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In its truest form, a CCTV camera is an analog video camera that transmits signals via coaxial cable to a single central location for monitoring, recording, and video analysis. While the recent trend is a push towards IP network cameras, CCTV cameras are still widely used and offer a cost-effective answer to many common surveillance scenarios.

CCTV technology has been around since the 1940s and became a major player in the security industry around 1970. The technology is tried and true, and there are CCTV security camera models for virtually any surveillance application. The two main categories of CCTV cameras are fixed cameras and pan/tilt/zoom models which can rotate horizontally and vertically to cover more area.

Pros of analog CCTV
Lower initial cost - In most cases, analog cameras cost less upfront than IP network cameras. Wide-spread compatibility - Mixing and matching camera models and surveillance equipment from different manufacturers is easy with an analog CCTV security camera. Lower initial cost - Analog cameras tend to handle low-light situations better than IP cameras on average, though IP camera technology is improving in this regard.