Here we look at the key drivers for selecting IP over analogue, and what people should be aware of when looking at specifying CCTV projects.
Total Cost of Ownership
It is recognised that some components of an IP solution may be more expensive than an analogue one. However when the total cost of the deployed solution is calculated, IP has been shown to be more cost effective overall than analogue systems. These savings can be made in reduced cabling costs by only using one cable to carry video, audio, telemetry and in most cases power to the camera through PoE (Power over Ethernet). Further savings can also be made in reduced storage costs by use of different compression techniques such as H.264 and recording profile planning by using the on-board memory of the camera or encoder to only record on alarm or at different frame rates / resolutions. With advances in hardware platforms such as the servers and RAID arrays more and more cameras can be supported per server (We can currently support 64 cameras at 4CIF / 25 fps per server today for instance). Operational costs can also be offset by using IP CCTV systems for other purposes such as ANPR (Automatic Number Plate Recognition) or using them for measurement of marketing and promotional activities as shown in retail applications.
If you or one of your clients is debating whether to go IP then the decision has to be Yes! You should not only consider IP on its technical merits raised here but also look more widely to see if there are any other benefits that can be gained. If you are looking at challenges in your business and want to improve efficiencies then look at IP to see what can be achieved.
Previously we have spoken specifically about the cost advantages of IP over analogue systems. If you would like to read these arguments and a detailed cost breakdown then please drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.controlware.co.uk/tco.
Also if you would like to challenge Controlware to prove that IP can be just as cost effective, provide a better service than analogue or allow you to enable an upgrade to IP without replacing your entire system then please contact us.