Wireless For HD Analog Cameras?

A member asked about using wireless with HD analog cameras:

If I have an HD Analog camera on a pole in a parking lot and no other way to get it back to the analog DVR other than wireless (trenching is not an option)- what do I use? Everything I search pulls me back to IP over Coax and that's not what I'm trying to do. The WiFi we use, Comnet has an encoder that would work but I need a pair for each camera at a cost of about $2k so that's just not going to be feasible budget wise. If we can send IP over Coax I would think someone had figured out how to send analog over WiFi without a small fortune investment no? I realize switching to IP cameras is an option and we did give them an IP option but this is a cost sensitive project for a non-profit and I wanted to give them a lower end option. If I change everything to AHD I save about $10k but then have the problem of transmitting the 8 outdoor cameras (2 per pole) via WiFi.

Good question.

General answer:

Analog has always been a pain to use with wireless. There used to be a number of SD analog video wireless transmitter / receiver kits (e.g., Trango) but they were expensive, video loss was common, etc.

I do not know of any purpose built HD analog wireless links / kits.

Specific answer:

If your HD analog DVR supports IP inputs (many do), just use 1 IP cameras and something like Ubiquiti (~$200 for the wireless link). You can stream the IP camera directly into the HD analog DVR.

However, assuming your DVR does not support any IP feeds, consider this:

  • Still use an IP camera (any low cost $100 / $200 outdoor one if trying to save money).
  • Still use a Ubiquiti or other low cost IP link.
  • Add in a IP decoder at the DVR side, converting the IP stream to NTSC and then connect into your DVR. I am not sure who makes the cheapest decoder these days but worse case, it is sub $500, which will still be much cheaper than the $2k you are looking at right now.

These guys claim to do it:

Qara CVI is an innovative system for wireless video transmission in HDCVI standard up to 2 km in the free 5.8 GHz band.

The system consists of Qara CVI transmitters (single and dual input) and universal receiver EVIF Multi cooperating with other standards of analog HD technology. It enables transmission of images from CVI cameras to hybrid recorders (CVI, AHD and TVI) as well as recorders with network protocol ONVIF 2.0.

Qara CVI is a solution for easy replacement of analog monitoring in PAL resolution with a new, much better image quality (HD).

Supported resolutions:

• 720p (1280x720)

• 1080p (1920x1080) Full HD.

No idea on how much it costs, or how well or if it even works, but they seem to have a few other products that look real, so worth an inquiry.

Thanks John & Undisclosed 1 - appreciate the input and am glad to hear I'm not that far off track. I'll check out the Qara.

I don't know pricing on the Qara, either, but for reference, analog wireless was historically much more expensive than what you'll get a pair of radios like Ubiquiti for. SD analog transmitter/receiver sets were often over $1,000 each and I would honestly not expect HD analog to be far cheaper, but who knows, it's possible.

This was actually one of the first reasons we started using IP cameras when I was an integrator, because remote cameras, whether wired or wireless, were much easier to install via Ethernet than trying to convert analog and send it back.

Also side note, the Qara unit looks like a CVI encoder on the transmitter side, which sends signal back wirelessly to the receiver which outputs ONVIF. Neat application, but you'll still need IP capability on the recorder.

Here's the only pricing* I could find without becoming a dealer:

First the tri-input transmitter (2 CVI, one IP) ~$500

Then the quad reciever: ~$150

So if you had four CVI cameras and were able to use both Analog HD inputs on each of two transmitters, the cost per channel would be around ~$300.

As for the IP output, it appears that is in addition to the analog HD outputs, based on this:

Checking to see if its only legal in Europe.

*Double check my zlotnys to dollars and cost per channel calculation/assumptions.

It lists video outputs as "2x RJ45", no analog outputs.

Yes, you are right. Works with hybrid or IP NVR's.

Wonder where the encoding is happening, in the transmitter or reciever. Probably the transmitter.

What would be your cost be to replace the current HD DVR with a hybrid unit which supports IP?

New DVR/NVR plus a UBNT PTP link and IP camera could be your best option and cost less than the wireless option above.

Not an endorsement, but since I came across it, there is an AHD 1.3MP (only) wireless kit from AV-Link.

I also found a company called Ionodes http://www.ionodes.com/ that has lower cost encoders but still about 1200 a set per camera so I think I'm going to stay with IP at the poles, change the DVR out to a Hybrid and use the HD Analog inside.

All the responses have been very helpful - thanks so much!

As Michael said above, get a tribrid DVR instead of just an AHD only DVR. The new Dahua 3.0 recorders will support just about any camera; ONVIF IP, SD Analog, and all three HD Analog, HD-CVI, HD-TVI, AHD. They don't support HD-SDI, but I don't know of many hybrids that do.

With the tribrid, you can then use IP cams at the poles via UBNT wireless backhaul, and AHD everywhere else.

The other option is to place a small DVR at each pole. But, enclosure size is going to get rather large.

I am bumping this since a member just asked the same question. I have not seen any new HD analog wireless systems be replaced but I might have missed it. Anything new?

Maybe I should turn this around. Are there any IP cameras specifically designed for LPR??

Thanks again John

Are there any IP cameras specifically designed for LPR??

Do you mean license plate capture (LPC) or LPR (meaning on-board software included)?

There are plenty of both, a few that we have tested include:

Testing Messoa 3MP LPC Camera, Testing Geovision MP License Plate Camera and Genetec AutoVu LPR Camera Tested

Just LPC. I hope to pair it with PlateSmart for recognition.

Thanks John, I appreciate it.


No endorsement either, I am looking for this as well and this is what I found.

And unfortunately for my project, I need CVI for Illustra line of HD Analogs.