Testing Cisco SMB Software and PTZ Camera (PVC300)

Author: John Honovich, Published on Jul 03, 2009

This report examines and shows the abilities and performance of key products in Cisco's emerging Small Business Video Surveillance product line. Specially, we test their IP video surveillance software and their PTZ camera (the PVC-300). For background information, see our recent Cisco SMB product overview and competitive comparison report.

Our key findings from the SMB Video Surveillance software are:

  • The software is basic - good if you want to view, record and export video but not if you are trying to do sophisticated security monitoring.
  • Ensuring recording continues over a long period of time can be problematic.
  • Remote viewing is problematic, if not impossible for most users.

Our key findings from the Cisco's PTZ PVC-300 are:
  • The camera is simple to set up for indoor use.
  • Video quality suffered significantly when viewing bright areas (though indoor/controlled lighting was better).
  • The 2.6 zoom can only cover a small area and should not be expected to monitor large parking lots or outdoor areas.

[Note: As always, the test was not paid by the vendor. They loaned me a camera and provided technical support.]

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