Casino End User - Pelco Endura Review

As long as our Avigilon review is posted, I might as well follow up with more. Here is the second review, of Pelco Endura:


  • Relatively uncluttered desktop.
  • Easy to learn and operate.


  • Relatively poor “live” and “playback” picture quality
  • “Jerky” video in reverse play and on initial PTZ motion. System apparently can only play back I-frames.
  • Slow response to commands. Camera call-up, playback start (especially in salvos) etc. take relatively long compared to other systems.
  • No slow-motion playback.
  • No “Motion Search” functions
  • Bookmarks can only be set for individual camera.
  • Joystick control of PTZs not possible on both main screen and monitor wall without moving joystick back and forth between systems.
  • High latency (~300ms). This interferes with PTZ control.
  • No metadata in clips.
  • Save locations limited to default set in User Profile unless changed in Export Manager.
  • Saved clips apparently cannot be converted to other format(s) for editing or authoring to a Video DVD.
  • No direct Video DVD authoring.


The Pelco Endura system has a few positive features but many limitations. Although its GUI is simple and straightforward, some functions are difficult to understand. Many functions are slow to start when initiated, such as reverse playback; especially of salvos. Switching from “live” to “playback” is also very slow with the screen often displaying “Press the Joystick Button”.

Both “live” and “playback” picture quality were unacceptable on both the viewing screen and the monitor wall, which would require that we either retain our analog matrix for live monitoring or deploy many IP megapixel cameras to overcome the video quality deterioration from what we now experience. Reverse Playback is of I-frames only (confirmed), which causes “skipping” of frames and non-fluid motion. We've found that this is a shortcoming for many systems with h.264.

The digital zoom function works well and the “zone of interest” function could be useful but the overall poor picture quality negates any real benefits. Perhaps these functions would be more useable on megapixel cameras but we have no intention to replace most of our cameras with megapixel ones anytime in the near future.

The Endura system lacks a “motion search” or “pixel search” function. This is a severe weakness compared to most competing systems.

The Endura system has the second highest latency we have measured at approximately 300ms. This high latency affects our ability to control PTZ cameras, especially when trying to follow moving vehicles or other relatively fast motion.

Clip creation is another area where Endura is severely lacking. Start and end dates/times must be manually entered – potentially allowing mistakes during the process. The inability to “point” a clip to a selectable network drive means that clip creation will need to be a two-step process: create the clip in the folder specified in the user’s profile, and then copy it to its final destination. This is one of the most confounding clip-creation features we’ve seen on any NVR/VMS system. In addition, clips created in Pelco’s proprietary .pef format apparently cannot be converted to a standard format for editing and/or authoring to a Video DVD.


The Pelco Endura system is not ideal for Casino Surveillance operations. It has numerous severe limitations that would adversely affect user performance and potentially impede productivity.

It is not recommended to proceed with any additional testing or evaluation.

A follow-up Q&A with Pelco yielded the following:

· Is the GUI layout customizable? In other words, can functions we don’t want our users to access be greyed out or totally eliminated from the GUI? Using roles and permissions, you can remove access to functions that you do not want operators having. For example, users that don’t have setup access will not see an icon to get into Setup mode.

· Is there a way to get smooth reverse playback? It appears to only play I-frames in reverse play. All reverse playback is I-frame only.

· Is the response to inputs typical? It appears that some actions take quite long to accomplish, like initiating playback – especially reverse and very especially when cameras are “synched”. (No response)

· I believe you told me that the system can’t do motion searches. Is that correct? We can configure motion detection on the cameras and create an additional search bar that would only show motion, and pixel search is not an available function.

· Can the joystick control PTZs on the main screen or just on the monitor wall? The KBD5000 can control any part of the monitor wall when connected to a VCD5000. It also has the ability to control the screens plugged into the Windows-based workstation if it’s connected to it.

· Can the joystick calibration be changed? It appears that PTZs don’t start to move until the joystick is moved quite a bit and then only slight increases in control input produce increasingly faster “steps” of PTZ motion. There is a joystick calibration application that can be used to optimize PTZ performance.

· Clip creation is very confusing. It’s hard to explain but it appears that with some Endura methods, we can’t specify a name or save location while others don’t let us mark beginning and end dates/times – those have to be entered manually. Clip name and location are specified in each user’s profile. During clip creation, you can specify the start time and end time of each clip prior to beginning the export process.

· The same for metadata in clips. Sometimes you can and sometimes you can’t enter it and we believe there’s no way to search the metadata among numerous clips. The notes added to export video are not searchable.

· Can clips saved in .pef format be converted to another format and/or edited? The .pef format clips cannot be altered or converted in any way. This ensures integrity of the video data. If editable formats are required, Endura supports exporting in AVI format as well.

· Is the system capable of burning video DVDs (not data DVDs)? Video DVD creation is possible by exporting video in AVI format and using dedicated DVD authoring software.

· How are user rights managed and can Windows rights be “passed through”? Our newest version of System Manager, SM5200, incorporates full Windows Active Directory and LDAP functionality.

· Is a “video wall” served by a hardware or software decoder? Is what we see on the demo system what we would get on our site? Video walls are created using hardware decoders, and are easily mapped to your displays with the External Monitors section of the Workstation software.

· How Pelco uses AutoCAD maps is unclear. How are AutoCAD maps imported into Endura and what additional work must be done to make them useable? Endura Mapping’s Import background function will easily import your .DXF files, and give you the option of which layers you would like to incorporate.

· What, if any, POS systems can be integrated with Endura? Our primary integration for POS solutions is eConnect. They have products that integrate directly to Endura at the API level. Here is a link to their website for more information:

· How would Biometrica Visual Casino be integrated with Endura? We have an open API that is available for integration with many third party applications.

· Can ADT (Tyco Security) alarms be integrated with Endura? How, via direct integration or via external contact closures? Direct integration is available if ADT’s system can communicate over our API. Additionally, contact closures are another option.

· I believe you said Endura has no integrated Incident Report capability. True? There is no directly integrated Incident Reporting software, but we do have an open API that will allow integration from third parties that specialize in Incident Reporting. We have integrated in the past with iView Systems for this.