Pixord Panoramic Cameras Examined

By: John Honovich, Published on Nov 15, 2011

Low-cost IP camera provider Pixord has released two panoramic models targeting much lower price points than competitors, along with potentially simpler integration. However, Pixord has not been clear about what drawbacks might exist. In this update, we examine Pixord models and their limitations, contrasting with competitors in the panoramic camera space such as Mobotix, Vivotek and ImmerVision.

Product Overview

The Pixord panoramic line consists of the PD636 [link no longer available] and the PD637 [link no longer available] domes, indoor and outdoor, respectively. These cameras are day/night with a mechanical cut filter and a two megapixel sensor. Five megapixel versions are in development. An earlier model, the PD630, is also available, but is VGA only.

The standout feature of the PD cameras is that dewarping is done on the camera, so no software needs to be installed. Users may view dewarped video directly in the camera's web interface. Video may be viewed in multiple configurations, such as a quad screen of dewarped views, a panoramic overview plus two dewarped view, and more. Pixord reports that this method leads to less API work necessary to integrate this series of cameras with various VMS offerings. 

Drawbacks 

However, there are substantial drawbacks to Pixord's dewarping implementation. While a handful of VMSs, such as Milestone, Digifort, Luxriot, and others, list the camera as supported, the integration is basic. Essentially, the VMS sees whatever is set up in the camera's web interface. So in a single XProtect tile, for instance, a user may see any of the above views (quad, pano + 2, etc.), at a maximum total resolution of 2MP for the entire image. Each view in a quad screen layout, for example, would be SVGA (800x600). 

Additionally, no virtual PTZ controls are offered through the VMS, so views may not be changed from the client software. In order to set up a different view, the user must once again go to the camera's web interface. This is a serious limitation, as the number one claimed benefit of panoramic cameras is often the ability to view and record the entire scene, but zoom in on regions of interest as needed. In Pixord's case, the 2MP quad or other view will be recorded by the VMS, with no ability to change views on archived video.

Comparison to Other Offerings

Pricing of the indoor PD636 is low compared to other offerings, nearly half the price. We have used internal Pixord pricing to create an estimated street pricing, since these cameras are not available online:

There are some differences in these cameras. First, both the Mobotix and Vivotek cameras are 3MP, instead of the 2MP Pixord. The Q24 is not day/night and available in color or monochrome only. Finally, both the Vivotek and Mobotix cameras are rated for outdoor use. The PD637 is an outdoor, IP66-rated Pixord model, but pricing was unavailable, as it is a new model. We suspect that the outdoor Pixord model would close the pricing gap somewhat, but still come in less expensive than competitive models.

Of course, Pixord does not compete feature-wise with these other competitors, or with cameras using ImmerVision lenses. Since no recording of the full scene is performed, users are limited to a specific view set up ahead of time. With Pixord:

  • The whole scene may be captured but that will be warped unlike competitors where a dewarped view can be generated dynamically.
  • Alternatively, a set view of different areas can be set. However, you are constrained to only those areas unlike Pixord's competitors where the whole area can be captured and the views can be dynamically changed after the fact.

Pixord's integration / display approach makes it little more than a fixed camera with greater flexibility in selecting digital zooms/display. It might be half the price but if you are looking for a full panoramic solution, this is not it.

Comments : PRO Members only. Login. or Join.

Related Reports

Alarm.com Acquires OpenEye on Oct 21, 2019
Alarm.com is targeting commercial expansion and now they have a commercial cloud VMS with the acquisition of OpenEye. In this note, based on...
Axis HD Analog Encoder Tested on Oct 11, 2019
Two years after declaring "Everything is IP", Axis has released their first HD analog encoder, the P7304, with support for AHD, CVI, TVI, and SD...
Network Optix NxWitness 4.0 Tested on Oct 10, 2019
Network Optix released Nx Witness 4.0, proclaiming new features like a deep learning analytics metadata SDK, increased H.265 support, and UX...
Crisis At China's Largest VMS Provider, Netposa, Now State-Controlled on Oct 07, 2019
NetPosa, which bills itself as the PRC's largest VMS provider, is in a crisis. The firm is pursuing huge unpaid bills from clients, and its...
Vivotek 4K S-Series Camera Tested on Sep 30, 2019
Vivotek's highest-end S-series camera claims "Supreme Night Visibility", "Smart IR II", "Smart Stream II", "WDR Pro for unparalleled visibility in...
RealNetworks SAFR Facial Recognition Profile on Sep 25, 2019
RealNetworks entered the surveillance market by giving away their analytics to schools for free, and is now targeting large commercial users with...
Hikvision Acusense Analytics Tested on Sep 23, 2019
Hikvision touts "The Magic Behind It All" in their new Acusense line are 'deep learning algorithms' inside these cameras and recorders. But how...
Axis Perimeter Defender Improves, Yet Worse Than Dahua and Wyze on Sep 19, 2019
While Axis Perimeter Defender analytics improved from our 2018 testing, the market has improved much faster, with much less expensive offerings...
Directory of 70 Video Surveillance Startups on Sep 18, 2019
This directory provides a list of video surveillance startups to help you see and research what companies are new or not yet broadly known. 2019...
Vivotek "Neural Network-Powered Detection Engine" Analytics Tested on Sep 17, 2019
Vivotek has released "a neural network-powered detection engine", named Smart Motion Detection, claiming that "swaying vegetation, vehicles passing...

Most Recent Industry Reports

Government-Owned Hikvision Wants To Keep Politics Out Of Security on Oct 21, 2019
'Politics' made Hikvision the goliath it is today. It was PRC China 'politics' that created Hikvision, funded it, and blocked its foreign...
Integrated IR Camera Usage Statistics 2019 on Oct 21, 2019
Virtually every IP camera now comes with integrated IR but how many actually make use of IR or choose 'super' low light cameras without IR? In...
Alarm Veteran "Demands A Criminal Investigation" Of UL on Oct 18, 2019
The Interceptor's Project pressure against UL continues to rise. Following Keith Jentoft's allegation that "UL Has Blood On Their Hands", Jentoft...
Camect "Worlds Smartest Camera Hub" Tested on Oct 18, 2019
Camect is a Silicon Valley startup that claims the "Smartest AI Object Detection On The Market", detecting not only people and vehicles, but...
Hikvision Global News Reports Directory on Oct 17, 2019
Hikvision has received the most global news reporting of any video surveillance company, ever, ranging from the WSJ, the Financial Times, Reuters,...
Camera Calculator V3.1 Release Improves User Experience on Oct 17, 2019
IPVM has released a new version of our Camera Calculator, V3.1, with significant user experience improvements, a new development plan, and an...
Securing Access Control Installations Tutorial on Oct 17, 2019
The physical security of access control components is critical to ensuring that a facility is truly secure. Otherwise, the entire system can be...
Access Control Course Fall 2019 - Last Chance on Oct 17, 2019
Register Now - Fall 2019 Access Control Course. Thursday, October 17th is the last day to register. IPVM offers the most comprehensive access...
US DoD Comments on Huawei, Hikvision, Dahua Cyber Security Concerns on Oct 16, 2019
A senior DoD official said the US is "concerned" with the cybersecurity of Hikvision, Dahua, and Huawei due to "CCP" (China Communist Party)...
Pelco Sarix Pro3 Camera Tested on Oct 16, 2019
Pelco has released their Sarix Professional Series 3 cameras, claiming "more security detail in challenging scenes with excellent low light and...