Even if an existing CCTV network has analogue cameras we can take these analogue feeds and convert them to IP via encoders either at the edge or in the control room, and once they are converted to IP, they are simply treated in the same way as any IP camera. At this point some people will say that this is a hybrid solution, which in the truest sense of the word it is. However, what we have achieved here is to start to implement IP at the edge which then allows us to build a complete IP infrastructure with all the benefits this brings rather than having the unhappy compromise of a hybrid solution at the most critical point of recording.
The benefits of IP that hybrid can’t offer are features such as iSCSI recording through RAID arrays to provide a 100% fail proof redundancy. There is no single point of failure in the recording and storage system either in the individual discs, the recording servers or RAIDs. The use of RAID arrays also brings in another key element in IP superiority – namely that as these solutions run over an IT platform, such a Windows Server, linked to industry standard storage. It becomes so much easier to build a scalable system, because the boxes have a larger capacity (the latest iSCSI are taking 16 x 2TB drives – so 28 TB of useable storage in only 7 inches / 17 ½ cm!) and you can just add additional capacity as required. Standard IT platforms also deliver a more competitive market approach for purchasing additional or future upgrades of security systems and software capability. IP based solutions offer further benefits such as intelligent alarm handling, and integration with other systems, such as intruder or access control, to promote a completely integrated solution.
If you are looking at expanding, migrating or a new CCTV solution, there should be no reason not to look at IP. IP is here today. It’s reliable and offers so much more than hybrid. So why buy twice? Don’t Go Hybrid. Choose the superior IP option.
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.