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Recommendations for IP cams, switch, nvr


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#1 JimS

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Posted 16 March 2019 - 08:18 AM

Want to set up several outside cameras.  Have not followed the area closely but a bit over the years.  Thinking I want something in the 2k - 4k range for cameras, IP, probably POE.  That means I need a POE switch I think.  Haven't settled on a nvr - had looked at ZoneMinder (http://zoneminder.com) in the past but have read reviews it isn't keeping up with the industry but that could be wrong.  Will have a couple cameras on a detached garage about 50 feet from the house and several on the house.  Probably 4 to 8 total.  Want to go wired not wireless and will have ethernet cable between buildings (could be fiber but I doubt it). 

 

Can I get decent cameras for $100 each?  All or at least most will be outdoors under eves and only somewhat protected from weather.  There are tons out there so any specific recommendations?

 

Not really familiar with switches vs. routers.  Can I use a 16 port switch and use it for routing the PCs and other things or should I do the network differently?

 

Have fooled a bit with a web cam and motion on a raspberry pi and realize that motion detection outside is pretty poor but would like some sort of motion detection.  If its on a porch or something without a lot of plants to sway in the wind and light changes then maybe detection based on the picture would work but I could put up a couple of IR motion detectors.

 

Any advice is appreciated.

 

 



#2 upstatemike

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Posted 16 March 2019 - 08:40 AM

I switched my 6 cameras to these https://www.amazon.c...0?ie=UTF8&psc=1 last Summer because I couldn't come up with any reason to use something more expensive. They are mounted under the eves but otherwise exposed to weather and I have had no problems with them.

 

You will need a small POE switch (they are cheap) in your detached garage to split the Ethernet feed to handle your two cameras and potentially an access point or other gear. I would also put a small UPS out there to keep the cameras up during power glitches but that's just me. Another small POE switch can handle the cameras in the main house.

 

I use camera motion to trigger email snapshots of my doors but the cameras are angled to not pick up any trees or other background motion that can cause a false trigger. I still sometimes get false triggers from spiders and such. I would not use camera motion as a general purpose outdoor motion detector.


Edited by upstatemike, 16 March 2019 - 08:41 AM.


#3 JimS

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Posted 16 March 2019 - 09:14 AM

So I could just use a switch in the garage for cameras and other stuff (PC, etc)?  Router in the house would provide DHCP and such (cameras would have fixed addresses)?  Any recommendations for a small POE switch?  With two cams and a few other things I probably should get one with 5 - 8 ports.  Do I need to separate the feed of the cams from the other traffic to the house and the NVR?  I have heard recommendations of gigabit at least for the uplink to the house.



#4 upstatemike

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Posted 16 March 2019 - 10:12 AM

I use these for POE https://www.amazon.c...gateway&sr=8-15 but other folks might have alternative suggestions.

 

Unless you are planning on a huge number of cameras i don't see any value in separate feeds.

 

I would use Cat6 and plan for Gigabit capable connections.



#5 LarrylLix

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Posted 16 March 2019 - 11:06 AM

Here are the cheapies I mentioned with two way sound, and a real nice app for iPhone. I am an Android user but I am sure it would be available also.

When the SIL bought four they were under $25 CAD each. I don;t know about triggered event support on them.

These are much better quality pictures, better in the dark and 1/0 the price of my Dahua PTZ unit. Wall mounts are available for a few more $.

 

https://www.amazon.c...ay&sr=8-1-spell


Edited by LarrylLix, 16 March 2019 - 11:08 AM.


#6 linuxha

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Posted 16 March 2019 - 07:02 PM

Folks thanks for the recommendations. I'm going to give the camera's Mike suggested a try. I think I'll play with Shinobi at the moment I don't know if I need a DVR but I would like to replace all the other cameras I've played with.

 

What about PTZ camera's?



#7 JimS

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Posted 16 March 2019 - 07:58 PM

I am not well versed on this but from what I have read most recommend against PTZ cams.  If it is going to nvr the camera may not be pointing at what you need to capture.  Better to just get a camera (or several) to cover the area.  If you are going to be viewing them live that's a different story.



#8 upstatemike

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Posted 16 March 2019 - 08:22 PM

I had Panasonic PTZ cameras before these. Almost never moved them (except to put them back if a power glitch or something moved them to a home position instead of where I wanted them to point).



#9 Linwood

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Posted 16 March 2019 - 08:36 PM

I'm in the middle of doing this also for a new house, and am going to splurge and go with 4K cameras.  I figure that will push my storage (and maybe processing) a bit, but the cameras should last many years, and storage and processing is always getting faster, and there's a HUGE difference in what you can see in newer 4K cameras and some of the older HD (only) cameras.

 

I just got a Lorex LNE890A and experimented a bit, and just ordered 3 more but the varifocal versions LNE8974BW for about $20 more; I figure the optical zoom is well worth it not because I'll zoom in use, but I can fine tune each's field of view.  They are about $200 on Amazon at present, so a bit pricey, but some brief use made me quite happy with their performance.

 

I was surprised they also included audio (microphone), so now I have to do some checking about the legalities of it (in our retarded legal system video is almost always legal but audio is problematic). \

 

It's worth noting that as you go up in price, you may get nothing for well lit, up close scenes, but for night (under IR), poor light, or more distant subjects the very low end devices may not cut it.  I had a bunch of circa 2013 Hikvisions, and they were programmable -- I could script routines to adjust settings at given times, to pull stills periodically and upload to the cloud, etc.  Having such an interface to the camera is another feature you may or may not need.

 

I recommend getting one of whatever you are considering and play extensively to make sure they do what you want.

 

Re switch and garage -- I wouldn't put a switch in the garage if it gets too hot.  Many will work in higher temperatures, but it ages them faster, and some will overheat and fail.  Same with attics.  Or at least check the operating specs.



#10 JimS

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Posted 17 March 2019 - 09:01 AM

One thing I am still pondering is IR lights.  A lot of cameras have them build in but I have read that if you want IR lights they should be off the camera as they attract some bugs - this keeps the bugs away from the camera lens.  The other thing is that they have limited range.  I can see them being useful for fairly short range such as when a camera is on a porch but much less so when they are looking at another building 50 feet away.  If the camera has low light capability, perhaps switching to black and white, that would be more useful than IR for that situation.  Do most cameras have the ability to turn off the IR?

 

Especially is the view has close and far objects the IR will illuminate the near objects and cause the far objects to be too dark to see.  Without illumination the far objects might be light enough to be captured.



#11 JimS

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Posted 17 March 2019 - 09:30 AM

SVC3 camera looks pretty good but has 11% of 1 star reviews.  I understand that there will always be a few complaints but this seems high.  Also some comments that this camera "phones home" sending data to foreign IP addresses.  I see recommendations to set up the network to block this.



#12 upstatemike

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Posted 17 March 2019 - 10:09 AM

The suggestion to buy one and test it out is a good one. I am satisfied with the built-in IR. The bug issue is real but I am not convinced that it is only due to the IR light. Spiders like anything that sticks out to provide anchors for their webs. I would wire for separate IR but wait until you test the built-in light before purchasing extra hardware.

 

Phone home is certainly a concern. If somebody does research on this it would be interesting to know if actual video gets transmitted or if it is just a ping of some sort.



#13 linuxha

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Posted 17 March 2019 - 10:34 AM

I was screwing around with some camera's that I was able to hack and the initial setup was phoned home as well as everything else (sound and video). I had blocked them until one day my router up and died. I forgot about the camera's and they managed to escape, update their firmware and was never hackable again (well not easily hackable). They've been relegated to the spare parts bin. So I learned that lesson and will have the cameras more separated to their own vlan. I really need to sit down and design a proper network for this stuff. But first I need to update a bunch of equipment.

 

BTW, I really want to find something that is less hacked and more consumer friendly. I think my wife would be okay with having the security system visible on one of the spare HDMI inputs on the TV but I also think she want to see it available on the phone.



#14 JimS

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Posted 17 March 2019 - 01:14 PM

Apparently this (phoning home) is done on many consumer camera to allow app access when off the local network.  I think this avoids having to put a hole in the firewall making it easier for the average person to set up.  Still concerning from a security perspective...Might put off purchase until I can understand it and how to block it a bit better.  I don't need app access, perhaps through the nvr but not individual cams.



#15 pete_c

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Posted 18 March 2019 - 09:20 AM

Relating to your endeavor check out the numerous CCTV forums relating to cameras and NVRs.

 

Look at the cameras and focus on these first, then later a software or hardware NVR that works with whatever cameras you decide on....baby steps fashion.

 

Today many IP cameras are cheap and automagically connect to cloud services and come with smart phone apps for those that are tethered to their smart phones for automation and security nowadays.

 

It is really though what you want and are looking for.  Best and easy button methodology is a dedicated autonomous CCTV system with it's own NVR that serves one purpose and function. 

 

Relating to an NVR you can purchase an all in one box with POE ports dedicated to cameras and using a separate physical network.  Many of these boxes though are dedicated and most vendors do not publish the APIs.  I personally went to using Axis CCTV servers and did buy one NVR that remains in the box today.

 

Software wise NVRs are plentyful for Windows and Linux.  Linux are open source and free.  Historically here utilized ZM. 






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