4 Tips for Choosing the Best Surveillance System for Your Small Business

Video surveillance is an essential investment for your business. Choosing the BEST security camera is key to ensuring that high quality video surveillance footage is obtained and intended outcomes are obtained.

1. Determine your need

Do you have multiple buildings? If so, a great option is a network video recorder (NVR). According to HS Tech Group, if you need a large array of cameras or significant video storage, a network video recorder is your best bet. If you’re looking for basic observation,security enhancements, theft deterrents digital video recorders (DVR) are also great options.

NVR’s are distinct from DVR’s as their input is from a network rather than a direct connection to a video capture card or tuner. Video on a DVR is encoded and processed at the DVR, while video on an NVR is encoded and processed at the camera, then streamed to the NVR for storage or remote viewing

2. Determine coverage and placement

Survey the area that you want to observe. Depending on the situation, you’ll need to choose a security camera that will best capture the scene. First, determine how wife of an area needs to be covered—this is called the field of view. Second, determine the distance that the subject is expected to be from the security camera—this is called target distance.

A camera with a wide dynamic range is ideal for viewing entrances since it can handle the change in light as the door opens and closes. An example of these kind of cameras is the Dome cameras, offered by top security providers; they provide a full 360 degree coverage.

Types of Cameras:

Here are some common styles of security cameras:

Bullet Cameras: (also known as lipstick cameras) These are small (about the size of a finger) cylindrical shaped cameras that are usually sealed in a weatherproof housing. They are a well hidden camera due to their small size. These fit well under an eve of a house, and can be used indoors or outdoors.


Dome Cameras: These are very commonly seen in malls and department stores where the security camera needs to look nice and blend in with the surroundings so as not to make customers feel uncomfortable. These security cameras also sometimes come with dark tinted glass which makes it difficult for anyone to determine which way the camera is pointed.


Box Cameras: These are very commonly seen in some shops and in banks were the security camera does not need to be hidden and is used partially as a deterrent. The box shape of the camera is highly visible and also allows for a variety of variable focal length lenses to be used to achieve the desired coverage area and magnification of details. These security cameras are usually restricted to indoor use only since they are not sealed.


3. Choose the system you prefer

There is the Analog system vs IP system.

IP stands for Internet Protocol, and basically refers to a digital video camera that can send and receive data via a computer network, as opposed to sending a feed to a Digital Video Recorder (DVR). The difference between both is comparable to the concept of buying a flip phone or a smart phone ( IP being the smart phone and Analog being the flip phone). While a flip phone is still purchased by some people, most opt for the smartphone. Similarly, an IP system is more user-friendly, has better resolution, has cloud storage, can be installed easily and may be entirely wireless.

VGA vs 2MP

4. Considering Cost

In general, the old saying “you get what you pay for” applies to a certain extent when buying security equipment. Sure, you can save some money if you shop around, but beware of very cheap security cameras as you’re likely to be disappointed with the results. Find a good vendor who is willing to work with you and takes the time to become familiar with your requirements. Don’t just settle for the cheapest security camera. Take the time to research various products, talk with a vendor you can trust and then buy CCTV equipment that represents the best performance for the price as it applies to your security needs.
Choosing a security system system for your small business shouldn’t boil down to just cost. It’s always best to have to invest a little more now, than have to ‘pay’ later, for lack of quality that’s needed especially for a business. While you’re deciding which system is best for you,it’s also a good idea to make sure you have the business insurance you need. Get in touch with your UniAmerica Insurance agent today to get the coverage your business needs or give us a call at 1-310-835-3373.