Best Strategy For Monitoring Security Cameras

upstatemike

Senior Member
I'm looking for the best strategy going forward for monitoring security cameras. Currently I run Blue Iris at my desk with a large monitor giving me a nice view of my 6 main camera feeds. Any time I am at my desk and I hear a voice alert from the driveway sensor or doorbell I can just glance up quickly and see what is going on so I can decide how to react. This works really well but I need to extend that same experience to other locations in the house where I am likely to be much of the time (bedroom, kitchen, workshop, etc.) so I'm trying to decide the best strategy to accomplish this.
 
The biggest requirement is that the streaming video needs to be available instantly when I hear an alert. A solution that has to be turned on, switched to, or in any way manually brought up is going be too slow to catch what is going on. I know this from experimenting with cloud cams and Echo Show and other options where the camera stream is not already being delivered to the viewing device when you need to look at it. Some of the options I am considering are:
 
1- Distributing the existing video from my Blue Iris server over some sort of Cat5 splitter/extender device. (The wiring could be difficult to some locations)
 
2- Get a bunch of 10 inch Fire tablets from Amazon and run Tinycam or something similar to directly display the camera feeds (Not sure how many feeds each camera can serve or what this would do to my Wi-Fi)
 
3- Use Fire tablets and some sort of HA software to give me a control surface and let the HA software automatically switch to the camera stream view when a driveway detector or doorbell is triggered (Not sure what HA platform will support this and deliver a live stream instead of a snapshot. Also not sure that the camera stream could be brought up any faster than the Echo which has already proven unacceptable. I guess the cameras would need to be streaming to the tablet all the time and the trigger just brings the video screen to the top.)
 
Any other options I should consider? Anybody have experience to promote or rule out one of the options above?
 

upstatemike

Senior Member
lanbrown said:
Why not just use BlueIris like you do now and either
1) Use RDP
2) Use the Blue Iris app on an Amazon Fire tablet that has been side-loaded with Google Play store?
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.blueirissoftware.blueiris&hl=en_US
Good suggestions. Would RDP be better than VNC? I currently use Tight VNC to access my Homeseer server and some other PCs supporting Home Automation.
 
I'm not familiar with the Blue Iris tablet app. I'll have to check it out.
 
Thanks.
 

lanbrown

Active Member
RDP is builtin to Windows.
 
The Blue Iris app can run on phones as well.  It will connect to your Blue Iris server and get the stream from it.  So the camera only sends a single stream.
 
You could also just use the web interface to Blue Iris as well.
 

upstatemike

Senior Member
lanbrown said:
RDP is builtin to Windows.
 
The Blue Iris app can run on phones as well.  It will connect to your Blue Iris server and get the stream from it.  So the camera only sends a single stream.
 
You could also just use the web interface to Blue Iris as well.
I'll have to look into that as well... is the web interface documented on the Blue Iris site? Just now looking into expanding my viewing locations so never paid any attention to these features before.
 

upstatemike

Senior Member
Well that was easy. Came right up on my laptop. Also tried it on a Fire tablet using the built-in Silk browser and that seems to work fine as well. All my Fire tablets have Google Store on them so I could also try the Android app. What does that do for me that the web interface does not?
 

apostolakisl

Senior Member
I have Roku's on all my TV's.  There is a roku app that links to blue iris (or other).  From within Blue Iris, I set up a composite of all the cameras I wanted to see from the roku, and put the url into the roku app.  https://www.rokuguide.com/channels/ip-camera-viewer-pro  is the one I use.  It is free if all you want is that one composite feed, which is all I want.  Not that $4.99 is much to spend, but I had no interest in anything more than the one composite.
 

upstatemike

Senior Member
I have some old Roku boxes that are about to fall out of support by Netflix. Maybe I could re-purpose them as dedicated camera viewers. I only need the composite view of my 6 main cameras and I have an old 42 inch plasma TV in my basement workshop to act as the monitor so this could be a good way to recycle stuff I already have around.
 

pete_c

Guru
Here utilize KODI for RTSP streaming favorites.  Doorbell Video cam is a favorite.   Looks better on a 65" screen than tiny Smartphone display. 
 
That said though do not not spend much time looking at camera feeds or recordings. 
 
KODI standard boxes here were AOpen boxes and recently switched to a mini TV box (8 core ARM) running CoreElect OS.  Pure Linux and pure Kodi.
 
For outside of LAN utilize IPSec VPN for everything on the home LAN.  IE: Homeseer, HA, OmniPro 2 panel....

Been reading much on the IPCamTalk forums. Lots of info there relating to CCTV and Blue Iris. Not much on Linux CCTV though.
 
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