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I have lurked the forums for a while now and finally registered. We currently have 5 IP cameras (VGA) that we use for various tasks and i really want to get better video quality and a few more cameras. We are fortunate to live in a low crime area so the additional cameras are more for a "just in case" scenario than a true current security need.


Here is my current setup



3 Foscam 8910W's - 2 are used as baby monitors and 1 is used to monitor a play room in our house that the kids use.

2 Dlink DCS-930L's - One is mounted on the front porch and one is in our garage. These do not have night vision but our front porch light comes on at dusk so it has not been a problem.



I currently use iSPY (free edition), it has taken a lot of tweaking to get it semi stable, but in all i do not like it, i get way too many false alerts. I also use LiveCams Pro on my iOS devices for camera viewing around the house and when we are away. I picked iSPY at the time because it was free and sent email alerts out with snapshots.


What i am looking for


Replace camera on porch with a IP camera that is at least 720P

HD IP camera to cover driveway

HD Camera to cover back entrance to house

Replace Dlink camera inside garage with a HD camera that has IR


My budget is pretty low, i have been looking at a few cheap cameras like these.


Possible for inside garage - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009GYQIES/ref=ox_sc_sfl_title_1?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=A1LKQ281PIIC8X


One of these for all other HD cameras needed? - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009GYR2A2/ref=ox_sc_sfl_title_2?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=A1LKQ281PIIC8X or http://www.newfrog.com/p/new-3-6mm-1-0m-1080x720p-hd-p2p-outdoor-security-ip-camera-onvif-us-plug-73193.html?utm_source=BS&utm_medium=slickdeals&utm_campaign=DEAL


I know the above are cheap cameras that most people on the forums here would not consider, i am just looking for a cheap, workable solution. I did find some hikvision (DS-2CD2032-I) cameras on eBay that i can get for $90 a piece from china, but that is 3x the cost of the other cameras, and i am not sure if i would get 3x the value out of them. Does anyone have any recommendations? Are the cheaper cameras i listed absolute garbage that i should not touch with a ten foot pole? My expectations would not really be that high (as long as the picture quality is better than what i have now), i would not expect the features of a $1000 camera for $30-$40.


As far as software goes i am trailing Blue Iris at the moment and so far it is OK, i have it installed on an Intel NUC (DN2820) and it hovering around 25-30% CPU currently with the four VGA cameras i have now. I also trialed Milestone Xprotect Go and i really liked it, however the lack of email notifications in the free version pretty much kills it for me, and the $49/camera cost for the next version up is more than i wish to spend. Does anyone else have any recommendations for another software product that might fit my needs?


I could not find a good pic of the front of my house, so i pulled one from google street view, the red star is where my current camera is for the front door.



I really appreciate any help you experts can offer, thanks.

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I would consider Hikvision, they are worth the 3x extra cost, you will get 10x the value in the long run as well. You can use Hikvision's iVMS to view the cameras and iVMS PCNVR for a PC based recorder if you chose to. iVMS and iVMS PCNVR is also free (but you can only use Hikvision cameras)


I bought cheap junk, it is all gone now, I replaced everything with Hikvision. Sure it cost a few bucks, but in the end it was well worth it. I wish I never wasted the money on the cheap junk, could have bought a couple good Hikvision cameras instead.


You can also look at Dahua as well, they have a good following on these boards as well.


Good luck

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Thanks for the advide, If I can convince the Mrs to let me spend the extra money i will go with the hikvision probably. Any specific recommendation for models I should be looking at? In the picture of the front of my house where my current dlink camera is, would a bullet or a mini dome be a better choice? Also what would be good for a clean shot of the driveway, Would the best place to place one be under the soffit of the garage facing out toward the street?


Is one piece of software (ivms, blueiris) better than the other or does it run down to personal preference? I might just have to get a hikvision camera so I can test out the software and see if I like it more than blue iris.

Edited by Guest

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The way I would approach it would be to do this slowly, build it as you go so to speak, so you are not buying 5 cameras or so at once. I would buy one Hikvision, impress the Mrs. with the quality of the video and night vision and let her demand that you buy more


That is how I did mine, I bought a couple Hikvision cameras at a time until all my old cameras were replaced.


I would do the driveway one first, since you do not have a camera there. Leave the others and replace as you go, why replace them now if they are still working?


I did my driveway camera similar to yours, I went under the soffit at used Hikvision DS-2CD2332-I, the turret camera with the IR Array. I used a 4mm lens, you could use a 2.8mm in your situation and you would probably get more of your front yard, side yard as well with a wide angle lens


Link to the turret camera



As for software, I believe that is a personal preference on here, I see people raving about Blue Iris, Milestone, etc. I use iVMS, I have all Hikvision NVRs and cameras now so I don't need 3rd party support. It does what it does, sure it has a slight learning curve when setting everything up, but I am network guy so this stuff is easy to me.

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Thanks for sharing the knowledge of CCTV camera. But sometimes we need not only the home security by checking the CCTV footage but also needs to check a/c filters and replace if needed, car watch and wash, window washing, full visual inspection of interior and exterior including: walls, ceilings, floors, garage, doors, windows, pool etc.. So when I go for holiday with my family to leave the empty home we give the responsibilities to the South West Florida Property Services and enjoy the holiday confidently.

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Thanks, a couple more questions though.


Is there a difference between the 2332 version of the turret and the 3332 version of the turret? The 3332 version is about $10 cheaper.




Also, would it be better to put one of these where my current camera is on my porch? or would it be better to put it under the soffit of the garage garage and get an 8mm or 12mm lense and direct it at the door? The reason i ask is that running network cable by the front door will be much more difficult that it would be if it was attached to the garage (current camera there is wireless). I am just not sure if the quality would be worse or better if it i moved it.


On a side note, i think i might give xprotect another look, the more i think about it i could always use xprotect for the live viewing/recording and just use the cameras themselves to send out alerts when there is movement.



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Hi Brent,


I see your problem with the price of Milestone.

My humble suggestion is to register the free version, "XProtect Go".

It will only allow you 5 days of recordings. The main reasons though are that it is very stable, has its own mobile client, works with most IP and analogue camera and its free!


With regard to the cameras, i just started using " Sunell" cameras and i found that there were alot more bang for the buck compared to the big names that i was using.

As Dan said, 1 by 1 and you will get there. This will also help you to monitor cpu usage, and storage requirements on a per new camera basis.


Lastly, I would say that I would mount on the side of your garage closest to your door. For this, I wont use anything bigger than a 4mm lens though. From the picture, the door looks no more than 4metres away. My general rule of thumb, for every mm on the lens, cut 1m on ground. So if you put a 12mm lems, chances are you are focusing on an area 12metres away!


I hope this helps.


If you would like more info, you may PM me. I am new here but i've been integrating systems for the past 9years and I dont mind sharing what I've learned along the way.

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