IP Megapixel Camera System? Digital or Analogue System? What is What?


What do these terms mean and what type do I need for my premises and type of project? We would like to be of some assistance in helping you to make a choice regarding the type of CCTV System you need The first easily misunderstood terminology we would like to clarify is Analogue and Digital:

  1. See an IP Security Camera System Example
  2. Digital or Analogue System? What is What?
  3. Definition DVR and NVR
  4. Megapixel IP Camera Advantages - The Future is Now!

See an IP Security Camera System Example


IP Installations have two advantages to analogue CCTV Recording Systems:

  1. If your business premises are large, the immense saving of cable costs will make the installation more affordable.
  2. Your CCTV application needs to be of a very High Specification. This could be in Banks, Public Transport, Train Stations, Airports, Military compounds, Police and / or any other high security application. IP Mega Pixel Cameras can then be utilized and provide for up to 4x higher picture definition/ resolution than conventional CCD Cameras. Advanced Camera Intelligence features and the incorporation of these Cameras into manufacturing processes are another advantage.

Our IP CCTV Specialists can use your existing LAN (Local Area Network), expand it where necessary, or install a completely new one. We also offer several types of specialized wireless network solutions. You think getting your premises networked will be hard? Phone us and find out what we can do.


The two Geovision Mega Pixel IP Cameras to the Left (see example above) have been added to an area, which provided existing LAN.

The three IP Security Cameras to the Right were installed in a new extension. Our IT Engineer installed a Network Point in that area to incorporate the three new Cameras.

The only cable installation needed for this project: 1x Cat V (Standard Network Cable)


Digital or Analogue System? What is What?

Analogue is actually Digital! Yes - that is right. All modern security cameras available from any whole saler or installer are Digital Cameras also called CCD Cameras. CCD stands for Charged Coupled Device, which is the name for the digital micro chip producing the picture signal. The lense of these CCD Cameras, focuses the light onto that chip. The chip has thousands of micro cells, which react to light sensitivety and colour frequency.


We do not want to get too technical here so... ... why do we call CCD Cameras Analogue when in fact they are not? The heart and key issue differentiating between the different types of CCTV Systems is the Recording Device and the technology used to get the video signal from the CCD chip to the data storage.

There are two different type of Cameras: CCD Camera and IP Camera. There are two main kinds of video signal transport (so to say): Coaxial cable (CCD Camera) and LAN / WWW, Local Area Internet,world wide web (IP Camera).


There are three kinds of Video Recording Systems: VHS Video Recorder, DVR Hard Disk Recorder and NVR Network Video Recorder. Now, that we confused you, let us put the picture back together in the explanation below :-)


Definition DVR and NVR (Digital Video Recorder & Network Video Recorder)


VHS Video Recorder: A CCTV System , using a normal video recorder would be classed ANALOGUE = not Digital. The low recording quality has been overtaken by digital video recorders. VHS Video Recorders are what you want to replace... if you have any.

DVR Hard Disk Video Recorder: A CCTV System, utilizing a DVR to record video data would ba classed DIGITAL. Even though the CCD Camera transports an analogue 1v video signal right up to the recorder input. The DVR converts the signal into a MPEG4 or other internet/storage friendly stream. Several months of recordings can be held on a DVR, without the need of ever changing any tapes. Many modern DVR also provide the facility to be assigned an IP Address and therefore allow operators to view live as well as recorded video via LAN and or the Internet. Yet, this does not make the system a IP Camera System. Many customers ask us to install an IP Camera System because they would like to be able to watch their premesis remotely. In most cases we then recommend to install a DVR system - NOT IP.

NVR Network Video Recorder: A CCTV System using NVR's to record video would also be classed as Digital. Rather than getting accessing only the recording system via the LAN or Internet as with the DVR, with an IP Camera system every single Camera needs network communication with the recording device. The main reason for going with IP, is the reduction of cabling and labour cost at large premises, which DO ALREADY HAVE a fully installed Local Area Network. The CCD Chip signal in the IP Camera is converted into a network streamable signal straight away and needs to be transported to the NVR just like e-mails or a video clip from youtube. Currently the most cost effective and best quality / reliable solution is DVR Hard Disk Recording. Only large and multi building premises with existing LAN Networks make IP Camera Systems cost effective.

One Technology that will change the ballance in the future is the Mega Pixel Camera Technology. Mega Pixel Cameras provide a very high picture resolution as well as intelligence functions. This will become interesting when the price comes down a few hundred percent. We offer installation of mega pixel cameras mainly for high profile applications. Also, Ideal CCTV can combine existing DVR Systems with IP Camera Systems. So if you install a DVR Recording System now, it can be incorporated and upgraded in the future. Hopefully I have been of some assistance in bringing some light into this terminology for you.