House Camera Setup and LPR Advice

schunter1969

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What's up everyone. I live near the end of a road that has a pool/tennis club. The club has a big field used for parking and at night this field becomes a go to spot for low lifes. I am posting my rough draft of my planned setup and I am looking for input. Once I determine the cameras I can determine the computer I need to run blue iris for the setup. Check out the pictures I have included.

Camera #1: It's one way in and one way out and I plan on installing this camera for reading license plates and seeing the faces of the cars driving in. I am not going to run a LPR program, I am going to have this camera recording 24/7. The camera will be mounted on a tree approximately 6ft from the road and 20-30ft high. The camera will be pointed directly at the road leaving the area.
Considering: Amcrest IP8M-MB2546EW

Cameras #2 & 3: These cameras will be record on motion and I might camera #3 also recording 24/7.
Considering: Amcrest IP8M-MT2544EW

Cameras #4 & 5: These cameras will be record on motion
Considering: Amcrest IP8M-T2499EW-28MM





House2.pngHouse1.pngTree.png
 
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:welcome:

Welcome to the land of video surveillance lunatics. Be sure to check the WiKI, in the blue bar at the top of the page. Study, carefully on a real computer, the Cliff Notes in there. There is also a lot of other good information for sizing a system and keeping it safe on the internet, foil the "phone home" features. Read, study plan, ask questions, revise plans and test before spending money. It'll save you time, frustration and money in the end. There's tons of reviews here on cameras, and NVRs to help confuse you even more when trying to make a decision.

A few comments.

Cameras:

Consider Dahua, specifically 5442 series, 4MP, StarLight cameras over Amcrest. Not to knock Amcrest, but they are re-branded Dahua, usually, and to get the price down features are stripped out of the camera which you may find useful in the future. Do a search for "5442" here in IPCT for specific models, bullets, varifocals, and turrets. Prices are, generally in the 160-200 range per camera.

LPR Camera:

Why are you mounting it that high? That will make higher zoom capabilities necessary to get an angle good enough for LPR. I'm not an LPR expert, but I'd say 10 feet up would be optimal. See the threads, and subsection, on LPR cameras. LPR is an art unto itself and takes specific settings, especially for night time LPR. Lots of good information in those threads.

PC for BI:

Look in the WiKi. Tons of information for sizing a system in there. With five 4MP cameras you won't have a very heavy load at all and you can probably pick up an i5 or i7, used, complete with Windoohs 10 on eBay fairly cheaply. Lots of threads discussing this as well on here with links to give you an idea what you're looking for. Plan for double the number of cameras though. Surveillance cameras seem to multiply like rabbits.
 
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schunter1969

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Ya I am having a hard time finding a legit source of Dahua cameras and I would like to get 8MP cameras. I am aware of the information on PCs for BI. The camera height on the tree is for aesthetics but I think 20ft will be the height.
 
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You're chasing megapixels. 8MP at night will be crappy unless you want to spend $1000 or more per camera to get a big enough sensor so it has a useable picture at night. Aesthetics are fine, but if they render the camera useless are they worth it? I have two tree mounted cameras painted sort of a greenish brown and no one sees them. You'd need to go a greyish color but the same thing applies, most people won't even notice it. They're at about eight feet. Look at the thread, here, for EmpireTech Andy. He's a goto for Dahua, reliable, excellent pricing and very fast shipping. He also has an Amazon store but the prices are higher there.
 

wittaj

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The LPR section will give you great information to read. I completely set mine up just from reading that thread location.

The key is to make sure you can manually set shutter speed - if you cannot do that, it will not capture plates at night unless you want a parked car.

My neighbor 4 houses down bought into the 8MP hype and bought a Lorex system (rebranded Dahua) last year and my 2MP cams produce a much better image/video. His next door neighbor had his car broken into at night and his video provided zero useful information. Meanwhile, my 2MP starlights provided all the info needed. My neighbor has since replaced 2 of the 8MP cams with 2MP EmpireTech starlight cams and said he will continue to do so and wishes he didn't chase the 8MP hype.
 

wittaj

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Those are both good cameras. Anything from EmpireTech or Loryta (same company) are Dahua without the logo and with excellent customer service.

I have learned that lens size means everything and I think more important than MP. Like many that have come to this site (including me), I bought off the shelf systems with a 2.8mm lens and while it give a nice picture, when it matters like identifying a thief or other activity, the image isn't going to cut it. I am slowly upgrading to better based on what I have learned on this site.

The 5442 is a nice overview type camera and serves the purposes of many people effectively but it is a 2.8mm lens. The key is if you think you could identify someone on the street from your house (locations 2 and 3), as you can see from this chart, it probably will not happen unless you really know the person. A total stranger will be a pixilated mess if you try to zoom in any to identify them. They might be a good fit for location 4 and 5 in the backyard though.

1582750554309.png

The 4239 is a 6mm lens and would probably be right on the verge of being able to pick up plates based on distance. If you have it lower it probably could pick them up. You do have a nice sturdy mailbox/address feature right at the road and you really should consider placing the LPR on it. You could either go with the turret style camera on the side or get creative with a decorative item on top of your brick (statue, bird feeder, etc.) and hide the camera in it (examples in the LPR subsection). At that location you could probably get by with a 3.6mm lens - not ideal size but I have seen success at that type location.

Keep in mind the LPR camera will be dialed in to be LPR and cannot really be used for any other function. At night it will be a complete black image until a vehicle passes and all you see are headlights or tailights and the plates.

Many people on this site (including me) go with the varifocal lens type cameras just so you can dial it up to the size you need to identify. Yea it seems like a waste to have a zoom camera that after you set it you never touch the zoom again, but it really is the best way to assure you get captured what you need when it matters most.
 

SouthernYankee

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The Thread is ok were it is .


if you are interested in International Dahua cameras, a forum member sells dahua (and some Hikvision) and ships world wide. You can read some of the members recommendations on his service. He also provides cameras to other forum member for evaluation and reviews.
you can email him for a quote, or purchase from his Aliexpress store or his Amazon store. The cameras are fully upgradable, he posts upgrade software when available.

There may be some delay or stock unavailable do the the coronavirus


Andy
@EMPIRETECANDY
kingsecurity2014@163.com
Andy's ipcamtalk vendor forum: EmpireTech Andy
Andy's AliExpress store: Empire Technology Co., Ltd - Amazing prodcuts with exclusive discounts on AliExpress
Andy's Amazon store: EmpireTech-Andy @ Amazon.com:
forum: EmpireTech Andy
 

Sybertiger

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You're gonna want a varifocal Starlight cam....


 

mat200

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What's up everyone. ..
Welcome @schunter1969

Just a couple of notes:
1) The DORI info, typically Dahua publishes their DORI specs which many of us feel are more optimistic than we like to use. ( for example we prefer 100 ppf density when determining the ID distance - thus it will be shorter than what Dahua lists ). Look for the DORI info in the cliff notes.

2) Amcrest is now a partner of some sort with IPCAMTALK , so you may want to see if there is any additional discounts you can get as a member. ( thus why they are in the vendor section )

3) Amcrest has some new models, which imho are a very welcome addition to their line up. ( Dahua OEM cameras, though often without IVS features. )

4) Andy ( EmpireTecAndy ) is also a partner with ipcamtalk ( also in the vendor section ). Many of us source Dahua OEM international models from him ( most of which have the Dahua "IVS" features - more advanced features than just basic motion detection. )

5) Remember to TEST the positions you are considering mounting cameras.

6) Looks like a good plan to start with, I would expect to add more cameras if that was my property - even if you only start with a few now.
 

schunter1969

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Thanks for all the great information everyone! I am now leaning toward the IPC-HFW5241E-Z12E for the camera #1 position. Is there a better camera offered on Andys sight? It looks like a large price jump from anything better like going to a PTZ. If I went with the IPC-HFW5241E-Z12E I know I will have to play around with the settings and zoom to read license plates.
 

wittaj

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Thanks for all the great information everyone! I am now leaning toward the IPC-HFW5241E-Z12E for the camera #1 position. Is there a better camera offered on Andys sight? It looks like a large price jump from anything better like going to a PTZ. If I went with the IPC-HFW5241E-Z12E I know I will have to play around with the settings and zoom to read license plates.
That is the go to camera here for LPR and my number one choice for it (especially at that price). It will more than meet your needs at that location. When you get it, go to the LPR subsection and set it up to the settings shown there and it will give you a huge head start. It will be under the 5231 in the section as the 5241 is the newer model.
 

bigredfish

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Thanks for all the great information everyone! I am now leaning toward the IPC-HFW5241E-Z12E for the camera #1 position. Is there a better camera offered on Andys sight? It looks like a large price jump from anything better like going to a PTZ. If I went with the IPC-HFW5241E-Z12E I know I will have to play around with the settings and zoom to read license plates.

Great camera for LPR. keep under 120ft and 80% zoom if you can. I'd mount way lower, you're angle of attack wont be good way up there. The closer to even with the plate the better, so maybe 10ft.
 
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schunter1969

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Sybertiger, you think the IPC-B5442E-ZE is better than the IPC-HFW5241E-Z12E? The 4MP over the 2MP but you loose the 60mm zoom?
 

Sybertiger

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Sybertiger, you think the IPC-B5442E-ZE is better than the IPC-HFW5241E-Z12E? The 4MP over the 2MP but you loose the 60mm zoom?
No judgment on the cams. For LPR follow the recommendations from the LPR thread(s). If you desire a 4mp for some other area then that 4mp is going to be recommended as it's both varifocal and has a 1/1.8" Starlight+ sensor.
 
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