Is Your Campus Ready for IP Video?

Over the past eight years, surveillance technology options have gone from a few simple choices between camera manufacturers, camera types, lens and how many tapes were needed to more complex issues such as choosing between IP Video and HDcctv. And with the technological world constantly changing around us, it is sometimes difficult to make any long-term decisions. Who knows when the next big thing will come out, making your video equipment obsolete. But that’s another topic all together. Today, we are concerned with confidently choosing between the two video options currently available, IP Video or HDcctv, for your campus?

This article from CampusSafetyMagazine.com breaks down the argument.

The entire debate comes down to one overarching topic – video quality. With this idea in mind, there are two key questions that must be addressed. First, is there a large enough quantity of high quality video data to complete an investigation that would stand up in court, should it come to that? Secondly, is there enough high quality video available to support business or operational processes? The answer to the first questions is a resounding “yes” from both IP and HDcctv. The second question is a little less cut and dry. The answer depends largely on how the video will be viewed. If the images will be viewed from a centralized control room, either solution works. However, if the videos are to be viewed from many locations, IP may have the edge.

Still, there are several factors that should be looked at before making a final decision.

  1. Stay or leave – How long is your institution going to stay in the facility? If it is short-term (three-five years), using existing coaxial infrastructure and HDcctv is an economic and smart business choice. If it is five years or longer, balance IP against HDcctv. Remember to determine how smart your video system to be.
  2. Expanding or contracting – Is the campus expanding its business; will it be expanding at the existing site or looking for a new one? You don’t want to invest in an expensive network infrastructure if you are not planning to stay for a while.
  3. Lease or own – If your campus leases its facility, what is the length of the lease and do you have plans of staying beyond the term of the lease? If you own the building, a longer term investment in network infrastructure may be the better investment over time; certainly from a maintenance and expansion perspective.
  4. Size of building – Basically, does the facility have a big or small footprint? The bigger the building, the more I start looking at network infrastructure (IP) if campus stakeholders plan on staying and growing at this facility. Compare the future addition of cameras 800 feet away on coax, or 150 feet away with Cat-5 to the nearest network switch.
  5. Lighting – How good is it in the areas you want surveillance? Adding lighting is not inexpensive and is more of a factor (generally) with IP video than with HDcctv products. With IP video, poor existing lighting impacts bandwidth usage due to noise, quality and storage requirements. The right IR solution can help; however, what is the impact on implementation and operational costs?
  6. Ongoing costs – Consider what your ownership costs are and what it is going to cost to maintain a solution. Will the campus participate in the ongoing service of the system? With IP solutions, that is a real possibility. If you choose HDcctv because of existing coax wiring, you better have end-of-life DVRs because they will need to be replaced.
  7. Budget – What is the budget range for the project, and what is the expected payback period? This final qualifier is in many ways the most important. Don’t try and solve a $500 problem with a $10,000 solution.

So do your research before jumping into bed with either technology. For any questions on IP Video versus HDcctv, simply contact ARK Systems at 1-800-995-0189 or click here today.

This entry was posted on Thursday, June 9th, 2011 at 3:21 pm. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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