System usage when increasing number of cameras
  • I currently have a 4-camera licence, SS system usage has never been a problem for me, it currently is running about 12%CPU and 132MB RAM (only 3 cameras are currently connected). I wish to increase the number of cameras to 6 or possibly 7.

    I intend to replace my existing cameras for ones with much higher resolution - from 720p currently to 2560 x 1440p.

    Before I go all out and buy more cameras, will I see a massive increase in system usage from 3 to 6 cameras, given that it is currently minimal? I do have one of the new cameras currently connected and it didn't seem to make any real difference over the one that it replaced.

    My Mac is a Late 2013 2.7ghz i5 with 8GB Ram.

    Also, I currently have my desktop clear and run the camera group window on a second display, will it be more efficient to run all the cameras on the same second display or could I split them into two groups and have them on second and third screens - I hope that makes sense! I would prefer to have them separate as I don't want the individual windows to be too small.
  • Your new cameras are much higher resolution than your old cameras (3.5x the resolution), so yes you should expect much higher CPU usage when you move over to 6 of the new cameras, vs. 3 of the old ones. How much is difficult to say, but a good rule of thumb is to expect the same CPU increase as the increase in resolution (assuming the frame rate remains the same). You can mitigate this by reducing the cameras' frame rates a little if you think you need to.

    However, note that your Mac should be able to process one of the camera's streams in hardware, so at least one camera should have very low CPU usage.

    So with 6 cameras at the new resolution, I expect that you will see higher than 50% overall CPU usage, but I think the Mac will still be able to comfortably cope with the load.

    Display to the screen doesn't normally use much CPU, but this depends on many factors (the GPU type and amount of VRAM, and the resolution and frame rate of the cameras) so it's difficult to predict. However any of the configurations you describe should be similar in terms of their CPU usage.

    Please report back and let us know your experiences, as it would be useful to get real-world experimental results for all of this!
  • Thanks very much for the quick reply, I will certainly post my progress, will get the cameras gradually so I can see how it goes without wasting any money.

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