Testing Vivotek Smart Stream

Author: Derek Ward, Published on Apr 18, 2014

Reduce storage costs by 30%, claims Vivotek.

Their new "Smart Stream" feature intelligently compresses video streams such that moving objects get higher quality than background, stationary parts of the scene. Here is their promo video:

How Is This Done?

Recall all surveillance video is compressed. In H.264, one can choose the level of compression from 0 to 51 (least to highest amount of compression) and each manufacturer can choose how much compression (see our IP Camera Manufacturer Compression Comparison).

Camera manufacturers typically use a single compression level for the entire scene (for example, 28). What Vivotek is doing with Smart Stream is dynamically varying the compression level (for example, a 'low' 24 for moving objects and a 'high' 36 for stationary / background ones.

This absolutely saves bandwidth compared to using a single compression level. However...

The IPVM Test of Smart Stream

Just because one manufacturer is dynamically varying compression level does not ensure that it is lower than the compression approaches of rival manufacturers.

IPVM did a test of Vivotek's first Smart Stream camera, the 3MP IR IP8371E against rivals from Avigilon, Bosch, Hikvision and Samsung. We tested for bandwidth levels, after normalizing resolution, frame rate and compression levels. Plus, we tested indoors and outdoors, day and night to measure the differences.

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Comments (6)

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