Security of property is an important consideration for residential and commercial establishments alike. While CCTV cameras made it easier to keep a vigilant eye on our property, IP cameras have gone a step above and enabled us to monitor our properties from anywhere around the world. 

While setting up IP cameras requires professional help, if you possess a decent computer and network knowledge, this guide would help you in networking IP cameras without any external assistance. So without any further ado, let’s get started!

What are IP cameras?

Before beginning it makes sense to know what these are. So every one of us is aware of CCTV cameras, they use an analog signal to transfer video to a central on-site location. IP cameras are digital video cameras that transmit and receive data over the internet or network. Each IP or internet protocol camera has an IP address and requires a network connection. 

Once they capture an image or video they compress the files and transfer them over the network. You can connect them wirelessly via a Wi-Fi router, through an Ethernet cable, or to a broadband modem and view the images from literally anywhere around the world at any time. A thing to note is that you only need the internet if you would like to have remote viewing capabilities. 

Things you require to set up an IP camera network

Before beginning with the process, you must have the required equipment. Make sure to check every single piece of equipment mentioned below is available to you:

PoE Switch

First of all, you’ll need a PoE switch which stands for Power over Ethernet switch. It does the function of powering devices using network cables. It is different from regular switches as it let’s network cables carry electrical power and thereby serve two functions. 

Security camera recorder

Now you’d need a central place to put all the data that has been recorded by the camera. You can use a DVR or NVR for this purpose. NVR is especially suitable for an IP setup as it allows streaming video/data on a single cable. 

IP Security camera

Now comes the most important and indispensable part of the whole setup. These cameras capture the intended videos or images and transmit them digitally to the NVR system. The camera has two ports, one is for power and the other for the network. As mentioned earlier, if you are using a PoE cable, you won’t have to worry about the power port as the PoE cable would serve a dual purpose. However, if that’s not the case, you’ll require a separate power input too. 

These IP cameras are different from the traditional CCTV analog cameras as they provide several functionalities. You can pan or zoom either remotely or via operator command, the whole system requires less investment both long term and short term. Also, this technology is future proof. 

CAT5e or CAT6 Network Cable

Now you need a CAT5e or CAT6 network cable that connects cameras, PoE switches, and an NVR system. It is also called UTP cable and it has replaced the traditionally used coaxial cables which were relevant for analog CCTV systems. UTP is a general-purpose cable that can be used for several things such as Ethernet, serial communication, T1 lines, and others. 

Internet Service Provider/ Router for remote video surveillance

As already mentioned, you won’t need the internet for operating IP cameras, it is only when you wish to use them remotely that you require the internet. 

How to connect the IP camera network?

Now let’s directly head to the process involved in connecting the IP cameras to the network. You’ll have to follow the process mentioned below:

  • Connect the whole system

Physically connect the security camera recorder to the network and make sure that all the necessary connections are done that are required to operate the camera physically. 

  • Change the recorder’s IP address to match the network

The first thing you need to do is change the Internet protocol address of the recorder before proceeding with the connection of the cameras. You’ll need to set the IP in such a way that it conforms to the static IP address of the network. You can take the help of Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol to help obtain the correct IP address. 

  • Verify that the NVR is communicating with the network

It is important that you proceed with this step carefully and you can use the Ping command to perform it without any glitches. 

  • Initialize the Cameras

Now the step you have to follow is to initialize your cameras. After completing this step you would be able to start recording and use the camera in an intended way. 

  • Access IP camera system through the internet

If you wish to remotely view the live footage of your camera or control them while sitting on another side of the earth, you could do so. First of all, set up the firewall inside your router and allow a request for access to your system through the system. This would allow your device to access the security cameras and control them from any part of the world. You can not only view the footage on your phone but also on tablets, Mac, PC, and others. 

Where to buy the best HD IP Cameras

Buying cameras is a long term investment. The one you buy would certainly be in continuous use for the next decade or so. This is why it becomes important to opt for solid, future-proof, and advanced networking IP cameras. At Platinum CCTV, we deal with everything related to the world of security cameras. Browse our store to buy the best IP cameras available on the internet. 

Not only are they easy to install but also give the best High Definition video quality. They come in indoor and outdoor (weatherproof) models. Also, each of them has an infrared night vision facility which allows you to see in pitch black conditions. 

Thank you for reading!