Operating out of a renovated fire station in Cheney, Cascadia Video Products LLC plans to deploy a newer technology on a wider scale for closed-circuit security systems that its owners say produce high-definition images on par with Blu-ray disc viewing.
Cascadia manufactures digital video recorders for the security
industry that display and record feeds from closed-circuit security
cameras. It also sells closed-circuit security equipment—such as a
line of security cameras and accessories—wholesale to about 50
dealers across the U.S.
Additionally, Cascadia builds custom-made security systems through
those direct dealer relationships. Some users of its security
digital video recorder systems include military bases, casinos,
corporate headquarters, and schools.
"The consumer market for better pixel digital cameras is pushing the
industry toward higher resolution security systems, because people
are starting to want higher resolution images," says Colin Campbell,
who co-owns Cascadia with his wife, Kimberly.
They have taken the company through about two years of research and
development after buying out a business partner, and also while
spending about $70,000 to renovate spaces in the 12,000-square-foot
building it owns in Cheney, at 1321 Second.
Colin Campbell says the company now sets itself apart by
manufacturing what are called its super-hybrid digital video
recorders for security applications that interface with analog,
Internet protocol, and megapixel security cameras.
In the past two years, Cascadia has developed a high-definition
serial digital interface technology, known in the industry as
HD-SDI, in their recorders for use with HD-SDI megapixel cameras. He
claims the recorder and camera set-up using this newer technology is
the only such system approved by the Washington state Gaming
"We use HD-SDI up to 30 frames per second, but the HD-SDI technology
transmits between 250 and 500 times the data between the camera and
the recording device. That translates into a higher quality image,"
he says. The technology also produces clear black-and-white images
when the lights in a room are turned off.
"Most people equate it to Blu-ray quality," Campbell says. "There's
no image blur. That's why it's exciting to us. That's broadcast
quality, and the playback is the same. You can look at it and think
He adds, "That's how we were able to sell 100 (systems) without
really taking it to the market yet."
He says the company's 2011 revenue of about $1.2 million last year
was down about $300,000 from the prior year, as it built up research
and development of this newer technology for its recorder-camera
systems. However, he says Cascadia is on track for $4 million in
sales, "if not 2013, then 2014."
The company assembles its digital video recorders carrying its
Cascadia Video brand logo and calls them DVRTs, meaning digital
video recorder transmitters. Each recorder has the company's
software and video capture cards encased in a computer-type frame
that is either vertical, like a tower, or horizontal, as a rack
"Our DVRTs are famous for being user friendly," Campbell asserts.
"We have online tutorials."
The company's digital video recorders typically range from less than
$1,000 retail for analog-only interface to above $3,000 retail for
those using the HD-SDI technology, but costs can vary, Campbell
Kimberly Campbell says its digital recorders come in variations that
offer four different technology capabilities. Some are designed for
use with analog cameras only, and others can interface with analog
and Internet protocol cameras. It also offers high-definition serial
digital interface video recorders that use HD-SDI-interface cameras
only. The fourth option is a super-hybrid digital interface video
recorder that uses all those technologies together.
Cascadia doesn't manufacture security cameras, instead stocking the
products of California-based CNB Technology USA Inc.
A few examples of dealers for Cascadia's recorders and custom-build
systems include Certified Security Systems & Sound, of Spokane
Valley; CWI Security Inc., of Yakima; Photo-Scan Northwest Inc., of
Missoula, Mont.; and the Portland office of Convergent Technologies,
Some of their dealers bring their clients to Cascadia Video's
showroom, which is stocked with the latest digital, high-definition
equipment to get a first-hand look at what the company's security
systems can do.
The company currently operates with five employees, including the
owners, but Colin Campbell says he expects to hire three to five new
workers by this fall. The company also plans eventually to offer
internships to Eastern Washington University students.
At the old fire station, the Campbell's did much of the remodeling
work themselves, along with a friend who has construction
experience, to prepare new office spaces for additional employees.
The 15-year-old company moved to Cheney in 2003, after operating in
Spokane for about six years. It previously operated as AltSys LLC,
but the company changed its name around the year 2000 not long after
buying Cascadia Systems LLC, which was a small venture in Bonners
Colin Campbell says that the technology for closed-circuit security
has evolved from the use of perhaps three cameras to multiple
cameras. He says about 95 percent of the security industry market
uses analog-based systems, while about 5 percent uses Internet
protocol-based systems. He says HD-SDI systems are too new to have
developed a market share yet.
While the industry has started to move toward using Internet
protocol cameras and digital applications, that technology has some
image quality concerns, Campbell says.
He adds, "There are a lot of people out there who are applying
technology that's obsolete and they don't know it. If you saw the
HD-SDI video, you'd say it's broadcast quality. If you saw an IP
one, you'd say it's OK for Skype, but not the best application for
security. IP megapixel cameras are not approved for gaming in the
state of Washington, because they have image blur."
The DVRT's with super-hybrid and HD-SDI technology can record
clearly, even in a network system that includes several dozen
cameras, Kimberly Campbell adds.
She says a few businesses regionally that have Cascadia's products
include Ringo's Little Vegas Casino, at 11420 E. Sprague, in Spokane
Valley; and Black Pearl Restaurant & Card Room, at 2104 N. Pines, in
Spokane Valley, among others.