Best PoE switch for IP cameras

IP camera security system is a type of surveillance system which can transport video in real-time and record the footage to SD card or hard drive. It is common practice to set up the ip camera system by using a PoE switch. The PoE switch has integrated with PoE technology which allows both power and data to be transported through single Ethernet cable. The power adaptor doesn’t need present closed to the camera anymore. The PoE saves the installation cost and makes the setup easily. How to choose PoE switch? This article will go through the things you need to know before buying a PoE switch.

· Speed
There have 2 major kinds of PoE switch for ip camera system in the market, 100M and 1000M gigabit. Few 10G PoE switch are available as well. The speed is about how fast the data can be processed and transported between the devices. Actually, 100M PoE switch is good enough for IP cameras. The data rate of 8 megapixel camera is only about 20 Mbps per channel. Usually, there are uplink ports which will be connected to NVR or main network. It is better to have gigabits capacity on those ports, as all the data are gathering there. If the budget is not tight, pick the full Gigabit, but make not much difference. The 100M PoE switch can meet the bandwidth demands from ip cameras system for home or small-medium business.

· Power budget
Th PoE switch not only supply the network communicating but also the power to remote ip camera. While connecting all the cameras to PoE switch, it is necessary to confirm each of IP cameras has received enough power. The IEEE802.3 af/at specific the maximum power output in single port. IEEE802.af standard supply 12W and and IEEE802.3at (PoE+) supply 25.5W. The camera with infrared usually takes less than 12W. 25.5W will be enough for PTZ camera. However, it may need high power when heat is built in to the camera. The 95W IEEE802.3 bt standard products are ready now.

· Ports and SFP
Choosing different number ports of PoE switch depends on quantity of IP cameras in the system. It is always good to reserve some ports for future usage. There are 6, 8, 12, 24 ports on the market. You can expand the ports by adding new PoE switch. While one PoE switch is not enough for all the ip cameras, add a new switch and connect to the first one will increase the ports easily.

Some of the PoE switch has two empty slots next to the uplink port. It is the slot for SFP module. What is SFP? SFP, small form-factor Pluggable, is a compact, hot-pluggable optical module transceiver used for both telecommunication and data through fiber optical cable. The advantage of fiber optical is fast speed, low latency and long distance. With SFP, two switches can be linked together in several kilometers. The maximum fiber network distance is 80KM. If there is long distance between two switches, SFP fiber optical is the right solution to go. The maximum cable network distance is 100 meter. Even using network extender, it can be extended to 500 meters only.

· VLAN
VLAN is quit essential for IP cameras system. A virtual LAN (VLAN) isolates the RJ45 ports next to each other at the data link layer. Generally speaking, the camera connecting to the PoE ports can’t see each other with VLAN enable. They are blocked by the VLAN. All the PoE ports only have path to the uplink. It can guarantee the cameras operating independently without interference. If someone try to take advantage of one camera to get other, it can’t be done when VLAN is enable.

· Manageability
There are 3 types of PoE switch on the market, fully managed, smart managed and unmanaged. Both Fully managed and smart managed PoE switch allow users to adjust and control every port’s power and network traffic, VLAN etc. Smart managed PoE switch reserve the partial functions of fully managed, like visual smart managed PoE switch which has LCD display built in. The users can monitor all connecting status in real-time and configure switch by using button around the LCD screen.

Not only the PoE switch, but also PoE NVR can be used to set up IP camera system. Click to find out the differences between external PoE switch and PoE NVR in IP camera security system.

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