Access Control Enhanced With Intercoms

How to Control Visitors

Access Control and Intercoms
Access Control and Intercoms

An access control system allows people with a credential to enter, but what happens when a visitor comes to the door?  One easy way to handle the visitor is to add an IP intercom.  An IP camera, and some additional software, can be added to provide a safe way to allow visitors to enter. This article describes how you can enhance your access control system. 

How the IP Intercom Works

An IP intercom attaches to the network and is controlled using Talkmaster software. It allows the door-control person to talk to the visitor.

The system supports multiple intercoms that can talk to one or more command centers using Talkmaster software. This software can also be used to page all the intercoms simultaneously.

Intercom Software
Intercom Software

The “call button” on the intercom is used to get the person’s attention at the control center. The control person can then talk to the person at the door, release the door, or not.  The software allows the door-keeper to open the door remotely. Since everything is attached to the network, it is easy to install and operate. The intercoms have outputs that can be connected to the access control system.

How Intercoms Integrate with Access Control Systems

There is a relay inside the IP intercom that can be used to control the electric lock. It can also be wired to the access controller. Either way, the intercom can over-ride the access control system to allow a visitor to enter.

An IP camera can be added to this system. This allows you to see the person you are talking to and check if more than one person is waiting at the door.   

IP Cameras Enhance Access Control

There are two ways to integrate the IP camera at the door. You can use the IP intercom software or video management software (VMS).

The IP camera should be positioned so that you can see who is at the door. You can use one camera to view a person’s closeup and another to see the area around the door.  

Using the Intercom with Optional Intercom Video Software

Talkmaster Enterprise software is an optional intercom software that allows you to use multiple Windows computers as control command consoles. You can add optional Focus Video software to the Talkmaster license. This software enables the operator to talk to an intercom and see the live video from IP Cameras. 

Intercom Opens the Door
Intercom Opens the Door

The benefit of using the optional Video software is that the video is displayed using the same software that controls the intercoms.

Using Video Management Software (VMS) with an Intercom

If you currently have an IP camera system with Video Management Software (VMS) or an NVR, you can use your current system to view the door. In that case, you can use VMS instead of the optional IP intercom software. 

The benefit is that you can use the same software that you use for general surveillance. The downside is that you require three software products, one for the intercom, another for access control management, and another for the IP Cameras.

Intercoms Integrate with Access Control
Intercoms Integrate with Access Control

The three different management software solutions can run on the same computer. The video software can be integrated with the access control software to make it easier to manage.

Apartment Intercoms for Access Control

An apartment house can control the entry of the tenants using an access control system. A touch-screen intercom that includes a built-in camera can be added to allow visitors to enter. 

Apartment Intercom
Apartment Intercom

Using the touch-panel intercom, the visitor can contact the tenant on their smartphone. They can talk and see the person at the door and decide about letting them in the door.  When the tenant pushes the button on their smartphone, it releases the lock on the apartment house’s front door.    

Access Control and Intercom Summary

The door access control determines who can enter your organization, when they can enter, and what doors they can use.  The credential that permits entry can be either something you carry, like a card or keyfob, your smartphone, or your biometrics, such as your fingerprint or face. An intercom can be connected to an access control system to allow visitors to enter. IP intercoms can be used by themselves or with other software applications to make it easy to control the door. IP cameras are used with the intercoms to increase security.

If you need help with your access control system integration with IP intercoms, please contact us at 800-431-1658 in the USA, 914-944-3425, everywhere else, or use our contact form.