IP technologies are finding an increasing number of applications in all areas of security including video, access control, intercoms and power distribution.
What comes to mind immediately are CAT-5 cabling and RJ-45 connectors, essential network tools which are always used in network topology and for other non-IP applications.
CAT-5 cable is a special four pair construction of solid conductors with very specific electrical characteristics with respect to impedance, capacitance, twists, and resistance so that the performance of connected hardware may be accurately predicted. But due to the economy of scale, that is, the fact that CAT-5 is a mass-produced commodity it is consequently readily available and reasonably priced.
RJ-45 connectors and receptacles are too.
Information technology (IT) is refers to the design, implementation, support and management of computer-based information systems.
Implementation refers to converting, storing, protecting, processing, transmitting, and securely retrieving information.
Information can refer to speech video, data, and in some instances, power.
Information technology is starting to spread farther than the conventional personal computer and network technology, and more into integrations of other technologies such as those used in security.
A network is a collection of devices connected by communications channels that facilitates communications among users and allows users to share resources with other users. Networks may be classified according to a wide variety of characteristics.
The Internet Protocol (IP) is a protocol used for communicating data across a packet-switched internetwork using the Internet Protocol Suite, also referred to as TCP/IP.
IP is the primary protocol in the Internet Layer of the Internet Protocol Suite and has the task of delivering distinguished protocol datagrams (packets) from the source host to the destination host solely based on their addresses. The Internet Protocol defines addressing methods and structures for datagram encapsulation.
The first major version of addressing structure, now referred to as Internet Protocol Version 4 (IPv4) is still the dominant protocol of the Internet, although the successor, Internet Protocol Version 6 (IPv6) is being deployed actively worldwide.
But in security we may also use the terms IP and networks in a casual way to describe other products and technologies which incorporate individual characteristics of IP without literally being IP or network appliances.
Video is an excellent example. It is often referred to as CCTV (Closed Circuit TeleVision), but where IP and networks have been introduced, the circuit is anything but closed, since as is well known, the Internet is almost limitless in scale: it can include virtually any number of nodes and it can accommodate virtually any volume of data.
An IP camera is a sophisticated device which is actually a server that provides video using a computer network. It communicates exclusively with other computers and network appliances.
But analog cameras are also in use extensively, and their outputs can connect directly to analog hardware such as DVRs, or bridged over to networks.
DVRs are transitioning to hybrids, which can accommodate both analog cameras as well as IP cameras.
Analog cameras use coaxial cable and BNC connectors, unless the analog signal is converted to UTP (unshielded twisted pair) cable and hardware, in which case CAT-5 cables and RJ-45 terminations come into play.
All DVRs convert video into digital data and store it on hard drives and other computer based media. Virtually all DVRs used these days employ IP and IT technologies to enable network based camera viewing and archiving.
DVRs are giving way to video servers which are PCs equipped with capture cards and hard disk drives designed specifically for the demanding duty of running constantly and storing huge volumes of data.