PTZ cameras are the first line of defence for many hi-commercial businesses and government compounds. PTZ cameras are named for their ability to Pan, Tilt, and Zooming to about 300 yards plus to focus in on license plates, faces of suspects who breach certain security zones, and other objects.
Listed below are all of our Analog PTZ cameras, many people who want PTZ cameras, amy wish to upgrade to IP PTZ Cameras. You may wish to also see our auto tracking boxes for PTZ Security Cameras or our PTZ camera accessories.
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About PTZ Security Cameras
So what does the "PTZ" stand for?
PTZ stands for pan, tilt, and zoom.
PTZ security cameras are some of the advanced security cameras on the market. Having the ability to pan a security camera to the left and right, tilt it up or down, and zoom at long distances makes PTZ cameras provide the ability to give total coverage for a given area, however there is a higher costs in both purchasing price and operating costs.
Most of the time PTZ security cameras are manually operated by security personnel, although there are some that have self-tracking technology built into the brain. Because of their cost and the need for an operator, PTZ security cameras are rarely used in residential areas.
Most security applications that call for the kind of long distance, flexible coverage provided by PTZ cameras are in commercial and government organizations or large discount and department stores. However, Pan Tilt Zoom Cameras are getting cheaper and models with auto tracking modes are making it possible to not have to supply a guard, radically reducing their operating costs. Auto-tracking PTZ cameras cost around a thousand dollars, making them a very expensive to purchase comparatively, but they can be much less expensive long term as you may not need to pay a security guard. The independence, flexibility, 24/7 peace-of-mind is a big draw.
Controlling PTZ Cameras
The most common way to control a PTZ camera is through the use of a PTZ camera joystick and keyboard. A security guard is expensive, but still the most preferred way of monitoring. In the future, Sony says that Ipela technology will allow PTZ security cameras to monitor themselves and can predict security breaches based on complex algorithms. The newest and best way to control a PTZ camera is through Security DVR software. Most DVR software have a toggle interface from left to right, and up and down, which can all be operated with the click of a mouse. The last way is by remote, we have a device now where you connect to your PTZ camera and zoom the lens in and out and pan the camera.
Zoom Out To Very Long Distances Using PTZ Cameras
If you need to record video from over 450 yards away, then PTZ security cameras are your only option. There are some very high powered lenses on the market, although the picture may get a little distorted at the maximum setting. It is important to not go overboard; never use a 32X lens on a PTZ camera in a residential setting. Most high powered lenses are in government applications and homeland security.
Optical Zoom Are The Best Lens
A Pan Tilt Zoom lens, by definition, is an optical device with perfect or approximate axial symmetry which transmits and refracts light, converging or diverging the beam. For a good picture of how optical zoom lens works check out this PTZ Optical Zoom Lens. Optical lenses harness the power of light and a complex reactionary lens to get you a better zoom distance and picture. There are many levels of optical zoom, such as 10X, 20X, 22X, 32X, and 55X optical zoom.
You want to be carefully when shopping around for PTZ cameras: optical zoom is and digital zoom are very differnt. Optical zoom physically moves the lens and zoom in without decreasing picture quality. Digital zooming reduces picture quality and results in terrible resolution! Stay away from digital zooming PTZ security cameras.
Pan Tilt Zoom Auto-Tracking
A PTZ security camera's auto-tracking feature makes it an extremely useful surveillance device. Auto tracking, as you might imagine, allows PTZ cameras to track objects. With the ability to recess-mount smaller Pan Tilt Zoom cameras with a 10X time optical zoom, a typical home-based CCTV system becomes much more effective.
How PTZ Camera Auto Tracking Works
Auto-tracking works on a series of presets. You can have many preset positions for the PTZ camera to return to a home position after it has finished watching an object that has left it's field-of-vision. Once an item has entered the PTZ security camera's field-of-vision it proceeds to zoom in on the target and it pans in any direction until it leaves it's field of view (FOV). With DVR software getting more advanced you can receive emailed photos, or sample clips of live video when one of the PTZ cameras is activated by changes in pixels from moving objects.
PTZ Security Cameras Have Night & Day Monitoring
PTZ cameras have very low lux settings, which means that they can capture video in low light conditions.
(Lux rating is the measurement of the amount of light that is necessary for the camera to capture video. A PTZ camera with a lower lux rating means that it can capture video in less light.)
There are some model now that have infrared lights like infrared security cameras, which give you a high resolution black and white image at night. The brain in the PTZ camera lens has the ability to see color in the night. Larger chip-sets make recording color video at night easier.
You Can Recess Mount PTZ Security Cameras
One of the main concerns when purchasing a PTZ security camera for government work, is the ability to mount it professionally, with the idea of concealing it's appearance. Although in most commercial uses, PTZ security cameras are intentionally quite noticeable to deter crime. So, most companies use Mini PTZ Cameras with recessed mounts. These mini PTZ cameras have a 10X optical zoom and can see out to like 100 yards (as compared to the 35X of commercial models).
You may also want to consult our PTZ Cameras FAQ.