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According to IHS Market, it is estimated that there are over 60 million security cameras in the United States, and other reports say these cameras capture more than four billion hours of footage per week. Over the last decade, IP camera technology has dominated the conversation as it has provided users with a broad offering of enhanced image quality and features. With a large percentage of existing security systems relying on analog, many end users looking for high definition (HD) video quality have been forced to take on a complete system overhaul. Infrastructure Overhaul For HD Video To make the switch, customers would need to change everything, from cameras to hardware to wiring– not to mention the lengthy installation process that would ensue. IP cameras also require higher Internet speeds and more cloud space. Whether constrained by budget, bandwidth or storage, many end users have been unable to adopt this new video surveillance method.Thanks to technological advancements within the security industry, HD over Coax offers a viable solution for integrators and end users alike Thanks to technological advancements within the security industry, HD over Coax offers a viable solution for integrators and end users alike. By utilising the current Coaxial cables, this offering yields high definition video, while requiring minimal infrastructure changes and is an optimal surveillance choice for security customers. Plus, with new advancements and updates being made frequently to this technology, there is a solution for every security need. The enhanced alternative of HD over Coax has been warmly welcomed in the security industry, thanks to its simple solutions and ever-evolving features. Many new analog HD cameras are “plug and play,” able to connect directly to existing Coaxial cables. This eliminates the need for a complete system change, creating cost-savings for the end user and an enhanced video quality offering. Easy Solutions For HD Video As a result, integrators can cost-effectively upgrade their customer’s surveillance solution while using their legacy infrastructure, making it an attractive option for end users and an easy sell for dealers. Latency in video is another common issue with network-based camera systems, where even the slightest delay in video surveillance can hinder security response HD over Coax cameras themselves are always expanding and evolving to meet a wide array of security needs. With the introduction of fisheye and multi-sensor cameras, users now have a multitude of coverage options, not to mention the introduction of 4K bringing resolution options to the same level as IP. Some newer technologies are even touting 4K cameras paired with 4K digital video recorders (DVRs) made specifically for analog systems. Longer cables grant transmission for up to 1600 feet, double the distance of standard analog solutions, and triple that of IP systems. This single cable is able to transmit both HD video and audio. Recently, broadcast quality audio over Coax has become available in limited models, a substantial improvement over older analog technology, which was unable to transmit audio. Stopping Video Delay Latency in video is another common issue with network-based camera systems. Even the slightest delay in video surveillance can hinder security response. IP cameras are forced to compress and packetize their video for transmission. The outcome of this is a reduced number of images per video, which in turn causes delay. HD over Coax on the other hand, delivers an unlimited amount of HD images in real time, with smooth motion and impressive clarity. Additionally, the point-to-point transmission delivers uncompressed video free of lag. Another touted benefit is that, unlike IP networked cameras, analog systems provide a more secure video transmission. With so much sensitive information housed on a businesses’ network, adding another point of network access through an IP camera can create concerns for cyber security risks. HD over Coax delivers an unlimited amount of HD images in real time, with smooth motion and impressive clarity Preventing Network Hacking With HD over Coax, the physical connections between the camera and DVR prevent network hacking. By keeping the video surveillance system offline, security professionals are able to direct their attention to the physical threats at hand, rather than having to focus on deterring cyber security risks. One of the primary difficulties of deploying HD video solutions is the fact that many older systems utilize a wide variety of HD standards and platforms. To make matters more complicated, after HD over Coax was brought to market, manufacturers raced to create their own version of this technology. Today, the most popular proprietary standards are HD-CVI, HD-TVI and AHD. However, integrators and customers found that attempting to manage multiple HD technologies proved to be near impossible.Integrators and customers found that attempting to manage multiple HD technologies proved to be near impossible Diversifying Surveillance Through One DVR To combat these issues, manufacturers have introduced products with more flexibility to their portfolios. One example of this is the penta-brid DVR which grants the ability to seamlessly integrate multiple technologies deployed across one application. This means that systems with diverse camera brands and technologies, such as a mix of HD-CVI, HD-TVI, AHD, analog or IP, can be connected through one DVR. For many end users with legacy analog systems, penta-brid DVRs give them greater freedom to choose between a variety of solutions, rather than being limited to one option. With video resolution increasing, the space needed to store the footage is similarly rising. Penta-brid technology has been able to adapt to these evolving needs, giving users ample storage space to house the HD and 4K surveillance video with some of the newest models including H.265 compression. HD Casino Surveillance Made Simple For casinos, HD images are critical for identifying unauthorized personnel and unlawful behaviours to create a safe environment for guests and staff While HD over Coax is beneficial to many end users and integrators, those in the casino and hospitality markets find it crucial. With a combination of high profile guests, large amounts of cash on hand, constant crowds and strict industry regulations, reliable video surveillance is a must. Deploying new IP systems comes at a stiff price. When looking to upgrade their video surveillance, casinos must also be mindful of the installation process. When moving to an IP-based system, ripping out old wires and replacing them with new is the standard practice. This practice can be both disruptive and costly, not to mention gaming regulations require casino activities be monitored at all times so a complete system shutdown would result in revenue loss. This cost can be hard to justify, especially when the current legacy analog system remains in working condition with only the lower image resolution to date it. For these scenarios, the most cost-effective option is to leverage the legacy infrastructure, replace the existing cameras with new devices, and reap the benefits that HD video has to offer without any lapse in security. For casinos, HD images are critical for identifying unauthorized personnel and unlawful behaviours to create a safe environment for guests and staff. HD over Coax cameras now offer the same resolution as IP cameras with a plug and play approach, that cuts down on expense without sacrificing quality. For businesses and applications that are unable to adopt IP technology, whether it be cost or time prohibitive, HD over Coax now features most of the same benefits IP has to offer without breaking the bank. By providing clear images in real time, maximizing existing infrastructure, and affording cyber security benefits, HD over Coax provides an attractive solution for many end users and integrators.
When people think of control rooms, images from James Bond movies or intense action stories come to mind. What they fail to realise is the incredible level of ergonomics, technology, precision and craftsmanship required to create a top-notch command and control room. “These are rooms of complex functionalities, where hundreds of elements must be integrated and function in sync,” says Jim Coleman, National Sales Manager, AFC Industries. Professional teams from several different industries must coordinate every single detail in order to ensure that functionality occurs each and every time. Reconfigurable Furniture For Control Rooms AFC Industries is one company that specialises in equipping control rooms for security and other applications. AFC Industries was established in 1994 as a family-owned business that focuses on the design and construction of ergonomic products. Their height-adjustable units guarantee the right height for standing desks as well as traditional sitting levels. The company produces an array of Command and Control ergonomic security consoles and mounting solutions. Modular racking systems facilitate efficient storage of electronic and audio-visual equipment. As technology changes, older traditional consoles are no longer a necessity. Many organizations instead are choosing to use lighter, less costly, reconfigurable furniture that allows more flexibility. Command Centers need to be able to reconfigure the space at will. Because most systems are housed in secure data centers, users should be able to quickly move their positions by relocating their workstations, utilising different network connections. Simple control room features, like those addressing lighting or operator comfort, can make the difference in a correct or incorrect decision during a crisis Emergency Operations Centers A positive trend driving the market for control rooms is an increase in emergency operations centers (EOCs), says Randy Smith, President of Winsted. “Everybody is concerned about what happens in an emergency,” says Smith, and the centers are popping up as a tool for emergency preparedness. It’s another environment where sit-stand work stations are the rule. Winsted’s product lines include stock modular and customized elements in good-better-best categories – from basic to lots of “bells and whistles;” jobs can be configured from modular elements or customized as needed. Customized Control Rooms For Seamless Operation There is a lot at stake in control room design: Lives can depend on how effectively a control room functions in an emergency. Control rooms should seamlessly accommodate both everyday occurrences and crisis situations, says Matko Papic, Chief Technology Officer of Evans Consoles. Better-operating control rooms can increase efficiency and reduce and/or mitigate risk. Simple control room features, like those addressing lighting or operator comfort, can make the difference in a correct or incorrect decision during a crisis. Addressing operator comfort can reduce the possibility of workers’ compensation claims. End users are seeing multiple benefits of creating a better operating environment, better sightlines, more comfort and attention to ergonomics. As a fully integrated control room solutions provider, Evans Consoles approaches the needs of a control room environment beginning in the conceptual/operational planning stage. They consider broad issues such as how information will be processed, the interface between technology and operators, and the cognitive and physical interactions of operators – understanding that these factors drive the layout and function of control rooms. After analyzing tasks to be performed in the environment, Evans lays out the consoles to meet those needs. Rather than a predesigned solution, each installation is tailored around a specific application. Read part 2 of our Control Rooms series here
Many end-users shell out the cash to acquire the newest high-end devices, plug in, and expect to be wowed A well-developed surveillance system can give a single security guard the power to see what otherwise might take a hundred pairs of eyes to see. But what happens when all the components are all connected and powered up, and the resulting image on the screen is, well, indiscernible, or, at the very least, terribly pixelated? Many end-users shell out the cash to acquire the newest high-end devices, plug in, and expect to be wowed. Often enough, however, what they see on the screen is not what they were expecting – and they wonder what they just paid for. In a good high-definition system, what factors actually create the best image quality? With so many variables involved, from the camera’s lens to the imaging algorithms to the monitor resolution – just to name the obvious ones – how do system integrators achieve the best on-screen images? The Lens The first component to handle light from an object, this may be the one most taken for granted in cameras of any sort. (Just try scratching or cracking one and you’ll agree.) In the days of analog cameras, it seemed that any old lens would do just fine. However, as the technology inside cameras evolved and more powerful sensors (more pixels) became available, engineers and programmers demanded more from lenses. Moreover, intelligent video content analyses would be impossible without high-accuracy lenses.In what way do lenses impact the image quality? The key factor here is light transmission. The quality of light passing through the lens itself will forever be critical to the quality of image reproduced. A lens made using ultra-precision molding aspherical technology achieves more accurate color, better light, and clearer images. Multilayer broadband anti-reflection coating further maximises a lens's light transmission while minimizing the residual reflection of light on the surface of each optical lens. Variables involved include the camera’s lens, the imaging algorithms and the monitor resolution When it comes to fabricating a megapixel lens that hits the mark, the materials used and the processes by which lenses are produced are the two most critical criteria. The materials most often used to create lenses are glass and specialized plastics. An HD lens made of ultra-low-dispersion optical glass – which, by using dispersion characteristics that are different from those of conventional optical glass – will deliver better HD performance. Machine-automated lens production using specialized plastics results in high output for camera producers, and the lenses produced are more uniform in design and quality. For an HD vari-focal lens, its image quality depends largely on the precision of the cam. The cam rotates to drive the zoom and focus lens groups forward and backward for a smooth continuity of focal length and adjustment of the focal point. A lack of precision with the cam inevitably causes an offset or tilt of the lens' optical axis during zooming and focusing, leading to a serious loss of image quality. Lens production is a delicate balancing act. The slightest errors or imperfections will be very noticeable when tested Lens production is a delicate balancing act. The slightest errors or imperfections will be very noticeable when tested. The features of a lens that affect image resolution, clarity, and contrast must be perfect. Achieving uniformity of image resolution at the center and the edges of a lens requires high-precision machinery. And once a lens has been properly crafted, the assembly of the camera, the lens housing materials, and the alignment of the optical axis demand utmost accuracy. To put it mildly, quality control must be rigorous. Image Signal Processing As light passes through the lens, the sensor captures it and converts it to data. Raw RGB data is transmitted by the camera sensor and undergoes Image Signal Processing (ISP) such as noise reduction, white balance, WDR, curve correction and color correction, etc. The data is then transformed to true colors for each pixel point, for people to see images that look “normal” to the human eye. It is the Image Signal Processing that defines the final image quality on the screen. Collecting data in different conditions is vital, for instance, outdoor data should be analyzed with natural light on days with sun, overcast, rain, and fog, at dawn, at dusk, and so on. Similarly, when using cameras equipped with infrared sensors, testing the IR light signals in various conditions is necessary as well. Actual image performance depends upon variables such as low light illumination, signal to noise ratio, dynamic range of light, and more. ISP algorithms aim at increasing the signal data and decreasing noise. Cameras with Wide Dynamic Range (WDR) will yield improved video imaging with both background and foreground objects in high contrast or high-backlight environments, maximising the amount of detail in brighter and darker areas in one field-of-view. In scenes with low contrast and low light, the sensors deliver digital image signals and at the same time send some amount of digital noise that directly hinders image clarity. Three-dimensional digital noise reduction (3D DNR) removes unwanted artifacts from an image, reducing graininess. Where cloudy weather poses a challenge, auto-defogging technology helps to identify the density of fog or rain with gray-white color ratio analysis, and imbues images with true color reproduction. Ramping up the megapixels and frame rates yields great video, but also results in more bandwidth used and more storage occupied Matching Megapixels To Image Quality When the factors mentioned above line up well, correlating cameras and monitors creates the best viewing experience. When a high definition camera is in place, a monitor with a high resolution will display images much more clearly. But if the monitor’s resolution is low, it will not deliver the high-quality images expected – or possible – from that HD camera. For an 8 MP camera, for instance, users do best to apply monitors with 4K × 2K resolution. Though common sense, this deserves to be mentioned because users might decide to upgrade their systems with 4K monitors, but with perhaps 1.3 MP cameras installed. In such a scenario, there’s no guarantee the on-screen image quality will automatically improve. Managing Data And Bandwidth In terms of a complete, high definition surveillance system, when the right factors come together and the calibrations are set, image quality – even in a standard HD 1080p setup – can be extremely good. The final piece of the puzzle is managing the data. Ramping up the megapixels and frame rates yields great video, but also results in more bandwidth used and more storage occupied. Squeezing bandwidth threatens image quality and clarity, but keeping ample room for signal transmission and storage will eventually increase the overall cost for customers. Is it possible for integrators to optimize their customer’s system and, at the same time, stay within budget constraints? Luckily, it can be done. Squeezing bandwidth threatens image quality and clarity, but keeping ample room for signal transmission and storage increases the overall cost for customers To do this, a more efficient video encoding solution would allow an improvement in compression efficiency of 40–50% over H.264. Improvements to algorithms that are adaptive to a particular scene give users control over bitrate. Another option would be to start recording video only when an event triggers an alarm, since most security guards are primarily concerned with moving objects rather than a scene’s generally stagnant background. This intelligently helps optimize bandwidth and storage consumption. Another method is to use a single panoramic or fisheye camera in place of several HD cameras for coverage – the reduced number of security devices will reduce bandwidth demands and the rate of storage consumption as well. Getting The Best Image Quality Now let’s put this all together. Naturally, integrators and users will refer to their product specs to understand features and functions, fine-tuning each component for best results. Also, as suggested above, users should select an HD camera comprehensively in terms of lens performance, pixels, image quality, and overall system compatibility and performance. Next, matching the backend device and management platform should be carefully considered in a complete security system. Installing equipment that has been engineered for a given scene is a must, along with strategising how to get the most coverage out of the lowest number of cameras. Finally, product quality, warranty, price, and on-going customer service are all important factors that customers should take into account as well.
Products are the building blocks of the security industry. Historically much of the industry’s sales effort has been focused on highlighting product features and functionality. At the end of the day, however, an end user is less interested in the performance of any individual system component than in the system as a whole. Lately, the industry has embraced a changing sales approach by emphasizing systems rather than products. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the benefits of a transition from selling security products to selling security solutions?
MOBOTIX is making the next big advance in intelligent video technology, furthering its mission statement of going ‘Beyond Human Vision’. By launching its new MOBOTIX 7 open solution platform and the M73 high-end camera that uses it, the company is once again cementing its position as a pioneer in this technology. Supported by artificial intelligence and application solutions based on deep learning, the new generation of video cameras not only enables an unlimited set of functions; it also opens up brand new possibilities far beyond traditional video security. This means that the MOBOTIX systems remain fully reliable and secure, as cybersecurity and data security continue to have the highest priority. New Standards For Intelligent Video Technology The MOBOTIX 7 is by far our most powerful decentralized and secure modular IoT-video system" The M7 system platform and the M73 camera were presented to over 500 international technology and sales partners, as well as representatives of the press, at this year's MOBOTIX Global Partner Conference (GPC) in Mainz. "The MOBOTIX 7 is by far our most powerful decentralized and secure modular IoT-video system based on deep learning modules, and sets new standards for intelligent video technology," explained Hartmut Sprave, Chief Technology Officer at MOBOTIX AG, in his opening speech. "Our hardware and software are 'Made in Germany', and tailor-made camera apps provide limitless possibilities for expanding the MOBOTIX 7. This will revolutionize numerous IoT processes — not only for us, but for our technology partners and customers in various markets too," says Sprave. The MOBOTIX camera apps can detect when a building is in danger of becoming overcrowded Future market requirement Even at its launch, the MOBOTIX 7 already comes with pre-installed apps that are verified and certified by MOBOTIX and meet the highest standards in terms of cyber security. These apps are supported by artificial intelligence (AI) and deep learning, and cover a significant number of industry-specific, individual requirements. It is also possible for partners, customers or users to develop and program their own solutions and have these certified by MOBOTIX. "This means that the range is growing dynamically in response to customers' needs, so virtually any current and future market requirement can be met with a tailor-made application installed directly on a camera featuring the MOBOTIX 7 platform," explained Sprave. AI-based analytics One of the MOBOTIX camera apps can detect when a building is in danger of becoming overcrowded The new MOBOTIX video system is also suitable for our customers' very particular and individual challenges in specific areas: For example, one of the MOBOTIX camera apps can detect when a building is in danger of becoming overcrowded. In this case, the camera immediately and automatically triggers a diversion for any further persons wishing to enter the building, thus reliably preventing accidents and panic. By combining image sensors and environmental sensors with AI-based analytics, industrial enterprises can increase their production efficiency and improve fire prevention measures, for example. The object-based recognition of individual road users, such as trucks, cars or people, and their behavior, such as stopping, accelerating and so on, is enabled for traffic and transport applications. The information that is immediately available can improve the road safety for drivers and passengers, while enabling other road users to continue moving in an unobstructed flow. Video management software "Together with our partners, we aim to develop a multitude of other solutions based on artificial intelligence and deep learning to help predict events and facilitate the early introduction of effective countermeasures aimed at protecting the environment, buildings, systems, people or animals," said Sprave, the Chief Technology Officer. MOBOTIX offers a unique platform and thus facilitate the search for global partner network Partner Expo — Presentation of the Newest Partner Solutions and Technological Alliances In line with the motto of the GPC 2019—‘Evolution. It Continues With You’—and across a space of more than 200 square meters, 19 MOBOTIX technology and solution partners from the Partner Society are presenting their industry-specific and cross-industry complete solutions. These solutions cover the fields of industry solutions, video management software, IT infrastructure, AI-based video analysis and much more. Together with the Partner Society, MOBOTIX offers a unique platform and thus facilitate the search for global partner network by using intelligent components for individual requirements. MOBOTIX camera apps can detect when a building is in danger of becoming overcrowded Smart video technologies Artificial Intelligence and Deep Learning Pave the Way for Smart Video Technologies In his keynote speech, Thomas Lausten, CEO of MOBOTIX AG, highlighted the fact that camera functions based on artificial intelligence and deep learning are becoming increasingly important: "With Konica Minolta, we have a partner that provides leading technology. We also collaborate with other leading companies and institutions in research when it comes to artificial intelligence." We offer customers around the world access to applications that are perfectly tailored to their requirements" Thanks to the MOBOTIX system now being more open and our collaboration with strategic partners, the video security market is being expanded to include new solutions for a wide range of industries. "By developing and marketing specialized apps, we offer customers around the world access to applications that are perfectly tailored to their requirements. The profit models resulting from this new technology will open up almost unlimited opportunities for us and our partners in the market," predicted Lausten. Highest cyber security standards "When we unveiled the MOBOTIX 7 system platform and the once more ONVIF-conformant M73 camera, the feedback we received from our technology partners was overwhelming," Lausten was pleased to announce, adding that MOBOTIX expects to make many more innovative developments in intelligent applications that can be marketed worldwide. "With the MOBOTIX 7, we are launching one of the best IoT platforms for apps on the market. It meets the requirements of a wide variety of industries," says CEO Lausten. "Thanks to the MOBOTIX 7, the M73 and all subsequent IoT camera models will have no limits. It goes without saying that protecting our customers' data remains our top priority in all of these endeavors — and as you would expect, the M73 also meets the world's highest cyber security standards." Read more about MOBOTIX 7 here.
ISC East continues to flourish as the Northeast’s largest security trade show. Focused on the big Tri-State market and overall Northeast sector vs. the flagship ISC West event in Las Vegas in the spring, the International Security Conference & Exposition at New York’s Javits Center will be held Nov. 20 and 21. “Anybody who has been to the show has commented and seen the growth,” says Mary Beth Shaughnessy, Event Director, ISC Events at Reed Exhibitions. Ninety new exhibitors When the show opens, there will be around 90 new exhibitors, including Gunnebo, Mobotix, Liftmaster, Cypress Integration Solutions, SAFR from Real Networks and Security Brands. Because it is a regional show, some large companies have smaller exhibits that feature their local and regional personnelLarger exhibitors at the show include Brooklyn Low Voltage Supply (distributor), Axis Communications, DoorKing Inc., NAPCO Security Technologies, and All American Monitoring. Because it is a regional show, some large companies have smaller exhibits that feature their local and regional personnel eager to meet with security professionals from the Northeast corridor. ISC East will be co-located with the Infosecurity ISACA North America Expo and Conference. The combination provides a comprehensive approach to physical and cyber security products and services. Rapid growth in past three years The audience at ISC East is unique – about 90% of attendees do not attend ISC West. The show has seen rapid growth in the past three years, and attendees report a new energy and passion among exhibitors and attendees. By every measure, the show will be bigger than last year, while maintaining the intimate, smaller vibe of a regional show. A “Crack the Tap” cocktail reception will be held at the end of the first day on the show floor. A charity activity on the ISC East show floor will be presented in partnership with Mission 500, an organization that works to serve the needs of children and communities in crisis. At the Mission 500 booth which will be adjacent to the Main Stage, each exhibition attendee will be invited to create a “care package” of essential hygiene items that will be delivered to children and families in need, in partnership with Volunteers of America - Greater New York. Attendees may write a note of encouragement to be included in the package they assemble. Event will highlight security startups A Nov. 20 (Wednesday) session at ISC East will highlight startup companies in a format reminiscent of television’s “Shark Tank.” Four finalists will take to the main stage and provide a seven-minute pitch about their new product or service. After the “Tech Tank” presentations, audience members vote live on their mobile app for their top choice, and the winner will be announced during the “Crack the Tap” cocktail reception.Four finalists will take to the main stage and provide a seven-minute pitch about their new product or service “It’s a program that allows attendees to see and hear about cutting edge technologies,” says Nicole Miller, Senior Conference Manager, ISC Security Events. The four finalists, chosen from more than 40 exhibitor submissions, are Arrow Labs’ MIMS Smart Watch for mobile incident management; Cepton Technologies’ Helius Smart LiDAR System; SAFR from RealNetworks’ Facial Recognition system, and ZeroEyes’ Weapons Detection and Active Shooter Mitigation Platform. New partnership with ASIS New York Beginning in 2020, ISC East will be combined with the ASIS New York chapter’s annual conference and expo, which was held in May this year. Starting next year, the events will be rolled into one industry-wide expo and education event geared to serving the total security industry in the tri-state area (New York, New Jersey and Connecticut). In 2020 there will be an enhanced education program along with the combined event next fall. In recognition of the new partnership, ISC East is involving the ASIS NYC chapter in this year’s show, too, with a booth on the show floor, and promotional logos and signage. The ASIS chapter will have a table at the SIA Honors Night event on Nov. 20. “We are really involving them this year to show we are working together and partnering going forward,” says Shaughnessy.
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