A video encoder is a type of video unit that converts an analog video source to a digital format, by using a standard compression algorithm, such as H.264, MPEG-4, MPEG-2, or M-JPEG. Video encoders with multi-channel inputs allow you to digitize the analog video of multiple cameras at the same time.
Converting analog video to digital video transforms analog video systems (for example, CCTV) into video network systems. In video network systems, users on both local or remote workstations on the same network can view live or recorded video through a web browser or video management software. With video encoders, all analog cameras that are part of your system can be controlled remotely over the web.
How it works
With a video encoder, analog cameras, such as those found as part of a closed-circuit television (CCTV), can be used to store video recordings in the Stratocast™ cloud. Analog cameras are connected to video encoders through coaxial cables. Once connected, the video encoder converts the analog video source to a digital video stream and into the Stratocast™ cloud. With video encoders, both analog cameras and IP cameras can be part of the same system, and the video captured from both can be viewed through the Stratocast™ web client or Stratocast™ mobile apps.
When adding video encoders
- You add a video encoder by adding a video unit.
- Once a video encoder is added, the video encoder itself does not appear as part of your client's list of cameras, but the cameras that are connected to the encoder do appear. Cameras that are added by adding a video encoder appear with the suffix "_ [encoder input number]", where "encoder input number" represents the encoder's channel input that the camera is connected to.
- Once a video encoder is added, the number of channel inputs that appear in the client's list of cameras is dependent on the total number of channel inputs on the video encoder, not on how many cameras are connected to the video encoder. For example, if you add a video encoder that has four channel inputs, yet only two cameras are connected to the encoder, four separate cameras appear in the client's list of cameras, each one with its own suffix. This affects the billing of your camera plans.
- On the View page in your client's portal, black video appears for feeds stemming from channel inputs that do not have cameras connected to them.
Let's assume that you add a video encoder that you name Storefront, and that this video encoder has cameras connected to its second and third channel inputs. Once the video encoder is added to Stratocast™, the cameras appear as Storefront-1, Storefront-2, Storefront-3, and Storefront-4, yet only channel inputs Storefront-2 and Storefront-3 have actual cameras connected to them. Once added, you can edit the name of each camera individually.
When formatting or restarting cameras connected to video encoders
- A camera that is connected to a single-channel input video encoder that supports edge recording uses the storage device on the video encoder. As a result, if you format the camera that is connected to a single-channel input video encoder, the recordings from the connected camera are permanently deleted.
- If you restart a camera that is connected to a video encoder that has multiple cameras connected to it, all cameras that are connected to that same video encoder are restarted automatically.