If you’re connecting an NVR (or DVR) camera system to a TV/monitor and you see an error that says “Output Video Failed”, it means that the recorder and the monitor are not able to match their video output format.
Normally, the correct video standard is auto-detected by the recorder, but in some, the user may need to manually adjust the settings.
The issue usually shows in certain monitors that may be old or run on problematic firmware, it may even be caused by a problem with the DVR or NVR.
There are two ways how this output video error may be displayed. In most cases, when you hook up the recorder to a monitor (using an HDMI cable), you may get a black screen on the monitor with a message on the screen that says “Video Output Failed”, or “Video Output Error”. In some cases, the message may disappear quickly and all you see is a black screen.
In other scenarios, you may see the recorder’s screen (camera, main menu, etc), but the connection will go in and out randomly, with the screen becoming black, and if you go to the Notifications tab, you may see an error listed there noting the output error.
How to Fix Video Output Error
The first fix consists of changing the Monitor Standard from PAL to NTSC. While not all NVRs or DVRs show this option, you need to check it out and if it’s there then you switch it.
Open up the Main Menu on your recorder, then navigate to the Monitor menu. On the right side, you should see a few settings, note the field that reads Monitor Standard.
If it’s set to PAL, click the drop-down allow and select the NTSC or vice versa. Make sure to Apply and Save the settings. Once you do so, the monitor will temporarily black out and come back to the correct video format.
PAL stands for Phase Alternating Line and is the standard video broadcast format in Europe, Australia, and most of Asia. NTSC, named for the National Television System Committee is the standard broadcast format for the United States.
Most of the recorders will auto-adjust the video output settings, but some won’t, hence you need to switch it manually.
Note: If you can’t see the recorder’s screen on the TV, you can’t do the adjustments directly from the recorder. In this case, you need to access the recorder via a laptop/computer using the web browser and adjust the settings that way.
Additionally, you may connect the recorder to another monitor that works with it, modify the parameters (PAL to NTSC) and then reconnect it to the other monitor.
Modify the resolution
Another method you can use is to modify the output resolution on the recorder and see which one works with your monitor. You need to go to Output settings, and from the drop-down list choose another resolution.
Click save, the monitor will temporarily black out and then come back online, check if the picture looks correct. If not, you can try another resolution, and so on.
The above screenshot shows the settings for an OEM recorder, but the logic and steps are the same regardless of the brand name. Simply fund the Output tab and switch the resolution options one by one until you get a hit.
If you can’t see the options on the monitor (since it’s not working), you need to access the unit via the web browser and modify the settings from there.
Additionally, you may try to play with the resolution on the monitor’s side. There are a few ways to do this. If it’s a TV, you may use the remote control to go to the settings and set the unit on auto detection mode and see if anything is detected from the recorder.
Also, you may manually downgrade the TV’s resolution from, let’s 4K to 1080p, or 720p, and so on, until you get a picture.
If you’re using a classic monitor, go through all the available resolutions using the buttons on the side of the monitor.
Basically, all you’re doing is trying to match the current resolution of the recorder with that of the monitor. If they match, you’ll get a picture.
Update the firmware on the recorder
As we mentioned earlier, this issue may show up on old monitors, or old recorders with outdated firmware. You may fix this problem, by updating the recorder to the latest firmware.
Contact Hikvision USA or your local supplier/dealer and ask them for the right firmware. Update it using a USB stick, or via web browser, the unit will reboot, and then you can reconnect again to the monitor and see if you get any pictures.
This guide is geared toward Hikvision logon and OEM devices, but you could be experiencing a video standard mismatch alarm on a wide variety of recorders, such as Lorex, Annke, Swann, Interlogix, Hikvision, Zmodo, and other models. The logic and the steps are the same.