Milwaukee Area - Help me upgrade... :)

MCS Tech

n3wb
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Hey Guys - I joined this site last night and have already been researching all the forms for about 8 hours, as it seems never ending.
I read a lot of the WiKi and of course the Cliff Notes as I didn't want to come on here and start asking simple basic things that may've been asked 100x before.

So I have 2 nest outdoor cameras that covers by back yard, but nothing in the front, and I had thought about another Nest... but I'm now going to switch to an IP based system.
I use to only have 1 nest camera (on the house overlooking the parking area) but I had a car burglary at night and when I saw the footage and zoomed in that camera was too far away and useless, so I bought another one and put it closer (on the garage).

I love the motion alerts and the GUI of the nest products, but of course I have not used anything else so what do I compare to ? and then I read about Reolink and it sounded great with the alerts and I added a (4) 4k reolink package to my amazon cart and thought I was done, but another video explains that Reolink had like only a 80% accuracy rate and a lot of missed events compared to BI and other programs and that all led me here.

Im an IT guy and I work with Access control and and intrusion alarms in my daily job but never any camera stuff, I also already have a Synology NAS ds213j its old and faithful.
Im attaching 6 pics of my current camera setup, but i'm looking for better and also want to add a camera or 2 in the front area.

Heres what I've already noticed through my research on the forum. Why should I get another nest subscription camera and pay more $$ to nest, I think they are great for the alerts but I also do not know and never have know about missing alerts. Seems like Dahua and HikVision are some of the top dogs in (IP POE) cameras but they have a lot of 3rd party rebranded names and it feels like a ford or chevy conversation.

My Nest FOV is 130 degrees which gives me a wider view than I care about, I see the neighbors garage and his neighbors garage but in crap detail and thus kinda useless - I zoom up on my car park area and I lose quality rapidly - the nest is a 1/3" 3MP sensor - I have bright lights on my garage that remain on at night - front area is a busy road, park, and the streetlights are LED's. so good lighting.

I don't want to chase MP's but I do like the 4k cameras I have seen reviews on based on the ability to pull out a readable snappy, license plate, or identify a person or object by zooming in and cropping the segment that matters.

I like the bullet style for on my house where the current camera is, but most are still 3.6mm Wide or 2.8MM super wide and the narrowest I have seen is a HikVision 4.0MM
I did see some optical zoom lenses but I am unsure if the Zoomed in viewing is still in 4K or its only full resolution when not cropped.

Sensor size vs.MP's - I read a lot about this here and did other research, but it seems that most of the sensors from HIK or Dahua (newer 4k cams) are very similar.
I'd love to identify people, hear conversations in my yard (well, its in an ally and sometimes people plot with bad intentions) I'm guessing as I am a MAC guy and don't own a windows based PC id either want a nice 8ch PoE NVR or would have to get a computer (used, whatever) as I don't want to buy 2 additional Synology licenses when It seems BI would be less expensive than that and have more functionality. I would also like a nice intuitive web app (IOS) that works well and I can filter by alerts, movement, people, etc and not have to look at or download an hour time block to pull out the segment that I need.

Lastly let me say that Im leaning towards bullet and or turret style cameras and the bullet style one I would like to mount on the side of my house overlooking the driveway so the camera would be on a 90 degree angle from the base. - Also Let me say that 2 nights ago I ordered a pizza from Door Dash at midnight then fell asleep - the next morning in the front I discovered that someone must have came up, sat on my porch and are my pizza, they didn't like the crust so I could the crust of the pizza back in the box.... and I wasn't aware that people seem to use my outside A/C port on my front porch without permission, as I caught a guy charging his phone with it - i'm rarely home and didn't know that this was a thing.

Thanks everyone !! And GO BUCKS!! NBA Champs!!!
 

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The ratio of sensor size versus resolution is the key. A 1/2.8" sensor is great for a 2MP camera. A 1/1.8" sensor is great 4MP camera. An 8MP needs a 1/1.2" sensor at least. All of those are based on good, blur free, motion video at night. Great daytime still shots are very easy to get. You can even get good color still shots at night, but motion is a whole other story especially at night. Most of the consumer end cameras, like Nest, Reolink, SV3C and so on, slow the shutter down dramatically to get a color picture. When I say slow it down I mean under 1/30 second and even much slower. The slowest a shutter can go and provide somewhat blur free night video is 1/60 and 1/100 is the baseline I try to maintain.

A varifocal camera has an optically zoomable lens and does not use digital zoom. Resolution is resolution not matter the method of zoom. The problem is with digital zoom you are spreading too few pixels over a wider area which results in blur. A varifocal is not a true zoom camera in the sense that the focal length is designed to be set and left at the desired field of view at installation.

I'd also suggest looking into Blue Iris and perhaps even using DeepStack with it to trigger alerts, SMs and/or email, to keepyou informed of what's going on when you're not home.
 

MCS Tech

n3wb
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The ratio of sensor size versus resolution is the key. A 1/2.8" sensor is great for a 2MP camera. A 1/1.8" sensor is great 4MP camera. An 8MP needs a 1/1.2" sensor at least. All of those are based on good, blur free, motion video at night. Great daytime still shots are very easy to get. You can even get good color still shots at night, but motion is a whole other story especially at night. Most of the consumer end cameras, like Nest, Reolink, SV3C and so on, slow the shutter down dramatically to get a color picture. When I say slow it down I mean under 1/30 second and even much slower. The slowest a shutter can go and provide somewhat blur free night video is 1/60 and 1/100 is the baseline I try to maintain.

A varifocal camera has an optically zoomable lens and does not use digital zoom. Resolution is resolution not matter the method of zoom. The problem is with digital zoom you are spreading too few pixels over a wider area which results in blur. A varifocal is not a true zoom camera in the sense that the focal length is designed to be set and left at the desired field of view at installation.

I'd also suggest looking into Blue Iris and perhaps even using DeepStack with it to trigger alerts, SMs and/or email, to keepyou informed of what's going on when you're not home.

Hi - Thanks so much for the quick response - So it seems like I could get a 3x or 5x optical zoom camera - zoom into my parking area, and it would still be 4k, or whatever the resolution of the camera is ? I'm probably going to go the BI route, but I don't know much about DeepStack.
 
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Once again, optical zoom has no effect on resolution. Zoom is only a description of being able to vary the focal length of a lens in this case. It is not digital zoom as is offered in many consumer grade cameras. 1K is still 1K whether at 4mm or 12mm or 25mm focal length.

DeepStack is AI and can be used to filter alerts to help eliminate false alerts from shadows, moving tree leaves and such. Objects can be specified to constitute verified alerts, like person, car, truck, bus, boat, bicycle, elephant, giraffe, zebra and so on. There are a few threads discussing it here on IPCT. It is integrated into Blue Iris but does require installation of the DeepStack program itself. It comes in a CPU version and a GPU version but the GPU version will only run on NVidia cards that are CUDA capable. The GPU version also needs some extra addons from NVidia to work with. I've tried both and use the GPU version.

A surveillance system is not a plug and play system. Every installation is different and every camera type, as well as the actual location of the camera, is different. Each camera needs to be dialed in to provide the best possible video. Leaving things set on "auto" is a plan guaranteed to fail when you need it most. Motion detection is another thing that needs some careful tuning for each camera to work as consistently as possible. It does take some time and effort, but is worth it all, at last to me.
 

looney2ns

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Hi - Thanks so much for the quick response - So it seems like I could get a 3x or 5x optical zoom camera - zoom into my parking area, and it would still be 4k, or whatever the resolution of the camera is ? I'm probably going to go the BI route, but I don't know much about DeepStack.
Start simple, purchase one camera such as the Review-OEM Loryta IPC-T5442T-ZE Varifocal 4mp camera (Dahua) | IP Cam Talk .
Make a test rig, and test each proposed location for 24-48 hours, put an SD card in the cam, and record for that length of time.
Get to know the capabilities of a real camera vs the nest toys'.
The cams you have are mounted too high.
Based on your questions you need to read the cliff notes once again. ;)
Also this, and all of it's included links.
 

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