Video Surveillance a Star Attraction at Hollywood Hotel

May 26, 2016

Based in the epicenter of a thriving Los Angeles tourist attraction, the Sunset Plaza Hotel employs a robust video surveillance solution to secure a lively location with round-the-clock activity.


Los Angeles’ Sunset Strip is known worldwide for being the home of some of Hollywood’s most famous entertainment venues. The nightclub Whisky A Go-Go once hosted Led Zeppelin and The Doors; the Comedy Store has showcased a diverse array of comics from Johnny Carson to Chris Rock. The Sunset Strip is renowned for its energetic nightlife – a place where the young and hopeful have been flocking to see and be seen for nearly a century.

Just down the boulevard from the Chateau Marmont lies a hotel that is lesser known than its legendary neighbor but just as focused on providing a classic and comfortable Hollywood experience for its guests. The Sunset Plaza Hotel, part of the Best Western Plus family of hotels, is located amidst the hustle and bustle of the Strip but offers a quaint European style reminiscent of an Italian villa. Some of the amenities it provides to its guests are less noticeable than the cozy suites and the heated swimming pool: the hotel is committed to using cutting edge video surveillance to the benefit of their guests and employees.

Requirement: High-Performing IP Surveillance That’s Easy to Use

When planning to upgrade their video surveillance system from analog to IP, the Sunset Plaza Hotel needed something that allowed for a lot of coverage in various environments around the premises, cameras that could supply high-quality images, and an interface that was easy for employees to learn.

“We wanted something that we could use from an operational standpoint and from a safety standpoint,” explained Brenda Elias, operations manager for the Sunset Plaza.

Constantin Paul Bunea, the founder and CEO of Darkcad Tec, had been serving as systems integrator for the hotel for ten years. He knew it was time for the hotel to upgrade from analog to IP, and he knew that Hikvision was the brand that would meet their needs.

“I selected Hikvision cameras because the quality is very high, third party integration is easy, and the company provides excellent technical support.” Mr. Bunea stated.

Solution: Comprehensive Coverage, Comprehensive Benefits

Darkcad Tec installed over twenty 3 MP cameras from Hikvision throughout the hotel, covering interiors such as hallways, conference rooms, and meeting rooms, and exterior locations as well. The DS-2CD2232-I5 bullet offers digital WDR and a weatherproof rating of IP66, ideal for the outdoor swimming pool. The DS-2CD2332-I turret, with Hikvision’s patented EXIR infrared technology, is being used in the parking garage, with image quality clear enough to make out license plates. A 3 MP fisheye camera, the DS-2CD6332FWD-I, allows for broad coverage near the main entrance. The DS-2CD2132F-I dome provides HD real-time video and has a vandal resistant rating of IK10, perfect for identifying visitors at hotel entrances. The hotel also plans to use the substream of these cameras for future access control integration.

Two DS-9632NI-I8 recorders round out the solution, providing an intuitive, user-friendly interface that makes footage easily retrievable.

“In some instances, we needed to address customer concerns by reviewing surveillance footage, so footage that was easy to retrieve was essential,” commented Ms. Elias.

Results: Superior Image Quality and Improved Efficiency

Whether retrieving recorded footage or viewing what’s happening in real time, the surveillance system is boosting the efficiency of the Sunset Plaza team from an operational standpoint. In situations where live viewing is crucial, the cameras allow the hotel staff to easily keep tabs on the entire premises. Cameras positioned at building entrances give the staff more control over who comes and goes. The new surveillance cameras also offer a significant improvement in image quality compared to what was in use before. Staff communicating with each other about what they see on camera can now describe in detail what people are wearing, helping them assist their guests.

“Before we weren’t able to clearly see what was happening,” Ms. Elias noted, “but now the images are very good at night and during the day.”

Looking to the Future

Future additions to the video surveillance system at the Sunset Plaza will assist the hotel with public relations.

“We intend to use Value Series PTZ cameras mounted to the exterior of the building to display live feeds of Sunset Boulevard on the hotel website,” remarked Mr. Bunea.

The superior image quality from Hikvision cameras would give potential visitors a feel for the energy and excitement of the Sunset Strip, helping clinch their decision to book a room at the Sunset Plaza.


The diversity of settings within the hotel and need for a wide area of coverage called for a high-performing group of cameras at an affordable price, but the hotel’s analog system wasn’t up to par. Hikvision cameras not only boast excellent image quality, but have also given the hotel staff the eyes they need to survey the hotel grounds 24 hours a day. Hikvision DVRs make it easy to review footage as needed. The user-friendly cameras and recorders are easily networked with other devices, allowing for future upgrades to access control.

The Sunset Plaza’s new video surveillance system helps ensure the safety of hotel guests and employees, contributing to a fabulous experience on the famous Sunset Strip.

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IMPORTANT! This model requires non-standard firmware. Do Not Install standard firmware (e.g. v.4.1.xx) on this model. Doing so will permanently damage your system. You must use custom firmware v.4.1.25 from the iDS-9632NXI-I8/16S product page.

View the most updated version of this document here:


The I-series NVR (such as the DS-7716NI-I4) is one of Hikvision's most popular and feature-rich recorders. As such, many firmware revisions have been introduced over the years to continually ensure the product is compatible with the newest technology available. Due to the many revisions, we recommend that the user closely follows the instructions below in order to reduce the amount of time spent as well as the chance of failure.


Database Optimization and Repair

As more affordable IP cameras are introduced over time with greater video resolution and data sizes, more efficient database management also becomes necessary. The introduction of firmware v4.0 brought about a new database architecture in order to be futureproof.


After upgrading to v4.X, the recorder database will need to be converted and optimized. If you are experiencing issues where playback is expected but not found, make sure "Database Repair" is performed as indicated in the procedures and scenarios below.


Preparing the Upgrade

Before proceeding with upgrade, it is recommended that NVR configuration file is exported from the NVR over the network or on to a local USB drive.


Upgrading from v3.4.92 build 170518 or Older

  1. All recorders must reach v3.4.92 before proceeding further. Upgrading from versions before v3.4.92 directly to any version of v4.X will likely cause the recorder to fail.
  2. If the recorder is already at v3.4.92, a full factory default is highly recommended before upgrading to any version of v4.X. There is a high chance of unit failure (requiring RMA) if the unit is not defaulted before upgrade.
  3. After reaching v3.4.92 and performing a full factory default, an upgrade directly to v4.50.00 is acceptable.
  4. After the upgrade is completed and the recorder is reprogrammed, it may be beneficial to perform a Database Repair. For details, refer to the section "Database Optimization and Repair" above.
  5. To verify repair progress, you may refer to the HDD status, or search the recorder log for repair started and stopped entries. Note that while the HDD is repairing, new recordings are still being made, but some existing recordings may not be searchable until repair is complete.
  6. If you continue to observe playback issues after database repair, ensure there are no power, network, or motion detection issues. Should the problem persist, contact technical support.


Upgrading from Any v4.X Build to v4.50.00.

  1. Any v4.X build can be upgraded directly to v4.50.00.
  2. Export configuration is highly recommended before performing the upgrade.
  3. If upgrading from any v4.X version that was not v4.22.005, a Database Repair is recommended. Refer to Step 4 and onwards in the previous section.



Downgrading is not recommended. Due to new features and parameters constantly being added, downgrading may cause the NVR to factory default itself or require a manual default to operate properly.

View the most updated version of this document here:
K-Series DVR upgrade instruction
The Turbo 4 Hybrid DVR K series has multiple models and across different platform and chipset. It also has similar firmware development of other recording product line; DVR K series has also introduced the GUI4.0 to ensure the series to be compatible to the newest technology available. The new database architecture is also brought into the DVR firmware v4.0 to be future proof and for better recording search experience. 

Database Optimization and Repair

As more affordable cameras introduced over time with greater video resolution and data sizes, more efficient database management also becomes necessary. The introduction of firmware v4.0 brought about a new database architecture in order to be futureproof.
After upgrading to v4.X, the recorder database will need to be converted and optimize. If you are experiencing issues, where playback is expected but not found, please make sure to perform "Database Rebuild" as indicated in the procedures and scenarios below.

Preparing the Upgrade

Before proceeding with upgrade, it is recommend exporting DVR configuration file from the DVR over the network or on to a local USB drive.


Action after firmware upgraded 

1. Upgrade the DVR according to the chart above. 

2. Reconfirming Channel's Recording Schedule 

    - Confirm channel's recording schedule is enable. 

    - Check if the channel is on correct recording schedule.

3. Double Check Storage Setting

    - Make sure all channel are assigned to record on its HDD group when the Storage setting is under Group Mode. 

4. Perform Database Rebuild locally. 

    • Some version above support Database Rebuild via web access - K51 and K72

    • Perform Database Rebuild regardless if system is having any database issue symptom. 

    • Database Rebuild process is average ~30 to 60min per TB. The process may still varies depends recording data.

    • After Database Rebuild - Check log to confirm Database Rebuild has went thru properly. 

    • If Database Rebuild Started and Stopped log has been log only within few minutes. Database rebuild may not has been completed properly. It is strongly recommend performing the Database Rebuild again.

    • To check log > System > Log > Information > Database Rebuild Started and Stopped.

    • If the log option is not available - access system via SSH can also obtain similar result.

5. Recording Data is still missing after database rebuild process. 

If the data has not been recorded or has been overwritten, Database rebuild process is not able retrieve those lost data. Have the system upgraded to the latest available firmware version above to prevent any future data lost is strongly recommended for all application.





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