Outdoor security cameras are an important part of comprehensive surveillance coverage and the first line of defense in protecting your business or property. In addition to capturing evidence of criminals such as burglars and intruders, security cameras for outside use can help deter these activities.
With so many security camera choices available, choosing the right one for your specific surveillance needs might feel overwhelming. Whether you want security cameras for our entrances, driveway, backyard, walkways, parking lot, or perimeter fence monitoring needs, it’s important to first understand how outdoor cameras work, what options you have, the features that matter most and how to choose the best security cameras for exterior use.
How Outdoor Security Cameras Work
Outdoor security cameras systems can either be connected to a central monitoring point through a Digital Video Recorder (DVR) that supports analog and HD security cameras or a Network Video Recorder (NVR) that supports IP security cameras so that the homeowner or business owners can see and access everything that the security cameras for outside use see.
You can also record surveillance footage to access at a later time or even program them to record surveillance videos at specific times, upon demand or when they sense motion. Security camera systems by CCTV Security Pros feature remote viewing capabilities that allow users to monitor outdoor areas from anywhere and at any time on their PCs, smartphones, tablets or any other Internet-enabled devices with no monthly fees.
Types of Outdoor Security Cameras
Outdoor security cameras are becoming ever more popular, and as demand rises, so does the different unique needs and the wide range of applications for these security cameras. The overall result is a fast-growing surveillance market of different types of security cameras for outside use. This is great news for both businesses and homeowners who now have a broader range of choices to choose from.
There are different types of outdoor security cameras, with each type best suitable for specific applications:
- Pan-tilt-zoom cameras - Ideal for monitoring large areas and capturing different angles.
- Infrared security cameras - Perfect for quality day and night surveillance.
- Dome security cameras - Suited for entry points and wide-angle monitoring needs.
- Bullet security cameras - Suited for wall or ceiling mount and ideal for entrances.
- Weatherproof & vandal proof cameras - A must-have for outdoor surveillance needs.
Why You Should Choose IP & HD Security Cameras
IP security cameras are a most popular new surveillance standard and operate over CAT5/6 Ethernet cable. With the advancements in IP camera technology, you can enjoy high definition surveillance with outdoor IP security cameras that can connect with your PC smartphone or tablet to ensure real-time video monitoring from nearly anywhere in the world.
Why IP security cameras are great for outdoor surveillance:
- High resolutions of 1080p up to 4K Ultra HD
- Perfect for new buildings with CAT5/6 cable wiring
- Simple installation with a single POE (Power over Ethernet) cable
- Less cable work and maintenance meaning more versatility
- Wired security cameras are highly recommended, but wireless options are available
Another popular option, HD security cameras offer reliable performance for your outdoor surveillance system and are considered the old standard. With HD 1080p resolution, you can enjoy excellent image clarity and detail. Some models also feature infrared illuminators that offer remarkable low-light performance both day and night. HD-over-coax cameras are also a great option for those who want to upgrade from analog cameras.
What to Look for in Outdoor Security Cameras
Every year, IP and HD outdoor security camera technologies advance, meaning more features. Here are some of the most important features to look for in security cameras for outside use:
- Video Resolution - A camera with at least 3MP is recommended, The higher, the better. Higher resolution means you can increase the chances of positively identifying faces and even clearly seeing license plates, especially at night. A security camera for exterior use that offers at least 1080p resolution will be worth the investment.
- Field of View (FOV) - Security cameras with a high FOV will be able to cover a greater area, but the perspective will appear to be from further away. You may consider a wide-angle (high FOV) camera to get a view of an entire parking lot, as well as a long-range (low FOV) camera directed to entry & exit points as part of the same system.
- Weatherproofing and Vandal-Resistant - These two aspects are what really make outdoor security cameras what they are - they should be able to withstand extreme weather conditions and stand up against any form of vandalism. Check to make sure that the security cameras for outside use you’re buying have a high IP waterproof rating (Stick with IP66 or more) and the highest possible vandal resistance, especially if you’re installing cameras lower than 7 feet from the ground.
- Night Vision - Infrared features are a must-have for outdoor security cameras. Depending on the overall size of your property and surveillance needs, you’ll want to double-check how far you’ll want to see into the dark with your cameras. This will help you buy low-light, day/night infrared security cameras with the farthest night vision capabilities, even in complete darkness.
- Storage - Decide what storage option best suits your home or business - local storage via USB drive or micro SD or cloud storage. How much storage will you need and how would you like to access the recorded footage? Keep in mind that HD videos take up more storage space. To avoid paying monthly fees, consider having your outside security cameras record only when motion is detected to local storage that you can easily access.
- Not Fully Internet-Reliant - While everyone has unique needs and preferences, it’s best to opt for outdoor security cameras that can still function well without an internet connection, and with the ability to capture images and record videos to a local device like a DVR.
- Advanced Recorder Features - Look out for additional features in security cameras for exterior use like built-in NVR or DVR features, motion detection, push email and phone notification alerts, continuous video recording, two-way audio support, PIR sensors to reduce false alerts, among others.
Professional-Grade Outdoor Security Cameras
Whether you want IP or HD security cameras for outside use or want to learn more about the security camera and system options you have, visit us at CCTV Security Pros. Learn more about our wide range of security products at our Learning Center or contact us for assistance with product selection and orders.