3 Tips for optimizing your camera system to get 90 days of retention.

Getting 90 days of retention out of your camera system.

Security and surveillance cameras capture a lot of data. Although modern camera systems can retain more footage than ever before, their storage capacity is still finite. Once the camera system’s storage device is full, it begins to overwrite the old data with new data.

Though this may not seem like much of a problem on the surface, it can cause significant issues—especially when you’re trying to query something from the past that has been overwritten. When it comes to camera retention, nothing is more frustrating than trying to pull a recording that you could’ve sworn you had, only to find out it has been deleted in order to make room for new footage.

So, it stands to reason that most facilities that utilize and rely on camera systems to protect their business and employees would want to get the most retention as possible. Though infinite retention is the dream, 90 days of retention has become the de facto gold standard.

In this post, we’ll give you three tips for optimizing your camera system to reach the gold standard of 90 days of retention:

  1. Make sure each camera view is masked correctly. Don’t try to capture every movement with every camera—that’s a surefire way to quickly fill up your camera system’s storage. Eliminating areas of movement that are not critical greatly reduces the size of your footage files. If you stop recording computer screen savers, busy traffic areas or plants that move with the HVAC system you’ll have a lot more storage space for the video you actually want to retain.

    Optimizing your camera masking can be difficult. We recommend you have professionals (like us!) take care of it to ensure it gets done correctly.

  2. Adjust the frame rate and resolution. When camera systems are installed, they are typically set to record at their maximum frame rate. Though this may not seem like a big deal, recording at a high frame rate can eat up your data storage. The human eye doesn’t really see a benefit from anything above 20 frames per second (fps). If you’re recording at a frame rate above 20 fps, you can increase your camera system’s storage simply by lowering the recording frame rate.

    Though this may sound easy, it’s not. Before you fiddle our with your camera system’s frame rate, we recommend you reach out to an experienced technician (like one of ours!).

  3. Add storage space. In 1980, a gigabyte of storage would have cost you around $437,500. Today, it costs less than $0.02. As digital data storage technology continues to improve (and costs continue to fall), camera system retention should naturally increase. However, most businesses don’t have the time or resources to upgrade to the latest camera system technology every year. Luckily, most modern security camera systems allow for data storage expansion. By adding the correct hard drive to your camera system, you extend your retention instantly.

    Don’t try to do this yourself. It should be noted that there are a variety of factors involved in expanding your camera system’s storage capacity—it should only be attempted by an experienced technician. If this sounds like something you’re interested in, please contact us.


Increasing your camera system’s retention doesn’t mean you have to buy the latest technology. By following the three steps mentioned above, you should be well on your way to achieving the gold standard of 90 days of retention.

Though the tips mentioned above are intended to help, they are not guaranteed to work. If you want to increase your camera system’s retention and improve your facility’s security, it’s best to have a professional security company (like Hunt Enterprises Inc.) help you out: