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December 20, 2019

DVR Vs. NVR - What's The Difference & Which One Is Better?

Quite a large number of people will want to set up security cameras in their home or business’ property. However, this begs the question of which system should be chosen, with there being quite a significant amount on offer at Regardless of whether you’re looking for wireless security cameras or wired ones, there are a few common options to choose from.

Perhaps the most popular of these is an NVR and a DVR security system. Since there are quite a significant number of security camera systems with DVR and NVR available, many people may struggle to choose between them.

While a certain amount of this may be focused on individual products, many people might not understand the differences between NVR and DVR security cameras. Though you might assume that this could be quite complicated, it could be relatively straightforward. However, there are still a few things to know when choosing between them.

NVR vs. DVR – The Basics

You might be wondering what the differences between an NVR and DVR system might be. This can best be highlighted by defining what both of them are. Alongside this, it might be worth looking through where both of them shine, as this could help you decide which one might be best for your needs.

NVR stands for network video recorder that captures digital footage before transferring it to an electronic device. Typically, this security footage will be stored on a USB flash drive, SD Card (News - Alert), disk drive, or something similar.

This doesn’t have any dedicated video capturing hardware instead operating on an embedded operating system. This then allows it to transfer and save footage to a variety of devices. These will usually need a cable to run between the NVR and any security cameras, although this is all done on the one ethernet cable.

You should also be able to find a variety of wireless options, which should give you a significant amount of flexibility. However, this could make the connection slightly unstable, though this will depend on where your wireless security cameras are placed.

A digital video recorder, or DVR, operates quite similar to this, although there are a variety of core differences. This is mainly seen in the fact that a DVR converts analog footage into a digital format, whereas an NVR typically only works with digital footage.

This usually means that you’ll have to have a DVR connected to your security cameras, as there might not be any other ways to use it. Much of this is because the cameras may not be able to function without it.

The DVR will take all of the analog footage and then convert it into a digital format before saving it on a drive. Typically, you’ll be able to use the same kind of drives as those used with an NVR.

Benefits Of A DVR Security System

There are quite a few notable benefits to a DVR security system, each of which helps make it increasingly more attractive. Many of these further enhance the differences between it and an NVR. As such, it’s worth considering what some of these core benefits are.

The most obvious of these include:

  • Minimal Bandwidth (News - Alert) Usage: Since the security cameras work independently, they shouldn’t need to take up many resources, especially when it comes to internet usage. This could prove to be quite useful for many of us while also helping to keep costs low.
  • Signal Stability: Unlike NVRs, you shouldn’t need to worry about signal stability once the security cameras are set up. This should mean that you’ll get the same quality of feed regardless of how well your internet is working.
  • Cost: This is one of the more notable benefits with a DVR security system, as they tend to cost somewhat less than NVRs, which could be a benefit if you’re working on a budget.

While there can be quite a significant number of benefits to a DVR security system, it can also have a few negatives. Like many other products, you should make sure that you’re aware of these before you make your decision.

Benefits Of An NVR Security System

Like a DVR, an NVR security system boasts a variety of pros and cons. These could play quite a prominent role in your decision when you’re choosing between them. Many of these could make this system look more attractive than its counterpart, which makes them worth considering.

The largest of these are:

  • Image Quality: The quality of the video that you get from an NVR security camera should be much better than seen elsewhere. This could be up to a 4K resolution, depending on which security cameras you’re using.
  • Flexibility: This is one of the more notable benefits of an NVR security system. You should be able to place wireless security systems almost anywhere while still receiving a high-quality signal from them.
  • Easy To Install: While NVRs typically weren’t easy to install, they’ve become much better recently. As such, these could be much quicker to set up than DVRs.

Many of these benefits may not be seen with a DVR system, which means that this may be one of the better options. While you might have to pay somewhat more than its alternative, the extra features and benefits may be worth it.


Many people might assume that choosing between DVR and NVR security cameras has to be difficult. This shouldn’t be true, as it could be much more straightforward than you might have imagined. However, you’ll still need to put some time and effort into knowing what you need from a security system.

Once you have these in hand, you should then determine which one of the two systems will be better at meeting your needs. While this could take you some time to figure out, it should be time well spent. This is mainly because it will make sure that you choose the right system for you.

By doing so, you should be able to ensure that you’ve got everything covered and wouldn’t be able to take advantage of all the benefits that a system offers

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