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What’s the Best Wireless Security Camera System

Wireless Security Camera System

Wireless security camera systems monitor your property utilizing a closed-circuit television camera. Contrary to popular belief, these types of systems are rarely completely wireless because it is fairly inefficient to have a system that works solely on battery power. The wireless systems may utilize a wire for a power supply; however, it does not use wires for transmitting signals back to the base station. Some wireless security systems do run on battery power only, but most individuals find that a main power supply with a backup battery is the most affordable and reliable system to go with. Even though these systems are not always completely wireless, they are much more versatile than older completely hardwired systems that require a wire to run from the camera to the base station to transmit data.

Why Choose a Wireless Security Camera System?

Aside from being much easier to install than some other camera systems there are additional benefits to installing a wireless security camera.

Wireless Cameras Offer More Versatility

Since there is no wiring leading from the camera to the base station on these cameras there is quite a lot of versatility as far as where they can be placed inside or outside the home. Also, they can be moved around if you decide that you don’t like the location of the camera. Remember cameras that are intended for outdoor use are not best suited for indoor use and vice-versa.

The Added Protection of a Working Surveillance Camera

There is the added benefit of having a camera focused security system present in your home. Having a camera system in the home helps deter burglary on a considerable degree, for example, statistics show that homes with any type of security system are 2.3 times less likely to be targeted by burglars than homes with no evidence of a security system. With that said, most alarm systems will come with a sticker and or a yard sign that should be placed in plain view because what good is a security system if no one knows that you have one? These days even the DIY wireless cameras come with stickers that can be placed in windows to warn intruders that the home is protected by video camera surveillance. Some people have attempted to use dummy cameras or fake stickers in their home window to deter burglars and while these strategies may work on occasion, if they do fail there will be much less evidence to prosecute your burglar.

Wireless Cameras for Rental Properties

Another added benefit of using a wireless security camera system in your home is that they are easily installed without having to run wires behind walls like hardwired systems often demand. Lack of intrusive labor make wireless systems the perfect option for people who are renting their home or apartment as well as for those who live in aging homes and do not want to disrupt the structure by drilling through walls to thread wiring. Due to the nature of wireless systems they can easily be placed on the wall with a single piece of mounting hardware, which results in minimal damage to the structure of the home. If you rent a property, it is always helpful to contact your landlord or rental company to inquire as to whether they have a preferred alarm system or alarm system company since generally a working alarm system will add to the value of a property.

Wireless Cameras Offer Less Detectable Protection

It may sound funny to include a lack of detectability as a positive aspect of a wireless security camera system particularly after we discussed the benefits of announcing your alarm system presence with a yard sign or window sticker. Some locations such as retail store fronts may advertise their security system but want to keep it out of plain view so that should they fall prey to a burglar their camera can capture the event. When retail locations place security cameras in plain view they can often be destroyed by burglars or have the wires cut in order to stop transmission. Wireless cameras are beneficial in this situation because they not only come without wires that can be cut, but they are also easily obscured because of their lack of wires. Some hardwired cameras can be seen from a distance away because of the wires that run from a section of the store to the camera, but without these wires it is much easier to conceal a camera from view.

Concerns Over Wireless Technology

When they first debuted, wireless security systems had quite a few flaws that left these systems open to corruption. The first concern was with systems that ran on battery power alone because every few months these systems would require a battery change and if that battery change was neglected then the security system would be rendered useless in the event of a burglary. The battery problem was resolved when companies began to utilize lithium batteries that allow for a security system to run for years before a battery change is necessary.

Another common concern with wireless systems is the susceptibility to interference. Whether interference is unintentional and comes from the baby monitor next door or whether it is intentional and comes from the pizza van outside your home that is actually a couple of burglars scoping out your property, either situation presents a problem. As technology has progressed wireless security systems have become increasingly reliable as better tuners and improved frequency usage have been introduced meaning that your wireless system is relatively unaffected by outside interference.

Analog Wireless Cameras

Analog wireless cameras are those that utilize radio frequencies to transmit video and audio signals, these types of cameras are not as popular as the digital wireless cameras for a few reasons.

Pros

  • One of the most affordable wireless security systems available
  • The signal is uniform so it can be picked up by another receiver placed throughout the home so you can pick up signals in different locations
  • Range of these systems is about 300 feet

Cons

  • Obstacles in the path of the camera will reduce the signal range
  • The radio frequencies used are easily interrupted since other household appliances use the same frequencies (microwaves, land line cordless phones, computer routers, etc.)
  • Tend to provide a much lower quality signal which equals poor quality transmission

Digital Wireless Cameras

Digital wireless cameras work much the same as modern technology by sending packets of digital information over high-bandwidth radio frequencies. Utilizing newer technology enables data to be sent much more securely and eliminates the possibility of interference from common household items.

Pros

  • No data leak, meaning you data won’t be broadcasted on your neighbor’s TV
  • Longer transmission range of 450 feet
  • Two-way communication process between the camera and receiver
  • Newer technology

Cons

  • Must be a direct line of sight between camera and receiver to get data passed completely
  • Not the most affordable

Wireless Security Camera Systems Are Not the End All and Be All

Certainly we all want to be able to offer the very best protection to our families and our home, but for some people that protection does not always lie in a wireless security camera system. It is up to you to determine whether this type of system meets your needs by doing your research and consulting professionals for their opinions on what type of security system would work best for you and your home. There are plenty more options to choose from and the wireless security system isn’t the answer for every household, for some an intricate network of security coverage provides a better solution, and for others door and window sensors may be all it takes to offer peace of mind.

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About Kimberly Kurimski

Kimberly is a graduate from Simpson College with a degree in Multimedia Journalism. She spent 4 1/2 months living in Thailand where she traveled throughout Southeast Asia. She enjoys watching movies, socializing with friends and family, and being active outside. She is an Apple lover and social media nerd.
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  • Anonymous

    Today, many of us are increasingly concerned about our personal safety and security, as well as that of our families. With the increased levels of crime, these concerns do seem justified. You have many choices as to how to react. Some people have bought guard dogs. Personally, I do not think that one would work, and it is probably not fair to the dog, either. Others have chosen to sleep with a bat next to their bed. I thought about this, but then figured that if the burglar was clever enough to get inside my home, they will probably be clever enough to take the bat before I even know what is going on! So, then I would have to deal with a burglar who is about to pummel me with my own weapon!

    Another idea is to choose some kind of modified security system. I am not interested in paying thousands of dollars to have some company come out and drill holes in my walls and run a bunch of wires all around. Fortunately, there are a number of systems today which do not require anything of the sort.

    A good place to start with this may be to consider outdoor security cameras. There are certainly a wide range of options here. You can even choose models which are wireless and can record their data right onto a hard drive. That certainly makes it easy to never miss anything important which happens around your home.

    Of course, you want to make sure that the cameras you choose are indeed truly weatherproof. Nothing is worse than getting a camera home and installed, then seeing it can get destroyed by the first hard rainstorm. However, if you are careful and do your research, there are a number of really good and durable outdoor cameras on the market today.

    Pay attention to the picture quality. This includes the range as well as the quality of the image. Personally, I think image quality is much more important than the range. I would much rather have a camera which produces a very clear image for 15 feet, than one which can show me a range of poor images for up to 50 feet. Although, if you want to know simply when someone is approaching your property, the combination of both types might not be a bad idea.

    I would also consider the ability of the camera to take images in the dark. Since most robberies happen during the night, this only makes sense. Many are equipped with a number of LED lights allowing for infrared and nighttime picture taking. Before buying, see a few images that are taken in totally darkness. Examine their clarity and reality. By reality I mean color distortion. Some cameras do not do very well translating dark colors, for example. Sometimes black ends up looking like green (or vice versa). Knowing this ahead of can be helpful if there is ever an incident which needs to be reported to the police.

  • Cams In Action

    I agree. Just want to say before buying any wireless camera it is good to confirm all advantages and disadvantages of that product.

  • Anonymous

    I was pleasantly surprised that the article seemed to speak to my concerns about wireless cameras.  The lithium battery solution answered the lingering question I was having about how the cameras could possibly operate on a functional level without wires, since it seems like relying on batteries for something that important would be a huge mistake.  I also was interested to learn about wireless interference and what steps are being taken by camera manufacturers these days to make sure that there are no more security holes like this.  However, the subject of wireless signal jamming could have also been addressed in this section, since it is a huge security issue as well, and has been popularized on television crime shows, too.

    The discussion of digital versus analog was quite helpful, and for my own needs I foresee an analog system serving well in at least a few areas, such as the areas outside around my patio and back door entrance.  I also appreciated the advice about doing your own research on the different security cameras that are available and what types are better than others.  Wiley salespeople definitely know all the tricks to sucker you into purchasing the wrong security system, so this article scores some bonus points for not making a sales pitch or seeming like an advertisement for a certain type of camera.

    However, I was confused a little bit about what the rating system was all about that was cited toward the end of the article.  Was this mentioning that a certain type or brand or model of camera was more highly rated than others, or simply that security cameras rated this way as a form of home security overall?  My opinion is that there is no security camera that is universally suited for everyone, and that among all the different models and brands available, there are likely to be a lot of different specialty niches to fit any need.  I also think, as I mentioned, that a security camera should be used in conjunction with another method of home security.  Paying attention to reviews, as directed in the article, is sound advice, especially since the reviews are provided by real users about their real experiences with the security cameras in general.  There are many reasons why you might put up security cameras, and perhaps certain types of camera have worked well for others for those very same reasons.  Having a listed criteria is key.

    This article makes a great reference piece and I was very pleased with the information that was provided, as I think I was given enough to make an informed decision regarding adding a wireless surveillance camera to my home security system.  Purchasing and installing a security camera is an important decision, and should be done right.

  • Anonymous

    You have a great way of explaining this topic.

    This article certainly provided some useful information and clarified a few points about the use of a wireless camera security system that I had lingering in my mind.  Interestingly, I was not aware that there were significant differences between wireless or standard camera systems, or that outdoor systems were significantly different than indoor systems.  It makes sense, though, to not want to run a lot of wires through your walls, whether or not your home is older.  Plus, some people may be in a situation like me in which you would like to install a security camera but you live in a condo and making modifications to the wiring system is not possible.

    It was also interesting to me that the article brought up the old ‘sticker trick’.  I heard of this a few months ago: Adding dummy a security system sticker to your window or a dummy security system sign on your lawn.  These ideas seem like they might prevent burglars, but more recent advice paints a more controversial picture of this.  Namely, security stickers do not prevent all burglars, although as stated in the article having a system and advertising that fact does reduce the likelihood of becoming a target for a potential burglar by two-thirds.  With the recession and other economic factors, burglary is on the rise across the nation, as well, and thieves are getting more desperate to target many types of homes that they may not have otherwise.  The point being, that you still might become the victim of a burglary even if you do have a security system sign displayed in your home, and if the sign is not backed up by an actual security system, you will not have any extra protection to help you catch the thief or recover your stolen goods.  Furthermore, a burglar may become more bold after entering one home displaying a sign that does not actually have a security system, making him or her believe that there is a better chance of not getting caught when he or she targets the next home for a burglary.

    To this end, having a security camera in place seems like it would better serve you as a homeowner if it were used in conjunction with some sort of alert or alarm system.  While I understand the merits pointed out in the article about having the camera hidden so that it will not be targeted or get disabled, if a burglar activates the camera to begin recording, but is not made aware that his or her actions are actually on camera, there is no incentive to stop the action.  This means you will still have the headache in the future of trying to recover all of your stolen valuables, identifying the burglar and hiring a lawyer to defend the case, and perhaps having to repair damage to your house or property.  An alarm or alert, however, will let the burglar know that there is a live security system in your home, and that the odds that he or she will be convicted are now much, much higher.  That plus an alert to the presence of a camera is a solid home security system for when you are away.