Looking into IP Solutions

"Video over IP" is so popular these days, but what is behind it remains unknown to many users. Facing the ever changing new technology developments, everyone wants to stay on top of the game. The benefits of IP solutions and the ways to have the most effective system migration are what users need to know. Dieter Dallmeier, the founder, President and CEO of Dallmeier electronic, talks about what he believes to be a successful system migration from analog to IP.

"Video over IP" is data transmission via network. Knowing the weakness of IP compared to analog technology is important for the installation of a reliable IP system that has increased flexibility and scalability in comparison to analog solutions.

There are two main weaknesses in IP video solutions: server failures and breakdowns in data transmission. These are common issues that happen quite often in IT systems. Problems caused by these failures, such as emails being sent at a lower speed, are often overlooked because they do not create critical problems for the overall system. However, if the same problems occur in video surveillance, it would result in unclear images or even create gaps in the recordings. Since quality is the top priority in video surveillance, it is important to remember that even though individual components, such as network cameras, are crucial in developing a powerful IP solution, the overall reliability of the system determines the ultimate success of the installation.

Turnkey Solution and Reliability
Since we know that the overall system reliability is the key for a successful installation of IP system, selecting a system that best fits the user's needs can further ensure user satisfaction. Users can certainly build their own systems by purchasing products from different vendors. However, in the long run, the best system is the one with dovetailed components that are ideally adjusted to each other with the same developing team. Users with just one single system supplier can avoid potential hassles from problems with compatibility and maintenance. To have just one single supplier can ensure guaranteed customer service. A reliable technical support team is, arguably, what a mixed patchwork system would not have.

Furthermore, to form a complete system, all individual components need to be thoroughly tested in advance in order to guarantee the best interoperability. This requires a considerable effort from the users if each of the components in the systems were purchased individually from different vendors. Should any problem occur, nobody will feel fully responsible as the camera manufacturer will blame the servers and the recorder supplier will see the cameras at fault. In the end, the customer would be left without any real contact person. Therefore, to be independent from the suppliers also means no company would likely be responsible for any potential system problem.

Single manufacturers, such as Dallmeier, would discuss the system requirements with customers and subsequently build a complete tailor-made system that is reliable. Under careful testing, all individual components work perfectly together with guaranteed customer service and support backups. Other than that, the system itself is open for integration with third-party components or other complete security systems.

Customized IP Solutions
There is not a single universal IP video surveillance system that fits every installation site. IP system is always a tailor-made solution based on the customer's needs. The performance requirements of the system and the already existed infrastructure need to be clarified before the system installation. The required structure of the video system may be a small installation with just two cameras, a mid-size system or a large-scale project with thousands of cameras. There really is no standardized solution; therefore, to be customer-oriented is a must for every solution company.

Whether each of those solutions would be a pure IP solution, it is depend on the circumstances and needs of different facilities. Whereas some new installations are complete IP system, in many cases, users already have an existing analog system installed. The main issue for these deployment sites is to make the existing infrastructure IP ready. Therefore, the IP solution must be backward compatible for analog components to allow a cost effective system migration.

That is why often hybrid solutions are chosen. Since hybrid solutions can combine both analog and IP technologies, users with hybrid solution can gradually migrate from analog to IP systems in a more cost effective and time efficient way.

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