Lighted and Low-Light Video Surveillance Systems

Finding the right security system for one’s indoor or outdoor environment can be difficult. When choosing a security surveillance system, it’s important to remember that weather exposure, humidity levels, risk of vandalism and deterrence capabilities play an essential role in choosing the right system. However, many businesses and homeowners overlook the importance of proper lighting for surveillance camera systems.

Without the proper lighting, a traditional video surveillance system is useless. In many cases, areas that are poorly lit experience higher rates of crime than areas that are properly lit. If an area has poor lighting, a video camera may not be an effective crime deterrent.

Fortunately, there are several effective ways to set up a lighting system for a surveillance camera. When setting up lighting for an indoor or outdoor surveillance camera, it’s important to make sure that the light source is not within the camera’s field of view. If a very bright light is within a camera’s field of view, the camera will automatically adjust to high light conditions. This will make everything but the light source appear dark in a video. To avoid this problem, it’s a good idea to set up a light source that is not in a camera’s field of view.

For example, try placing light sources behind or above a surveillance camera. This ensures that the camera won’t adjust to very bright conditions, which will automatically darken the rest of an image. If a surveillance camera is being mounted in an area with overhead lights, make sure that the camera is mounted in a way so that overhead lights don’t impact the camera’s field of view. If it isn’t possible to adjust a camera in this way, consider installing light fixtures that direct light downwards instead of horizontally. This can often reduce glare in a video camera surveillance system.

For some areas, it may not be practical to have a traditional full-light video surveillance system. For these environments, a low-light or night-vision surveillance camera system can be a great choice. A night vision surveillance camera uses a specialized infrared (IR) chipset to record video in low-light conditions. While these systems will not work in total darkness, they can operate very well with minimal light provided by the moon, stars or distant terrestrial lights. In addition, these systems can be equipped with infrared lights to improve video contrast at night.

Infrared lights are invisible to the human eye. However, people use infrared lights every day. Most modern remote controls come with a specialized infrared LED light to communicate with a television, stereo or video entertainment receiver. If someone pointed a night vision camera at a TV remote control in a dark room while it was being used, the resultant video would show bright flashes of light coming from the end of the remote.


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