Milestone / Razberi All in One NVR Reviewed

By Brian Rhodes, Published on Mar 01, 2012

Traditionally, small to mid size projects has been the weakest fit for VMS software, due to low camera counts and setup complexity. Recently, providers have been rolling out VMS appliances to simplify deployment. Now, VMS provider Milestone Systems and Razberi have joined forces on a new 'all in one' NVR appliance pre-loading Milestone software. In this note, we review the key features and the competitiveness to doing it oneself and to Milestone's own NVR.

Offering overview

This new offering combines the Razberi M16 NVR and Milestone XProtect VMS software (all versions are available). Razberi pre-installs but does not pre-license the Milestone software. Milestone VMS is licensed and purchased separately from the M16 NVR.

Razberi M16 key features include:

  • Single rack space (1U) appliance
  • 16 Port PoE Switch (with 4 being High PoE)
  • Up to 6TB HDD storage
  • 720 FPS total video budget, at 1080p resolution

See our previous review for details and analysis on the M16.

For 16 channel deployments, the most common version of Milestone to be used is Essential (up to 26 cameras, Low cost: ~$50 per camera).

The M16 MSRPs for $4,435 USD, and Essential with 16 camera licenses cost around $800 USD. Combined, this is retail price ~$5,200 USD.

Comparison

To gauge the offering's competitivness, we contrast to a DIY/COTS approach and to Milestone's Essential NVR.

With the DIY or 'Do It Yourself' the VMS server is built from off the shelf (COTS) components. To be functionally equivalent to the M16, an extra switch must be added to the list of components. Here is an estimate of our the core components:

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  • COTS Server: $1000-$2000
  • 16 Port PoE Switch: $400-$600
  • Operating System license: $100-$300
  • Milestone VMS Software: $800

When adding the $100 - $200 cost of configuration labor, these elements added together represent a 'cost' of around $3,000 USD. 

Milestone offers a private-labeled HP OEMed NVR [link no longer available], running "XProtect Essential" VMS software that also is limited to 16 cameras. This package includes a workstation preloaded with Essential and 16 camera licenses.  Milestone sells this product with a street price of around $3,500 USD. This product is not furnished with a PoE switch, and adding that hardware brings the total package street price to $4,000 USD.

Here is our estimated street prices of equivalent platforms:

  • Razberi M16 'Milestone' version: ~$4,200 USD
  • Do It Yourself / COTS version: around ~$3,000 USD
  • Milestone Essential NVR version: around ~$4,000 USD

Our analysis indicates that the Razberi/Milestone combo is notably more expensive than both the DIY COTS NVR and the Milestone Essential NVR. The factory install of software and configuration of components could save time, making it a more appealing option for smaller jobs and quick installs. 

Recommendations

Like the Milestone NVR, we think the Razberi/Milestone combination will have limited appeal because of the notable premium over the more common COTS approach. However, future moves may improve this positioning.

Future Moves

Razberi says that they are developing bundled packages of 3rd party VMS software and appliances that will offer discounted pricing. It will be interesting to see how much of a discount it provides and what impacts this has on positioning.

Additionally, Razberi says that they are pursuing partnerships with other VMS software providers to provide a lineup of appliances pre-loaded with VMS software. This will provide an interesting, lower cost alternative to Intransa's offering.

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