Which dome camera is suitable for your security needs?

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Dome cameras now come with features like video analytics and advanced digital surveillance solutions in order to give real-time alerts

By Richa Chakravarty

Saturday, June 28, 2014: With technology evolving at a fast pace, and with the transition from analogue CCTV systems to more sophisticated network-based IP video solutions, dome cameras are becoming more advanced in technology and design. These cameras have features like video analytics and advanced digital surveillance solutions incorporated in them to give real-time alerts. For example, the speed dome camera is a very highly integrated product—with pan, tilt and zoom (PTZ) systems, communication systems and camera systems.

What’s latest in the market

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A varied range of dome cameras are available in the market for consumers to choose from. Since a dome camera is a popular type of CCTV camera, and gets frequently upgraded as technology changes, different types of these cameras get launched quite often by major companies. In September 2013, Intex Technologies forayed into the security and surveillance solutions market by introducing a range of CCTV cameras, comprising dome and bullet cameras with 480-700 TVL. The 3-axes movement that’s possible in dome cameras makes it easy to adjust the angle from a wall or ceiling to capture visuals from every corner of the surroundings.

IP high speed dome cameras: These IP cameras are a combination of traditional analogue high speed cameras and basic IP camera systems. They can transmit audio-visual content and control data pretty easily. Today, high speed dome cameras are entirely electronics-based. They use either a charge coupled device (CCD) or a CCMOS active pixel sensor, and typically record over 1000 frames per second into DRAM. The images are played back slowly to enable users to study them.

In December 2013, Axis Communications expanded its AXIS Q60 PTZ dome network camera series by launching three new IP high speed dome cameras—the AXIS Q6042 with extended D1 resolution, the AXIS Q6044 with HDTV 720p, and the AXIS Q6045 with HDTV 1080p. As claimed by the company, the improvements are particularly evident with HDTV models for low-light situations, and these cameras are easy to install. Their light sensitivity is nearly three times better than the industry norm for HDTV cameras. They also support electronic image stabilisation, which reduces the effects of camera vibrations (from wind or traffic) to provide clearer, more useful video footage. In addition, they support automatic defogging, a feature that detects fog in the scene and digitally filters it out for clearer video images.

Dual streaming: High speed dome cameras have evolved a step further and now include dual streaming, which simplifies data transmission. This is a concept that enables the encoder to deliver two totally independent streams of video, separately configured for different frame rates and video resolutions. By dual streaming, encoding or recording can be done on any stream rather than the defined ones. This enables real-time selecting and encoding of the data stream, dual stream transmission, as well as storing and real-time compression and coexistence in any data stream, all at the same time.

Advanced image sensor: Dome CCTV cameras are currently equipped with image sensors that use either CCD or CMOS. A CCD circuitry is much more efficient as it uses one amplifier and an A/D converter, whereas in a CMOS chip, each pixel includes an individual amplifier and an A/D converter. This lowers the efficiency in capturing sensitive images. However, CMOS technology is much cheaper and, hence, widely used. Today, sensors are able to simultaneously capture details in bright or dark areas.

In this category, Bosch Security Systems has recently launched its 960H dome cameras with advanced image sensors. These cameras are available in the microdome form factor with fixed lens, in the minidome size with vari-focal lens, and in various infrared versions. Informs Sudhir Tiku, head, South Asia, Bosch Security Systems, “The 960H has a new class of advanced image sensors that provide the high levels of image quality needed for the PAL standard. These sensors deliver crisp, clear video at the highest resolution available for analogue systems, and also offer extraordinary performance in low light. With an increased pixel count and an image that is 30 per cent wider, every frame contains more information and more details.”

CP Plus has also recently launched a series of dome cameras with the HQIS sensor—CP-UAP-SC23CB, CP-UAP-SC23CP and CP-UAP-SC30CP—which are suitable for both outdoor and indoor applications. These cameras deliver 540 TVL horizontal high resolution images, which generate clear and detailed pictures even in low light conditions.

CP Plus has also launched three other dome cameras—CP-UAP-SY23CP, CP-UAP-SY23C and CP-UAP-SY30CP—equipped with Sony ¼ inch EXview HAD CCD II, which delivers 650TVL high resolution images, ensuring excellent pictures even under the most difficult circumstances. These dome cameras provide a 360 degree per second pan operation, which can be configured for patrolling, using the preset function. Users can easily control the lens position via a mouse or a joystick to track the object of interest and set up to 255 preset positions for patrolling.

Night vision dome cameras: Infrared (IR) or night vision dome cameras are used during the night, or in low light conditions. These cameras are also available with the PTZ facility and provide optical zooming due to which closer inspection of the desired areas is possible and a wider area can be covered.

In this space, Matrix Comsec launched its 700TVL high speed IR dome camera, Satatya CADRP700VL90SW, in September 2013. This camera covers a distance of 120-150 metres and has a 30x zooming capability. It is IP66 certified. “This camera can recognise movements very well, which ensures better security. Features like wide dynamic range (WDR), automatic gain control (AGC), digital noise reduction (DNR), auto white balance (AWB), etc, help in enhancing performance, and the array of LEDs (in the camera) help in having a clear view even at night,” shares Kaushal Kadakia, product owner, video surveillance solutions, Matrix Comsec.

Last year, Autocop expanded its SKV series, which included the SVK60IRD IR dome camera, which comes with 1/3 inch sensor, a 3.6 mm lens with resolution of 600 TVL and a low lux level of 0.05 lux. It has 20 IR LEDs, which help it illuminate a radius of 10-15 metres.

Intelligent tracking, motion analysis: Today, dome cameras can automatically track and raise alarms by relying on motion analysis. Earlier, auto tracking and motion analysis were based on the PC’s ability to read and process video data, but with digital signal processors, these cameras can be programmed to raise an alarm. “Dome cameras have in-built intelligence that helps them provide live streaming videos and edge-based analytics. They have in-built SD cards and super WDR and defogging functions. So, no manual handling or programming is required for these cameras. We have introduced more than 30 dome cameras in the last six months, with resolutions ranging from D1 to 3 MP,” informs Atulya Chandra, regional director, Honeywell Security South Asia.

How to choose a dome camera

speakersBuying a dome camera has important implications on a firm or home’s security. Hence, it is crucial to understand all the features of the cameras. Depending upon what role the dome camera is expected to play, the area being secured and the light conditions the camera is expected to operate in, the user should select the appropriate model from the wide range available.

It is important to understand the voltage of the dome cameras to be used. Dome cameras come in 12V DC, 24V AC or dual voltage types. If users plan to add a new dome camera to an existing system, they will need to match the voltage of the current system to the new camera.

I would suggest going in for an image sensor (CCD and CMOS) for good picture clarity. Also, look for minimum IR illumination levels for better visibility in the night or in no light conditions,” says Jayendra Modi, product manager, Autocop India Pvt Ltd.

Adds Kaushal Kadakia, “The user should know the features of a dome, IR dome and IR high speed dome camera to make the right choice based on individual requirements. One should also go in for the optical zoom option as, then, users can have a zoomed-in view of the desired area without compromising on the quality.”

Some important points to keep in mind while buying a dome camera are:

  • Location, whether indoors or outdoors

  • Lighting conditions

  • Area to be monitored

  • Lens type required

  • Camera mounting

  • Robust power supply

  • Proper recording solution

  • Vandal-proof camera

  • With Power over Ethernet (PoE) or DC powered

Bosch’s 960H dome camera

  • boschUltra high resolution 960H sensor

  • Horizontal resolution: 720TVL; 2.5mm fixed board lens

  • Electronic day/night operation, DNR

  • Eight programmable privacy zones

  • Motion detection

  • Discreet microdome housing and easy installation

 

Matrix’s SATATYA CADRP700VL90SW

  • matrix30x optical zoom

  • Auto-flip, 360˚ endless pan range, 0.6˚-200˚/s pan speed

  • 5˚- 90˚(auto-flip) tilt range, 0.8˚-75˚/s tilt speed

  • 220 preset positions

  • IR camera range: 120-150 m, 12 IR array lights

 

Autocop’s SV2IRD700W dome camera

  • autocopHorizontal resolution: 700 TVL

  • Lens size: 3.6 mm

  • Sensor 1/3 inch Sony Super HAD II CCD

  • IR range: 15 – 20 m (24 LEDs)

  • Minimum illumination: 0.1 Lux/F1.2 (IR ON)

  • Backlight compensation, white balance and auto AGC

 

Aditya Infotech Offers CP Plus’ CP-UAP-SC23CB

  • aditya1/4 inch high quality image sensor

  • High resolution: 540 TVL

  • Minimum illumination of 0.5 Lux/F1.6; powerful 23x optical zoom

  • Day/night (ICR), 2D-DNR, auto iris scan, auto focus, AWB, AGC, BLC

  • Max 300°/s pan speed, 360° continuous pan rotation, built-in 2/1 alarm I/O

 

Honeywell’s HIDC 1300V dome camera

  • honeywellStreaming at 60 fps at 720p

  • In-built SD card

  • Power over Ethernet

  • Edge-based analytics

  • Bi-directional audio

  • Based on ONVIF profile S (ONVIF: Open Network Video Interface Forum)

 

Intex’s IAD-56RT70 waterproof vandal-proof IR dome camera

  • intex1/3 inch Sony Super HAD II

  • CCD (Effio-E)

  • Horizontal resolution: 700TVL

  • Manual vari-focal lens: 4-9 mm

  • Easy installation, streamlined design

  • 30 LEDs, IR distance:10-30 m

 

Hi-Focus’ HC-DM100 dome camera

  • hifocus1/3 inch Sony Exmor sensor 720P

  • 1000 TVL extreme high resolution camera

  • 0.01 Lux @ F1.2, 3.6 mm fixed lens

  • Low illumination, OSD, IR cut, 3D DNR, D-WDR, digital zoom

  • Auto AES, AGC, AWB, BLC

 

Samsung Techwin’s SNP-6200RH IP dome camera

  • samsungMaximum resolution: 2M (1920×1080)

  • 16:9 full HD (1080p) resolution support

  • 4.45 ~ 89mm (20x) optical zoom, 8x digital zoom

  • H.264, MJPEG dual codec, multiple streaming

  • WDR, UPnP and face detection support

  • SD memory, bi-directional audio support

 

Axis’ Q6045-E PTZ dome camera

  • axisHDTV 1080p and 20x optical zoom

  • Outdoor-ready and Arctic temperature control

  • Vandal-resistant with shock detection feature

  • Intelligent video including highlight compensation

  • High PoE

Electronics Bazaar, South Asia’s No.1 Electronics B2B magazine

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