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Making the Right Choice Of Home Security Colour Cameras.

I am concerned to make the right choice, considering the extensive range of home security colour cameras now available.

This very much depends on the requirements of the site for your project, internal or external use, range of the area to be covered, daylight only or to include infrared and night vision, visible as a deterrent or hidden, hard wired or wireless, etc.

First of all, let me provide you with a basic understanding of modern CCTV colour cameras. 

CCTV (closed circuit television) is a system in which all the elements are directly connected or linked by wireless.

A CCD sensor (Charge Coupled Device) in the camera converts light to a video signal.CCDs vary in size and sensitivity. Half-inch chips produce the highest sensitivity and resolution making them the expensive option. Third-inch chips are increasing in popularity as their performance has improved greatly with development.

Resolution means resolution in TV lines, standard camera resolution is 350 TV lines, with high-resolution CCTV colour cameras producing more than 450 lines.The treatment of the video signal is then dependant on the type of camera; analogue or digital, black and white or colour, medium or high resolution.

Monochrome or Colour?
Home security colour cameras are more expensive than black and white and they are less sensitive, so night usage is not a practical option unless good lighting is available. Some CCTV colour cameras have filters to give colour by day and black and white at night or in low light conditions. Colour is more efficient compared to a monochrome image as an aid to tracking an intruder.

CCTV black and white cameras work well in daytime and in low light, they are more sensitive and have an infra red capability allowing them to be hidden, so that intruders are unaware.

There is a wide range of home security colour cameras available for interior or exterior use; Body Cameras, big enough to give a visible deterrent and excellent picture quality covering a large area, but they require a lens and housing, Motion sensitive cameras, Infrared Cameras with Night Vision and a range of up to 30 metres.

Dome Cameras ceiling mounted and discreet, Mini Cameras, very small but still with excellent picture quality. A wide choice of DIY camera systems are available to suit all budgets.

Analogue or Digital?
Until recently most home security colour cameras have been of the analogue type, producing good quality images at a reasonable price. Computer microchips have now replaced the integrated circuits in the camera head, enabling manufacturers to offer much-improved easily installed products.

CCTV Digital Colour Cameras operate over a wider range of lighting conditions and include Night Vision Security Cameras. They offer more consistent colour images and provide for more flexible use.

The Camera Lens
The selection of the correct camera lens for a particular project is one of the most important considerations in achieving an efficient CCTV system. The basic lens of a CCTV colour camera is a surprisingly simple device. It can only be focused on a single position and the angle of view is pre set, everything before and after this becomes gradually out of focus. The iris opening is fixed for a particular scene and is only sensitive to broad changes in light levels. Automatic iris lenses are available, but can only be set for the overall light present, however they can adjust for different contrasts within a scene.

If you are still unsure and seriously considering having a home security colour camera system installed, I would recommend that you consult several professional CCTV installation companies, who are able to offer a number of free services which include, site surveys, drawing up plans, costing and system design.

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