Spurred by robust market prospects, China makers of infrared speed dome cameras are enhancing performance and design to match buyersâ requirements. Manufacturers are improving night-vision capability, using new light sources and optimizing illuminators. Heat sink design and optimal structures are likewise increasingly emphasized.
While companies continue to adopt traditional form factors, styles for the dome covers or housings are altered to accommodate upgrades. In most releases, makers are arranging the IR LEDs around the lens and removing the dome cover to prevent light interference, although LED configuration and arrangement depend on buyersâ preferences. Many designs combine IR LED sets with different power and emitting angles for better lighting effects in varying distances. The LEDs are controlled by an operator or preset programs. Some manufacturers, including Shenzhen Bestech Electronics Co. Ltd, have boosted their models such that the IR LED sets and emitting power can be controlled automatically and in realtime based on the surrounding brightness and zoom ratio.
With IR laser technology approaching maturity, more China makers are adopting it for long-distance surveillance. Products based on this are equipped with 2 to 4W diodes and optical lens, and support up to 300m illumination. Several releases also come with IR LED sets. High-end models employ lenses that can zoom synchronously.
Suppliers such as Jec Electronics Technology (Tianjin) Co. Ltd use two IR LED arrays on the upper and lower portions of the camera. Besides being less costly, the compact dimensions of this input save space within the dome and enable enterprises to include wipers or fi ns for heat dispersion. The product design separates the main system from the camera module and IR lights, increasing water resistance and reliability.
For a nonreflective and no-blind spot structure, Tianjin Zoomtech Electronic Co. Ltd integrates the IR LED sets into the upper dome. The former and camera each has an individual cover to eliminate IR light reflection. The IR LED sets can rotate synchronously with the camera on pan, with high-end models able to do so on either pan or tilt mode. Additional four wide-angle LEDs are installed on the edge of the upper dome to ensure that there are no blind spots within vertical directions.
The IR speed dome camera from Changzhou Minking Electronic Co. Ltd adopts an entirely different design. In this approach, the IR illuminator and camera are laid parallel to each other on the lower dome for maximum illumination effects.
To improve thermal dissipation, companies are pursuing heat sink structure optimization. New designs have large-area fins on the housing surface or integrate fans to speed up the cooling process. Other variants adopt the compartment style, which arranges the IR illuminator and camera modules into different partitions to reduce the impact of elevated temperature. These units can support 24/7 operations even under 60 C.
Product development among China companies also follows trends for IP, high definition and intelligent video analysis. Models based on the first have been on offer from many suppliers.
With an annual growth rate estimated at 25 percent this year, makers see the local industry expanding. Up to 5 percent upturn is forecast for 2012. Already, one-fourth of Chinaâs 200 suppliers of speed dome cameras are pursuing IR types. About half of their total output targets overseas buyers, with North America and the EU as the main markets. New destinations include Eastern Europe and South America.
IR speed dome cameras from China are classified into mainstream, midrange and high-end models. The first has zoom optical lens, up to 128 preset positions, and 360- and 90-degree pan and tilt. Releases in this category use an EIA-485 communication port and support multiple protocols, group cruises and patterns, and OSD languages. They also adopt private masking. Most mainstream units are equipped with several IR light sets and work within 100m. Suppliers also provide long-range variants that use elevated-power illuminator modules and IR laser or lens to extend the working range beyond 200 or even 300m. High-speed dome models enable varying rotation degrees, with the maximum exceeding 120deg/s. Midrange and constant-speed types feature up to 20deg/s.
The imaging quality, resolution and zoom range depend on the block camera module used. Enterprises offer several options to cater to buyersâ demands. Most components are from Sony, Hitachi, Sharp, Samsung, LG and CNB, and support resolutions of 480 to 540 TVL and optical zoom ranges of 20 to 37x. Some manufacturers provide IR speed dome cameras without block camera modules and let buyers install these themselves.
Prices of IR speed dome cameras are slightly higher than those of common variants with similar specifications. Quotes are largely determined by the cost of block camera modules, which take up about one-third to -half of the total outlay. Locally sourced components can be procured for about half of those from South Korea and one-third of Japan inputs.
Entry-level models with local block camera modules, midrange rotation speed, 480 TVL resolution, 22x optical zoom and 50 to 80m IR illumination distance are $150 to $300. Mainstream units with imported modules, 480 to 520 TVL resolution, 27x optical zoom, high-speed rotation and up to 150m IR range list at $300 to $800. Upscale variants with foreign-sourced modules and value-added features such as IR light sources, HD or IP and video analysis modules exceed $800.
Zoom and resolution enhancements are the R&D directions pursued by infrared speed dome camera makers in Taiwan.
For the former, 43x is currently the highest optical zoom supported. Buyers will also fi nd models delivering 12, 18, 23, 26, 35 and 36x. Digital zoom is at 1 or 12x.
For resolution, Taiwan companies offer units with 420 to 650 TVL. Variants capable of up to 720 TVL are in the pipeline.
Horizontal resolution has likewise been enhanced from D1 720x480 to SXGA 1.3MP and 720p. In coming months, makers will launch versions with UXGA 2MP and 1080p.
Cameras use IR cut filters to enable day-and-night surveillance. Such models support a viewing distance reaching 30m. Some are equipped with IR LEDs that can achieve up to 60m.
Other units are equipped with backlight compensation and wide dynamic range.
IR speed dome cameras from Taiwan support MPEG-4, H.264 and M-JPEG formats. New models likewise boast dual-video streaming capability via the last two compression formats. CIF and D1 video resolutions are offered at 30fps.
In audio streaming, full- and half-duplex and simplex are enabled.
Most units are water-resistant and are designed for both indoor and outdoor use. EIA-485 is the common controller interface.
In terms of transmission, buyers will find digital IP and analog IR speed dome cameras.
WDR, digital noise reduction, auto-focus lens and 360-degree continuous rotation are popular features.
In mounting choices, wall, pendant and corner configurations are supported.
Suppliers mostly adopt CCD sensors from Sony. High-end models utilize the EXView HAD. Inputs sized 1/3 to 1/4in are common for pickup devices.
Apart from Sony, makers source sensors from Sharp and Panasonic.
Infrared speed dome cameras from Hong Kong come in PTZ and pan-tilt versions. As with most other surveillance camera types, companies offer IR day/night function as an option. New products often coincide with the release of IC solutions. For instance, high-resolution variants were rolled out after the Sony Effio-E DSP and similar components entered the supply chain.
Makers carry units in various casing designs and coatings, which are typically shared with other types. Manufacturers can customize housing features to application requirements, whether for industrial, commercial, home and outdoor use. For instance, some indoor models come with small plastic domes, while outdoor variants are encased in weather-resistant, aluminum cabinets with fans and surge and lightning protection.
Entry-level versions include mini IR speed dome cameras with about 16 preset positions, 50deg/s pan speed, 0 to 360-degree continuous pan and 0 to 90-degree tilt. Cost-effective, compact units are mainly positioned for the indoor market, yet businesses strive to incorporate as many features found in full-size models as possible.
Higher-priced PTZ releases support up to 256 presets, OSD menus, privacy masking zones, and patrol, pattern and other scanning modes.
Hong Kong has fewer than 10 makers of IR speed dome cameras. Some companies have more than 20 years of experience in the surveillance industry, while others are relatively recent entrants. The factories and R&D teams are mostly based in mainland Chinaâs Guangdong province, although several R&D, QC and repair personnel are stationed in the territory.
Effortsplus Development Co. has announced vandal-resistant 4.5 and 5.5in speed dome cameras in both PT and PTZ versions.
Established in 1988, Jesmay Electronics Co. Ltd develops and manufactures a range of surveillance cameras, including IR speed dome and day/night, and IP models. Its 1651 and 1652 speed dome camera series have four patrol scan and three pattern scan settings, and IR function for nighttime operation.
Jec Electronics Technology (Tianjin) Co. Ltd
Jesmay Electronics Co. Ltd
Model: 1652 Series
Shenzhen Bestech Electronics Co. Ltd
Tianjin Zoomtech Electronic Co. Ltd
Tianjin Zoomtech Electronic Co. Ltd
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