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genner 04-14-2009 01:45 PM

Analog Vs. Digital Cameras
I'm not sure if this is the right forum but here it goes...

So i'm interested in getting this video system by where it uses Power over ethernet cameras. These are not IP cameras but instead they just use CAT5 wires to carry power ing and signal.
Now the thing is is that I hate to be stuck with having to purchase their cameras. I called a vendor and they said you'd have to use their cameras because they use special wiring. meaning I can just buy any cameras that uses CAT5s and plug them in.

So now I'm wondering if i can use any analog video security cameras and I should be fine right? I'd just have to find which pair of wires in the ON-Q systems that uses power and signal and wire them accordingly to the analog camera right?

Ultrarunner2017 04-14-2009 03:57 PM

No, you cannot use analog cameras with this system. Unless I am mistaken, this is a digital system. The cameras don't have to be IP to be digital.
If it were analog, the output would be 75 ohms, and require coaxial cable (RG59 or RG62).

IMO, your best bet would be to use web cameras, (standard IP) either wired (using CAT5E, etc) or wireless (not as secure as wired of course).
If you don't want to tie up a computer with the system, buy a low-end box, install Win XP Home, and use a KV/M switch to connect to your regular computer system so you don't have to buy a separate monitor (this assumes your monitor has an analog (VGA) input).

Yes, it is more convenient to have a single cable running from the control to the camera, as most web cams require a 115VAC outlet nearby to power them, but consider the cost of expansion on a proprietary system like this.

What do you want to do with this system? Is is a simple video monitor, or do you want to integrate it with a whole-house security system?


genner 04-14-2009 05:07 PM

Hey KE2KB thanks for the reply.

Well here's what I'm hoping to achieve...

So ideally I'd like to have perhaps 3-4 cameras around the exterior of the house. Then in the inside of the home, I'd like to have maybe 2 or 3 locations where I'd have a LCD monitor that can view those camera at any point in time.

So i'm kind of curious...with this ON-q system, what makes their camera so proprietary if they run over CAT5? I'm thinking perhaps in the CAT5 cable they're just probably using some pair of wires for signal and another for power. So I'm hoping I can take some sort of analog camera and use the CAT5 cable to splice up the signal and power for it.

If you have any other suggestions that can serve my purpose brand or other methods please let me know. I'm all open for ideals. Oh and a DVR type recording thing may be considered as well.

Ultrarunner2017 04-14-2009 08:14 PM

Hi genner;

Let me start with the cameras.
An analog camera must have a 75 ohm matched impedance cable between its output and the monitor. This must be a coaxial cable. Cat5 or any other twisted pair cable will not work. The signal will simply disappear, and if any of it does reach the monitor, the impedance mismatch will be so bad that what you see will be useless.

I suspect that the on-q system is outputting a digital signal, thus it will work fine on CAT5 cable just like your computer network, but still it will not be readable by your computer network card or any other monitor.
A manufacturer can come up with whatever method of encoding and decoding the digital signal so that only their equipment will work together.

I don't know how much you want to spend on your system.
You could buy the on-q system and any additional cameras from them, or you could design your own system; analog or digital.

If you use analog cameras, you will need to run coaxial cable from each camera to a switching system of some sort, then from there to your monitors.
If you want to be able to control which camera you are viewing from any monitor, you will need a fairly sophisticated system for remotely switching the cameras. The switching center would control everything.

As for getting power to the cameras, it is quite possible that you could find analog cameras that get their power over the coaxial line.
Of course, the switching system (the main control unit) would have to supply this power. The system uses inductors (chokes) and capacitors at each end to separate the power from the video signal. This is very common with radio antenna systems, where the pre-amp is located at the antenna.

Personally, I would opt to use web cameras. You can get ones with the resolution you need. You would connect them using Cat5e cable, or get wireless ones, and a wireless router/access point.

For monitors, you could use a low-end Windows computer and low cost LCD monitor, or you could use a notebook computer.
Another advantage with the web-cams is that you could go completely wireless if you wanted to.

I'm not sure what you will find in analog cameras. You would need analog monitors as well. These must be the CCTV type, and not computer monitors, as computers VGA is not compatible with CCTV signals. CCTV is just standard analog video. Again, these signals must be fed over coaxial cable, 75 ohms (RG62, RG59).

If you want to go all out, you could have a complete security system installed by professionals. Then you don't have to worry about how it works. But of course that will cost you $$.

I am not directly familiar with security systems, but know enough about computers, networking, and video/audio to understand how things work<g>


genner 04-15-2009 03:14 AM

Hello KE2KB,

Thanks for replying back to my issue.

So I guess analog camera won't be ideal for my situation as I am looking for some sort of compactness with the monitor part and not having to deal with power/coax... etc...

So now I'm wondering since you mentioned webcameras are the quality in picture quality resolution as good and digital cameras non web versions?

Also is it possible for my purpose(4 cams and 3 lcd monitors) to use them without having to have a computer running all the time?

Ultrarunner2017 04-15-2009 02:06 PM

I would think you could get a web camera with good enough resolution for what you need, but I'm not sure what the cost would be VS analog camera.
I cannot think of any way around having a dedicated "box" running Windows or Mac OS to handle the cameras and displays.
Perhaps you should check out a forum dedicated to this type of product.


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