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Wired vs. Wireless Security Cameras: Pros & Cons

Published 08/04/2022 by General Security

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Editor’s Note: This blog post was originally published in December 2019 and has been revised to reflect industry updates.

 

Designed to protect your loved ones, home and property, wired and wireless security each boast distinct characteristics suited for specific environments and users. Examining both can help you choose the best model. 

Several factors to consider regarding wireless cameras include connection reliability, smart home advantages, video monitoring and notification, resolution, and encryption. The installation process, location, and power outage backup should be noted with wired models.

When implementing any type of home security system, it’s recommended you weigh the pros and cons of each camera to determine which is best for your needs. 

 

Let’s review each camera’s features, examine pros and cons, and outline best practices.

 

Questions to Ask When Comparing
Wired vs. Wireless Cameras

Whether adding indoor, outdoor, doorbell cameras, or a combination of all three, choosing the best camera starts with how many you’ll require, and its intended use. This can range from combatting so-called “porch pirates,” vandals, and thieves, to ensuring elderly loved ones and children are safe when you cannot be there. 

When comparing wired and wireless security camera solutions, keep these questions in mind:

  • What is the best location for my camera?
  • How much time should I allow for installation?
  • What is the best long-term solution? 
  • Which offers the best protection for my security needs? 
  • Which provides the most benefits?

 

Wired Security Camera Benefits

A wired solution is recommended if installing multiple cameras on a larger property. It’s dependent on a single-cable Power Over Ethernet (PoE) connection that can run multiple devices without overextending your network. This system is also challenging to hack, since it’s on a closed network. While there’s no guarantee that any solution is 100-percent free of incidents, wired models carry slightly lower risks.

Stability is also a key feature with this network, with users having several choices of where to install them. Interfering signals is also something you won’t have to consider.

Wired security cameras are well suited for new construction projects, since installation may entail loud power tools and possibly opening walls to run cables. For a pre-existing space, it’s best to work with an experienced installer who utilizes a drilling and fishing method, running cables and wires through walls and ceilings without disturbing the current structure. For leased spaces, check with the building management prior to indoor or outdoor installation, as some may not permit tenants to alter an existing structure.

If your location is vulnerable to lengthy or frequent outages, you'll need to purchase a camera with a backup battery. This will ensure functionality until power is restored. In some cases, you won’t have data access during the outage, but with the proper battery backup and network components, this can be bypassed. Data can also be viewed on an alternative device if the camera features a Secure Digital (SD) or memory card drive.

Pros

  • No Interfering Signals From Competing Devices or Appliances
  • Stable Connections
  • Suitable for New Construction Projects
  • Can Run for Long Periods Without Overextending Power

 

Cons

  • Could Experience Interruptions During Installation
  • Not Recommended for Leased or Temporary Spaces
  • Battery Backup Required if Location Experiences Frequent Outages


Wireless Security Camera Benefits

These cameras’ portability are a great fit for smaller, temporary areas, such as an apartment or other leased space. They're also an easy first step if you're looking to add smart home security components.

A wireless connection's absence of cords and cables make installation a cinch for any DIYer. Working with a company such as General Security can help ensure the correct project components are used. A wireless solution can help you achieve your smart home goals and other additions, such as motion sensors, remote monitoring, and more.

Both wired and wireless solutions can provide real-time alerts, but wireless offers a slightly easier set-up on any mobile device for 24/7 video analytics and monitoring. Decreased false alerts and distinguishing between humans, animals, and vehicles are two additional pluses. Virtual tripwires and activity zones can also be added, for smart alerts and geofencing.

If you're in a remote area or unsure of Wi-Fi connection strength, type “Speed Test” in Google, and click “Run Speed Test” in your search results. A strong connection is required to handle the bandwidth of high-resolution 1080p or 4k images. 

Whether adding indoor, outdoor, doorbell cameras, or a combination of all three, choosing the best camera starts with how many you’ll require, and its intended use.



Pros

  • Portability & Easy Setup
  • Suited for Smaller Spaces & Apartment Living
  • Can Facilitate Smart Home Goals
  • No Cords & Wires

 

Cons

  • Could Be Problematic in Areas With Unreliable Wi-Fi
  • Extra Security Encryption Could Be Required
  • Weak Connections Could Produce Low-Resolution Images & Video

When implementing any type of home security system, it’s recommended you weigh the pros and cons of each camera to determine which is best for your needs. 

 

Wireless Encryption for Added Security

While wireless technologies have improved recently, no system is ever 100-percent unbreakable. If you choose wireless, you'll have to take extra precautions to ensure the feed is secure.

According to security tips from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), wireless cameras can be high risk if you're running an open network. To address this, an extra security layer—such as wireless encryption—is required to keep access points secure. This demands an authentication protocol to secure information from being deciphered by network outsiders.

While this might be a cause for concern, it's best to consult with an industry professional experienced in regularly implementing this technology, such as General Security.

 

Wired vs. Wireless Cameras: A Final Analysis

If you require additional guidance, it’s helpful to consult a trusted professional. In the short term, they can identify determinant factors in your search for the right camera. They can also advise about longer-term maintenance and services.


General Security provides reliable, effective, and feature-rich security systems, giving homeowners around-the-clock safety, and peace of mind. Request a quote from us today.


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