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Editor Introduction


Analog video cameras are still used in a variety of applications, primarily because yesterday’s robust and flexible technology is still functioning today, although it has been years, or even decades, since the initial installation. In many cases, this past generation of security cameras is still reliable and effective. 

Embracing an installed base of analog cameras is often the most cost-effective approach when updating or expanding a surveillance system. But what about the future? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: 

Is analog dead? Or how is it viable in today’s security systems? 

Analogue is not entirely dead in today’s security systems. For established deployments, there can be a fair number of analog cameras in use, and until they stop working, there is no issue continuing to rely on them, especially due to the initial lower cost or having an existing infrastructure in place. However, as technology advances rapidly, there’s certainly a shift toward IP cameras on new projects and some replacements. Digital systems offer higher image quality, remote access, advanced analytics, and greater flexibility to scale and adapt to changing security needs. Moreover, the cost of digital security systems has continued to decrease while the capabilities have increased, making them a more cost-effective option in the long term. In summary, while analog may still be a viable option for some businesses, digital security systems are quickly becoming the industry standard due to their superior performance and lower total cost of ownership.

Editor Summary

The surveillance industry has clearly transitioned from analog to the new technology of video cameras that connect using Internet protocol (IP). The persistence of analog in the market primarily boils down to the base of installed analog cameras that are still functioning and can be incorporated into more up-to-date systems using technologies such as video encoders. Even the costs of IP cameras have come down to a point that almost guarantees they will be the first choice when designing new systems. 

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