Looking to install a home security system for your home or workplace?

Studies show that over 2.5 million burglaries happen every year. More than half of those victims are from the residential sector. If you still don't have a proper security system, you could be putting yourself at risk.

A great way to start is with security cameras.

The first thing to note is that security cameras can refer to the unit itself. However, it's also a catchphrase for the entire security system. Knowing how a security camera functions is the same as understanding how a CCTV system works.

Now that the confusion is gone, you're more than ready to get behind the scenes. Read on and find out how security cameras function.


Components of CCTV Systems


We'll get into the details of the inner workings of a basic security camera shortly. Before that, a knowledge of key components is crucial. It will help you understand the process better, knowing the parts involved:



A camera is the most crucial piece of equipment. That's why the term "security camera" can refer to the entire system.

A modern setup that makes use of the internet can forego other components for a mobile app. However, a security camera remains to be a piece of vital equipment in capturing videos.


NVR and DVR Systems

A video recorder stores all videos captured by the camera. The two types are network video recorder (NVR) and digital video recorder (DVR).

NVR integrates with security cameras that use the internet for transmitting videos. In contrast, a DVR receives transmission through a wired network. Most American households use the DVR system since they're cheaper.



The monitor is where you can view the actual footage recorded by the security camera. If you're using a 4k resolution camera, you need to have a suitable monitor. The two should match so you can take advantage of the picture quality.

These days, new home security systems make use of smartphones. Mobile phones provide easy viewing and better video quality.


Video Management Software

The video management software allows you to control your NVR or DVR recordings. A good video management software should have a user-friendly interface. It should allow you to isolate or extract specific parts of the recording.



Difference Between WiFi and Analog


Not all Americans use the internet. Either by choice or circumstances, about 10% of adults in the United States are still not part of the norm.

Analog security cameras still exist to accommodate this percentage. However, some prefer this old-school approach.

So, what is the primary difference between Analog and WiFi cameras? This lies in the way they deliver the video footage.

A Wi-Fi-connected security camera allows you to receive live stream footage. Analog security cameras, on the other hand, record the footage for later viewing.

Here's a quick rundown of each camera type:


WiFi Cameras

WiFi security cameras compress other components into a single app. The app acts as the video recorder, monitor, and video management software. It allows you to do the following tasks:

  • Control the camera from afar

  • Receive notifications when motion or specific person gets captured on camera

  • Watch live stream footage

You're not restricted to monitoring security on-site only - you can now do it from a remote location as well. It will be possible as long as you have an internet connection. You can track what your security camera captures anywhere in the world.


Analog Cameras

Analog cameras will not show you the video on the spur of the moment. Instead, you can only get to view it at a later time.

An analog camera is like a traditional CCTV system. It records the videos to external storage, usually a hard drive or an SD card.

It's not possible to do a live stream with these cameras. However, newer models still have the latest technologies like Infrared and night vision.

Most of the time, video footage like scientific surveys doesn't need constant viewing. Some outdoor security cameras also provide surveillance in out-of-way places. In these cases, they make use of analog types.



Wired vs. Wireless


The most obvious difference between a wired and wireless security camera is the effort needed to set them up. However, what separates one from the other is how each gets its power.

Wired cameras are more reliable. They need wires to run along uninterrupted in inconspicuous places on the property. It's a good choice for homeowners who won't be moving the cameras often.

Wireless cameras are a lot easier to install. These are the best cameras often recommended for renters. It allows them to take their security system with them when they move.

If you have an outdated security camera system, consider upgrading to wireless. These camera systems are less easy to bypass, unlike traditional cameras.

However, the choice between the two will still depend on your personal preferences. Here's in-depth information between the two:


Wired Cameras

This type of camera is hardwired into your home to connect to your internet feed. Most installations need some effort to tidy up the wires. You'll need to run two separate cords: one goes to the power outlet and another to your internet router.

A wired camera has the following advantages:

  • Reliable connection with very few signal drops

  • Fewer recording issues caused by spotty internet

The big downside, though, is that it goes out when there's a power outage. You're safe if you have a standby generator during this critical period. Otherwise, you will not be able to check your property's security until the power goes back on.


Wireless Cameras

Wireless cameras do rely on an external power source, but connects to your WiFi to relay video clips. They often have a rechargeable battery installed in case of power failure.

This type of camera is typical in outdoor installations. Some models even come with solar panels, so you won't have to worry about power.

A wireless camera has several advantages over its wired counterpart:

  • Fewer cords to run

  • Easy to move to a different position

Choose wireless cameras if you have a strong Wi-Fi connection. Some signal interferences can have an impact on the camera's operation. If your Wi-Fi signal undergoes intermittent fluctuations, then this is not for you.



How Do ADT Wireless Security Cameras Work?


Now you have a basic knowledge of the vital components. How do they interact with each other in enhancing your business or home's security?

Once powered and connected to WiFi, your ADT wireless camera will send audio and video signals to your phone or cloud storage. What makes ADT special is its integration with the ADT mobile app. You can view footage from any location and watch clips in real-time or save them for later.

The ADT app offers a simple user interface. You can access footage at any time, even if you're not at home. You can control your security camera system even on-the-go to see who's at your door.

You can even talk to visitors through ADTs. ADT allows you to view live feed and switch between individual cameras in your home.


Frequently Asked Questions

Are you new to security cameras and how they work? Here are some common questions to help you choose the best security cameras for you.


How Long Do Security Cameras Record?

Yes, surveillance camera systems these days can record all the time. The video is usually stored on a hard drive within your property. Our ADT cameras will start recording once it detects movement and sends alerts to your phone.

If you're subscribed to a security provider, you can have your recordings sent offsite. VHS is no longer used as a storage device. Thus, there's no downtime recording the videos sent by your cameras.


Do You Need Wi-Fi for Home Security Cameras?

Wi-Fi has its own conveniences and an ADT wireless security camera will need a connection to work. However, it's not required to operate home security cameras. This allows you to live streaming capabilities via your internet-enabled mobile device.


Do All Outdoor Security Cameras Need Plugging In?

Not all outdoor cameras are dependent on a power outlet. Some have their own batteries, while others even have solar panels.

At ADT, we recommend choosing a video surveillance system that DOES plug directly into the outlet, that way, you don't need to worry about battery drain or whether your camera is connected.


Go Beyond Security Cameras in Ensuring Your Home's Safety


You now have significant knowledge of security cameras. Choosing the right one will be a cinch with your newfound confidence.

You can go further, though, by having a complete video security system. Contact us today, and our ADT Specialist will be more than happy to assist you.


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