Public Sector & Education • Business & Enterprise • Home Security
Panasonic has made the task of choosing a suitable IP camera from their extensive product catalogue a little easier by creating their new Elite range. It’s an interesting collection of 9 popular models, each one chosen to deliver high performance IP CCTV that you can rely on.
Panasonic’s announcement of an Elite range piqued our interest. Which models had been picked and what were the criteria? We decided to group the feature-sets and take a closer look at just what is on offer in this newly labelled assortment.
We’ve just spent three days at the annual security exhibition IFSEC, taking place at the Excel in London this week. It’s a huge show and impossible to look at everything but overall the sense is that the evolution of IP-based security technologies is continuing to gather pace and analogue-based solutions have now been marginalised. I did not see one analogue camera on the show at any of the main stands, but then I was not looking for one.
A big change from Milestone Systems: with the release of Milestone XProtect 2014 last week comes a significant change to the number of licenses required when using video encoders to migrate from analogue to IP. Previously, a Milestone XProtect camera license was required for each encoded video channel. For example, a video encoder with say 16 analogue cameras connected to it would require 16 Milestone XProtect device licenses. This is no longer the case.
We’re on a roll this month. Having just predicted the 7 top trends in video surveillance, we are now going to open up the oracle again and share the 5 best wireless network cameras on the market right now.
The models below all impress us a great deal, so much so that we just couldn’t agree on a ranking formula from 1 – 5, so decided to use good old alphabetical order instead. So, let’s begin…
Panasonic’s now end-of-line BB-HCM735 was one of the best-selling network cameras in their home/office range, offering very decent VGA resolution footage in an outdoor-ready casing with pan/tilt movement and 2-way audio, while still being very cost-effective. Now that this camera has been discontinued, we’ve taken a look at its replacement; the Panasonic i-Pro WV-SW175. Does this camera still offer the same good value as its predecessor?
First things first, let’s see some sample footage from the camera.
Take a look at the latest releases from Panasonic and Vivotek, now available for purchase.
Panasonic i-Pro WV-SC384
The WV-SC384 is a new addition to Panasonic’s pan-tilt-zoom SmartHD camera range and is very similar to the WV-SC385 model with the only difference being that it does not have a removable infrared cut filter, meaning the WV-SC384 is more suited to day-time operation only whereas the popular WV-SC385 is true day / night and can be used for 24/7 operation.
Both cameras benefit from features such as Wide Dynamic Range (WDR), on-board SD-card recording for backup and 18x optical zoom, which combined with the HD 720p resolution provides crisp, detailed footage of objects and activity at long distances. The WV-SC384 is available as an indoor unit as well as an outdoor bundle.
The odd thing is that Panasonic has launched the WV-SC384 at a higher price point than the WV-SC385, which you would not expect given the true day/night facility in the latter. We expect this will be corrected over time, at which point this camera will become very attractive indeed in the marketplace.
The Panasonic i-Pro WV-SW396 HD dome network camera is now available to purchase at Network Webcams.
With an IP66-rated housing that offers protection against both harsh weather and vandalism this top-end IP security camera is ideally suited to outdoor monitoring in tough environments, whilst its premium technology delivers optimum site surveillance.
With auto-tracking, continuous 360° panning capabilities, 36x optical zoom (72x ‘Extra Zoom’) and HD video footage at up to 30fps, no detail is missed, which makes this an ideal camera for monitoring areas where capturing clear image detail is of high importance. To further this, Panasonic’s own Face Super Dynamic technology automatically adjusts the focus to ensure prime clarity on facial features, perfect for situations where face recognition and identification is required such as sports stadiums, town centres and public parks.
The in-built day/night mode switches from full colour to black and white ensuring 24 hour monitoring, even in complete darkness. Its built-in SD card slot also affords recording backup in the event of network failure, making the camera a reliable round-the-clock security presence.
Watch the Panasonic i-Pro WV-396 auto-tracking demo:
The Panasonic i-Pro WV-396 IP camera is available to purchase at Network Webcams. Alternatively call 0151 633 2111 and speak to one of our technical sales specialists for more information and to find out whether the WV-SW396 is suitable for your security implementation.
Hot off the production line, here’s a sneak peek at Panasonic’s replacement for their popular BB-HCM715; the i-Pro WV-ST165 pan/tilt IP camera. We’ve unboxed the camera to show you what to expect.
With more and more security systems migrating to IP, contention and bandwidth are hot topics amongst IP camera manufacturers. The benefits of using computer networks for CCTV video are clear for everyone to see, but these benefits may be compromised if data speeds suffer due to bandwidth limitations. As such, any new technology that eases the burden on networks is worth investigating.
Enter Panasonic. Their latest technology, Variable Image Quality on Specified area (VIQS in short), claims to cut bandwidth use by streaming different sections of the camera view at different image quality. The benefit is that bandwidth for non-essential areas is reduced, leading to overall smaller bandwidth use.
This makes sense in theory. But we wanted to see for ourselves. We put the system to the test to see if VIQS in IP cameras really makes a difference to bandwidth use and investigated any side effects encountered.
The Panasonic BB-HCM715 and BB-HCM735 will soon be discontinued. Their successors are part of Panasonic’s i-Pro professional series, offering an improved feature set.
The BB-HCM715 will be replaced by the WV-ST162 and WV-ST165, providing SVGA and HD720p resolution respectively, while for outdoor environments, the WV-SW172 and WV-SW175 replace the BB-HCM735, coming with IP55-rated casing.
All of these security cameras are equipped with wide dynamic range technology, adaptive black stretch and dynamic noise reduction which allow the cameras to capture events even in the most demanding light conditions. Face detection can automatically alter exposure for peak facial definition, perfect for taking security measures where light sources would normally impede image quality.
Compatible with SD cards up to 32Gb, these new Panasonic IP cameras have a longer retention period than the previous model, allowing more footage to be directly stored within the camera itself for recording with no external hardware or for secure backup recording and reviewing. Video streaming has also been improved with both high speed H.264 and MPEG streams available concurrently whilst privacy masking now allows the coverage of sensitive areas within the cameras field of view.
All of these additional features complement the existing cameras features, including motorized pan/tilt, 2-way audio with integrated speaker and mobile phone viewing, making them well-rounded security cameras.
Although the BB-HCM cameras were popular it is clear that these newer models offer the user a much developed IP security camera. We hope that IP technology continues to progress in this way, offering end users the very best value for their money.