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Hikvision and Dahua are two of the biggest security camera OEMs in the world. Several US-based companies such as Lorex, Montavue, Amcrest and AvertX employ either of these two for supplying and assembling their kit.

Along with providing rebranded products to these companies, they also offer their own lineup of security cameras, storage devices, and associated software.

So in this comparison, let’s dive a bit deeper and see what sets these two apart.

Hikvision vs Dahua Overview

Hikvision and Dahua are both Chinese companies partially owned by the Chinese government. Both companies are Original Equipment Manufacturers, i.e., they build security cameras, DVRs/NVRs to sell them to other companies who specialize in video surveillance products and services.

Both OEMs manufacture nearly every device used for video surveillance, from PoE cameras, video doorbells to NVRs. Both companies have been in operation since 2001 and have thousands of employees working for them.

Dahua is more focused on catering to large-scale businesses using their broad range of products which are not just limited to video surveillance. Meanwhile, Hikvision tends to offer more consumer-friendly and SME products.

Unfortunately, since both companies are owned by China, their products are not approved by the FCC under the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). As a result, these devices cannot be installed (or utilized in any way) for US federal projects.

Year Founded
2001
2001
Customer Focus
Business Leaning
Business Leaning
Aggregate App Reviews
3.3/5
3/5
Note: PoE & Coax cameras typically require a connected NVR, DVR or surveillance software package (like Blue Iris) to gain access to desktop, mobile or browser apps along with availing of Intelligent Video Surveillance (IVS) Features. The specs below are based on integration with the manufacturers recommended NVR / DVR.

Mid-Range PoE Camera Head to Head

Key Differences

The Hikvision DS-2CD2563G0-IS is a dome-style camera with a 6MP super HD (3072x2048) resolution. Meanwhile, the Dahua N42BJ62 is a turret-style camera with a lower 4MP (2688x1520) resolution.

Both cameras have weatherproof IP ratings. The Hikvision camera has an IP66 rating, while the Dahua counterpart has a slightly better IP67 rating.

For interoperability support, both cameras work with ONVIF and RTSP-compatible devices. However, Dahua takes things to the next level by supplementing these with CGI and P2P.

Considering audio-based features: both cameras can record audio using an integrated microphone. However, the Hikvision camera has an integrated alarm and two-way communication facilities.

Case Type(s)
Dome
Turret
Price
Two Way Audio
Yes
No
Integrated Siren / Alarm
Yes
No
Resolution
6MP / Super HD: 3072x2048
4MP: 2688x1520
Image Sensor Size
1/2.9"
1/3"
Night Vision Type
Infrared
InfraredFull Color (via Low Light Sensor / Tech)
Interoperability
ONVIFRTSP
ONVIFRTSPCGIP2P
Number of Video Streams
3
2
IP Rating
IP66
IP67
Apps
AndroidiOSBrowser App
AndroidiOSBrowser App

Key Features in Common

Despite their differences, both are IP-based cameras that include PoE and DC for data transmission and power. They use infrared to combat low-light conditions and consist of an in-built microphone to record audio.

Both devices record at 30fps and process footage using True WDR.

There are several options for storage. Both offer MicroSD and NVR for local storage while also including NAS and FTP.

Camera Location
IndoorOutdoor
IndoorOutdoor
Data Type
IP
IP
Camera Wire Type
Wired Data & Power
Wired Data & Power
Power Options
PoEDC Power
PoEDC Power
Data Transmission
PoE
PoE
Integrated Microphone
Yes
Yes
Lens Type
Fixed Focus
Fixed Focus
Night Vision Functionality
Yes
Yes
Spotlight
No
No
Storage Options
microSDNVRNASFTP
microSDNVRNASFTP
Max Supported Frame Rate
30fps
30fps
WDR
True WDR
True WDR
Motorized Pan Feature
No
No
Motorized Tilt Feature
No
No
Optical Zoom Feature
No
No
Cloud Subscription
None
None

Mid-Range PTZ Head to Head

Key Differences

The Hikvision DS-2DE2A404IW-DE3 PTZ camera includes an integrated microphone, for recording audio, with a 4MP camera. (maximum resolution of 2560x1440.) The Dahua 40212TNI does not include a microphone and only uses a 2MP 1080p camera. (1920x1080)

However, its redeeming quality is the 12x optical zoom compared to the 4x offered by the Hikvision counterpart.

The Dahua camera fully embraces person, object, and face detection features, while the Hikvision camera only includes the option to detect faces.

Both cameras include MicroSD and NAS as storage options, but the Dahua 40212TNI has additional FTP support.

When it comes to night vision, Hikvision has the upper hand as it includes full-color night vision on top of the usual infrared.

Price
Integrated Microphone
Yes
No
Resolution
4MP: 2560x1440
2MP: 1080P / HD: 1920x1080
Image Sensor Size
1/3"
1/2.8"
Storage Options
microSDNAS
microSDNASFTP
Smart Motion Detection Features
Face Detection
Person DetectionFace DetectionObject Detection
Optical Zoom Magnification
4x
12x
Apps
AndroidiOSBrowser App
AndroidiOSBrowser App

Key Features in Common

Since both are PTZ cameras, they can seamlessly perform motorized panning, tilting, and optical zooming. (with varying degrees of optical zooming magnification.)

They are both rated at IP66 and support indoor and outdoor installations.

The footage is captured at 30fps and is processed using True WDR. Both cameras also include three separate streams for storage and real-time viewing.

Both devices can perform two-way communication but do not include integrated sirens as additional security measures

Case Type(s)
PTZ
PTZ
Camera Location
IndoorOutdoor
IndoorOutdoor
Data Type
IP
IP
Camera Wire Type
Wired Data & Power
Wired Data & Power
Power Options
PoEDC Power
PoEDC Power
Data Transmission
PoE
PoE
Two Way Audio
Yes
Yes
Integrated Siren / Alarm
No
No
Lens Type
Motorized
Motorized
Night Vision Functionality
Yes
Yes
Night Vision Type
InfraredFull Color (via Low Light Sensor / Tech)
InfraredFull Color (via Low Light Sensor / Tech)
Spotlight
No
No
Interoperability
ONVIFRTSPCGI
ONVIFRTSPCGI
Number of Video Streams
3
3
Max Supported Frame Rate
30fps
30fps
WDR
True WDR
True WDR
IP Rating
IP66
IP66
Motorized Pan Feature
Yes
Yes
Motorized Tilt Feature
Yes
Yes
Optical Zoom Feature
Yes
Yes
Cloud Subscription
None
None

High-End Analog Head to Head

Key Differences

The Hikvision DS-2CE56D8T-AVPIT3Z high-end analog camera has a 2MP camera with 1080p HD resolution (1920x1080.) It can only be powered using DC and is slightly more affordable than its Dahua counterpart.

The Dahua A52BMAZ has a high-resolution 5MP camera that records footage at 2880 x 1620. For power, it supports either DC or AC.

In terms of supported apps, both cameras have different options. The Hikvision camera's footage can be pulled using their Android/iOS app. On the other hand, the Dahua camera only includes a browser app for the same purpose.

Regardless, both analog cameras need to be configured with a compatible DVR for this to work.

Price
Power Options
DC Power
DC PowerAC Power
Resolution
2MP: 1080P / HD: 1920x1080
5MP: 2880x1620
Optical Zoom Feature
No
Yes
Apps
AndroidiOS
Browser App

Key Features in Common

These analog cameras support both indoor and outdoor installations thanks to their weather-proof IP67 ratings. However, you will be somewhat limited since you need to draw coaxial cables from the DVR.

Despite the difficulty during the initial setup, setting them up in outdoor environments is worth it thanks to full-color night vision and true WDR.

Case Type(s)
Dome
Dome
Camera Location
IndoorOutdoor
IndoorOutdoor
Data Type
Analog
Analog
Camera Wire Type
Wired Data & Power
Wired Data & Power
Data Transmission
Coax
Coax
Integrated Microphone
No
No
Two Way Audio
No
No
Integrated Siren / Alarm
No
No
Lens Type
Motorized
Motorized
Night Vision Functionality
Yes
Yes
Night Vision Type
InfraredFull Color (via Low Light Sensor / Tech)
InfraredFull Color (via Low Light Sensor / Tech)
Spotlight
No
No
Storage Options
DVR
DVR
Max Supported Frame Rate
30fps
30fps
WDR
True WDR
True WDR
IP Rating
IP67
IP67
Motorized Pan Feature
No
No
Motorized Tilt Feature
No
No
Cloud Subscription
None
None

Video Doorbell Head to Head

Key Differences

The Hikvision DS-HD1 is an affordable video doorbell that records video at a maximum resolution of 2048x1536. Meanwhile, the Dahua DH-DB6I is a premium alternative with a 5MP camera recording footage at 2560x1920.

The Dahua video doorbell also has a larger 1/2.7" image sensor, while the Hikvision camera has a slightly smaller 1/2.8" sensor.

The Hikvision DS-HD1 also has a couple of other improved specs, such as person detection and support for RTSP, P2P, and CGI.

The Dahua video doorbell is more closed off in the interoperability department. Instead, it transfers data to a compatible NVR which then allows for remote viewing through Dahua's DMSS app.

Price
Resolution
2K: 2048x1536
5MP: 2560x1920
Image Sensor Size
1/2.8"
1/2.7"
Interoperability
-
RTSPCGIP2P
Smart Motion Detection Features
-
Person Detection
Cloud Subscription
Optional
None
Apps
AndroidiOS
AndroidiOS

Key Features in Common

In terms of similarities, both Dahua and Hikvision video doorbells require AC for power and dual-band Wi-Fi to transmit data. Both devices support two-way communication and can also record audio.

Both cameras are weather-resistant and include IP65 ratings. Neither of these devices has in-built spotlights, but they can record night-vision footage using infrared.

They also process footage using digital WDR and allow the option for local storage using MicroSD and NVR.

Case Type(s)
Video Doorbell
Video Doorbell
Camera Location
IndoorOutdoor
IndoorOutdoor
Data Type
IP
IP
Camera Wire Type
Wireless Data & Wired Power
Wireless Data & Wired Power
Power Options
AC Power
AC Power
Data Transmission
2.4GHz WiFi5GHz WiFi
2.4GHz WiFi5GHz WiFi
Integrated Microphone
Yes
Yes
Two Way Audio
Yes
Yes
Integrated Siren / Alarm
No
No
Lens Type
Fixed Focus
Fixed Focus
Night Vision Functionality
Yes
Yes
Night Vision Type
Infrared
Infrared
Spotlight
No
No
Storage Options
microSDNVR
microSDNVR
Motion Activated Recording
Yes
Yes
Continuous Recording
Yes
Yes
WDR
Digital WDR / HDR
Digital WDR / HDR
IP Rating
IP65
IP65
Motorized Pan Feature
No
No
Motorized Tilt Feature
No
No
Optical Zoom Feature
No
No

Fisheye Head to Head

Key Differences

The Hikvision DS-2CD63C5G0E-IVS consists of a 12MP camera with a maximum resolution of 4000x3000. Meanwhile, the Dahua IPC-EBW81242N-AS-S2 utilizes a slightly lower 9MP camera with a resolution of 3000x3000.

Both of these fisheye cameras support ONVIF and RTSP. However, the Dahua camera takes it further and includes additional support for CGI and P2P.

Another aspect of Dahua going the extra mile is offering support for AC power options on top of the already existing PoE and DC options.

The Hikvision camera can detect people, vehicles, objects. On top of that, it can also perform people counting. Unfortunately, the Hikvision counterpart does not include any of these intelligent features.

Price
Power Options
PoEDC Power
PoEDC PowerAC Power
Resolution
12MP: 4000x3000
9MP: 3000x3000
Interoperability
ONVIFRTSP
ONVIFRTSPCGIP2P
Number of Video Streams
2
3
Max Supported Frame Rate
20fps
30fps
Smart Motion Detection Features
-
Person DetectionVehicle DetectionObject DetectionPeople Counting
Apps
AndroidiOSBrowser App
AndroidiOSBrowser App

Key Features in Common

Rated at IP67, both the Dahua and Hikvision fisheye cameras will have no problem resisting dust and rain from the great outdoors. However, neither of these devices includes wireless transmission technologies. Instead, they both require wired PoE connections for data transfer.

Both cameras utilize a fixed focus lens with the same image sensor size of 1/1.7”. They can process footage at 30 fps and compensate for uneven exposure using digital WDR/HDR.

For local storage, there are the usual options between MicroSD and NVR. On top of that, both devices also include support for NAS and FTP.

For audio based-features, they include a microphone and speaker setup for recording audio and performing two-way communication. There is no integrated siren.

Case Type(s)
Fisheye
Fisheye
Camera Location
IndoorOutdoor
IndoorOutdoor
Data Type
IP
IP
Camera Wire Type
Wired Data & Power
Wired Data & Power
Data Transmission
PoE
PoE
Integrated Microphone
Yes
Yes
Two Way Audio
Yes
Yes
Integrated Siren / Alarm
No
No
Image Sensor Size
1/1.7”
1/1.7”
Lens Type
Fixed Focus
Fixed Focus
Night Vision Functionality
Yes
Yes
Night Vision Type
Infrared
Infrared
Spotlight
No
No
Storage Options
microSDNVRNASFTP
microSDNVRNASFTP
WDR
Digital WDR / HDR
Digital WDR / HDR
IP Rating
IP67
IP67
Motorized Pan Feature
No
No
Motorized Tilt Feature
No
No
Optical Zoom Feature
No
No
Cloud Subscription
None
None

The Hikvision vs Dahua Verdict

This has been the comparison between Hikvision and Dahua security cameras. Both brands offer similar products with very similar specs. Therefore, picking on a clear winner can be difficult.

The Dahua lineup has better intelligent features and support for multiple interoperability protocols, but they tend to be more expensive. On the other hand, the devices on the Hikvision lineup tend to have higher resolution cameras but exclude many intelligent features and protocols.

Whatever the case may be, which brand do you think makes the best cameras? Let us know in the comments.

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