Amos, sorry for the delay. This got lost during the ASIS show stuff last week.
What you need is license plate capture (LPC). I am not trying to be pedantic. It's important because when most industry people say LPR, they mean/imply automatic. What you want fortunately is easier.
A lot of people try doing this with a tweaked general HD camera - see our test results on license plate capturing.
That said, if you really want something to do work and do not want to fool around tinkering with the camera, there are some purpose built license plate capture cameras, though not many HD IP ones. We'll put together a short list and add here.
Do you need to record in Milestone or was that just a suggestion?
We have had success using Mobotix m12 w/ long pass filter which would work with milestone and the 3/5 mp ir bullet from Avigilon that has the adaptive ir that I would suggest with Avigilon acc not milestone (but I haven't tested them with milestone) if he has an option - pairing the Mobotix with raytec illuminators also is suggested - anyone can do license plates during the day it's the nightshots that will really limit the options
Bosch rep - To set realistic expectations for LPR and LPC you can use this online link to see what you get. This helps to set reasonable expectations for speed, resolution, and, most importantly, horizontal FOV and range to target. A common mistake we see is attempting to view more than one lane width at a time or trying to capture cars turning rather than coming straight at the capture device. Best of luck, sounds like you have an ideal customer that appreciates performance over low cost.
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I sold and installed (2) avigilon 5mp JPEG 2000 cameras with a POE IR illuminator to use for license plate capture.
Yes this was on Avigilon but it worked. Read below for some further details.
I included some images below of my install and testing.
John's recommendation of the Adaptive IR Avigilon bullet camera are good cameras as well.
I also saw a demo of an arecont camera with a similar setup modifying the internal settings within the camera and IR illumintors to get the plate numbers to pop looking into head lights. You could reach out to Arecont as well ,as they have a white paper on the setting calibration needed to capure plates when looking at head lights at night.
I do have to say the JPEG2000 camera did an awesome job on my project and the customer was PUMPED that it worked so well.
I do not see Avigilon Cameras in the Milestone dropdown menu of approved cameras, however if you can get the IR bullet camera from aviglion (i got one to work in exacq via the ONVIF driver), you can do all the configuration in the camera with the Gain and exposure settings, you may be able to re-prodcue the same results.
hope that some what helps...
I've bumped into a $250 Chinese LPR camera that looks promising ... based solely on specs. Has anyone tried it? Here's the reference to it.
The camera seems to block out the headlights.
Thanks for all the post's! Very imformative.
There are several sites that I am looking to do this on and they all have Milestone VMS already so I do want to get a compatible camera.
I think what I will do is get the Geovision and give it a try, the Bosch doesn't quite have the specs that I would like to see for two lanes. The client had approved a budget for a customized ALPR camera for ~$8,000 so the $862.99 price tag to test will not scare them one bit. I really like the idea of not having to fiddle with all the gain and exposure settings in the camera. I guess if it doesn't work I will fall back to an Avigilon camera.Still be a lot cheaper than some the custom camera. Too bad the Avigilon LPR camera isn't ONVIF or otherwise compatible with other VMS's.
As far as the China model goe's I would need two of them to cover the whole road. The client really doesn't want to have two cameras staring at the vehicles coming in, even if it is alot cheaper.
Mobotix M12 or M15 with the long pass filter and IR Illuminators. Record on the camera with 64 GB and never have to replace the camera. I have the original M10's working in the Everglades for 10 years and still working. The price of these seem to put people off but considering they will last 2, 3 or more times longer than other cameras make them a bargain.
IR is not built in with Mobotix you have to pair with Raytec or some other illuminator. Mike my problem with that Mobotix setup is pulling that video off the 64Gb sd card, its painfully slow to say the least.
We do a lot of LPR over here at ipConfigure, and we use the AXIS Q1604 and Samsung 6004. There is an IR illuminator for some good night time shots. They are about 65 feet away using a Fujinon 80mm lens. I believe both are supported in Milestone.
Night with torrential downpour:
Here is a Samsung 6004 in the same location. It gives you a much wider shot.
Try 3MP Avigilon bullet. It will provide same results what we see above with 5MP Avigilon Jpeg camera.
We did a project earlier this year for an apartment complex that needed LPR only, not ANPR. Like you, we didn't have much experience with LPR, so we did quite a bit of experimenting with various cameras and lighting. Our customer, unlike yours, was very frugal and needed to keep the project costs down. We were forced to MacGyver a solution vs. buying a $2000 camera per lane and call it a day. This particular customer has one inbound lane and one outbound lane, each a single cars width and they are separated by a small patch of landscaping.
What we found to be the best solution for this client has worked well to date, under all conditions. Here is a list of the hardware used:
1) Dahua / EyeSurv IPC-HDBW3300 3MP IR Dome camera
2) RayTec RAYLUX 50 HP PoE White LED Illuminator
We set the Dahua camera settings as follows:
Shutter: 10ms max (0~10ms range)
Gain: 1 (out of 0-100 scale)
Day & Night: Color (Forced Color mode all the time for the ability to tell which state the plate was issued from. Sometimes, it is hard to tell from the small logos or text, so color context helps greatly.)
Here is a sample pic of the research. This vehicle was traveling 45MPH in this scene.
I did post Avigilon 3MP screenshots in IPVM discussion of "Testing Avigilon Integrated IR"
I understand any branded MP Cams would provide LPs during day and some of them during night but Avigilon Bullet(3MP) is low Cost, easy to setup solution, does not require external IR and even providing license plates against full headlights.
Hungarian ANPR software producer ARH has camera for LPR ParkIt, WVGA, built in synchronised IR, remote zoom and focus.
Here is the sample, distance to plate about 7m, plate is greasy, total darkness, all car lights are on.
I think everyone has gotten off track, Amos wanted a solution to cover 2 lanes with one camera. Most everybody submitted cameras and photos of one lane/one car. The Avigilon seems to be the only picture that can capture two lanes. The mobotix solution can also capture two lanes. Why does everyone submit solutions that the original requester did not specify?
If the client has the budget, you may want to consider Inex-Zamir.
In the past, I have an analog camera with an infared illuminator. This has worked extremely well. I now use an Arecont 5 MP camera that is postion on a garage ceiling that works great. Night time may be a problem as the headlight wash out the front tag, but positon the cameras so you get both front and back plates.