04-09-2006, 12:00 AM
Hey, was looking at these and wondering if anybody on here has ever used them? They look like a good solution, especially the "rattler" and the "loop" devices. Service is like $420 a year though. But I guess if it helps to keep $30,000 of stuff from getting stolen..
Let me know what you guys think.
Or, if you have seen somethign similia.
04-23-2006, 11:43 PM
bump bump.. anybody got any ideas on these, or know of somebody that has used them?
04-24-2006, 12:27 AM
I've used these before to make folks think twice:
I had about 6 of them and mounted them strategically (high up, using a ladder) and in several places to give it the realism of coverage. Worst part was buying black cord (hard to find) roughly as thick as an extension cord and cutting into pieces to wire the cams into the dirt... The wire doesn't lead anywhere, but the 1/4 inch thick black snake hanging from the cam and leading into the dirt looks official. Had to drill a 1/4 inch hole into each cam (carefully), then plug one end of the wire in there and secure with shoegoop, then the other end you have to firmly plug into the dirt (firmly enough so if someone tugs, it doesn't come right out).
But you can't tell anyone they're fake, even you have to believe they're real or it will not work. You realize in time that you walk around once / month or so with a log book performing camera checks from one to the next, you test them and do stuff and pull the cover off to perform all sorts of totally useless but highly official looking stuff to them.
You can laugh, but it works.
It is a trade, price for actual functionality.
04-24-2006, 12:43 AM
As for real cams, I had a good friend check into them, here are those results:
First, you want one that is hooked to a computer. Don't get one that is hooked to tape because the tape player and the tapes are proprietary and can crap out. Also the tape records for a few hours then it either rewinds or runs over itself - No good if you're gone for the whole day. With the computer, only motion-detected activity is recorded, and you can chose what to keep and what not.
As for the computer, you'll need a dedicated pc for this, a gigahertz cpu with a gig of ram and a minimal hard-drive, a cd-rom and a basic graphic card and most any color monitor should do (translation: 400-600 dollars, depends if you Build it Yourself). You could, in a pinch, get a manual switch where you can hook two pc's to your existing monitor but you still need a dedicated pc for this, the switches run around 30 or 40 bucks with the extra cable you'll need as well. Then, you 'click' the selector button on the switch and you use the monitor for whichever pc you want to work with.
Then, you need the software. This will save you from having to pay monthly dues as the software and the computer (and in a moment the camera) are all yours and hooked into a Closed-circuit system. Translation: 700 or so dollars (maybe 300-400 I forget).
Now you need a cam, really two and maybe three, depends on the sq. footage. You need a powerful cam that rotates up to a full 360 degrees with small increments. Cheaper cams either don't rotate in a full circle or they do so in larger increments, basically cams all 'pan' from one degree to the next, the cheap ones appear choppy in motion while the more expensive ones pan so closely it literally appears as continuous motion. Not to mention it needs to do so fast, one full rotation I forget how fast it should go, matter of seconds... Then there is zoom and there exists misconceptions because a lens advertised at 10X, 120X, or even 240X zoom does NOT matter! All that matters is the Optical (mm) zoom of the lens. No, even the Digital zoom ratio hardly matters. I won't get into the details except a really nice Sony CCD Digital ULTRA Pro w/Pan,Tilt & Zoom is 600 dollars, each. One cam might cover your lot (they do detect motion up to quite a range, lock and zoom in at that point) but you may need two...
Any more than one cam (you might even need it for one, dunno) and you need a control box, 5 Camera PTZ Control Box... $50.00
You're looking at spending 3-4 grand for an independent system that you pwn. I do not know about subscription-based systems, I would only trust them if I could see the stuff in action, and I mean I would test it the way only I test things and if it even thinks about not working, no way. Yeah, I'd see about pulling up in my car with no headlights in the dark and sneaking up on that joker myself, throw a towel over it from behind and help myself to some of my own stuff, so to speak... Yes, to see if it works. That is, unless they guarantee it by paying in full for anything gets stolen :)
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