What role do cameras play in home security? What features should you look for to get the best coverage and protection?
You may have a gun for self-protection, but you can not always be at home to watch your house, and it is always safer to see who is at your door before you open it. Wireless, wired, and smart device-compatible security cameras are all options, as well as indoor and outdoor security cameras. It is challenging to select a security camera with all the choices available. Let’s review some of the most important security camera features to help you choose what will work best for you.
Security Camera Features
Security camera technology and the options that you can get are continually increasing, and the improvements in picture quality are amazing. The market used to be driven by high-end security surveillance cameras for businesses, but now that millions are being sold to homeowners, the market has driven the development of new camera features and options. Here are some of the key terms you will see so you have an idea of what to research further.
Security Camera Motion Detection
One of the most critical features of any security camera is motion detection and how well it does it. If the camera picks up leaves every time the wind blows, that will give you false alarms. False alarms are going to lead to frustration. Some cameras will have activity zones or motion zones. You can go into the settings and program the camera to only record motion that passes through a section in the field of view. Once that “zone” is passed through, the recording starts taping the entire space for future playback. This allows you to cover areas like the street in front of your house, but a car passing down the street will not cause the camera to record. Once someone walks up your drive, that area can be in the zone that will start the recording.
Security Camera Recording Time
How long do you want the camera to record once it detects motion? Some cameras record for a minute, some for five minutes, while others will record the entire time they see movement. Another factor is the pre-record and post-record settings. These settings are for the time the camera saves before and after it detects motion.
Security Camera Retention Time
You can store your footage in the cloud with a service, locally on a hard drive, or on an SD card inside the camera itself. However, all that storage does not differ from storing pictures or videos on your computer. There is only so much space available, so at some point, new recordings will overwrite the old ones.
Notifications and Playback
A key feature is receiving a notification when your security camera gets activated. Once you receive that notification, how can you see what’s going on? Some systems will send you a link, and some will send you a snapshot. Regardless of the type of notification, you will want to see the entire video, which you should be able to do by going to a website or using an application on your phone.
Will the camera be powered by wires or a battery?
Technology has come a long way, and while it is always preferable to have a power source like the one a doorbell uses, many of today’s cameras can run off an internal battery. The time the security camera can run on battery power can differ depending on how much motion it sees and lighting conditions. For example, the more activity there is, the faster the battery is going to drain.
We will discuss low light, location placement, the field of view, image quality, and other aspects you should know about in part two of choosing a security camera. There are more features and options that are possible than you can imagine.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Brian Armstrong grew up in a small farm town in rural Indiana and learned to shoot before he learned to drive. His career began as a firefighter and medic in Ft Wayne, IN. Throughout the years, he has owned multiple businesses, from construction to technology. His life has come full circle, and he is back to his emergency services roots, teaching emergency first aid and firearms courses.
Brian believes that the best way to learn “HOW” to do something is to first answer “WHY” you do something. He is an average guy with views like yours and is now sharing the knowledge gained from teaching, learning from others, and researching the topics you don’t have time to explore yourself. Follow him at @LetsTalkDGU
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