The Avigilon Micro Dome Is 4 Years Old - Time For An Update?

Avigilon announced the HD Micro Dome in May 2013, and since then it has gotten a couple new mounting options, but no increases in resolution or other features. When we tested it in 2015, it performed poorly compared to alternatives.

Should Avigilon update the Micro Dome with more current features, or is the low-cost/fixed lens/small camera segment no longer a good spot for Avigilon, and not worth the R&D effort?

Well ISC is right around the corner so maybe we will have something new to see.

Definitely time to update.

Once you get locked into their ecosystem, what choice do you have?

What do you mean by "locked in"? ACC supports a good variety of cameras via ONVIF. In fact, this is part of the reason why I was wondering if Avigilon will do a Micro Dome update. It is kind of a niche product, and there are other small form factor cameras that would work with ACC (though you would lose some Avigilon-specific features like pixel search or automated firmware updates). It may be that they do not see the benefit of updating the Micro Dome given the addressable market and alternative options.

Pre sales, open architecture. Post sales, better use our cameras.

It comes down to ease of install and level of integration. Most of the systems we take over that have VMS solutions with 3rd party cameras, customers got tired of all the integration issues and finger pointing between manufacturers. Once they see how easy it is to install Avigilon cameras with ACC and how well they are integrated they don't want 3rd party cameras.

Have a look at the supported camera list.

First, note that I'm an Avigilon fan. I enjoy your posts and agree with you most of the time.

Second, I'm becoming increasingly frustrated at the lack of additions to this list. There are some fairly considerable gaps in Avigilon's camera lineup, and they aren't adding support for other manufacturers cameras that fill those gaps. In fact, I'm starting to feel like they are intentionally not filling those gaps, and that's frustrating.

Their R&D either needs to move more quickly and improve their lineup, or they need to start adding support for newer cameras.

Thanks for the kind words.

Where do you see the gap? What type or types of cameras is Avigilon missing?

1.) Their multi-sensor cameras are fairly pathetic relative to their competition. Both Axis and Arecont have substantially more flexible multi-sensor options. When I say "more flexible", I mean everything from the possible configurations of the individual sensors to the lens options they have (yes, I know Avigilon is varifocal, but that doesn't help me when the varifocal doesn't do what I need it to do). When you combine the fact that Axis/Arecont have better cameras with the fact that the Avigilon offering doesn't even include analytics, it makes no sense to use the Avigilon offering for any reason other than "because we know it works with ACC." I suppose if it perfectly fits the problem you're trying to solve, then that is good too, but if not, you're kind of stuck. If they would at least add analytics to the multisensor line, I could help to justify it, but as of now, it's not really defensible in the face of the other options.

2.) Their mounting options are bad/frustrating, and create issues when trying to solve specialty problems. I have an issue right now where only one camera in their lineup will solve the problem the customer has, but the mounting options are such that I am going to have manufacture something totally separate to get it to work.

3.) Their lack of a box camera with an interchangeable lens is frustrating. While I appreciate the wide varifocal on their version of the "box" camera, it doesn't cover every possibility, and stepping up to the PRO line is not always an option to get the right lens.

I love the product and sell a ton of it, but this is definitely the one thing that really frustrates me about them overall.

I am assuming you know about as I recommend you send this feedback to Avigilon using the proper channels.

I find the Arecont has the best aiming flexible out of Arecont, Axis, and Avigilon but with all the issues I have seen with Arecont it makes them a non-starter IMO. I was surprised how limited the Axis Multi-head is too as you can slide the images around the ring but you can tilt them up to the horizon or rotate the imagers like you can with Arecont. Plus Axis does not have remote zoom or focus which adds to the install time.

Avigilon's Multihead is on the old H3 platform and I agree analytics need to be added and based off them releasing Appearance Search I think it only makes sense that we would see a new version soon. As far as the aiming I agree the Avigilon multi-head is the most limited of the 3 though we haven't run into issues when deploying them as they have worked very well for hallway intersections and corner of building mounts.

Remote focus, analytics, and more aiming flexibility are at the top of my list for the H4 version.

I would like to talk with you offline about the mounting issues you are having as we haven't run into any with the H4 line though I wish the imagers could tilt up more when you are ceiling mounted and want to use 9-22 lens to look down a hallway though I know Avigilon isn't the only manufacturer with this issue.

Box camera wise what lens are you needing as the B1 version of the box camera has a 20x optical lens. Would you need a wider lens option?

I was aware of the email address, but I admit I have not sent anything there -- but, my RSMs and Sales Directors are well aware. :) Your point about "proper channels" is probably spot on though.

We have discussed the Arecont angle before, and while I know they have had issues in the past, we've had phenomenal luck with the G2 line. However, we haven't brought them in to ACC before, and I know that's where you saw the issues. My point with this is that I would want to see Avigilon actually support these cameras, assuming it would only take small changes to ACC for them to be fully-supported. They are supported in such a wide array of other platforms, I can't imagine they are so specialized that ACC can't handle them.

Amazing that your call-out regarding tilt on domes is one that I just shared with them the other day. It's bad enough on the standard H4 domes (~9-degrees), but on the IR versions, it's totally unusable with a 30-degree (!) tilt. That's not the issue I'm working on right now, but it's definitely an issue nonetheless.

The B1 version of the HD camera is very nice, and admittedly covers a huge range, which is something that nobody else has to my knowledge, so I have to give them props there. But, I'm actually looking for something with a longer lens -- more than in 100-150mm range, where they cap out at 84mm.

I will send you a message separately regarding the mounts -- feel free to respond when you're able.

To be clear about the Arecont issue their support blamed it on the Cisco switches not Avigilon. That being said it doesn't matter how well they integrate them with ACC it will never be as good Avigilon's own. To me, pixel search and classified object search are the keys and no other camera does motion detection as granular as Avigilon so that will always be missing unless other camera manufacturers change how they do motion detection.

Also on a side note do you know you can add analytics to the multi-head cameras and 3rd party cameras with the new Edge Storage unit? I am testing one now with 4 head Avigilon camera and the new H4 PTZ. Analytics work on all for heads while both cameras record on the Edge unit.

No need, use Hik + Avigilon, good combo