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  Need to setup up a Security type system...Help? 
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BrinNutz May 08, 2006, 04:47pm EDT Report Abuse
Ok, I have just recently moved home from the military, and am staying with my parents for the time being, but for the last couple of years, every so often, my folks' place would get egged. How childish. But, in the last month, the house got egged, and then, two nights ago, someone stood in front of the house at 330am, and chucked an open beer bottle that was about full through one of the front windows, putting a big hole in it.

My goal here, is to set up a temporary security camera system, with at least 2 cameras, which will be linked to a computer that I am going to be gettin in the next couple of days.
I need to have pretty decent camera's, that are motion activated, with night vision (since it always happens at night), possibly even wireless cameras, that can be programmed to only monitor the area from say, 1930 (730pm) to about 0630 (630am), and only record when there is motion detected. The computer will be left on 24/7.

I have found some cameras, but do not know how well they work, and am looking for some suggestions. I need this system to be temporary, because we are moving out of the house in about 1-2 months to a house my Dad and I are building, where I will again set up this system, probably to monitor the deer and animals that will be visiting the pond in the back, as well as a security system.

If anyone has any experience with this sort of stuff, I am in dire need of your personal help. Please post here and/or get into contact with me so I can take care of this as soon as possible.
Thank you for your help and sorry for the long post.


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Dr. Peaceful May 08, 2006, 06:31pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
Wow, that's scary. Must be some bad neighbor hood you live in. Sorry to hear that. Hope someone help you with the security.

B34NS May 08, 2006, 07:12pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
Set up a rocking chair a large bottle that say xxx and a 12 gauge this will fix your little hoodlum problem.

B34NS May 08, 2006, 07:34pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
I used to live i los angeles in some pretty skecthy areas only a few years ago, had the same problem sorta, i was paraniod about my computer getting ripped off. at first I was p**sed like this too and wanted security cameras. The biggest thing is to use other resources like making sure your house is secure and catching them is easier, just set up a mini dv camera on a tripod where they wont see in int a window or something give them an irresistable target to vandalize (pink flamingos, etc) let them catch themselves. Only real addvice from this situation really.

Sean Costello May 08, 2006, 07:40pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
i was thinking the same thing, just buy a bunch of Bouncing Betties (google it) and place em in the front yard
also buy like a high powered BB gun
or try this thing as well:

i know its a little late :S

Story of My Life-
BrinNutz May 08, 2006, 08:28pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
Well, its actually not a bad neighborhood at all, that's the funny, thing. Well, didn't use to be. It's just our house, no one elses, and we have lived here for 20+ years. But, anywho, I want some help with this because I will eventually be doing this for my parents new house, so they can have something other than an alarm system. We have an alarm system, and we live across the road from a streetlight, so I mean, you can't get much better, and, the cops are now patrolling here much more often, probably because this is actually a cut through road for them on their way to the 7-11 they hang out at..LOL!!

Anywho, I hope someone can direct me in the right direction as to where to start this at, I honestly don't know.

The camera problem is, it can't record for that long, I don't think, I have a Digital8 Camcorder, I'll try that, and I like the idea of putting something out there to lure them in, THANKS for that idea!!!

I just like the thought of having my own camera security system as well, so that way, if anything does happen, they will most likely be able to be caught. And, this system will be on a pretty hefty UPS backup. Well, thanks everyone so far, hope others can help!

Sean Costello May 08, 2006, 08:37pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
get that web cam thing i showed above and like a cheap Dell thast like $400 and a nice big HDD (like 300GB maybe?) and keep it as just a recorder :D

may be a bit outta the price range ur looking for though

Story of My Life-
Chris McNally May 09, 2006, 12:52am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
Check your PM Wilson.


Chris McNally

Moderator - Hardware Analysis
blah blah May 09, 2006, 09:25am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
1. Get some wireless cameras and mount them out front.
2. Get a motion sensitive flood lamp
3. Get a small tv/vcr to monitor and record the action

Every night before you goto sleep pop in a 6 hour tape to record it all.
No need to over complicate it...

Ecosse May 09, 2006, 09:33am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?


Specs here > > > > >
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
BrinNutz May 09, 2006, 10:23am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
blah blah, it's not a need to complicate it, it's a matter of convenice. I don't want to sit through six hours of nothing when I watch it.

blah blah May 09, 2006, 10:33am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
lol, just press fast foward!

_MD_ May 09, 2006, 10:35am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
lol Ecosse... that's a very smart idea to use a decoy... =) I'm sure it might work... but...
But I would like to know if there are any solutions like those BrinNutz is looking for... So if anybody has an exact hardware setup they can point us to, that would be great. Thanx alot guys.

_______ Full system specs in user profile ________
Beavis Khan May 09, 2006, 10:42am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
There are a couple products that sorta kinda fit the bill from places like SmartHome and X10, but I can't find the one I'm really looking for...I remember awhile back someone posting on Slashdot (I think...) about a camera with a flash card slot and motion sensor that ran on batteries. It would snap a picture every second or two when the motion detector triggered, saving to the flash card, but other than that, it didn't do anything so the batteries lasted a long time - and obviously, it didn't have to be wired to a TV/VCR/etc like the ones I see on X10. Anyway, this may be so vague as to be useless, but figured it might point you in the right direction...

"For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple, neat, and wrong."

- H.L. Mencken
BrinNutz May 09, 2006, 10:47am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
MD, thank you!

I like all the ideas presented, and will use some with a combination of what I want to do. Ideas are good, but I have this Idea, and would like to see how well I can make this work, this is what I want to do, and am going to somehow figure out a way to do it..LOL..I hope anyways.

BrinNutz May 09, 2006, 05:07pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
Anyone have any ideas?

Sean Costello May 09, 2006, 05:08pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
i like the motion sensor flood lights, tons of people have them, or a dog perhaps?

or just the warrning signs for attack dogs, under the flood lights

Story of My Life-
Jumping moron May 09, 2006, 05:27pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
How about a dummy camera???

there are these dummy camera's on battery,
with a motion tracker, and a blinking light.

when the camera picks up movements,
a red led starts blinking, and the camera starts to move from left to right.

that prevents a lot of people from doing bad stuff.

hope this helps,

Post Count +1 :)
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BrinNutz May 09, 2006, 06:45pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
The whole point, is not just to stop this from happening, but to catch whoever is doing it. That's the point of why I don't want dummy cameras, and there are trees, floodlights are not an option. Also, as I said before, I want something temporary, not permanent, because we're only living here another month or so.

Greg M May 09, 2006, 06:57pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?

Black and white at night and it illuminates with Infrared so they can't see the 'light' that is coming from it.

By the way. You wouldn't have to sit through 6 hours of tape... just look outside and see if there is any damage! If there was, it would probably be within the first 4 hours of the tape... use the fast-forward button!

Another one:

More expensive ($400) but way better:

One designed for animals:

*trumpets blasting*
Create a PC-based dvr camera security system from your existing PC for a fraction of what others charge. Its easy and on sale. Replaces VCR and multiplexer in security system.
4 channels per card (ie, 4 camera connetions, BNC)
One audio channel (to plug in microphone)
Records all video to Hard Drive in compressed digital format (MPG4).
Can display real time video, record and playback at same time (triplex)
Plays back at 30 FPS (if 4 cameras used, that's about 7 FPS per camera)
Stores video in FIFO format. Oldest footage is recorded over when hard drive space runs out. No need to change tapes. Can download to another drive for archiving.
Supports full resolution video (768x576 PAL, 640x480 NTSC) Can limit how much of hard drive to use for video storage.
Easy to use graphical intuitive control panel.
Has timer to schedule recording period.
Has motion detection to save disk space.
Has alarm to notify of signal loss or of motion detection will email owner.
Software provided is easy to install and configure.
30 GB will store 15 days continuous recording.
Snap shot with print and save
Can search recorder video by camera, time/date, alarm events.
Pre-alarm recording captures video immediately prior to alarm event.
Can view live video remotely over internet connection, dial-up and LAN.
Remote video viewing protected by password.

FX-55, 2x 1GB GSkill, X1800XT (512MB), 2x250GB RAID-0, DFI SLI-D <-My 'project' <-Web games!
Bill Parsons May 24, 2006, 05:26pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Need to setup up a Security type system...Help?
Wilson-- I had a problem with people stealing things out of unlocked cars in my (usually very good) neighborhood, so I set up a video security system. Here's a summary of my experiences and my recommendations.

First, I tried a stand-alone DVR. It can take up to four cameras and works 24/7 unattended, over-writing the memory about every eight days at the settings I use. The good thing is it's bomb-proof and set-and-forget, the bad thing is the resolution is crap and the searching could be easier. It takes about 15 minutes to search through a night's worth of activity at 32x speed. It does NOT have motion-detection. It cost a little over $300 including the hard disc drive.

The next thing I tried is a computer-based system. Don't go cheap on this, trust me. A good one for the price is the GeoVision from (plug the words "capture card" into their search engine for the site). Get the systems that will resolve better. I find that I don't need more than four or eight frames per second, usually, but that resolution is critical. It has motion detection, which cuts down the time I need to search, but I sometimes wonder if I'm missing anything when the motion detection isn't triggered. There are several to choose from. Mine cost about $350, and can handle up to eight cameras. There are cheaper ones that can handle up to four.

I get a lot of stuff from Supercircuits, but understand that if you're not a really big government/industrial customer they won't pay as much attention to you. But they are the best of the worst, in my experience, and they have a relly big line of products. I love browsing their catalog.

There are a couple of unsung jewels in the Supercircuits line, one of which is the PC74WR camera. It's about as big as a lipstick tube, weatherproof, and has incredible low-light capability, all for $59.95. It's black-and-white only, but it has a color version that's more expensive and not quite as capable in low-light. I've tried the Sony X-view cameras, and I'm not at all impressed.

The person who advised combining a video camera with a sensor light is correct. I find that when I'm running through a night at full fast-forward speed, all I need to do is look for a sensor light coming on and then backtrack to what caused it (in the back yard it's usually raccoons and foxes).

I custom-built a decorative lamp-post for my front yard and wired two cameras into it. Man, does that catch stuff. You can't even see the cameras unless you look hard. They caught the neighbor's teenage son sneaking out after midnight, much to his chagrin, and lots of midnight-lovers sneaking down to the park next to my house, as well as people casing the neighborhood. No thefts so far, though.

There are security VCR's that will record up to 1250 hours on one VHS tape, and that will automatically rewind and start all over again with no human intervention. They start at about $130. Note that whoever said that you could just get a camera and use a regular VCR to record for six hours was right-- I used this approach in the beginning-- but you want something that is set-and-forget. Things tend to happen when you forget to set the system or don't have time. You want it to be ready 24/7, trust me on this.

DO NOT use wireless. The 2.4 gHz units will interfere with WiFi and some wireless phones with disasterous results (I had to send two of them back), and th 900 mHz units are almost as bad. Wire the cameras up. The thin stuff that Supercircuits and a lot of other places sell is OK up to 100 feet, but for good reliability you want to use the same type of cable that the cable TV installers use, 75-ohm RG59-U, and get the good copper-braided stuff. It's good up to 200-300 feet, and you can cut it to fit. You will PROBABLY (not always, fittings differ) need to cap it off with BNC connectors. Get the kind that twist in, or you can get a crimping tool for $50, if you want to make the investment.

Camera placement is going to be critical. If you get a wide-angle lens, you might not have enough resolution to positively identify the person, but at least you'll have time, body type, clothing, and direction of travel. If you try to home-in on the culprit with more of a telephoto, there is a good chance you'll not get him in view. The best ploy is to try to get a wide-angle camera as close to the place where the culprit will be when he does his dirty deed. The decorative lamp post approach is ideal for this, but it took me two days to dig the trench for the wires.

Get the PC74WR with an inexpensive time-lapse VCR. If you must go computer-based, get a GOOD capture card like the GeoVision, trust me, you'll not be happy with the cheaper cards. Note that the card requires a high-grade video driver, so check the specs carefully before you get your computer. The good thing is, you'll have a system that's nearly equivalent to what was used on the London Subway until recently.

A note on the cameras with infra-red LED's-- most of them won't work past 15 feet, no matter what the spec says. There are some newer ones on the market that advertise up to 150 feet, but their earlier brethern advertised up to 90 feet and they were useless after about 12 feet outdoors. Get sensor lights, that's the best way to go.

Let me know if you want the directions to how I wired up my lamp post. Best of luck, -BP-

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