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What Is A Video Surveillance System?

A video surveillance system is primarily designed to watch a business or home for inappropriate or illegal activity, and record it for possible future use.

A video surveillance system is normally composed of 4-8 cameras for homes and small businesses, as well as a way to record the video, and the required cables to power the cameras, and send the video back to be recorded.

Until recently, pretty much every video surveillance system used analog CCTV cameras that watched building entrances, as well as key areas inside and outside. These cameras would require a Siamese cable to not only transport the video into the recorder, it would also send power to operate the camera on a cable that was attached next to it, like a Siamese twin.

You would need some way to record the video from your surveillance system, and this has evolved from 20th century VCR's, up to the TiVo like digital video recorder (DVR).

In the 21st century, video surveillance systems have evolved to HD quality digital network cameras that can do the work of 4 CCTV cameras. These IP cameras are little computers with a lens that do a lot of the work the DVR once performed like motion detection, tampering, and on camera storage to reduce the strain on your bandwidth.

And all that is required is one Ethernet cable that not only sends your digital video; it can power the camera, cutting down the need for costly cable.

As video surveillance systems evolve, more emphasis is placed on the camera doing the majority of the work, and the network video recorder (NVR) can be placed offsite, allowing for further security, and reducing the chance the criminal can steal it, unlike the VCR or DVR, which could be stolen as well, taking all your video.

Christopher Winkler
Spy Gear And Surveillance Product Expert

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