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Learn more about CVBS/AHD and NTSC/PAL

Delve into the intricacies of video signal technologies with a comprehensive exploration of CVBS/AHD and NTSC/PAL. Understanding these fundamental concepts is pivotal in navigating the world of video systems. Whether you’re a seasoned professional seeking to deepen your knowledge or a newcomer eager to grasp the essentials, this exploration will unravel the complexities of CVBS/AHD and NTSC/PAL, shedding light on their significance and applications.


CVBS (Composite Video Baseband Signal) and AHD (Analog High Definition) are two different analog video signal standards used in surveillance systems. The main difference lies in the level of video quality they offer. While CVBS provides standard video quality, AHD elevates the resolution for clearer and more detailed surveillance footage.


CVBS is a traditional analog signal that provides standard definition video, which is sufficient for basic surveillance needs.


On the other hand, AHD is a more advanced technology that offers higher resolution and better image quality, making it suitable for applications where more detailed video is crucial, such as identifying faces or license plates. 

How this Relates to Dakota Micro when selecting CVBS or AHD

CVBS is compatible with all Dakota Micro monitor versions; ensuring matching camera signals helps prevent compatibility issues. Be cautious with third-party monitors that only accept CVBS signals and verify your monitor’s capabilities. AHD will only work with monitors that are AHD. Even though our Dakota Micro monitor will display both CVBS and AHD you will have best results if you use cameras with the same signals. Since we manufacture our own cables, they will work with both formats.


NTSC (National Television System Committee) and PAL (Phase Alternating Line) are two different television broadcasting standards, primarily differing in the regions where they are predominantly used and the technical aspects of their signal. NTSC is commonly used in North America and parts of Asia, while PAL is prevalent in Europe, Australia, and some parts of Asia.

The main technical distinction between the two is the number of frames per second and how color information is transmitted. NTSC operates at 30 frames per second and uses a different color encoding system, while PAL operates at 25 frames per second with its color encoding. The result is that NTSC and PAL are not directly compatible, and devices designed for one standard may not work correctly in regions that use the other. In simple terms, NTSC and PAL are like different languages for transmitting television signals, and they are used in different parts of the world.

How this relates to Dakota Micro when selecting NTSC or PAL

Our newest monitors will display both simultaneously, but older versions do not.  Most 3rd party monitors nowadays will accept both, but some older ones only like one signal or the other, so verify before you buy.  The dead giveaway is that your image will show up black, white, and fuzzy if you have the wrong signal.