HD Analog vs IP Tutorial 2014

Author: John Honovich, Published on Jul 11, 2014

In the past, the only way to get megapixel / HD was to use IP. Now, a crop of alternatives are emerging including SDI, CVI, TVI, 960H, to name just a few.

Here is a high level overview of how they compare:

Inside, we break down each of these 8 key factors, explaining how the 5 main options compare and contrast for each.

[Note: This tutorial was originally written in July 2014 but was substantially re-written in August 2015 to reflect improvements in HD Analog options in the past year.]

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Recorder *************

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Coax *************

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[****: **** ******** *** ********** ******* ** **** **** *** was ************* **-******* ** ****** **** ** ******* ************ ** HD ****** ******* ** *** **** ****.]

Comments (48)

SDI is essentially dead.

Does Todd know that? I guess that's why he took the red pill and partnered with Dahua. Funny, I posted essentially the same conclusion on LinkedIn and he has not responded - though he still claims HD-SDI-based HDcctv 3.0 is on the horizon <chuckle>

Sigh. For those of you who want more of the nitty gritty details / politics of the non IP HD combatants, see: HD-SDI Vs HD-CVI Vs HD-TVI Vs HDcctv?

On all others, compression is performed on the server side (e.g., recorder, encoder, video server, etc.).

Of all the 'other' ones listed that's true, but there is one general exception, StarDot Multi-Channel Long Distance Coaxial (MCLDC).

No need to defend their omission from the list; you have made it clear that the technology is not now, and is not likely to be a major force in the non-ip-mp space. I just figured that I'd save Ben the trouble of responding, as well as show him that we had not forgotten the technical aspects of his product.

Then let me include the PoE Chain IP Camera Provider if we are covering technologies with nearly zero adoption....

I think these are intellectually interesting but little more.

Then let me include the PoE Chain IP Camera Provider if we are covering technologies with nearly zero adoption....

Not necessary to mention because it is not an exception to any of your blanket statements.

Had you claimed that 'PoE is never daisy chained.', however, a dismissive footnote to it would only be viewed as being 'thorough', not as incorrect.

If you're referring to "Benn" Hernandez, he is no longer with StarDot. He moved on to a rep firm in January.

No, our Ben is, at most, a one n Ben...

Stardot spent alot of money showcasing that, to no avail. I would have bought the MCLDC but for these reasons:

-it is proprietary.

-it is not available.

-it is proprietary.

It is proprietary collection of open standards, so agreed it's still proprietary.

-it is not available.

It is available at a certain retailer you might be familiar with.

Let's not nitpick Stardot MCLDC. It's obvious has minimal to non-existence market traction and does not deserve to be debated, unless there is some new developments about it.

Stardot themselves told me it had to be Stardot camera to stardot DVR. Is this not true?

Not true. You do need a MCLDC receiver, though. Reply over here.

I just have to wonder what some of these companies are thinking. Do they really think they can differentiate themselves from one another?

It's bad enough with the primary technologies: HDcctv / HD-SDI, HDCVI, HD-TVI, etc. but when you add all of the other "HD" acronyms, do they think people just see the "HD" and aren't concerned about compatibility?

My guess is everyone is saying to themselves, "There's no winner yet. It could be me."

But I agree with you compatibility is a big issue. And for the people who get stuck with losing technologies, they are going to have real long term maintenance / expansion issues.

The big one to watch is the Dahua vs Hikvision face-off. Honestly, that should be fun :)

Given Ultra HD 4K video is available in cinema/production cameras using 6G-SDI, I wonder why it is not being used in video surveillance where resolution for SDI cameras tops out at 1080p?

4K cameras are coming.... eventually.

There's some demand but not huge (see: H.265 vs 4K Ultra HD - IP Camera Trends).

Main factors holding back 4K are marginal detail improvements (compared to 1080p), poor low light performance, poor WDR. There have been 5MP and 10MP cameras on the market for years without huge adoption. While more manufacturers offering 4K cameras will help uptake, it likely will remain a niche for the next few years.

Dr. Todd is working on 4K, though possibly only for HD-CVI..

LOL. Todd is always promising the moon. Unfortunately, he often cannot even deliver the green cheese (ie. HDcctv XR and HDcctv CX).

"The contents of the HDcctv standard, and the timing of new versions of the standard, are determined collectively by HDcctv Alliance Members."

That's the funniest statement on the link. A membership of two, Todd and Dahua...

CVI offers remote camera control and configuration 'up the wire'.

It's two way comms. So all those analog cameras that output messages to the screen on motion detection, tampering etc finally have a path to get that information back to the DVR.

Expect some level of intelligence in the cameras at some point.

Audio can also be transmitted as well.

TVI too.

CVI offers remote camera control and configuration 'up the wire'.

So all those analog cameras that output messages to the screen on motion detection, tampering etc finally have a path to get that information back to the DVR.

Wouldn't that path be best described as 'down the wire'? Are you referring to downstream out-of-band signaling?

I personally wouldn't describe it as "up the wire" or "down the wire".

I quoted the article and clarified that: "it's two way comms".

I personally wouldn't describe it as "up the wire" or "down the wire".

Ok. I don't mind at all what you call it, my petty point was only that 'remote camera control/config signals' and 'camera-side motion detection signals' travel in opposite directions;

The quote from the article about CVI offering remote config/control followed by your 'So...cameras...finally have a path.' could lead one to believe that the new 'path' is the path the 'remote control/config' takes ...

But now I understand you are not saying that...

Just added: Take the 8 question HD video quiz now and see how much you know.

In a new interview, the HDcctv only employee Executive Director has admitted that SDI is dead and that they are now focusing on Dahua CVI, noting:

"With SDI, we weren't there with convenience or price. With CVI, we have reliability, convenience, works over any composite infrastructure, and the pricing is similar too."

LOL.

There are some very telling questions and answers there:

  • Q: Which part of the standards deals with ethernet?
  • A: DVRs are highly cost-effective...
  • Q: ...so which part of your standard deals with IP?
  • A: None of it.

And check this out - all in the same answer:

  • The first technology we saw as acceptable was HD-SDI, and SDI is as reliable as composite video. It's almost as convenient too... It's cheaper than IP cameras...
  • With SDI we weren't there for convenience or price.

More:

  • Q: The video has obvious latency. If it's being sold as zero latency, it should deliver that.
  • A: Are you asserting that CVI transmission is the reason for the latency or that it's the matrix inside the DVR?

Who cares? As I've said before, latency=latency=latency.

  • Q: Why does the HDcctv Alliance certify products from its members that can't record true HD video...?
  • A: Forget recording and management.
  • Q: But what if those devices won't record HD video?
  • A: We could certify a monitor.

And:

  • In a year it should be right.

- Now where have I heard that before?

  • ...if a product has some weakness, like it's not convenient, the marketing material will say 'Convenient!'

- That describes Todd's claims to a T....

Finally, I find it highly ironic that The Devil's Advocate publishes an interview with The Devil himself :-o

Next Devil's Advocate Interview: John

I'm not so certain The Devil's Advocate isn't John. He asks the same kinds of questions John does.

I sell HD-SDI, my customers love it. The distance is an issue, and legacy RG59 causes transmissin issues on longer runs, but overall, it is HD over coax with zero latency. An the most important factor seemingly ignored in this debate: it is a television standard, just like its analog cousin. This means there is a technology "backbone" in a way. So far, all of my vendors licensed to produce CVI are limited to 720P. And the 1080P is limited to 500ft or so. I can squeeze 750 out of HD SDI with extenders. I wouldn't count it out yet. Especially with the recent price drop in equipment cost. I find new HD SDI product being released all the time. One complaint, wireless transmission is quite limited, but I have found a product suite to combat that too!

Jared, who are you getting SDI from? At what price relative to IP?

As for CVI, I believe you that your vendors have limits right now. The reality though is that CVI is literally 6 months old where SDI is 5 years. It's easy to imagine CVI rapidly filling out at the pace its expanding. SDI never had that type of growth / momentum.

I have used mixed manufacturers, multiple times, and I know they are mixed, I have visited the actual factories they are produced in. Never once had a problem with compatibility. There are differences though. Some travel farther than others. Anything over 200 ft on rg59 and I would plan for extenders. Prices are great considering they are 1080P resolution. I read license plates clearly. The main complaint I have is the light handling capabilities, but I dont create systems for customers with those kind of specific requirements either.

Jared, can you comment specifically on what manufacturers and what pricing you are receiving? It's hard to get a sense of how good or bad it is based on such few details.

OEM manufacturers, with generic equipment. But it is all the same. They all work together. Not sure why there would be any compatability issues.

Jared, I am not concerned about compatibility issues.

The big problems for SDI are:

  • There are very few, if any, name brand manufacturers pushing SDI, which limits options in the marketplace.
  • CVI's pricing is far less expensive than even generic SDI equipment and CVI is backed by one of the largest manufacturers in the world.

I am not questioning whether SDI can be made to work. The concern is that it will not be competitive against CVI.

What do you think about SDI vs CVI?

For me personally, I look at SDI as a way to breath new life into an old analog system. Or to install a small HD system with ease. It is a standard, just as analog was before. The fact that Dahua created CVI, means it will do well. But I started on the SDI train and love 1080P. Plus, I have SDI broadcast equipment for testing and viewing. I carry a 1080I 7" monitor and can check in HD the signal out the back of the camera and perfect the focus or what ever I need to do.

Then again, I have also been trying out IP Systems for a 1080P picture. But IP has its own issues/strengths...

Jared,

Are you selling HDcctv or just generic HD-SDI? If the latter, aren't you concerned about manufacturer-to-manufacturer incompatibility?

Generic, and it all works great together. Just not on long runs.

John, you know I'm a fan of yours and IPVM, but I really didn't find this article that beneficial regarding weighing IP vs non-IP (I say non-IP instead of 'Analog' because HD-SDI is digital).

Instead this article felt more like, "Why IP is awesome and non-IP sucks." which really doesn't give a fair shake on the relative strengths and weaknesses. True, IP is where everything is at and going, but that should be irrespective (or at best a footnote) to this discussion.

Don't betamax the non-IP discussion by only stating the strengths of one side, then cementing it by saying that the side you just described the strengths of is what everyone's buying.

Just my 2 cents.

"which really doesn't give a fair shake on the relative strengths and weaknesses."

Tell us what would be a fair shake. Make specific points that show this. What did we leave out?

I can't meaningfully respond because you've criticized without giving any context.

Btw, we've been extremely bullish and favorable in our coverage of HDCVI, e.g. - Testing Dahua HDCVI and Testing Q-See Analog HD Kit

John,

It just didn't feel fair and balanced. After reading your article I went to the Dahua site and read through their HDCVI stuff and compared that to other notes/articles I've authored in the past on IP vs non-IP, and it just didn't seem like the common hit points on non-IP were there, such as price, ease of install, zero latency for PTZ control and abstinence from problems that occur on a network infrastructure.

I primarily see HDCVI being strongest in low-to-mid-market (something you and I have discussed many times), and it just didn't feel like most of those points were properly represented in this particular article. Yes I'm sure the information exists on other IPVM articles, but it seems conspicuously absent from this one.

I'm not bullish or bearish about HDCVI right now, I was just trying to research it more and this particular article felt a little empty.

"It just didn't seem like the common hit points on non-IP were there, such as price."

Price wasn't there?

And I quote from the cost section above: "CVI cameras and recorders are extremely inexpensive, even compared to similar entry level IP cameras. 960H ones are similar in price to CVI, though with lower resolution and less capabilities."

I've added install simplicity above, with is fundamentally the network infrastructure problem.

As for PTZs, since there are no HD analog matrixes and remote networking viewing remains the same problem it is for IP.

That said, the chart you have at the beginning was EXCELLENT and compared and contrasted the speeds and feeds very well...it was just hard to dig deeper after that.

You're correct of course about lack of Matrix, but I can see infrastructures that deal with this in a virtual matrix, but again, I'm not talking enterprise systems here, I'm talking systems fewer than 20 cameras. That's where I think HDCVI and competing technologies might have some traction.

Yes you mentioned pricing, but you weren't very granular about it.

Generally speaking I don't comment about the format or specific content of your articles, because they're generally fair and thorough. I just felt like this one wasn't. Put another way, if I were a small business owner, I couldn't make an informed decision on IP vs non-IP from the content of this article.

"If I were a small business owner, I couldn't make an informed decision on IP vs non-IP from the content of this article."

Straw man argument.

This article does not claim to be an analysis for small business owners. It is a general technology treatment that does not address any verticals or market segments.

A straw man is used as a diversionary fallacy when one party can't argue the merits of the issue.

That's not what I'm doing.

A straw man is used as a diversionary fallacy when one party can't argue the merits of the issue.

Although a straw man can be used to divert an argument because one does not wish to argue the merits of the issue, that is not what a straw man actually is. A straw man is the restating of an opponent's viewpoint in a manner that is not accurate, before attacking this false viewpoint as if were the opponent's own. What you describe is more like a red herring.

John is contending that when you ask yourself the hypothetical question "If I were a small business owner...", that you are in effect creating a straw man, since he has not explicitly claimed that this report should be used in such a manner, and therefore the small business owner's inability to make informed decisions should have no bearing in regard to the report's quality.

All is not lost though, since John's claim of "straw man" could itself be viewed as a red herring, or at least of form of question begging, since the objection is easily overcome. To continue your argument, one would only need modify your hypothetical question from

If I were a small business owner, I couldn't make an informed decision on IP vs non-IP from the content of this article.

to

If I were about to meet with a small business owner, I couldn't make an informed recommendation on IP vs non-IP from the content of this article.

Thanks, this was a great article to help us make sense of the new alphabet soup.

Regarding ethernet over coax @ $150-400 per link, I don't know if these units have relevance to the professional environment, but the least expensive ethernet over coax (MOCA) adapters I have seen are these from TIVO (100Mbps):

https://www.tivo.com/shop/detail/moca $49.99 each end

Slightly more expensive is the Amazon.com twin pack @ $112.05/pair but maybe less expensive with Amazon prime free shipping:

http://www.amazon.com/Actiontec-Ethernet-Adapter-Service-ECB2500C/dp/B008C1JC4O/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1410450363&sr=8-1&keywords=moca+network+adapter

Would you trust your professional reputation to these units?

Thx.

I don't think this is right:

"Bandwidth is essentially 'unlimited' . Because the video is compressed (typically using H.264) in the camera, the output can be 3MP, 5MP, 10MP, 20MP or more and can easily 'fit' inside standard networking infrastructure (e.g., 100Mb Ethernet).

I think unlimited is not the correct adjetive here.

Octavio,

That's why we put 'unlimited' in quotes. We do not mean it is literally 'unlimited'. We mean it is practically unlimited because the amount of bandwidth you need even for a 12MP or 20MP camera today (given H.264 compression) is easily supported by common network infrastructure.

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Amazon is coming for ADT and all of home security. Indeed, Amazon is advertising this as, in their own words, calling home security a: Inside...
Higher Power PoE 802.3bt Ratified, Impact on Security Products Examined on Oct 12, 2018
Power over Ethernet has become one of the most popular features of many video, access, and other security products. See our PoE for IP Video...
"New Zealand Govt Uses Chinese Cameras Banned In US", Considers Security Audit on Oct 12, 2018
Newsroom NZ has issued a report: "NZ Govt uses Chinese cameras banned in US": This comes after the US federal government banned purchases of...
Mysterious Patent Troll 'Secure Cam' Targets Industry, Sues Hanwha, Hikvison, JCI, Panasonic, More on Oct 11, 2018
A company named "Secure Cam," who is actively hiding their ownership, has acquired a slew of video patents and is systematically suing video...
Unfixed Critical Vulnerability In Millions of XiongMai Devices Disclosed on Oct 10, 2018
XiongMai, one of the biggest OEMs alongside Dahua and Hikvision, has suffered a critical vulnerability impacting millions of their devices. This...

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