Use of System
Well if you made it this far then we should tell you how the system is assembled for use. The process is actually very simple due to the equipment used.
Step 1. Unload all cables and mouse from the box.
Step 2. Plug in the monitor and power cables into the rear of the box. The mouse bluetooth USB adapter stays in the USB slot full time.
Step 3. Plug in the network cables into the box keystones. They are colour coded.
Step 4. Plug in the network cables and power extension into the table. Again they are colour coded.
Step 5. Plug in the power cable plugs (DVR, table, overhead, and monitor) into a power strip, and the strip into an outlet. (new overhead camera cable not shown)
6. Hang the overhead camera rig on the drop ceiling tee-bars and plug in the power and Cat 5.
Final Step. Switch on the power strip and see the green LED on the table light up. (AKA - And the monkey flips the switch) The 10amp power sources will power the table instantly as there are no switches in the system. We thought about this for some time with the idea of adding some cool switch to the table connection point (think fighter jet switch with cover). This would add more wiring to the already cramped area and in the end the idea was abandoned. The DVR will power up and start recording automatically. Again this is basically a home security system and is designed to auto record.
The DVR software allows for basic customization of the video capture but we left the defaults in place as they already denoted the camera number in the corner of the image. There is truely nothing to do at this point as the system is simply automatic. You may have noticed that we do not use a keyboard. The DVR has a virtual keyboard where needed which is not often.
At the end of the recording session (end of tournament) use the mouse to power down the DVR and stow all of the cables. I have not tested the system to see if the power could just be turned off to power down, but at this time its only a 10 second savings and we thought it best to follow the DVR documentation.
When its time to retrieve the files, power the DVR and plug in a USB memory stick (thumb drive). The system allows you to search by date/time and to select which camera(s) to export. Exporting can be in MPEG or AVI format.
Final comments: The combination of Amazon, Fry's Electronics, and Home Depot is a dangerous thing. :) This was a great project and we are pleased with the results.
Thank you for looking over our project.
Josh Farler Foundation