What You Need to Consider
Many people decide to upgrade to HD security camera systems to improve their overall image quality. The first thing many people ask before taking the leap is: am I going to have to redo my entire system, or can I replace certain aspects? Unfortunately, there is no blanket answer here, it is dependent on the equipment you already purchased.
HD Camera Cables
The first thing you’re going to want to check are your cables. Some cables are able to transmit both analog and HD signals; however, some cheaper options are analog only. Further, some cables may require altering their maximum length or connectors. When upgrading to 1080p BNC cameras, if you previously used RG59 or RG6 coax cable you can use the same cable to run video from HD cameras. This includes all AHD, HD-TVI, HD-CVI an HD-SDI camera types. A special consideration to make to HD-SDI cameras is that the distance is typically limited to 200ft (AHD, HD-TVI and HD-CVI are able to run a RG59 cable the same distance for both HD and analog). An HD over coax video amplifier may also be used if you need to run the cable further distances. These devices also allow the use of a CAT-5 cable with video baluns to run AHD, HD-TVI and HD-CVI cameras.
Camera Power Supplies / Power Supply Boxes
Next, you need to consider your existing power supply box. Similar to analog, HD cameras either use a 12V DC or 24V AC power supply. Therefore, if you already have a 12V DC, purchase HD cameras that also run on 12V DC, and vice versa. It is also important to check that the amperage required by your new cameras is within the range supplied by the power supply box.
Hybrid SD / HD Security Camera DVRs
A hybrid DVR can be used to connect both analog and HD security cameras. This allows users to utilize both standard definition and high definition cameras on one DVR. Hybrid DVRs also allow the user to upgrade to HD more easily down the road. An upgrade will be required, however, if you do not have an existing hybrid DVR system.
Now you will need to determine whether or not you want to replace your current SD cameras or add to them with HD ones. If you are adding to your system you will need to ensure you have a hybrid DVR that has the ability to run both kinds of cameras.
4-in-1 Selectable HD over Coax Cameras
One final consideration to make is the use of a 4-in-1 selectable HD over coax camera. These are extremely flexible to install as they support four video models (typically: CCTV, AHD, HD-TVI and HD-CVI). These can be used with just about any DVR and many have a joystick to select the video mode. This is another great option for customers who may want to upgrade in the future as it provides a streamlined path to do so.