What Should We Know Before Buying A CCTV?

October 12, 2021


What to look for when buying CCTV systems?These systems have witnessed considerable evolution over the last few years. Here are some aspects that you should keep in mind before making a decision.

a.     Inbuilt Slot For SD Cards

Before you opt for a CCTV camera with recording features, you should consider whether the device comes with an inbuilt SD card slot. Many cameras are today equipped with micro SD slots which can hold memory cards with varying capacities including 64 GB, 32 GB or even 128 GB. Many CCTV cameras can still be upgraded to 128 GB as well. However, there are comparatively affordable CCTV cameras without internal storage facilities while depending upon the DVR surveillance hard disk.

b.     Tilt/Pan Features

While you should know how much CCTV installation costs, bear in mind that contemporary cameras may vertically or horizontally rotate for covering a massive space. The maximum angle which rotates horizontally is known as Pan and the vertical angle is called tilt. Some of the best cameras may ensure tilt and pan attributes up to 90 and 355 degrees respectively.

c.      Quality of Images

The best cameras usually churn out videos with 1080p and 720p resolution. The higher your resolution, the better your image quality. If you possess a DVR with ample internal storage (TB), purchasing a camera with high resolution is always a good idea. In-built storage facilities for cameras will get filled up and many cameras have overwrite functions which lead to micro SDs automatically getting erased to continue recording. This may lead to recordings getting lost in the future. A 1 MP camera will take up roughly 38 GB of data space for an entire day.

d.     Motion/Audio Sensors

Motion sensors are a major component for CCTV cameras. If you were wondering what to look for when buying CCTV systems, you should adopt a futuristic outlook. With audio and motion sensors, these cameras help in alerting people about unique movements/sounds and also through dispatching notifications on mobile apps.

e.     Installation

Do you know how much CCTV installation costs? Figure this out beforehand. Wireless cameras are easy to set up since they do not come with cables. The installation is dependent upon mounting and proper positioning. With proper tilt/pan attributes, CCTV cameras may not need exact/accurate placement and can be put over a wardrobe or table.

f.       Video Chat Capabilities

Some cameras have in-built microphones which enable seamless communication (two-way). This is helpful for those who wish to engage in video chats.

g.     Waterproof feature

Waterproofing is very important for CCTV cameras that will be used outdoors.

h.     Available accessories

Prior to choosing your camera, check all the information about the contents of the box and other accessories. Look for handy items like cables, power screws, mounting stand and the power adaptor. The latter is often unavailable with cheaper cameras.

i.       Infra-red LEDs

These are tiny bulbs positioned on the sides of lenses, offering infra-red light during night time. The higher the count, the better your nighttime recordings will be.

j.       Maximum camera range

The maximum range will depend upon the focal length of your lens and also the image sensor’s size. The higher this range, the clearer you will find objects that have been snapped at a distance. High range is crucial for CCTV cameras that are used outdoors.

k.     Hotspot and offline compatibility

Inbuilt hotspot helps in ensuring swift access to live streaming on a smartphone without requiring Wi-Fi connectivity. Yet, this functions within a restricted distance from the CCTV camera. You can quickly identify these products since they come with mounted antennas. This is a handy attribute for CCTVs, especially those in stores and mall outlets.

l.       Links to current DVR

Some companies only produce and retail cameras as a component within the overall setup. They only have compatibility with their own DVRs. Check for compatibility with your current DVR while buying a camera.

m.  Seller verification

Check out whether you are purchasing the CCTV camera from a legitimate and verified dealership or brand. Check whether everything shown is accurate and whether the entity is legally authorized to sell or not.

n.     Indoor or Outdoor cameras

The former suit homes and offices owing to their compact dimensions and dome-esque shape. The latter are ideal for lawns, markets, outside stalls, roads and even airports. They have zoom, pan and tilt features.

o.     Wireless or wired functionality

Wired cameras have lower prices and are linked via cables to DVR systems. They are more reliable although wireless CCTVs are easier to set up and shift to other places. However, a fast internet connection is a must in this case.

p.     Warranty & Pricing

A good camera should have a warranty for a year at least while some may have warranties going up to 3 or more years as well.This will help you understand the requirements and information you should know before investing in a CCTV  camera. 

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