Camera elements

Installing a network camera

Once a network camera has been purchased, the way it is installed is just as important.


To best achieve high-quality video surveillance based on camera positioning and environmental considerations, follow these recommendations:

Surveillance objective

If the aim is to get an overview of an area to be able to track the movement of people or objects, make sure a camera that is suitable for the task is placed in a position that achieves the objective. If the intention is to be able to identify a person or object, the camera must be positioned or focused in a way that will capture the level of detail needed for identification purposes. Local police authorities may also be able to provide guidelines on how best to position a camera.

Use lots of light or add light if needed

It is normally easy and cost-effective to add strong lamps in both indoor and outdoor situations to provide the necessary light conditions for capturing good images.

Avoid direct sunlight

As it will “blind” the camera and can reduce the performance of the image sensor. If possible, position the camera with the sun shining from behind the camera.

Avoid backlight

This problem typically occurs when attempting to capture an object in front of a window. To avoid this problem, reposition the camera or use curtains and close blinds if possible. If it is not possible to reposition the camera, add frontal lighting. Cameras with support for wide dynamic range are better at handling a backlight scenario.

Reduce the dynamic range of the scene

In outdoor environments, viewing too much sky results in too high a dynamic range. If the camera does not support wide dynamic range, a solution is to mount the camera high above the ground, using a pole if needed.

Adjust camera settings

It may be necessary at times to adjust settings for white balance, brightness and sharpness to obtain an optimal image. In low light situations, users must also prioritize either frame rate or image quality.

Legal considerations

Video surveillance can be restricted or prohibited by laws that vary from country to country. It is advisable to check the laws in the local region before installing a video surveillance system. It may be necessary, for instance, to register or get a license for video surveillance, particularly in public areas. Signage may be required. Video recordings may require time and date stamping. There may be rules regulating how long video should be retained. Audio recordings may or may not be permitted.

Remote zoom, remote focus and pixel counter functions