Let's Do The Math
The best thing about using megapixel cameras is that with the better images the customer can also get a terrific ROI. The following are the key areas where cost savings may be achieved for users of IP/megapixel cameras.
1. Fewer cameras, housings, cables, electrical wiring, installation costs: Because megapixel cameras can cover a wider field of view, it is typical to use 50 percent fewer cameras to cover the same area. A large telecommunications company had previously designed their retail system for 30 analog cameras and reduced the number to an average of 17 megapixel cameras. This reduction in cameras reduced their overall system cost and reduced their installation costs even more significantly. And they received much better image quality at the same time. Remember, Standard Definition IP camera and digitized analog cameras produce about 400,000 pixels versus 1,300,000 to 10,000,000 pixels for megapixel cameras.
2. High definition, megapixel cameras provide strong forensic video: The recorded images from megapixel cameras can be quickly viewed analyzed and utilized by the user or can be sent to authorities for investigation and prosecution. This saves time in investigations and more effectively helps to solve the crime. Fairly frequently, the images obtained from megapixel cameras lead to prosecutions, convictions, or even prove innocence. The robust, extremely detailed images are what sets a megapixel apart from its VGA counterparts.
3. Better camera resolution reduces the need guards and systems operation people: Megapixel cameras can sometimes replace the need for guarding services in many facilities. In a California school system, megapixel cameras replaced guarding services that cost $480,000 per year. That same school also estimated that vandalism was reduced by $200,000-$300,000 per year. The entire video system (cameras, recorders, cabling and installation) was about $400,000, so the payback was less than one year.
4. Digital PTZ: The emerging use of "digital" Pan-Tilt-Zoom (PTZ) allows users far better coverage of their facilities. Whether a parking lot or casino floor, a PTZ camera can only be watching one of 10 fields that they survey at a time.That leaves, nine fields of view open without coverage. Many times those open fields are then covered by additional cameras, which of course, increase costs. One study shows that an operator is likely to miss important information after only 20 minutes in front of a monitor. Megapixel standard and panoramic (multi-imager) cameras capture the entire scene, all the time.
There has been a great deal of progress in multi-megapixel video security systems in the past year. The rapid adoption of the H.264 video compression standard by security systems platform providers has significantly reduced network bandwidth and storage requirements that were an earlier concern. There has also been a very strong adoption of megapixel IP systems in the Commercial/Industrial, Retail, Medical, Education and Government markets.