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Buying Outdoor Security Cameras

Choosing the Best Outdoor Security Cameras

When it comes to the safety of your home and property, outdoor surveillance cameras can play an important part in keeping an eye on what's happening — even when you're away from home.

There are several things to consider when you're looking for the right outdoor surveillance system for your needs:

  • Resolution: The higher the resolution, the easier it will be to see details of what's captured in the footage. Unlike previous generations of outdoor security cameras, which played back grainy footage, an HD security camera provides an in-depth view of the surrounding areas. If you choose a camera with digital zoom, the resolution will affect how much you can see in detail when you zoom in on the image. In addition, night vision technology allows you to see and record footage at night using infrared sensors.

  • Motion Detection: If you plan to monitor security on your own, motion detection is an important feature. The outdoor camera will send you a notification when it senses movement so that you don't have to worry about constantly checking the live video feed.

  • Coverage: Depending on how many different areas you want to cover, you may need multiple cameras to capture footage around your property. If your primary reason for installing an outdoor camera is to keep an eye on package deliveries, for example, then a single camera may be all you need. However, if your goal is to keep an eye on your entire property, then you'll need to install multiple cameras. Most surveillance systems allow you to start with a basic kit and add more cameras later as needed. To find the right amount of coverage, you'll also want to look at the camera's field of view, which tells you how wide an area the camera can capture and helps you figure out where to place multiple cameras to eliminate gaps in coverage. A camera that tilts or pans when it senses motion can cover a wider area and reduce the total number of cameras that you'll need.

  • Audio: If your outdoor security cameras include a microphone, you'll be able to hear what's going on as well as seeing the footage. Two-way audio includes both a microphone and speaker so that you can communicate remotely with anyone who shows up on your property.

  • Wiring and Connectivity: You can choose between a wired surveillance camera, wireless camera, or wire-free camera (also called a Wi-Fi camera). Wired outdoor cameras connect directly to a power source and use an Ethernet cord to connect to your network. Wireless outdoor security cameras use a wire to connect to the power source and connect wirelessly to your network. Wire-free outdoor cameras use battery power to eliminate wires altogether and connect either through a hub or your Wi-Fi network. If you plan to use a system that connects wirelessly to your network, you may need a Wi-Fi extender in order to reach all of the cameras on your property.

Other Security Devices

Along with installing a security camera system, you may want to consider other devices that can help protect your home and property. Smart security lighting turns on when it senses motion and can even send you an alert on your smartphone to let you know when someone is there. A video doorbell lets you see and communicate with visitors remotely. Plus, you can step up security inside your home with indoor security cameras.

Outdoor Camera Installation and Monitoring

When choosing an outdoor security camera system, you'll need to decide how you want to monitor your security. Professional monitoring gives you 24/7 protection, with quick response for emergencies such as a fire or burglary. If you want to monitor security on your own, a stand-alone system allows you to view live video feeds and receive alerts on your smartphone or by e-mail. Keep in mind that some products may require subscription-based monitoring to access additional features.

You can either install your security system on your own or have it professionally installed. For professional security camera installation, give Geek Squad® a call. They can get everything set up and show you how to get the most out of your security system.