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CCTV: What’s the advantage of IP over analogue systems?

As well as a deterrent to crime, the main purpose of CCTV is to capture evidence that can help to catch a perpetrator in the act, identify them and provide evidence to secure a conviction. It can therefore be quite frustrating when the footage is not of a high enough quality to do that.

There can be a number of reasons for that – poor equipment, bad positioning, bad light or weather conditions or attempts by the perpetrator to disguise their appearance. Some of these are beyond your control but there are certainly measures you can take to overcome others. Good installation and using good quality equipment will certainly help but the measure that will make the most impact would be to go for an IP (internet protocol) system over an analogue one.

Why choose IP over analogue?

In a nutshell, IP’s main advantage is in the quality of images that it captures. IP has a much higher resolution than analogue. On analogue, you will often find that your footage looks OK but when you try to zoom in, for example on a face or number plate, the image distorts and isn’t much use. The higher resolution of IP allows you to zoom in because the mega pixels are greater. This offers a much better chance of capturing footage that allows you to identify what you need.

There are also other benefits to IP: remote access is much better, the cameras tend to have a much bigger field of view – which means you can capture a wider area and potentially require fewer cameras, it can recognise ‘triggers’ such as motion or tampering and therefore alert you to specific incidents and it is more flexible and scalable due to requiring less cabling and it not being reliant on a DVR.

So why doesn’t everyone have IP?

As with most things, a better system comes at a higher cost and that cost has been prohibitive in the past. However, now that IP is more established on the market and technology has developed, that cost has come down considerably over the last few years. While it is still more expensive than analogue, the difference is becoming increasingly smaller and currently costs around 20% more. We think that this is well worth the extra cost and we therefore offer IP as our default CCTV system (though we will install an analogue system if requested).

What if you already have an analogue system?

If you already have an analogue system it’s actually easier to upgrade to an IP system than you might think. Retrospective upgrades can be implemented using your existing cabling. Obviously this saves on labour and materials, so you wouldn’t have to pay for a complete new system.

We use IP CCTV for our own premises so you can come to our shop and see for yourself the difference it makes. If you would like a quote for an IP CCTV system or to upgrade your existing system, call into the shop in Wakefield, ring us on 0345 833 5543 or send us a message.