Security Cabling, CCTV and CCTV Maintenance
What is CCTV?
CCTV is the abbreviation more commonly used for Closed Circuit Television Systems. Remote signals are taken from a camera viewed and recorded internally to a specific building or location. These are not publicly broadcast, hence the term “Closed Circuit”. CCTV Maintenance is making sure that that equipment is operating at its full potential. This is with regards to hardware and data cabling
CCTV maintenance and what is it?
With regards to optional operation, CCTV maintenance is any preventative measure on your security systems to ensure maximum operational efficiency. Coupled with this, the data cabling is a big part of this as well as the hardware. In addition poor cabling and therefore poor transmissions result in faulty images and useless information
Which Cable is used for CCTV Cameras?
Older CCTV systems would previously be wired by either coaxial cables with separate power source or with Cat5 wiring. These would then be connected to a coaxial BNC connector to receive the signals for the cameras
The camera would then possibly have a local power socket for the camera or power could be sent down a separate Cat5 wiring cable carrying the electrical feed
Modern CCTV cameras operate over structured data wiring and the power and signal are both transmitted via PoE to the CCTV camera
Modern CCTV cameras work more and more on the increased PoE+ standard so fully tested and professionally installed data wiring is recommended. A below par data cabling installation will affect the power to the camera and also the signal.
Can I use Cat6 cable for CCTV?
Cat6 in the majority of cases is suitable for CCTV for both the transmission of data images and for powering the CCTV Cameras
What is the Cat6 cable maximum distance for CCTV?
The cat6 cable maximum distance for CCTV is 90m with patch leads and 100m directly linked
What is the Best Cable for CCTV cameras?
As previously stated Cat6 cabling is suitable for CCTV data and PoE requirements. However as hardware and technology advances the power requirements for these devices increases. This is part of keeping on top of your CCTV maintenance. The balance of transmission speeds against heat exposed onto the cable can causes transmission problems.
For future proofing your structured cabling Cat6a is recommended for all PoE+ devices to allow for hardware advances
Cat6a cable is also require for future proofing to 10 gigabit transmission speeds as Cat6 has a limitation of 55m
What is the best cable for CCTV long Distance?
All copper data cables using in data wiring networks are standardised. Subsequently they are ratified to an overall link length of 90m with patch leads and a 100m direct link.
Therefore any CCTV camera in excess of 100m from the CCTV switch will need to consider fibre optic cabling to the Camera. However fibre optic cabling cannot carry power to the camera so a local power source will need to be present or installed for the CCTV Camera
Reasons to Assess your Security Cabling as part of your CCTV maintenance
Whether in our homes or commercial premises, security systems are vital to protect our property. As a result they create a sense of comfort and safety. Thus with the emergence of the Internet of Things phenomena, we are seeing an increasing array of connected devices. As a result many of these can help aid security. These all rely on professionally installed security cabling infrastructure in order to function efficiently and effectively. Furthermore as with all systems CCTV maintenance is important and the cabling is part of that process
These include things such as:
- Door entry systems
- Heat, smoke and fire detection
- Motion detection
With a correctly designed and installed structured cabling system these technology systems should be able to merge over your current network. Therefore access and control between the systems are achievable. By accessing a tablet, phone or pc on your network you should be able to monitor, change, restrict and record on your security systems
Investing in Security Infrastructure
Companies are investing to ensure that their security cabling is sufficient to hold the increasing load from these critical devices.
- Leverage latest technologies– As many of these devices are low powered, they are well placed to make use of the latest Power over Ethernet technology and won’t require a separate power supply. This also makes it easier and cheaper to place sensors around a building as power becomes less of a consideration.
- Dedicated network- Existing networks might not be equipped to manage the load of security devices in an efficient manner. Having dedicated security cabling means that if your standard network is hacked, damaged, or in any other way compromised, your security system will still function.
- Don’t rely on Wi-Fi – Wi-Fi connections have become increasingly popular as the quality has improved in recent years. While wireless connections might be useful for some elements of the security systems, it is far more reliable and secure to have hardwired security cabling.
- Insurance – You risk the potential of invalidating your insurance claims if systems that you declared on your insurance certificate are not operational. It is therefore important that you keep security cabling in good condition and functioning at optimal performance at all times.
- CCTV Maintenance – As part of maintaining the CCTV systems you have, all elemnets must be maintained. Cabling, Hardware, Storage and Mounting are all advised for periodic checks
Making the decision to install the latest cabling infrastructure today will be a long-term investment in your security systems. Building security cabling with the future in mind will ensure that you can add the latest devices to upgrade your systems without having to continually make changes to the network.
How good is your structured cabling infrastructure?
Any system is only as good as its weakest part. As the data cabling to each of the components of your security systems is the media but which the data signals are transmitted. It’s imperative that the specified and installed data cable is the correct cable and installed to the correct standards
Systems will all require a different specification of cable whether it be a cat6 or cat6a cable, a fibre optic cable for long distance transmission or a specific Belden styled cable for BMS control and reporting systems
Regardless of the cable installed, these cables need to be installed to the correct standards for transmission. Test results should be provide for each outlet installed. If these cables are not installed correctly you will see problems in your access control, have image issues in your CCTV recordings and have inaudible conversations in any video or audible door entry systems
How secure is your cabling infrastructure?
When was the last time you conducted a CCTV Maintenance audit of your security cabling?
Most companies would benefit from a review of their existing infrastructure to assess the quality of the current set up, potential improvements and opportunities to leverage the latest developments in technology.
This can consist of a visual inspection to see what current cable is installed and its limitations. The data cabling can also be tested with a cable certification tester to check the cabling is working to the expected standards and therefore the transmission is working to its maximum capabilities
People are often surprised to find vulnerabilities in their current approach, and also in how far technology has improved since their last assessment.
To ensure your assets are sufficiently protected, don’t hesitate to get in touch. We will be able to advise you on the latest security cabling trends, and help to find a solution that will meet your specific needs.
If you want to ensure your assets are sufficiently protected, don’t hesitate to get in touch. We will be able to advise you on the latest security cabling trends, and help to find a solution that will meet your specific needs.