Spam, Twinkies and Arecont

Author: John Honovich, Published on Dec 20, 2012

Measuring ROI can be difficult but Arecont Vision is proposing a new simple metric to do so. Called 'Pixels Per Dollar', it precisely and quickly measure the cost effectiveness of pixels deployed. In this note, we examine whether this should be adopted.

Background

Megapixel manufacturer Arecont Vision has recently released a white paper and marketing campaign to promote this. They simply take a camera's total number of pixels and divide by its cost, so a 1MP camera that costs $400 would deliver 2500 pixels per dollar (1MP / $400).

Here is an excerpt of Arecont's pixel per dollar chart:

av pp$

The only missing column is the assumed price of each camera, which Arecont estimates at ~$200 for analog and ~$550 for 10MP. Those prices are obviously skewed but the general point remains - higher resolution cameras deliver more pixels per dollar.

In this chart Arecont estimates a 10MP camera delivers 12x the 'value' of an analog one, down from 32.7 times in their resolution benefits chart.

Value of Pixels Per Dollar?

This metric best works if pixels are all the same, simply that some cameras can deliver more of them.

Consider calories. You need calories to live and, if you want to save money, looking at calories per dollar is useful. However, if you take it to an extreme, you would probably have to live on spam and twinkies:

Get Video Surveillance News In Your Inbox
Get Video Surveillance News In Your Inbox

spam twinkies arecont

While the general trend of increased pixel 'productivity' is good, going to the extreme of pure pixels per dollar maximization introduces risks of its own.

Pixels Are Not All the Same

Unfortunately, pixels are not all the same and piling on as much pixels as possible can cause severe problems much like eating lots of calories can lead to diabetes, heart attacks and death.

As our resolution tutorial examines, pixels are only one element in imaging and often run against overall image quality - low light, WDR, etc. Indeed, a savvy purchaser might want to red flag any camera whose pixels per dollar was too high as it likely indicates other problems - like being the Spam or Twinkies of video surveillance.

2015 Update

Arecont is still using pixel per dollar, though now it shows why the company has lost its competitive positioning. See: Arecont Accurately Predicts Its Own Fall.

3 reports cite this report:

Arecont 10MP G5 Tested on May 31, 2016
For years, Arecont Vision had an advantage with their 10 megapixel cameras as few rivals offered more than 5MP. Indeed, they capitalized on it...
Arecont SituationalPlus+ Explained on Nov 11, 2015
Arecont claims to be 'redefining situational awareness' through their new SituationalPlus+ But what is it? And how does it compare to their...
Arecont Accurately Predicts Its Own Fall on Jul 24, 2015
You have to give credit where credit is due. Three years ago, Arecont introduced the idiotic Pixels Per Dollar metric. On the one hand, it is...
Comments : PRO Members only. Login. or Join.

Most Recent Industry Reports

Avigilon CEO Attacks Asian Companies Cyber Insecurity on Aug 18, 2017
Avigilon CEO is taking aim at their Asian competitors. And he is going directly after these company's cyber security issues. In this note, we...
Sony Next Gen HD Dome Camera Tested (SNC-EM642R) on Aug 18, 2017
Sony has released their latest generation, claiming improved WDR and low light, increased IR range, and more. We tested the SNC-EM642R outdoor IR...
IP Networking Course September 2017 on Aug 17, 2017
This is the only networking course designed specifically for video surveillance professionals plus it includes live training, personal help and...
Knightscope Raises $10 Million With $3,320 Average Per Investor on Aug 17, 2017
Congrats to Knightscope. And condolences to their legion of little investors. Knightscope has disclosed they have raised $10+ million from their...
Axis and Arecont Legal Conflict Over Multi-Imager Cameras on Aug 17, 2017
Arecont threatened Axis. Axis has responded by moving to invalidate an Arecont patent. It is an important contest. Multi-imagers are Arecont's...
Directory Of Consumer Security Cameras on Aug 16, 2017
The consumer camera segment continues to grow, with new startups and models from existing players released seemingly every month. In this report we...
Cat 5e vs Cat 6 vs Cat 6a Network Cable Usage Statistics on Aug 16, 2017
Cat 5e? Cat 6? Cat 6a? What do integrators use in practice, today? 140+ integrators told IPVM. Here are the results: For those who want to...
Hikvision Responds To Cracked Security Codes on Aug 15, 2017
Hikvision has responded to IPVM's report on Hikvision's security code being cracked, both with a 2 page update to dealers and communication...
Stolen Video NVR / DVR Statistics on Aug 15, 2017
"But what happens if someone steals my recorder?" Anyone who has done more than a handful of jobs has probably heard this question several times....
Hikvision Europe Cutting Out Unauthorized End User Sales on Aug 15, 2017
The days of anyone buying Hikvision from anywhere off the Internet are numbered, at least in Europe, if Hikvision's plan comes to fruition. In...

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