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Survivalism & Self Sufficiency Topics => Homesteading and Self Reliant Living => Home And Business Security => Topic started by: Docwatmo on January 14, 2010, 12:06:50 PM

Title: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 14, 2010, 12:06:50 PM
As per an earlier discussion here is a thread for video surveillance.

Some items to keep in mind when considering Video Security.

1.  Location, Location, Location, :)  Wired vs Wireless cameras, receivers etc.
2.  Lighting:  Do you need NV or daylight only or mixed
3.  Quality of video:  Do you need high end video that can read a license number at 50 feet or just get a decent vehicle description
4.  Storage time and space:  How long do you wish to record.  Do you want to keep back logs of video for several months, or only a couple of days.  The combination of quality and time will determine space requirements.

Just a couple of items to kick the thread off with. 
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: KYdoomer on January 14, 2010, 12:23:59 PM
This is excellent.  I found your links on the afformentioned previous thread.  I am in your debt. 

J
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: KYdoomer on January 14, 2010, 12:26:47 PM
Oh hey, what did you use as a receiver for the wireless ones?  I'll do a search on Tiger but I was just wondering.

J
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 14, 2010, 01:21:45 PM
I'm useing an older version of this reciever (minus the camera)  (http://www.buy.com/prod/q-see-qswlocr-2-4-ghz-wireless-outdoor-camera-kit-with-receiver-20ft/q/loc/101/204849421.html (http://www.buy.com/prod/q-see-qswlocr-2-4-ghz-wireless-outdoor-camera-kit-with-receiver-20ft/q/loc/101/204849421.html))  I have one at each office location, but i'm going to be adding another 2 or 3 cameras when we restructure our building and i'll want to pick up a multichanel reciever to replace them with.

This has been running hands off with no user intervention for 3 years now without a glitch. 

Tigerdirect.com is great for most of these items.  There are some better specialty shops (http://www.2mcctv.com/ (http://www.2mcctv.com/) is my fave) but they do tend to get pricier.

Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: TimSuggs on January 14, 2010, 01:26:49 PM
I set mine up with 4 of the X-10 B/W cameras, hardwired into 4 old VCR's with T-180 tapes, set the timers to kick in at 10pm and let the tape run to the end.  The next morning all the tapes were rewound, ejected and ready for viewing.  I had motion detector lights in the same area as each camera, so all I had to do to review the tapes was hit fast forward" and watch for the lights to come on when tripped.  I had most of the "darkness of night" covered with the cameras and motion detector lights, during the day, the other "security" items would take care of any threats.

One thing I did notice after reviewing tape after tape, just because you don't wake up the next morning and find your drivers window knocked out does not mean that there isn't a threat out there.  I just happened to catch a guy on tape as he crept up onto my cars sitting in the driveway every night for a week straight and check the door handles of each car.  I went back and more carefully reviewed the rest of the tapes from that week and even though I "saw" him the one night he tripped a motion detector light, he had been checking nightly for a week.  Me and a few "friends" were waiting for him the next night.  Hadn't been back since.

Tim.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 14, 2010, 01:56:24 PM
My first system at work was tape based using T180's that I rotated out daily.  That was a pain.

I now use only motion controlled recording.  I have a single (mirrored) 160 gig drive and its got nearly 6 months of video on it now and hasn't cycled back to overwrite the old data yet.

The free software that comes with the Q-See products is basic and kind of flaky but does the job. 
I currently use the full SMS software that came with our high end DVR system.  Its awesome, but a bit complicated and a pain to set up, but once running is pretty slick.
Before the new DVR, I was using the D-Link software which is ok, but a little buggy.

I did play with some of the freebies on the net but never had much luck with them (one on one camera is fine but when you want more than one camera on display you really need to purchase some decent software.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Rookinde on January 14, 2010, 05:52:31 PM
Is any of you willing to write up a good how to, and give some info for wiring and the cheap system for the ant just starting or preppers that are not in with all the tech stuff?

Rook ;D
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: TimSuggs on January 14, 2010, 07:12:22 PM
Is any of you willing to write up a good how to, and give some info for wiring and the cheap system for the ant just starting or preppers that are not in with all the tech stuff?
Rook ;D

I is if Docwatmo is?  I'll handle the Low-Tech Redneck version if Docwatmo can do us up on the other end of the spectrum?

Tim.

Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 14, 2010, 09:12:43 PM
You got it.   I'll put it up by Monday though, (Possibly some time over the weekend but I have a busy weekend ahead of me with Pinewood Derby/waffle breakfast so no guarantees :) ). 

I'm looking at doing 2 separate (one 2 or 3 camera and one 4 to 6 camera system in the next couple of months). Wouldn't hurt to dig in to the current hardware, its been a while since I looked at the hardware.


 


Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: TimSuggs on January 15, 2010, 10:16:09 PM
You got it.   I'll put it up by Monday though, (Possibly some time over the weekend but I have a busy weekend ahead of me with Pinewood Derby/waffle breakfast so no guarantees :) ). 

Mine will be the bootleg DollarTree version.  But a working system nonetheless.  I'll also shoot for a weekend completion.

Tim.

Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: bartsdad on January 16, 2010, 01:10:53 AM
A: Thank You Docwatmo. Since I instigated this, I should at least acknowledge it. ;)

B: I'm looking to put together a system myself and expect it to be a bit of a hybrid between REDNECK Tim's and Doc's. ;D

C: With a home wireless network, would it be possible to monitor video via my Ipod Touch? That would be the bomb.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Rookinde on January 16, 2010, 06:07:27 AM
A: Thank You Docwatmo. Since I instigated this, I should at least acknowledge it. ;)

B: I'm looking to put together a system myself and expect it to be a bit of a hybrid between REDNECK Tim's and Doc's. ;D

C: With a home wireless network, would it be possible to monitor video via my Ipod Touch? That would be the bomb.

I would think so, if you can see your network on the IPOD. The only question is would you have to make a app for it? That I don't know.

Rook
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 16, 2010, 01:18:45 PM
I'll include the options later for remote access.  (I think i'm looking at 4 separate tutorials right now.

The first version draft is done and I'll post it tonight.  Its a simple single webcam version quick and dirty but I also include some of the ground work for planning a system regardless of the size.

I'll include more advanced tutorials afterward including remote access versions.  I know I can access some via my windows mobile phone but not sure about the Ipod (Don't use or develop for it).  Since most of the solutions i'll post include web accessible servers any web enabled device that supports the control (Java, Active X etc) should be able to access it.

Also, beyond direct monitoring, Most of the setups I do will include motion capture and notification, so if you have a mobile phone with web (Or even just SMS texting) you can receive notifications with pictures (or short video's) when an alarm is triggered.

Another note, I'm not an expert, I've just done my share of a variety of tech jobs and am familiar with most.  So whatever I put up, I expect others to beat up and add to or correct my errors.  Also, when dealing with security, there is more than just the technical aspect.  Knowledge of ingress and egress routes, lane's of fire/observation and many other aspects go into the planning and design.  I will do my best, but i'm sure there are some on here with much more experience in security and surveillance than I have and I would be glad (if not overly insistent :) ) to take their advice and tips and suggestions and incorporate them into these tutorials.  This isn't my documentation, its all of ours. 

Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 18, 2010, 09:09:12 AM
I'm going to build a small open website to host the Video security stuff.  It will be open and allow upload and download of documents, videos, pictures etc.  Make it an easy to use community reference.   

I took the day off to spend some family time but i'll post the first document tonight.

Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: TimSuggs on January 18, 2010, 09:34:41 PM
Truth in shooting my big mouth off Policy:  OK, I said I'd put together my bootleg DollarTree version this weekend, I didn't exactly lie, I just didn't get the opportunity to do it - YET.  My daughter borrowed my camera last week and then returned it without the charging cord, so after dragging all my bootleg gear out, no pictures were possible.  The camera is now on charge and I hope to be able to post the little project tomorrow.  I promise!

Tim.

Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: cpf240 on January 18, 2010, 11:43:30 PM
Wow guys... just wow... this is awesome! I've been wanting to setup a video system for my home, and never made much progress. That cheapie X-10 camera and VCR activator I had just never worked out very well.

Can't wait to read your instructables!
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 19, 2010, 08:38:04 AM
Ok, I went ahead and created a Google site to use for Video Security.  Its open for access by anyone so everyone can just go to the site and read the documents and tips and suggestions etc.  I've never used google sites before so i'm still dinking with it. (Pretty slick little set up though).

If anyone has trouble with or suggestions for the site, please feel free to email, PM or post to the site.

The site is not done, I've only just begun modifications from the default template.  However the first intro document is available under the documents section.

There is still a lot of "Fluff" from the default template which I will either modify or delete, but the general site layout is ok.

The website is  http://sites.google.com/site/vidsecintro (http://sites.google.com/site/vidsecintro)  Then click Documents to view, download or print the current document. (It has a built in PDF viewer so you don't need any software to view the PDF formated documents.

I believe anyone with a Google account can upload documents (Haven't tested it yet) but not sure yet.  I'm trying to keep the format open.  I may add a standing FTP document repository with a nice little upload tool but that will be down the road.

The first document is posted, again its not much, just an into with some basic info leading up to a single webcam type install (Cheap and Dirty).

I'll be posting additional tutorials working up through multi-camera and stand alone DVR 4 camera systems over the next couple of weeks.  It will just take me some time to get them all done.

Please, Please, Please beat up on this document, make corrections, suggestions etc.  If something doesn't look right, or could be better worded or formated, or additional information would be useful, don't hesitate to PM me or send a note or email. 




Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: KYdoomer on January 19, 2010, 09:00:03 AM
I could kiss ya (if I weren't so straight!).   :D

J
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 19, 2010, 09:47:52 AM
Backs slowly out of the room and reconsiders this whole TSP thing thanks to Kydoomer. LOL
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: TimSuggs on January 19, 2010, 10:55:21 AM
Backs slowly out of the room and reconsiders this whole TSP thing thanks to Kydoomer. LOL

Ditto, when I post my "Bootleg/DollarTree" white paper, a simple, "non-wet" Thank You will suffice.  <grin>

(Dueling banjo's softly playing in the background...)

Tim.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: KYdoomer on January 19, 2010, 11:21:53 AM
Ditto, when I post my "Bootleg/DollarTree" white paper, a simple, "non-wet" Thank You will suffice.  <grin>

(Dueling banjo's softly playing in the background...)

Tim.


You sho're do have a pritty mouth!

(this thread derailment brought to you by the letter...)

J
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on January 19, 2010, 11:39:07 AM
Good thread.
I'm looking to do a wired system going to a PC. 
The cameras will probably be located at each corner of the home, so access via the attic is easy.I have to run power anyway, so running coax will be easy enough.
4 channel PC card to DVR for XXX days
Access any camera from anywhere on the home LAN.

I don't know beans about the cameras.  What specs are important, what range of spec is decent.  Obviously the high end one's are better, but that's not what I'm looking for.

Come to think of it, the power for the cameras could also run back to a UPS.... just thinking outloud.

Hey... what's that strange 70's era Jazz music playing in the background here. :)
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 19, 2010, 12:03:23 PM
I put all systems on UPS,  The low voltage draw of the cameras can get 45 minutes to 2 hours out of simple 450 VA UPS systems.  Much easier if you run all camera and power back to a central location.  I have postponed my trip next week to Kansas City, so I may have some more free time to put up some more docs and tutorials.  I'm looking at putting in a 6 or 8 camera system at work to replace my cobbled together version.  I'll use that as a walk through in the design phase and it should work for any 4+ camera system.

Ray, A couple of questions.

1.  Are you looking at running a stand alone DVR or piping it to a computer?
2.  Do you have a dollar amount in mind you are looking to stay around?
3.  What kind of distances are you planning to cover with the cameras?
4.  Do you have any outdoor lighting (In town) or is it dark.
5.  How wide of an angle are you looking at covering?  (If you can narrow your width to ingress egress routes, you can get better quality from cheaper cameras).

That should get you started.

Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on January 19, 2010, 06:51:12 PM
1.  Are you looking at running a stand alone DVR or piping it to a computer? 
I have a dedicated PC for the job, I just need the video input card & software.
2.  Do you have a dollar amount in mind you are looking to stay around? 
$200-$400 ?
3.  What kind of distances are you planning to cover with the cameras? 
The yard & Driveway, so it is some distance from the camera. 50+ feet
4.  Do you have any outdoor lighting (In town) or is it dark. 
I have motion sensors on all outdoor lighting
5.  How wide of an angle are you looking at covering?  (If you can narrow your width to ingress egress routes, you can get better quality from cheaper cameras).
90 degrees?   Not sure, haven't delt with them before.  At this point I'm looking at one or two then adding additional as needed.  I have two areas that I want to cover now.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 19, 2010, 09:26:49 PM
Sounds like a pretty standard setup.  If you have motion trip on the lights and don't care about capturing night or dealing with night vision and IR, your gonna have a pretty easy time with it.

 I'll pull some specs and give some suggestions tomorrow.  Without the need for night vision you should be able to stay well below the $200 mark for a decent card and 2 cameras.  Probably end up focusing one near the house (20 ft or so) to maximize detail from the light reference at night (And peak detail during the daylight hours) and focus the other further down the drive for daylight use.  (probably lose most of the long range camera at night depending on the lights.  (A lot of this depends on the power of your motion lights and how far they reach).

On cameras in the sub $70 range, you start to lose detail outside of about 60 degrees pretty quickly (Cheap non glass lenses).  Some wide angles lenses do well with good light but their focal range can be short.  I'm looking at auto focus motion tracking cameras to avoid this problem but they get a bit more expensive.  Plus if you have multiple subjects advancing on the camera, the auto focus and zoom gets confused easily, had one I tested just zoom out to infinity and stick there until I manually screwed the lens back down).

Got to get some work done so i'll sing off tonight and try to have something up tomorrow.  Did you have any gear picked out already or are you still in the planning stages?

Doc
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: TimSuggs on January 20, 2010, 05:45:16 AM
Tim's Bootleg/DollaTree/DumpsterDivin Video Cam Recipe:

Ingredients:    
One Panasonic CCTV Camera (slightly used and appropriately soiled - dug out of a gas station dumpster)  $000.000
50' cable with 2 BNC type connectors  WallyWorld    $6.96
1 BNC/RCA Adapter  Radio Shack    $5.99
1 24v AC Power Supply  Local Electronics Supply Store    $19.99

Total Cost (NOT including a couple of squirts of Windex to get all the crude off)  $32.94

Directions:
Take one used CCTV, remove surface crude, clean lens, inspect.
(http://i414.photobucket.com/albums/pp229/timsuggs/VidCam039.jpg)

Add one 24v AC Power supply.
(http://i414.photobucket.com/albums/pp229/timsuggs/VidCam042.jpg)

Add 50' coax cable w/BNC connectors.
(http://i414.photobucket.com/albums/pp229/timsuggs/VidCam037.jpg)

Add BNC/RCA connector adapter.
(http://i414.photobucket.com/albums/pp229/timsuggs/VidCam038.jpg)

Sit back, smile at your collection of parts and pieces.
(http://i414.photobucket.com/albums/pp229/timsuggs/VidCam055.jpg)

Connect BNC connector to camera.
(http://i414.photobucket.com/albums/pp229/timsuggs/VidCam056.jpg)

Connect 24v AC Power supply to camera.
(http://i414.photobucket.com/albums/pp229/timsuggs/VidCam043.jpg)

Plug RCA adapter into "Video In" on TV /VCR /DVR and turn TV on.
(http://i414.photobucket.com/albums/pp229/timsuggs/VidCam057.jpg)

Whoops...  Plug in 24v AC Power Supply and turn CCTV "On" and you should have a picture like this.
(http://i414.photobucket.com/albums/pp229/timsuggs/VidCam051.jpg)

Adjust lens on camera for best picture (this camera has both aperture and focus adjustments).
(http://i414.photobucket.com/albums/pp229/timsuggs/VidCam044.jpg)

Close up of mount (This one is for "suspended ceiling tile" rails).
(http://i414.photobucket.com/albums/pp229/timsuggs/VidCam046.jpg)

The picture was really fuzzy and weak at first, wiped off more crude from the lens and gave the camera time to warm up a little and things got a lot better.  In the end, a very suitable image for a "dumpster cam".  The easier and much higher quality setup would be either the wired (coax and power supply) camera sold at WallyWorld for $39,96 or their "Wireless" version for about $70.00.  As soon as I get my hands on either (soon I hope) I'll post the setup on them.  Enjoy!

Tim.


Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 20, 2010, 06:10:44 AM
Tim, great one.  Love the pictures really puts the equipment into perspective.  (Is that you in the monitor  ;))

I have 5 similar cameras (2 with auto iris lenses) in a box at work along with an ancient 16 channel Mux and an early Sanyo hard drive based DVR recorder.  They came from our old building when we moved out of it 8 years ago and the boss told me to toss em or keep em.  Just need to get around to getting them worked into something. (I may use them for one of the installations i'm looking at doing in the next couple of months).

(I finally got 2 x 24volt  power Supplies last month so maybe i'll use them in the next application).  I had planned on setting up a complete system at home, one door camera, 1 parking/street camera, and 3 perimeter cameras, but I just never seem to have the time to run cable and punch holes through the walls and I don't want 8 power supplies to handle wireless connections for all the cameras around the house (not to mention the expense of the wireless adapters).

Still need to get a reel of coax and 8 or 10 BNC's to terminate it with.

If only I had the time. LOL



 
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on January 20, 2010, 10:31:39 AM
I'm still planning.  Waiting to hear the word back from the shop (on the car) before making any purchases. 
I want to invest in decent cameras.  What I use inside may change, but once I get them in place and powered up, I want a fairly decent picture.  That's why I need to know more about the specs so I can make an intellegent decision.  I guess with that I'm looking at a $75 +/-  range for each camera.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 20, 2010, 11:46:54 AM
Whats the longest indoor distance you'll be covering?  Indoor is generally 20ft or less and even cheap cameras can work well.  You've got a good budget for outdoor cameras.  Also, cameras for outdoor are either already outdoor sealed or you will need a housing for them.  What kind of of weather do you have in your area?  Much below freezing or high humidity periods?

Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on January 20, 2010, 06:06:10 PM
I plan to install these under the eves, so they should be out of direct weather.  It can get down below zero and up to 102 ish I suppose.

I don't have any immediate plans for indoor cameras.  I'm playing with the camcorder at the moment... actually I want to see which dog is getting on the couch when we're not home ;). 

Our home has a good number of windows at 'deck' level.  They're good Anderson's, but its glass.  I want to see the driveway, since there isn't a good vantage point inside to see it and it would most likely be the point of intrusion.  There's no vehicular access at any other angle without a 4x4 or motorcycle (possible, but less likely). 

Another point that hasn't been mentioned.  I'm considering how to conceal the cameras.  My logic here is that if I'm the only house in the neighborhood with them, then I must have some good stuff.  On the other hand, if I'm the only one with them, then why mess with this one?  Plus  the dogs etc.  I want to make mine the most difficult to invade.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: TimSuggs on January 21, 2010, 02:29:51 AM
Tim, great one.  Love the pictures really puts the equipment into perspective.  (Is that you in the monitor  ;))

Still need to get a reel of coax and 8 or 10 BNC's to terminate it with.  If only I had the time. LOL

Thank you, thank you!  I was a day late, but hey, at least I came through with it (and I got my camera back from my daughter in working condition this time)  YES, that is my ugliness on the screen.  I took that shot within about 1 minute of powering the system up, the picture quality got much better as the camera warmed up.  And as a side note...  The 32" Sanyo Flat Screen (not LED, but it is a flat screen) TV was a freebie too!  I was sitting in the right place at the right time when a guy was moving out of his apt at 4:am and he had a full truck by the time he rolled out the TV on a furniture dolly, I wound up getting the TV, remote and the furniture dolly for free.  AND the table it is sitting on came from the same apt dumpster too.  I wiped a little pollen off of it and it was good as new.

Now Docwatmo, I can tell from your posts you got me beat hands down in your CCTV experiences and knowledge.  When I talk about "terminating" things, people start running and screaming, so I guess we differ a little bit there, but I happily and respectfully bow to your superior CCTV knowledge and prowess.

With my "DollaTree CCTV" setup, you could insert just about any camera of choice and it is going to be basically the same connections, a video feed and a power supply.  The "ends" of the cable requirements may change from one camera/VCR to the next so you may have to juggle adapters around until you can get it right enough to hook up on both ends, but, basically that's about it.  Plug it into the recording media of your choice (VCR/DVR,DVD-R) and you got yourself a viewable history of what took place in front of that camera for the last 2/4/6/8 hours.  The X-10 cameras I have used in the past had the same "needs" as this camera did, but was accomplished with a different type of "cable".  The X-10 used a flat wire like you would use for a telephone with RJ-11 connectors that carried the video, audio and power.

WallyWorld carries both wired and wireless cameras for a fairly decent price, and if it doesn't work for some reason, just take it back and get another one NOW, saving you the shipping delay for a "return" if you got it mailorder. 

And just because I know there's somebody out there that is wondering, a WIRELESS camera works pretty much the same way except it runs on a battery (9v x ?), sends it's video/audio feed via a radio signal through an attached antenna, rather than a wire, and you have a radio receiver that receives that signal that is plugged into all the right "holes" (video-in/audio-in) on your recording device.  Range of the signal from the camera varies, and so does the length of time between battery changes in the camera (the receivers usually have AC power supply).  Keep that battery "change" in mind when selecting the location for your camera, cause your going to be skinnying up that ladder to change the batteries every couple of weeks or so.  And I just bought a 4 pack of Energizer 9v today at WallyWorld for my metal detectors and it was a little over $13.00 with tax, so keep that in mind too.  If you had to swap out 4 batteries every week, damn, that's pushing $700.00 a year your blowing through on batteries!  And I don't know about all of you, but I'd like a little better "return" on my $700 than a pile of dead 9v batteries.

So no matter which way you want to lean, it's not rocket science, you can do this.  All you got to do is try.

Tim.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 21, 2010, 05:55:41 AM
Your too kind Tim.  Although, i'm far from an expert and there are many people who probabbly know the video and camer/lens side of things better than I do on here.  I've done 5 installations (4 x 4 camera and 1 x 2 camera) and played with a couple of cameras in the last 10 years.  Thats all the experience I have.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: TimSuggs on January 21, 2010, 12:14:39 PM
Your too kind Tim.  Although, i'm far from an expert and there are many people who probabbly know the video and camer/lens side of things better than I do on here.  I've done 5 installations (4 x 4 camera and 1 x 2 camera) and played with a couple of cameras in the last 10 years.  Thats all the experience I have.

Not as kind as you think, but thanks for the compliment.  I just know when I see more experience than I posses.  I have run hardwired computer networks, alarm systems, low voltage lighting, pre-wired houses for Cat-5, done a few telephone punchdowns and so on, but I don't know it all by any means.

What I would like more info on are the "multiplexers" (if that's the correct term)  so that you get multiple video cams on one viewing/recording source.  I know there are "simple" versions that either automatically scroll through the video feeds at a set speed/tiime interval and then there are more involved systems that allow you to pull up this or that feed full screen, select which feeds you want to switch through, add this feed, drop that feed, and then there's the whole world of DMX options adding pan/tilt/zoom, etc.  And please, feel free to explain it to me like I was a 5 year old, it soaks in a little faster that way.

Tim.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 21, 2010, 01:07:45 PM
Daddy has 4 apples (Cameras) and Mommy has 1 watermelon (TV)...

Just kidding.  I've only dealt with two hardware Video multiplexers on our primary camera systems. (I use software muxing on the rack cameras).

Sanyo MPX-MD4 (From our first 4 camera DVR back in 2001)
and the newer Panorama (SECUBE) ET-800 (Has MUX and the DVR in the same box). http://www.secubeusa.com/et_800.php (http://www.secubeusa.com/et_800.php)

These are higher end systems.  (In the $1500 range for the Sanyo (Back in 2001), probably cheaper models now) and the SECUBE was about 1200 in 2008 fully configured.  Base model is about $699 now.

Both hardware and software mux's work in similar ways.  The lower end just captures individual clips form multiple cameras.  Say for example you have 2 cameras and they are "Seeing" video at 10 frames per second each.  The mux will capture 5 frames from each camera (or whatever interval you set).  The frames are then stored as 2 separate videos.  This is a really basic explanation because there are many muxes and DVRs with many different capabilities and I've only used a couple of them).

A good hardware mux will capture each video as a separate stream (All 10 frames each) and record it to a different area of the storage medium (Huge improvements since DVR replaced Tapes).  This allows you to view or zoom to individual cameras as needed both with live video as it happens and with the recorded video.

Video is a bit of a misnomer here, because "Technically" most system don't capture video, they capture a series of stills from the camera (Yes I know that is what video really is, but the distinction is in the number of frames, full motion video is anything 30 frames per second or higher).  This is mostly because it saves space on the recording medium and reduces the hardware requirements to handle what would essentially be full motion video.  There are systems that do capture direct full motion video but your file sizes grow so fast it either requires a tremendous amount of storage, or a short hold time.

Software mux is cheaper, easier and just about as good (It can get flaky and will Skip frames more often than hardware).  Works on the same principle, just lets the computer do most of the work of the DVR and MUX.

I have to get back to work right now, but i'll try to put something more together and post it to the Vidsecintro site late tonight or sometime tommorow.






Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: bartsdad on January 22, 2010, 02:09:52 AM
Hey Doc and Tim,

I'm really enjoying the info and the banter. :beer:

Keep it up, lots of good info, we all thank you.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 22, 2010, 09:18:11 AM
I must apologize.  My intentions have once again been quashed by the real world.  I'm swamped and don't have any spare time to do any write ups at work today (maybe a little time tonight) and i'm gonna be traveling Saturday and part of Sunday so you may not see anything till late Monday. 

I'll still be checking in on my phone periodically, but I wont be typing much with these giant sausage fingers on my itty bitty keyboard on the phone :)

I'm hoping to put together a step by step with photos of the 2 camera software based wireless system I have in place on the racks sometime next week.  Just got to tell all these people at work to stop breaking things and that I have important things to do and stop bothering me with work related stuff LOL.

And with that, Doc out.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on January 22, 2010, 10:29:53 AM
Not a problem Doc.   I'm going to look around the WWW and see what I can find.  I'd like to see an explanation of the specs on the equipment as well as a priority, what's important and what's not so important.  I'll post the links as I find um.  I'm thinking the specs on the camera are going to be most important.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Archangel Mike on January 24, 2010, 10:32:12 PM
Hi All,

Our neighborhood has one road that comes in and T's off to reach both sides of the neighborhood. Several months ago the neighbor closest to the road asked about camera systems.  I agreed to build a system that can record traffic coming in and out.

Used 2-4 year old PC. 1-GB memory 80GB hard drive using Linux
Use zoneminder.com software.
1 cheap ($8) video input card (great for one camera. OK for 2, get much better card for more)

I'm planning on buying a decent IR camera and change out the fixed focus to 9mm so it gets the appropriate field of vision 80-100' at a range of 80-100' feet.  This should run about $150.

We're going to put it under an eve behind a downspout. I'll post pictures when I get it all together.

Mike
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 24, 2010, 10:41:01 PM
I'm VERY interested in the Linux software you used.  I'm working on a similar 3 camera setup for a Carwash in the next couple of months and I wanted something more stable then windows.  I hand't seen anything on Linux yet.  What Linux Distro are you using?

Thanks

Doc
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 26, 2010, 07:50:02 AM
Mike,  Do you have any suggestions for good quality 4 port (or more) video input source that works with Linux?  Probably have to be USB or FW as i'm using a mini Dell EX (for harsh environments) for the box and it doesn't have an open 1/2 hight PCI slot.

I just ordered the Dell hardware for the Linux box that will be doing the recording at one of the installations.  Its my first attempt using Linux for video (I've used it off and on for a couple years now but never had luck with video applications) and I've got the go ahead to experiment from the guy buying the hardware.  So I can take my time, play and get it right :)

Thanks


Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 26, 2010, 08:09:55 AM
Ray.  Considering your not needing night vision with your motion cameras i'll give you some suggestions.

This is a great camera that covers all the specs well.  I like the outdoor quality bullet cameras becosue they are touch, and their size and method of mounting make them easy to get "Out of the way".

This model is really nice.  A little pricy but you can't go wrong with it.  http://www.securitycameraworld.com/Cameras/Sony-Weatherproof-Mini-Bullet-Camera.asp (http://www.securitycameraworld.com/Cameras/Sony-Weatherproof-Mini-Bullet-Camera.asp)

The specs you want are probably 1/3 inch CCD for any outdoor application
420 lines is what I consider a minimum for anything shooting over 10 feet.  The cheaper cameras do fine inside of 10 ft but you lose lots of quality and detail outside of that.  Since you don't need night vision, anything over 2 or 4 lux is ok.  The lower the lux rating the better your low light video will be (Dusk and dawn).

Here i'll show my ignorance a bit.  I don't know what the "Camera wakeup Speed" is called, so someone help me out here :)  Since you'll be using motion lights at night, the camera will adjust to low light and when the motion lights come on there will be a blind flash and it will take time for the camera to adjust (depending on the location and intensity of your lights, this may not be an issue but you'll have to experiment).  My cheapo webcam type camera loses about 3 to 4 seconds of video during a flash, but I don't' think is as much of a problem with cameras like the bullet above.

Auto features like white balance and gamma correction are great, but they do the most good in low light conditions.   A really good low lux camera (.5 or below) will do an amazing job of adjusting to low light conditions and still get good video.  This is where you'll start to run into issues with night time transition.

When a camera gets close to is low light threshold you start getting an issue (of which I don't know the name) but i'll call it flashing.  Not a problem for straight recording but if you do motion sense controlling it becomes a problem.  The image on the screen at low light will waver or flash, each time it sets off the motion sensing.  Good software can work around by having a variable motion sensing setting, during daylight, more sensitive and then at dusk it tones down.  Again, since you aren't shooting night vision, you could set your sensitivity on motion low enough that it doesn't trip.

Back light compensation is another bonus on some cameras.  This is particularly useful if the camera shoots east or west and the sun can interfere with objects.

If your going to spend a little extra money, i'd put it into the cameras.  
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: DeepSea1985 on January 26, 2010, 03:49:47 PM
Great info guys, keep it going because I'm taking notes since this is also on my "To Do" list. I was considering the wireless cameras at this stage mostly because 2 would be mounted outside probably under the eaves on a two story house, next to the motion sensor spotlights, (another project on the list, not completed), so I can pick up power. Running a lot of coax doesn't sound like fun. But that brings up a question, can you mix hard wired with wireless cameras and still keep the system relatively simple?
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 26, 2010, 08:29:19 PM
Yes you can mix.  The added complexity is mostly in the power supply to the wireless transmitter/camera and the reciever.  Plus the more wireless you run, the more interferance you'll start to run into.  Got to spend more money for higher end wireless gear with more channels.

You can add stand alone wireless cameras, or wired cameras with wireless gear to split the wire.  

If you are going to run a wireless home network, my preference is to put in dedicated wireless cameras on the 802.11x network.  Then you have the best of both worlds.  They can ty into the security recorder and you can log directly into a particular camera (or remotely if it has web server capabilities).  Lots and lots of options.

My experience with wireless cameras is limited to 2 networked wireless cameras (one cheapo and one high end) and 2 cheapo pinhole type cameras (mounted on 2 server racks) that have their own built in transmitters and the receiver picks them up on their own channel.  It works well in good lighting but goes to crap in low light conditions.  (I don't' have any IR on them).

Lighting is really key to quality images.

Running cable is almost always the best option though.  I'd never use wireless unless it is just too prohibitive to run cable (In my case, steel reinforced concrete :) ).  I've never had any issues with the wired cameras.  But even my best wireless camera needs power cycled about once a month.

Doc
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on January 27, 2010, 08:32:22 AM
I'm thinking the smart thing to do now would be to pick up one of the Sony SCW-B42 cameras and a PC card.  Run temp wiring and see how it looks at the different areas I want  to cover.

For a couple nights I can run coax/power over the rooftop to get a feel for lighting, angle etc.   

4 channel PC cards??
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 27, 2010, 08:45:27 AM
This is the higher end card i've been looking at for my next aplication.
http://lorexstore.lorextechnology.com/product.aspx?id=771 (http://lorexstore.lorextechnology.com/product.aspx?id=771)

Its $129 but has some pretty decent software with it.

On the cheaper side, I prefer to use a USB hookup so I can use mini or micro computer based designs.  (PCI card wont fit).  My prefered design is this machine http://www.logicsupply.com/products/de2700 (http://www.logicsupply.com/products/de2700)

The USB adapter is:  http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=5625149&CatId=4445 (http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=5625149&CatId=4445)

This guy is only $35 and works well.  Not as feature rich as the others but for basic monitoring and motion recording it works well enough.  (Softw installation was a bit quirky with the older model I have at work, but once set up it runs fine).  (This is the model I have. http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=2475943&CatId=4445 (http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=2475943&CatId=4445))

I've also looked at the following card also and it looks promising for the price.

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=5272739&CatId=4445 (http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=5272739&CatId=4445)





Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on January 27, 2010, 12:10:06 PM
The Lorex looks good.  I like the functionality of the Inputs/Outputs and the potential of powering the camera's from the card.  I couldn't find what load the power out function could supply, but I didn't dig very deep.

Sending an email to my cell would be fine for a notification.  It looked like you could configure it pretty easily by schedule. 

I do want to 'serve' the video on my home LAN.  OTher than maybe Remote Connection, which some video apps don't like and would limit to one remote user at a time.   I can think of two connections that I'd want, one from the office and one from the kitchen.  The PC itself will be in the bunker... oops... I mean the basement.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: spisblog on January 30, 2010, 07:59:53 AM
I'm VERY interested in the Linux software you used.  I'm working on a similar 3 camera setup for a Carwash in the next couple of months and I wanted something more stable then windows.  I hand't seen anything on Linux yet.  What Linux Distro are you using?

Doc- There's a zoneminder distro for Ubuntu.  I ran it on Ubuntu desktop 8.04.  I'm not sure if there's a later distro- but that worked for me on marginal hardware (for testing).  I need to recreate the setup for real (using a better machine with more storage capacity).  I'm planning on using an old laptop that I can secure in storage area (attic, crawl space, etc.) so it's not easily accessible in case of break-in, plus it will still be able to capture video (battery) in case the power goes out/gets cut off.

Ubuntu is a very easy distro for a Windows user to convert to.  Very stable, easy to use, and easy to maintain (plus it runs well on older hardware).

This is one of my 2010 projects.  I'll post an update when I get around to it.

www.ubunutu.com (http://www.ubunutu.com)
www.zoneminder.com (http://www.zoneminder.com)

Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on January 30, 2010, 08:23:24 AM
Ubunto is good (Still not happy with the package manger but i'm working it ok).  I play with it.  I started with Suse (back in the 7.0 and 8.0 days) and its still my favorite but I've been a little disappointed with the full distro since 9.4 stopped shipping.  They cut way to much out of it (For my full desktop install).  But i'm really liking the smaller distro's.  Puppy is awesome so far (Great compatibility and small footprint).  I also have a feather and a few other distros running on my VM test machine.  I've never had much luck with any video applications.  I was trying to build a dedicated DVR for video 2 years ago but just couldn't get any compatible video drivers for the hardware.  (Ati 8500 DV). 

And to keep this post within the realm of video monitoring and security.  What video card and what multi port capture cards have you had good luck with on Linux?

Thanks

Doc
 
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Tackleberry on January 31, 2010, 03:35:08 PM
Hi gang, I just found this thread & thought I'd share.
Bought in '02, when the neighborhood we're stuck in started going downhill. (have a BOL)
Similar to this...
http://www.worldeyecam.com/store/product.php?productid=17171&cat=589&page=1 (http://www.worldeyecam.com/store/product.php?productid=17171&cat=589&page=1)
I know it's a little on the pricey side but I love it.
From the intel I've gathered, it's saved us several thousand in property damage & theft.
Money well spent. Especially when you overhear the older neighborhood thugs say to the newer neighborhood thugs, "Stay away from their house. They've got security cameras, a dog & who knows what else." They avoid our house like the plague.
Motion sensing lights work really well with this system.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on February 01, 2010, 07:24:45 AM
How does this look?
http://www.samsclub.com/shopping/navigate.do?dest=5&item=467579#reviews (http://www.samsclub.com/shopping/navigate.do?dest=5&item=467579#reviews)
http://defender-usa.com/flash/sn500-4ch/index.php?linkClicked=footage (http://defender-usa.com/flash/sn500-4ch/index.php?linkClicked=footage)
http://www.amazon.com/Defender-SN500-4CH-002-Feature-rich-Channel-Security/dp/B002UKOUTK/ref=pd_cp_p_1 (http://www.amazon.com/Defender-SN500-4CH-002-Feature-rich-Channel-Security/dp/B002UKOUTK/ref=pd_cp_p_1)

I like the idea of a 'system' instead of piecing one together.  How does the 'night vision' camera work if/when your outside lights come on?   I'm guessing there would be a few seconds of blind time until it adjusts.  Having 4 cameras and a DVR for a little over $400 looks pretty attractive.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on February 01, 2010, 07:50:55 AM
I agree with the all in one systems being better.  Its just a matter of cost.  If you can afford something dedicated go for it, if not, we can do our best to hack together a viable solution.

If the cameras are decent the flash blind is pretty minimal.  (I get about 1 second on my high end cameras and about 1.5 to 2 seconds on my rack cameras.).

Some webcams can stall out for 6 or 8 seconds with large light changes so choose your cameras for the lighting. 

I'll look at that other equipment today,  just getting a bit busy this morning again.

Doc
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Tackleberry on February 01, 2010, 10:58:42 AM
Wanted to put together a system, but when we bought it, we needed it yesterday & didn't have the time to figure out what would work best for us. The tech support is pretty nice to have too. Only needed them a couple of times, but they were helpful.

I have never noticed any flash blind with my cams. The system is set up to record only when motion is detected & as soon as the lights come on it starts recording.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on February 18, 2010, 11:15:26 AM
New Turnkey Solution from Night Owl.

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=5256333&CatId=4445 (http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=5256333&CatId=4445)

I just ran across this new setup on tiger.  It is stand alone and runs on 12V.  At that price I would have a hard time building an equivilent system with those cameras unless I got lucky with some free/cheap hardware.

Only problem is I am not seeing a network connection, so most likely you can't network it.  

This other model doesn't include the monitor but is browser controllable and viewable on your network. (Negates the need for a monitor).

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/searchtools/item-Details.asp?EdpNo=5256331&sku=N247-1000&srkey=tiger%204320 (http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/searchtools/item-Details.asp?EdpNo=5256331&sku=N247-1000&srkey=tiger%204320)
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Tackleberry on February 18, 2010, 01:54:16 PM
Thanks for the link. Have a friend looking for something just like that.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: ebonearth on February 18, 2010, 10:22:07 PM
Anyone have any opinion on MJPG vs. MPEG4? I was reading:
http://www.onssi.com/downloads/OnSSI_WP_compression_techniques.pdf (http://www.onssi.com/downloads/OnSSI_WP_compression_techniques.pdf)
Which discusses the differences in compression techniques and how MJPG is better if you need to press charges as MPEG4 can at times be blurry. Thoughts?
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on February 18, 2010, 10:53:28 PM
You do lose a little quality with higher compression.  The biger detriment is lens and focal point.  Cameras have set focal points.  You will only get pristine video at that focal point.  You have to spend some big money to get lenses and cameras that either auto focus or have a wide focal depth.  I have $1000 cameras at work that cover huge parking lots, and the best you can get is a car make and model and color.  Not even close to a license plate.  I have the same camera coving the main entrance at work, and it can't get a license plate 10 feet beyond the focal point which is set to capture faces as people walk in the door.  Its a compromise, I could move the focal point and get license plates but because of the layout of the walkway and doorway, i'd miss the faces.  2 cameras woudl be better, but eventually you have to set a limit or you'd have hundreds of cameras covering 1 small business.

But a cheap $80 webcam in good lighting can get picture perfect video at its normal focal length.  Its all about setting things to capture at their optimal positions. 

The key to good video is mostly in the lenses

However, with the massive storage space available in systems now a days, uncompressed  video should be the default.  Really no need to use higher compression.  A rather nominal 200 gig hard drive can hold days of continous video and 6 months or a year or more of motion capture video.

Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: DeepSea1985 on June 08, 2010, 06:51:07 PM
Things got slow in this thread........I managed to pick up 4 wired cameras on Craig's list, 2 Sony ExwaveHAD and 2 Ultrak KC5520CN  . Next project is to find some combination power & data wire and a card for the PC........Got to go back through this thread and pick out suppliers links and search.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on June 08, 2010, 07:07:22 PM
Things got slow in this thread........I managed to pick up 4 wired cameras on Craig's list, 2 Sony ExwaveHAD and 2 Ultrak KC5520CN  . Next project is to find some combination power & data wire and a card for the PC........Got to go back through this thread and pick out suppliers links and search.

Thanks for the revival.  My work schedule is changing soon (for the better) I'll have some time to get a few of these projects completed.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on June 08, 2010, 07:43:55 PM
I'm just the opposite. My work schedule is going haywire.  Found out today I have to upgrade our Document Imaging system.  This was not on the schedule for another 6 months and now my projects are all over the place.  Plus I discovered the imaging on our truck laptops wont work because of the Hard Drive recovery partition and the Disk encryption.  Get to re image 28 laptops in the next week, which I wasn't expecting to do at all.

I'm going into work an hour early every other day now, which is helping.  Not many people at work between 5:00 and 7:30, get lots done without the (How do I do this and why can't I do that etc).  LOL  Just kidding, I've got a really good user base.  But they do tend to monopolize my time if I let them.

I still need to finish my system instructions and put together the home system.  Hopefully things will calm down after boy scout camps are out of the way.


Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: DeepSea1985 on September 28, 2010, 09:33:40 PM
Knock....knock............anybody home......

Too many threads, so little time to read them all and keep up..................Looks like this one's faded away........
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on September 29, 2010, 06:41:55 AM
My apologies.  I have let this project drop as I've been too busy to keep up on it (or about a half dozen others).  I have 2 boxes of gear just laying around ready to be "Experimented" with but absolutely no time to do it.  I think I might see some daylight at the end of October though.  (Crap, just jinxed myself by saying that  :))

In the mean time, if anyone has questions or comments, I'd be happy to try to answer them as best I can.

Thanks

Doc
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on September 30, 2010, 06:56:52 PM
I want to help... send me your gear and I'll figure something out.   :)
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on November 10, 2010, 04:00:34 PM
Saw a setup at Sam's Club yesterday.  3 cameras and a small video monitor/controller

It was very similar to this : http://www.amazon.com/Uniden-UDW20055-Wireless-Surveillance-System/dp/B002KFZSKA/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1289429785&sr=8-2 (http://www.amazon.com/Uniden-UDW20055-Wireless-Surveillance-System/dp/B002KFZSKA/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1289429785&sr=8-2)

The reviews did not look good.  But, I believe this is the format I'd like to have.  Wireless cameras (I have power in the attic to use) and an included small flat monitor.  I'd also like to access it via PC.  The price is about right at $300 with 3 cameras.

Or there is this one by Lorex (?)
http://www.amazon.com/Lorex-LW2702-Digital-Wireless-Surveillance/dp/B0032HMSIU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1289357791&sr=8-1 (http://www.amazon.com/Lorex-LW2702-Digital-Wireless-Surveillance/dp/B0032HMSIU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1289357791&sr=8-1)

For about the same money.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: cpf240 on November 11, 2010, 02:42:06 PM
Wireless cameras are great in that you don't have to run data cables... but I don't like the fact that anyone with the right receiver can pick up the signal. In most cases, I'm sure its not a problem, but I still prefer to have my feeds kept private. Are there encrypted wireless cameras, or perhaps cameras that run over your wireless network using WEP or something similar?

........  But, I believe this is the format I'd like to have.  Wireless cameras (I have power in the attic to use) and an included small flat monitor.  I'd also like to access it via PC.  The price is about right at $300 with 3 cameras.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on November 11, 2010, 03:29:48 PM
Anyone with the ability and the intent to jam my video signal may as well walk in and take what they want.  Its all about risk assessment.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on January 05, 2011, 04:01:16 PM
Finished a couple other projects, currently looking to revive this one. 

I have a second PC with a two channel TV card.  I'm planning on running a cable (BNC connections with attached 12 volt power )  http://www.smarthome.com/76088/Swann-SW224-P61-US000-PRO-610-Wide-Angle-Night-Vision-Security-Camera-with-35-IR-LEDs/p.aspx (http://www.smarthome.com/76088/Swann-SW224-P61-US000-PRO-610-Wide-Angle-Night-Vision-Security-Camera-with-35-IR-LEDs/p.aspx)

Still getting lost with the specs.  Plus, the PC I'm using is kinda limited, so its possible that I'll spend even more on upgrades.  I only need one camera now, but I'd like to expand.  Geez... like most projects, the more  I learn and read the loster I get. ;)
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on January 13, 2011, 07:17:45 PM
Ordered the camera(s) the other day, hopefully they'll be in tomorrow.
I've been testing BlueIris software with my webcam.  I need more ram in the PC, its an older Dell Dimension, but only  has 256M and the SW recommends a gig. 


Here's more of an open question rather than a technical one.  Why.  Why setup video monitoring.  I like the idea of having it 'just in case' something happens such as a trespasser or burglary, we'll at least have a good time stamp on it.  Whether the video will be useful or not in recovering the stuff or catching the bad guy who knows.  Either way it would be good to have.  If the neighborhood goes to hell, it would be good to be able to see intruders before they become burglars or home invaders, but its not like you're going to be sitting there waiting for something to happen.

The wife is a little creaped out about having cameras around.  She knows about the one I've been testing with, and she knows I'm putting one up outside to view the driveway. Truth is, I have a couple more also that where just a good deal.  I'm going to test them out and see how they look, if they're good enough, I may end up returning the higher end model.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Joseph Seal on February 25, 2011, 09:58:02 AM
Foscam makes some decent affordable ip cams
http://www.foscam.com/ (http://www.foscam.com/)

they are often counterfeited though so make sure you buy from a source they recommend. Just a side note.....pzt(pan, zoom, tilt) cameras are fun to play with but they never seem to be pointed at the right place at the right time.

Good call on zoneminder, I have zoneminder running on ubuntu at several business and have had great results....but it is a bandwith hog
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on February 25, 2011, 11:00:07 AM
Is your Ubunto/Zoneminder box committed to cams or is it a multitasker?    I have a windows box right now doing the job, but I'm limited to one camera (which is ok for now) If I end up using it often or if the crime rate starts going up I'll probably go for a specific DVR box.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: willille on February 25, 2011, 04:30:40 PM
My son has zoneminder set up on a linux box and he runs 4 cameras.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: ag2 on April 21, 2011, 08:19:38 PM
My employer closed up a shop and asked if I wanted it.  PDVR-4300 with a single camera.  Not sure what kind yet.
This is the box.  I don't know anything about it yet. 
http://www.powertelecomm.com/product/standalone.html (http://www.powertelecomm.com/product/standalone.html)
http://www.hiwtc.com/products/dvr-pentaplex-4639-23665.htm (http://www.hiwtc.com/products/dvr-pentaplex-4639-23665.htm)

Is it worth setting up?  Worth selling?  Can't find much about it, it might be a bit old, but it is still a DVR.  What would you do with it?
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Tackleberry on April 21, 2011, 10:06:36 PM

If it works, I'd take it!
Even if it's only a single cam, you can dedicate it to your main area of concern.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: ag2 on April 21, 2011, 11:18:08 PM
Brought it home.  Set it up.  Seems to work great.  Single camera, but four channels.  It has a LAN port.  I wonder if I can direct my little wireless Linksys WVC80N camera to stream to one of the channels?  That could be cool.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: JGreene on April 22, 2011, 08:14:58 AM
Brought it home.  Set it up.  Seems to work great.  Single camera, but four channels.  It has a LAN port.  I wonder if I can direct my little wireless Linksys WVC80N camera to stream to one of the channels?  That could be cool.
Doubtful.  I don't believe these units have much 'customization'.  You can however access the controls and video via your LAN.  There are some pretty reasonable cameras out there that give you a decent picture.  Like most things, it runs quite a range of quality and expense depending what you're looking for.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: ag2 on June 12, 2011, 08:58:43 PM
I've got a problem and need some help.

I've mounted the camera about 10-12 feet up, on the corner of the house and aimed the camera at the back patio capturing the back door because it is the most vulnerable (glass, sliding).  The camera has infrared.  At night, when the infrared turns on, I lose my picture.  The screen flickers with static.  The problem is that my wire is about 75 or 100 feet and DC doesn't travel well.  (that's one reason current is delivered to our homes in AC)  This is a 12 VDC camera.  When I bypass the long wire and plug the power directly into the camera, this problem does not occur.

I'm open to suggestions.  My thoughts:  I do not really need the full length of wire.  I could get by with about 20 feet, but I would rather not cut the wire shorter and re-terminate the ends or splice the wire.  It just seems wrong and there's no guarantee that this would solve the problem.

I could buy a different power adapter, re-terminate the end, and send 13 or 14 VDC, but I would likely be playing a guessing game at how loss is occurring and much current I would deliver at the far end.  (I guess I could get out the multimeter)

I'm sure someone else has a better idea.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Tackleberry on June 13, 2011, 01:47:37 PM
Could be a defective supply side in your wire. Your ohm meter will tell you.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: NotoriousAPP on July 05, 2011, 09:03:58 AM
I'm using an older version of this receiver (minus the camera)  (http://www.buy.com/prod/q-see-qswlocr-2-4-ghz-wireless-outdoor-camera-kit-with-receiver-20ft/q/loc/101/204849421.html (http://www.buy.com/prod/q-see-qswlocr-2-4-ghz-wireless-outdoor-camera-kit-with-receiver-20ft/q/loc/101/204849421.html))  I have one at each office location, but i'm going to be adding another 2 or 3 cameras when we restructure our building and i'll want to pick up a multichanel receiver to replace them with.

This has been running hands off with no user intervention for 3 years now without a glitch. 

This type of camera and receive would fit me needs perfectly (I need to be able to monitor a live camera of my front door) however I noticed for the camera you mentioned that a lot of people have had problems with this unit interfering with their wireless internet connection.  Seems to be specific to the 2.4 GHz operating frequency since other cameras I've looked at with this frequency range have similar comments from users.  Is there a way around this or can you recommend a camera similar to this one but which operates at a different frequency?
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on July 05, 2011, 10:10:05 AM
I did have a little interference on the 2.4 gig wireless when it rolled channels (would slowly degrade signal after about 72 hours and need to be power cycled to clear), Might have been the old Linksys 54G,  I replaced it 2 weeks later with a Netgear WG102 series and pushed the netgear up to higher channels.  (12 seemed to do the trick nicely) and have not had any problems with it at all since then. 

I have since pulled these cameras out after a surge fried both cameras in a thunderstorm (Suspected lighting strike) earlier this year.  I have not replaced them yet as we are considering an upgraded system and 4 to 8 new cameras which will have to be a budget item for next year.

Hope that helps.   

Doc
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: KSDeputy on October 03, 2011, 03:59:02 PM
I have been wanting an affordable wireless system, and like Mr. Greene saw the Uniden system at Sam's for $ 300. It comes with 3 cameras and can use only one more. The extra cam costs $ 100. I bought a smaller system with one camera, to see my gate from the house. I  put the camera in the window, but the gate was 250' away and it was just too far. I took it back. The newer system has two outside cameras, and one inside camera. I have electricity at the gate and could put the camera there. The problem is we live on a dusty gravel road. I would have to constantly be cleaning the lens on both of the outside cameras, even though they are in a plastic enclosure. This would be the case with whatever camera I chose, if it is mounted outside. Panasonic makes a much more expensive wireless system. They have a free website so you can call in and actually see what the cameras are seeing. It would cost 3x-4x what the Uniden system costs. I will keep watching for newer more sophisticated systems as they develop, I have not yet found what I want yet. At least what I want and can afford. My place is very well lighted at night with HP sodium lights, and pir switched white flood lamps on each corner of the house. If anyone finds the ideal, affordable system for a rural application, please let us know.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: ag2 on October 05, 2011, 10:07:39 AM
I have been wanting an affordable wireless system, and like Mr. Greene saw the Uniden system at Sam's for $ 300. It comes with 3 cameras and can use only one more. The extra cam costs $ 100. I bought a smaller system with one camera, to see my gate from the house. I  put the camera in the window, but the gate was 250' away and it was just too far. I took it back. The newer system has two outside cameras, and one inside camera. I have electricity at the gate and could put the camera there. The problem is we live on a dusty gravel road. I would have to constantly be cleaning the lens on both of the outside cameras, even though they are in a plastic enclosure. This would be the case with whatever camera I chose, if it is mounted outside. Panasonic makes a much more expensive wireless system. They have a free website so you can call in and actually see what the cameras are seeing. It would cost 3x-4x what the Uniden system costs. I will keep watching for newer more sophisticated systems as they develop, I have not yet found what I want yet. At least what I want and can afford. My place is very well lighted at night with HP sodium lights, and pir switched white flood lamps on each corner of the house. If anyone finds the ideal, affordable system for a rural application, please let us know.

I just saw a solar panel, gate relay, and intercom system on sale (Clearance) at Lowes yesterday.  I did not spend much time looking, but it looks like a complete kit, with each part sold separately.  You could buy just the solar panel to provide power at the gate.  Of course, you could take the fancy approach and buy a motorized security gate, keypad-secured, etc.

A little Rain-X will help reduce the number of times you need to clean the lense.  If the lenses still get too dirty, you can try to enclose them in a box, but slant the window side down toward the ground so that the dust does not have a surface on which to settle.  The globe style enclosures solve the dust problem also.  You see these on ceilings within stores.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: NWBowhunter on February 25, 2013, 01:53:02 PM
Invested in an eight camera Lorex system from Costco. I am impressed with video quality in day and night. Have cameras covering Front, back, and the one side with vehicles. Need to mount last three, two of those will cover the remaining perimeter. Question is should I have an internal camera or use the final one to catch traffic on the road?  I am leaning toward the road while it will be covering public space it is more likely to catch someone casing the place. Interior cam seems to be to little to late.
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: Docwatmo on February 25, 2013, 02:54:07 PM
One thing that can be handy, Point your recording device to a portable hard drive hidden deep inside the house somewhere.   Then put at least one camera in a central location that will catch traffic as the crooks move around the house.  This may help identify the crooks (more details etc) and help get your stuff back if it is stolen.    I would expect any skillful crook to consider cameras and look for and take with them the main recording box and any any computers they find (An attempt to remove video evidence).  But if you network the device, you can used any attached storage device on the network to store the video (or even a copy of the video).  They may find and take the computers, but if they don't trace down all network connected devices, they won't find the external hard drive.

Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: NWBowhunter on February 25, 2013, 03:46:13 PM
The DVR is separated from the computer and hidden. So that it will not be an item that is easy to take. Good idea to push the alarm video that is recorded to the separate  destination.
 
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: jim124816 on February 25, 2013, 07:19:16 PM
Below is al link to another thread on TSP that is related to this one.  I discussed a family of Axis products that some of you may find compatible with your goals.  They do work with ZoneMinder (I don't use it though).  I am moving to a new home in North Texas in about three weeks, so I will be installing a new system in it soon.  I already have the gear, but getting the family settled in and a garden bed prepared will top the list of things to do. 

My system will be a wired/802.11 hybrid IP system with at least 8 cameras, email notification of motion in areas where there should be no motion with attached still images of what was in motion.  When I am done, I may be able to write up a "what I did" thing if anyone is interest.

http://thesurvivalpodcast.com/forum/index.php?topic=37172.msg423851#msg423851
Title: Re: Video Monitoring and Security
Post by: ag2 on February 26, 2013, 10:33:58 PM
My 2 cents:
Put your nice cameras on the outside.  Put a cheap, networked, webcam inside.  Set up the motion sensor feature of the webcam to point toward your DVR, SAN, or valuables.  Send email alerts to a Google email address.  Set up a specific alert/alarm on your smart phone.  Even if you do not have a smart phone, you will have pics of the thief on a Google account, rather than a local drive that can go bad or be stolen.

I did this while selling my previous house.  We had three kids and did not like the "four hour window" that the realtors wanted.  Phone beeped from motion detector (with pics) and I knew that we would go home in 20 minutes rather than 3 hours later.  (The realtors would not provide the courtesy of a phone call when done showing the house.)