Surveillance system newbie looking for guidance, knowledge, and advice

bfollowell

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Hello everyone. I'm a new forum member. I'm a techie from way back but have never had a security system or camera system before. My wife and I built a new home and moved in December 2014. It seems like every day we're hearing of more and more craziness going on, from burglaries and home invasions all the way up to terrorist activities. It's enough to make you scared to leave the house, and maybe enough to leave you scared there too!

We just purchased a SimpliSafe security system over the Thanksgiving weekend and plan to install it in while we're off for the holidays. Sometime next year we'd also like to install a surveillance system. I'd been looking at some Samsung NVR systems but I think I'm leaning more towards putting together my own computer-based system and running Blue Iris. I think this option will cost me a little more, but will likely give me a better all-around system with more features and functionality in the long run. On top of that, it will be a really cool project and I think it would be fun.

Anyway, I guess I'm looking for some basic pros and cons of both routes, NVR setup vs. computer-based Blue Iris setup. I'm also looking for advice and to learn from others that have already been down this path. I guess I should mention that I'm thinking I'll eventually be running 6 to 8, 2MP indoor and outdoor cameras. I'll consider any decent camera but I have been leaning towards the Samsung IP cameras. I'm sure, once you get started, it's easy to keep coming up with new uses for and locations for cameras, but I really can't see ever needing much more than about 8 split between inside and out. Maybe I'm being naive.

Thanks in advance for any knowledge and advice anyone is willing to offer.

I look forward to reading through the many threads in these forums as I continue to learn over the next year or so.

Happy Holidays to everyone.

- Byron
 

Q™

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They want you to be scared: the media...the government...the politicians...the police...because people who are scared are easier to control. Understanding this...it is also important to be prepared. One of the good things about being prepared is that one gets to purchase and install lots of IP surveillance cameras. :) In my opinion, Blue Iris will give you the most flexibility possible. Add in eight (8) decent quality 2MP to 5MP cameras and a PoE switch and you'll be good to go. The hard part will be running the Cat5e or Cat6 cable to each camera location; then the fun begins. However, UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCE let your wife know it is fun...it's much better to stoke her fear so that it becomes easier for you to purchase more cameras.
 

bfollowell

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I agree. She must think it is the worst drudgery in the world. How else will I be able to explain all the beer breaks?!

I ran 2 CAT6 drops and 2 RG6 drops to every room, 2 locations to some of the larger/entertainment rooms. Of course, all of those drops are in areas that are convenient for hooking up televisions and computers and Tivos, not so much for security cameras. Now I get to run all new cable throughout my almost brand-new home. I'll probably be able to tie into existing jacks to run the cameras inside. It'll be the outside cameras that I'll "get" to run all new cable for.

Of course, I didn't think to have the contractors install accent lighting or receptacles for Christmas lights in the soffits, so maybe I can do it all at one time.
 

Q™

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What would really suck, is realizing that you don't need the camera outside here, you need the camera outside there. So try to think ahead try to plan and try to anticipate as best you can. You could actually temporarily mount cameras outside by running ethernet cable loose on the ground , and hanging down the side of the house and snaking it in through a window or a basement window. It's really nice when the cameras are positioned correctly and you have the field of view that you need to accomplish your requirements. In my opinion, my non-expert opinion, it's best to get the cameras up and running with temporary cabling to determine that the fuse are those you need.

However many cameras you get, plan on adding more,. I started with one. I now have 24. And if you go the blue Iris route make certain that you get a computer that has a powerful enough CPU to handle all the cameras you think you need and all the cameras you may need in the future. Blue Iris Karen need some significant CPU horsepower. Be certain to ask our friend Mr. @fenderman for his opinion on the best computer to meet your needs.
 
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fenderman

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6-8 1080p cameras can easily be run on a haswell i5 that you can have for 300 (hp elitedesk or dell optiplex 7020/9020)...a year is a long time in the tech world so you need to revisit it at the time. I can tell you that Blue iris is way more flexible than an NVR and is what I would suggest if you dont mind learning the software.
 
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