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Even though the majority of our interest nowadays is concentrated on the development to IP video technologies , it’s worthwhile to be aware that analog CCTV surveillance cameras can certainly still be very beneficial for a lot of security applications , particularly those on a tight budget . With conventional CCTV surveillance cameras , the video signal is processed and transported in analog standard format for localized viewing from one principal monitoring site . However, that doesn’t imply you can’t employ analog video cameras in an IP security environment . Using digital video recorders (DVR) and hybrid DVRs allows you take advantage of existing analog cameras while migrating the digital surveillance world.

CCTV Security Camera, What is it?

To explain it simply, a CCTV camera transmits an analog signal via coax cable to central location for video monitoring and recording. Even though surveillance cameras have started to trend towards digital formats instead of analog, CCTV cameras are still very much used, and bring a cost-effective solution to many of the common security surveillance scenarios.

Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) first arrived around 1940, and later became the go to technology for security surveillance in the early 70’s. CCTV is a proven and stable method when it comes to surveillance technology and offers a wide variety of CCTV camera models for any possible security application you can think of. You can easily find CCTV products provided by wholesale security camera distributors across the USA.

Analog Security Pros and Cons

Purchasing a security surveillance system nowadays can be difficult and there a lot of things to consider. A popular question amongst consumers is “should I install analog cameras or HD cameras?”. Both technologies have their pros and cons. Let’s take a look at analog CCTV security cameras.

Analog CCTV Pros

  • Initial low cost – In most circumstances, the up-front cost of analog CCTV cameras is just simply less than HD cameras.
  • Universal Compatibility – You can easily combine and install cameras from any manufatcurer of analog CCTV cameras.
  • Low light – For the most part analog CCTV cameras usually manage low-light scenarios much better than IP video cameras on average, although IP surveillance camera technology vastly improving in this regard.

Analog CCTV Cons

  • Cabling Costs – When you are installing a large-scale security camera system , CCTV analog cameras need complex cabling arrangements that may be very costly as well as demanding to install.
  • Features are Limited – Many of the sophisticated functions available nowadays with IP video cameras ( for example : megapixel image resolution, video analytics and digital zoom,) , aren’t found in analog CCTV devices.

CCTV Security System Components

There’s a whole lot that is used for a normal CCTV video security system. Though surveillance cameras receive the majority of the consideration at first, there are additional considerations , for example observing, recording, and archiving the video , as well as the devices needed for performing those duties . Here’s a glance at the simple parts of a standard CCTV system.

The Cameras

Surveillance cameras are the place to start for almost all CCTV video security systems . You will find never-ending options when selecting CCTV cameras and lenses – starting from fixed versions intended for monitoring specified areas , to day/night video cameras, as well as highly effective PTZ domes for patrolling large sites .


In a conventional CCTV surveillance camera installation, operators watch video footage from a main destination on a monitor very similar to a Television, but with larger lines of image resolution for far better image quality. CCTV monitors may be dedicated ( which means they show video from one camera ) , or call-up ( which means managers may having access to several video cameras simultaneously ) .


With an analog system, coaxial wire is necessary for transferring live video feeds from the CCTV surveillance cameras . This really is certainly one of the disadvantages of analog CCTV video security, since the cable is generally costly and tough to install, particularly for bigger camera systems, and those were video cameras have to be placed in challenging locations.


Most recent CCTV video security systems include DVRs ( digital video recorders ) which allow managers to receive a number of the advantages of a network-based security system. DVRs transform the analog video footage to digital, designed to help increase storage size, and should make it much simpler to search archived video footage, as well as permitting consumers to stream live video over the internet or network for remote viewing from anywhere.

Types of CCTV Security Cameras

Fixed CCTV Cameras

Fixed surveillance cameras aim in one direction , making these ideal for overseeing specified regions of interest. They’re also popular for operations when it’s good to install cameras in plainly noticeable areas. Because of this, fixed CCTV security cameras can be highly effective not just for recording video footage of dubious activity, but additionally for discouraging burglars and vandals from performing their actions to begin with. The direction of the video camera is focused at the time of installation. Several surveillance cameras additionally accept interchangeable lenses as well as housings, which means you gain the versatility to satisfy your numerous security needs .

PTZ Cameras

PTZ surveillance cameras are perfect for wide-area monitoring. They provide owners the capability to remotely take control of pan, tilt, and zoom functions to pursue action and zoom in for in depth observing. This really is an area in which analog CCTV surveillance cameras decline behind their IP video camera competitors. With IP surveillance cameras, the pan/tilt/zoom features are managed physically or automatically and transferred over one network wire, while analog CCTV cameras need extra cabling to execute comparable functions.

CCTV Camera Image Quality Measurement

TVL Resolution Explained

Image details of CCTV analog security cameras is normally conveyed in a method of measurement known as TVL (or better known as TV Lines). CCTV video pictures composed of active horizontal lines. All these lines are transported to a monitor or recording system in 2 off-set fields. One particular field includes even-numbered lines while the additional lines contain odd-numbered lines. The observing party sees a complete video image because these lines are interlaced. Because the image bears a 3×4 aspect ratio , the total details you could measure in 3/4 of the picture’s width establishes the horizontal TVL image resolution. Usually, the majority of traditional CCTV cameras provide a TVL image resolution of around 380, whilst high-resolution video cameras delivers something nearer to 540 TVL.

What happens to video quality when you convert video to Digital?

Nearly all analog CCTV cameras these days utilize a DVR for their recording platform. This enables the analog video to be digitized for documenting as well as for distribution over the internet or network . Although a DVR method is an economic substitute for IP or HD video, and offers customers beneficial advantages like digital storage as well as remote ease of access, you will find disadvantages. The first is a small drop-off in picture quality. To put it simply, it’s difficult to maintain picture quality with this kind of setup due to the numerous analog to digital conversions that occur from the cctv video cameras to the digital recorder. Cabling length additionally will play a part, seeing that the further the video signals travel, the weaker the video signal becomes. Nevertheless, a DVR-based option is a really great choice for customers seeking to experience a number of the advantages of digital IP or HD security systems while making use of lower-cost CCTV surveillance cameras .