Video Surveillance Made Simple  




MUI Technology Solutions

4660 Natomas Blvd #120-177

Sacramento, CA 95835

Phone 916-698-0299

FAX 916-921-8600


Security Camera FAQ


What is Closed Circuit Television (CCTV)?

CCTV or Closed Circuit Television refers to a visible or covert video system intended for only a limited number of viewers. In Closed Circuit TV (CCTV), the picture is viewed or recorded, but not broadcast. It was initially developed as a means of security for banks and casinos; however, today it has been developed to the point where it is simple and inexpensive enough to be used with Home Security Systems, and for everyday surveillance.

What type of security camera do I need?

A security camera can come in many different styles including dome, bullet, infrared and c-mount. The security camera that will work best for your application will depend on several factors such as whether you will use the security cameras inside or out, during the day, nighttime, or both.

Bullet style security cameras are the most popular. They can be used inside or out. These security cameras come in black and white or color and come with all of the required mounting hardware. The security cameras casings are weather resistant and don't require added external protection. Most security cameras have a fixed 4mm lens that allows you to see facial features out to about 35 feet and provides a 70 degree angle of view. This is the widest angle you can have without distorting the picture.

Resolution levels for black and white security cameras are about 400 lines, any higher and the benefits are minimal. For color cameras, the higher the resolution the better.

Infrared security cameras are also very popular as they allow an image to be seen in little or no lighting conditions. Most infrared security cameras are bullet style and can be used inside or out. The cameras have infrared lighting installed around the outer edge of the lens which allows the security camera to see in no light for up to 25 feet - even further with a little bit of light (like street lighting or an outside light).

A relatively new type of security camera to the market is the day / night security camera. These types of security cameras have an extra sensitive imaging chip which allows it to capture a good picture in low light situations without using infrared led’s. This is especially handy in outdoor applications because infrared security cameras do not do well in outdoor housings. Unless the infrared security camera is installed flush up to the glass of the housing, the infrared lights can reflect off of the glass of the housing which degrades the image.

The advantage to c-mount security cameras is that the lens can be changed. You'll want a special camera lens if you need to see further than 35 ft. The color c-mount security camera allows you to change lenses on the camera giving you the ability to zoom into a particular area. Varifocal camera lenses allow you to adjust the focus from 5 to 50 mm. These lenses can be used inside only unless you put it in special housing for outdoor use.

Dome security cameras basically provide a different look. Also, if you have any concerns about tampering, check out our Infrared Armor Dome Security Camera. It will withstand a 10 lb sledgehammer blow and can be used inside or out, daytime or nighttime.

What is a PC based DVR?

A PC-based DVR is a DVR built around a computer .  You have a case either a tower or a rack mount.  Inside you have your usual mother board, LAN board, video board CPU Hard Drive and memory.  To this we add a CD-writer to burn and archive any prerecorded video.  And inside is a DVR board.  This board receives the video from the cameras and working in conjunction with the DVR software provides all the necessary, video functions like, Video compression, converting the video to a file, camera controls and display, record and playback functions. 

What is a Stand-alone DVR?

A Stand Alone DVR is an all in one unit,  it consist of a cabinet (like a VCR) and inside all components, boards, power supplies, CPU and all DVR related components are manufactured  on one board.  On the one main board there are IC Chips which contain the operating and DVR software.

What is the difference between a PC based DVR and a Stand-alone DVR?

Because Stand Alone DVRs are built completely on just one circuit board.  They are very reliable and very easy to use.  Their software is simple reliable and easy to use.  Basically there are no conflicts and all hardware and software are matched exactly in this (all on one board) embedded style system.  PC-Based DVR's give you more advanced features, and they are upgradeable and expandable.  They have more crunching power  by way of their bigger CPUs and memory.  You can easily add Hard Drives, DVD burners, CD-Burners and advanced internet and telephone access options.  If advanced viewing, playback and video file saving over the internet is important to you, consider a PC-Based DVR.  PC-Based DVRs are typically used in Banks, Malls, Airports and large department stores. We have Systems with 16, 32, 64 and 128 camera inputs.


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