Before you rush out and buy a bunch of new equipment to upgrade your home security system, you should know about your options and the types of equipment you’ll want to consider. Home security surveillance options include cameras, monitors, and recording devices.

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You can find a wide range of cameras for a wide range of prices from around $100 to over $1000. Clearly, it depends on what you want the camera to do. Monitors come at many sizes and prices as well. You can choose a small desktop monitor for as little as $50 or a well-equipped multi-feature monitor for over $1000. For recording the images, you can purchase a standard DVR or VCR. Vendors sell packages that contain all of this equipment with necessary accessories starting at around $1000. Of course, you can add on lots of neat high-tech bells and whistles.

The camera is the single most important part of your home surveillance security system. Most experts recommend that home security surveillance systems use hidden cameras. They are small and easy to install almost anywhere. Some cameras already come in their own camouflage outfits – plants, toys, clocks. Others come in easy-to-spot but hard-to-damage housing.


No matter how you choose to hide it, you must be careful that its range is clear from obstruction and, of course, the camera quality provides a clear image. Of course, hard-wired cameras are harder to hide and harder to install. You’ll usually need to hire someone to do your installation. If you decide to add a hard-wired camera later, you can end up with a big mess and high costs. Webcams are a favorite device for home surveillance security systems. They are small and inexpensive, and they can be used for different purposes as well. However, it may be hard to install a webcam that uses a USB cord – better to look for a wireless webcam.

The camera lens will determine how large an area you can cover and what lighting conditions are needed. You can get a dome-shaped wide-angle lens to get distortion-free images and a larger field than most standard camera lenses. You can also find cameras that will pick up images in low light, but infrared cameras are required if you want to monitor in darkness. Wireless cameras are easy to find. They are an excellent choice for home surveillance security systems because they can be installed almost anywhere without the hassle of using long cables or wires to connect them. They’re easy to install and easy to use.

The great thing is that you can use as many cameras as you need (up to at least 16) to cover every vulnerable area in your home and yard. With the added capability to record images, you have the ability to help law enforcement capture and prosecute any criminal who enters your property. Your choices of monitors are many. You can use cell phones, regular televisions, your computer, or a special desktop system monitor. This offers you a way to save money when you must. Your monitor allows you to observe activity as it happens, especially helpful if you want to use your system to monitor your baby in the nursery or your pets outside. Keep in mind that, without recording equipment, the monitor must be operated 24 hours a day, seven days a week, if your home security surveillance system is effective.

A recording device is recommended for any home security surveillance system. It gives you the ability to follow up on break-ins after they’ve happened to provide evidence of the crime to law enforcement as they search for, arrest, and prosecute the perpetrator. They can even be used as evidence in court. Home security surveillance systems do not really prevent break-ins, but they help retrieve stolen items and catch the crook. And they’re a great toy for techies.

A digital video recorder (DVR) lets you record longer and offers more recording and viewing options than standard VCRs can. You can also view the recorded DVDs on the internet as well as on your monitor or television. But a standard VCR will give you an acceptable recorded image of the event if you need to give it to the police. Let your budget determine your choice of recording equipment.

As you might expect, the newer systems in the market allow for various accessories and add-ons to make the most tech-savvy homeowner squeal with joy. You can add sensors that start the recorder when they detect motion or temperature changes. Light sensors can help you know when to adjust camera settings or provide more artificial light. And smoke detection sensors add to your home protection capabilities.

If you’re serious about getting a home security surveillance system, you should do your homework. Learn as much as you can through the internet, then make a thorough list of your needs. Prepare a map or other description of the areas you want to monitor, then take your information to a qualified expert for a free security assessment. Many local surveillance and security companies have assessment sheets you can fill out to help you be sure you’ve covered all the bases and decide what system and components best meet your needs.

The number and size of areas you want to monitor, conditions like light and weatherproofing, and budget will be your major constraints. And if you decide to use a subscription monitoring service, you’ll need to select the best one to provide dependable, quick responses and outstanding service. Due to video introduction, most of the large and popular security monitoring companies will charge large fees. They may even ask you to sign a long-term contract. But there are younger companies out there who offer lower prices. Price, however, shouldn’t be the deciding factor. You’ll need to check out a new company’s performance record and recommendations before signing on with them.

Home security surveillance is a new, booming industry, and it’s a good way to ensure that you get to keep even those possessions that are stolen. It’s helpful to use for other purposes (like watching the baby), and there are a wide variety of equipment and configuration options. You can stay as simple as using a webcam and your laptop, or you can get as sophisticated as installing an integrated system with top-of-the-line electronics and lots of add-ons.


What you decide depends on why you need a home security surveillance system and what you can afford to spend to get the results you want. We recommend that you do a lot of research on equipment capabilities, do a comprehensive analysis of your home and surveillance needs, talk to people who already have a home security surveillance system, and get as much advice and support as you can from experts in the field. After you’ve done these things, you can be sure to get the perfect home security surveillance system for your unique needs.