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Odd question I know. I am considering getting a 4K Home Security Camera. I want to know how it will see my yard, so I took a photo where I will mount it using my phone. (Pixel 6a, focal 2.2 resulting image is 3024x4032) Specifically, I'm considering mounting it up very very high and want to know if I'll be able to get the detail I want, or if I should mount it 10 feet lower.)

4K resolution is apparently '3840 x 2160' so I am wondering if I scale my image to that resolution if I will have approximated a security camera.

I suppose the Security Camera will have wider field of view? Some say things like '2.8mm fixed lens with a max aperture of F2.4 and 40º-110º viewing angle' or '2.7mm ~ 13.5mm lens with a max aperture of F1.5 and 113° viewing angle'.

What would be the best way to get a sense of how my yard will look under these cameras without having to buy one and run all the cabling through the attic just to test it?

I understand this question is probably at the border of this StackExchange's acceptable questions, just hoping for some help...

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  • \$\begingroup\$ High/wide cameras are not useful for identification; they just let you know if something is happening, so the resolution doesn't matter as much as it does for eye-level cameras meant to capture faces, plates, and other details. \$\endgroup\$
    – dandavis
    Jan 22, 2023 at 5:39
  • \$\begingroup\$ @dandavis Please put your answers in the answers section, even if they're short \$\endgroup\$
    – scottbb
    Jan 23, 2023 at 19:37
  • \$\begingroup\$ @scottbb It doesn't answer the question, at all, but I do feel it's an important consideration when planning and picking, and feeds into the evaluation of the answer. \$\endgroup\$
    – dandavis
    Jan 23, 2023 at 21:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ @dandavis It is an important consideration, I agree. But even oblique answers that don't directly answer the question, but add useful context and things for the OQ to think about, can work as standalone questions. More importantly, those answers can be edited and added onto for more context, and can be voted on (which is how Stack Exchange works). \$\endgroup\$
    – scottbb
    Jan 23, 2023 at 21:06

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Your Pixel6A has an ultrawide lens that gives a 114 degree field of view and a main lens that gives a 77 degree field of view. As the number of pixels across the field is close between the cameras you should get similar resolution to a security camera with the same field of view, assuming the security camera is as good a camera as your phone. That is a big assumption because the phones have worked very hard on their cameras and the software to process the images. You can just take pictures with the phone from where you want to place the camera to assess both the field of view and the resolution. You may be disappointed because the phones have software to combine exposures to provide better low light performance. I don't know whether the security cameras do, or they just rely on high ISO which will make the images noisier.

As Tetsujin points out the security camera has a different aspect ratio than your phone. Assuming you put both the phone and camera in landscape orientation the vertical field of view of the camera is about 2/3 of the phone. You can mask off some of the phone image at the top and bottom to simulate this. About 1/6 of the frame top and bottom will be close.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ One thing, of course is that the 4k camera will have about half the vertical field of view as the phone, as the sensor is a completely different shape based on the numbers. \$\endgroup\$
    – Tetsujin
    Jan 20, 2023 at 16:49

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