Extended exposure to direct sunlight, a defective IR filter, or issues with a camera’s cut-filter can cause issues with video discoloration. The most common reports of discolouration are the presentation of:
- A pink tint or overlay to the overall camera image or around the edges of the video stream.
- Purple coloured-grass or purple hue.
- Specks of pink or purple splotches on the camera's field of view.
- Band of multi-coloured lines
The following are possible causes of discolouration and resolutions:
1. Camera settings
- Turn the camera off for 20 seconds and power it back on.
- For NVR cameras, you can power cycle it by unplugging it from the back of the NVR, then plug it back in. Or, reboot the NVR.
- Ensure that the camera settings are not modified in any way that would alter the color of the image. or adjust the OSD settings of the camera. To access the OSD menu, check the user manual of your camera or see this link: General Idea: On-screen Display (OSD) or Image Control.
For DVR cameras with OSD control
- On Live View via TV/monitor, highlight a camera.
- Right-click and choose the 4th icon from the left (PTZ).
- Login to the Main Menu with your DVR's password.
- Go to Main Menu using the arrow controls on the left.
- Highlight BUZZER and change LED to BUZZER.
- DAY-NIGHT will appear. Change mode from COLOR to SMART.
- Click on Return.
- After exiting the DAY-NIGHT menu, go straight to SAVE-EXIT
to save the settings and exit out of the OSD MENU
- Do not change the DIM and WARNING setting otherwise DAY-NIGHT mode will return to COLOR.
For DVR cameras without OSD control
- Login to Setup (Main Menu).
- Go to Display > Live.
- Click on the gear icon under Setup beside the camera you wish to configure.
- Slide Hue and Saturation to reach the desired colour.
- Click on Apply to save.
For NVR cameras with OSD control
- Go to Menu > Display > Image Control.
- Look for IR Cut Mode or Day & Night.
2. The leading cause: stuck IR cut filter
A security camera has an IR cut filter that prevents infrared light waves from reaching the lens in daylight. This helps the camera show true colours in the daytime, but at night the filter has to be removed so the camera can use its own infrared lights for night vision. When the camera changes to night mode, it makes a click sound.
- Cover the camera with your hand during the day to force the IR LED lights to turn on and off. There should be a clicking sound. If none, then the IR cut filter is most likely stuck.
- Check the temperature of the camera if the issue usually happens during low temperatures (-5F or -20C). If a camera is in a cold environment, the IR filter can freeze and not work. Each Swann camera has a different range of temperatures it can operate in.
- Check if there is any condensation behind the camera lens. This can also cause the IR cut filter to jam.
- Prolonged exposure to direct sunlight, short-range flashing bright lights, or even a laser directly hitting the camera's sensors is known to physically damage any CCTV camera. It is recommended to point the camera downward and away from the horizon or bright lights to minimize exposure (see link Camera Location Tips). We recommend reviewing footage of what light source has caused such damage. In the event, that the image sensor has been broken due to light exposure, the camera cannot be fixed and requires replacement.
- If faulty due to condensation or light exposure, call or chat Tech Support to assess the camera by submitting a video of your camera's view before and after it worked, and the location of the camera's mount/installation.
Another effect of a stuck IR cut filter is the camera will display black and white during the daytime. See Why is the Swann camera live view in black and white?