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February 12, 2006

Setting up a Barn WebCam - Part 5

The next piece that you will need for your barn camera is a source of power and a way to get the video signal back to your house.

You will need to run a power line to the location where your camera will be located. Just make sure the cable is adequately protected from curious donkeys!

Now for the camera signal cable! There are two ways you can get a CCTV camera signal from your camera location back to your house or wherever your TV monitor or computer are located.

Wireless seems a lot simpler – no cables to burry. But I chose not to use wireless. The disadvantage is that the CCTV camera wireless transmitters are dependant on a clear line-of-sight from the transmitter to the receiver. Therefore if you had a bad snowstorm, or a tree was planted in between the transmitter and receiver, you would get a lower quality signal. There are commercial transmitters that are supposed to transmit the CCTV signal wireless over a longer distance (more than 400 feet), but when I was looking at them last spring they were pretty pricey.

So when I set up my webcam, I chose to use RG11 Coax Cable. My camera is located about 450 feet from where my computer is, and this cable did an excellent job of carrying the signal back. For cameras located farther away, you may want to talk to the specialists at your local security camera store to give you a recommendation that will work well for you.

You can buy the RG11 Coax Cable from your local security camera store. If you buy it in a large roll, you will probably need to also buy the connectors to put on the ends of the cable. You will want BNC connectors – they should plug into your camera and into your TV monitor or computer devise. These connectors can be purchased at your local security camera shop.

The BNC connectors usually are available in two different styles – ones that screw on to the end of the cable, and ones that crimp on to the end of the cable. I prefer the crimp on kind because they are less likely to come off once you have crimped them on.

Now you can go out and start running your cable! Just be sure to leave enough extra on the end so that you can reach your computer in the house or wherever your TV monitor will be located.

Now you should have all the pieces you need to be able to set up your camera and hook it into your TV monitor and watch your donkeys from inside your house! Next time I’ll start explaining about how to connect your camera system into the Internet and add your new WebCam to your website!

Kristie Jorgensen

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Posted by Kristie Jorgensen at February 12, 2006 08:30 PM