Inputs/Outputs For Video Surveillance Guide

By: IPVM Team, Published 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 of their flexibility can save hundreds of dollars on complex designs.

In this guide, we explain camera I/O and how it can be used to integrate devices and functions not supported out of the box in surveillance. Inside, we cover:

  • Input/output basics
  • I/O styles (on board vs. whip vs. removable)
  • I/O equipment: Cameras, modules, recorders
  • Common applications for inputs
  • Common applications for outputs
  • Form factor differences
  • VMS integration issues
  • ONVIF support issues
  • Camera capabilities vary widely
  • VMS multi-camera I/O integration
  • VMS support variance
  • I/O troubleshooting drawbacks

Input *** ****** ******

****** ***, ****** *** outputs ****** ** ******* very *** ******* ** current ** ******* ** send ******* ******* (**** and ******). ******* ******* from * ****** (**** as * ********* ** PIR)** ** ************* ******* ** *** device, ***** ****** ** the ****** (*********, ***, or *******) *** ******* voltage ** ** **** **** ** ****** ** * ********* ****** such ** * ***** or ********* ********* ******.

*********, ***** ******* *** triggered ***** **** ********** of ***** ** *-** VDC. **** ****** *** use ****** ******** *** wattages ***** *** ******** able ** ***** **** peripheral ******* (**** ** PIR ****** *******), *** these *** ********. 

I/O *********

****** *** ******* ********* fall **** *** ** three ******:

  • ******** ** ******:*****, **** ******* ***** I/O ******** ** *** camera ******, **** ** the ****** **** ** this *** ****** *****. This ********* ** ****** on ****** **** **** dome/bullet ******* ***** **** space *** ***** ***********, but **** ****** ** compact ******.

  • ****** **** ****** ****:******, ******* ******* **** commonly ***** */* ** the ***** ****, ***** the ******** ** *** camera *** *** ** accessible ** ******** ** rating.

  • ********/********* ****:*******, ****** **** **** an ******** **** **** may ** ********* ** needed, ** ****** *** installed *** ** ***. This ****** ** ********** to **** ********** ******* of ****** *****, ***** I/O ** *** **** in **** ******** *** may ****** ** ******* for ****** ***** **********.

Other */* *******

** ******** ** *******, inputs *** ******* *** also ** ***** ** NVRs *** ****, ** well ********* ******* */* modules, ******* ***** ****** similarly ** ******* ** VMSes, *** ******* **** I/O *** ** *****.

***** ********** ******* *** typically **** **** **** cameras ** *** ******* I/O, ***** ******* *** more ****** ** ** mounted ***** ** *** device **** *** ********** or ***** ********* **. However, **** *** **** be **** **** *********** connection ** *********, **** as * ****** ** inputs *** ******* *********** an ********* ****, * common ******** */* ***********.

Input ************

***** *** ******* ****** applications *** ***** ****** in ************ *******, ******* from ****** ** *******.

**** ** *** **** common *******:

  • ********* ******* ** ***** recording:**** ********, ***** *** attach *** ****** ********* or **** ******** ** camera ****** ** ***** to ******* ********* ** event. ***** ********* **** provide * **** ******** detection ****** **** ***** video ****** ********* ** analytics, *** *** **** be ********** ********** ** logged ** *** ********, in ***** ** **** entries ** * ******** area ****** ** ****, for *******.
  • ********** ** ****** ***/***** status:**** ************* *** *** photocells ** ******* ***/***** switching ******* ** *** camera ************* ********* ***** on ***** *****. **** is ****** **** ***** IR ************ ** **** the ****** *** *********** are ************, *** *** also ** **** ** some ***** ***** ******* switch ***********, **** ** shaded ***** ***** ****** too ***** ** *** day.
  • *******/******** ** ******* ******:*******, ***** *** ******* buttons ** ******** ***** drive ******** ****** ** the ******, **** ** increasing ********* *** ******* emails **** * ***** button ** ******.

*** *** **** * few ******** ** ***** applications. *********** ******** **** can ******* * ******* closure *** ** **** to ***** ******.

Output ************

***** *** ******* ****** applications *** *******, ** well:

  • ****/**** *******:******* *** ******** ********* to ****** ******* ******* to ******* **** ******* for ******** ** ** open *****. ***** *** camera ** ******* **** these ******** *** ******* allows ****** ******* *** its *** ********* ** via *** ***, ** is ***** **** **** effective ** ******* ******* via ****** *******.
  • ******/********:******, ******* *** ** used ** ******* ****** or ******** ** *****, to **** ***** ********* to ******** ******* ** notify ****** *** *** not ** ******** *** camera's ***** ****. ***** may **** ******* ******* announcers ** **** ******** messages ** *****, **** as ******* ********* **** they **** **** ******** using ***** *********.
  • ********* ***********:*******, ****** ******* *** be **** ** ******* zones ** ** ********* detection ****** ** *********, such ** ***** *********, in ***** ** ******* a ****** *********** *** central ******* ********** ***** direct ** *********** ** not *********.

Camera **** ****** ***********

************ ** */* *****, but *** ******, ******* on **** ****** **** factor ** ****. *** ******* most ***** ******* */*, regardless ** ****, ***** domes *** ******* **** depending ** *** ************ and ******.

***** ****, ******* ******* frequently ** *** ******* I/O, ***** ****** *** models **. *** *******, Axis *** ****** ***** include ** ****** ** outputs, ***** * ****** models ******* ********. *******, some *** **** *****/*********** series ********* ******* ******* I/O, ***** ****** ** not. ******* ** ****, I/O ******* ****** ****** be ********* **** *** manufacturer.

************, *** **** ****** Finder *** **** **** various ****** **** */*, such **:

VMS *********** ******

**** **** **** ******* a ****** ******** */* does *** **** ***** should ****** ***** ****** VMS ********** **. ***** often ********* ******** **** as *********, *************, *** motion ********* ******* *********** I/O ******* ** ** a **** ********** **** feature.

*/* ******* *** ********* be ***** ** *** VMS' ********* ******* ****, and **** ** ****** criteria ** ****** ** selecting ******** *************' ********* models. *** *******, ***** denotes */* ******* ** their ********* ******* ****:

*** ** ***** ** see ******** ************, ***** must ***** ***** ******** test *******, ***** ***** the ****** ** */* supported:

ONVIF */* *******

*/* ******* ** ******** via *****, *** **** commonly ******** **** ** direct ****** *******.***** ******* ********* **** ****** ******* be *********, *** *** inputs, ***** *** ** optional *******. ******* ** this, **** ******* * cameras' */* *** *** fully **********. *** *************** * *** ****** ****, *** is *** ******** ** be ******* ***** ****.

Camera ************* ******

******* **** ****** */* can ** **** *** varies **** ************ ** manufacturer *** **** ****** to ******. *** *******, Hikvision ****** ****** *********** allow ***** ** ******* a ***** (***-******* *****), send *****, ****** ** SD, *** ******* *** alarm ******.

*******, ******, **** ** the **** ****** ***** below, ***** *** **** actions ** ***** ******, such ** ******** ******* text, ********* ***/***** ****, sending**** ******* *** *************, *** switching ******* ******** ***** (WDR, *****, ***.).

VMS ************ ****

*********** */* **** ***** opens ** **** ******* actions **** ***** ******* alone, ***** ******** *******' inputs *** ******* *** be **** ********. *** example, **** ***** ***** the ***** ** *** camera ** ******* *** output ** *******, ***** below. **** ***** ***** a **** ** ******* a ********* ****** *** door ******* **** * reception **** ********* ** one ******, ***** ******** the ****** ** ******* camera **** ************ ******* near *** **** ** related ****** ******, ************* reducing ***** ************ **** compared ** * *******.

****** *** **** ** used ** ****** ******* VMS **********, **** ** changing **** ******* ** recording ***** ****, ******* audio ********* **/***, ********** cameras ** *******, ***.

*******, ***** ************ **** quite ************* **** *** to ***, *** ********* found ** *** *** not ** ******** ** another. ***** ****** ****** test ***** ******* ************* before ******** ** ** available.

I/O *************** *********

***** */* ** ******* devices ***** *** ********* of *********** ********** **** back **** *** ********. Instead ** *************** ************ supported ************, *** ********** is *************** * "***-***" custom ********. **** * feature **** *** ******** as ******** ** ***** working, *** ********** ** often ** ***** *** during *************** ***** ***********. Because ** ****, */* is ********* **** *** smaller *************. ***** ***** quantities ** *********** ******* devices ** *******, ***/*** software *********** ** **** often *********, ********** ***** supported ** *** ************(*).

Comments (5)

 

Also note that some models actually have dry contacts, where as some are voltage sensing and voltage output. Some older Axis cameras have dry closed contact inputs and 12v outputs. Be wary of the input voltage limitations. It's possible to have a camera input that's looking for a 5v signal, not 12v. 

 

This has come into play where a client was using the IO on an Axis camera. The input was coming from a dry contact relay of a beam break sensor and the output was 12v, which triggered a gate to drop. That output was only capable of supplying about 150ma if I recall correctly. 

 

Usually the camera's spec sheet will tell you if it's a TTL level signal or a dry contact.

 

 

Also note that some models actually have dry contacts, where as some are voltage sensing and voltage output.  Some older Axis cameras have dry closed contact inputs...

Aren’t a camera’s I/O inputs always dry?

Most of the outputs are dry but you typically will need some type of low current relay if the load on the output is more than 100 mA. So if you hookup say a strobe that has a load of 250mA you will most like blow out the internal relay. Years ago some of the older cameras did have wet outputs. The main importance here is to make sure, "I am the last person to say Read the Users Manual" but for this it is important. I used to hook up a speaker to Axis cameras and then setup motion zones to activate the output and have the speaker play one of the pre-recorded messages. The best one was a camera that looked at a dumpster and when the scrappers came by they would hear the dog bark. Scared them at first but eventually they would figure it out. Of course now with IP speakers this task is really simple. See below. This is for an Axis camera.

 

I used Dvr input from v110 relay to send a email alert wen AC POWER is down to UPS 

Nice article guys!

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