Article | November 8, 2012

IP Surveillance Integrators Face Storage Challenges

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By Sarah Colson, OEM Marketing Associate, Seneca Data Distributors

The digital security and surveillance market has seen a lot of focus on the benefits of using an open platform IP solution. In the past analog users used a single vendor and chose one type of solution. Today’s video storage solutions allow integrators to build the best surveillance system that is tailored for the customer’s needs. With IP technology video storage can be optimized with different components that maximize performance. However, this method can be costly for smaller installations which can limit the flexibility of small installations.

Video Storage Trends

Low Cost Storage: There has been a steady rise for low cost storage such as network attached storage (NAS) devices. NAS provides a realistic option for projects that require fewer cameras which have the ability to be tailored and targeted to high resolution recording devices in video surveillance solutions.

Improved Compression: We are starting to see more and more storage capabilities. H.264 has strongly become the industry standard. Improved compression allows for exceptional retention times which will significantly lower costs in the long run.

SD Cards: SD cards are changing the way the market is handling small camera deployments. In my past blog, SD Cards for Digital Security and Surveillance, I discuss this in greater detail with the emphasis and impact on edge recording. SD cards are making IP surveillance affordable for small camera deployments.

Integrator Challenges

Integrators main focus should be on exactly what the customer’s storage needs entail. Engaging with the customer will allow the integrator to properly calculate the storage, avoiding unnecessary costs. There are many requirements to consider when determining the appropriate storage such as the number of cameras, resolutions, compression, VBR or CBR, bit rate, frame rate, retentions, scene activity, bandwidth, etc. It is very important for integrators to tailor storage solutions based on each project and to not over or under specify the storage.

IT Integrators Selling Video Storage

The most important thing for IT integrators to learn is a combination of knowledge of surveillance trends, networking, storage and server hardware, and software. Many video management software platforms (VMS) provide extensive training of their software and how it works with video surveillance hardware applications. Hardware manufacturers also provide this type of training available to IT integrators. Taking advantage of these training can make a world of difference. Camera manufacturers also have training to understand aspects such as image capture, compression, software design, and redundancy.

Seneca is a manufacturer of digital security and surveillance solutions. Being able to understand the importance of scaling storage properly can make or break the success of any deployment. If you would like more information about storage or server training please comment below with your contact information or email me at

Sarah Colson is an OEM Marketing Associate for Seneca where she is responsible for marketing and communications for digital security, signage, broadcast, and healthcare.