When migrating CCTV from an analogue system it is essential that users avoid marketing messages from major players to “Go hybrid”. The main thrust of the Going hybrid messaging seems to be driven from the storage platform manufacturers. There are now a large number of NVR’s or DVR’s that position themselves as “Hybrid”. And by “Hybrid” they mean that they can record analogue BNC feeds and IP feeds at the same time. But here is the rub – they don’t give the detail on which IP cameras they support as a recording platform, because the customer’s main focus is on quality of systems for current use i.e. frame rate or resolution, and what recording profile can be supported for the available storage. Unfortunately this can lead to a world of difference on how future-proofed each customer’s security system will be.
The other issues I see in the Going hybrid message are:
1. You are still limited to a certain number of frames per second per box – therefore not allowing you to be flexible in storage profiles or indeed having to waste ports to meet an fps target.
2. There seems to be a maximum frame rate of 12.5fps per channel when the industry is looking at better quality images for legal evidential purposes – Will 12.5 fps give you that perfect freeze frame face shot? In many cases, as well, if you were to load up a DVR / NVR with the full complement of channels then you wouldn’t even get 12.5fps.
3. While some recorders can have additional storage added, these are still limited in total available size, so creating an untidy solution with little or no resilience or failover, as you have to connect the cameras to that NVR / DVR which may become a single point of failure.
Other market messaging behind Going hybrid is that it allows end users to protect their existing infrastructure by not having to rip out existing analogue cameras, cables or control room equipment. While this has historically been used as a scare tactic to force up the “perceived” cost of an IP solution, Controlware agree that this is a key factor in choosing a cost-effective security solution. If an end user has an investment in analogue cameras, transmission or back office they wish to retain, there is another way to migrate these installations to IP and still allow them to add IP cameras in the future.
System integrators and end-users who wish to see the benefits of an IP-based solution should look to someone who really knows the technology and can give an impartial view. It is common sense that manufacturers will only support their own hardware and will promise the earth for it, whereas a distributor will have evaluated a number of solutions from different vendors and be able to say that product A is the best for solution B because of XYZ whereas product Y is the best for solution C because of etc etc.
Taken from Controlware Country Manager Mark Harraway’s “Why go hybrid?” article as published in the September edition of Professional Security Magazine. To read the complete article click here.