What is HDCVI technology (used for CCTV HD Video over coax)?

I bet you already heard or read something about the HDCVI technology used on high definition CCTV analog cameras, don't you?  

If you work in the surveillance system industry or are an enthusiast that likes to install your own security cameras, chances are you prefer to use the modern technologies that allow you to have HD resolution at a lower price.  

HDCVI cameras

Years ago was necessary to spend some considerable amount of money to buy a high-resolution IP security camera because this was the only option available in the market at that time.... Well, not anymore!

Since the introduction of high-definition analog security cameras technologies such as HDTVI, HDCVI, and AHD, the surveillance industry has changed a lot and now we can buy better security cameras with reduced prices.

==> To learn more about other technologies such as HDTVI and HDCVI please read the article: HDTVI, HDCVI, and AHD comparison.

In this article, I will focus on the HDCVI technology which is widely available in many security cameras in the market in different parts of the world.

What is HDCVI?

HDCVI  stands for High Definition Composite Video Interface. It's a technology used to transmit high-definition analog video over coaxial cable. It was developed by the Chinese company Dahua as an inexpensive alternative to the IP CCTV system and became a standard largely used by the surveillance industry.

HDCVI camera to a recorder

The technology is still based on the composite video but it's much better and keeps evolving to bring more resolution and new features. Back in 2012, the HDCVI cameras were created to support 720p resolution which later evolved to 1080p. 

The benefits of HDCVI technology?

By using the HDCVI technology it's possible to transmit HD (High-Definition) video over long distances using the traditional coaxial cables such as RG59 and RG6 which reduces the cost of infrastructure. especially when an old analog CCTV system is being upgraded with the addition of high-resolution cameras.

With more than 500 million analog camera around the world, it's interesting to have a technology that still keeps the principle of analog video transmission but with the benefits of better image quality. 

Before the high-resolution analog cameras, the only solution to upgrade and improve an old CCTV system was to offer the IP technology which comes with the need of infrastructure changes such as replacing the coaxial cable for the UTP cables or to use transceivers with the technology Ethernet over coax.

The HDCVI 3.0

Since its creation in 2012, the HDCVI technology has evolved from the 720p 1080p and 4K resolution. It is now in the 3.0 version which allows the transmission of HD video, audio, data, and even power over a coaxial cable.

==> It's important to learn more about power over coaxial cable, so please read the article: What is Power Over Coax (PoC) for CCTV

Another important improvement in the HDCVI 3.0 is the implementation of the Starlight technology which allows to obtain crisp and clear images even in low light conditions. A camera that uses such technology only needs 0.008 lux of light to generate useful images.

This version also brings the WDR (Wide Dynamic Range) technology with 120dB to 140dB (higher is better) to improve images in an area with light contrast.

The ASC (Automatic Signal Compensation) is also part of the HDCVI technology and allows for a low distortion signal over long distances. You can install an HDCVI camera up to 700m away from the HDCVI video recorder.

PTZ control

Years ago was necessary to run extra cables to control a PTZ (Pan, Tilt, Zoom) camera thus increasing the cost of infrastructure. With modern technology comes the solution such as the PTZ command control over coaxial cables.

This technology was invented many years ago by Pelco with the name coaxitron and later other manufacturers such as Samsung and Hikvision created their own protocol. And Dahua did the same with the HDCVI technology.


The DVRs (Digital Video Recorders) that support the HDCVI 3.0 can be considered as hybrid devices since they support the use of AHD, IP, HDCVI and HDTVI cameras which is a huge advantage for system upgrades e compatibility.

Intelligent features

The HDCVI 3.0 technology supports intelligent features such as face recognition, people counting, smart tracking, smart scene adaptation, and heat mapping.

The most common IP cameras intelligent video features such as scene change, virtual tripwire, and missing/abandoned object are also supported by the HDCVI 3.0 which allow the use of advanced analytics at a reduced price.

Applications for the HDCVI technology

The HDCVI technology available in security cameras and recording is very interesting for applications in vertical markets such as banks, casinos that need to have high-resolution security systems for real-time monitoring without latency. 

This technology is so inexpensive that allow its use in small businesses and homes where people are not willing to pay a high-priced for a surveillance system.

Where to buy HDCVI cameras and recorders

Since the Chinese manufacturer Dahua developed the HDCVI technology, you can find Dahua HDCVI cameras in the market. They are available on distributors, resellers and even on the Amazon Store.

You can also find other security camera brands that also use the HDCVI technology since Dahua allows the use of the technology by other companies and also sell its cameras and recorders without its brand so the distributors can put their own.

You can find cameras and recorders from Optview, IC Realtime, Intelbras and many others that have a "Dahua engine " in the core of their devices.

Video: Advantages of the Dahua HDCVI cameras

The following video shows a quick presentation of Dahua HDCVI cameras.

This video is from the Dahua YouTube Channel

Final thoughts 

The HDCVI technology came to give extra life to the analog systems and allow to have better high-definition cameras with lower prices. I believe this is something very good for the market since it pushes every company to keep working on new ways to improve quality while reducing the prices.

You can use HDCVI cameras and recorders from Dahua and other brands to enjoy high-quality videos and interesting features without breaking the bank.

Learn more about surveillance cameras

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