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Security Cameras and House Burglaries - any benefit?

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  • Security Cameras and House Burglaries - any benefit?

    My wife has asked me to look into getting a nanny-cam, so I've been considering getting a simple camera/DVR system for our house. I've noticed that advertisements for them at retailers seem to be more common (or maybe its just because I've started to look for them).

    Out of curiosity, do you find that these systems help at all in catching people that break in to houses when no one is home? Or do they basically just tell you 'two guys with a crowbar smashed a window and took a bunch of stuff, we already knew that'? I don't expect any deterrent value, as my plan is to hide the cameras as best I can.

    Every once in awhile I see on the news some camera footage of a house burglary from someone that has a similar setup, but rarely do they follow up with any results.

    Thanks guys.

  • #2
    Depends on the quality of the cameras. It's not going to hurt, unless they take the DVR.
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    • #3
      If you get one make sure it's a high quality camera...otherwise it's just shapes and shadows and there's not much we can do with it

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      • #4
        ^^Yeah what he said. I hate it when people show me a recording that looks only slightly better than the footage of the moon landing and expect me to actually be able to do something with it.

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        • #5
          I'm no home security guru, but I think the old adage, "You get what you pay for" applies here. Go back to my colleague's replies and make a decision based on what they've said. I've been retired for over five years. These guys/gals are doing this every day.

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          • #6
            What others have said. Get one with a high pixel count, so if a still needs to be captured and blown up, it doesn't depixelate (I think that's the term). Mount one with an overall view of the area and one for a close up, such as one aimed at the whole backyard and one closer aimed at the rear door, garage door, etc. Recording in "night mode" or an infared is ok for you to see real time if someone is in your yard, but doesn't help us as it looks like a "negative" of a pic. You can't imagine how many small stores have a camera aimed right at the cash register (for employee theft purposes) which get us a nice look at a gloved hand. Make sure that DVR that records it can make a CD/DVD of the incident and that it's not in some "off the wall" format. Again, we get recordings of stuff from crime scenes that even our tech guys can't read because the company that makes the DVR is out of bussiness and has some crazy format. Make sure it can be played in Windows Media Player or RealPlayer. Know how to record it to CD/DVD for us, so we don't have to wait days "for the guy that knows how to do that " to come over and figure it out.
            Last edited by ChiTownDet; 12-17-2011, 10:07 AM.

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            • #7
              Do you have an alarm? I'd rather get them out of the house after a quick grab due to the alarm then let them pick through my stuff for an hour but have really good video of them stealing everything I have.
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              • #8
                I'm not saying this the place to buy from, but it does show what happens when you spend good money on a camera ($180 in this case)

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                • #9
                  You can't really hide them because at night, the infrared light source for each camera comes on and your cameras will all glow a mild red in the darkness.

                  My neighbors have seen the cameras on my house and a couple of the local beat cops spotted them when checking out a neighbor. Now, a couple times a year the local PD or one of my neighbors will ring the bell wanting to look at the DVR to see if it caught a theft or an auto burg. So far its recorded two auto burglars, a theft of construction equipment and a hit and run driver.
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                  • #10
                    Get a dog. I go to burglaries at houses with alarm systems and "security cameras" all the time. Haven't been to one where the victim had a dog in the house. Of course if they are determined they will just shoot the dog. Most amateur burglars will just find another victim though.
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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by CruiserClass View Post
                      Do you have an alarm? I'd rather get them out of the house after a quick grab due to the alarm then let them pick through my stuff for an hour but have really good video of them stealing everything I have.
                      Sorry it took me so long to respond. Yes, we already have an alarm, the security camera would be in addition.

                      As I'm sure you guys know, the typical house burglary around here starts with knocking on the door to see if anyone is home. If not, they go around to the back of the house and either smash a window or try to jiggle the sliding glass door off the track. I figured if I could set the system up to alert me for motion at the front or rear door, I could call the police as soon as I saw them trying to get in the back door.

                      Ultimately, the primary reason for buying the cameras is to keep an eye on the nanny and the toddler, but if I can use them at the same time to keep the residence secure, all the better.

                      Originally posted by Catfish56 View Post
                      Get a dog. I go to burglaries at houses with alarm systems and "security cameras" all the time. Haven't been to one where the victim had a dog in the house. Of course if they are determined they will just shoot the dog. Most amateur burglars will just find another victim though.
                      We have a 3 year old Hound-mix that is my permanent companion. I'd trust the dog any day over an alarm or a camera. Thanks for the tip!

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by L-1 View Post
                        You can't really hide them because at night, the infrared light source for each camera comes on and your cameras will all glow a mild red in the darkness.

                        My neighbors have seen the cameras on my house and a couple of the local beat cops spotted them when checking out a neighbor. Now, a couple times a year the local PD or one of my neighbors will ring the bell wanting to look at the DVR to see if it caught a theft or an auto burg. So far its recorded two auto burglars, a theft of construction equipment and a hit and run driver.
                        Awesome, glad to hear they're working out. Since our street has decent lighting, maybe I'll try experimenting with non-IR cameras and see how that works out. Thanks for the tip!

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by ChiTownDet View Post
                          What others have said. Get one with a high pixel count, so if a still needs to be captured and blown up, it doesn't depixelate (I think that's the term). Mount one with an overall view of the area and one for a close up, such as one aimed at the whole backyard and one closer aimed at the rear door, garage door, etc. Recording in "night mode" or an infared is ok for you to see real time if someone is in your yard, but doesn't help us as it looks like a "negative" of a pic. You can't imagine how many small stores have a camera aimed right at the cash register (for employee theft purposes) which get us a nice look at a gloved hand. Make sure that DVR that records it can make a CD/DVD of the incident and that it's not in some "off the wall" format. Again, we get recordings of stuff from crime scenes that even our tech guys can't read because the company that makes the DVR is out of bussiness and has some crazy format. Make sure it can be played in Windows Media Player or RealPlayer. Know how to record it to CD/DVD for us, so we don't have to wait days "for the guy that knows how to do that " to come over and figure it out.
                          Awesome, thanks for the detailed reply. We need two cameras for the nanny area and baby's room, which will leave me 2 - 6 cameras for other areas (depending on the system I purchase). Biggest areas I wanted to cover were front door and backyard.

                          I'll also now make sure that whatever I get can export the file format easily. Again, I appreciate the response.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by L-1 View Post
                            You can't really hide them because at night, the infrared light source for each camera comes on and your cameras will all glow a mild red in the darkness.

                            My neighbors have seen the cameras on my house and a couple of the local beat cops spotted them when checking out a neighbor. Now, a couple times a year the local PD or one of my neighbors will ring the bell wanting to look at the DVR to see if it caught a theft or an auto burg. So far its recorded two auto burglars, a theft of construction equipment and a hit and run driver.
                            Do you live in the ghetto???
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                            • #15
                              One thing to consider is the security of the video feed. I installed a backup camera on my pickup truck, and I have noticed that driving through some neighborhoods, I pick up their nanny-cams on my backup camera reciever in the pickup truck. You dont want the video feed to be used against you.

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