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Thoughts On Which Type Of System To Go For


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Hi,

 

Got a house project going on and looking to install a new alarm system and a CCTV system.  Ideally I would like a combined system but I think its unlikely I will get one that suits my needs (and budget).

 

From the alarm point of view I want a wired system and I need at least 12 detectors/switches.  I would like possibility of adding more in the future so maybe go for one with at least 16 inputs to be safe.

I would like the device to be able to be monitored over the web.  An android app would be nice but not a deal breaker.

I don't really want to pay a monthly fee for the service so I'm willing to pay more upfront for a system if necessary.

I would like it be able to send text messages and email when an alarm is triggered (or possibly to send a phone call informing rather than email or text).

Key fobs would be nice to reset system but again not a deal breaker.

 

From the CCTV point of view again I want a wired system.  It doesn't necessarily have to be PoE but from what I can gather these are the mostly widely available type of good quality camera.

I need at least 4 camera inputs.  Cameras will be mostly outdoor so IP rating needed, one camera maybe used indoor.

Picture quality is fairly important as I would like to be able to make out the face of someone.

Web monitoring is required and android app would be nice.  Again I'd rather be paying for everything upfront rather than monthly/yearly fees.

Recording will be needed for up to 30 days.

 

Any suggestions and recommendations for system which could meet this criteria?

 

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Richard-the-ninth

Alarm

Everyone you ask (or everyone who answers) will have their own preferred choice of make / model of panel. You may not like the look of the keypad that goes with brand "x" alarm and think that the keypad for brand "y" looks easier to use, it really is up to you since it will be you that has to use it and look at it every day.

 

CCTV

Get the best cameras you can afford for your budget, the higher the TVL rating the better the picture (In general)

Something to bear in mind when you install the cameras is often cameras are mounted high (Out of harms way) and so you can only see the top of a persons head so to "make out a persons face" you need to have the camera mounted lower down....................looking at their face (something a lot of people forget)

Recording time depends on several factors: Size of the hard drive storing the pictures, size of image to be recorded,  how many cameras are being recorded, are all cameras being recorded at the same time.

With most DVR's you can choose  / change these options, and most can send you a message  / picture if they "detect" something, but this is not recommended if the cameras are looking at changing scenery. I.e looking at a road, or trees, or........

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Andy™

texecom premier alarms have an app you can use, but it doesnt work on all panels. i think it does push messages too, but i use a separate gsm dialler for the calls

 

for cctv, depends how far you want to go and what image quality, as above, get one with more TVL, or you can get IP cameras that are networked. much better quality, but not as simple to setup or record, more so above 1080p. some of mine have a dedicated computer just for them. on the plus side, the software on the PC has an app to go with it for remote access. also possible to view previous recording, not just real time. for 30 days you may need large hard drives depending on record quality and number of cameras

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Been a while since I've worked on CCTV so I still think of DVRs & PSUs, not NVRs & PoE.

I don't want to hijack your post, but I'd also like to know if anyone's using power over network routers, cameras, recorders etc?

What's the point?

I doubt there's any difference in quality as suggested, or that they're the future of CCTV (whatever the manufacturers say).

Since they're not interchangeable I can think of some major disadvantages, like when you arrive to take over a system with a faulty camera, only to discover it's PoE, & will take 3 days to order a new one.

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Andy™

i dont use PoE on mine, each camera has a socket adjacent to network outlet for the PSU

 

i guess they do have the advantage of you only really need a 230v supply at the switch instead of each point, but since 230v is more my area than cat5, i put a socket next to each...

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i dont use PoE on mine, each camera has a socket adjacent to network outlet for the PSU

 

i guess they do have the advantage of you only really need a 230v supply at the switch instead of each point, but since 230v is more my area than cat5, i put a socket next to each...

Sensible, future-proof setup.

PoEs are just 12v cameras which would otherwise be run with "shotgun" cable.

Cat5 will be cheaper/thinner but that alone wouldn't persuade me to use them.

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steptoe

All my installs are the 'old' type shotgun 12v +RG6/RG56 type,

As said, to be recognisable, 12-14' max,  general area viewing, high level.

My own place has high level front and backfor general wide angle viewing , plus 12' front and back for actual recognising. 

Remember also, the lens size will change the viewing area/angle. 

Do NOT even consider anything under 700TVL, although I do have one camera at 420 I got gave to me, it's totally rubbish and I only use it as a wide area scan, it's a 6mm lens so suits a long thin-ish area ok. I certainly would never ever consider buying a camera of this resolution. 

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Done a bit of searching and like the look of the Texecom and Pyronix alarm systems.

 

Texecom Premier Elite system claim they can be integrated with CCTV systems but there is not much specific info on their website so I don't know whether they mean the cameras are fully integrated and can be monitored through their app or whether they simply use the PIR's from the system to trigger recording on a separate CCTV system.  I suspect it is the latter but it would be nice if you could get full integration.  I will probably try and call Texecom later to get clarification.

Another benefit I see of the Texecom system is the ability to integrate smoke and heat detectors which I had never thought of previously.

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Andy™

the texecom app does support cameras, but ive never tried it.i think its only to view them though, although some cameras do have alarm output connections which could be conected to the alarm. my camera program has its own app so only use that. but ask them - texecom tech support is probably the best you will find. and yes, you can also fit smoke / heat detectors too

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Richard-the-ninth

Another benefit I see of the Texecom system is the ability to integrate smoke and heat detectors which I had never thought of previously.

 

You don't want to do that, and for what its worth most panels can have smoke  /  heat detectors connected to them.

 

The reason you don't want to connect smoke / heat detectors to an intruder alarm is simple - sense of security. You get to thinking you are safe because you have smoke detectors on your intruder alarm so if fire breaks out you will be warned. Warned by what? You will have one maybe even two speakers that will make a low pitch sound that is too low or too quiet to wake you up, where as a stand alone or even interconnected smoke alarm has a higher pitch sounder and every smoke alarm has one so that is more sounders before you start.

 

If you really want to push the boat out you could always opt for a fire alarm...........but yes that really is pushing the boat way out.

 

 

CCTV and alarms, again, don't do it, seems a good idea but to actually do what? You don't need a PIR to operate a camera since the DVR is recording 24/7 anyway, if one is relying on the other and one fails / develops a fault you loose both. Stick to separate CCTV and alarm.

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You don't want to do that, and for what its worth most panels can have smoke  /  heat detectors connected to them.

 

The reason you don't want to connect smoke / heat detectors to an intruder alarm is simple - sense of security. You get to thinking you are safe because you have smoke detectors on your intruder alarm so if fire breaks out you will be warned. Warned by what? You will have one maybe even two speakers that will make a low pitch sound that is too low or too quiet to wake you up, where as a stand alone or even interconnected smoke alarm has a higher pitch sounder and every smoke alarm has one so that is more sounders before you start.

 

If you really want to push the boat out you could always opt for a fire alarm...........but yes that really is pushing the boat way out.

 

 

CCTV and alarms, again, don't do it, seems a good idea but to actually do what? You don't need a PIR to operate a camera since the DVR is recording 24/7 anyway, if one is relying on the other and one fails / develops a fault you loose both. Stick to separate CCTV and alarm.

I had assumed the smoke detectors would also have an internal sounder (more investigation required).

 

With regards to having separate system for CCTV I see where you are coming from as a single point of failure and I will need to assess pro and cons.  From what I can see though dedicated CCTV seems like it could be the way to go in terms of product support and availability.  Either way I'll question Texecom about the integration as I'm in the option.

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Richard-the-ninth

I had assumed the smoke detectors would also have an internal sounder (more investigation required).

 

 

No they don't, no point. An example is These (other suppliers are available) The other reason is current. Intruder alarms often can not supply a lot of current (keeps the costs down) so if each smoke detector had a sounder there would be a limit as to the number you could have depending on what else is on the system.

Then you have the problem of cable. An intruder smoke alarm can be installed on a 4 core cable, if it had a sounder it would need a 6 core cable, some alarm companies will only only install the basic minimum (4 core) Realisticly there is little difference in cost of  4 or 6 core cable but they will point out that if they can save a few £ here and a few £ there it all adds up

 

Stick to mains operated with battery back up smoke alarms, less hassle. (Oh and you can even get one that has an option silence / test button for all that are connected)

 

_______________________________

 

With CCTV what is the point of connecting it to an intruder alarm? I really don't see the point, since most "reasonable / good" DVR's will (if you want) notify you something has happened. But I would rather not know until I get back rather than let it spoil my day out / holiday.

 

At the end of the day its your choice if you want to be bothered by the local cat running into your drive or not

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Andy™

you can fit internal sirens to the alarm which you would not be sleeping through, but its easier to install mains smoke detectors. Aico are one of the best ones. only real advantage of connecting them to alarm or fire alarm panel is you can easily see from panel which detector triggered

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Doc Hudson

It can be very easy to over engineer and complicate what is a simple problem. The long term reliability and maintenance costs of some systems can soon outweigh the all singing and dancing, bells and whistles, gimmicks that often don't actually give you quite as much as you had hoped for. Think of the practical features you will genuinely need and how often you will need to use them, rather than fitting your requirements around all the options you can afford to buy.  Simplicity often equates to long term reliability and thus cost saving over the long term.

 

Doc H.   

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Integrated heat/smoke detectors have their place, eg if the client particularly wants to be notified (by SMS etc) if the smoke alarm triggers.

But they're only viable if a few well placed internal sounders will be easily heard throughout the house.

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If I can integrate the smokes/heats into my alarm (or any other of my monitored systems) it would be nice.

Not critical but I work away for at least 1/3 of the year so if one of them goes off while I'm away i'd like to be notified.

 

I suppose its a typical 1st world problem but my thoughts are I only get one chance at getting things right for 1st fix so just trying to plan in as best I can.

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NozSpark

Personally I'd stick with a standard mains linked smoke/heat alarms,,,, and if you are really wanting them to be linked to your house alarm use an aux relay base to connect them into the fire zone of the alarm panel

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Richard-the-ninth

If I can integrate the smokes/heats into my alarm (or any other of my monitored systems) it would be nice.

Not critical but I work away for at least 1/3 of the year so if one of them goes off while I'm away i'd like to be notified.

 

Why? please can you explain to me WHY?

 

Also, if you do that you will not know which one went off, it really is pointless and a waste of time, oh not to mention annoying for the neighbours....allow me to expand on that.

 

All external sounders must stop after 15 minutes, to make sure of this external sounders have an inbuilt 15 minute cut off timer. Sounds good.

If an auxiliary zone is activated the external sounders are pulsed, to differentiate between fire and intruder. Sounds good.

As its auxiliary it is meant to save lives, so it does not stop after 15 minutes. Since it pulses the output the external siren does not see that as 15 minutes (which is true, it is not 15 minutes of continual operation) so the external siren can and does pulse for hours / days or until some one hits it with a sledge hammer.

 

I will say its not all panels that will do this but most of them do, and as said you should also install additional internal sounders, which in turn means an additional power supply and battery to cope with demand,  its just not worth the money, effort and hassle

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Andy™

premier panels have an option for global bell duration. not sure if this is intruder only though. and i have smoke / heat detectors all connected to the alarm for similar reasons, im not there most of the time so if any do activate i know about it straight away and i can see which detectors have triggered. and with access to cameras, i can easily visually check if there is a problem or not

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Why? please can you explain to me WHY?

 

Also, if you do that you will not know which one went off, it really is pointless and a waste of time, oh not to mention annoying for the neighbours....allow me to expand on that.

 

All external sounders must stop after 15 minutes, to make sure of this external sounders have an inbuilt 15 minute cut off timer. Sounds good.

If an auxiliary zone is activated the external sounders are pulsed, to differentiate between fire and intruder. Sounds good.

As its auxiliary it is meant to save lives, so it does not stop after 15 minutes. Since it pulses the output the external siren does not see that as 15 minutes (which is true, it is not 15 minutes of continual operation) so the external siren can and does pulse for hours / days or until some one hits it with a sledge hammer.

 

I will say its not all panels that will do this but most of them do, and as said you should also install additional internal sounders, which in turn means an additional power supply and battery to cope with demand,  its just not worth the money, effort and hassle

WHY you ask?

 

My reason for WHY is because I am out of the country for extended periods of the year.

If I have my smoke/heats in a monitored system I will then be alerted if my house is about to burn down and I can then inform someone back at home.

It is not a necessity but it is something I would like as I am building the house how I want it.  So if it costs more then so be it.

The reason for the query on here is to find the most practical and robust system and something that will actually work not to be shot down in flames.

 

Also my neighbours have keys to my house for this exact reason while I am away.

Personally I'd stick with a standard mains linked smoke/heat alarms,,,, and if you are really wanting them to be linked to your house alarm use an aux relay base to connect them into the fire zone of the alarm panel

Interesting thought, thanks.

premier panels have an option for global bell duration. not sure if this is intruder only though. and i have smoke / heat detectors all connected to the alarm for similar reasons, im not there most of the time so if any do activate i know about it straight away and i can see which detectors have triggered. and with access to cameras, i can easily visually check if there is a problem or not

Is it the Aico one you have back to your alarm system then Andy?  Low voltage ones I presume?

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Andy™

no, Aico are mains interlinked. look at them if you want a normal system independent from security alarm. you can also get a relay base for these which could then link to your alarm if need be

 

i have the texecom smoke / heat detectors connected to the alarm

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WHY you ask?

 

My reason for WHY is because I am out of the country for extended periods of the year.

If I have my smoke/heats in a monitored system I will then be alerted if my house is about to burn down and I can then inform someone back at home.

It is not a necessity but it is something I would like as I am building the house how I want it.  So if it costs more then so be it.

 

Fit a sprinkler system then.  Residential systems are very discreet, and there's no delay while your alarm tries to contact you while you're in transit to / from some other country.  And you'll still have a house when you land, rather than a missed email, call or text message,

 

The reason for the query on here is to find the most practical and robust system and something that will actually work not to be shot down in flames.

 

Also my neighbours have keys to my house for this exact reason while I am away.

Interesting thought, thanks.

Is it the Aico one you have back to your alarm system then Andy?  Low voltage ones I presume?

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Right done a bit more digging and think I'll be going with a Texecom system with the GSM module to allow remote monitoring and messaging.

Decided to go with the AICO detectors with an relay accessory which will wire back to the Texecom.

 

Decided to have the separate system for CCTV but haven't managed to do as much research on these yet other than looking at specs on the sites that are selling the texecom systems.

With regards to CCTV can anyone put a brand forward for recommendation?

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have a look on ebay, you can get decent cameras on there. are you wanting analogue or digital?

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have a look on ebay, you can get decent cameras on there. are you wanting analogue or digital?

No preference as long as picture quality is good.

What I be correct to presume a digital system had better quality?

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