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Information is king, detail is everything when it comes to CCTV and the measure such things is pixels right? Well sort of yes, and sort of no....
The more pixels you have the more detail you can potentially record so in theory HD CCTV is best. But what exactly is HD CCTV? We put together a guide to HD CCTV recently which hopefully explains things. You need to keep you wits about you because different people seem to have different views on what exactly constitutes high definition when it comes to the world of CCTV. We have seen standard definition D1 and 960H referred to as high resolution and we regularly see 720P referred to as HD when it might be more accurately described as half HD. We define HD as 1080P, 1920 x 1080 pixels or 2.1 megapixel. That is enough to give superb CCTV. But only if don't waste those valuable pixels.
Having invested in all those pixels you need to make sure you don't waste them. People think that by fitting an HD1080P DVR they're all sorted and any old camera will do. In the vast majority of cases that means a fixed lens wide angle camera. Unfortunately that will simply spread pixels too wide apart meaning no detail. We always liken it to heating your house with all the windows wide open, no matter how high you turn the boiler up the house will still be freezing. Flick through these 2 images and compare the detail. The wide angle image wastes pixels and little actual detail is captured. Have a look at our HD1080P lens comparison images
Up to a point. You need to increase the number of pixels 4 fold to double the quality of the image. HD1080P is twice as good as standard resolution, you can identify twice the distance away and film twice as wide. To get the same benefit over 1080P you need 8 megapixels. The problem doing that is you are now generating 16 times the amount of data to store. A DVR that used to store footage for a week now only records for 10 hours, one that used to record for a fortnight now only records for less than a day. You could throw hard drives at the problem but it is expensive. HD1080P is the perfect compromise between detail, area covered and storage. It is unlikely to change for quite some time.
So what is the best CCTV System then ?
Exact camera choice will depend on specific location but in general terms we would suggest an HD1080P capable DVR recorder with sufficient hard drive capacity to store footage for about 3 weeks. Enough cameras to cover all your areas of concern and where possible the use of varifocal cameras so you can balance area covered with detail captured. Zoom in for more detail, zoom out for more area but less detail. Finally most people want to be able to remote access their CCTV system, all our DVRs support this function.
If you are planning a CCTV system and want help please don't hesitate to get in touch with us. We can chat through your requirements whilst looking at the property over the internet and advise accordingly.
3 March 2016
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