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Cheap CCTV System for Your Home
Cheap CCTV System for Your Home
Date: 08-10-12
Topic: Tutorials and Guides
Author: npsingh123

Cheap CCTV System for Your Home

Cheap CCTV System for Your Home
You can get one running for almost free!! Or if you have a downloader PC then you add a Capture card + camera + cable for less than 2000 INR. If you have a TV tuner card then it normally has a composite video in port. This can keep a 24 hour watch on your car on the ground floor etc. The inspiration for this came after watching Crime Patrol on Sony Channel.

For this article, I would be linking to’s pages and images. Peter Brisette has kindly provided the permission to use text and images.

Peter can be contacted here
Peter Brissette" <peterbriss [at ]
PO Box 5810
Broomfield, CO 80020

Warning/Disclaimer: This article is created in good faith and should not be used for illegal activities. Also in many countries, getting CCTV systems installed by approved technicians entitles you for a discount in your insurance premium. In this case DIY is not recommended. All the sources are referenced and would be happy to delete your content/link if you do not want it listed here. The ebay link mentioned is just to give you a starting point about the availability in the Indian market.

On ebay and other places you can get several CCTV capture cards. Many TV tuners/CCTV card come with Windows based recording software but all may not be x64 bit compatible. You need to do some research and you have a single channel DVR for very little money.

Before you build one, let us learn some basics of the CCTV systems.

For the purpose of this article I define a CCTV camera as something that can give a video output. There are lots of possibilities to send the signal across and we have Coax/wireless/Flash memory/IP (Ethernet output).But for this article we would be discussing cheap INR 500-2500 (USD 10-50) cameras. I bought one such camera from ebay Jan 2012 for INR 500.You can have more cameras depending on the card you have and number of cards installed. So a PC having 2 4-port cards can use up to 8 cameras.
Peter’s site has lots of information on these systems.
CCTV Glossary of Terms

Some types are
Colour vs Monochrome.

Real vs Dummy cameras). A gun which cannot fire looks as dangerous as a real one? But it fails when someone who is not afraid. At 500 INR a piece for an entry level camera, you should not be wasting your time with these dummy cameras anymore.

IP camera works on Ethernet/IP protocol but cost more (Current prices INR 5000 for a wireless model). They have small computers on board and have some sort of web server to control/adjust the camera (Like routers). Because the signal is digital, the signal degradation is not there. Many installers would not be able to install/configure these.
IR (Infrared cameras)/ Active infrared/Night vision. These cameras can see Infrared images. These can be used to observe things in dark. These come with IR LEDs to light up the area. BTW your mobile’s camera can see IR signals (Try pointing your mobile camera to an active TV remote control). Such a device can be seen in the movie “Silence of the lambs”

IR CCTV - YouTube
Vandal proof/resistant cameras. They come in a dome casing.
YouTube - Broadcast Yourself vandal+ camera+test

Manual Focus/Fixed focus/Autofocus.

Non-Zoom/Zoom (Zooms up to 20x are common)

PTZ (Pan Tilt Zoom) (camera can look sideways/up and zoom in/out using joystick type controls) You need an operator to fully use this one.
PTZ CCTV demo - YouTube
Resolution formats
PAL system (UK/India/Aus/NZ), NTSC (USA) and few more systems
VGA=640x480, Q-VGA (Quarter VGA=320x240)

Wikipedia has another chart + table

For Indian conditions, we will stick to PAL system. You may be able to use an old camcorder which has a video output (99% have). These have zoom and autofocus/night-vision/Clear microphones. You may be able to extend the zoom remote cable or add wires to zoom switch . These wires are then attached to a PTZ card or simple switches. Such camcorders can be bought for less than 10 USD in ebay's used goods section. But this is for another project!

Make sure that you are using a PAL camera with PAL and NTSC camera with NTSC components.The camera I bought gives Composite Video (in PAL) output, uses 9 V DC and has an audio output. Specs are not very clear but I am attaching a scan.
Most CCTVs use Coax cable (RG-59 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.) for video signal and DC cable for power. DC cable sometimes has a white stripe on one of the wires for polarity detection; Audio cable uses another shielded cable. Sometimes you get all cables in one, this is called "RG59 Siamese CCTV" and can be bought in most places.

YouTube - Broadcast Yourself Siamese+cctv

The camera can be supplied 9-12 V DC from any suitable source. There are power supply that can supply multiple cameras. Many of these have an adjustable DC output ( 9V-12V). For India, use a supply with 220v AC/50 Hz

YouTube - Broadcast Yourself cctv+power +supply
CCTV Power Supply Options

Viewer/Recorder: You can use a suitable TV/computer with TV card. A UPS on this computer is preferred.
Or you can buy a dedicated viewer VCRs are no longer used. Most places use Digital Video Recorders or DVRs. DVR are pre-made units or can be assembled in a PC from parts.

YouTube - Broadcast Yourself cctv+security+ kit

These have features like
Recording: Images/Audio/Video/FTP uploads
Motion detection : watching certain area of a lens view for changes. If motion is detected in this area then additional activities like alarm, recording start will be enabled
Andrew Kirillov, who does research on Motion Detection Algorithms has kindly given the permission to use an image from his article Motion Detection Algorithms - CodeProject®

In this image we can see a public road with lots of movement and a small road. We need not start record anything until we see some objects moving in the area left of the main road.

You can also see the time stamps on the top of the image.
Timestamps on images. : Explained above
Email/SMS alerts:
Remote Control from Internet/IP based network (using iphone/Android mobiles if needed)
You can learn more here
Digital video recorder - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

For ebay users, has a selection of devices.
Set of 4 CCTV Cameras & 4 Ch.DVR Standalone Kit, 4 Cameras + 4Ch. DVR + Wire + Connector & Power Supplys costs 12990. Not a bad deal
So how to build your first CCTV system without spending much.

You can start with this
• Camera with 12 V input and composite video output.
• 12 V power supply (Most 12v supply would work) but should match the polarity.
• Siamese cable or 12v + video cable with power and signal connectors.
• TV with composite video in (Normally Yellow)
• Suitable connectors for

Connect the 12 V supply to the camera, connect the video output to the video cable and the cable to your TV. Select the TV input to video1 or video2. You should get a picture!

Now you can set the focus and direction of the camera. Whenever someone rings the doorbell, you can briefly change the TV input to video 1 etc and see the visitor before opening the door.
After you installed the camera, you need to make some warning stickers/labels. This of course is not necessary but helps.
You can search this in google images “camera warning sticker”. You can buy waterproof/UV/sunproof stickers on many sites.

Stickers for windows are coin sized and for doors are like CD size.

I will explain making a DVR in a later part. In case you want to do some research on your own then you can lookup pico2000 (Windows XP) or Zoneminder (linux) forums.
Bodmas, Endangered and gaurav123 like this.


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By vivek doda 18-10-12
Re: Cheap CCTV System for Your Home

hmmmmm i liked it
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By npsingh123 18-10-12
Re: Cheap CCTV System for Your Home

Last edited by vijayninel; 18-10-12 at 09:27 PM..
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By vivek doda 18-10-12
Re: Cheap CCTV System for Your Home

omg , it is really useful specially for working couple .
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By npsingh123 18-10-12
Re: Cheap CCTV System for Your Home

There are models which can be used to monitor home using the internet. They are available in Delhi/NCR.
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By vivek doda 18-10-12
Re: Cheap CCTV System for Your Home

Originally Posted by npsingh123 View Post
There are models which can be used to monitor home using the internet. They are available in Delhi/NCR.
can u provide the exact information about the models
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By npsingh123 18-10-12
Re: Cheap CCTV System for Your Home

Sorry not but I can give this AD as a guide.

Tips to Connect CCTV Camera to Internet

---------- Post added at 11:49 PM ---------- Previous post was at 11:47 PM ----------

So these things must be common now. You can always check on . I will give a link if I can find it.

---------- Post added at 11:50 PM ---------- Previous post was at 11:49 PM ----------

cctv internet | eBay
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By Endangered 04-01-13
Re: Cheap CCTV System for Your Home

Lovely piece........

Thanks.... Informative read.....
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By Dasia 03-08-13
Re: Cheap CCTV System for Your Home

I think the main t hing in the CCTV is that you can easily monitor that system with your mobile when you are out of home by using the security apps.And also they don't have high prices that you can't easily pay.
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By npsingh123 04-08-13
Re: Cheap CCTV System for Your Home

Originally Posted by Dasia View Post
.And also they don't have high prices that you can't easily pay.
Exactly. Many people have a mobile that cost upwards of 20K INR but they don't think about investing in a CCTV.

If I get some time then I will descrive how to make a cheap and cheerful one.
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By npsingh123 04-08-13
Re: Cheap CCTV System for Your Home

descrive= describe.

Hard to type in the dark.
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By Bodmas 01-05-15
Re: Cheap CCTV System for Your Home

What are best softwares to watch DVR online at Android & Windows PC?
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By npsingh123 03-05-15
Re: Cheap CCTV System for Your Home

Dlink has some wireless camera which can upload even to the internet (Cloud). It is easy to configure.

Of course if you pay more, you get more. There is nothing called the best.
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By Bodmas 03-05-15
Re: Cheap CCTV System for Your Home

Agree with you @npsingh123
but unfortunately i am stuck with chinese made VIEWEVER Brand which i bought from Ebay. Here are the links:
Link 1
Link 2
So, after 18 months of their official support, VIEWEVER`s DDNS service stopped working and left me abandoned without any assistance. They have telephone customer care but only until your product is under their warranty. Anyway since then i am trying to figuring the whole thing myself with the help of GOOGLE GOD
I have managed to get info for the following things:
Now, i need suggestions to improve the following:
  • Unable to view DVR online on Laptop or PC through IP or directed host, any particular software can help then please suggest.
  • Using BSNL Broadband with DVR but fed up of its instability, now the only option i have is TATA PHOTON+ at my area.
  • There is a USB slot in my DVR for dongles, does TATA PHOTON will work? Do i need to buy static IP from them?
In future i will upgrade my setup to HIKVISION with IP Cameras. Any opinions are welcomed.
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By npsingh123 03-05-15
Re: Cheap CCTV System for Your Home

BTW the Dlink Camera ([COLOR=#111111 ! important][COLOR=black ! important]D[/COLOR]-[COLOR=black ! important]Link[/COLOR] DCS-930L)[/COLOR] is an IP camera. It also stores your images on SD card for like 8-24 hours (Based on resolution). It has LAN port and uses 12 V. You can watch the images on LAN or on internet.

---------- Post added at 07:37 PM ---------- Previous post was at 07:35 PM ----------

It costs like 2500 INR on ebay.
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