera industry to refer to High Dynamic Range Imaging. Cameras with WDR have software that enables them to balance lighting for one clear image, even when part of an image is extremely dark and another part is so bright you can’t see any details.

Video Surveillance Systems can usually be set to Continuous Recording, Scheduled Recording , and/or Motion Detection Recording on a Camera by Camera basis.

Regional Motion Zones: Create custom motion zones for different camera. These zones can be programmed to adjust both the sensitivity (the amount of movement required to register that movement) and threshold (how much movement is required before creating a motion “event”) for motion detection in different areas of the camera’s field of view. So more important areas, like a door, can be set to record or create a motion event at the slightest movement, while a tree or bush would need a lot more movement to set off the motion detection.

Privacy Masking: Sometimes there are areas within a camera’s field of view (FOV) that you simply do not want to record. Most newer Cameras allow you to program your NVR to literally mask out these sections.

With or Without the Internet: Standalone camera systems (DVR/NVR) do not need the internet to operate. Internet connectivity is required if you wish to use remote monitoring via Smartphone, Tablet, or PC.

4K (8Megapixel) Ultra HD (UHD) Resolution (4×1080p Full HD): 4K resolution offers Four (4) times the Resolution of 1080p with approximately 4000 horizontal pixels, providing the maximum level of detail and clarity available today.

2K (4-Megapixel) Super HD Resolution (2×1080p Full HD): 2K resolution offers Two (2) times the Resolution of 1080p. 2K cameras provide Two (2) times the amount of pixels as a 1080p camera.

Real-Time 30FPS Recording Rate: Recording at 30 FPS will provide exceptionally smooth on-screen movement and provide more frames to choose from when cycling through footage.

ECS is an Authorized Video Surveillance Solution Provider located in Seattle, WA & Portland, OR.

ECS provides local technicians for on-site work installing and servicing a variety of voice/data equipment, ie; Low Voltage Cabling, CAT5e/CAT6, Fiber Optic, IP Office Telephone Systems, Voicemail, Telephones, Firewalls, Ethernet Switches, Circuit Extensions, Wireless Networking, Video Surveillance, Point of Sale, Overhead Paging, Avaya Aura Servers, Gateways, etc. 

ECS provides services in Washington & Oregon, primarily in the greater Seattle & Portland areas.


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