Testing: Ubiquiti Wireless IP Video (NanoStation)

Author: Benros Emata, Published on Dec 18, 2010

While the increasing maturity of IP cameras makes using IP wireless networks easier, the lack of inexpensive IP wireless transmission products is a barrier to expanding wireless IP video surveillance. Many offerings cost a $1,000 or more per link (see our test results of AvaLAN for an example).

In the midst of this, a 'cult' favorite among installers is growing from a manufacturer named Ubiqiuti. At least in the surveillance industry, Ubiquiti has zero marketing and about as low name recognition (consider them the anti-Firetide). However, they offer incredibly cheap wireless products designed for use with IP surveillance cameras.

We are always interested in learning about and sharing information on products that are less expensive and less known. To that end, we purchased a pair of Ubiquiti's NanoStation M5s to see for ourselves. We did a series of tests using up to 3 megapixel cameras simultaneously in both MJPEG and H.264 code connecting to a VMS system.

We think Ubiquiti is well worth considering but that key limitations should be kept in mind. Inside the PRO section, we break down our findings and concerns.

***** *** ********** ******** ** ** ******* ***** ***** ** wireless ******** ******, *** **** ** *********** ** ******** ************ products ** * ******* ** ********* ******** ** ***** ************. Many ********* **** * $*,*** ** **** *** **** (*** our**** ******* ** ********* ** *******).

** *** ***** ** ****, * '****' ******** ***** ********** is ******* **** * ************ *************. ** ***** ** *** ************ ********, ******** *** **** marketing *** ***** ** *** **** *********** (******** **** *** anti-Firetide). *******, **** ***** ********** ***** ******** ******** ******** *** use **** ** ************ *******.

** *** ****** ********** ** ******** ***** *** ******* *********** on ******** **** *** **** ********* *** **** *****. ** that ***, ** ********* * **** **********'* *********** ***** *** *** *********. ** *** * ****** ** ***** using ** ** * ********* ******* ************** ** **** ***** and *.*** **** ********** ** * *** ******.

** ***** ******** ** **** ***** *********** *** **** *** limitations ****** ** **** ** ****. ****** *** *** *******, we ***** **** *** ******** *** ********.

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

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

******** *********** ** ** ** ********** *** **** ******** *** wireless ** ***** ************ ************. ******** *** ******* *****-********* ***** transmission *** ***** $*** *** **** ******** ** **** ********* that *** ** ** $*,*** *** ****.

** ********* ******** ** **** ** **** ********* ********** ******** projects (*.*., ******, ***********, ***** ***.) **** ****** ****** ******** topologies (***, ***** *********, ***** ** *****, *** ******* *********). These *** ***** **** *** ******* ****** ****-**** *******.

****** ******** ************ **** ** ****** * **** ******** '******* class' ********, ***** **** ******* ****-**** ******* ** ********* *********** and ***** ***-***** ******* (*******, ****, ******* *********/******, ****, ***.). These ************ ******** *** *** ************ **** ** *** *******.

*******, *********** **** ** ***** **** * ***** ***** ** ******** despite ****** ******** ***** **** ******** ******. ** ******* ** important (*** ** ****** ** *** *** *** ******* **** impact ********) *** *** *** *** ********** ********* (** *****) in ***** ** *****, ****** **** ** ********* *** **** decision ** *** ********.

Key ********

**** *** *** ******** **** *** **** *** ****** ** the *******

  • ***** '*****' ********** *** ***** ******** ****** *********** **** ******** megapixel ******* ********* ****** ****
  • ** ***** ***** ***** ********* ******* ** *****, **************** ***** *********
  • **** ******** ******* ******* ** ****** *** *****
  • *****-** ******** **** **** *** ***** ** ***.*** ** ******
  • **** *** **** *****
  • **** ** ** ********* *** ******* *************, *** ******* ****** be **** ****** ***** ******
  • ****** *********** *****-***** (***** $*** * ****) ** ******* ** cameras ** **** **********

Product ********

*** ******************* **(****** $**) ****** *** *** ********** ** ******** *********:

  • ********* ******* ***** - **** ***** **** ******* ** ***** wide ********* *******
  • *** **** (********-*****/********-******) - ******* *** ****** ** ******* *** transmit ********

*** ******** ** ****** ** ****** ******* ***** **** ******:

  • ****** **- (****** $**) ******** ******* ********** *** ******** **********
  • *********** **** **- (****** $**) ******* ******* **** ******** ***** **** ******* and *********** *****
  • ****** **- (****** $**) * ***** ****-****** ***-**** *** ***** ********* applications *** ***-********** *******

*** ** ****** ** **** ****** *** ******* *** **** basic ******* *** ***** ********* ******/*********. ***** ****** ************ ** provide ******** *********** **** ** ** *** *** **** *********** - **** ***** ** **** ******** **********.

*** *********** ** ************* **** ***** ******** ** ****** **** as *** ****** **, *********** **** ** *** ****** **. (All ** ****** ****** ********* ~$** ******). *** ****** ** and ****** ** ***** *** ******** ********. ** **** **** can ** ******** ******* ***** *** ******* *** ** ******* outdoors. *** *****-*** ** **** ****** ** *** *********** ******** by *** ********** ****** ** ** ***** **** ******* ***** unit *** *******. *** *********** ** *** *********** ** **** can ** ******** ********, *** **** **** ********** *******/***** ***** on *** ******, **** ****** ** *******-****** ** *** *******/** cable **********.

Physical ********

*** *********** ** ****** ******* * *********** *** ********. ** adapter ******,******* ***.***(**** $**) ** ********* ** ***** *** ***** ** ****** 802.3af *** *****. *** **** **** ******** * *****-** ******** port ** **** * ****** *** **** ******** **** *** radio (*.*., ** ** ******). *** **** *** **** ** enbaled ** ***** *** ***********, *** ** ** *** ***.*** compliant *** ******** **** * ******* ****** ** ** *******. For ******* ***********, *** **** ** ** ********* (*** ********), but ***** ***** **** ****** ** ****** ** ******* ******* rain/splash ***.

Administration/Configuration

*** ***** ******* *** ***** ********* ******, ***** *** ** accessed ***** * ***-*******. ** **** *****, ** *********** *** key ************* *****, *** **** ***** ********** ************ ****** *** AirOS *** ***********. ** **** *** ** ********* *** *** radios ** **** * ****** ****-*** *****-**-***** ****. ** *** next ******* **'** **** *** **** **** **** ** ******* and ******* *** *********** ** ***** ** ***** ******* *** reliability.

Practical **** *** ** *****

** ********* *** ********* ********* ******* ** *** *** ** the ****:

  • * **** ***** (***)
  • * **** ***** (****)
  • * **** ***-***** (****)

** *** ***** *** ** *** **** ** **** *****'* VMS ** ******** * '****-****' ********** **** **** *******, *** other ********** *************. ****, ** **** *** **** ********* ********* compression **** (*****) ** *** * ****** ***** ** *** load *** **** ***** ** **** ** ******. **** **** the ****** *** ** ***** ********* *** **** *** ** each ***** ** * **** ********** *** *******.

** **** *****, ** ******** **** **+ **** ******** ** detectable ***** ******* ******. ** **** ****** **** ***** ** H.264, *** ******* ** **% ** **% ********* ** ********* utilization. *****, ***** *** ** ********** *********** ****** ** ***** quality ***********.

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