Axis Open VMS ACS5 Tested

Author: Ethan Ace, Published on Mar 14, 2016

Axis has launched an open VMS, with its new ACS5. What has historically been an Axis only offering is now suddenly a potential competitor to the many open VMSes in the market, including its corporate sibling Milestone.

But how well does it work? We downloaded ACS5 and the free trial license to try it out.

Here is a quick peek showing 4 manufacturers running inside ACS5:

Inside, we examine the 3 key strengths and 5 key weaknesses of ACS5.

**** *** ******** ** **** ***, **** *** *** ****. **** *** ************ **** ** Axis **** ******** ** *** ******** * ********* ********** ** the **** **** ***** ** *** ******, ********* *** ********* sibling *********.

*** *** **** **** ** ****? ************ **** *** *** **** ***** ********* *** ** ***.

**** ** * ***** **** ******* * ************* ******* ****** ****:

******, ** ******* *** * *** ********* *** * *** weaknesses ** ****.

[***************]

Key ********

*** *** ********* ********:

  • ***** ***** ****** *********** *** ***** ** *** ***** *** the ****** ************* ****, ****** **** **** ***************, ******.
  • ********** ** **** ******* *** ****** *** ****, ******** ******** control *** ***********
  • ****** ******* **********, ******** ** ****, *** ****** *** ******.

*** *** ********** ********:

  • ** *** ******* *** ***** ***** *******, ********** ********* ****. Axis **** ****** ***** ***** *** ******* ** * **** priority *** **** *******.
  • *** *** ********* ******* ***** ****, *** ** *** ***** and ******* ** **** **** ******** *****.
  • ********** **** / ****** ********** ** *********. ****** **** ******** monitoring ***** **** ******** *******, ******** **** ** ***********.
  • ********* ******* ** *********. ****** ******** ******* *** ** ******** simultaneously, ********* **** ****** ** ****** **** *************.
  • ** ***** ****** ******. ***** **** ***** ** *** ******* this, ****' ********* ********* **** *** **** **** ****. **** **** ****** **** ** * **** ******** *** 2016 *******.

Pricing **** ** ***** *****

*** *** *** * ***** ** *********. ***** ** ********* from *** **** ******** **** *** (****) ******:

  • **** ******** *** *** **** ******* *** **** ** ** 32 *******. **** ** $** *** *** ******.
  • ********* ******** *** *** *** *** **** ****** *** *** any ******* **** ** *******. **** ** $*** *** *** device.
  • ****** ***** ** ***** ** ***** ******* ** * ******, i.e., ** *** **** *** **** ******* ****** ** ******* connected ** * ****** ******, **** ***** ******* ** **** and *** ****** ****** ********* ********.
  • ** ********* / ****** / *********** ****, ** ******, *** future ******** (****, ***.) *** ******* ** ******* ***.

Competitive ******

***** ***, **** ** *** ***** *** *******, **** **** primarily ** *** ***** *** **** *** **** *** **** need ** *** ** * *** *** ***** *******. *******, once **** **** **** *** ***** ****** ******, ** ******* that **** **** ** * ********, *** ************ **********, ** open ***** **** ***** *** *********.

Solid ***** ***** ****** ***** ***********

*** ***** ***** ******* ********* (* ****** **** * *************) worked ******* ****** ** *** *, **** ************* ** ********* and ********** *********** ********, *** ***** ************ ********. 

No ***** ***** ***

*** * **** *** ******* ***** ****** ********* ** ***** party *******. ****** **** *** ** ********* ** **** ******* only.

**** ***** **** ***-**** ****** *** ******* ** ********** ********* only, * *********** **********, ** **** ***** ******* **** **** of ****** ********* (****** ** ****** ****) *** ****/**** ***** party *******. 

Device Compatibility Tool ******

**** ****** ************* **** ****** ************* **** ****. ***** ***** *** ******'* ** ******* and ***********, *** ***** ************* ***** *** ***, *********** ********** of *.*** *** ***** *********, *****, *** ***** ************* (***/**********). Axis ********* **** ******* **** ** ***** ******* * **********, but *** ****** ** ***, *** **** *** *** *** full ******* * **** *** ***** ***** ************, ****** **** basic ****** *** *********.

************ *******

******* ********, *****, ****/*****, *********, *** ****, ******* **** ************, with **** ******* ******* *** **** *******, *** ******* ******** upon ******, ******* ******** *** ***** ********.

*** *******, ** ****** *** ******** *.**-**-**, ***** ***** ****** all *****, ***** ** **********. *******, ******* *** **** * second ****, *** ****** ****** ***** *****. ******* * ***** time, ** ****** **** *****.

***** *** *** **** ****** *******, * ********** ***** ******* given *** ****** ** ***** *********/*********. **** * ****** ******, the ********* **-*********-* ****** ***** ********* ***** (*****). *******, **** camera ****** **** ** *** **** *****.

Strong **** ****** **********

*** ****** ****** ********** *** *** ** *** **** *******, with *** **** ****** ********** ********* ********** ******** **** *** client. **** ****** ***** ** ******* ********, ******* **** ************, and ********* ******* ** **** ******** **** *** ******. ***** functions *** *** ********* ** ***** ***** *******. **** **** configuration **** *** **** *********** ***********, ******* ** ****** ********, which *** ** ********* *** ****** *****.

******* ** *** ********** *********, ***** ************* ******* *** *********, such ** **********, ********, ***, ***., ** ******** ** ***/**********/*********** available *** *** *******.

** ****** ***** ******** ** **** *****:

Improved ****** ********* **********

*** * **** * ********* ****** ******* ***** ***** *** manage ***** *******' ********, *** ******, *** *** ********** ****** channels ******* ******* ** ***** *** **** ** ****** *** server ********. ******** *** ********* *** ************* ****** ** *** server *** *** ********. *** ***** ******* ******** ******, ***** may ******** * ******* **** ***** *** ** ******** ** the ******.

** **** **** ****** ** *** ***** *****:


New ********* ** ****** ******* ** ***********

****' *** ********* ******* ****** ***** ** ****** ***** *** drag ******* ******** *****, ******* ** ********* **** ** **** back/forward ** ******* ****** ** ***** ** ******** ****** ** the ********. **** ** *** ** ***, *** ****** ** most ***** *****.

Export ******* *********

*** * ******* ***** ** **** .*** ****** ****, ******* a *********** ******. ******** ******* *** ** ******** ** *** time, *** ******* * ***********/*****-****** ******. * ******** ** ******* containing *** ***** ********, *** **** *** ****** **** ************, not **************.

Enterprise **** / ****** ********** *********

******** *** * ********* *** ** ****** *** ********** **** one ****** ********, *** **** ******** *** *** ****** *********. In ***** ** *** ** ******** *******, ***** ****** * configuration **** **** * ********** ******, *** ****** ** ** the ****. ******** ** *** ****** ****** *** **** ***** saved ** * ******* ********.

No ***** *********

****** *** ***** ********** ***** ** *********** **** ****** ********* *******, *** * ******** ****** **** ********** ** ******** *******, either *** ****** ** ****** *** (*** **** *** *). ***** must ******** ***** *** ** ******* ** **** **** ** each ****** **** **** ** ******* **. ** ********,**** ****** ********* ******* *** ***** ** * ****'* **** *******, ******** **** to *** ** ******** ******* ****** *****.

Server ****/*** *****

*** ***** ** *** **** ****** ******* ******* ****** *** low, ~*-*% ** ** ** *.* ***, **** *** ** and * ***** ******* ** ***. **** ***** ******** ****** consistent ********** ** *******/********** ** ***.

**** ****** ******** ******** ******** ** *** *, *** ** our *****, ** *** ** ********** **** *** ******** ** or ***. ** **** ******* *** ** **** *** *******.

Comments (12)

Why even bother releasing without third party VMD now? Either wait until VMD works, or release as is but make the announcement at ISC West. If they would have waited, it probably would have been the big announcement at ISC.

"Why even bother releasing without third party VMD now?"

Getting ONVIF based VMD to work consistently is a minefield (see ONVIF test results) so that could have been a factor.

No, I get that, I'm asking why they didn't wait to launch or announce it as ISC, in just a few weeks.

IMO, if you're going to wait for ISC West to drop a product announcement it should be HUGE.

This is really incremental to something Axis has had for a while. It's noteworthy, but it's not enough to drown out the rest of the noise at ISC West. As Itamar noted, the price itself isn't really fantastic for the feature set you get.

Many people go to ISC West with a game plan of what they want to see. As a manufacturer you're better off (IMO) getting releases like this out earlier. Give people time to digest it, give people time to think about it relative to other options, and then at the show you can have a more in-depth conversation with an informed person.

For Axis, an ISC West level announcement would be them doing a 32MP camera to rival Avigilon's 30MP. You know Avigilon is going to have a lot of their messaging at ISC West revolving around the 7K camera, so Axis could throw their competitor off their game by making an announcement like that AT the show.

For Axis, an ISC West level announcement would be them doing a 32MP camera

That would ship 32M later...

I'm not sure what the strategy is. It feels like with 80$ per device is too expensive for what you get.

I'm guessing that things will improve over time but the price is too close to milestone essential license.

I understand that both MS and AX want to keep the appearance of an independent companies but I think the better strategy is keep being open but base your products on milestone at this stage.

"It feels like with 80$ per device is too expensive for what you get."

My guess is that the price is a 'feature', not a 'bug'. In other words, Axis may have set that price to limit the competitive threat of ACS to third parties. Imagine if they gave away ACS for Axis cameras? That would be highly disruptive to their partner relationships.

Imagine if they gave away ACS for Axis cameras?

Imagine if Milestone gave away a camera with every license. :)

Ask the customer what features they feel are most needed that they are willing to pay for. Then compare those comments with one of the no license fee manufacturers. I bet most do not give a hoot about half the stuff and if they knew they could RECORD, PUSH to the CLOUD, and VIEW LIVE for free they would do it for FREE.

Was there an example video of the user basics I might have missed? Here is how what the start interface looks like... Here is how to bring up and change cameras... Here is how to change or choose your layout... Here is how to playback/rewind/jump to previous date and time in video ... Here is how to get to the Event List (if any)...

As for the software, it seems very behind established players in similar price ranges like DW Spectrum/NXWitness, Exacq Start and Pro, MS Essential (alreayd mentioned), etc. I guess their long term play is for people who want all Axis at the small to mid level installations...?

What specifically makes you think it is 'very behind established players in similar price ranges'?

We did not record basic videos as we focused on what's new as the basics remain the same from previous versions of ACS.

I think the lack of camera side motion detection, the lack of multiview export, and the other players just seem to have more established 3rd party camera support. I'm not saying they can't catch up quickly if they want to. But my jaded view is while many manufacturers say they'll do this or that soon, it usually takes a long time.

Login to read this IPVM report.
Why do I need to log in?
IPVM conducts unique testing and research funded by member's payments enabling us to offer the most independent, accurate and in-depth information.

Related Reports

Alexa Guard Expands Amazon's Security Offerings, Boosts ADT's Stock on Sep 21, 2018
Amazon is expanding their security offerings yet again, this time with Alexa Guard that delivers security audio analytics and a virtual "Fake...
Favorite Intercom Manufacturers 2018 on Sep 14, 2018
Intercoms are certainly increasing in popularity, driven by the integration of video and IP networking. But who is the favorite? On the one side,...
October 2018 Camera Course on Sep 13, 2018
Today is the last day to save $50 on the October 2018 Camera Course, register now. This is the only independent surveillance camera course,...
VMS Export Shootout - Avigilon, Dahua, Exacq, Genetec, Hikvision, Milestone on Sep 13, 2018
When crimes, accidents or problems occur, exporting video from one's video surveillance system is critical to proving incidents. But who does it...
Dahua Low-Cost 4MP Camera Tested (N44CL52) on Sep 10, 2018
4MP use continues to increase, especially in low-cost models, according to integrators in our 2018 Resolution Usage Statistics. We bought Dahua's...
Directory Of 110+ Video Management Software (VMS) Suppliers on Aug 30, 2018
This directory provides a list of Video Management Software providers to help you see and research what options are available. Listing...
Inputs/Outputs For Video Surveillance Guide on Aug 24, 2018
While many cameras have Input/Output (I/O) ports, few are actually used and most designers do not even consider them. However, a good understanding...
Luxriot VMS Profile on Aug 23, 2018
Luxriot is more popular than Hikvision and Milestone products according to ASMAG which was probably even surprising to Luxriot. The company has...
Synology Surveillance Station VMS Tested on Aug 22, 2018
With so many low-cost NVRs and enterprise VMSes, is there any place in the market for NAS-based VMSes? Recently, IPVM bought a Synology NAS for...
SNMP / Network Monitoring For Surveillance 2018 on Aug 21, 2018
Surveillance systems typically rely on the the VMS to report issues, but this most often just means knowing a camera is "down" with no warning or...

Most Recent Industry Reports

Alexa Guard Expands Amazon's Security Offerings, Boosts ADT's Stock on Sep 21, 2018
Amazon is expanding their security offerings yet again, this time with Alexa Guard that delivers security audio analytics and a virtual "Fake...
UTC, Owner of Lenel, Acquires S2 on Sep 20, 2018
UTC now owns two of the biggest access control providers, one of integrator's most hated access control platforms, Lenel, and one of their...
BluePoint Aims To Bring Life-Safety Mind-Set To Police Pull Stations on Sep 20, 2018
Fire alarm pull stations are commonplace but police ones are not. A self-funded startup, BluePoint Alert Solutions is aiming to make police pull...
SIA Plays Dumb On OEMs And Hikua Ban on Sep 20, 2018
OEMs widely pretend to be 'manufacturers', deceiving their customers and putting them at risk for cybersecurity attacks and, soon, violation of US...
Axis Vs. Hikvision IR PTZ Shootout on Sep 20, 2018
Hikvision has their high-end dual-sensor DarkfighterX. Axis has their high-end concealed IR Q6125-LE. Which is better? We bought both and tested...
Avigilon Announces AI-Powered H5 Camera Development on Sep 19, 2018
Avigilon will be showcasing "next-generation AI" at next week's ASIS GSX. In an atypical move, the company is not actually releasing these...
Favorite Request-to-Exit (RTE) Manufacturers 2018 on Sep 19, 2018
Request To Exit devices like motion sensors and lock releasing push-buttons are a part of almost every access install, but who makes the equipment...
25% China Tariffs Finalized For 2019, 10% Start Now, Includes Select Video Surveillance on Sep 18, 2018
A surprise move: In July, when the most recent tariff round was first announced, the tariffs were only scheduled for 10%. However, now, the US...
Central Stations Face Off Against NFPA On Fire Monitoring on Sep 18, 2018
Central stations are facing off against the NFPA over what they call anti-competitive language in NFPA 72, the standard that covers fire alarms....
Hikvision USA Starts Layoffs on Sep 18, 2018
Hikvision USA has started layoffs, just weeks after the US government ban was passed into law. Inside this note, we examine: The important...

The world's leading video surveillance information source, IPVM provides the best reporting, testing and training for 10,000+ members globally. Dedicated to independent and objective information, we uniquely refuse any and all advertisements, sponsorship and consulting from manufacturers.

About | FAQ | Contact