Sticky Question

Searching for compatible waterproof mounting box for NHD-818 bullet camera

I bought a NVR8-7400-8 with eight NHD-818 power over Ethernet cameras back in October. Does anyone know of a compatible, preferably anodized aluminium, waterproof mounting box with predrilled screw holes designed for the base of the NHD-818 camera? I tried one that was very close to compatible and met my needs (google "waspebm" if curious). The screw holes in that one were oh-so-close, but not close enough. I used my tap-and-die set, drilled and threaded two holes myself, and made that box work. But, with several more cameras left to mount, I would really rather find a good waterproof mounting box that is compatible or designed specifically for the NHD-818 camera.

So the question is, does anyone know of a good waterproof, mounting junction box compatible with the Swann NHD-818 bullet camera?

16 replies

Userlevel 2
I personally would not want a box next to each of my cameras. I have used special waterproof tape around where the cable plugs into the camera connector, doesn't really look nice, but does the job.

I personally would look for something like this, which is supplied with cheap Chinese CCTV systems on AliExpress.
Thanks for that suggestion 152bobby. A clean, no wires showing at the camera, look is what I am going for. This camera has three cables. One Ethernet with an (in my opinion) oversized female RJ45, a second wire the reset switch, and a third in case you want to power the camera with an external power source instead of POE. Having all three (approximately 12 inches in length) black wires hidden and protected from weather is the goal. Stuffing the huge female Ethernet connector and the other two cables behind the soffit or into the wall is not possible in all of the locations where I will be mounting outside my house.
Userlevel 2
Yes, I see your point. Swann should address this because I am certain they know it is not only a weatherproof issue, but also a cosmetic issue.

I have had one or two issues with cameras in the past, and it always results in the Swann on phone/on line person saying that the reset button on the cable next to the camera has to be pushed...surely they must know cameras are nearly always ladder height or more !!,

I do like Swann , but they really need to address the practical side of this and have an alternative reset option.

Give me one month at Swann R&D and I'll have all the user issues sorted...or at least Red Flagged to be sorted.
I did ask Swann support if they could point me to any known compatible solution shortly after receiving my purchase in advance of my first camera install and they claimed ignorance which I interpreted as fear of endorsement of any particular vendor's solution. I thought that perhaps I would get lucky here in the community support forums with knowledge from owners who already solved this installation issue. I cannot be the first to want this as there exist solutions for other vendor's cameras.

Every time I check the specifications of what I have found, the solution claims compatibility with specific vendors' cameras (absent Swann), but lack "universal" compatibility. I have found one solution that claims universal compatibility, but it really was designed for a dome camera, and not a bullet camera. While I could drill screw holes for the camera base into the provided flat surface of that plastic solution, the oversized female RJ45 on the Swann NHD-818 cannot pass through the provided wiring passthru hole in that plastic base. As I wrote in my initial post, I made that one anodized aluminium waterproof junction box solution work, but only because I had metal shop in junior high school and own a tap and die set.
Userlevel 5
Hi Gary,

Most customers aren't specific on the use of an aluminium junction box, so we point them towards a PVC junction box. You can DIY a reasonable solution with just a common drill bit if you use PVC, and that suits most customers' needs when they want to use a junction box to protect the connections.

I regret to say, we have not investigated the compatibility of aluminium camera junction boxes. I get your point with the Wasp one though, it does look very slick.
Thanks for that input MichaelC. I just purchased three more of the "wasp" boxes, but found them without that branding at a different online warehouse provider for around $11 each ( which is a third the cost of the first ones I purchased with that branding). As before, I will have to do some metal work with my tap and die set before they can be used with the Swann cameras.

I reckon that a waterproof PVC solution could suffice, too. You just have to also know all the right terminology for the associated components while searching for them. For example, who would have thought "gland" was a good keyword search descriptor for the water proof connector that would seal off the Ethernet cable connection as it enters a junction box? :)

I'm not afraid to build my own stuff to meet my requirements, but as a person looking for simplicity for a DIY home-owner installation, and given the cost of NVR and camera systems, I would hope Swann would step up and have a technical article somewhere that could lead us to compatible solutions to their products.
Please share the vendors that you have found that provide similar boxes to the "Wasp". I am looking to install dome cameras on my new home and would prefer the aluminum boxes.
The purchase I made 9 months ago ws from The product there is "H Series 1280ZI-XS Aluminium Junction Box". Note that as with the original box I bought and described, these are identical to that one, and therefore *NOT* compatible until you make them compatible using your drill and a tap-and-dia to set to thread your drilled holes. I used one of the pre-threaded holes with the Swann camera base, twisted the camera on the mounting surface to find an acceptable surface for the remaining two holes in the swann camera base, then drilled.

I never found an aluminum box like these that were 100% compatible with the swann cameras.
Hi Gary,

I am in the exact same position as you were - I have 2 NHD-818 bullet cameras I want to install at the side of the house at either end of the wall, but making 2 x 30mm holes to feed the ethernet connector through just doesn't appeal to me. I was therefore on the lookout for some nice looking, not overly expensive, and secure junction box, but have yet to come across one which I can pick up in the UK.

I couldn't find the "H Series 1280ZI-XS Aluminium Junction Box" on; perhaps they've stopped selling them? I did, however, find an "H Series 1280ZJ-XS Aluminum Junction Box for Various H Series Bullet IP Cameras" - not sure if this is the same thing?

If you have any pics and/or instructions/tutorials on how you modified the junction boxes or your installation, could you kindly share them?

Many thanks,
Hi. I checked the site again and, yes, your description appears to be of the box. I am unsure if they changed the model ('j' would be next after 'i') or if I made a typo.

I am happy to share more description and pics of what I did if I am able, but I am currently travelling and will not return home until this weekend when I can better reply. As I tried to relate above, you will need a tap and die set in order to thread the two holes you will need to drill.
Thanks Gary.

I have a tap and die set, as well as my dad's drill press, so I'm covered there.

The only problem is to source the item in the UK without paying a ridiculous amount for it. On Amazon UK, they retail at just under £16 (around $20) a piece, so buying two of these is turning out quite expensive. On the other hand, there doesn't seem to be any other just-as-good alternatives, unless anyone knows of one?
I have returned home from my travels and am posting as promised.

I grabbed one of the unopened metal boxes that I still have in reserve in my closet. For what it is worth, the external label on the cardboard box says unambiguously "Model: 1280ZJ-XS". So I cannot explain that discrepancy with the vendor's website.

In the picture that I am uploading, I removed the front cover from the metal box, and you are viewing the back of the cover that faces the box's interior. You can see the three long screws that hold the cover to the box at the 12, 4, and 8 o'clock positions in the photo. The screw HEAD that you can see at the 3 o'clock postion

holds a small safety cable that prevents you from dropping the cover while working on installation. I removed the cable from the screw for the photo.

The kit comes with three (actually four) machine screws that they expect you to use to mount the camera to the face of the cover.
If you draw a line from those three silver screws that hold the cover to the box approximately 15mm toward the center of the circular cover, you will see the back of a factory pre-formed screw holder for one of the provided machine screws. We would love to be able to use those three pre-formed screw holders to mount the Swann NHD-818 camera base to the cover. But, the holes in the NHD-818 base do not align with those holes.

Temporarily remove the black pre-cut foam seal at the center of the cover and feed the camera's connectors through the hole. The foam seal is easily reinstalled later.

Use one of the provided machine screws to mount the camera base on the cover in screw hole I colored green in the photo. That is the only one of the unmodified holes you will utilize.

Pivot the camera base on the cover on that one screw in the green-annotated position until the holes in the base align approximately with where I drew RED dots. You want one of the screw holes you will drill (the left red dot in the photo) to be in the flat surface area. The other position (the right-hand red dot) ended up in my case (on three different boxes) cutting partially through that raised ring, and partially through the same flat ring area. This did not matter since I was tapping with threads anyway. Align, check, and triple check your marks you will make through the camera base for where you want to drill and then use a small drill to drill your first hole. Make sure your drill is small enough to leave sufficient metal for creating the threads with your tap. This metal is a bit soft. I don't recall the tap bit size or thread count of the tap that I used, but it was as close (or exactly the same) as the machine screws provided with the box as I could get it. Thread your first hole using machine oil for lubricant as usual. Then screw in a machine screw for the first time to check your work.

Remount the camera base using the original (green dot) factory screw holder, and your newly threaded first hole. Check, and triple check the location where you will drill your second hole. Remove the camera base. Then drill,and thread that second hole with your tap.

Thread the camera wires through the cover face again, reinstall the black foam around the wires into the cover, and then install all three screws through the camefor the (hopefully) last time.

Wow, that's such a detailed write-up, thanks ever so much Gary.

Ok, so here in the UK, I looked almost everywhere online for a suitable junction box that wasn't going to break the bank and one that looked good when mounted onto the wall.

As hard as it may be to believe, it's not at all easy getting hold of a suitable junction box from here at all. Several online retailers actually refused to sell me a Hikvision box, because of the "rules" Hikvision are insisting retailers follow; in that in that if you're an end-user and not a professional installer, you're not allowed to be sold one. Two of the retailers I approached even told me that if they didn't abide by this rule, they could lose their authorized reseller status, and any end-user who purchases one won't get a warranty with Hikvision!

So, looking at the WASP mounting box for reference, I came across the Dahua P134 brand of junction boxes and purchased four of them from China.

The mounting holes for these are 48mm apart, whereas the SWANN cameras are 45mm apart, so I had to discard the holes and drill new mounting holes (in red) and tap them.

I did this by creating a paper template of the drilling holes, then getting one of the plates, and securing it to a piece of wood. Using a centre punch, I marked the centre of the holes and drilled 3 x 3mm holes using a drill press straight through the plate.

After ensuring that the holes were in the correct position by attaching it to the camera, I used that first plate as a template. I got the other 3 plates and secured them onto the wood, one on top of the other, under that first plate. I drilled the holes through each of the plates and it worked out great. I then tapped 4mm holes through each of the plates and tested each of them with the camera base again.

I think if you've got quite a few to do, this is probably the best way to do them. I'll try to add a few more pics of the drilled plates, if anyone wants?
Glad you solved the problem. Your description of being unable to acquire a box in the UK easily was very interesting. Silly of them to "protect" those boxes. I also considered the Dahua box that you used when originally searching. If I recall correctly, I only went with the WASP box orginally because it had more factory pre-drilled holes and I hoped I would get lucky and one set line up. Of course they did not and I ended up drilling and tapping.
Userlevel 5
Wow, this is great information!

Very nice write-up.

I'm stickying this post so that it remains at the top. 🙂
Thanks for all of the information on trying to source mounting boxes for the SWANN cameras. I see nothing has changed in their response and this may make me select a different supplier that can provide the total solution. I can modify a mounting box, but I am going to choose to not do it and possibly take my business elsewhere. Thank you for providing the hole dimensions on the SWANN cameras.

I am looking at the NHD885MSB, NHD885MSFB and the NHD886MSD cameras.