When it comes to video surveillance, video recorders like an NVR or DVR are just as important as the security cameras. Not having a video recorder is like not having video surveillance at all. Without a video recorder, there will be nowhere for the recordings to be stored and processed. NVR/DVRs come with a predetermined amount of storage. When all of the storage is taken up, the system either stops recording or overwrites old recordings. This could result in you losing or missing recordings of important events. In order to prevent this from happening, we will suggest some simple tips for extending your NVR/DVR storage space.
Use Less Cameras
A lot of people assume that having more cameras is good because more angles will be captured, but keep in mind that more cameras will require more storage. When installing a video surveillance system, you should only set up cameras where it is absolutely necessary. You should also try to angle the cameras in positions that will give you the optimal viewing so you can minimize the amount of cameras but maximize the use of each one.
Reduce Image Resolution
When choosing a security camera, most people automatically choose cameras with high resolutions because they give you the most clarity and detail. However, the higher the resolution, the more storage space that is required. If you don’t need to record everything in high detail, like faces, then consider using cameras with a lower resolution to save on NVR/DVR storage space.
Only Record Motion
One of the easiest ways to maximize your NVR/DVR storage space is to configure your surveillance system to only record when motion is detected. The majority of security footage is never used or played back because the recording is not of importance. Only recording motion ensures that you only record relevant events which saves on storage space.
Schedule When to Record
If you don’t want to only depend on recording motion, you could opt to configure your system to record at certain times. For example, if you want to keep an eye on your employees, you could set your video recorder to record during business hours. This way, you will be able to see and record things that are relevant to you and save on NVR/DVR storage.
Compress Video Files
Another important tip when it comes to saving NVR/DVR storage space is to compress your video files. Doing this compresses the original video files into a format that is smaller which reduces the space needed to store it. The most common types of video compression are MJPEG, H.264, and H.265. H.264 is the standard but H.265 generates the best image quality while still keeping the file as small as possible.
Reduce Frames Per Second (FPS)
When configuring your settings on your security camera, another thing to think about is the frame rate. Frame rate is what determines how smooth your video footage looks. For example, a frame rate of 30 fps will mimic movement in real-time. However, a higher frame rate will require more NVR/DVR storage space. Unless you’re in an industry which needs to capture rapid movement, like casinos, a frame rate of 10-15 fps will do the job.
Being able to record audio through security cameras is an added bonus, but it’s not always needed. Recording audio makes the video file bigger which means that it will require more NVR/DVR storage space. If it’s not necessary to record audio, like in parking lots or outside your house, then consider turning off this function.
Apply Digital Noise Reduction
Digital noise reduction (DNR) means filtering out any image noise. Image noise is what makes footage appear grainy or splotchy. Applying DNR not only makes the image more clear, but also saves on storage space because there will be less detail on the image that needs to be stored. DNR would be a simple way to save storage space while improving the image quality.
If you are having issues with running out of storage space on your NVR/DVR, these tips are simple yet effective. You can use our handy storage calculator to determine how much storage space you will have by adjusting the different factors that we mentioned in this post.