How to Connect IP Cameras to NVR

Question: How to connect IP cameras to NVR?



Security has become a very important need in homes and a key aspect of business operations. People are investing so much to ensure that their lives and properties are protected. One way to secure your premises is to install surveillance or security cameras.


There are different types of security camera systems on the market today. One of the most popular of these systems is the NVR which makes use of IP cameras. If you are new to this system, you probably have one challenge on your mind, how to connect IP cameras to NVR.

What makes NVRs superior to their counterparts and do you set them up with IP cameras? This post will answer this question so grab a seat and let’s go on this journey together.

Explaining NVRs

Before we discuss how to connect IP cameras to NVR, let’s first break down the idea of NVRs. NVR is an acronym for Network Video Recorder and it is a system that features a software application. It collects videos from all connected cameras and stores them for viewing by the user.


NVR systems record videos on designated mass storage devices like HDD or microSD cards. This system doesn’t feature any special video capture hardware, unlike its counterparts.

However, there is a dedicated device that handles the recording software. One of the main benefits of NVRs is that they record and transmit both audio and video signals on one cable. This is a chief reason why they are used on IP video surveillance systems.

An Overview of the NVR Setup

When setting up NVRs, you can use either PoE (Power over Ethernet) or non-PoE switches. The former work with PoE-compatible cameras.

In this case, users connect the cameras to the NVR via the PoE ports, as such, they don’t require individual power adapters. Non-PoE NVRs don’t have camera ports but they come with an option to scan for cameras on the same network.


You need to have certain components to configure your NVR for an IP camera when using a PoE switch. Examples of these components include an Ethernet cable, security screw, power cable, SATA cables, and power cable for HDD installation.

Usually, manufacturers offer clients technical assistance in connecting the NVR to the cameras. They also provide instruction manuals to make installation and maintenance a lot easier. With this information out of the way, let’s look at how to connect IP cameras to NVR.

How to Connect IP Cameras to NVR – With PoE Switch

As we mentioned earlier, NVRs work with either PoE or non-PoE switches. The connection processes for both are quite different. We will begin by looking at the configuration process for NVRs that work with PoE switches.

The Ethernet switches that work with IP cameras and NVR systems come in different configurations. If you are a bit conversant with the idea of NVRs, you must have heard that not all IP cameras are compatible with all NVRs.

As such, the first thing that you need to do is to ensure that your IP camera is compatible with your NVR. Don’t forget that configuring your system begins with satisfying your hardware requirements.

After getting through this stage, you should take the following steps to connect an IP camera to NVR:

Step 1: Connect your router to your NVR using an Ethernet cable.

Step 2: Make sure that your NVR is connected to the internet.

Next: Connect your IP cameras to the PoE ports on the NVR using the Ethernet cables. This same connection will provide the power your cameras need to function.

Step 4: Connect your NVR to a monitor or TV using a VGA or HDMI cable. Don’t forget to check that you are using the right input for your connection.

Once you complete these steps, you would have established a connection between the IP cameras and your NVR. The next stage is setting up the software and you can complete this by following the instructions in the manufacturer’s manual.

How to Connect IP Cameras to NVR – Without PoE Switch

Non-PoE-compatible NVRs don’t come with Ethernet ports on their back panel. As such, they make use of external PoE switches or external adapters to power connected IP cameras. Similar to connecting IP cameras with a PoE switch, this process begins with getting your hardware connections right.

The steps below will guide you through the process:

Step 1: Connect the external PoE switch to the router using an Ethernet cable. Plug the cable to the LAN port on the switch.

Step 2: Connect the router to the NVR using an Ethernet cable.

 Next: Connect all the IP cameras in your setup to the RJ45 ports on the external PoE switch using Ethernet cables. The switch supports video transmission and delivers the power the cameras need for operation.

Step 4: Connect the NVR to a monitor or TV using a VGA or HDMI cable. Ensure that you make use of the right input else the connection wouldn’t work.

Step 5: Add the IP cameras to the same network as the NVR by following the instructions in the manufacturer’s manual. After doing this, the setup should start working normally.

How to Connect IP Cameras to NVR – FAQs

So far, we have shown you how to connect IP cameras to NVR. The processes for both types of NVRs are quite easy. If you have any challenges with the configuration, they will likely be related to the frequently asked questions in this section.

Check Out the best NVR Cameras available today

Why must you connect your NVR to the Internet?

When you connect your NVR to the internet, you make it possible for the system to provide easy access to recordings remotely.

The system can now send notifications to all the required authorities. It also uploads videos to the designated cloud storage. Without an internet connection, the NVR will still record videos but they would no longer be remotely accessible.

How far should the IP cameras be from the NVR?

If you are connecting the cameras to the NVR using Ethernet cables, you shouldn’t exceed 100 meters. Beyond this, you will affect the signal quality which reduces video and audio quality or even stop the recording altogether. To overcome this challenge, you should make use of an Ethernet extender.


By now, you should know how to connect IP cameras to NVR. Do you have any questions? Kindly drop them in the comments section below.

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