Attempting to understand the various options and connections of CCTV cameras can be confusing. Especially if you are newer to this technology and trying to determine what the best option may be for you, your home and the protection of your assets.
Part of the problem is a large number of options and different styles you can choose from. One of those options happens to be PoE CCTV cameras. When it comes to PoE CCTV cameras, I often see and hear a lot of questions about connection and viewing options. Do PoE cameras require internet? Here’s what I can tell you on this topic.
So, do PoE cameras require internet? PoE cameras often connect like an IP camera. IP cameras, in general, do not need the internet to function but you would not be able to remote view the footage without the internet. PoE cameras do use ethernet as a power source but do not need WiFi to gain functionality and use.
If that may have been somewhat confusing for you, don’t fret. I plan to break this down a bit further to help you understand what I’m referring to and give you a full scope overview of how PoE cameras get a connection and how they are connected to a primary power source. Let’s dive into those details now.
More on PoE Cameras Connection Abilities and Power Source Options
PoE cameras are unique in several ways, and one of the best options you can elect to purchase for your CCTV systems. They have stable connections and offer a natural power source directly to your IP camera. PoE CCTV systems also provide perhaps the best quality video resolution and one of the most secure platforms for CCTV cameras to run off.
Overall, if I were opting to purchase a new CCTV camera system, PoE would be at the top of my list. PoE is used in many different applications due to its stability and connection speeds.
IP cameras are certainly one of the primary devices that utilize PoE, but you also have other devices and software such as VoIP softphone software. This is partly due to what we discussed previously. PoE offers superior connection and security compared to other connections options.
PoE Connections Without Internet, Is It Possible?
What we haven’t discussed up to this point about the benefits of using PoE technology for your CCTV camera systems is if it can be used with no internet connection. The answer is Yes.
You can use PoE without an internet connection but still need to connect to a power source and have a way of viewing your footage using either SD card storage, an NVR or stored and transferred directly to your PC.
Where most of the confusion comes from is the fact that you can use IP cameras in general without an internet connection. This can be done simply by using the mobile app or a desktop to view your footage directly from the camera without having a wireless connection.
However, when using a PoE, you are using your network to supply your CCTV cameras with power. Again, the most significant difference is the PoE cameras using the same network cables as a power supply.
Another common misconception with PoE cameras comes down to the secondary options you can use to gain connection and power.
PoE Cameras Don’t Necessarily Need a Router to Work
Although PoE cameras do need an ethernet cord for connection, that doesn’t mean that they require a router or wireless connection to function correctly.
PoE cameras are often directly wired into the IP camera directly from the modem or an NVR that allows for local viewing options and offers up other perks of the camera as well.
Using Your NVR/DVR Without an Internet Connection for PoE Cameras
Another alternative you can turn to use PoE cameras is to wire into your NVR/DVR system directly. To do this, you can use the option channels available such as 4/8 channels and have a wire running directly from the PoE cameras into your storage device.
If the DVR/NVR has power and is function correctly, you can easily just connect a monitor using VGA or HDMI to view your footage.
Using this method is not going to allow you to use your cameras from remote locations or by using wireless capabilities, but it’s an option to consider that will still allow for PoE cameras to be used without having access to the internet.
To Rephrase, Can PoE CCTV Cameras Be Used Without WiFi?
I wanted to take the time to break this down from another angle. Can you use these higher end PoE cameras without having access to the internet or without having an active WiFi connection? Yes, you can, but your abilities are going to be much more limited in doing so.
If you plan to use your PoE cameras without a WiFi connection, you will be limited to only viewing and recording your footage locally. This is going to force you to see your footage using an older school method such as connecting your CCTV cameras do a PC and stored directly on a hard drive.
You could also opt to use something such as an NVR or a PoE camera that allows you to record your data onto an SD card which you will then be required to transfer to a computer or another device to view the footage that has been taken.
You Will Still Have Other Features Available to You Using PoE Cameras Without Active WiFi
Another often overlooked piece of the equation when it comes to using PoE cameras without active WiFI connections is the ability to use certain features and perks of the cameras without connection abilities. Some of these features include the following listed below.
- Motion Alerts
- Remote Viewing
- Automatic Backups
This is all since PoE cameras do not require an internet connection to transmit data internally to each other, allowing for many functions to remain intact regardless of your current internet connection.
A Final Method of Use for PoE CCTV Cameras Without Using WiFi or Wireless Connections
A final and often overlooked ability to use PoE cameras is the ability to do so while using a different method of connection. This is known as connecting your CCTV cameras using 4G Mobile. It’s another unique way CCTV camera is now capable of grabbing connection when the internet is just not possible.
While WiFi and Internet May Be the Best Use for PoE Cameras, Always Consider Alternatives
No question using the internet and a stable connection allows for the best and most clever use of CCTV cameras. Especially PoE cameras. However, many consumers don’t realize that these other options are currently available and could still suit you just fine.
It’s essential always at least to consider using PoE cameras regardless of your WiFI connection. Mainly because so many features and uses are still available regardless of having the ability to connect to the internet.
Viewing your footage from your computer, an SD card or even opting to use the 4G Mobile option may not be the most ideal set-up you can find but it certainly still works and allows for you to place protection around your home, business, other properties, and your assets.
At the end of the day, nothing else really matters if you are gaining the protection you need to make you feel comfortable and providing some form of a deterrent to your properties to keep undesirable actions and behaviors from taking place on your property.
Where Should I Begin Looking for PoE Cameras for My Home or Business
This entirely depends on your preferences. Sometimes individuals are perfectly fine with searching online marketplaces such as Amazon to purchase CCTV cameras. Personally, this is the approach I prefer to take and the method I often do take when purchasing my equipment.
However, it also depends on your knowledge of the products. Sometimes speaking to a professional about your needs is the best approach you can take if you feel more comfortable getting the inside details about the system you are considering purchasing.
It all ultimately depends on your situation. If you know and understand precisely what you want, I recommend finding the best deals by searching for an online marketplace. This will often save you money compared to purchasing your devices inside of an actual department store.
If, however, you feel as if you must learn to do on the products and specifications, you should lean towards something such as speaking to professional and purchasing from a retailer such as BestBuy for the best results.
Although PoE Cameras Offer Many Options Without Internet and WiFi, I’d Lean Towards Connecting
I know that this far into this post it’s apparent that you can gain some use out of CCTV PoE cameras without having the ability to use them while connected to WiFI. However, if it were my system, I’d undoubtedly be attempting to connect to WiFI or a stable internet connection before trying the other options.
On the flip side, these options often aren’t available, so we don’t have a choice. Nonetheless, if this is the case for you, a PoE camera can still offer protection, a strong deterrent and peace of mind regardless of your internet connection or your home network.
I’d love to hear your feedback on this topic as well. Be sure to drop a comment below and share your thoughts about using PoE cameras without an active internet connection.