Much is made of the importance of the video storage process by manufacturers of video-specific storage appliances and video NVRs. With the increasing prevalence of cameras with on-board SD storage for video, I feel there are questions that need to be asked about SD storage:
- Is SD storage reliable?
- Which SD cards are better and more reliable for video?
- What is the lifetime expectancy for the cards?
- What is the storage capacity of SD cards as megapixel cameras become the norm?
- Which VMSes can read and use the stored video on SD cards?
I would like to hear from users on their favorite IP cameras with storage and their various uses.
Sure, with the understanding that nothings perfect, and with the declining costs of MLC and SLC memory we'll soon see cameras with faster and more robust msata and cfast slots too, and certainly built-in mini pcie for 3g,4g radios, further reducing power consumption....
For the relatively minimal cost of storage, it's not a big deal these days to use edge storage in addition to standard VMS storage. We did this one one site where they'd had some old analog cameras vandalized, and then discovered the DVR hadn't been running for about two months (insert facepalm). When we replaced DVR, and replaced the cameras with 2MP models, we added SD cards as a "backup".
Of course, Murphy is a mother, and the next time someone decided to hit the site, they actually managed to steal the DVR, AND several cameras... and the ones they didn't get weren't recording to SD anyway (as it turned out, they had a know problem with internal recording that had been fixed in a subsequent firmware update... *sigh*).
Caveat Emptor - We tell our clients we sell and support "Restore Systems" that includes a "free" backup system - Spilling coffee is easy, putting it back in the cup is a tad harder.
I tried to make a case for using a camera with on-board storage in a parking lot where the operator arms were being vandalized as there was no infrastructure. Also, I wanted to install one temporarily in an elevator that was being vandalized. Both times our Campus Safety director shot it down because did not want his officers removing and re-inserting SD cards. He was pretty adamant about it, and there really was no one else to do it. I don't really know what was his issue with it: evidence tampering? Incompetence?
IPVMU Certified | 02/26/14 02:05pm
I agree with Matt Ion - As an end user I prefer to have an SD card in cameras that support it just to have a backup in the event the VMS and camera aren't playing nice. One thing I have found with our cameras (I'm not sure if it's the same for all cameras) is that it's a pain to view video as individual files that need to be accessed on an individual basis.
Chesapeake & Midlantic | 02/26/14 04:36pm
Update: a day after being introduced, Amazon has already reduced the price of a 128GB micro SD card to $120 (from an MSRP of $200, which is what Best Buy is selling at).
I personally do not recommend SD recording as a sole recording method of a video surveillance system at all. SD card fails, and its life expectancy is way too short compared to HDDs. By the time you add the cost of finding sd card failures and repalcing them in an adhoc manner, it just does not make sense for a system with more than a handful number of cameras. In most cases, it involes a ladder and opening the camera to replace a sd card. And if the ip camera does not automatically recognize/format/use the new sd card, you have to configure them one by one. If you have a good service/maintenance contract, it might be a different story.
I would say more weight on the "hassle"; plus there was some dismantling of the camera involved, so I think there was a confidence issue in designating officers to do that in order to extract and re-insert the SD card.
What I can tell you definitively John is that I'm seeing A LOT more interest in SOTE than I was even a year ago. Some of the use cases, okay ALL of the use-cases so far, have been pretty niche, but there is a common thread to them which is that SI's and End-Users are now aware that SOTE is more-or-less a commoditized feature on IP Cameras, and they want to begin utilizing it.
But that epiphany in our industry comes at a cost as well. What I mean is, most manufacturers who have SOTE on their hardware today did little more than lip service to it. Specifically, yes their cameras have storage slots that can hold SD, SDHC or even SDXC cards, and yes they have something in their interface which deals with managing and retrieving said storage, but the robustness on it today is severely lacking. That's a temporary problem that's fairly easy to fix by getting the manufacturer to update the camera FW with some basic disk health features that are common on other systems, but just be aware that while the hardware is ready and the market is awakening to it, there are lots of gremlins in the machines today.
From the pedestrian stand-alone SOTE (where it's just a camera recording and no video is stored anywhere else) to some of the deeper integrations I'm starting to see for restoring archives on network outage and pre-alarm buffering, SOTE promises some cool new functionality to deliver even more TCO benefits over analog. I'm glad this evolution is finally occurring because I've been an advocate of it for a long time.
I think most of the good brand IP cameras with edge recording do support remote playback feature. So you don't have to take out SD / Micro-SD card/s from the camera/s in order to playback the footage, as long as they are on the network, you can just playback using their supported means I.e. web-browser / remote client software / smartphone app. Correct?
Yes of course its a hassle when the cameras are not on the network I.e. in standalone installation.