Which PTZ Autotracking Should I Use?


I need suggestions about autotracking dome. Autotracking should work, like in this scenario:

When no perimeter system alarm, dome just should do field scan.

After alarm comes from perimeter system (VMS send preset command to dome), dome should immediately start autotracking.

There no one perimeter zone for dome, one dome should handle about 6 -8 different perimeter zones.

I tried a Samsung SNP-6320RHP dome, but, it starts autotracking after about 3-4 sac, and target disappears from dome field of view. Set too wide field of view doesn’t helps, objects become too small for autotracking.

I also tried a Dahua dome (with autotracing activation after alarm input closing), but in this dome, autotracking sometimes work, sometimes no, with no apparent reason why.

My ideal dome should have integrated IR (minimum 150 meters), and 1080 resolution.
Does anybody has good experience with this setup?


The best PTZ tracking I have seen thus far that does what you are looking for, was the ioimage encoder tied into a Pelco Esprit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n8IF_x5QWJc

Or in this case a Pelco Spectra:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5PNvT6xWw_I

As you can tell by the quality of the image (or lack of..) this was done with analog PTZ's connected via RS485 to the ioimage TRK100 encoders.

It is my experience (and this may start a debate here..) that due to network latency, you can NOT get a good quality PTZ tracking by controlling a PTZ via TCP/IP from a server.

While at DVTEL I tried to productize a 3rd party 30X IP PTZ that included an analog output and RS485 controls which gave similar results to the video clips above at 1080P.

I suggest using the FLIR/DVTEL/IOI TRK encoder and integrating it with a similar product, if you want reliable PTZ tracking. Cynix PTZ was the product I used that had an analog out and RS485 controls.

As i understood, IOI encoder can track any PelcoD PTZ unit? I just should apply analog PAL signal to encoder for this functionality? Some 1080 resolution domes has this possibility, but, actually, PAL output from this cameras has some latency, and, can cause autotracking problems. Also, autotracking itself works good on my mentioned cameras, but, main problem, start autotracking as soon, as possible, after camera reaches the perimeter alarm activated preposition.


Correct. ioi encoder works with any PelcoD PTZ unit. you can apply either PAL or NTSC option to both encoder and PTZ.

The problem of reaching the zone too late is corrected by setting the zone presets wider. This way even if the PT is slow to reach the alarm zone, when it gets to that preset it is wide enough FOV to acquire the target.

In my experience, autotracking is useful only when the scene is simple. We wrote about such a use case here: A Successful PTZ Auto Tracking Case. The Axis Q60 series autotracking is what was used in that one.

The project you describe seems like more of a hybrid; you want a perimeter detection sensor to trip the camera to a specific area and autotracking takes over from there.

That's smart, but could still be a problem. In general, the biggest mass of pixel movement is what is tracked, and this could potentially be not the subject you're interested in, but a vehicle or headlight or some other movement in the scene.

I understand that autotracking would be nice if it were smart enough, but I'm not sure that any version will be reliable.

This is exactly what PureTech sells using a fixed camera for initial detection and then tracking in the software, not the camera. When the tracked object exceeds the FOV of the fixed camera, the analytic tracks from the video feed of the PTZ.

This is known solution, and works great, if fixed camera is thermal. I asking about fastest auotracking possibility.

I have some experience with it. There are three types commonly used.

1. Fixed camera recognizes the object and guides the camera.

This limits the functionality but makes it a pretty solid tracker and you can usually create areas that will have priority.

2. Fixed cameras recognizes the object and guides the camera until a "hand-off" is needed. This helps when the subject leaves the view of the fixed camera.

3. Completely autonomous tracking, usually started during a tour or upon an alarm input. This requires the camera to follow an object that is moving while the entire background is moving. It has several difficulties to overcome and is often over promised.

Where I have seen it fail:

Alarm sends camera to gate, purpose is to follow car in parking lot until it stops and then resume its home location. Car passes bushes that are blowing and the camera just sits there because the car is about the same color at night. This is why camera manufacturers added a feature to limit the time allowed to track.

Camera is sent to track a person and the reflection from rain, cloud shadows, sunlight blinding, freeway traffic in background, street traffic, sky....almost anything seems more interesting than the intended target.

However, it looks cool and sounds good.

Brian is correct. PTZ tracking is like a PTZ on HDHD, it has a short attention span and it tends to "jump" from one object to another. nevertheless in a sterile perimeter environment it can work relatively well.

The main problem still exists - lots of various manufacturers marketing presentations shows very good autotracking.

From my point of view, good autotracking on any conditions can be reached by external tracking triggering camera (better thermal).