Pros and cons of IP based CCTV
08 February 2022
If the security of
your business or organisation’s premises is worth protecting, it’s worth
protecting well. Many companies rely on closed circuit television (CCTV) to
safeguard their buildings, car parks, staff and visitors, deter crime and provide
reliable coverage in the event that it’s needed.
‘internet-protocol’ CCTV cameras use the internet to receive and store images,
rather than the digital video recorder used by traditional analogue systems. IP
cameras represent the most advanced and multipurpose CCTV solution on the
market, but that’s not to say an analogue system cannot protect your premises
just as well. Not every organisation will need the extra features that IP
cameras offer so, to help you determine which option could be right for you, we’ve
weighed up the pros and cons of IP based CCTV.
Advantages of IP cameras
IP CCTV cameras are
packed full of valuable features, including:
Excellent image resolution
If you need crisp,
clear images, you’ll need to opt for IP cameras. The image resolution of IP
cameras is far superior to that of analogue cameras – up to 20 times better -
and, once they’re installed, you can zoom in and focus on any finer details
within shot remotely.
Easy to install
An IP camera connects
to a network switch via a single cable, which both powers the camera and
transmits data. Analogue cameras need two wires to function. There’s also less
equipment involved with IP cameras, as you don’t need an encoder or decoder to
convert data into video, and you can add as many IP cameras as you like without
having to purchase additional network video recorders.
IP cameras capture
encrypted and authenticated video footage, making them more secure than their
Compatibility and multi-functionality
Linked to an open
platform, IP cameras can be integrated easily with many other web-based,applications, such as
access control and time and attendance management systems. This boosts the scope
of what’s possible through a security system no end; saving time manually
inputting data into multiple applications, or enabling you to set IP cameras to
sync up with your workers’ hours spent in remote or less populated areas of
Accessible from anywhere
Feeds from IP cameras
can be viewed from any device with an internet connection, with the right
permissions to login to the system, of course. This means you can view live or
recorded security footage on any computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone, from
anywhere, or even control the system remotely in the same way.
Convenient data storage
Being connected to the
internet, the footage and data captured by IP cameras goes straight into a
central information repository on a cloud-based computer server. There’s no
need to store dozens of tapes or CDs of footage, or even take up space on your
own servers – it’s all stored on the cloud. This also means you’ll still have
your footage even if a camera is stolen or damaged.
Disadvantages of IP cameras
The downsides of IP
CCTV cameras include:
The longer list of
features of IP cameras does mean they come with a higher price tag than
analogue cameras. Switching from analogue to IP cameras can also involve a high
outlay, but once a system is installed, it’s far easier to scale it up or down
Demand on bandwidth
Obviously, as IP
cameras are connected to the internet, you’ll need a decent internet connection
with plenty of bandwidth to support them.
Making the switch from analogue
If you already have an
analogue CCTV system and you’re thinking of upgrading to IP cameras, there’s
more good news. IP cameras can generally use the same wiring as an analogue
solution, so you can replace your cameras as many as you like at a time, starting
with the most important ones. Running a hybrid analogue/IP CCTV system in the
meantime will help to spread costs.
Before you start
swapping out your cameras though, take time to assess your security plan in
terms of whether or not it still meets organisational needs. You may have
cameras where you don’t need them, or areas of your site that aren’t
sufficiently covered. It’s a great opportunity to make sure your new IP cameras
will create a CCTV system that reflects your current security requirements, as
well as offering scope to scale up in the future.
Another important part
of the planning stage is deciding what you need your new IP cameras to be able
to do. As we mentioned above, IP cameras have a long list of functions and
features that can streamline your operational processes in huge variety of
ways, so think carefully about what you want to achieve. This is where a
specialist CCTV partner like Touchstar can help; our friendly team are expertly
placed to talk you through what’s possible within your premises and budget in
order to create the perfect IP CCTV solution.
Start designing your IP camera system
IP cameras offer the
very best standards of CCTV security, so if your organisation is ready to benefit from all they can do, speak to us today.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR – LYNDEN JONES
Lynden joined Touchstar ATC (formally Feedback Data) in a sales role for Access Control in 2010. Prior to joining the company, Lynden held both Production and Account Manager roles, gaining wide technical and commercial experience within the electronics market.
In 2013 Lynden was promoted to Sales Director and in 2017 he took overall responsibility of the business as Managing Director. As well as running Touchstar ATC, Lynden still remains extremely active in the sales and key account management aspects of the business. When not involved in the business, Lynden is a keen performance car enthusiast.