Detecting wildlife with Dahua cameras

EvanVanVan

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tigerwillow1

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FYI on a related subject while googling firmware's I found a couple of interesting posts that might be helpful to know (even if this is a little off topic):
Wow, you just taught the old dog a few new tricks! Looks like the firmware I mentioned might fly on the 5442 varifocal. Too late in the day to try it right now.
 

tigerwillow1

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My 5442 varifocal wouldn't accept the 5xxx/.10.R firmware downloaded from the dahuawiki page. I thought it would based on the hardware IDs in the firmware file. There must be some detail I didn't grasp. So still no known firmware for the 5442 varifocal to detect animals with IVS :(
 

EvanVanVan

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That's disappointing lol. I'm getting more comfortable/an understanding with this firmware stuff. I'm going to flash and install my first three T5442TM's next weekend and get some experience with successful animal detection with tripwires and intrusion zones. After that I'll definitely guinea pig a camera or two (fixed length and especially varifocal) searching for an older animal detecting firmware. One of those hundreds of firmware's listed on duhuawiki has to be an older, successfully flashable version lol.
 

tigerwillow1

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I found something that doesn't work with the older firmware (.8.R and .10.R) on a newer 5442TM-AS. There must have been a hardware change from the older versions of the same camera. What doesn't work right is using a memory card in the camera. Actually, it looks to me like the files are being recorded but not showing up for playback, so you could use a memory card and pull it out for playback with Smart Player, or load newer firmware into the camera to do playback, then go back to the older firmware. Too much hassle for me and I'll go without the memory card. A disappointment, not a killer. My older 5442TM-AS cameras work correctly with the old firmware and the memory card.

Specific symptoms:
  • When looking at Storage/Destination/Local, the card shows up as two "DISK1"s.
  • The used and total capacity numbers appear to be correct.
  • Attempt to format the memory card will fail.
  • None of the recorded files appear on the Playback window.

I still keep hoping Dahua will someday let the firmware turn off the human/vehicle detection.
 

wittaj

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I found something that doesn't work with the older firmware (.8.R and .10.R) on a newer 5442TM-AS. There must have been a hardware change from the older versions of the same camera. What doesn't work right is using a memory card in the camera. Actually, it looks to me like the files are being recorded but not showing up for playback, so you could use a memory card and pull it out for playback with Smart Player, or load newer firmware into the camera to do playback, then go back to the older firmware. Too much hassle for me and I'll go without the memory card. A disappointment, not a killer. My older 5442TM-AS cameras work correctly with the old firmware and the memory card.

Specific symptoms:
  • When looking at Storage/Destination/Local, the card shows up as two "DISK1"s.
  • The used and total capacity numbers appear to be correct.
  • Attempt to format the memory card will fail.
  • None of the recorded files appear on the Playback window.

I still keep hoping Dahua will someday let the firmware turn off the human/vehicle detection.

I had that happen to me once with the 5442. I factory reset and reflashed the same firmware and factory reset and it worked.

It wasn't this firmware, but maybe the same process will work.
 

tigerwillow1

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maybe the same process will work.
You're encouraging me to try it a few more times even though I've already done multiple reflashes and factory resets. If it sticks one time it will have been worth it.
 

wittaj

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Yeah it took several attempts. The one that finally worked was:

  • unpower camera
  • push and hold in reset button
  • apply power and hold reset button for 5 clicks of the IR filter
  • let go of reset button
 

tigerwillow1

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No joy after lots of resets and reloading the firmware. I'll just have 2 cameras without a memory card. I can live with that, and have been with most of my cameras anyway.
 

EvanVanVan

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I got three T5442TM-AS cameras set up yesterday and just enabled IVS alerts this morning (and also a group trigger for one of the 5442 zoom cameras ). Flashing all three to the .8 FW went well, hopefully everything works!

I'm still trying to understand the naming conventions of the firmware files. You mention a 5231 in the OP can also detect animals with an older FW, I have a HFW5241E-Z12E. I'm guessing that's an old enough model it should also have a FW capable of animal detection? How about a IPC-B5442E-Z4E? (Based on the 5442 model I'm assuming it's newer.) I'm thinking as long as the FW passes the HWID check and flashes correctly, I can't get myself in too much trouble? Just do a little research here to get the important information in the FW name...

I also bought from Andy the SD5A425XA-HNR PTZ camera. I haven't gotten it installed yet, that should happen over thanksgiving. After getting it pointed in the right direction using spotter cams, should this be able to auto track animals? (out of the box and/or at all, with an older firmware? )
 

tigerwillow1

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I'm thinking as long as the FW passes the HWID check and flashes correctly, I can't get myself in too much trouble?
In theory, yes. Besides the normal risk that any firmware change risks bricking the camera, there have been a few cases where once newer firmware is loaded, it won't let you go back to an older version. I have been very lucky with all of the firmware changes I've been making lately. I see that the HFW5241E-Z12E is still a current model, and it's a WizMind camera, which I expect means it won't detect animals. Your only hope is that you might have an older one before they got WizMinded. I realize now I'm being all bad news. Based on my IPC-T5442T-ZE not having any firmware that picks up animals, I'd guess the same fate for your B5442E-Z4E . For my final bad-news guess, the SD5A425XA-HNR is a WizSense camera, which means no animal detection to me. Other than that small detail, you've got a really super camera there. I have a 4k-x and continue to be in awe over it, but have to rely on the dumber cameras for the animal triggers. I'm toying with getting one of the new 25x mini-ptz cameras that Andy has been teasing us about, and fully expect it won't detect animals. That one will be more of a toy for me, while the older and dumber cameras do the real work.

This smart camera situation is reminding me of our newer high-end Subaru. For all of its smarts, it's sometimes the stupidest thing around. It sometimes nags to put the seatbelt on when the car is stopped, says to shut the engine off when it's not running, won't let you turn down the radio volume when in reverse, and a whole host of other dumb things in the name of being advanced. Our older barebones Honda is less capable, but for a short simple trip it's a relief to not have to fight all of the wizzy technology that makes things more difficult.
 

EvanVanVan

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Thank you, I guess I'll try downgrading the firmwares if I find any older versions that look viable and post back if anything is successful (however unlikely)...I only started buying these cameras back in August so I can't imagine my Z12E is that old/lacking "WizSense" lol.
 

EvanVanVan

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I think I've got good news... I believe I found a firmware for the 5442 zoom (T5442T-ZE) cameras that works for animal detection! I was hoping to confirm it last night before posting this but of course the animals didn't want to cooperate! I decided to post it anyway so @tigerwillow1 (or anyone else interested) can confirm it. Here's the link for it:
Now I'm not 100% sure this is what I'm looking for, but as can be seen in the attached pictures this firmware from early 2020 does NOT have Smart Motion Detection in the settings! I'm hoping the lack of SMD means it will detect animals??

I flashed it successfully on two T5442T-ZE's and one (black) T5442T-ZEB, now I just need the animals to show up. I was considering buying a deer archery target to test it haha, but I probably should just be patient. Also, side note, in case anyone else is setting up IVS alerts for the first time I did have to do the motion detection workaround, deleting the area and lowering the sensitivity to the lowest.


For the Z12E: If the lack of SMD does indeed mean it will detect animals, I also found this firmware (AI 4.0 latest new firmware DH_IPC-HX5XXX-Volt_MultiLang_PN_Stream3_V2.800.0000000.0.R.190521.zip) that successfully flashed on the HFW5241E-Z12E and doesn't include SMD (again still waiting on animals to show up to confirm it lol). I think this firmware would also work on the Z4E but that camera is out of service until my 16 port PoE switch arrives.

edit: it does not detect animals, even with the lack of SMD
 

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tigerwillow1

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You can be sure I'll try it out, side by side with a 5442TM-AS. I've used the little 2-port POE powered switch from Andy a whole lot more than I ever imagined.
 

EvanVanVan

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That's what I've got going too lol

edit: Snowed all night last night. I guess old firmware IVS is still susceptible to those false alerts, my cameras were triggering constantly lol. Although it was crazy how much of a difference turning off the internal IR and only using external illuminator's made on the one camera it was possible to do so...The snow was almost invisible after that. Also crazy was how many Dogs and Cats Deepstack detected "in the snow"
 
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tigerwillow1

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I had a disappointment last night with the newest 5442TM-AS and tried something I hope will help. A group of 4 raccoons walked through the tripwires but no event was triggered. However, the blue tripwire lines disappeared from the display for about a second, so there was something detected. I saw that the IVS global config, still had the defaults of anti-disturb enable on, and sensitivity at 5. I killed anti-disturb enable and cranked the sensitivity up to 8. Of course, the raccoons might never walk through the same place again. They were pretty far away from the camera and small in terms of pixels. They might have triggered IVS on the just-replaced 2 mp starlight, then again, that camera might not have seen them at all. I knew to look because they triggered IVS on another camera. Here they are, pretty small in the big picture, but pretty decent on digital zoom, considering how far away they are.

Capture.JPGCapture1.JPG

I never found a description of anti-disturb enable in the Dahua docs. An Amcrest support page says " Anti-disturb is used to filter shaking leaves, water ripples, or any other disturbance that could affect IVS reporting. "

I've quit using the camera's IR lights, snow reflections being one of the major reasons.
 

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The 5442 varifocal with the .12.R firmware flunked its first test. No trigger on this. The lighting is bad because the camera is looking into the sun. The 5442TM-AS triggered.
Capture.JPG
 

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Damn, that sucks. Any reason you prefer tripwires over intrusion boxes? And wow you seemingly get a lot of animal activity lol.
 

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I feel like I have better results with tripwires. It's a more intuitive thing after trying both, nothing that I can defend with hard data. The animals usually don't behave the way I want them to. Some days there is nothing, other days it's like a traveling zoo. A couple of nights ago there were a few coyotes, raccoons, feral cats, and a badger. The night before, a bobcat. Occasionally foxes, porcupines, and possums. One time a scorpion walking by triggered the IVS, but no triggers ever with snakes, maybe because they're going by too slowly. All the squirrels disappeared a couple of weeks ago when it went from summer to winter in about 24 hours flat. When desperate, I use a little RC car to test if the IVS is working.
 

tigerwillow1

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The 5442 varifocal is failing badly. No trips from these masked varmints. The 5442TM-AS mounted a few inches away posted 6 triggers.
Capture.JPG Capture1.JPG
 
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