IP security cameras – Functions, benefits, and popular picks

IP security cameras – Functions, benefits, and popular picks

Surveillance has become a crucial factor, whether it is to monitor residential or commercial settings. More than six million households have installed home security systems. Today, one of the more popular surveillance systems in the market is IP security cameras, also known as network security cameras. Unlike traditional setups, these cameras can connect wirelessly to a Wi-Fi network. But there are several factors one should consider before purchasing an IP camera.

CCTV vs. IP security cameras
Traditional security networks like CCTV cameras ran on co-axial cables around the site that needed video surveillance. These analog and analog-over-digital security cameras shared the footage with a digital video recorder (DVR) via the co-axial cables. It was a complex process. But today, IP security cameras can record and transfer footage over the ethernet or Wi-Fi by connecting to a network video recorder (NVR).

Functioning of IP security cameras
An IP camera is capable of capturing footage in high definition with resolutions up to 16 megapixels (or higher) based on the model of the camera. These devices are equipped with a processing chip capable of compressing footage once a video is recorded. A higher camera resolution will use more data for each video recording. This also means that the camera will require more storage space and higher bandwidth to transmit data. One can also pick a lower-resolution camera which may take up less space for each recording.

A network security camera installation carries several benefits. A few perks include:

  • Remote access
    With modern-day IP security cameras, an authorized user can video live or pre-recorded footage on most electronic devices like laptops, tablets, smartphones, computers, and even smart televisions. They can also use the camera application to change settings, activate or deactivate the device, and share access with other individuals.
  • Two-way audio
    Some IP security cameras come with two-way audio where the authorized user can listen to the subject in the frame. Some cameras also have a built-in speaker that allows the administrator to speak to the subject. IP cameras are also known to render a much better resolution when compared to analog cameras.
  • Easy to install
    Most IP security cameras have an instruction manual that lets users plug in, register, and activate the device in a few minutes. Moreover, CCTV cameras usually require a professional to install the entire system, which may cost a lot of money. But one can pick up IP security cameras for much cheaper across several online retail stores.
  • Battery backup
    Some IP security cameras come with an independent battery backup. So in the event of a power cut, the device will still be able to record any unusual activities that transpire around the surveillance location.

Connection options
During the installation of a network security camera, an individual can choose from three types of network connectivity options.

  • Wireless network
    A wireless (Wi-Fi) network sends and receives data to a wireless router. Most smart devices, including IP security cameras in an individual’s home, can be connected via Wi-Fi. A person can view the footage by entering the IP address of the camera in a web browser. Internet service providers may also give their customers dynamic IP addresses that are changed occasionally to ensure better network security.
  • Wired network
    A wired network can connect an IP camera to the network with an ethernet cable. The installation is usually more secure than connecting to a wireless network, as there is little opportunity for interference with the signal or unauthorized access. Moreover, data transmission speeds with ethernet are smoother and more efficient than Wi-Fi.
  • Cellular network
    Cellular networks are slower than wireless and wired networks but also more convenient. Most IP security cameras are equipped with cellular transmitters, which enable authorized users to connect and view recorded footage remotely.

Popular picks
An individual will find hundreds of manufacturers that claim to make the best quality IP security cameras. However, only a few truly live up to their word. Here are a few popular options.

Reolink 4-camera NVR System (RLK8-410B4)
Available for about $360 on Reolink’s website, the camera allows customers to view the footage recorded on the NVR system or via the app on a smart device. The system comes pre-installed with a 2TB HDD capable of 24/7 recording and monitoring. Moreover, the NVR system that comes with the security cameras can also support up to eight cameras that record simultaneously. One can also install an external hard disk drive via eSATA up to 4TB for additional storage.

Eufy Solo Pan and Tilt
The Eufy Solo Pan and Tilt is an ideal option for homes. It can pan up to 360 degrees and tilt up to 96 degrees, which gives users an exceptional field of view. The camera also features an onboard Micro-SD card slot that can record videos in 2K resolution. Other features with the Eufy Solo Pan and Tilt include cellular connectivity, 2-way talk, IP64 water rating, and solar-powered functionality. In addition, one can get the security camera on Eufy’s website for about $55.

Annke NightChroma (NCD800)
This option from Annke is suitable for homeowners who wish to install a surveillance camera outdoors. The device offers a 180-degree field of view, 4K recording, and H.265+ coding that helps the camera record longer videos while consuming less bandwidth. The camera also features an IP67 water rating and is made of metal for enhanced durability. One can purchase the IP security camera for about $320 from Annke’s website.