When evaluating video quality you should view recorded video data with significant motion; which will expose any weakness in the compression scheme. Codecs may perform well if there is minimal motion, as not much is being asked of the codec and processors.
A further recommendation would be if it's a DVR (As opposed to an IP camera) to record the maximum number of simultaneous channels, which may show any bottlenecking or resource sharing problem. Also, look to see what happens when you view the recorded video at full screen. Many times demonstrations are performed and you are shown a small little video window. For surveillance purposes if you are trying to identify objects or subjects for evidentially purposes they are of limited value.
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