Thursday, August 9, 2012

The Difference Between a Bullet Security Camera and Dome Security Camera

For most people they struggle when choosing the security camera types that best support their surveillance system installation.  The security camera market is flooded with numerous different security camera types and brands that have different features and benefits.  When it comes right down to it there are really two core types of security cameras that people choose to install.  Those are bullet security cameras and dome security cameras.     The core difference between bullet cameras and dome cameras are their outer housing and mounting option.

Meaning the internal camera guts of both of them are the same, but the outer shell is the main difference.  The reason for this is to support different mounting requirements that are found on different structures or buildings.  Since both a dome camera and a bullet camera have different mounting options.  Plus for some people they have a look they want to create and for some that may include bullet cameras, dome cameras, or a combination.     A dome camera is really shaped like ½ a softball, which means it requires a ceiling or eve to be mounted under.  This also means that some structures like a commercial building or residence may create some mounting challenges for a dome camera.  In this case a bullet camera may be the best security camera option.  A bullet camera offers much more flexibility to be mounted really on almost any wall or flat surface.   Once the bullet camera is mounted its rotating neck mount allows you to point the camera in almost any direction.  Most high quality dome cameras usually have a wall mount bracket option that can solve the issue of mounting a dome camera right on a wall.  In many cases using a dome camera with a wall mount is the most aesthetically pleasing solution.     Myths Between Dome and Bullet Cameras:    One of the biggest myths between a dome camera and a bullet camera is that bullet cameras can see farther.  This is actually very untrue.   The cameras ability to see farther has nothing to do with if it has a dome or bullet housing.  It has all to do with the lens type, and the number of infrared LED’s that the camera has.  The lens type is important because it allow the camera to capture wider and longer areas.  There are 2 types of lenses that come with security cameras, those are fixed and varifocal lenses.  A fixed lens is really a “what you see is what you get” type of lens.  It is fixed usually at a wide angle and once you power the camera you will have no flexibility to adjust the focal length.  A varifocal lens is the opposite and offers the ability to adjust the focal length of the lens to capture wide or longer areas.  Once the varifocal lens camera is powered you have the ability to adjust the lens to best support the area you are trying to secure.    The number of infrared LED’s on a camera is very important in determining how far a camera will actually see at night.  The infrared LED’s sense that the lighting conditions are poor in an area and turn on to help the camera create its own light.  The more IR’s the farther a camera can see.  It is important to read the specifications of any camera you are going to buy to see the distance rating of the on-board LED’s.  That distance needs to be equal or greater to the distance of the area you are trying to secure.  Evaluating Security Camera Mounting Locations   With so many security camera options it is important to carefully evaluate each camera location to understand the best mounting options.  One area may be perfect for a dome camera, where another area may only allow for a bullet camera to be used.  One area may need a long range lens where another area may need a wide angled lens.  Or one area may have very poor lighting and need long range infrared LED’s where another area may not need any infrared lighting at all.  One of the biggest mistakes people make when buying security cameras is that they buy 16 of the same cameras, and then try to force the cameras into desired locations.  This method of buying is not only costly, but it also may cause serious holes in the overall surveillance systems effectiveness.   Not all cameras are the same and some areas that you are trying to secure may have special requirements.      Dome and Bullet Cameras?    At the end of the day both dome cameras and bullet cameras are just as affective for properly securing a home or business.  They both have the same internal camera options with the main difference being the mounting capabilities of the two.  Both outdoor and dome cameras are vandal-proof and weatherproof, so you are ensured the protection you need against the elements.  So besides the mounting options it may just come down to the look you want for your home or business!

Guest Blogger Erik Johnson is a seasoned veteran of the surveillance and security industry.  He writes to assist home owners and business owners in taking the best steps to secure their homes and businesses.