Camera Application Selection Guide 2017

Author: Ethan Ace, Published on Aug 23, 2017

Entrances, hallways, rooms and parking lots are perhaps the 4 most common areas where surveillance is deployed. But what is the best type of camera for each? What resolution, form factors and FoV are best? Where do special features like WDR, integrated IR, super low light fit? Where is the best place to position the cameras?

In this report, we share test findings and recommendations showing tradeoffs of different camera options in each of these 4 fundamental spots - entrance, hallways, rooms and parking lots.

Below is an image of the FOVs used in our four different scenes.

Advances For 2017

Since our original writing of this guide in 2013, several changes have occurred in the industry, changing our recommendations:

  • 4MP/4K replaced 5MP/10MP: In the past 1-2 years, 5MP and 10MP cameras have become much less common, with 4MP and 4K sensors moving into even low cost cameras. (Note that new generation 5MP models are now becoming available, but we have not yet tested them.)
  • Integrated IR is everywhere: Integrated IR used to be a rare feature, but is now available in practically every manufacturer line, in low end and high end cameras and multiple form factors, with a majority of integrators installing integrated IR models.
  • True WDR is no longer a premium feature: True multi-exposure WDR is now found in even low cost models, under $200. This feature used to be limited to high end models, a significant premium over most cameras. See our WDR Shootout: Low Cost/High End for more details.
  • Fisheye image quality improved: Fisheye panoramic models now often use 4K/12MP sensors, with streaming resolutions of 9MP or higher, providing much better details than previous 3 and 5MP models common a few years ago. Additionally, integrated IR panoramic models improve fisheye low light performance, previously a key drawback.

*********, ********, ***** *** ******* **** *** ******* *** * most ****** ***** ***** ************ ** ********. *** **** ** the **** **** ** ****** *** ****? **** **********, **** factors *** *** *** ****? ***** ** ******* ******** **** WDR, ********** **, ***** *** ***** ***? ***** ** *** best ***** ** ******** *** *******?

** **** ******, ** ***** **** ******** *** *************** ******* tradeoffs ** ********* ****** ******* ** **** ** ***** * fundamental ***** - ********, ********, ***** *** ******* ****.

***** ** ** ***** ** *** **** **** ** *** four ********* ******.

Advances *** ****

***** *********** ******* ** **** ***** ** ****, ******* ******* **** ******** ** *** ********, ******** *** recommendations:

  • ***/** ******** ***/****:** *** **** *-* *****, *** *** **** ******* **** become **** **** ******, **** *** *** ** ******* ****** into **** *** **** *******. (**** **** *** ********** *** models *** *** ******** *********, *** ** **** *** *** tested ****.)
  • ********** ** ** **********:********** ** **** ** ** * **** *******, *** ** now ********* ** *********** ***** ************ ****, ** *** *** and **** *** ******* *** ******** **** *******, **** ********* ** *********** ********** ********** ** ******.
  • **** *** ** ** ****** * ******* *******:**** *****-******** *** ** *** ***** ** **** *** **** models, ***** $***. **** ******* **** ** ** ******* ** high *** ******, * *********** ******* **** **** *******. *** our*** ********: *** ****/**** *** *** **** *******.
  • ******* ***** ******* ********:******* ********* ****** *** ***** *** **/**** *******, **** ********* resolutions ** *** ** ******, ********* **** ****** ******* **** previous * *** *** ****** ****** * *** ***** ***. Additionally, ********** ** ********* ****** ******* ******* *** ***** ***********, previously * *** ********.

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

Key ********

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********

  • ** ********, **** *:* *** **:* *********** ***** **** ** the *** ** ***** **** *****, ****** *:* **** *** scene ********** ****** *** ** *** ****** ***********.
  • ******** ******* ** ******* *** ***** *:** ******** **** ******** greatly ******* *** ***** ****** ** ******** ***** *** ******** coverage ** **** ** *** ****.
  • ********** *** ** ******** **** ******** ***** ** **** **** beneath *** ****** ***** *** **** ** **** ********* ** subjects. *******, **** ******** ******* ** * **** ** *** in *** ******* ******, *********** ** *********** **********.

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

  • ** ***** ******** *****, ** ******* ******** * ******* ******** in ******* **** ***** ****** ** **** *** *****, ***** may ** ****** *** ******** ***** ********* ** ******* ** more ******** ****** **************. *** ******* ******* **** ****** ********* (due ** **** ** **** ***** ******** ** ****** ** have ******).
  • *******, ** *** ***** ******, **** ********** ** **, ****** resolutions ***** *** ********** ******* **** *****.
  • ********** ** ** ********** ****** ** ******** ******, ** ***** and ***** ******** ******* ************, ********* ***** ******* **** **** super *** ***** ******.
  • * ****** **** ********** (*-*+ **) ******* ********* ****** ******* in *** ****** ** * **** ******** ****** ******* *** overview **** * ***** **** ***** ***** (***°+ ***) ******* at *** ***, *** ******* ******* ** **.
  • ********* ** ***** ** **** ** **** ******** ****** ** what ******** *** **** ******* ** ** ********: *****/**** ** general ******** ** *** **** ******.

******* ****

  • *** *** ** ******* ******** ******* ********* ** ****** **** 1080p ****** ****** *** ***, ******** **** ******** ************** ** subjects.
  • *******, ********** ********** *** ******* ** *****, ** ***** ******* higher *********** ******* ******** ****** *** ***** ***** **** ****** resolution ******, *********** ********** ******* ******* ** *** *** **.
  • *** ******* ** **** ******* *** *******. **** ***** ***** provided ******** ** ********** ** *** ******* ***, *** * moderate ********* ** *********** ** ******** *** ******* ******.
  • ******** *** *** ** ***** **** ******** ********** ****** *********** capabilities, *** * **** ******** ** ******** (**** *** ****** coming *** *****) *** ****, ******** ********* ********** ******* ** the **** *****.
  • ***** **** ******* **** **** **** **** ** ******* ******** for ********* ******, ***** *** ***** ******* ******* ******* ******* to ********** ** *******. ** ***** ** **** ***** *** parking ****, ********** ** ****** ******* ****** ***********.

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

***** ** ***** ************ ** **** *** ********* *** *************** for **** ** ***** *****:

*********

** ******* *********, ** ********* ***** ******* **** **** *** performance (** ****** ************ ******). ******* ****** ***** *********** *** not ********* ****** *** *********** ** **** *****, ********* ** wasted ******* *** *********. ******* ******* *** **** **** ****** due ** ************, ******** ***** ******* ** ******** ********.

********

******** ********, ** ********* ******** **** ** ****, ******** *** aspect ***** **** **:* ** *:**. **** ********** **** ** the **** ***** **** **** ***** ******** *:* ** **:* cameras. *******, **** ********** *** ** ******* ** ****** ** VMS ******.

** ********, **** ********** ** *** ****** ******. ***** ****** resolution ******** **** ****** *** ****, ***** ******* **** ********* handle ***** ***** **** ***** ******, ******** ****** ***** *******. If ***** ** ****** *** ****, *** ******* ***** ** not * ***** *******, ** *** ** ******.

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

** ******* ******** ****** **** ** ********** *****, ** ********* at ***** ***** ********** ** ****. ***** *********** **** ** provide ****** *****. ** ********, **** *********** **** ** ** may ****** ***** ***** ****** **** ******* ** ******** *** activities *** ********** *********.

***** **** ***** ******* *** *********** ** *** ****** **** must ********** ** *******, ******* ** ****** *** *** ** the *****, *** ** ***** ******** ***** ******** ************ ******** to ********* ****** ********* *******.

********** ** ******* *** *********** ** ******** ** ******** **** lights *** ***. ***-** ******* ******* ****** ** *** *** of ********* ** *********** ** ********.

******* ****

***** ******* ******** *** **** ******** ******* *** ***** ********** and ********** ** **** *****. *** *** ** *** ******* more ******* ****** *** ***, *** ****** *********** ******* ******* to ***** ** ***** **** ** **.

** ********* ***** **** ** **** ** ******* ****, ** details ** *** ****** ******** ********* ** ***** ***** *** low. ********* *** *** ** ****** **% **** ****** ** increase ******* ** ****** ** ****** ******, *** ******* *** camera's ******* ** ******* ** ******** ** ******** ********** *** scene.

***** **** ******* **** *** ***, *** ******** ** ******* to *** ********** ** ** ***** *** ***** ******* ***** down ** *** *******:

  • *****:** ***** ** * *** **** ** *** *****, ** order ** ******** ******** ** ********, ***** *** ***** ******* should ** ****.
  • ****:** ***** ** *** ******, ********** ** ******* *** ********* be ********* *** * ***** *****, ***** ***** ********* ***** details.

*********

*****, ** ****** *** ** *** **** ****** ********* *** cameras ** *** ********, ** ******** *****. *** *********, **** the *** ******** *****, ** ****** *** *********:

  • *** **. *** ***
  • ***** **. *** **. **

*** **. ***-*** *******

**** ******* ********** ** ** *** *** **** ********* ****** in ********* ******* *** ******** *******. ** *** ********** *****, with *** **, *** *******, *****, *** **** ******* *** building *** *** ******* *******. **** *** ****** ***, *** subject's **** ** ********* ********, *** ******* ***** *** ********** washed ***.

***** **. * ** **. **

** * ***** ** **** **** ****** (~**'), *** ***** camera ** ****** **** ** ******* *********** ******* ** *** subject. ****** ********** ****** ***** ***** *** *********** (****** **** are **** *** ******), ********* ******* ** *** *******, ******** any ********* ******** *** ** ********* ***.

********

*** ********, **** *** *** ******** *****, ** ****** *** following:

  • *:* ** **:* **. ******** ****
  • ******** **** ******** **. **** **. ***** **** ***
  • ***** **. * ** **. **

*:* **. **:* **. ******** ****

***** ******** *** **** ****** **** **** *** ****, **** 4:3 *** **:* ****** ****** ****** ** *********** ******* ** space ** *** *** ****** ** ******* ***** **** ** blank ***** (*********** ** *** *** ***** *****).******** ********** **** ****** ***** ** *:**, ********* **** ******** ** useful *****, ** *** ** **** *********** ** ***** *****.

************, ***** ** ****** ******* *** ****** ** *******, ******** mode ********* *** **** *** ** ******** ****** ****** **** using *** **** ***** ******, ** *** ** **** ** a ********** ** *** *** *****:

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

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

** *** *** ****** ***** ** **** *** ** ******** mode *******, ** ****** ** ** **** ********* ****** ** view, ******* **** ********** ****** ** ***** **** (***°). ** the ******** *** *****, *** ****** ********** * ***** ** view ******* ** *** **:* ******* *****, ***** **-**°, *** was ******* **** ******** ****. *** *** ************* *******, ** ~90°, ***°, *** ***° ** ****** ** *** *****.

**** **** *** **** ******* *** ****** ******* **** *** more ******* ** *** *** ** *********, ***** *** ** useful ** *********** ********* ******** ******** ** **** **** ******* the ***. *******, *** **** **** (***/***°) ****** ** **** offer ****** **** ********* *****, ** ********* *** ** ********** even ** *** ********* ***** ** ****.

************, ******* **** ******* ** *** *** ** *******, ** can ** **** ** *** ***** *****. ** **** ****, ability ** ******** *** ******* ****** **** *** **** ******* lost ** **° *** ******.

***** **. * ** **. **

**** *** ******* ** *** **** *** ** *** *******, not ************, *** *********** *** **** ** ******* ******* *****. Even ***** ** **** ***** ** ****** **** ** ******* recognition *******.

** *** *** ***** ** *** *******, ~**' **** *** camera ********, ******* ***** ** ****, ****** *** ***** ****** still ******** ******* ******** ** ********* *** *******.

*******, ** *** *** *** ** *** ****, ***** ****** drop ********, **** ~***** ** **. *** ** ********* ***** and *********, **** ** *** ******* *** **** ** ******* definite *********** ** *** *******, **** **** * ******** ********* to ** **********.

Interior *****

*** *****, **** ** *** ********** **** *****, ** ****** the *********:

  • ****** ********: ***** **. ****
  • ****** ******* **** ***** ** ****** ******* ******* *********
  • ***** **. * ** **. **
  • ********** ** **. ***** *** *****

***** **. **** ********

*** ***** ******** ** ******** ******* ** ******** ***** **** as ***** ** *** ******'* ******* *******.

  • ******* ** *** ****, *** ****** *** ** **** ** view ******* ******** ** *** ****, *** * **** ** entries/exits ******* *** **** *** ** ****.
  • ******* ** *** ***** ** *** ****, *** ****** *** more ****** ******* ******** ******** *** *******, *** ******** ** the ***** ** *** **** *** ** ******.

******* ** ****, *** ******** ****** ** ******** ******** ** simply *** *** **** ** ****, *.*., ***** *** ****** are ******* ** ********** **** *****.

***** *** ***** **** *** ********** ******* ***** *** **** mounting:

***** **. *** **. **

** **** ******* ********** **** (~**' * **'), ***** ******** recognizable ******* ** *** *******, ****** **** *** ******* ** higher ********** ******. **** ********** ** ******* ****** ** * MP *** ** ******.

*******, ** *** ***** **** ** **, *** ***** ***** provides ******* ******* ** *** ** ***** *** ******* **** the *** ******, *** ** ****** ****** *** ********* ***** in ***** ***** *******. * ********* ******* **** **** ******* poor ** *** *****. ****** *** ***** ******** ********* **** ***********.

********** ** **. ***** *** *****

*** ********** ***** ***** ***** ********** ** **. ***** *** light *** ************ ***/***** ******. ** ******** ****** **** ** the ********** **** ****, ** ******** *** ** ***** *** other ********, ********* ***** *******. ******* ** *** ***-** ****** show ******* ** *** ******* ** **** ***** ** **** light ***** (****** ***, ~*.****).

***** **** ***** **. *********

**** ********** ************ *** ********** ******* ******** * ****** ****** panoramic ** *** ****** ** *** **** **. * ***** wide ***** ****** ** *** ***. *** ** *** ********* in ********* ********** ** *** **** *** *****, **** ********** 8-9 ** ********* ****** *** *** *********, ********* ****** ******* than **** ****** *** ******* ******* **** ******** ** * 1080p ************ ****** ** *** **** ** *** ****, ***** below.

*******, *** **** ** ***** ******* **** **** ****** *********, improving ******* **** *** **** ***** ***** ***** ***** ** further ****** ** *** ****, *** **** ****** ****** ****** to *** ******.

*** ** *** ******* *****'* ***** ** **, ******* *** similar ** *** ** **** ***** ** **** ** *****, as ****, *** ******** ** *** ***** **** ***** *****.

Parking ****

*** ******* ****, **** *** *** ******** *****, ** ****** the *********:

  • ***** **. * ** **. **
  • **** *** *******
  • ********** ** **. ***** *** *****

***** **. * ** **. **

********* ********** *** ******* **** *********** ******* ** *** ********/***** of **** ***** ** ** *******. ** ***-***** (~**' **** the ******), *** ***** ****** ******** ***** ****** ******* ** the *******, *** **** *** ** ***** ******** ***** *********** (and ********** ** "****" ** *** *****). ** ******** *****, higher ********** ****** **** ******* ***** ** ******** ******** ********* in **** *****, *** ******* ****** ****** ***** *** *******.

**** *** **. ***

** **** ****, ** ******** *** *** **** ***** **', which ******** *** ****** ***** ** *** ******* ***, ********* the ******** ** *** ***** ** *** ****, ** ***** 55'. **** ********* ******* *** ******* ** ******* ******** ******** and *******, ** **** ** *** ***** ******* ***** ** the *****, ***** *** ******** ** *** ***** ***.

************, ******** *** **** *** ****** ** **** ********* **** in *******, **** *** ******* *** ***** **** ******** **** discernible.

********** ** **. ***** *** *****

*******, *** ********** ***** ***** *** ********** ******* * ******* integrated ** ***** *** ***** *** ***** *** ******** ***/***** models. **** **** ** **** *****, *** ******* *** *** illuminated ** ***** * *** ** ******, ******* ** **** parking ****.

***** ** *** **** *****, *** ***** *** ***** ****** captures ****** ****** (***** *******, **** ******* *** *****) ***** the ********** ** ***** **** *** *** *** ******** **** day/night ***** ** **** *********.

** ~**' *****, *** ********** ** ***** ******** *** ******** details ** *** ******* *** *****, *** ** ***** ***********. The ***** *** ***** ***** ** ******* ******* *** **** detailed, *** ***** *********** ** *********.

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

** **** *****, *****, ***, *** ** ******* ******* ******* details ** *** *******, **** *** ************ ** *** ***********. However, **** **** ** ********** ******* ** *** ** *****.

*******, ** ****** *********, ****** *********** *** ****** **** *** 1080p ******, ****** ********* ** *** ******* **** *********, *** providing ** ******* ** ******* ****.

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

** *** *****, ********** *** **** **** ********* **** ***** handling ********** ** ******* ***** ******* ************, **** ***** ******* providing ****** ******* *** ******* ******** ** ** ****** ** many *****, ******* ***** ****** *** ****.

*** *******, ** *** *** ***** ******* *** *********** *****, the ** ****** ******** **** **** ********** **** * ******* 1080p *****, ********* **** **** */***** ********, ******* ****, *** external **. ** ******** *** ***** ****** ** **** ** use * ****** */**** ********, **** ** **** **********.

Comments (4)

***** *****! **** **** *** ********!

***** ******* ****. * ******* ******* *** ** ***** *** a ******* **** *** **** ******* *********** ** *** **** application ******* *'** ****. *'** ** ******* **** **** *** video ******* *****.

******** ***.

***** ******* *** **** ****** & ******* *** ********, **** though **** **** * ********** ** ************ **** *** ******* is ***** ********** ** *** **** *** *** ***** & if *** ************ ****** *** **** - *** ** *** details ***** ** **** **** ****** *** ***** ********* * recognizable ** * ****** *** ******* & ****** ******** - but *** ****** **** **** *** ** * ***-***** ***** thinking **** **** **** ** *** * ***** **** (********* in *** ***) , ****** ** **** **** ********** **** surveillance ** *** ********* ** ****** * ***% ***** **** but ** ********* *** ****** ******** *** *********** **** ****... not **** ** ** ********** ** ******* *** **** ** what * **** ** **** ****; **** ****** *******!

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