Image compression technologies in surveillance cameras

Video compression technologies are essential in surveillance cameras to optimize management of network bandwidth and memory requirements. Choosing the right compression format depends on the needs of the surveillance system, and different formats, such as H.264, H.265 and MJPEG, have their advantages and disadvantages. The right choice of compression format can significantly affect image quality, system performance and monitoring infrastructure costs.

What is image compression?

Image compression is the process of reducing the size of image files while preserving as much relevant information as possible. Compression allows more efficient storage and transmission of image data, which is especially important in surveillance systems where large amounts of data are generated by multiple video cameras.

Popular image compression formats for surveillance cameras

Various compression formats are used in surveillance cameras, such as H.264, H.265 i MJPEG. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages, which should be taken into account when choosing the right format for a particular monitoring system.


H.264 is one of the most popular compression formats used in surveillance cameras. It offers good image quality at relatively high compression levels, saving network bandwidth and memory. The disadvantage of H.264 is that it can generate higher latency for live video compared to other compression formats.


H.265 is another popular compression format that offers better compression than H.264, resulting in smaller file sizes and faster data transmission. However, H.265 requires more processing power, which can lead to higher system load and higher hardware costs.


MJPEG is a compression format based on compressing individual frames as independent JPEG images. The advantage of MJPEG is its simplicity and low latency in transmitting live images. However, image quality may be lower than with H.264 or H.265, and network bandwidth and memory consumption may be higher. Compression level MJPEG is similar to the compression of JPEG and is 1:10.

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Choosing the right compression format for different applications

The choice of compression format depends on a number of factors, such as image quality requirements, network bandwidth and video storage capacity. H.264 is a good choice for systems that require high image quality with limited network and memory bandwidth. H.265 may be a better solution for systems with a larger number of cameras or where network performance is critical. MJPEG may be suitable for simple surveillance systems where transmission delays are important, but lower image quality and higher bandwidth consumption are acceptable.

Effect of image compression on image quality of surveillance cameras

Image compression affects the image quality of surveillance cameras, as it leads to the loss of certain information during the compression process. Compression formats, such as H.264 i H.265, offer high image quality at high compression levels to preserve more detail. In the case of MJPEG image quality may be lower, but low latency in transmission can be important in some applications.

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