Want to make a PC Video Surveillance DVR - how?

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by WannaFly, Jul 28, 2009.

  1. WannaFly

    WannaFly Platinum Member

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    When I bought my house the previous owner had 2 security cameras set up outside and left them, they have wires running with just regular component ends (red/yellow plugs).

    I have an HTPC with a TON of HD space that runs 24/7

    I want to record the cameras onto the HTPC.

    What hardware and software do I need? Preferrably free software for windows. There are 2 cameras, but I might eventually add a third.

    Thanks in advance for help, Not sure if this is the right forum or not.
     
  2. alexstreff

    alexstreff Member

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    I've used Dorgem before on my computer. http://dorgem.sourceforge.net/. It's discontinued but it still works fine, and it's free. I'm not sure what you could use for hardware though.
     
  3. caspur

    caspur Senior member

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    You don't need software, since it comes with the hardware purchase.

    For the low end (home-use), I've had good results with Avermedia cards.

    NV5000

    The above is a good 120fps card, which is good for 4 cameras. Avermedia also makes an NV3000,
    which is a 32fps card, its cheaper...but uses the same software.

    The lower end Swann and Qsee cards typically only do 30fps...which is ok, but their software is often lacking.

    -I believe most of these cards use BNC-type connectors.

    If you want the higher end stuff, its gets real fancy and real expensive.

    For example:

    See how pretty it is?
     
  4. WannaFly

    WannaFly Platinum Member

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    alex: Thanks for the recommendation, but unfortunately these are not webcams.

    caspur: Thanks, those cards are expensive! The NV3000 isnt so bad, but I need to research the FPS, can I put two cameras on it and have it record only 16FPS per camera? I really just need low end, want to spend as little as possible.

    BJs/Costco sells a box systen for about 300-400 with a DVR, it might sound like i'd be better off going with something like that.
     
  5. alexstreff

    alexstreff Member

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    Dorgem works with any windows compatible webcam or camera. I've also seen systems at Menard's if you have one in your area.
     
  6. elconejito

    elconejito Senior member

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    If it's just a regular composite cable why not get a TV tuner? Hauppaugge PVR-150 is <$100. It only has one input though so you'd have to buy on for each camera. They come with software to record (it's not very good). There are other options for <$100 each from companies like Avermedia or El Gato that will do the same. they are just listed as TV Tuners, but you won't be using the "tuning" function since it's coming in via composite cable.
     
  7. WannaFly

    WannaFly Platinum Member

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    alex: its not windows compatible, only composite cables.

    elcon: Good idea, I already have a PVR-250 that i use to record TV. I wondeer if I hooked one of them up to it, would I lose a TV tuner and only be able to record 1 channel then?
     
  8. elconejito

    elconejito Senior member

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    ^^^ Pretty sure that would be the case.
     
  9. caspur

    caspur Senior member

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    -Yes, with two cameras you can get 16fps, which is sufficient. Basically, all you need for surveillance is to be able to capture a face or license plate. Its not movie making, so you don't need a huge amount of frames...at least for home use. All of the low end cards/DVRs should be around 30fps with capability for 4 cameras.

    -The standalone DVRs can be a good option, mainly due to the small form factor and lower power consumption. They also tend to be more stable than windows-based PCs with add-on cards. The limitations, of course, are expandability. With PC based systems, like the one I use now, I can add additional cards for more cameras, more hard drives for storage, etc....features that are not available on low end consumer DVRs. And as I've mentioned before, I tend to find the interface on the higher end products to be better (more GUI) less linux command line stuff that some of the standalones use.

    -I've also found the cameras that come with the bundled consumer DVRs to be pretty bad...the cmos ones are like webcams. The ccd ones are better, but often lack the focus options, higher quality optics or the longer range night vision of better cameras.


     
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