is a brief breakdown of what goes into a DVR system:
Processor / CPU :
The CPU is the foundation for all computer systems,
so at LAHITECH DVR, we make the selection of CPU one
of our top priorities. We select a CPU based not only
on performance and price, but also on reliability and
future usage. We build all our DVR systems to handle
the basic processing requirements (mainly video capture
and storage) but we also ensure that the CPU has more
than enough power to handle possible future upgrades.
For example, Celeron CPUs are sufficient for some DVR
Lite systems (four or fewer cameras, one OS/video data
storage drive, modem connection), while a high-end Pentium
III or Athlon CPU may be necessary to power a sixteen
camera system with multiple video data storage drives
and network serving capabilities.
Like CPUs, the amount of RAM in a DVR system is based
upon performance and equipment requirements. All DVR
systems have a minimum of 128 Megabytes (MB) of RAM,
but we have designed large multi-camera, multi-hard
drive systems that required 256 MB or more.
: At LAHITECH DVR, we review various
styles of mainboards for compatibility, features, and
stability, and select only those that meet our demanding
standards. Basic attributes include AGP 2x or better,
Ultra ATA/66/100/133 Hard Drive support, and a minimum
of 4 PCI slots. We currently build most of our systems
with mainboards from SOYO, ASUS, AOPEN, and TYAN.
: We review cases that provide superior
air flow, room for additional fans, and a stable CSA
approved power supply. We also select cases based upon
system requirements (bigger systems usually require
bigger cases), and, for some clients, appearance.
Drive : An old reliable standard, this
venerable piece of equipment still has useful features,
despite what some computer companies think...
Drive : Another standard piece of equipment,
which will soon be supplanted by DVD-RW drives with
CD-ROM compatibility. We currently include CD-RW drives
for most systems, although we can reduce this requirement
to a basic CD-ROM if a client has an alternative backup
Hard Drive : As the DVR system is designed
to store data on secondary drives, the operating system
and programs drive requires stability and reliability,
not huge amounts of storage space in other words, quality,
not quantity. Whether a system is based on IDE or SCSI,
we feel that Hard Drives from Western Digital. Maxtor,
or Seagate provide the best solutions.
Data Storage Hard Drives : We apply
the same standards as those of the operating system
Hard Drive to the video storage drives, except for the
aspect that bigger is truly better. Under most circumstances,
a drive of 20 to 40 Gigabytes (GB) is usually sufficient
to provide five to ten days worth of video data storage,
depending on frame rates and image quality. Smaller
DVR systems (four cameras or less) are equipped with
a single 60+ GB Hard Drives, while larger systems can
have from two to six Hard Drives, ranging from 60 to
100+ GB each.
Video Card :
An essential component of any computer system. As the
current DVR software uses certain compression routines
to optimize images, the video cards selected for the
DVR system must meet rigorous hardware and driver standards
to ensure optimum video fidelity and stability. Most
video cards selected for DVR systems have a minimum
of 16 MB of RAM, and undergo a battery of tests to ensure
complete compatibility. Currently, most DVRs are shipped
with video cards from ATI.
/ Network Card : The presence of one
or both of these items is dependant on the remote connection
medium selected by the client (modem based or LAN/WAN/Internet
based). All DVR approved modems transmit data at a rated
speed of 56k, while all ethernet cards have 10/100 Base-T
: A fairly standard item, connected
via PS/2 interface. DVR systems do not make use of the
wheel feature found on many modern mice, therefore mice
having this feature are not utilized.
: Again, a standard item connected via
a PS/2 connection. Internet keyboards and those that
support hotkeys are not approved for DVR usage, although
most will work fine if no extra drivers are installed.
: Most standard 15" monitors are
sufficient for four to six camera DVR uasge. However,
with larger, multi-camera systems, a larger monitor
can be of great benefit - for systems with twelve or
more cameras, the inclusion of a 19" or 21"
monitor is not an unusual option. Flat Screen LCD Monitors
are becoming very popular as prices continue to plunge
and all our DVR systems work well with these models.
We select monitors from different companies based upon
price, reliability, resolution, refresh rates, and warranties.
Printer : While most color printers
are sufficient for the printing of quick snap shots
from the DVR system, and we select printers that feature
high resolutions and the ability to print on photo-quality
paper, in order to ensure the best possible image from
the DVR system.
Board : At the heart of every Eagle
Eye system is a proprietary digital video capture card.
Developed in Korea, this 32-bit PCI card process the
complex video signals and regulates the flow of image
data back into the system. Designed for upgradeability,
add-on connectors can range the total number of video
inputs from four to sixteen, giving the comsumer maximum
longevity and flexibility.
Software : The Graphical User Interface
(GUI) of the LAHITECH DVR system is the layer of software
that exists between the surface world of the human user
and the underworld of the complex computer hardware.
The current edition of the GUI, the fourth one so far,
was designed primarily with usability in mind. Unlike
some software packages, the appearence was also created
to be pleasing to the eye, featuring rich red highlights
contrasted by gray base colours, with black gradients
and shadows for accents. Composed of three main sections
- control, setup and search - the GUI succeeds in making
the complex workings and numerous options of the DVR
system as user friendly as possible.