CCTV security cameras, otherwise known as closed-circuit television, are a system of video feeds within a closed system available only to authorized users. Since their origin in the mid-20th century, CCTV cameras have evolved to offer high frame rates, allowing a user to follow the movement of someone on camera. Additionally, high resolution allows for full-color feeds and incredibly detailed pictures as well as night vision capabilities. There are a range of CCTV camera types and specifications on the market.
How to Know What to Look For in a CCTV Camera
Deciding which surveillance cameras will work best in a particular environment is easiest when the advantages and disadvantages of each camera are known. When comparing camera types and prices, keep the following 3 factors in mind.
- Image clarity and quality- Fit cameras to security needs. Cheaper options might be the right choice if high resolution footage isn’t an important factor for a user. Similarly, if the clarity is necessary, many cameras are fitted with HD capabilities and night vision.
- Field of vision- The area being monitored will likely be one of the easiest ways to determine which camera will best suit that environment. A narrow or wide field of vision is one of the first questions a user should consider.
- Usage- Will the camera be used indoors or outdoors? Should it act as a visual deterrent or be discreet? What are the needed capabilities due to the area’s light conditions? These are all things to keep in mind when selecting the right camera.
1) Bullet Cameras
Bullet cameras are one of the two most common CCTV camera types. They have a long cylindrical shape, giving them their name and a distinctive look. This look is recognizable to nearly everyone and thus acts as a deterrent to unwanted individuals. If security cameras are visible, the hope is criminals and intruders go elsewhere instead. That being said, bullet cameras are more prone to vandalism because of their obvious look. Additionally, the shape of the camera is ideal for focusing on a fixed field, such as an entry or exit, but requires multiple cameras if a user needs to see multiple fixed views. Bullet cameras are easily mountable and can work indoors or outdoors. They feature a small lip on the end of the camera that adds weather protection and reduces glare.
2) Dome Cameras
The second most common CCTV camera type is the dome camera. Similar to the bullet camera, dome cameras have a specific shape, but are less noticeable at first. Typically the cameras are mounted on ceilings, thus making them an indoor camera, but they can be used outside if needed and mounted on a wall. Most cameras have night vision and heat and motion sensing technology, allowing for effective 24/7 surveillance. The dome camera has a wider viewing angle than the bullet camera and tends to be more resilient toward tampering and vandalism.