How To Install A Surveillance Camera To A Computer

3 Jul

 To install a surveillance camera system there are four elements needed.

1- A Digital Video Recorder Card (DVR). This is what records motion video to your hard disk. An example of one is Geovision.
2- A PC that has an available port to install the card. For example Dell, HP, IBM etc.
3- A surveillance color camera. For example Sony, Panasonic, Canon etc.
4- A Camera Bracket plus the mount for the wall or ceiling.
5- A couple of connectors for the cables
6- Wire Strippers/cutter
7- Cable (Video/Power) The extension cable combines both the power and the video signal to one multi-purpose cable. This will feed the camera with power and then transmits the video signal from the camera to the computer.
8-DC Power Supply for the camera.


1- Connect the couplers to the cables. You can buy cables that already have a coupler connector but if you do that you should be aware that they only sell them in certain lengths. For example if it’s only 25 ft you will not be able to customise them. So if you decide to buy them already together measure the distance between your PC and where you will connect the cameras. Professional camera installers use the cable in big roll then cut it and connect it to the coupler connectors as they work, this way they customise the cable length and don’t waist cable.
2- Installing the DVR card inside your PC. Before you install the card, check the specs of your PC and be sure that they meet the minimum requirement for the DVR card you have, the requirement should be located in the DVR manual.
3- Insert the CD that comes with your DVR card inside your PC and run the Wizard Installation. Follow the steps one by one, just clicking next after finishing each step until the installation is completed. This will install the video and the audio for the cameras. Most cameras come with video audio feed. A special note here would be to check with your States’ regulations about audio recording people without their approval, it is ILLEGAL in some states.
4- After the software part is completed, now it is time to install the hardware. Turn your PC off and unplug the power cable from the PC. Insert the DVR card inside a free slot in your PC, be certain that the card is inserted all of the way, screw it in and plug the connector dangles to the DVR car port.
5- Before you hang up the camera, run a test first while it’s still near your computer. Plug the video with video and the audio with the audio. Then connect the power, the AC adapter to the cable that is connected to the camera and turn your PC on.
6- Open the surveillance software located on your PC. You will see the video motion if every thing is installed correctly and all the cameras are working fine.
7- Wiring it consumes most of the installation time. Go ahead and hook the cameras on the mounts on your walls and route your cables to the cameras location.

If you have any question about how to install a surveillance camera to a computer or you need more detailed information about how to install security camera please email me at

and I will be more than happy to answer your questions ASAP.

Written By: JEF M. copyright 2008


10 Responses to “How To Install A Surveillance Camera To A Computer”

  1. frank August 29, 2008 at 8:48 am #

    what if i would like to use my laptop? do i need the save DVR ?

  2. frank August 29, 2008 at 8:48 am #

    i mean the same DVR.. thanks

  3. Geoffex September 9, 2008 at 8:44 am #

    am trying to install a surveillance camera but i am stuck, i fixed the video card in the pc and its drivers but when i connect the cameras i see nothing. i dont have the surveillance software to see my card. its LS 2008 and the camera is of a model Bo 688 SONY JAPAN what should i do?

  4. tangnguyen January 1, 2009 at 5:21 pm #

    I need to connect my survillance camera to my computer but I am lost after I read your instruction; please help ?

  5. bno February 7, 2009 at 8:30 pm #

    can we use your how to install a surviallance camera to a computer for a presention in class.

  6. David dailey February 8, 2009 at 1:29 pm #

    to whom it may concern:

    My name is David and my classmates and I are asking for your permission to use this example of installing surveillance to PC for a class project we are working on. We will give you full credit for the reference and works cited.

    Thank you in advance.

  7. nasar ahamed pm March 29, 2009 at 3:43 am #

    i installed dvr card and instaled driver and setup
    when i open setup to record the computor getting hang
    why this is happening please answer me

  8. Nathan Redcliffe May 2, 2009 at 6:03 am #

    We are a new company that started a month ago very inexperienced in the how to install CCTV cameras.We install DSTV products & Alarm systems and our clients are requesting from us to quote them on camera systems and we have absolutely no idea where to begin, we have managed to obtain a few quotes and price lists, but it’s all Greek to us.What we looking for is what a package consists off, affordable yet effective system for our current client base.
    Please assist

  9. aiyaz May 10, 2009 at 5:54 pm #

    Hi i have a swann dvr4 1000 surveillance system, and my pc has a S Video card will i be able to use that. i tryed it but did not have any joy may be i need some software with it please help

  10. Anonymous March 14, 2010 at 8:14 am #

    call sony usa

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