Should I Buy Standalone Cameras or a Complete Home Security Camera System?
Once you have decided that you want the peace of mind that home security cameras can provide, a quick search online can often create more questions than answers. Should you use wired or wireless security cameras (see our article on The Advantages and Disadvantages of using Wireless Security Cameras when Installing a Home Security System)? Are you going to purchase a comprehensive home security camera system, which includes components other than cameras or are you like many others who prefer to piece together DIY home security systems from individual components?
When you're first looking for additional security for your home, it is generally after you have found yourself suddenly feeling very insecure and these questions only serve to scare you further while bringing you no closer to the answers you're looking for. You might find your solution through this interesting article about home security cameras. Although here we will look at the high-level differences between individual home security cameras and home security systems.
Standalone home security cameras
Standalone home security cameras are typically easy to install and are priced lower than complete home security camera systems. The individual unit must be mounted, supplied with power and then connected to either a television or home computer for monitoring. Generally, standalone home security cameras will not include recording software which will be required if you would like to capture a certain activity for future playback.
Wireless security cameras typically connect to a computer through your wireless network and offer many features not found in the wired cameras, including the ability to send updates to your e-mail or mobile device via the Internet. These come with the required software and will be costlier than the older wired cameras.
Home Security Camera Systems
Home security camera systems on the other hand are complete and comprehensive packages, coming with multiple cameras (usually wireless), and in most respects are like a personal computer except the system is for the specific purpose of protecting your home. They will usually come with a warranty, can handle a variety of cameras both in style and number ranging anywhere from two to sixteen units. The software will have already been installed on the home security system, and many packages come with professional installation.
These home security systems are more expensive than the individual home security cameras, but it may be money well spent if you want to ensure compatibility between individual security system components, simplify the initial installation and configuration process, and have one neck to choke if you run into issues that require support from the manufacturer or supplier.
DIY home security systems
The final option of DIY home security systems is a middle ground between the standalone home security cameras and the complete home security system. The homeowner can purchase the individual home security system components separately which provides flexibility in regard to the number and type of home security cameras, software functionality, and the features provided by other system components such as a recorder. Building the system, yourself can save money and can make additional upgrades down the road easier, but there can be a steep learning curve.