End users often find it difficult to figure out the type of security cameras that fit their needs. If you’ve ever browsed online or through surveillance camera brochures with several brands, models, dozens of options, resolution, specifications and varying prices, you may have been tempted to either go for the cheapest solution or leave it altogether to figure out for another day. The vast options in surveillance cameras and DVRs available in the market makes it difficult to decide which system would be best suited to your home or business environment. ExcelLinx Communications brought you some of the basics of security to help you an informed decision to invest in a security camera system.

1. Cheap is costly

As an old saying goes “Quality comes with the price”, customer needs to be attentive both in terms of spending money and doing proper research before investing in security cameras solution. It’s always wiser to invest in a good quality, entry level system that allows scalability and good technical after-sales support, rather buying an unbranded cheap camera system, that could lead to buyer’s remorse. Try to buy the best value for your money. A reputable security company will be able to offer you a range of camera and DVR / NVR options by reliable manufacturers including brands such as Hikivision, Axis, Flir, Sony, Bosch, Visionline, Dahua, and Honeywell.

2. Warranties

Unbranded camera solutions may only offer 30-days to six month product guarantee at best, which you might find yourself fighting for, if the camera fails. A reputable security company like ExcelLinx Communications sell a surveillance camera system with a warranty of up to three years and offer professional installation services.

3. Clarify camera type

There are mainly three types of surveillance cameras available in the market: Analog cameras, High Definition (HD) and Internet Protocol (IP) cameras. Fortunately, camera prices have dropped significantly with the advance of technology which has brought IP cameras pricing down to match the budget of small to medium sized business.

4. What you want the camera to see

It’s important to determine what you want the camera to see. Do you want the camera to be able to see a vehicle in the parking lot or visitors on the front door? Based on the type of view required, you need to figure out the type of camera that will best fit your needs. Cameras to be chosen in this regard are Dome, Bullet, Motorized lens, Fixed lens, PTZ or Box cameras. With the advance of technology surveillance cameras now offer a wide range of capabilities at much affordable pricing.

5. Understand basics

When selecting a camera, it’s important to consider lens size, wide angle degree and memory for data storage. For every millimetre of lens size, the rule of thumb is that this is how far away in meters the camera will be able to view its subject (focal length), while the degree of a wide-angle lens will determine the field of vision and shorten the focal length as the angle gets wider. Storage capacity needed depends on the camera resolution and for how long would you like to keep the recordings.

6. Analog vs HD / IP cameras

Deciding whether to buy a more affordable entry level analogue camera or an HD or IP camera depends on the quality of the image you desire and your present and long term security needs. A basic analog camera offers a low-resolution image, while an HD or an IP camera provides a crisp high resolution image. A higher resolution offers a far more enhanced picture, which makes it possible to zoom in digitally and retain image quality to identify subjects and details such as vehicle number plates. The benefit of zooming in is that this intelligence can be shared with police investigators and security companies.

7. Cameras need proper lighting

Surveillance cameras need proper lighting to see subjects with different attributes like colors but lack of light, for example, at night will provide low light and they generally switch to black and white. It’s important to provide better lighting conditions and have good low priced light sources like an LED lamp. This is important from gathering evidences point of view in case of a theft or other disasters. There are low light cameras available in the cameras that don’t need support lighting but are far more expensive, making it cost effective to use lighting.

8. Consider all installation costs

Its always a good idea to ask questions to avoid any surprises at later stage. Having correct type of cameras is not the only part of your shopping list, you need to be aware of the type of DVRs / NVRs needed for this install. Other equipment or peripherals like cables, connectors, an uninterrupted power supply and the cost of labour and commissioning of the unit.

9. Look for best location and positioning for cameras

Selecting a right position and location of the camera is most significant step of the camera install. An expert installer can help you achieve maximum coverage area with less number of cameras installed. One should try to cover most vulnerable points and use the cameras based on the requirements at those locations like low lighting, high traffic, more detailed, etc.

10. Expert guidance

If you are planning to install Security cameras or want to upgrade your old and obsolete security system, seek the advice of a security professional who will be able to assess your property and show you recorded footage from different types of cameras, that will enable you to get the full picture on quality and pricing before you commit to a decision. Doing research online is always advisable but not every information available on web is correct and legitimate. It takes a while to check a wide range of camera technology on the market and there is advancement in technology everyday for which you need an expert advise. Would you like to know more about advanced capabilities or do you have any questions regarding how surveillance cameras can enhance your business’s security system?

ExcelLinx Communications can help you in choosing right cameras after a no-obligation site visit in and around Toronto area. Please visit us at or call us at 1-855-547-5500 or email us at

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