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#218959 - 03/13/11 03:21 PM Wireless HD Video Surveillance
ki4buc Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/10/03
Posts: 710
Loc: Augusta, GA
I just moved to a new city, and did a Google search for my address and have found that my apartment was broken into on Christmas Eve last year. Now looking around the apartment, I could see where the door had been kicked in.

Has anyone had experience with wireless HD video systems and can recommend a starting point? I looked online and nothing stands out.

I figure I'd have a dedicated computer that can be "hidden" and have it communicate via wireless to the Internet.

Looking for something like this, but PC based and capable of multiple cameras: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BDDNmK9uhsI

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#219097 - 03/14/11 03:48 PM Re: Wireless HD Video Surveillance [Re: ki4buc]
MartinFocazio Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 01/21/03
Posts: 2148
Loc: Bucks County PA
I'd suggest you can save money with better locks. Prevention, not reporting.

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#219109 - 03/14/11 04:48 PM Re: Wireless HD Video Surveillance [Re: MartinFocazio]
chaosmagnet Offline
Sheriff
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/03/09
Posts: 3262
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: MartinFocazio
I'd suggest you can save money with better locks. Prevention, not reporting.


Locks are pretty easy to defeat with force on most doors, and can be bypassed by going through a window. After decent locks I'd be looking at inexpensive hardening (lights on outside, lights on timers inside, thorny/spiky plants underneath windows, eliminating cover where appropriate), then an alarm, and after that more expensive hardening (reinforced doors, security film on windows, high-end locks).

I have a large dog with a terrifying bark. The only time I don't view him as being better than an alarm system is when we're on vacation and he's not home to protect my property.

When we're not home, it's been reported, he gives the mailman a half-hearted bark or two. When I'm home he barks rather more. When my wife is home and I am not, he goes to full-on Eat The Mailman Mode. This is a good thing.

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#219115 - 03/14/11 05:26 PM Re: Wireless HD Video Surveillance [Re: ki4buc]
haertig Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/13/05
Posts: 2117
Loc: Colorado
Since it's an apartment, there's only so much you can do to reinforce things. It's not your property. Big dogs do very well, but I can't recommend getting a dog as a security device if you don't have any other desire to own a dog.

Buy good replacement cost insurance for you posessions. After appropriate training and practice, arm yourself to protect from physical harm. There are things you'll need to be intimately aware of being armed in an apartment situation. Safe lanes of fire, what's behind every wall that may be in your line of fire, etc. Don't ignore that part of it.

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#219133 - 03/14/11 07:51 PM Re: Wireless HD Video Surveillance [Re: haertig]
chaosmagnet Offline
Sheriff
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/03/09
Posts: 3262
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: haertig
Big dogs do very well, but I can't recommend getting a dog as a security device if you don't have any other desire to own a dog.


I should have said that. Thank you.

Quote:
Buy good replacement cost insurance for you posessions. After appropriate training and practice, arm yourself to protect from physical harm. There are things you'll need to be intimately aware of being armed in an apartment situation. Safe lanes of fire, what's behind every wall that may be in your line of fire, etc. Don't ignore that part of it.


Training and practice should be an ongoing commitment.

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#219146 - 03/14/11 10:30 PM Re: Wireless HD Video Surveillance [Re: ki4buc]
GarlyDog Offline
τΏτ
Old Hand

Registered: 04/05/07
Posts: 776
Loc: The People's Republic of IL
I install camera systems from time to time. I don't ever install wireless cameras because they always seem to need a reboot now and then to keep them working. If you need your cameras to work, go with wired.
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#219482 - 03/17/11 02:02 AM Re: Wireless HD Video Surveillance [Re: chaosmagnet]
ki4buc Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/10/03
Posts: 710
Loc: Augusta, GA
Originally Posted By: chaosmagnet
[quote=haertig]Big dogs do very well, but I can't recommend getting a dog as a security device if you don't have any other desire to own a dog.


I think I only have to pay a Pet deposit...and check on my renters insurance for the "forbidden breed" list. You know, the breeds that actually will stop someone. smile

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#219483 - 03/17/11 02:04 AM Re: Wireless HD Video Surveillance [Re: GarlyDog]
ki4buc Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/10/03
Posts: 710
Loc: Augusta, GA
Originally Posted By: GarlyDog
I install camera systems from time to time. I don't ever install wireless cameras because they always seem to need a reboot now and then to keep them working. If you need your cameras to work, go with wired.


The reason I wanted to go with wireless is that I'm assuming that the doors and windows won't do any good. I'm also re-thinking because I'm sure that the opportunistic criminals would be the ones going after the electronics, NOT the really "cool" stuff like identity paperwork ( i.e. birth certificates, passports, social security card, etc. ).

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#219492 - 03/17/11 05:06 AM Re: Wireless HD Video Surveillance [Re: ki4buc]
Mark_M Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 11/19/09
Posts: 295
Loc: New Jersey
Security is about creating layers of defense, with redundancy if possible.

Your windows and doors are the outermost layer. These should have good locks with reinforced hinges, locksets or window pins, and jambs, ideally with steel or at least solid wood/fiberglass cores. Burglar bars or gates are often on ground- and fire-escape-accessible windows and doors in high-crime areas, but pose significant safety risks in the event of an emergency, and may be prohibited in your building. Window security film provides good security without compromising safety and is more attractive than bars or gates.

After doors and windows comes curtains and lights. Deny a burglar the opportunity to see what valuables are available and chances are they will look elsewhere for a known pay-off. Leaving a radio on and lights on timers can be useful for inexperienced operators, but a pro burglar will usually stake out a neighborhood to watch for you to head off to work, rather than risking chance encounters with residents.

The next layer of defense would be an alarm system, and there are inexpensive wireless units ideal for temporary installation in apartments. Placing alarm stickers on your windows or doors, particularly for a high-end alarm system you might not really have, can be nearly as good a deterrent as an alarm itself.

The innermost layer is to protect valuables within your home. This includes using security cable locks on valuable appliances such as computers, tv's, etc., and a safe for important papers, cash, even laptop computers.

Conversely, if you are at risk for burglary a firearm is a liability. A burglar is not looking to enter your home while you are there. Unless you carry your firearm (with appropriate permits) make certain it is locked securely in a safe whenever you aren't present. The only thing worse than getting burglarized is putting a firearm in the hands of a criminal. The only thing worse than that is having that criminal use firearm against you if you catch him in the act.

Wireless cameras are only useful for documenting the theft, and even then, unless you go with a costly commercial system, rarely provide enough quality to positively identify the perpetrator. The only one I have personal experience with is the WiLife system from Logitech, now replaced with the Logitech Alert product line. This system requires a PC to collect the video and then uploads it automatically to Logitech servers, where you can view it remotely (from a PC or smartphone) or download it to provide evidence to the police if your PC is among the stolen property. I consider the PC to be a weak link, as they are prone to crashing or rebooting and hanging periodically. Using a dedicated PC for the camera system would be more reliable, but at that point the cost of a commercial system is within reach.
_________________________
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#219787 - 03/19/11 04:21 PM Re: Wireless HD Video Surveillance [Re: Mark_M]
ki4buc Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/10/03
Posts: 710
Loc: Augusta, GA
Thanks Mark_M. I can only do so much being in an apartment, but the obvious stuff of reducing your vulnerability is best. With gun control laws, it appears it is more trouble than it is worth. The area I'm in, with a State Line running between two cities really complicates things. Not sure how having a weapon is really a "self defense" option if you cannot carry it 95% of the time.

I'm under the assumption I've done everything I can reasonably do, and the point of the surveillance system was to provide good evidence after the fact. HD seemed to be the best way to go. My assumption is that the would-be thieves are amateurs or semi-pros.

The point of the wireless was so that both the wirless router and computer could be hidden in the apartment (or in the walls) and you'd only be able to find the cameras. The outside internet connections are in steel cabinets, so someone would have to take out lines on the pole, or underground, which if you're that dedicated, nothing I do will stop you. I wanted something that would drop the video to the computer, and then upload.

Because of the current state of laws, I did not plan on putting any cameras pointing to the INSIDE of the apartment.

I'll check out the Logitech system and see if it meets my needs.

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