Benefits of Standards for Specifying IP Cameras

Author: John Honovich, Published on Sep 23, 2008

Specifications are valuable but often are done poorly, creating problems or biasing the bid.  Such challenges are magnified with digital and IP video where multiple codecs and multiple resolutions become commonplace.

Just like we can benefit from application standards for interoperability between IP cameras and video management system, we can benefit from performance and quality standards.  Today, Vlado Damjanovski, the author of the "CCTV Bible" contacted me about performance standards he has been preparing for Australia.

Download the 15 page Digital Video Performance Standards document.  It's a draft but it's extremely high quality, like all of Vlado's work.

These standards would be quite complimentary to the current efforts by PSIA, ONVIF, etc.  If you have feedback on these standards or other efforts that might be relevant, please share in the comments. At a later date, I plan to discuss and explain the specifics of Vlado's approach.

Promoting and agreeing on such performance/quality standards would help rectify two of the most common problems I see in specifications:

Cut and Paste Specification: It is common to see specifications that are simply cut and paste from the vendor A&E specifications with the vendor's name removed.  This can be bad for customers as it reduces competition and selection for other products that might fill the functional need.  Requiring the use of standards terms could provide more generalizable specifications that a broader range of vendors could meet, ensuring quality at the lowest cost.

Frankenstein Specification: I often see specifications that take features from many different products and create a specification for a camera that does not exist.  Often, these are specific, proprietary or marketing terms that different manufacturers may use.  A standard vocabulary and set of terms could help eliminate this confusion or problem.

Writing good specifications is becoming more challenging as the expansion into megapixel cameras has increased the technical factors to be considered.  While many good specifications are released today, with the market growing and new technologies, such standards may be more valuable than ever.

Related Reports on Standards

Deceptive ASIS Attendance on Oct 06, 2017
ASIS is being deceptive with its conference reporting, effectively inflating the event's real actual attendance. What they try, but struggle to...
IR Surveillance Guide on Jul 31, 2017
Infrared (IR) has become an increasing core component to video surveillance systems. In particular, the expansion of integrated IR cameras that...
Access Control AHJ Nightmares on Jun 01, 2017
For access control jobs, a single person can be the difference between finishing a job, costing thousands in extra dollars, and being profitable...
Technician Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Guide on May 12, 2017
Technicians encounter multiple hazards when running wires and installing security devices. Wearing personal protective equipment, or PPE, helps...
ONVIF Favorability Results on Jan 11, 2017
ONVIF has been one of the most debated aspects of the video surveillance industry. On the one hand, its aim to increase interoperability has been...
Introduction To Burglar Alarm Systems on Jan 04, 2017
While alarm systems are popular, balancing between the right level of protection, the appropriate components and an acceptable price can be very...
ONVIF Tutorial 2017 on Dec 19, 2016
ONVIF is well known within the surveillance industry as an interface to connect IP cameras and VMS systems but: Is ONVIF a 'Standard'? Why...
API / SDK Tutorial on Dec 18, 2016
While Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) are key to 'open' platforms, they are frequently misunderstood and over-hyped in physical security....
No One Should Ever Use Simplisafe on Dec 12, 2016
Simplisafe, the upstart DIY intrusion alarm system, is increasingly Public Enemy Number One in the alarm business. Recently, Security Sales ran an...
Free Online NFPA, IBC, and ADA Codes and Standards on Nov 29, 2016
Finding applicable codes for security work can be a costly task, with printed books and pdf downloads costing hundreds or thousands. However, a...

Most Recent Industry Reports

Hikvision Access Control Tested on Oct 19, 2017
Hikvision aggressive pricing and marketing combined with generally reliable hardware and free software has made them a major player in video...
Verkada, Silicon Valley VSaaS Startup, Targets Enterprise on Oct 19, 2017
Verkada says they are building an enterprise-class VSaaS offering, calling it "The new platform for video security". This is a departure from the...
Exacq Unbreaks Avigilon Integration on Oct 18, 2017
For nearly 4 years, Exacq had broken and effectively blocked use with Avigilon cameras, as IPVM reported in January 2014. Now, Exacq has...
Search More Important Than Live Monitoring - Statistics on Oct 18, 2017
Search is overall more important than live monitoring to integrators, according to new IPVM statistics.  The key themes found in integrator...
Axis 'Sold Out' P3707-PVE Multi-Imager Tested on Oct 18, 2017
Axis faced significant product shortages over the summer. Perhaps the most notorious and significantly sold out model was the Axis P3707-PE 8MP...
Dahua Removes Auto Rebooting on Oct 17, 2017
For years, Dahua has automatically programmed its IP cameras to reboot weekly, a highly atypical and questionable practice. Following IPVM...
Deep Learning Tutorial For Video Surveillance on Oct 17, 2017
Deep learning is a growing buzzword within physical security and video surveillance. But what is 'deep learning'? In this tutorial, we explain...
Multipoint Lock Access Control Tutorial on Oct 17, 2017
Doors are notoriously weak at stopping entry, and money can be misspent on wrong locks that leave doors quite vulnerable. While closed and locked...
Buy From B&H, Ship Direct From ADI on Oct 16, 2017
B&H, one of the largest online sellers of video surveillance equipment to end users, regularly purchases their video surveillance equipment...
Competing Against Siemens on Oct 16, 2017
Siemens entered the integration business with 15,000+ customers, through their acquisition of Security Technologies Group in 2001. Since that time,...

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