HD security cameras – HiDef or Megapixel ?

HD or not HD – that is the question

It’s 2010 and our industry is once again pondering the inevitable
question ‘when will IP catch on’!!??

For the past few years, experts have been predicting the demise of the
analogue camera and the true embrace of networked connected IP
cameras…….but with no-one really sticking their neck out and
stating when it will actually happen.

And this is, in part, because the industry is a wash with so many
fragmented technologies that installers and end users alike are
confused as to what is really available.

Take the latest greatest IP encoder and you are hooked on the quality
and ease of installation….then you ask what recording options are
available and you find yourself hooked into the same manufacturer to
ensure complete compatibility…….

What happened to using the Panasanyo camera with the Dedicated
Research DVR along with the Ademcobrain monitor?? Analogue, old
technology but at least compatible with each other!

Perhaps things are a changing……ONVIF is around the corner and
promises to ensure that any company that signs up has to ensure it
offers compatibility with other ONVIF contributors – we wait and

Megapixel? Whats best? We are brought up to believe that the more the
number the better the specification…..a 5megapixel camera has got to
be better than a 2megapixel camera surely? Sure, but at what expense?
You need more HDD to store it (expense) and you need a good bandwidth
network to transmit it (expense) – of course, you can scale everything
back, throttle, dual stream, encode in CIF and all the other ways of
making the good quality image smaller and faster, but is that not like
buying a Ferrari and then only ever driving it at 30mph???

HD might change all this, at least in part to start with……High
Definition….. The very name smacks of expected quality…. If you
view a HD image, you are expecting a beautiful picture…..you want to
see the blade of grass on the ground and the badly shaven face of the
Serbian footballer on ITV 1 World Cup broadcasts (not wishing to spark
controversy but great result Serbs against the Germans!)……you want
to see the beads of sweat on the brows of ageing rockers on BBC
Glastonbury……..and HD delivers just that…….

And yet…..HD is merely 720p or at best, 1080p…… A mere 2
megapixels…… Pretty much at the maximum of what a really decent
monitor can display anyway…….but HD nonetheless

We saw a sneak preview of some of Sony’s IP opinions recently – HD is
their intended marketing vehicle……they think end users understand
HD…..they know that HD is embraced in the domestic sector…..and so
they are focussing their Security products as HD in order to gain a
quicker acceptance – and we think they are absolutely right

So why do we need more pixels? Maybe we don’t……just how many more
blades of grass do we need to see? Just how many more tufts of facial
hair on those footballers? And really, do we need to see more
perspiration on those rockers? If they are there, we just need to see
them and maybe even record them……for playback later……..just
like our security cameras

HD…..maybe that will kick us toward IP quicker!

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