DVR Project – Early Implementation

My old DVR system was a normal PC Tower with a 15″ crt monitor and occupied WAY too much space, it also utilized RCA connectors instead of the more typical BNC connectors. The end result? Every time I had to do any work on the surveillance system I would end up making a mess of things (this is the primary reason I wanted a compact desktop PC for the second version) popping cables off their connectors, mixing wires up. There was A LOT OF CLUTTER.

A few weeks ago I experienced a problem with one of the cameras, intermitant signal loss. An irritating problem to diagnose, and one that caused the usual chaos when I started tampering with things. I got angry and despite the fact that the RAM had not yet arrived for the new DVR I decided it was time to pull the old one out.

A few hours of manhandling hardware in and out, some mucking around with the configuration, more grumbling and more mucking around and finally the entire system comes back online.

The computer specs represent a significant increase in power and storage;

Old System: 1.7Ghz Processor, 256Mg Ram, 40Gig HD
New System: Dual 2.8Ghz processors, 2.5Gig Ram, 500Gig HD

By way of storage the old system recorded 6 video feeds (5 camera feeds at 320×240 @ approx 2.5fps recording only motion and 1 feed from the multiplexer at 320×240 and 5fps recorded 24/7) and would keep the last 4 days of activity before automatically overwriting the oldest activity.

New system records 7 feeds (6 camera feeds at 640×480 @5fps recording motion, motion recorded at 20fps when detected and 1 feed from the multiplexer at 1280×1024 @ 5fps recorded 24/7), settings are still being fine tuned but at present 10 days of activity are kept before oldest events are overwritten.

Of course the switch to 640×480 has introduced some interlacing issues as these are analog cameras, and I may finally have to begin experimenting with IP cameras to get around this.

In the meantime I couldn’t be happier with the system. I still need to clean up the wiring quite a bit, but for now it’s adequate (if ugly).


  1. Danger says:

    You sound like one of our IT guys. Want to come join the team?

  2. Marc says:

    can we get back to home renos please!

  3. Matti says:

    Hmmm … I’ll have to send my ‘ninja’ over there to check out your system enhancements … LOL!!

  4. Pieter says:

    Using information you’ve provided on the internet,
    I’ve concluded that your system is vulnerable to attack from above.
    Using a hand glider, towed to a height one thousand feet by an Aries K,
    one could easy drop to your roof undetected.
    From there it a simple matter of shimmying down a eve,
    picking off the paint that seals the windows, cleaning and lubrating the
    tracks and cords (So one will open), climb through, descend the “Staircase of death”,
    admire the living room and move on to disabling the security system.
    This is of course after the four year “Electronics engineering” degree that would make navigating the bird’s nest of wires safe.
    Let’s brake it down by cost.

    Hand Glider.. $2000.00
    Aries K-car.. $650.00 O.B.O
    Rope and supplies.. $200.00
    Degree.. $5000.00
    Seeing the look of surprise on your Brother’s face, right before he shots you,
    about $ 7850.00 plus tax.


  5. Mugwug says:

    Danger: Tempting, but the commute sounds awfully familiar. I’ll stick it out here in the sticks for a while yet. Thanks though!

    Marc: You! You are supposed to be visiting to see the renos in person and to join Lisa in mocking me….


    Dad: Send that Ninja back! I think I’ve fine tuned things a bit!

    Piet: The BEST comment ever!

    Thanks for making me snork my coffee!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *