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what is an IP video monitoring system? 


Traditional analogue CCTV solutions have been around for decades. These systems typically use standard definition cameras to record video from monitored areas to either tape, or more commonly in recent years, hard drive based devices, similar to the family Personal Video recorder.


Like older style cathode ray tube television sets, analogue CCTV systems typically use either PAL or NTSC recording, limiting picture quality and options for zoom and video analytics.  Analogue CCTV systems are typically connected with co-axial or specialised cable which is often expensive and difficult to install and may have length limitations before signal loss is experienced. Further, analogue cameras often require separate electrical power connections at the camera installation point, although this is often now incorporated as an additional element of the co-ax cable. 


Network connected cameras are the disruptive technology of recent years which are expected to replace analogue systems entirely. These cameras use Internet Protocol, or IP, to connect the camera to a recording device. Because these cameras are nodes on a computer network, they use the same, familiar connection techniques as your computers, printers and other such devices. Cameras can be connected using standard network cable and, using a technique called Power over Ethernet, these same cables can be used to deliver power to the camera. This further minimises installation cost and increases flexibility. You can easily relocate cameras or add further cameras. Some cameras even use wireless networking but these require localised power connectivity. 


IP cameras are generally designed to deliver high definition video to the recorder and any device that is authorised to monitor the system. High definition can be anything from 720p, 1080p or up to 4K. These are terms that people now find familiar as they are used to describe modern LCD, and LED televisions. They are recognised as providing high quality vision and far exceed the capabilities of CRT sets which use technology originally developed in the 1930s.  


IP networking makes connection to the Internet simple and this, in turn, can allow you to access the video stream from your IP security system from any Internet connected device, anywhere in the world at any time of the day, every day of the year.  Camera access is password protected, ensuring your safety and privacy. You can also review recorded footage and, depending on the camera being used, change the angle, focus and direction in which the camera is pointing, all from your phone, tablet or laptop computer. 

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