Technical Support - S Series
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Sensitivity can be quoted in two different ways.

a) Usable picture

Sometimes this is called minimum illumination. This gives merely an indication of minimum light level at which the camera starts providing an output video signal.

b) Full video

This is the real value to be taken into consideration as it gives the lowest light value at which camera supplies a full output video signal "1V peak to peak". This value is important for the whole CCTV system because many devices need a full signal to operate properly.

Sensitivity can be measured:

a) At the faceplate

In this way, it measures the camera performance when light falls directly on the sensor faceplate. Although this is a technically correct figure, it never actually happens, because to get a real picture you need a lens, which reduces in some ways the light amount falling on the faceplate.

b) At the lens

This is a more effective value of the actual sensitivity of the camera + lens system. Obviously the lower the F-No., the better result you get.

<For instance>

A camera having a value of 0.1 Lux (full video) with f1.4 lens has a higher sensitivity than a camera showing the same value of 0.1Lux with f1.2 lens. By using f1.2 lens with the 1st camera its sensitivity would be possibly around 0.08 Lux. Another value to be taken into consideration is the scene reflectance (which is the light amount, in percentage, reflected by the scene).

The higher is the reflectance value, the higher is the light amount available to the camera faceplate. Usually the reflectance is something between 65% and 90%.

<For Instance>

A camera having a sensitivity of 0.1Lux (full video) with a f1.2 lens with a reflectance value of 70% is more sensitive than a camera having the same sensitivity (full video) with the same lens but at 90%.

The sensitivity value is normally specified in ‘Lux'. However some American Manufacturers give this value in foot-candle. 1Lux = 10fc.

S/N ratio signal/noise ratio

It is a measure showing the amount of interference caused by noise. Its value is important especially at low light levels. The higher its value, the better will be the picture quality at low light levels.


Standard Definition


NTSC system has 525 horizontal scan lines and 30 frames per second


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