Currently the market is dominated by two (to a certain extent) competitive monitoring solutions designed for houses, flats or companies. First of them is the AHD (Analog HD). It comes from older analogue standards but enables video recording in Full HD, that is 1080 points in vertical line. This is exactly the same resolution as in most TVs in our homes. Another solution involves IP cameras with network video recorders (NVR). These cameras are available in a wide range of resolutions starting from 2MP. Depending on your budget, you may install cameras with a resolution ranging from 1080p to 4K or even more. We will explore the issue of resolution further in this text, and for now let’s go back to the differences and similarities between AHD and IP surveillance.

The principal element being similar in both technologies is the fact that they are used for surveillance ;) and can record images digitally (even though the letter A in AHD stands for... analog).   They are also alike in terms of the option to view the image online. A key difference lies in the method of connection to the recorder, which directly translates into the method of cabling. A somewhat hidden issue is the location of video processing logics (coding, analysis and additional functions). In the AHD systems, it is all taken care of by the recorder, while in the IP solutions a large part remains with the cameras.  However, from the user’s point of view this difference is not so important.

Porównanie systemu AHD i IP – podłączenie
Comparison of AHD and IP systems – connection

1) Camera 1) Camera
2) Video output 2) NVR
3) Power input 3) Network cable (PoE)
4) Video connection (coaxial cable) 4) Network cable
5) Power port 5) PoE switch
6) Coaxial cable + Power cable 6) Router
7) Feeder 7) Internet
8) DVR   


To simplify the differences, we have presented them as a table:

  IP Surveillance AHD Surveillance
method of connection to the recorder the cameras can be tied into a LAN at any location from where they may link to the recorder the cameras must have a direct link with the recorder
cabling computer twisted pair or optical fibre cable (using media converters) dedicated coaxial cable or computer twisted pair using baluns
wireless connection of cameras yes no
power supply local feeders or central power supply via PoE local feeders or power supply via baluns
installation difficulty average low
online view of video image  yes yes