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Where should I mount my construction time-lapse camera?

Getting the greatest benefits from your TrueLook construction cameras depends on getting the right equipment in the right position on your job site. Whether you’re hoping to manage and document your project, create time-lapse views, capture live video or monitor for security, the location of your cameras is absolutely key for best results.

For this reason, TrueLook will provide an overlay of our different camera options onto your site plan. This will show you exactly what your camera can see before you make any purchases. While we do our best to remove any guesswork, you will still want to consider the following issues.

Utility poles are the most common mounting location

How many cameras? Most of our customers find that a single camera works for both project management and capturing quality time-lapses, especially if you are working on one building. However, if you need to capture views from multiple vantage points, or the job site is quite large, you may decide to go with several cameras. Developers working on subdivisions, strip malls and similar projects often place cameras at several crucial locations to capture the full story.

Which type of camera is best? TrueLook offers both a robotic pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) camera and a fixed- position camera. The PTZ camera is best suited for large job sites or situations where multiple zones need to be documented from one position. This camera can be scheduled to capture multiple time-lapse shots focusing on various sections and activities. Fixed cameras are better if you are mounting the cameras close to the site and need everything captured in one fluid shot. For single structures, the fixed camera is often the right choice.

What’s the right camera perspective? This depends on how the images will be used. For example, many customers focus their cameras at the front of the building to create a smooth time-lapse view that can be shared across digital platforms.  Others focus on a corner of the building so that they capture multiple sides of the project in one view. Make sure the camera is positioned high enough to capture the entire footprint of the structure, along with all levels or stories. Whenever possible, our experts recommend positioning cameras with the sun behind them to minimize shadows and glare. (This also provides the best lighting for daytime images.)

Easy to install

What structure should hold the camera? Whenever possible, we recommend placing your TrueLook camera outside the construction area. This prevents issues caused by changes in work activity that might otherwise require you to reposition the camera. Equipment should be close enough to avoid visual obstructions, but far enough away to give you views of the entire project for smooth time-lapse footage from the start of the project to finish.

Many TrueLook customers mount cameras on neighboring buildings or utility poles.  We offer non-penetrating roof mounts so you can securely attach the camera without having to puncture building elements. When mounting your cameras on adjoining properties, it’s important to consider issues like permitting, privacy, legal responsibility, insurance and cost. Although we can give you the benefit of our experience, all lease negotiations and contracts are solely your responsibility.

Where’s the power supply? We recommend picking a location where power already exists, or where it’s easy to run power to the equipment. If you are already adding temporary power to the job site, consider placing the supply in a location that also works to feed the camera position.

No easy spot for power? No worries. All TrueLook cameras offer solar-powered options for locations that don’t have power on site. Our solar packages come with a multi-day battery backup to ensure your cameras will function every day, whatever the weather.

Simple installation — and expert support from your TrueLook rep

Once you’ve picked the right position for your camera, installation is easy. All our cameras come pre-wired and pre-programmed with the proper mounting kits enclosed. Just follow the mounting instructions, plug into a power source and your camera will come online automatically.

We recommend you test the view and make mounting adjustments while you’re still on site. Just log onto the TrueLook website to see the live images your camera is capturing.

For more about mounting, including a brief video on installation, click here.

Remember, we’re there for you. Since every job site is unique, your TrueLook representative will meet with you before construction starts to help you work out the right plan. Our goal is to help you capture the clearest views with the level of detail that matches your objectives.