Hello from BC, Canada - forum newby


Feb 25, 2019
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Hi all,

New to the forum and looking forward to reading the cliff notes & wiki. Also fenderman pointed me already to the BI help file! Some excellent forum threads on here that have been very helpful already.

I'm running 6 Lilin IPR6122 and 2 Lilin MR3042A fixed dome cameras outside and inside my house, plus a Helios door station cam. NVR is a Lilin NVR200L. This was installed as part of my whole house Control4 automation system done in 2017.

In essence, I would like to make some major improvements to this system as I'm not happy with a few things. I'm not blaming my installer (they have been excellent) but living with the house for a few years now, hindsight is 20/20 and I believe if I learn about IP cameras, BI, ONVIF and get to know the thieves' behavior in my neighborhood (there have been a few snooping around!), I have an opportunity to set things straight.

The NVR has one of the worst UI's I have experienced in quite a while, but since this is my first NVR, perhaps they are all equally terrible! The companion app isn't much better. And what better way to truly experience how efficient your NVR works than having to search for the footage of the thieves in the act and exporting the clips from various cameras so I can drop it off at the police station on a USB stick. Only took me 4 hours... ugh. Interestingly, my installer no longer offers the Lilin product line and has switched to Uniview. I wasn't the only one complaining...

I'll be using this forum to educate myself on replacing my NVR with a home build system (have experience building custom server & gaming rigs), running as a dedicated BI system in a 2U form factor that sits in my home automation rack.
Also, I will be looking at replacing some cameras with a better option. I'm not sure yet what that option is, but I'm noticing some issues that I would like to resolve:
  1. There is one dome IR camera that is wall mounted and completely exposed to rain & snow. The rain drops not only trigger motion, they make seeing anything through the camera useless, especially at night. I suspect he IR light might be causing a lot of issues in the rain.
  2. At night, even though there is ambient light from street lights, etc, the image quality is not great. I'll need to learn about what to expect of night-time footage and which technology to consider.
  3. One or two of my perimeter cameras might benefit from being replaced with a PTZ camera. I live in a mountainous & forested area and we have wild life coming right on the property, especially bears, deer and at one point a cougar. (One late night, my wife nudged me out of bed to go check out the rummaging she was hearing outside. I checked my cameras but didn't see anything. I went outside in my skivvies to investigate only to be greeted by a sizeable brown bear. Both of us got a good scare, but only one of us crapped their pants.) So, a PTZ might be a great option to consider.
  4. The cameras are all 4MP or 1080p but I will need to learn about the advantages of considering my (currently limited) options with 4K. Maybe it's overkill.
Sorry about the lengthy intro post. I'll get onto reading stuff on here!