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Different types of CCTV cameras

There are many different types of CCTV Cameras on the market. This page should help you work out exactly what you're after.

Bullet-type CCTV cameras

day/night cameras

Traditional day-night bullet cameras are designed to be mounted either inside or outside and incorporate built-in Infrared (I/R) illumination. As light levels fall the Infrared lights switch on automatically and the camera changes from colour to black and white. Black and white cameras require less light to work and respond to Infrared lighting.

A traditional-looking CCTV camera provides a strong visual deterrent. Easy to fit and adjust with versatile mounts. The camera body is able to incorporate longer lenses which makes this style of camera the natural choice for long-distance work. They can still be used for shorter-distance applications. We sell these in 3 lens ranges, 2.8-12mm, 6-22mm and 5-50mm. We also sell a smaller fixed-lens bullet camera


Vandal Dome cameras

vandal dome camera

Vandal dome cameras are designed for use in hostile environments with the camera electronics housed behind a clear dome for protection. It also makes it harder to see exactly where the camera is pointing. Our vandal dome cameras have a tough metal body and are fitted with a versatile 2.8-12mm lens which covers most applications up to a distance of 15m. Fitting and adjusting these cameras can be a little tricky and the built-in infrared light tends not to be as efficient due to potential internal reflection from the clear dome. Consider using the open-face vandal dome cameras instead.


Open-faced Vandal Dome cameras

open dome camera

Open-face vandal dome cameras offer much of the protection afforded by traditional vandal dome cameras but are easier to install and the infrared illumination is more effective because there is no way for it to reflect back into the camera lens. Our cameras are all metal in construction and have a number of features that make fitting easier. We sell a large open-face dome camera that has a versatile 2.8-12mm varifocal lens and a small version featuring a fixed focal length lens of either 3.6mm (wide angle) or 8mm (narrow-angle).

Extremely versatile these can be used inside or outdoors and are suitable for short to mid-range applications up to around 15m. For longer-range detail capture, you would need to use a traditional bullet-style camera that can accommodate the larger lenses.


Internal dome cameras

internal dome camera

Internal dome cameras have plastic housings and do not feature infrared illumination. Their lighter weight makes them ideal for suspended ceilings. Stylish in design they blend into most interiors and are only suitable for internal use. For industrial applications consider using open-faced vandal dome cameras or even traditional day/night cameras where longer distances are involved.


Speed dome or PTZ cameras

PTZ camera

Speed dome or PTZ (pan tilt zoom) cameras have electronic motors allowing remote control of movement in all directions. You can also zoom in and out remotely. It is tempting to see PTZ cameras as the ideal solution because they can easily be re-positioned but unless you have a full-time operator they can be an expensive folly. When pointing in one direction they are not filming in another and when moving they tend not to give good images due to blurring. In most instances, we would suggest fitting more fixed cameras for the same price.

Some PTZ cameras have the ability to automatically track targets as they move about. The problem comes when you have more than one target and the technology does rely on the camera being pointed in the right direction to start with. We would suggest keeping things simple and fitting more fixed cameras for the same price.

Mini Bullet Cameras

cam bullet.jpg

Mini Bullet cameras are shaped, how did you guess, like a bullet these don't come with infrared illumination and tend to be used for slightly more discreet purposes due to their less intrusive appearance. The camera size limits the maximum lens that can be used making them unsuitable for longer-distance applications. Some bullet cameras are suitable for external use, others are only designed for internal fitment.

We sell a fixed lens and a varifocal version of our bullet cameras.

Covert Cameras

cam covert.jpg

As the name suggests, covert cameras are small cameras that are easy to tuck away somewhere out of sight or cameras that are disguised as another object such as our PIR detector camera. These all have fixed focal length lenses, mostly wide-angle. The ultimate performance will never be as good as standard cameras due to the restricted size of the lens which limits light entry. Only being available with a fixed lens also means detail capture can not be maximised.


Box or Body cameras

These are the type of cameras you would traditionally associate with CCTV from the 1970s and '80s. Not the best-looking camera in the world, they need special housing if you want to protect them from the elements, are more prone to damage and can sometimes take a bit of setting up. Camera bodies and lenses were usually sold separately. These cameras have largely been replaced by more modern designs these days.