Average Frame Rate Video Surveillance 2011

Author: John Honovich, Published on Nov 03, 2011

UPDATE: NEW VERSION - Average Frame Rate Video Surveillance 2016

People are used to watching TV at about 30 frames per second, often called 'full' frame rate. In the video surveillance world, full frame rate IP cameras are becoming more and more common. Indeed, today, most professional IP cameras are designed to stream up to 30 frames per second.

However, what frame rate is actually being used in the field today? In this note, we share the responses from over 80 integrators who deploy 1000s of systems around the world. This shows what really is chosen and why it is.

Let's start with a table that breaks down integrator responses:

What stands out right away is how low the average frame rate used for video surveillance recording is. Nearly 70% record at 10fps or less, a level that is about 70% less than 'full' frame rate.

To better understand why integrators choose what they did, we asked them to explain their choices.

Integrators using an average of less than 5fps cited:

  • "storage and network requirements"
  • "enhance the time stored on hard drives"
  • "cost of storage"
  • "Most clients want to record at higher frame rate until you tell them how much storage they will need. At that point, we tell them how much storage their budget will allow and then we back into the frame rate."
  • "Storage may be cheaper but not so cheap to justify more than 5FPS that often"

Not surprisingly, this group is motivated mostly by the cost of storage.

Let's compare to integrators using an average of 6 - 10 fps who represented the majority of respondents:

  • "Quality pics and small storage requirements -- a happy medium."
  • "I don't find any need to go higher than 10 FPS unless they have a LOT of additional storage that they don't require."
  • "A balance between storage and seeing all the event"
  • "This is all the operator needs to get a very good image"
  • "We keep it at 8fps to get fluid video on playback"
  • " 6 to 10 fps is fast enough to provide adequate detail in a fast action event (e.g. a running suspect, or an assault/battery type of incident) and this is even more true if the LIGHTING IS ADEQUATE AND PROPER. I'd rather have the customer spend money on good lighting and have medium frame rate video rather than a faster frame rate with crappy lighting."

The 6 - 10fps respondents are the 'balanced' group - use a high enough frame rate for an acceptablely smooth video display but save on storage costs.

Get Video Surveillance News In Your Inbox
Get Video Surveillance News In Your Inbox

Now let's compare to the 11 - 19 fps respondents:

  • "Customer requirement"
  • "Detail and clear info required"
  • "Getting play video close to real time is a big key. Sometimes you might miss an event if you are doing anything less than 10 fps. (i.e. someone stealing a can of beans)"
  • "Less than 11 FPS might yield erratic motion, but more than 15 FPS consumes too much bandwidth/storage."
  • "Depending on the cameras location for more important areas or tight shots we run at 15fps. PTZs 15FPS. Large areas or less important areas 5FPS or less"

The 11 - 19 fps group is more demanding and often drive by customer requirements. Equally important, this group is strongly correlated with larger camera count deployments (we cross referenced this to average camera count deployed per integrator).

Finally, let's look at the smallest group - those choosing 20fps or greater on average:

  • "Casino and cash counting require"
  • "Unfortunately, although much less fps are enough to capture all required information, it doesn't look "sexy" for most of our customers. They want to be able to retrieve full motion video."
  • "Client defined"

The few votes and comments we received are consistent with niche demands of specific applications or customers.

Is Megapixel Impacting Frame Rates?

Integrators who use more SD cameras than MP use a modestly higher average frame rate than integrators overall. For instance, while 70% of all integrators use less than 10fps, only 50% of integrators using primarily SD cameras record an average of 10fps or less. Definitely, using MP cameras plays a role in limiting frame rate but it is partial role. While the mid point for all integrators for frame rate selection looks to be about 7-8fps, even for those who use mostly SD, the midpoint is only modestly higher at 10fps.

Conclusion

6 - 10 fps is the average frame rate used for surveillance recording. It makes a lot of sense because it provides a fairly smooth playback while minimizing storage costs which are still a real factor for the overwhelming number of deployments.

To learn more and see examples of different frame rates in action, see our Frame Rate Training report and the 30 vs 60 FPS shootout.

7 reports cite this report:

Selling 4K Cameras on Jun 21, 2016
This is a first in a new series to help integrators and manufacturers do a better job of accurately and fairly selling for and against various...
Average Frame Rate Video Surveillance 2016 on Feb 11, 2016
What is the average frame rated used in video surveillance systems? Historically, 30fps has been considered 'full' frame rate and, in the past few...
Megapixel Solar Wireless (Micropower) Examined on May 12, 2015
A fully wireless professional surveillance offering, no networking cables, no power lines. That has been the goal of Micropower for 5 years....
Secret Service Video Surveillance Scandal on Mar 27, 2015
The US Secret Service has taken a beating over the last few years. Hookers, public drunkenness and now, the newest Secret Service scandal, is...
Frame Rate Guide for Video Surveillance on Aug 07, 2014
This is the industry's most in depth guide to frame rates in video surveillance. As a precursor, you need to know the speed of objects, most...
Surveillance Statistics Survey Directory Vol 1 on Jan 03, 2012
In this report, we aggregate and present dozens of statistics about how surveillance is being used in the real world. Recently, we conducted an in...
Training: Frame Rates for IP Cameras on Apr 18, 2010
This is the industry's most in depth guide to frame rates in video surveillance. As a precursor, you need to know the speed of objects, most...
Comments : PRO Members only. Login. or Join.

Related Reports

Manufacturer Sales People Are Very Important - Statistics on Jun 26, 2017
IPVM's new integrator statistics show what sales people say regularly: Sales people are very important. From 150 integrator...
Importance of Sales To Integrators - Statistics on Jun 23, 2017
One of the top trends in the industry over the past few years has been the rise of across-the-board sales (e.g.: Hikvision Sales, Dahua Sale,...
Covert Cloud Camera Service Launching (KJB) on Jun 22, 2017
Cloud IP cameras, for consumers, has become increasingly commonplace. However, covert cameras, lag there, with few options. Now, North America's...
45 Drives 'Lowest Cost' Enterprise Storage Company Profile on Jun 21, 2017
45 Drives claims the "lowest cost per Hard Drive Slot in the industry." But who or what is '45 Drives'? What started as a product design to...
VMS UI - Light vs Dark Preferences on Jun 16, 2017
Several VMS manufacturers have the ability to choose a user interface with either a light or dark color theme. 150+ integrators told us which they...
ESX 2017 Final Show Report on Jun 16, 2017
The ESX (Electronic Security Expo) day 3 / Thursday is done and the exhibits are over. IPVM was in Nashville covering it in-depth. Below covers...
Bluebeam Revu Security Floorplan Estimation App Test on Jun 15, 2017
Bluebeam Revu is a construction design markup tool that claims it is "used by 94% of top US contractors", but what role does it have for physical...
Non-Competes Divide Integrators on Jun 12, 2017
Non-competes are controversial legal agreements that prohibit parties (typically employees) from working in a similar role or trade of their...
Panoramic: Fisheye vs Multi-Imager Usage on Jun 09, 2017
Panoramic cameras are a growing trend within video surveillance. The two main options are fisheye cameras using a single imager with an ultra-wide...
RMR Integrator Importance Statistics on Jun 08, 2017
How do integrators feel about offering RMR / recurring revenue services? For many, their business revolves around RMR, while others see no...

Most Recent Industry Reports

Biometrics Pros and Cons For Electronic Access Control on Jun 26, 2017
Biometrics has been long sought as an alternative to the security risks of cards, pins and passwords. While biometrics has improved somewhat over...
Manufacturer Sales People Are Very Important - Statistics on Jun 26, 2017
IPVM's new integrator statistics show what sales people say regularly: Sales people are very important. From 150 integrator...
No Personal Opinions About Work on Jun 26, 2017
One rising trend is the tendency for people to disclaim their statements on work related topics as their own 'opinions' or 'personal...
Importance of Sales To Integrators - Statistics on Jun 23, 2017
One of the top trends in the industry over the past few years has been the rise of across-the-board sales (e.g.: Hikvision Sales, Dahua Sale,...
Deep Learning Surveillance Startups Deep Problem on Jun 23, 2017
The undeniably good news for the video surveillance market is that we are seeing the rise of more startups than in many years. The cause of this...
Avigilon Announces RADAR-Based Presence Detector on Jun 22, 2017
RADAR is gaining momentum within physical security. Two months after Axis announced a network radar detector, Avigilon has announced a RADAR-Based...
Covert Cloud Camera Service Launching (KJB) on Jun 22, 2017
Cloud IP cameras, for consumers, has become increasingly commonplace. However, covert cameras, lag there, with few options. Now, North America's...
Uniview Low-Cost Bullet PTZ Tested on Jun 21, 2017
Uniview is offering a HD zoom bullet camera, the IPC742SR9-PZ30-32G, with an integrated pan / tilt positioner, for the price of a low-cost...
QSR Video Surveillance Best Practices on Jun 21, 2017
Fast food restaurants or QSRs (quick service restaurants), are frequent victims of crime and fraud. Because they are open late, deal with cash, and...

The world's leading video surveillance information source, IPVM provides the best reporting, testing and training for 10,000+ members globally. Dedicated to independent and objective information, we uniquely refuse any and all advertisements, sponsorship and consulting from manufacturers.

About | FAQ | Contact