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Guide to Closed Circuit TV (CCTV)

So would you like to play "Spot the CCTV Camera?". Eagle eyed visitors may recognise the profusion of street furniture, surrounding a single heritage dome camera keeping watch over part  of Londons' prestigious Oxford Street shopping area.

They say a picture is worth
a thousand words ....

How to get the Best from a Monitor

Most people can turn on a television, but achieving the best possible picture quality, shouldn’t really require an engineering degree.

The basic set up procedure for any display device is quite straightforward; turn down both the brightness, contrast and colour settings to minimum. Gradually raise the contrast level, until the first hint of ‘peak white’ portions of the image begin to appear, then gently raise the brightness setting until an acceptable black and white image is visible on the screen.

Finally, bring up the colour adjustment until a well saturated level of chroma (colour) reproduction is achieved.

If a number of video sources are being switched through a single monitor, it’s worth comparing the settings from each camera, and then ‘compromise adjust’ to achieve the best overall result.

Remember, whilst various CCTV cameras can be set up to different levels, with some of the more obscure products, there can even be a significant variance between individual cameras from the same batch production. Not terribly helpful if you are trying to balance a comprehensive system.

It’s also important to take steps to prolong the overall operating life of a monitor, simply by taking a few common sense precautions. It’s already been mentioned that heat is perhaps the biggest problem for CRT monitors, and indeed the main cause of failure.

Always allow plenty of ventilation around the unit, and if necessary make provision for a small low voltage circulating fan, to minimise the risk of any ‘hotspots’ on the circuit board. Keep the monitor free from dust (do not wipe with a wet cloth; slightly damp at best and only with the unit switched off), and in particular, get into a routine of (dry) wiping clean the picture tube at regular intervals (take special note of the manufacturers recommendations if you are using a solid state 'flatscreen LCD display); oh and absolutely no smoking near the unit ... ever!!

Finally, try and position the monitor (and lighting) to minimise any reflections on the screen ... they're just SO annoying!

Monitor Controls and Functions >>

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