Two-way audio security cameras are becoming increasingly popular for home consumers and businesses. Most surveillance cameras with audio from online-retailers and big-name brands do not live up to expectations due to poor audio quality. Built-in microphones and speakers can be cheaply made, and produce hard to hear and low quality sound that can hardly be used to deter a would-be vandal or intruder. In this guide we show you the benefits of using an outdoor security camera from CCTV Camera World with an external microphone and speaker to setup your own professional two-way audio camera.
This biggest advantage of buying a IP security camera with line-in/out audio connections is the resolution of video. As it stands, popular doorbell cameras with built-in audio from big brands like Ring or Nest are limited to 1080P video which is only plain old HD. CCTV Camera World’s selection of cameras that support external audio range from 1080P up to UltraHD 4K. 4K video with high quality audio is the best of both worlds when using two-way audio security cameras or just even as a security camera with mic.
Another advantage is the flexibility and customization that is possible. Since the cameras have RCA audio connectors any microphone or speaker can be connected, and their mounting location is flexible. Speakers with built-in amplifiers are required to have loud and clear audio at the camera. Greater flexibility in placement of the microphone and speaker eliminates the need to reinstall the security camera multiple times to find the perfect spot for audible two-way interaction.
Table of Contents
- How to use a two-way audio security camera?
- Where to install a two-way audio security camera?
- Which cameras support Two-Way Audio?
- How to connect a speaker and microphone to a security camera?
- How to enable two-way audio?
- Using a two-way audio camera with a PC or Mac
How to use a two-way audio security camera?
Before we get to deep in the how-to section, below is a quick video clip in which we demonstrate how easy it is to use our two-way audio cameras. You can see our demo camera setup with microphone and speaker from our visitors point of view. This setup is more flexible than surveillance cameras with a built-in mic and speaker.
We suggest using our two-way audio add-on kit for IP cameras to ensure that you don't run in to problems. We cannot support use of microphones and speakers purchased elsewhere. The hardware we sell is tried and tested to ensure it is compatible with our security camera products. See for yourself how loud and clear the two-way audio conversation is.
Where to install a two-way audio security camera?
Two-way audio cameras are often used by homeowners and business owners to check up on family or employees. Listed below are some of the most common uses for homes and businesses.
Home Uses of Two-Way Audio Security Cameras
- Front porch for visitors and deliveries - use two-way audio to greet a guest or instruct a courier where to leave a package.
- Back porch or lawn - mount a microphone and speaker further away from a home to communicate with children, or family who are working or playing in the yard.
- Alerting Intruders - loudspeakers can startle and scare away intruders whether it’s a bonafide threat or pesky neighbor.
- Elderly or Hospice care - Keep an eye on elderly or at-risk adults who need monitoring or assistance. Using a loud speaker can be a great help when conversing with the elderly who have hearing difficulty.
Business Uses of Two-Way Audio Security Cameras
- Employees - Give direction to or make sure that employees are staying on task.
- Shipping/Receiving - Communicate with UPS, FedEx, DHL, and Postal service couriers for deliveries and pickup.
- Access Control - Supplement an access control system like a remote door strike to monitor and converse with visitors at the door.
- Solicitors and Loiterers - Turn away unwanted solicitors and loiterers without having to leave the chair.
Which security cameras support Two-way audio?
CCTV Camera World offers select IP cameras with two-way audio capabilities; these cameras have RCA connections for a speaker and microphone. For indoor use in a quiet environment we recommend purchasing our built-in Two-Way Audio Security Camera or Indoor Wireless Two-Way Audio Security Camera.
What's needed to setup a two-way audio IP camera?
All you need to setup a two-way audio camera can be purchased in our two-way audio kit. Below is a list of what is included in our two-way audio camera kit that you would use along with any of our IP security cameras that support a mic and speaker.
- 12V DC 1 Amp Power Supply
- 1 to 2 Way DC Power Cable Splitter
- Outdoor Security Camera Microphone Or Indoor Security Camera Microphone for indoor use.
- Outdoor Speaker with Built-in Amplifier
- RCA to 3.5mm Jack Adapter
- RCA Male to RCA Male Coupler
If you plan on using your own speaker, make sure the speaker has a built-in amplifier.
How to connect a speaker and microphone to a security camera?
The picture below shows how everything should be connected to a two-way camera. In this demonstration we used our IPC4K11D 4K dome camera. A bullet camera that has mic/speaker inputs will have the same RCA connectors.
How to enable and use two-way audio on a security camera?
Using our free smartphone apps and PC or Mac client software, you can use any of our two-way audio cameras to converse with a person standing in front of the camera. After the camera or security camera system has been connected to the mobile app or computer software by following this guide, it takes only the touch of a button to start talking.
Enabling two-way audio using the web interface
In the video below we show how to enable the audio line-in function on our IP cameras for two way talk. We show how to do this process by forwarding into a camera that is connected to an NVR using the web interface. The speaker does not require setup as long as it is wired properly to the camera. You can also control the volume settings in this menu. If you are using the web browser interface to view your system simply click the Microphone icon instead of the speaker icon to start two-way audio interaction.
Using a two-way audio camera with a PC or Mac
You can also access the camera using our free central monitoring software. Please follow our Monitoring Software Guide to download, install, and add your camera to the software. After you have added the camera to your PC or Mac simply follow the video guide below to view and interact with your two-way audio camera.
By following this easy setup guide you can customize your very own two-way audio security camera and achieve audio quality that fits your needs. Please make note that the speaker required in such applications must have an amplifier built-in, otherwise the audio will be inaudible. If you have any questions, and need further assistance in setting up a camera that you have purchased from CCTV Camera World, feel free to use our support form to submit a question.