In CCTV systems, the so-called channel-zero encoding is an option to configure the CCTV recorder to stream a video feed composed of multiple camera channels in one split-picture view.
This allows the recording system to send one frame to a remote system, rather than numerous frames of the individual channels; thereby reducing the bandwidth used/needed to transmit the feed.
In a few words, Channel-zero encoding is supported to decrease the bandwidth requirements without affecting the image quality.
After you set Channel-Zero encoding, you can view all of the channels on one screen using the CMS or the web browser. This feature comes in handy if you need to do remote troubleshooting since via channel-zero you can remotely see what’s going in on the local screen (monitor).
Dahua Channel Zero
On Dahua recorders you can enable the channel-zero encoding (called Zero-Channel) by following these steps:
Via recorder’s interface. Right Click, go to Main Menu then under the Setting click System. Go to the display option.
One of the tabs on top is “Zero-Channel”. Enable it and adjust the rest of the settings (if necessary) such as compression, resolution, frame rate, and bit rate.
Via web services. Access your Dahua security system via the web browser. Go to Setup then Display. Enable the Zero Channel. Note: on some Dahua recorders, this feature can be enabled via web browser only.
Encoding channel in Hikvision devices
On Hikvision recorders you can enable Channel-Zero encoding by following these steps:
Via recorders interface. Go to Main Menu, under Configuration enter Live View section. Select the channel-zero encoding tab. Enable it and adjust the rest of the settings (if necessary).
After setting up the Channel-Zero Encoding, you can see up to 16 channels of live video on one screen of the remote client.
Via web services. Access your system via the web browser. Go to Configuration and then Video/Audio. On top select the Channel-Zero encoding tab and enable the option.
For other manufacturers (Samsung, Bosch, Axis, etc), usually this feature is under the Display or Video settings.