How are PTZ Cameras Controlled?

Nowadays, the moment you walk into a mall or a store, you notice a surveillance camera in each corner, scrutinizing everything in their field of vision for potential malicious acts. But cameras with the ability to pan, tilt, and zoom (PTZ) have found additional recognition when it comes to security surveillance. Read on to know everything about PTZ cameras.  

You may outright asked, are PTZ cameras worth it? Well, that depends on your needs, but to help you, there are a lot of options right now in the market, see here for the list. 

PTZ camera mounted on the wall outside a building

Behind every mechanical device, there’s always a human at play. The PTZ camera is no exception. Once the controller gets the ball rolling, the camera would move in the default manner. This means that if the camera detects suspicious activity, it will focus on the activity and follow the action towards the conclusion. However, there is also a feature of preset Guard Tours. With this interesting feature, the controller of the camera can set beforehand the journey of the device. The PTZ can be controlled via the image panel-on-screen controller. The alternative is to use the tool in the PTZ control pane.

Presets, Patterns, and Tours 

The controls of the device largely depend upon the model you’ve bought. If the camera supports the control panel, you can easily add presets, patterns, and tours that would give you much control over the otherwise automatic device. The settings could be done right from the camera itself, and in case of customization, you can take the camera to customer support and have your configurations done by an expert.

From its swift up and down movement, right and left, and even zoom in and out, all these meticulous movements can be configured beforehand. Although, the field of view and the range of the camera needs to be considered before configuring the settings. While an average PTZ camera is equipped with 360 pan-capability and 180 tilt, this figure could vary from model to model. Full movement cameras cover a vast expanse of a room. It could easily sweep a room that would take 2 or 3 units of traditional surveillance cameras. (1)

PTZ Controller 

For the full-fledged control, you will be furnished with a comprehensive controller that can give you authority over the movements of the camera. The controller will be equipped with a joystick, zoom toggle, and some other control features to perform tasks. The joystick is used for panning and tilting, while the toggle is for zooming in and out. There will also be a keyboard that will be used for in-depth configuration. 

If you’ve got one of those CCU cameras, then your effort in managing and adjusting the cameras has been cut in half. But before you begin your viewing, you would have to set up a monitoring system. You could use a single monitor or a Multiview system for this task and have an excellent viewing experience. The standard video outlets such as HDMI and DVI would be apt for mirroring the camera on the screen as they are affordable, accessible, and yet exponentially effective on all fronts. (2)

Types of PTZ Camera And The Mode of Controlling Each

The type of PTZ camera you’ve got also has a major role in how it’s controlled, as each type serves different needs in different locations. 

1. PTZ – IP Camera


Amcrest UltraHD 5MP Outdoor POE CameraThe PTZ internet protocol cameras are state-of-the-art inventions that use WIFI to function as a separate entity with no strings attached. There are no hardwires or thin chords; just the connectivity of a strong WIFI and router is enough to get the ball rolling. Although, there might be a single short wire for power. 


2. Outdoor PTZ Camera


EVERSECU 5MP Auto Tracking 30x Zoom IP POE PTZ CCTV CameraAs the name suggests, these cameras are installed outdoors. These specialized cameras are built to endure the unpredictability of the weather. They are encapsulated in a water-proof and dust-proof exterior that protects their components from harmful weather elements, so it could be snowing or raining, or it could be exponentially humid, the camera could sustain all the elements thrown at it. 


3. Wireless PTZ Camera


3MP HD Outdoor Wireless Security CameraWireless PTZ cameras function without the aid of chords. The principle used in its operation is simple transmission and reception of video signals which then mirrors the image onto the video output that you have wirelessly connected the camera to. You can use the WIFI feature to mirror the images as well, but some cameras could receive the signals without the router working as the mediator between them. The outdoor PTZs are mostly bought for long-distance surveillance. But various shopping stores use the camera for screening the outdoors of their properties too. 



While PTZ may have some advanced features to traditional surveillance cameras, on some level, they are controlled just as the latter is. With the proper installation, monitoring connection, and knowledge of the controller, any kind of PTZ can be controlled conveniently. 


(1) 360 pan-capability –
(2) CCU cameras –

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John Fox

John Fox

Allow me to introduce myself. My name is John Fox and I’ve been working as a security consultant for over 20 years now. During my time in the industry, I’ve learned about what it takes to ensure your home and family are always safe. With Safe Now, I’ve tried to take those two decades of experience and share it with others. My goal now is to help others figure out how to make the right choices for their businesses and families. On my website, you’ll find tips and guides on how to prevent crimes, as well as product recommendations. What’s more, my readers can learn more about what to do in case of an emergency and how to protect themselves at all times. So, if you want to know everything there is about security systems and home safety, I invite you to join me and my team and help us build a community together.
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