I currently have 6 IP camera servers (Foscam 8910W) around my house. It costs a lot for each camera and I also think it's eating a lot of bandwidth. My questions are:

  1. Does the camera eat home ethernet bandwidth at ALL TIMES even when I am not watching streams on my mobile device?

  2. Does it make sense to create a USB webcam surveillance system instead? So hook up 6 webcams via USB hub to a desktop computer and run webcam software.

    • Would that take up less bandwidth since it's using USB?
    • Can I connect 6-port USB 2.0 hub to computer and connect 6 USB HD webcams to it? Would USB 2.0 support this many webcams?
    • any software recommendations?
  • 1
    Related: superuser.com/questions/497933/… – wmz Nov 28 '12 at 23:50
  • These cameras are all networked through your router, right? The router can probably be made to record traffic levels. – Isaac Rabinovitch Nov 29 '12 at 0:17
  • Is it possible somehow to make the IP cameras not use ANY traffic when I am not accessing the cameras from remote device? Wonder if there's a way to do that... – Scott Yu - Front-End UX Nov 29 '12 at 0:32

The USB solution will only use bandwidth if the traffic is sent across the network. If you are viewing locally, then no bandwidth used. The IP cameras will use bandwidth sending data to the central server. The way you configure the camera may have an impact so higher res/frames means more data.

Are you concerned about traffic only on the local network or is it an issue with bandwidth on your Internet connection?

As noted in the link by @wmz, six USB cameras should not be an issue.

I would look at adding some USB ports to assure bandwidth wdith. Something like the Startech 4 Port USB Card which has the "unique capability to provide full high-speed USB data transfer rates of up to 480 Mbps on each port independently"

Also note that apps like iSpyConnect have issue using multiple cameras from the same vendor. There are discussions around this on their site.

  • Thanks Dave. I am mainly concerned about wireless traffic.. some of the IP cameras are wireless and I want to use USB so I can keep my wireless traffic for web surfing. – Scott Yu - Front-End UX Nov 29 '12 at 0:07
  • My concern is that I heard USB 2.0 can only take certain amounts of data and more than 2 webcams might be too much for USB to take. – Scott Yu - Front-End UX Nov 29 '12 at 0:07

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