SightLogix's Second Generation SightSensors

By Ethan Ace, Published Nov 17, 2011, 07:00pm EST

SightLogix, a provider of specialized analytics for perimeter detection, has introduced a second generation of their SightSensor series of smart cameras with the stated goal of reducing prices to enable 'mainstream' adoption. In this update we'll take a look at the changes to their line, how mainstream the new generation may be and how they compare to competitor VideoIQ. 

Product Overview

SightLogix's overall product offering remains operationally the same. SightLogix provides video analytics tailored to detecting objects at a distance, most commonly for use in perimeter protection projects. Objects are geo-located on a map, allowing the operator to see their position in real-time. Analytic events have been integrated with a number of third-party VMSs. Users who'd like more detail may see our earlier overview of SightLogix's technology.

While the overall featureset is the same, there are some changes to the second generation.

  • Substantially Lower Pricing: Possibly the most impactful change to the second generation is its pricing, with SightLogix claiming pricing reductions of nearly 50%. Where a first-generation visible SightSensor carried an MSRP of nearly $10,000, the second generation's price has been reduced to $4,995. Thermal SightSensors start at $9,995, and range all the way up to $23,995, depending on detection range. This is still pricey for a camera, but SightLogix claims this pricing is similar to or lower than installing buried cable or fence-mounted coaxial systems for perimeter detection.
  • H.264 and ONVIF Support: Previous generation SightSensors supported only MPEG-4 encoding, and were integrated to third-party VMSs by emulating an Axis 211. ONVIF integration allows for video integration only, not analytic data. While analytics are included in the ONVIF 2.0 specifications, SightLogix has not implemented this, nor have the vast majority of VMS systems. 
  • Improved Thermal Performance: SightLogix has included the same processing found in their Clear24 thermal camera (which we overviewed earlier this year) in their next generation thermal SightSensor, which uses a 320x240 sensor. This technology is intended to increase contrast of the thermal image to improve visibility and analytic accuracy. SightLogix claims this technology may increase performance even beyond 640x480 thermal imagers with competitive analytics. SightLogix has shared this comparison image:

Obviously the image is vendor provided so take it with a grain of salt. However, if they can achieve the type of detail improvements they claim in this sample, it could make for a substantial improvement for analytics performance.

Overall Analysis

SightLogix's pricing reduction makes them a more feasible choice throughout the higher end of the professional market where large areas and critical infrastructure need to be protected - the 'mainstream' perimeter protection market. However, at $5,000+ per camera, it will still be hard to justify in smaller or less critical 'mainstream' areas where cameras at 1/3rd of the cost can effectively be used.

Cost Per Foot Metrics

Since SightLogix is predominantly focused on perimeter protection, their pricing is often broken down to a per-foot metric. This may be more easily compared to installing fence-mounted or buried cable sensors, which they compete against. SightLogix claims one of the lowest prices per foot in the industry, due to their detection ranges. Other manufactuers make similar range claims, however. Without a side-by-side shootout, we cannot validate any of these detection ranges.

 

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Visible Camera Competitive Comparison

The most likely competitor for SightLogix is VideoIQ, especially considering their announcement of a partnership with FLIR to deliver video analytics optimized for thermal imaging. These products do have a number of important functional differences:

  • SightLogix provides geo-locating features that VideoIQ does not, which may speed operator response to incidents. 
  • VideoIQ carries a wider range of detection rules, and may be used for more specific scenarios than simply object detection.
  • All VideoIQ products cited below include built-in storage, and the ability to use their VMS at no additional cost.

Pricing for each compares as follows:

  • SightLogix DS130: $4,995 MSRP (48° FOV max, at 390' detection range)
  • VideoIQ iCVR-HD: $1,945 MSRP (~33° FOV max, at 600' average detection range)

The above FOVs are from SightLogix's specifications, and VideoIQ's design info. We would estimate that increasing the field of view of the iCVR-HD would decrease its range to roughly the same angle as the SightSensor. Note that all detection ranges given are as specified. We have not tested these ranges.

Given the above, VideoIQ's HD model has some advantages over the SightSensor. Most obviously, VideoIQ's MSRP is less than half the price. Even if a few more cameras are needed to cover the same area, VideoIQ would likely still be more cost effective. Also, since it is HD resolution, users may capture identification-quality video further from the camera, as opposed to the VGA resolution SightSensor. 

Thermal SightSensor Comparison

The Thermal SightSensor is more difficult to compare to VideoIQ. Users would need both a VideoIQ/FLIR thermal analytics processor, in addition to an analog thermal camera. With such a wide variety of lens and resolution combinations available, pricing may vary greatly. The following are our best guesses at FLIR cameras with similar fields of view, along with the VideoIQ processor.

  • SightLogix Thermal SightSensor: $9,995-$23,995 MSRP (48°-7° FOV, 295'-2,035' detection range)
  • FLIR SR Series 320x240 Camera + Thermal Analytic Processor: $5,035-$18,804 MSRP (48°-4° FOV)
  • FLIR SR Series 640x480 Camera + Thermal Analytic Processor: $11,996-$27,186 MSRP (45°-6° FOV)

Using 320x240 resolution imagers, SightLogix prices out substantially higher than a FLIR camera with VideoIQ processor. Against 640x480 resolution FLIR cameras, they have a definite pricing advantage. If SightLogix's claims that their thermal analytics processing provides performance similar to a 640x480 resolution on a 320x240 imager, they may have a competitive advantage.

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