Digital video recorders (DVRs) Comparison: Mitsubishi, Siqura  (4)

 
Channels
16
32
64
32
Monitor Outputs
2
1
1
1
Storage Capacity GB
3000
3500
2500
2250
Image per second (IPS)
<200
25 (PAL)/30 (NTSC)
25 (PAL)/30 (NTSC)
25 (PAL)/30 (NTSC)
Compression Type
JPEG2000
--
--
--
Resolution
720 x 576
720 x 576
720 x 576
720 x 576
Signal Mode
PAL
PAL, NTSC
PAL, NTSC
--
External Storage
--
CD-RW, DVD-RW, USB
CD-RW, DVD-RW, USB
CD-RW, DVD-RW, USB

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Latest Digital video recorder (DVR) case studies

Making sure daily operations run smoothly
Making sure daily operations run smoothly

Although the Barcelona Metro (Transports Metropolitans de Barcelona, TMB) surveillance system has on occasion helped police to catch an organized group of thieves, crime was not the reason TMB started installing cameras twelve years ago. With over one million people traversing the city each day on TMB trains, with stops at more than 100 stations, Barcelona’s Metro authorities needed to make sure that things were running smoothly and safely and that commuters could get where they needed to go. The first phase of the project entailed installing an analog CCTV system throughout twenty metro stations. Each station contained eight cameras and a small compartment for an operator, who viewed the live streams locally on two monitors. The footage of each camera was recorded twenty-four hours per day and saved on a digital video recorder (DVR) for a period of three or four days. The system proved itself a success. It streamlined daily operations and helped to combat delays allowing prompt response times to serious incidents. TMB therefore decided to instigate a second installment phase: The system would come to comprise thirty cameras per station. Naturally, this was too much for just one locally-based station manager, and alternative solutions were sought. The maturation of effective metro management One of the first things that TMB did, in addition to increasing the number of cameras in each station, was to enhance their central control room with a customized video management system (VMS) and matrixes of screens for viewing video. The control room would contain one area for viewing live video and one for examining recordings. In this way, operators and security personnel would be able keep a close watch on the operations and safety of the Barcelona Metro. Due to the fact that recording the public in metro stations and saving it for a few days might make images vulnerable to misuse, TMB decided to enlist the help Indra Sistemas, S.A., Spain’s leading information technology (IT) company. In order to offset the possibility that images could be leaked to the public or tampered with, Indra was commissioned to create a customized VMS that would encrypt the camera images and make it impossible to freeze them. This VMS system thus has come to help protect the public from the potential abuse of the TMB surveillance system while at the same time enabling the metro system to run more smoothly for commuters. Another major improvement that TMB made to their system was to make their station managers mobile. Through the use of personal digital assistants (PDA), the once stationary operators are now able to receive camera footage and instructions from the central control room about the location and nature of various incidents in metro facilities. Traveling in pairs, these impromptu personnel can promptly address problems and make sure that trains are running smoothly and that people riding the metro are safe.     TMB and TKH Security Solutions work closely to update the Barcelona Metro surveillance network Evolving into IP Throughout the course of this surveillance system project, technology has, of course, continued to advance, and TMB was determined to keep pace with the times. Therefore, as TMB restructured and expanded its surveillance system into a larger and more complex network, it also started looking into what kinds of technology would best suit its needs. TMB wanted, for example, to continue to record all of its camera footage twenty-four hours per day and store the images for three or four days. Yet with around 3300 cameras throughout the city, it became all too clear that the system had outgrown its analog DVR apparatus. In an effort to maintain a state-of-the-art system, TMB sought the most superior IP recording solution for the application and, in the end, found the Siqura recording solution to be the best recorder for the job. Working together to guarantee optimal performance Although the Siqura recording solution would come to record the footage of the metro’s multitude of camera streams, Siqura solutions from TKH Security Solutions were not unfamiliar to TMB. From the very beginning of the project, fiber optic transmitters and receivers from TKH Security Solutions, a manufacturer of advanced IP and fiber video surveillance equipment, were used for streaming data and video. These fiber solutions had been shown to reliably provide quality video in each station, and TMB expected the same from the Siqura recording solution. Consequently, TMB and TKH Security Solutions have continued to work closely with each other over the years to expand and update the Barcelona Metro surveillance network. Eventually, as TMB moved increasingly towards IP solutions, it also incorporated Siqura encoders into its system to transmit IP streams. Business relations such as this as well as that between TMB and Indra are integral to making sure that a surveillance system is working optimally and doing what it is supposed to do, and in this case, that is ensuring the safety and smooth operation of the Barcelona Metro. A second glance at surveillance It’s true, operators working in the TMB central control room can recognize all the pickpockets ambling the underground. Yet, countering petty theft is not the purpose of this CCTV system. Today, the TMB surveillance network facilitates the operation and safety of one of the largest metro systems in Europe. It is designed and implemented in such a way so as to protect the privacy of the public as well as to keep commuters safe, all the while guaranteeing that trains will run on time.

Securing a strategic city with new surveillance systems
Securing a strategic city with new surveillance systems

Known to some as the home of mariachi music and to others as the home of a great number of renowned writers and artists, Guadalajara is without a doubt a major cultural hub of Latin America. It is also the second largest city in Mexico and the capital of the state of Jalisco, making Guadalajara a strategic place for both businesses and government. It is therefore not surprising that the municipality is modernising its internal revenue and land registry offices with new IP-based CCTV surveillance systems. Safely transferring fundsThe surveillance system is intended to ensure the secure transfer of funds and to protect the safety of the office staff during daily operations at nine different offices. The installed cameras therefore monitor areas where monetary transactions occur, such as at the tax collection windows, as well as various personnel workplaces. Heading up the project is the municipality of Guadalajara. A select group of the city's civil servants are working with a local support team of engineers from the international distributor, Rios Representaciones Internacionales, and the Mexican installer company, Ingeniería en Telecomunicaciones e Informática (ITISA). Together, they are setting up a centralised video surveillance network. The system will register the activities occurring in each of the buildings. Working alongside the core deployment team is TKH Security Solutions USA, manufacturer of advanced video surveillance solutions marketed under the Siqura and Optelecom brand names. TKH Security Solutions USA is providing cameras, storage, software, and support.A Siqura solutionUsing the existing IT network and Cisco switches, engineers from Siqura and the tax collection office IT personnel have designed and deployed a virtual LAN (VLAN) for the security system. VLAN enhances network performance as well as the security of the system. It connects the offices through a fibre link. From a variety of locations and situations, Siqura IP cameras will transmit image material to the video management system (VMS), Siqura VMS Pro, at a centralised control room. From there, operators can ensure the safety and security of both personnel and property.Siqura VMS Pro is a multiserver, multi-user IP surveillance management system used for monitoring real-time and recorded video, audio, and text data, and to control cameras and I/O devices. The software supports surveillance systems consisting of digital IP cameras and recorders in IP surveillance networks. Through the intelligent search options and event handling included in Siqura VMS Pro, relevant recordings will be saved on one of ten hardware network video recorders (Siqura i-NVR Compact). Ultimately, this enables personnel to verify the immediate safety of the tax collection offices, their employees and visitors, as well as to use video images for forensic verification when necessary.A successful startAlthough the implementation of the project is still underway, the system is already up and running in two offices, with pleasing results. "TKH Security Solutions USA has provided excellent support in designing, configuring, and installing the software and the cameras," said Raul Rios, director of Rio's Representaciones Internacionales. "The equipment was tested in the local network. We enlarged selected material to test the image quality and examined the cameras' ability to cope with various lighting conditions. After adjusting the lens, the system performance has proven to be perfect."

Dedicated Micros provides National Bank of Kuwait with ATM surveillance solution
Dedicated Micros provides National Bank of Kuwait with ATM surveillance solution

Security for banks can be a real challenge when faced with a multitude of threats including: fraud, theft and physical attacks. One bank which is setting new standards in the Middle East, when it comes to the application of surveillance technology to keep its infrastructure, staff and customers safe and secure, is National Bank of Kuwait (NBK). This is thanks to the roll out of an advanced NetVu Connected CCTV solution from Dedicated Micros part of AD Group which is focused on the centralised monitoring of all of its branches and critical ATM infrastructure.Awarded the Best Bank in the Middle East 2010 accolade by EuroMoney, National Bank of Kuwait (NBK), which was incorporated in 1952 as the first indigenous bank in the entire Gulf region, remains the preeminent banking institution in Kuwait as well as being an established banking franchise across the Middle East and supporting a large branch network, spanning 17 countries, including many of the world's financial and business centres.Dedicated Micros connection with National Bank of Kuwait stretches back over four years. The catalyst for the surveillance specialist being brought on board for this ambitious ATM protection project was the bank's dissatisfaction with the CCTV solutions it tested from other providers. A spokesperson for the Engineering Services Division, NBK, takes up the story: "We looked at and tested several brands of DVRs as potential answers to our pressing ATM surveillance needs before deciding to go ultimately with Dedicated Micros. The solutions that fell by the wayside were simply too cumbersome and complicated in terms of all the extra equipment (and software licenses) that would have been required to activate the functionality we wanted. This was in stark contrast to Dedicated Micros which was able to meet our needs based around an effective hardware-based package." Said Salim Idris, General Manager (Middle East), Dedicated Micros: "When contacted by NBK we were delighted to assist Kuwait's foremost banking establishment, not only were we able to demonstrate that we had the solutions available, such as the DV-IP ATM, that could address their specific requirements head-on, without lots of add-ons, but could also point to an unparallelled track record. To put our extensive experience, protecting the banking sector, into some sort of context, across the Gulf Cooperation Council area alone, we can now count 10 major banks - in Bahrain, Dubai, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Saudi Arabia - as customers. Significantly, as our CCTV systems are embedded, rather than PC based, they are recognised for their stability - essential in the banking environment - whereas PC dependent solutions have a reputation for crashing without warning."ATM FocusLooking in more detail at the systems from Dedicated Micros which have been put in place at NBK, since 2006, to support the effective monitoring of vital local and overseas ATM related infrastructure. These comprise 28 individual DV-IP ATM units which are used primarily to protect standalone Automated Teller Machines, with numbers expected to rise as part of the ongoing ATM project. There are also 145 NetVu Connected DS2 DVRs, with typically two systems connected at each National Bank of Kuwait branch plus an associated RAID (Redundant Array of Independent Disks) unit giving additional storage capacity to the existing internal hard disk of the DVR.This set-up offers redundancy and resilience to ensure any recorded video images are securely stored. In the case of the larger Dubai branch this combination was doubled up and four (DS2s and RAIDs) were installed at NBK's extensive Bahrain site. To help with the management of the geographically dispersed NetVu Connected CCTV infrastructure, at an early stage, Dedicated Micros was called upon to assist NBK in the setting-up of centralised monitoring from a control room. This was achieved by deploying NetVu Observer video management software to allow operators to seamlessly view distributed images from any NetVu Connected product.     DV-IP ATM units from Dedicated Micros have proved useful in making transactions more secure and safe  The robust DV-IP ATM units specified for the National Bank of Kuwait project are designed to work, primarily, within the confines of an Automated Teller Machine. Certainly the security challenges with regards to banking are most keenly felt when it comes to the safe operation of Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) whose accessibility makes them a convenient target for card skimming, shoulder surfing, and even physical theft from customers. It is CCTV systems, specifically remotely accessible DVRs, that are at the very heart of efforts to deal with these types of threat.Combining Video and Transaction DataThe Dedicated DV-IP ATM, based on NetVu Connected technology which ensures its interoperability with other DM and AD Group systems, is able to process transaction data which is then recorded with video footage. Post event analysis, via a powerful text search engine, provides video imagery of the ATM user plus the associated transaction information. For NBK this allows security staff to deal with any fraudulent activity and ensures that customer services representatives are well placed to quickly resolve any genuine customer withdrawal disputes.Marrying up the DS2 DVRs with RAID units at every NBK branch, also facilitated the effective monitoring of each location including the in-branch ATMs not covered by the DV-IP ATMs. With, in this case, the cameras in the ATMs connected to the DVRs which had been specifically programmed to have the capability to associate transaction data with the appropriate video footage.The ability of both the DV-IP ATM systems and DS2 DVRs, deployed for the NBK project, to apply Dedicated Micros' TransCoding technology to record evidential quality MJPEG locally and simultaneously support low bit rate data streaming in MPEG-4 compression format for remote viewing has proved to be advantageous in keeping bandwidth demands on NBK's network to an absolute minimum. Of course local recording (including the additional capacity provided by the RAID units) has the added benefit that, even in the event of a network failure, recording is not interrupted or vital evidence lost. Adding-Up the Benefits  NetVu connected solution from Dedicated Micros has enabled National Bank of Kuwait to monitor all the branches Reflecting on the success of the project to date, a spokesperson for the Engineering Services Division, NBK, commented: "The NetVu Connected solution from Dedicated Micros we have adopted has given us the opportunity, for the first time, to monitor all of our branches remotely 24/7 wherever they might be and to cover a large number of ATMs (181 at the latest count) through the ATM transactions interface. We have been very pleased with the performance of the NetVu Observer viewing software over the past four years - which we are in the process of upgrading to Pick-a-Point Icon - as it has made it extremely easy to retrieve footage and to playback recordings over the network. With numerous cases involving ATMs reported on a daily basis and, with the Dedicated Micros' solution in place, we have been able to provide recorded footage, in a timely manner, to offer proof of what has actually happened. In practice, we have found the speed that video can be delivered across the network to be extremely favourable, for management and archiving, when set against the limited bandwidth provided."The distributed architecture of the solution has also meant that even, when there has been a network issue, critical recording has been able to continue unabated. Testament to this is the fact that since the start of the project no footage has been lost in this way. A major benefit we have also seen, in terms of cost of ownership, is the fact that from an Engineering Services' point of view the DVRs have been much easier to maintain, compared to what was in place before, and we have been very impressed with the stability of the DVRs in operation with zero reported failures. Alongside this the web-based configuration for the Dedicated Micros' systems has proved to be very intuitive."Future Plans Looking ahead, Dedicated Micros is working closely with NBK to expand the capabilities of the surveillance infrastructure. One key development soon to go 'live' is the implementation of the Pick-a-Point Icon multi-site video management solution in the bank's main control room to further enhance the remote monitoring of all of the bank's geographically dispersed locations. The uplift in functionality provided by Pick-a-Point Icon's more extensive features, compared to NetVu Observer, should greatly enhance the ability of the bank's security staff to manage and control their CCTV infrastructure.     Dedicated Micros has formed many of the building blocks for the success of today's CCTV industry From the start Pick-A-Point Icon has been designed to be intuitive for operators, simplifying and speeding up image retrieval. In future, operators in the main NBK control room will be able to select cameras using Pick-A-Point Icon's enhanced GUI (Graphical User Interface) via multiple map screens and highly detailed map images, allowing them to pick a camera on-screen without having to know which digital video recorder the camera is linked to. Pick-A-Point Icon is based around a robust standalone hardware based workstation, which eliminates the reliability issues associated with PC based systems - a key consideration in the banking sector.Closed IPTV InvestmentCommented Salim Idris, General Manager (Middle East), Dedicated Micros: "As the surveillance solution moves ahead, we are delighted that National Bank of Kuwait has confirmed that it will also act as a trailblazer for the deployment of our award winning Closed IPTV 'IP Video' solution. This follows on from the successful testing of the Closed IPTV version of the SD Advanced hybrid NVR/DVR, which will now be rolled out gradually across all of the bank's extensive branch network, making NBK one of the first customers in the Middle East region for this new solution."Essentially, adopting Closed IPTV systems such as the SD Advanced - in conjunction with a Layer 3 Enhanced CCTV Switch which provides greater security for less configuration effort than a conventional managed switch - makes deploying an IP Video, CCTV system safe, secure and simple. Combining patent-pending innovation with zeroconf networking technology, Closed IPTV automatically allocates IP addresses to IP cameras by physical port. In this way the system is completely deterministic, creating firewalls and monitoring IP connections by individual network ports so they cannot be hacked or intercepted. This ground breaking solution provides a very simple and secure answer to IP Video, where no prior knowledge of IP networking is required. National Bank of Kuwait is going to adopt Dedicated Micros' HyperSense APNR cameras for its car park management A further enhancement, in the pipeline for NBK, is the adoption of Dedicated Micros' HyperSense ANPR cameras for its car park management, in this case combining an Overview and ANPR camera, with alerts triggered by car park barriers to monitor vehicles entering and leaving a location. The sophisticated HyperSense technology built in to the cameras removes ambient light from the scene leaving only the objects that strongly reflect the IR light emitted by the integrated invisible IR LED flash to be displayed. The ability to eliminate glare from vehicle headlights delivers a more distinct image for evidential purposes and the black and white ANPR camera ensures that details of the numberplate can be seen, whilst the 'overview' camera allows this to be tied-up with other details such as the colour of the vehicle.Banking on SecurityUltimately, National Bank of Kuwait, through continuing investment in the latest surveillance infrastructure from Dedicated Micros, has demonstrated a real commitment to not only be a leader in the banking services it provides but also, crucially, to back this up with the best possible levels of security for customers, staff, and physical assets such as the branch network and ATMs making NBK ideally placed to deal expeditiously with any form of criminal attack.