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Storage for video surveillance: A comprehensive look

Storage for video surveillance: A comprehensive look
This article was originally published in September and is now updated with a section on hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI).
This article was originally published in September and is now updated with a section on hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI).

Needless to say, video captured by security cameras must be properly stored. Storage, then, becomes a critical part in a video surveillance system. To further readers' understanding of storage for video surveillance, we’ve compiled this resource guide featuring exclusive articles, suppliers’ news and product information published on It’s our hope the guide will provide more insights into video surveillance storage and help readers make a more informed decision when selecting a storage solution.
Table of contents
Why is storage important for video surveillance
What storage device is best for video surveillance
Hyper-converged infrastructure
How to choose the right solution for video surveillance storage
On-prem or cloud storage for video surveillance
Featured solutions for video surveillance storage

Why is storage important for video surveillance?

Storage has gained importance due to an increasing amount of video data generated by video surveillance systems. More and more, cameras are going UHD, producing high-resolution video. At the same time, more end user entities, from governments to private businesses, are requiring longer video retention for forensic and investigative purposes. Further, with the dominance of AI, more video is needed to train AI systems to be more intelligent. All this contribute to increased demand for advanced and reliable storage solutions.

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What storage device is best for video surveillance?

The network video recorder (NVR) remains the most popular storage solution in video surveillance. Today’s NVRs come with better processing capability, are more reliable and ensure little data loss. With cloud gaining importance, NVRs now also have cloud capabilities. In terms of storage medium, the hard disk drive (HDD) is still the mainstream. Yet solid state drives (SDDs), which are smaller, faster and less energy-consuming, are also gaining ground.

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Hyper-converged infrastructure

More and more, storage has gone beyond the conventional hardware-centric approach. This is because increased video data is putting more pressure on traditional video recording infrastructure, which is typically racks of network video recording servers (NVRs). This hardware-centric approach is more susceptible to downtime, data loss, and degraded performance, and is complex and costly to manage at scale.
To solve these problems, more vendors are launching storage solutions using a software-centric approach. The Unified Surveillance Platform by Quantum, for example, replaces racks of NVR servers with a single unified compute and storage software platform for video recording and analytics. The software uses patented video data reduction techniques to record and store video data at the highest performance with the least amount of hardware required, allowing customers to host more than 10,000 cameras on one single system. This hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) approach to data protection and automatic failover across the entire cluster delivers the highest uptimes, practically eliminating data loss or downtime due to a failed component or NVR server. With USP, customers can go from racks of NVRs to one simple system that is easier to manage, more cost effective and can keep up with the rapid growth of video data.

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What solutions are there to meet users’ growing video storage and retention needs?


How to choose the right solution for video surveillance storage

Choosing the right solution for video surveillance storage can be based on various factors. One of them is the camera count at the end user entity. A video surveillance system with a small camera count (up to 32) inevitably needs a storage solution that’s different from one with a large camera count (500-1,000). When determining the amount of storage space needed, a storage calculator can be useful. According to Alastair McLeod, CEO of Veracity, the best and most accurate way to estimate the storage required is to use a calculator using the average bitrate per camera as an input – for example, a full HD camera at 30 frames per second and using H.264 compression will produce about 4 Mbits for a reliable high quality video stream.

On a related note, has a storage calculator page that provides the necessary resources for systems integrators who need storage or bandwidth calculation to make decisions about camera placements and lens requirements. Click here to go to the page.

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Storage in video surveillance: How to choose the best solution for you
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On-prem or cloud storage for video surveillance?

Oftentimes, users are faced with the choice of whether to store video on-premises or in the cloud. Each has its merits and disadvantages. On-premises storage solutions, while expensive, are owned by the end user and do not require high-speed and reliable Internet transmission. Cloud, on the other hand, eliminates the need for expensive equipment purchases but needs stable Internet for reliable data transmission. The cloud service provider will also charge a fee for storage. More and more, users are eying hybrid solutions so that, for example, the more recent video could be stored on-premises, while older footage may be archived in the cloud at a lower resolution. For those who find it difficult to choose between on-prem and cloud, hybrid may be a more viable alternative.

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VSaaS: Micron explains why it matters
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NVR vs. VSaaS: How to choose between them?


Featured solutions for video surveillance storage

Solutions for video surveillance storage are quite abundant in the market. Some stress they are AI-enabled. Some highlight their NDAA compliance. All in all, choosing the right storage solution depends on the user’s needs and requirements. Below we look at some of the solutions for video surveillance storage featured on
Hikvision iDS-9600NXI-I8/S DeepinMind Series NVR
Hikvision’s iDS-9600NXI-I8/S DeepinMind Series NVR features human body detection, incorporated with deep learning-based analysis to filter out false alarms. Up to 32-ch IP cameras can be connected, supported with up to 8 TB capacity for each HDD as well as H.265/H.265+/H.264/H.264+/MPEG4 self-adaptive.
Dahua EVS5016S 16-HDD Enterprise Video Storage

Dahua’s EVS5016S 16-HDD Enterprise Video Storage device is equipped with an Intel processor supported with max 320 IP camera inputs and max 640Mbps incoming/recording bandwidth. 16 HDDs, SATA, hot-swap are featured, with RAID 0/1/5/6/10/50/60/JBOD supported. A modular and cable-less design is also featured.
Raysharp RS-N5816HR-P/N5816GR-P NVR

Raysharp’s RS-N5816HR-P/N5816GR-P NVR features max. record bandwidth of 128 Mbps and recording resolution of 8MP, 5MP, 3MP, 2MP (1080P), 1.3MP (960P) and 1.0MP (720P). Display resolution supported include 1024*768, 1280*720, 1280*1024, 1440*900, 1920*1080, 2560*1440, and 3840*2160. 16 PoE ports are available on the device, with dimensions at 380*340*50mm.
3S Intel NVR server

Intel NVR servers offered by 3S are provided with the built-in processors with more than four cores and huge storage capacity, and can support the serial connection of multiple servers. Single server can simultaneously record and manage up to 128 IP cameras, stack multiple servers, and support more than 100,000 video streaming management functions.

TRASSIR’s MiniNVR 2216R-16P is a network video recorder for building CCTV systems. Up to 16 channels for up to 4K resolution are available for record, playback and display. The rear panel includes RJ-45 (PoE) for IP cameras, RJ-45 for Ethernet, USB 3.0, audio input/output, HDMI and 220V power supply.
Jovision JVS-ND9164-HZ 64CH 4K NVR

Jovision’s JVS-ND9164-HZ 64CH 4K NVR adopts the new Vstar GUI, which is easy to operate and run smoothly. It also supports 4K video output and adopts the new VStar GUI, which is easy to operate and run smoothly. It also supports intelligent coding VSmart, greatly reducing storage space. The device also features improved compatibility for HDD and supports 8x SATA max. of 10TB.
Webgate New NDAA compliant PoE NVR series 4/8/16ch

Webgate New Non-Hisilicon PoE NVR series is a 4/8/16ch PoE Network Video Recorder is NDAA-compliant, which is important if getting US government contracts is intended. The NVR enables real-time recording and playback simultaneously and supports max 4K UHD input/output, ONVIF Profile S, H.264/H.264+ dual codec and max 10TB HDD. It can also be integrated with specialized solutions such as alarms and home networks.

Product Adopted:
Digital Video Recording
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