Testing Arecont's 20MP SurroundVideo Camera

Author: John Honovich, Published on Nov 29, 2011

Should you be using 20MP cameras? Once considered science fiction, 20 Megapixel cameras are now a reality for the video surveillance industry. This year, Arecont Vision announced a 20MP camera. That camera is now shipping so we bought a unit to find out how well it worked and what hidden problems it had.

Arecont Vision 20MP Camera

Arecont Vision is making a number of audacious claims for this 20MP camera including that it "can replace up to 65 conventional cameras" and that "one megapixel camera can view an entire parking lot ... taking the place of several PTZ cameras." Arecont has also added "binning for increased security."

Equally importantly, the Arecont camera is cheap. On a per pixel basis, it's actually cheaper than the $100 HD camera from Ubiquiti and that's saying something. Plus, like other Arecont cameras, it is designed to work with leading 3rd party VMS systems. Finally, it's H.264, rare for a camera with such high resolution.

Clearly, the Arecont 20MP has a lot of potential.

On the other hand, Arecont Vision was recently and overwhelmingly selected as the IP camera integrators have had the worst experience using. As such, Arecont cameras come with significant risk.

Our Test

We did a series of tests to better understand the tradeoffs and competitive positioning of the Arecont 20MP camera, including:

  • AV 20MP vs PTZ - We took an SD PTZ and compared its maximum optical zoom to the Arecont's maximum digital zoom to see who had the better range.
  • AV 20MP vs Super Wide Angle Lens - We took a 1080p camera and a super wide angle lens to see what camera provide better usability and image quality.
  • AV 20MP vs (4) 1.3MP cameras - We matched up a 1.3MP camera against 1 of the 20MP imagers to see how much additional image details the Arecont was able to capture.
  • Low Light Performance vs MP/HD cameras - We examined how much better or worse the 20MP AV camera was compared to 'regular' Megapixel cameras.

Bottom line, our test results show the 20MP AV has a number of significant shortcomings and does not come close to Arecont's marketing claims. However, the results also show that the camera does have a potential complimentary role in video surveillance applications.

****** *** ** ***** **** *******? **** ********** ******* *******, 20 ********* ******* *** *** * ******* *** *** ***** surveillance ********. **** ****, ******* *************** * **** ******. **** ****** ** *** ******** ** ** ****** * unit ** **** *** *** **** ** ****** *** **** hidden ******** ** ***.

Arecont ****** **** ******

******* ****** ** ****** * ****** ** ********* ****** *** this **** ****** ********* **** ** "*** ******* ** ** 65 ************ *******" *** **** "*** ********* ****** *** **** an ****** ******* *** ... ****** *** ***** ** ******* PTZ *******." ******* *** **** ***** "******* *** ********* ********."

******* ***********, *** ******* ****** ** *****. ** * *** pixel *****, **'* ******** ******* **** ***$*** ** ****** **** ******** *** ****'* ****** *********. ****, **** ***** ******* *******, ** is ******** ** **** **** ******* *** ***** *** *******. Finally, **'* *.***, **** *** * ****** **** **** **** resolution.

*******, *** ******* **** *** * *** ** *********.

** *** ***** ****, ******* ****** *** ******** ***************** ******** ** *** ** ****** *********** **** *** *** worst ********** *****. ** ****, ******* ******* **** **** *********** ****.

Our ****

** *** * ****** ** ***** ** ****** ********** *** tradeoffs *** *********** *********** ** *** ******* **** ******, *********:

  • ** **** ** *** - ** **** ** ** *** and ******** *** ******* ******* **** ** *** *******'* ******* digital **** ** *** *** *** *** ****** *****.
  • ** **** ** ***** **** ***** **** - ** **** a ***** ****** *** * ***** **** ***** **** ** see **** ****** ******* ****** ********* *** ***** *******.
  • ** **** ** (*) *.*** ******* - ** ******* ** a *.*** ****** ******* * ** *** **** ******* ** see *** **** ********** ***** ******* *** ******* *** **** to *******.
  • *** ***** *********** ** **/** ******* - ** ******** *** much ****** ** ***** *** **** ** ****** *** ******** to '*******' ********* *******.

****** ****, *** **** ******* **** *** **** ** *** a ****** ** *********** ************ *** **** *** **** ***** to *******'* ********* ******. *******, *** ******* **** **** **** the ****** **** **** * ********* ************* **** ** ***** surveillance ************.

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

Key ********

**** *** *** **** ********* ******* ** ******* **** ***** testing:

  • *** ***** *********** *** ***, **** **** ******* ****** **. ******* ** ******* **** minimally ********* ***** *******. *******, ******* *** ************* ****** ******* and ******** ***** ****.
  • ********* **** *.*** ******* *** ********. **** ******** ** * *.*** **** *** **** *** as *** ** *** **** ** ******* (*.*., ** *******), the **** ** ****** ******* ******** **** ******* *** ********** so (****** ****** *****). **** ***, ** ******, ****** ** the *.*** ******'* *** ******* ***** ****.
  • ***** ******* ******** ** *** **** ** *** *** ******** to * ***** **** ***** ****** * ***** ******. *******, ***** *** **** ** ***** up * *********** ***** ***** ******** ** * *** * camera **** * ***** **** ***** ****, *** **** ** was **** ********** ** ******* *** *******.
  • ** ********* ****** ** *** ******** ************ **** ***** *********** ********* ******* *** **** **. **** ** **** **** though ** **** *** *** ****** *****. ** ** **** the *** ****** ***** **** **** ***** *** *** ******, the *** ********* ***** ** **** *******.
  • ***** **** *** **** *** **** **** ***** ********* ***** *.**** ****** *** ***, **** lower **** *** ********* *.****. ***** **** ***** **** *** much ****** (***** *****) *** **** *** ****** ** * 75% ********* ** **********.
  • *** ***** *********** ** **** *********** **** *************** ******* ******* ** *** ** ****'* *** ** *******. By *******, **** ********* ** ***** ****, ********** ** ******* by **% ***** *** ***** ********** ** *** ****** ******** and ************ **********. *** *******, ***** ******** *** ******** ** handle ****.
  • ***/***** ******* *** *** ******* *** ** ** ******** ********. *** * ****, **** is *** * ******* *** *** ********** ***, **** ** a **** *****. ** **** *** ********** ******* **** ** a ******** ******* **** *** ****** ** ****** * **** of ******* *** ********. ****: ** ********* **** ******* **** our ****** *** ** *** ****** ********** ******** ** ** the **** [*****].
  • ******* ************ **** ************* *** *****. ** ********** ****** *** **** **** ******* as ********** ** *** **** ** ** ******** *******.

Advantages *** *************

***'* ***** ***** **** **** ** *** ** **** ********** of *** ******:

  • ******** ********** - *** **** ****** ** ****** ***** **** compared ** * ****** ****** **** ******. **** ***** ** quite *********** ********** ***** ** ****** * *******. ** ********, mounting * ** * ******* **** ** *** **** **** could **** **** ** **** *** ********** ** ** **** being ******.
  • ******* *** ******** - **** *** *******, **** ** ***** and *********, **** ******* * ****** ****** ******* *** *** 20MP ** ****** **** ****** ** ******** ****** *** *** as * ******** *******. **** *** **** $*** - $*** (3 *** ********) *** *** ******* **** ******* ** **** manner.
  • ******* ************ **** *** **** - ******* *** ******* *** all ***-********* ****** * ****** *******/********, ** ** **** ******* to ******* **** * ******* ** * ****** *****.
  • ******* ************** ***** - ********** ******* *** ****** ***** ***** can **** * *** ******* *******.
  • ******* ****** ***** - * ****** **** ** ****** ** cheaper **** ****** (*) *** ******* - **** **** *******. This ***** **** * *** ******* **** ** ******* *****.

*** ******** ***** ********** ********* ** ** *** ***** **** is ******* ** ********* *** *********** ******* ******* ** ********* poles. *** ****** ********* *** ******* ** ********* ********* ** to *** ******* ***** ** ********* ** *******. ***** **** resolution ******* ** *** ********* **** ****. ******, **** *** actually ****** ******** ******* **** ****** ** ******* ********** **** a ****** ****.

***, ***'* ** ** *** ************* ** ***** **** *** 20MP ** ******:

  • *** ***** **** ***********: **** ****** *** ********* *** ** used ******** ** ** ***** **** *** *** **** **** lit. *** *** *** * **** ***** ** ** ***** light *********** *** **** ** ***** ** *** $***+ (******** you *** ***** ** ***** *** *** *******) *** **** create ******* / ***** ** ***** ****** (************ ** *** near *****, *** **** ** *** *** *****).
  • *** ***** ****: ** * - ****, **** ** ********* low. ***** ***** **** ** ********* ** **********, ***** ***** these *** *** * **** *** *** * ******** ** most *****.
  • ***** ***** / ***** ******: ** *** **** ** *** something ******* ****, *** ****** ****** ** *** ***** ****** do **** ********* ******. *********, ** *** **** ** *** details ** ****** ** ********, *** *** ****** **** *** camera ** ***** ** ** ** ****.
  • ****** *****: ******* *** **** ** ***** *** ****, ** will ***** ***** **** *** *** ******** *** ***'* ************ use. ** **** ***, *** ***** **** **** * ***** MP ******* ***** ** *** ***** ** ** * ****** job ** * ***** ****.

***************

******* ** *** *** *** ***** ***********, **** ******'* **** fit ** *** ****** ************ **** ********** ********** ********. ******* of *** **** *** ***** ****, **** ******'* **** *** is ** ********** ******** **** **** *********** *********** ************ ******* covering *** *****. ** *** *** **** ****** ** **** useful ** ****** ********* * *** **** *** ***** ****** overview ** * ***** **** ** *********** **** ******* ** the ******** *** ** **** *********.

** ** *** ********* ***** **** ****** ** * *** replacement *** ** *** ******* ***** (******** ** *** ******* zoom), **** *** ***** *********** *** *** ***** ****. *******, we ** ******* ** ***** * **** ********** ** **** providing * ******** ****** ** * ***** (** ***** ****** the ***).

** ** *** ********* ***** **** ****** ** * *********** for ******** ***** ******* ****** *** **** ******* ******** ** put ******** ***** ******* ** * ****** **** *** *** handle *** *** ***** *** ***** **** ******.

*** ***** ******* * *** ** *** ********, ** ********* considering ********** *** ********* * *********** ****** **** ***** ***********. ***** *** *** has **% **** ******, **** ********** **** *** **** * big ********* ********** **** ****** *** *** **** ********** ****** have *** **** *****. *******, *** *** *** * ****** maximum ***** **** (****'* ** *.* ** *.* *** *** 20MP) ***, ** ***** *******, ****** *** ***** *********** **** the **** *******. *******, *** *** ******* ***** * *** hundred ******* **** (~$**** ******** ~$**** ****** *** *** ****).

*******, **** **** ** ***** ************ *** ******* ** **** camera ** **** ********* ***. ******* ** *** ******* ****, just ******* * *** ******** ******* ******* ********* **** *** guarantee **** **** ******* **** ******** ****** *** *** ******* binning ****.

Physical *****

*** ***** ***** ******* *** ******** ***** ** *** ******* SurroundView ******. ** ***** *******, ******* *** **** *********** (*) adjusting *** ***** *** (*) ***** ***** ** ********** ************* during *******.

Configuration *** ***

** **** *****, ** **** ** (*) *********** ** *** to ******* *** ** **** ** * *** *** (*) the ****** ** *** ******* **** ** *** ***********:

Low ***** ***********

***'* ***** **** *** ***** ** **** **** *.* ***. As ** ** ** *** *** ***** ****, ** ********** the ******* ***** *** *** ******* ** */*** ** ** cameras ***** '*****' **** * ****** ********.

*** ********** ***** **** **** *** *.*** **** *** ******* produce **** ******* *** **** *** **** ******* *** *** 4MP **** *** ****** ***** *****. ** ** ********* ** remind **** **** *** **** ******* ** **** ** ** (4) *** ******* *** **** *** *** ***** *********** ** roughly ********** ** *** ******* *********.

** *.* ***, ** *** *** ****** ** *** ****** was ** ******* **** (*.*** *** ******) ** *** (*** per ******). **** **** **** ***** *****.

***, ** *** ***** *****, ** **** *** ******* ** a * *** ****. *** *.*** ******* *** **** *********** details *** *** ****** ********** ******* ** *** ***** **** show *** ****** ********** *** ***** *** ******* ** *** subject.

*** ***'* **** ***** ** *** ******* ** * ***. The **** ******* ** ******* ********* ** **** **** ** the ***** ******* *** **** ******* ** ***** ****** ****.

*** ***** ***** ***** **** **** ******* ** ****** **, the ***** ******* ** **** ******** ********. ** *** **** closely ** *** *** *****, *** ******* ** (*.* ** per ******) ******* *** **** ******* ***** **** ******* *** (5MP *** ******). *******, *** *** ******** ** **** ********* consumption ******* **% **** ***/* ** *** **/* ***** ***** rate ****** ** ***% (**** ~**** ** ~*****). ******* ** definitely ***** ***** *** **** *** **** *** ***** ******* or '**********' ******** ***** ** * **** *.* ** ******.

***** *** *** ******* **** * ***, * ***** ***** with ****** *********** *****. **** ** *** ***** ***** ***** the ******* **** ***** * ****** ***** *** ***** *****. The ******* ** ***** ****** **** ** *** *.*** ****** but *** ***** ** ******* ******.

20MP ** *** ******

*** ********* ******** ** ***** *******, ********* *** ******* **** versus **** ** ****** ** ***** ** ******* *****. ** a ******* ** ******* ** *** *** ****, *** ***** camera, ********** ** *** ********** *** ** ********* ** ********* the ********* *******.

*** ***** ***** *** ************, *** *** *****, **** * spot ***** *** **** **** **** ** **** ** **** in **.

*** **** ***** *****, ** *** ****, ** ******* **** for *** *** *** * ******* **** *** *** **** AV ******. ***** *** *** ***** *** ******* ****** ** the ****, *** **** ********* ** *** ** **** ***** is *********.

** ******** **** ******* *** * ***** ******* ***** *** feet **** ** *** ***** **** ** *** ****** ***** zooming **** *** ***** ********* ** *** *** ***** *****.

** *** ***** ***** ****, ** *** ****, *** ********* zoomed *** ******* *** ******* **** **** ****** ******* *****, on *** *****, *** **** ** **** ***** ** ******* of *** *******'* *******.

20MP ** ***** **** ***** ****

****, ** **** * **** ** ***** *** **** ****** a ***** ***** ****** **** * ***** ***** **** ***** lens. ** *** ***** ***** ************, *** *****/***** ***** ******** about */**** ** *** ***** *** ** *** **** *******. The **** ******* *** ** ********* ** ***** ******** ****. However, *** *****/***** ** ********* ** * ****** **** ****** the *** *** ** ****** ** *** / **** **** the ******* ***** ** ********** ****** * ********** *****/*** *****.

**** ***********, ** *** ***** ***** ***** *** **** ******* captures *** ******* ****** **** *** ***** ***** **** *** Theia ****. **** ** ******* * ****** ** *** *******'* greater **********. *******, *** ****** *** ** **** ********** **** AV ****** **** ***** * **** ******* ******* *** ************ adjust *** ******** *** ********* ******** ** *** *** ****** FoV.

***** ***** ********* ******* ****** ** **** ** **** **** comparing **** ***** ****** ** ******* *******:

  • * ***** ****** **** ******* **** ****** *** ***** *********** than *** **** **.
  • *** ***** **** ** *** ***** ****** ** *** ****** than *** **** **.
  • * ***** ****** **** * ***** **** ** $*** ** more **** ********* **** *** **** **.

***** *** ********* ********** *** ************* **** *** **** **** so **'* *** **** ** ****** *** *** ** ****** or ***** **** *** *****.

20MP ** (*) *.*** *******

***** *** **** ******* ** ********* ** (*) *** *******, we ****** ** *** *** **** ** ** *********** **** provided ******* *******, ********** ** *******. ** *** ********* *****, we **** *.*** ******* *** ******* ** ***** *** (** degrees) **** *** ** *** * ******* *******.

*** ***** ***** *****, ** ** *** ***** ** * 10 **** **** ***, **** **** ****** ******** (*** ***) shows ******** *** ***** ********* *** *** **** ** ******. The ******* ********** ** ***** ** *** ***** ** ******** that *** **** ** ******* **** ****** *** **** ********.

 

****, ** **** ** *** **** ***** *** ******** **** a ***** *******. *** * ******* ******* *********** *** **** level ** *******. *******, **** ** ********* * ****** ** the ****** *** ***** ********* *********** ******* ******* ** ******* resolutions.

** ****** ********** **** ***** *********** ** ********* ***** ********. In *** ***** *****, *** ******* ** ***** *** **** from *** ****** (** *** **** **** **** *** *** PTZ **********). ***** *** *.*** **** ******** * **** ** a ******, *** **** ** ***** * ***** ******* ** the *******. **'* *** ***% ****** *** ** ** ******.

*******, ****'* ******* ******* ** ** ************ ***** *** **** away **** *** *******. **** *** *** ** *********** ** less ********** ****** *** **** ** ***** ******** ******** **** details. **** ***** *** ******* ******** *** ** ******* **** the ********* *** ********** *** *********** **********.

Frame **** **********

*******, ** **** ****** ****** ***** *** ******* ******* *****, frame **** ****** ** ******* ***** *.* ** ****. **** is ******** ** *.**** ********* ** ******* ****** (*********** ** is ****** ** '** ** *.****'). *** *** *** *** yourself ** ******** *** ***** ******* ** ******* ***** **** *** ********* ******** ***** **** **** ******* ******* ** ************

Login to read this IPVM report.
Why do I need to log in?
IPVM conducts unique testing and research funded by member's payments enabling us to offer the most independent, accurate and in-depth information.

Related Reports

Avigilon 'Blue' Cloud Entry Examined on Sep 19, 2017
Avigilon is moving to the cloud. The company announced their Avigilon Blue platform, designed to be a web-managed surveillance system, utilizing...
Genetec Launches Community Connect Examined on Sep 14, 2017
Genetec has done best in large-scale, enterprise systems and relatively worse in smaller systems such as SMB. Now, Genetec is launching...
Geovision Doorstation Tested (CS1320) on Sep 12, 2017
Geovision has released the GV-CS1320 door station, priced at a fraction of others, with additional bells and whistles like a built in card reader,...
Axis vs Sony Super Size Shootout (Q1659 vs SNC-VB770) on Sep 11, 2017
Super low light, super sized sensor cameras are a growing trend. In the past year, 2 of the most notable entrants for these IP cameras have been...
October Camera Course on Sep 07, 2017
Learn video surveillance and get certified. IPVM provides live online classes, recorded videos, personal help, cutting edge education and...
DoorBird D101 Tested Vs Ring and Axis on Sep 01, 2017
Video doorbells are a big growth market, with Ring, in particular gaining a lot of attention on the consumer side and Axis making a push on the...
Favorite SMB Recorder Manufacturers 2017 on Aug 28, 2017
Low cost cameras have been a major force in the small to medium business (SMB) market (as our 2015 SMB favorites and 2017 SMB camera favorites)...
Hikvision VMS Password Recovery Vulnerability on Aug 28, 2017
Hikvision iVMS-4200 suffers from a vulnerability that allows anyone local, without authentication, to generate a code that Hikvision will respond...
Camera Application Selection Guide 2017 on Aug 23, 2017
Entrances, hallways, rooms and parking lots are perhaps the 4 most common areas where surveillance is deployed. But what is the best type of camera...
FLIR Restructures Security Division on Aug 22, 2017
FLIR's goal was once to have a single end-to-end security solution. However, FLIR's Security business unit has been struggling, with several areas...

Most Recent Industry Reports

Reseting IP Cameras - 30 Manufacturer Directory on Sep 22, 2017
Every camera has a reset button (well, almost) but it is not always clear what these buttons do, how long they need to be held, what settings they...
80+ OEMs Verified Vulnerable To Hikvision Backdoor on Sep 22, 2017
Over 80 Hikvision OEM partners, including ADI, Interlogix, LTS, and Northern Video, have been verified as having products vulnerable to the...
Genetec Launches Cloud Access Control (Synergis SaaS) on Sep 21, 2017
Genetec's cloud everything expansion continues, with their announcement of Synergis SaaS edition, joining their cloud video offering Stratocast,...
Genetec CEO Warns Against Insider Threats on Sep 21, 2017
With Dahua and Hikvision cybersecurity issues becoming indisputable, a new counter has emerged. Just put them behind a firewall, buy cheap...
New IPVM Calculator V3 Released on Sep 20, 2017
The New IPVM Calculator V3 is released. An entirely new architecture delivers the following benefits: Turbo The calculator is now ~50% faster in...
Automatic Door Operators For Access Tutorial on Sep 20, 2017
Opening and closing doors might sound simple, but it takes a high-tech piece of door hardware to pull it off. Integrating automatic door operators...
'Clowns' Allege Ubiquiti 'Completely Fraudulent' on Sep 20, 2017
A short seller has alleged Ubiquiti is 'completely fraudulent'. Ubiquiti's CEO has responded calling them 'clowns'. Here is the short...
Avigilon 'Blue' Cloud Entry Examined on Sep 19, 2017
Avigilon is moving to the cloud. The company announced their Avigilon Blue platform, designed to be a web-managed surveillance system, utilizing...
HID Buys Mercury Security on Sep 19, 2017
One of the biggest access control deals in years. Mercury Security, the most widely used access hardware OEM, and partner to 20+ manufacturers,...
Hikvision Backdoor Exploit on Sep 18, 2017
Full disclosure to the Hikvision backdoor has been released, allowing easy exploit of vulnerable Hikvision IP cameras. As the researcher, Monte...

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