Applies to: All Reolink cameras & NVRs
When using a surveillance camera or an analog television, you would notice that normally, there are two different video system standards (PAL and NTSC).
Here are some questions you may need to take into consideration about PAL and NTSC.
- What are PAL and NTSC
- What are the Differences between PAL and NTSC
- Which One to Use
- What are the Compatibility Problems and Solutions
Note: Reolink cameras and camera systems support both PAL and NTSC standard, therefore you needn't to worry about which one to choose.
What are PAL and NTSC
PAL and NTSC are two common analog television systems and are often used in surveillance equipment.
PAL stands for Phase Alternating Line, and NTSC is short for National Television System Committee.
Another common analog television system is SECAM, French for “Sequential Color with Memory”.
Differences between PAL and NTSC
There are 2 main differences between PAL and NTSC.
1. Different resolutions and frame rates.
PAL: 720 x 576 @ 25fps
NTSC: 720 x 480 @ 30fps
PAL has a higher resolution than NTSC.
2. Different areas
PAL is used to broadcast television signals through much of Europe, Asia, Oceania, half of South America and parts of Africa.
NTSC is commonly used through North America, half of South America and parts of Asia.
In France, parts of Africa and much of Eastern Europe, SECAM is the standard format.
Which One to Use
The concern about which one to use between NTSC and PAL is less important now. Most devices can play video in both formats. PAL or NTSC cameras/receivers will work anywhere as long as they are paired with cameras/receivers which use the same format.
Some people prefer PAL over NTSC for OSD display advantages. PAL has a higher resolution and it allows sharper and clearer text display on the screen. Some would like NTSC for the slightly higher frame rate, which is helpful for smoother FPV video playback.
Compatibility Problems and Solutions
1. Compatibility Problems
What happens when a PAL device is paired with an NTSC component or vice versa? There will be some compatibility problems.
If an NTSC receiver is used to pick up PAL color transmissions (like when you connect a PAL camera to an analog NTSC monitor or NTSC DVT recording device), you might see a rolling screen or a blank screen. Or when a PAL receiver is used to pick up NTSC transmissions (like when you try to connect an NTSC camera to an analog PAL TV or DVR), you may see problems like a black and white picture, a rolling screen, a tearing screen or a blank screen.
When there is a compatible problem, you may try the methods below:
- Analog TVs can be greatly affected by PAL and NTSC and should be paired with a device that works with a similar format.
- Wireless and wired security cameras should be paired with receivers with the same format, like PAL to PAL and NTSC to NTSC.