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Getting Started with Surveillance Systems – Part 2

Components of a Home Surveillance System

If you are looking to improve the security of your home or business by purchasing a surveillance system, you may be a little confused as to where to start. What do you need? What are the steps in getting the system set up? The following will give you some information that will introduce you to the basic components involved in the setup of a home surveillance system.


This is the most obvious component and one where careful consideration is needed to help you choose the right cameras. There are many different models of camera available and they have varying features. Which features are right for you will depend on your needs. Some considerations to think about is positioning, video quality, whether or not sound and night vision are required and whether or not you need movement. Once you have thought about these things you will be able to choose a camera that will meet the required specifications.

 BC-HD135-DN_ab DC-HD60-DN_a

Dummy Camera

When properly designing a video surveillance system, it can deter thieves or other crimes and provides invaluable information after a theft, attack or act of vandalism. But rather than take the time to choose and install the proper cameras that provide real time protection, some home owners and businesses just hang “dummy” cameras on the walls. What’s worse, some security providers actually recommend that they do so if you are on a budget. At MadDog Safety Technologies we do not recommend you doing this. If designing a video surveillance system for recording, protection and live monitoring, ONLY use live high quality cameras and recording devices.

A dummy security camera is about as useful as a stuffed pitbull . The dummy camera does not help you record activity or allow you monitor your premises. It just hangs there on the wall and by its design does nothing. So why waste the money and effort on something that does nothing with your live surveillance system? Be prepared and protect yourself the right way.

Dummy Security Camera
A Dummy Security Camera

DVR / Video Recording

This is the component of the system that records the footage. This is a vital part of your security system. The main difference between different DVR systems is their recording capacity. If you are happy to clear your system often, then a smaller capacity may suit you. If you would like a system that needs less intervention, then opt for one with a larger storage capacity. It is important that you frequently check that your DVR is in good working order and is recording, otherwise you may as well just have dummy cameras.



When installing your cameras, you need to think about how they are going to be powered. Also take into consideration that you are going to need to run video cable from your cameras back to your DVR and power supply box. Thoughtful placement of the cameras and the DVR can make cabling not only less of a hassle, but less messy as well. Always ensure that cabling is a big part of your thought process when creating your security system.



Power Supply Box

Multi-power supplies connect multiple cameras into one power box. This makes for a clean and more professional install. It makes the system easier to maintain.

A power supply box, also known as a power distribution box, allows for a surveillance system to easily manage the power requirement to multiple cameras from a central point, usually at a location near your DVR. This allows your camera installation to be neater. For example, instead of having multiply individual power supply plugs, plugged into a power strip/surge protector, all of your camera power wires can neatly be run to a single power supply box. A power supply box is normally installed near your DVR. MadDog Safety Technologies power supply boxes are very simple to install. Each cameras power cable simply screws into the power supply box. The power supply box plugs into a standard power outlet. No electrician is required for installation of the box.



So that’s it, four simple components of a home or business surveillance system. You can see that these systems are actually quite simple and with a little know how, you can easily set one up for yourself and get extra peace of mind and security for your home.

Stay tuned for part 3 of the Getting Started with Surveillance Systems series.

MadDog Safety Technologies
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