Parking Garage Shootout

Author: Benros Emata, Published on May 14, 2011

Parking garages are a key area for using surveillance cameras. Thefts, assaults, vandalism and accidents are among the many incidents that cameras can help solve.

Monitoring parking garages effectively is more challenging than it first appears. On the plus side, garages are generally enclosed and laid out in long lanes conducive to surveillance camears. However, most parking garages have openings on the side that expose the garages to sunlight. Also, garages depend on artificial lighting that can create great variation of lighting across the scene.

Below is an image from our testing scene showing the presence of outdoor opening and artificial lighting. The cameras were mounted at ceiling level aimed directly down the middle of the driving lane to capture people and cars moving through the garage:

In the test, we used a kit of 7 different cameras (including SD, 720p, 2MP, 3MP and 5MP from Arecont Vision, Axis, Bosch, IQinVision and Sony) to better understand the tradeoffs for ourselves.

The overhead image and map below demonstrates the coverage, distances and pixels per foot at different positions:

Then we analyzed a series of scenes to see how performance varied across the cameras. We digitally zoomed each camera to the same level to see the differences. See an example scene comparison from our parking lot test.

We conducted our analysis across 16 scenes. They are:

  • Midday Back Lighting (Far Vehicle)
  • Midday Back Lighting (Near Vehicle)
  • Midday Even Lighting (Far Human)
  • Midday Even Lighting (Near Human)
  • Twilight Back Lighting (Far Vehicle)
  • Twilight Back Lighting (Near Vehicle)
  • Twilight Back Lighting (Far Human)
  • Twilight Back Lighting (Near Human)
  • Nighttime Color (Far Vehicle)
  • Nighttime Color (Near Vehicle)
  • Nighttime Color (Far Human)
  • Nighttime Color (Near Human)
  • Nighttime BW (Far Vehicle)
  • Nighttime BW (Near Vehicle)
  • Nighttime BW (Far Human)
  • Nighttime BW (Near Human)

Inside the Pro section, we analyze and show the differences captured in each scenario. We focus on the significant practical problems that significant lighting variations may cause.

******* ******* *** * *** **** *** ***** ************ *******. Thefts, ********, ********* *** ********* *** ***** *** **** ********* that ******* *** **** *****.

********** ******* ******* *********** ** **** *********** **** ** ***** appears. ** *** **** ****, ******* *** ********* ******** *** laid *** ** **** ***** ********* ** ************ *******. *******, most ******* ******* **** ******** ** *** **** **** ****** the ******* ** ********. ****, ******* ****** ** ********** ******** that *** ****** ***** ********* ** ******** ****** *** *****.

***** ** ** ***** **** *** ******* ***** ******* *** presence ** ******* ******* *** ********** ********. *** ******* **** mounted ** ******* ***** ***** ******** **** *** ****** ** the ******* **** ** ******* ****** *** **** ****** ******* the ******:

** *** ****, ** **** * *** ** * ********* cameras (********* **, ****, ***, *** *** *** **** ******* Vision, ****, *****, ********** *** ****) ** ****** ********** *** tradeoffs *** *********.

*** ******** ***** *** *** ***** ************ *** ********, ********* and ****** *** **** ** ********* *********:

**** ** ******** * ****** ** ****** ** *** *** performance ****** ****** *** *******. ** ********* ****** **** ****** to *** **** ***** ** *** *** ***********. *** ********* ***** ********** **** *** ******* *** ****.

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

  • ****** **** ******** (*** *******)
  • ****** **** ******** (**** *******)
  • ****** **** ******** (*** *****)
  • ****** **** ******** (**** *****)
  • ******** **** ******** (*** *******)
  • ******** **** ******** (**** *******)
  • ******** **** ******** (*** *****)
  • ******** **** ******** (**** *****)
  • ********* ***** (*** *******)
  • ********* ***** (**** *******)
  • ********* ***** (*** *****)
  • ********* ***** (**** *****)
  • ********* ** (*** *******)
  • ********* ** (**** *******)
  • ********* ** (*** *****)
  • ********* ** (**** *****)

****** *** *** *******, ** ******* *** **** *** *********** captured ** **** ********. ** ***** ** *** *********** ********* problems **** *********** ******** ********** *** *****.

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

Key ******** *** ***************

** **** ****** ****** *** ******* ****** ********* ********* ******* advantages ******** ** ******** ********** *******. ** **** ******, **** relatively **** ********, ********* ********* ****** **********.

**************, *** *** ********* *** *** **** ********* ** ******** in *** *****. *** ********, ****** *** ***, *** ********* in ******** ******* *** ****** *** ******* ***** ****** **** common ** *** *****. **** ********* *** **** ******* **** the *********** ******** ***** **** ** ****** ********(***** *** * *** ********* ******* **** *** ***** *****). At *****, *** ********** ******* *** *** ********** ** ********** lighting ******* ********** ** ****. ******** ********** *** ******, *** lux ***** **** ** ************* ** *** *** ** ******* lights, *** *** ***** ******* ** *** ** * *** - * *********** ******, **** ** *** ** *********** ** the *** ****.

*** ********** ************ ** *** ******* ***** ** ********* ***** certain **********:

  • ****** / ******** **** ***** ****** ******** ********* *** ********** by **** ** ****
  • ******* ****** **** **** *** *** ** ******** ** ***** or ***** ************ ***** **** ************* **** **********
  • ********** ******** **** **** **** ***** ****** ***** ******* ***** time ***********
**** *****, ** ********* *** *********:
  • ********* ******** *** ****** ** *** ******** ********** ** ******* lots. **** *** ****** ** ************ ** ******** **** ******* *** **** ******. ******** *** ******** *********** ** ********* unlikely *** ******* *** *********** ************ *** ********** *** ** quite ********.
  • ** *** ********* ********* ** * ****** ********* ******** ** the ****** *** ******** **********. **** **** *** **** *** will ****** *********** ************** *** *** ********.
  • ******** ***** ***** **** *&* **** ** *****. ***** *** artificial ********, *** ***** ****** *** *** ********* ***********. **** importantly, **** ******'* *&* **** **** ** ******** ***** **** artificial ***** ******* (**** ** *** ********** *** ******** ********).

Midday **** ******** (*** *******)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * vehicle ~**** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. ***** is ~**,*** *** ** **** ******** *** ~*** *** ** illumination ** *** ****** ********** ****. ** * ****** ******** conditions *** * ************ *********.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

**** ** *** ******* ******* ********** ******* *** ***** *******. However, *** ****** ** (*** *** ***) *** **** ******* reveal ****** ***** ******** ****** *** ***** ******* *** ****** effects. ** **** ************** ** ****, ***** *** ***** *** considerably ******. ***** *** ** *****, *** ** ******* ******* at ***** **** '****' ** ** *** ****, ***** *** color. **** **** *** *** *****-**** ** ***** ******-***, *** still ******* ** ******* **** *** ******* (***** ******* *** ground *******).

Midday **** ******** (**** *******)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * vehicle ~**** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. ***** is ~**,*** *** ** **** ******** *** ~*** *** ** illumination ** *** ****** ********** ****. ** * ****** ******** conditions *** * ************ *********.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

*** ****** ** *** **** ******* ******* *** ******** ***** capture, ****** *** *** *** (******) ***** ** *** *****-*******. Of *** ** ******* *** **** (**** *****) ******** ******** probability ** * ********** ***** ******* - **** **** ******** certainty. *** ** **** ** ******* *** ** ******* ******* no ********** ****** ** ***** ******* *** ***** *********** ***** of *****-******** ***** *********** **** *** ***** **** ****** ** well.

Midday **** ******** (*** *****)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * human ******* ~***** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. There ** ~**,*** *** ** ****-***** *** ~*** *** ** illumination ** *** ****** ********** ****. ** * ****** ******** conditions *** * ************ *********.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

***** ******** ***** * ******* ** *** ****** ** (***, 3MP, *** ***) ***** *** ***** ******* ** **** ******-***, obscuring ****** *******. *******, * **** ***** ** *** *******'* build, ****** *** **** *****/***** *** ** ********. *** **** cameras ******* *** **** ***** ** *****, ****** *** **** color/style, *** **** * **** ** ** ********** ** ****. Note **** *** ***, ***, *** **** **** ******* ** indication ** * **** ** *** ***** **** ******* ** the *******'* *****.

Midday **** ******** (**** *****)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * human ******* ~**** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. There ** ~**,*** *** ** ****-***** *** ~*** *** ** illumination ** *** ****** ********** ****. ** * ****** ******** conditions *** * ************ *********.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

******* ************ ** ******* *** ******* ** ** ********* *****-******* here ** *** ****** **********. ******** ** ************ *** ** the ******* *** ******* *** *********** ******* ** ***** **** contours. ***** ***** ********** **** ** *** ******* (** ** SD) *** ******* **************. ******** **********, ******** ** *** '***' scenario, ******* ****** ***** ** ********** - *.*., ** ******* to ****** *** ********** *** **** ***** ** ****. **** even ******* **** ** *** ******** ** * ***** **** is **** ** ****.

Twilight **** ******** (*** *******)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * vehicle ~**** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. ***** is ~*,*** *** ** **** ******** *** ~** *** ** illumination ** *** ****** ********** ****. ** * ****** ******** conditions *** * ************ *********.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

**** *** *** ******** * ****** ***** **** ****** *** a ********** ****** ** ***** *******. *** **** (**** *****) provides *** **** **** ****** *** ***** *******. *** ***** pattern ** ****** ***** ** ***** *** ******* ** ****, improving *** **** ** ****/***** **************. **** **** *** ***'* especially ******-*** ***** ******** ******* ** ******* *****, ***** *******, and ******* ********** ** *****.

Twilight **** ******** (**** *******)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * vehicle ~**** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. ***** is ~*,*** *** ** **** ******** *** ~** *** ** illumination ** *** ****** ********** ****. ** * ****** ******** conditions *** * ************ *********.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

******* ** *** '****** **** ******** (**** *******)' *********, *** MP (********* *** *** ******) *** **** ******* ******* * good ***** ** ****** *** ****** ****** **** ** * successful ***** *******. ************, *** ** ******* *** *** ********* sufficient ******* *** * ****** ** ******** ****** ** ***** capture. ******* *** **** (**** *****) ******** *** ******* ***** of ******* *** ********** **** ** ***** ******* ***** *** composite.

Twilight **** ******** (*** *****)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * human ******* ~***** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. There ** ~*,*** *** ** **** ******** *** ~** *** of ************ ** *** ****** ********** ****. ** * ****** lighting ********** *** * ************ *********.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

**** ** *** ******* ******* ****** ******* *** *********** *** human *******. *******, **** ******* ******* ******** ** ****** *********** of ******, *****, ********, **** *****/*****, *** ******* **********. *** one ********* ** *** *** (******), ***** ** ************ ******-*** and ********* ******* ** *** *******'* ****** *******.

Twilight **** ******** (**** *****)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * human ******* ~**** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. There ** ~*,*** *** ** **** ******** *** ~** *** of ************ ** *** ****** ********** ****. ** * ****** lighting ********** *** * ************ *********.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

**** ** *** ******* ******* ****** ****** ******* *** **** certainty **************. ******, *** ****** ******** ****** ***** ****** ** 'smeared' *** ** *** ******** ** *** *******. *******, ** contrast ** *** '******' *********** ***** ** ** ******* ****** improvement ** ***** ******* *** ****** *****. *** *******, * better ***** ** *** *******'* **********, ******** *** **** *****/***** is ***** - ****** '****** **** ********' ***** **** ***** outlines ** *** ******* **** ********.

Nighttime ***** (*** *******)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * vehicle ~**** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. **** that ************ ** *** ********* ******* ** *** ******* ****** is ~* ***, *** **** ******** ******** *** *********** ** artificial ****** (~** ** ~** ***). **** **** */* ******* have **** '******' ** ***** ****.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

******* ** *** '******** **** ******** (*** *******)' ********, **** the *** ******** ****** ******* *** * ********** ****** ** plate *******. **** **** ******* *** *** **** **** ** they ******* * ******* ** ********** ***** *** ******* ***** characters. *******, *** *********** ** * ********** ***** ******* **** the **** ******* ** ***** ********** ** **** ********** ********. Note *** *** ** ********* *********** ***** **** ****-******, ********* in ** ***** ** ****** ******* ************* ******* - *.*. highly ******* **** ******** *** ***** *******.

Nighttime ***** (**** *******)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * vehicle ~**** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. **** that ************ ** *** ********* ******* ** *** ******* ****** is ~* ***, *** **** ******** ******** *** *********** ** artificial ****** (~** ** ~** ***). **** **** */* ******* have **** '******' ** ***** ****.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

*** ******* (**** ** *** **) ******* * ******** ** high ***** ** ******* ***** ******. ** ****, * ******** to **** ******** ********* ** ***** ******* ** ********. *** 720p (**** *****) ******* ******** *** **** ****** ***** ** the ******* *****. *************, *** ** ******* ******* ******** ****** clarity *** ***** ******* **** *** *** *** *** *******, which *** ******** ****** *** ***** **** ********.

Nighttime ***** (*** *****)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * human ******* ~***** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. Note **** ************ ** *** ********* ******* ** *** ******* garage ** ~* ***, *** **** ******** ******** *** *********** by ********** ****** (~** ** ~** ***). **** **** */* cameras **** **** '******' ** ***** ****.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

****** *** *********, **** ****** ****** ** *** ***** ******* is ***** *********. ** * ******, ******* ** ************** * likely *******. **** ***** * ***** ** **********, ******** *** clarity ** ** **** **** ***** ******** *********** **** ** gender, *****, **** *****/***** ***. *** *** ******* ***********. **** that ** *** *** *** *** ** *** **** (***** NBN-921), ** ** ***** ********* ** **** ****** ** ****** human ******* ** *** *****.

Nighttime ***** (**** *****)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * human ******* ~**** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. Note **** ************ ** *** ********* ******* ** *** ******* garage ** ~* ***, *** **** ******** ******** *** *********** by ********** ****** (~** ** ~** ***). **** **** */* cameras **** **** '******' ** ***** ****.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

** ***** ******** *** '***' ***********, **** ********* ******* ****** detail ****** ** *** ***** ******* ****** *** *******, ****** identification ****** ******. ***** ******* ** *********** ****** ** *** 5MP, ***** *** **** ** *** *******'* ***** ** ***** crisp.

Nighttime ** (*** *******)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * vehicle ~**** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. **** that ************ ** *** ********* ******* ** *** ******* ****** is ~* ***, *** **** ******** ******** *** *********** ** artificial ****** (~** ** ~** ***). **** **** */* ******* have **** '******' ** */* ****.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

**** ** *** ******* ******* ********** ******* *** * **** certainty ***** *******. *** **** (***-***) ** ******** *** **** in *** *********, *** ******** **** * ******* ** ******* plate ******* *** * ************ ***** ****** ** ***** *******. The ***** **** ****-****** ** ***** ****** ** *** *** and ***, ********* ** * **** ** ****** ******* **** could *********** **** ** ****, *****, *** ***** ***********.

Nighttime ** (**** *******)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * vehicle ~**** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. **** that ************ ** *** ********* ******* ** *** ******* ****** is ~* ***, *** **** ******** ******** *** *********** ** artificial ****** (~** ** ~** ***). **** **** */* ******* have **** '******' ** */* ****.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

*** ******** ** ******* ******* ********** ******* *** ******** ***** capture. *** ******* ** ********* ***** **** **** ******** (*** and **** **** *****), ******** (**** ***** ***-*** *** ** Axis *****) ** ****** (***, ***, *** ** ***** ***-***). While *** *** *** *** ******* ****** *********** ****** ** bloom **** ****-****** **** *** *** **** ** ******* **** key ******* ** *** ***** *******, ****** *******, *** ******* body ********.

Nighttime ** (*** *****)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * human ******* ~***** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. Note **** ************ ** *** ********* ******* ** *** ******* garage ** ~* ***, *** **** ******** ******** *** *********** by ********** ****** (~** ** ~** ***). **** **** */* cameras **** **** '******' ** */* ****.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

**** ** *** ******* ******* ****** ****** *** **************. ********* two ********** ** ******* ******* ****** **** **** *********. *** in ***** ** **** *** ******** ** * ***** ** detectable ****** *** ***** (*.*., *** *** **** ****), *** another ** ***** * ***** ******* ** *** ****** ** be ******** ** *** (***, ***, ** ***-***). **** ** which * ***** ** ********** ****** **** **** * **** of ******** *** ******* **** ** ***** ****** *********** (*.*. complexion, ******, ******** ***.) ** ****** ** ** ********.

Nighttime ** (**** *****)

** **** ********, ******* *** ********* ****** **** ** * human ******* ~**** ***, ************* ** * **** ** ~****. Note **** ************ ** *** ********* ******* ** *** ******* garage ** ~* ***, *** **** ******** ******** *** *********** by ********** ****** (~** ** ~** ***). **** **** */* cameras **** **** '******' ** */* ****.

***** ** *** ********* ******** (******** **** ***** ****):

*********** ****** ******** *** ******** ** *** ******* ****** *** composite.

***********

*** ********* *** *** ***** (*) ******* **** ** *** 'Parking ****** ********':

  • ******* ******(****** $***) - ***/*.*** */*; */*" ****; ****** **.*; *.* Lux (**)
  • **** *****(****** $***) - **** *****-****; */*" ****; ********** **.*; *.* Lux (*****)
  • **** *****(****** $****) - *** */*; */*.*" ****; **.* ****;*.** *** (BW)
  • ***** ***-***(****** $***) - **** */*; */*" ***; **.* *****; *.* Lux (**)
  • ***** ***-***(****** $***) - ** */*; */*" ***; **.* *****; *.** Lux (**)
  • ********** *******(****** $***) - *** *****-****; */*" ****; **.* **********; *.* Lux
  • **** *****(****** $***) - **** */*; */*" ****; **.* *******; *.* Lux (**)

**** ** *** ***** ******* **** ************** ******** ** ** Exacqvision *** ****** **** (*) *** *********. *** ******* *** set ** ***** ******** ****** *******, ****** ****** *** ********* tests. ****** ********* ***** */* ******* **** ****** '******' **** B/W ** ***** **** ** ****** *********** ** **********. *** camera ****** **** ******** ** * ******* **** ***** (~** degrees) *** ********/******** ** ***** ******* ***********.

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

  • ******* ****** - ********* ********
  • **** ***** - ******** ***** '**'; ******** ******* '*********'
  • **** ***** - ******** ***** '**'; ******** ******* '*********'
  • ***** ***-*** - */*** *******; ****** **; *** ** '**'
  • ***** ***-*** - */*** *******; ****** **; *** ** '**'
  • ********** ******* -*/** *******; *****-****
  • **** ***** - */*** *******; ****-**/** **; *** '******'

**** *** *** **** (*) *** ********* ** ********:

  • ****** **** ******** - ~**,*** *** (********* ****); ~*** *** (covered ****)
  • ******** **** ******** - ~*,*** *** (********* ****); ~** *** (covered ****)
  • ********* */* **** - ~* *** (********* ****); ~** ** 50 *** (******* ****)
  • ********* ***** **** - ~* *** (********* ****); ~ ** to ** *** (******* ****)

**** ** *** **** (*) *** ********* ******* *** **** choreographed ********. *** ******** ******** * ***** ******* ******* ******* the ****** *** **** * '***' ******** (~*****) ** * 'near' ******** (~****). ****, * ******* ******* ****** ******* ** towards *** ****** *** **** * '***' ******** (~*****) ** a '****' ********' (~****).

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