What is NVR & What are the Pros & Cons of NVR?

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Network Video Recorder (NVR)

NVR

The Network Video Recorder, also known as the NVR, is another essential element to any IP camera system. Connected to the same IP network, the NVR can be installed virtually anywhere in your building or home. The NVR allows you to record and store video on a hard drive, snap images and transmit them to your computer or remote device for live and recorded viewing. Network Video Recorders usually have multiple channels for inputting security camera feeds, and are an all-in-one place for combining feeds and keeping a comprehensive eye on your surveillance feeds.

NVR’s differ mainly from DVR’s in that they record video from IP cameras, while DVR’s mainly record analog-based video to a digital format.

NVR Security System – Pros & Cons

NVR security camera systems incorporate the newest technology to provide an enhanced, feature-rich security system. Also known as POE security camera systems, NVR based systems are more flexible and complex than DVR systems.

Camera Type – IP Camera
As NVR systems process the video data at the camera rather than on the recorder, the cameras in NVR systems are much more robust than their DVR counterparts. NVR systems use IP cameras which are standalone image capturing devices. IP cameras each have a chipset which is capable of processing the video data which is then transmitted to a recorder. Unlike analog cameras, IP cameras are typically all capable of recording and sending audio as well as video. The more powerful hardware on IP cameras also enables improved smart functionality and video analytics, such as facial recognition.

Cable – Ethernet
Like DVR systems, NVR systems connect the camera to the recorder. However, how they connect the camera to the recorder is entirely different. NVR systems use standard Ethernet cables, such as cat5e and cat6, to transmit data. Professional installers prefer ethernet cables due to the number of advantages compared to coaxial cables:

  • Ethernet cable powers the camera using Power over Ethernet (PoE), which means your camera needs one cable running to capture video, audio, and power the camera, thus eliminating the need for messy splitters like a DVR system.
  • Ethernet cable tends to be easier to route and terminate because it is thinner and has a smaller connector allowing for less drilling.
  • Ethernet is cheaper than coaxial cable and much more readily available, making cable replacement or system expansion more accessible and affordable. Many modern homes and businesses are being built wired for Ethernet, making installation even easier.
  • An added advantage of Ethernet cable is that every camera on the system can transmit audio since Ethernet can send audio data natively.
  • Cables do not need to run between every camera and the recorder. They need to be on the same wireless network. Installation is more straightforward and cleaner as multiple cables aren’t required.
  • Despite a shorter max Ethernet cable length, 328ft or 100m, network switches can be used to extend total distance without impacting image quality.

Recorder
Unlike a DVR system, the recorder in an NVR system doesn’t process video data. That step is completed at the camera before it is transmitted. NVR recorders are only used for storing and viewing the footage.

System Flexibility
NVR systems are inherently more flexible because security cameras don’t necessarily have to be physically connected directly to the recorder. Instead, IP cameras only have to be on the same network. As such, you could feasibly have cameras all over the world on the same network that connect to your NVR can then be viewed as a comprehensive system.

Image & Audio Quality
As NVR recorders receive a pure digital signal from the cameras, video quality is better than compared to a DVR at the same resolution. In addition, as Ethernet cables carry audio, all cameras with microphones could record audio to the NVR.