Analog to IP: Discover the Truth about Video Migration
By: Scott Hendrickson
Video Product Manager
Truth #1: It is Cost Effective.
In today’s world of technology, balancing the performance of a video system with
budget constraints has been a challenge that has kept many systems in the analog
realm. The lower cost and performance of analog video may allow Loss Prevention
Managers to put more cameras in more stores, but with the declining costs
associated with current IP cameras, higher resolutions and system flexibility
with open architected network video recorders, the case to move from analog to
IP is a strong one. While some retailers can make the jump to IP with complete
replacements of existing video infrastructure, most find that a migration path
from analog to IP is done in stages and proper planning for the future. Consider
the following key components regarding your present video system and make the
move towards an IP video system.
Truth #2: Cabling is Key.
The first item to consider is the current cabling infrastructure. Coaxial cable
with a power wire? Structured cabling, Category 3, 5, 5e, 6 or other? If you are
still installing analog video systems with coaxial cable, then at the very
minimum, you need to move into Ethernet standard Category 5e or 6 (Unshielded
Twisted Pair – UTP) using baluns to transmit analog video, power and data (for
PTZ’s) as soon as possible. Baluns are small transceivers that live at each end
of a UTP run to convert the analog signal and transmit over Cat5e/6. Different
baluns are used for varying run lengths, but it is important to know for future
IP considerations that Ethernet standards have a maximum run distance of 100M
(328’) between IP devices (switch, PC, IP Camera). If you are installing analog
today with baluns, to be ready for IP in the future, the Cat5e/6 cabling must
adhere to TIA Ethernet standards of 100M or less, or include proper intermediate
junctions and proper Ethernet terminations.
See Truths #3 and #4 here.