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Upgrading a CCTV Analog System to CVI


How to upgrade a CCTV Analog security camera system to HD without rewiring everything!


Old CCTV Analog Security Camera

There are millions of old analog CCTV security cameras and systems still in use today. You can find them in homes and businesses everywhere. The problem is that they still have the same old issue, their clarity is horrible. As the cameras fail, owners are looking for ways to cost effectively upgrade to HD digital.


You may have heard "You need to go IP based or get a Cat6 system,” which means rewiring the entire system. None of that is true or guarantees you get a top performing system. In fact using the term “IP” as a way to gauge quality is incorrect. IP actually stands for “Internet Protocol”. It has nothing to do with quality or performance. The same is true with Cat5 or Cat6. That is just a reference to a cable. It has nothing to do with clarity or performance. Fact: The systems we offer are far superior to those found on the market.


So how do you upgrade your system to top performing HD and still use the existing cables? Simple, you use a CVI system. CVI is a coax based system just like your old analog CCTV system. Only you can transmit HD clarity over the existing coax cable! In fact, you can transmit the video signal much farther than a Cat5 or Cat6 cable can. How does 1500 feet sound? Well you can. CVI can send HD video 1500 feet on a Rg59 coax cable and 2000 feet using a Rg6 coax cable.


CVI Logo

CVI Stands for (Composite Video Interface)

CVI uses the exact same BNC fittings as the old analog systems so you don’t have to change your cables or fittings to upgrade an old CCTV system. Just replace the cameras and the video recorder.


What to watch out for: When you upgrade to CVI, it is best to replace the power supply with the cameras. Power supplies age poorly. Total power output can decline over time and noise can be induced into the power feed as the electronics age. Result, your new cameras might work, but not at their best level. The night vision may work, but not at the maximum distance. You may also see digital lines in the video or various strange intermittent pixilation. Always upgrade the power supply with the cameras.


Verify the Power: Most (98%) of analog cameras operate on 12v DC power. Only PTZ cameras use 24v AC power. This is because they have three mechanical motors built-in and they need the power. However, you should always check to make sure your cameras are 12v DC and the power supply is 12v DC. We have seen entire systems fry with one quick push of a plug into the wall outlet. The cameras were 12v DC and the power supply was 24v AC. Always verify and match the power requirements of the cameras to the power supply.


Upgrading your CCTV system to HD CVI.

  • Verify your cable is Rg6 or Rg59. Do not use a substitute such as aluminum shielded cable. It will not work. By definition Rg59 and Gg6 cable is copper shielded. It should have a 95% copper shield and a solid copper core.

  • When replacing a camera, also replace the power supply.

  • Inspect your fittings. If you are up-grading an older system make sure the fittings are clean and there is no dirt or moisture damage in the fitting.

Other than that it’s just a matter of selecting your new CVI cameras and the video recorder. Which by the way, we would be very glad to help with.


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