Powerucc PanoramaII

 Powerucc PanoramaII

The Panorama II DVR (Panorama 2) was released in early 2013.  This DVR is manufactured the Korean company Powerucc.  This camera is one of the top performing cameras in 2013.  It has excellent video quality during the day and good video quality at night.  The camera records 1080p at 30fps and comes with Wide Dynamic Range (WDR) to provide good night recording.

Overall, video quality is very good but there have been some items to be aware of.  Night videos are a little bit grainy but this allows for more details to be captured.  Also in very dark areas there appears to be a violet “fog”.  Both of these are minor and video quality is actually one of the best available in 2013.  Bitrate is a reasonable 12Mbps as well (later firmware versions have increased this bitrate upto 21Mbps, but 15Mbps appears to be the ideal balance between quality and size).  The PanoramaII uses a CSR Zoran Coach 12P ZR364242BCCG Processor and a Sony Exmor IMX122LQJ CMOS sensor.  Note that while the camera does come with parking mode, it must be activated manually via the touch screen.

The PanoramaII has a 2.7″ touch screen, G-sensor, parking mode and an external GPS is available.  An interesting feature is that you can power it from a 12V power source or 5V Micro USB.  Note that powering from 5V Micro USB will not start up the camera for automatic recording when power is supplied to this socket.  The 5V source is mainly designed when using at home to view video files on the camera or TV screen via an AV cable.  You could also record manually by pushing the record button.  Some owners have indicated that the “event” setting is too sensitive and locks too many files.

Size of the camera is reasonably small at 103 mm x 48 mm x 36mm.  Overall it is a fully featured camera, with impressive video quality selling for a reasonable price.  In fact it is one of the lowest priced dashboard cameras with a Sony Exmor CMOS sensor.

We would like to thank our member Niko, who provided  the information for this review.  You can read the original thread in our forum.Panorama2  Size

Panorama S

In early 2014, Powerucc released the Panorama S model.  This model is virtually identical to the PanoramaII but has 2 changes.

  1. Metallic ring around the lens (previously silver but not black) which allows for a CPL filter to be attached.  This is for the export market only, Korean versions do not have
  2. A blue LED in the front of the camera (can be turned off)

Both the PanoramaII and the Panorama S use the same firmware.  As of 2014, Panorama S is the model typically found for sale.

Panorama S

Panorama G

In mid 2014, the Panorama G was released with the following 3 changes:

  1. Built in GPS
  2. ImprovedCapacitive Touch Screen
  3. Standard rectangle mount clip in found in other DashCams, instead of U-Bracket  (comes with both 3M Sticky and Suction cup mounts with new 360 Degree Ball Socket Action)

Panorama G

Similar Cameras

The Chinese manufacturer, MateGo, makes some dash cameras that appear to be closely related to the Powerucc PanoramaII.  There are 2 Matego models:

Matego MG300W

The MateGo MG300W uses the same case and CSR Zoran Coach 12P ZR364242BCCG Processor.  Much of the hardware appears to be similar with the exception of CMOS sensor.  While the PanoramaII uses a Sony Exmor CMOS sensor, the MateGo uses an Omnivison sensor (likely the OV14810 or OV14825).  Note that the MateGo’s do not have WDR while the PanoramaII does.

Our member Niko, has tested both cameras and the PanoramaII has better video quality, particularly at night.  Since both cameras are priced similarly, the PanoramaII is the better choice.

Known problems

There have only been a few problems reported with this camera.

Incorrect GPS coordinates

This is no longer an issue if using firmware v1.12.02 or newer.

In some countries the GPS location is not accurate when viewed in the original Powerucc Player software.  Recent firmwares have addressed many of these GPS location issues but there still may be locations that do not show up accurately.  Using the Registrator Viewer player resolves this problem.

GPS Sets Time Incorrectly

This is no longer an issue if using firmware v1.12.02 or newer.

Some owners have indicated that the local time zone is overwritten to Korean time zone once the GPS receiver locks on.  To prevent this from occurring:

  1. Connect the GPS antenna and power cable
  2. Switch on the dash camera and wait until the GPS satellite icon become greens ( locks to satellites )
  3. Set correct local time.

After these steps, time will be set to your local region.  You can drive, switch on and off car engine and time will be correct.  However you must keep the GPS antenna plugged into the dash camera.   If you remove the GPS antenna, next time you reconnect GPS, the time will shift to the Korean time zone.

If you plan on taking the PanoramaII from your car, you should take the GPS antenna as well (still connected) to prevent the time zone from shifting.

Blurry Colors

A couple of owners have indicated color problems with their cameras as these following pictures illustrate.  While rare, the camera is defective and must be returned for a new one.

Powerucc Panorama II Color Problem 1

Powerucc Panorama II Color Problem 2

 

Mounting the Camera

Panorara II on the left and MateGo 300W on the right.

PanoramaII Mount 1

Panorara II on the right and MateGo 300W on the left.PanoramaII Mount 2

Note that the camera now comes with an Arkon suction cup mount, which is reported to be good quality.

Sample Videos

Please Select 1080p from Youtube settings at bottom right corner.

Day Video

Night Video

Comparison Video between PanoramaII, Mobius and LS300W during the day

Comparison Video between PanoramaII, Mobius and LS300W during the night

PC Player

The PC player that comes with the Powerucc PanoramaII can be downloaded here.  It is recommended to use Registrator Viewer especially if you are using this camera with GPS.

Large Capacity Cards

Note: Latest firmware versions have added native exFAT support for the Panorama.   Formatting to FAT32 in the PC is no longer required for Panorama to achieve >32GB

Many owners have reported using 64GB cards with this camera and the manufacturer claims it works with 128GB cards as well.  The trick is to format the card to Fat32 instead of exFat (note that some owners have been able to use 64GB cards formatted in exFat as well).  The SmartDisk Fat32 Formatter Utility Tool works well.

Should I Purchase?

The Powerucc Panorama II is a best buy for 2013 given its excellent video quality with some of the best low light video.  The price is reasonable and starts at $185 without GPS.  Like most high end cameras it has parking mode and g-sensor .  Also the manufacturer actively releases firmware for this camera and appears to be committed to listening to customers for improvements.  Overall, if you are looking for a high end camera, this is definitely one of the best available particularly given the price.  See our complete comparison on the dash cam comparison page.

Where to purchase for lowest price

This camera is available on eBay for approximately $185 without GPS.  Price goes up as you add more features / add-ons like GPS.

shpkorea on eBay is the official authorized seller of this camera.  They have a number of listings:

The camera is also available in the US from Pier28 on Amazon

Firmware

WARNING!  MAKING CHANGES TO YOUR FIRMWARE ARE PERFORMED AT YOUR OWN RISK.  WE ARE NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY DAMAGE TO YOUR DASH CAM AS A RESULT OF THESE INSTRUCTIONS.

Firmware Update Instructions

  1. Format SD card in your PC
  2. Download new firmware to sd card root ( do not put it inside dash cam yet ).
  3. Go to your car
  4. Connect Panorama2 IN-CAR via supplied 12v cigarette charger.  NEVER UPGRADE USING 5v miniusb port on top of dash camera as a power supply source. USE ONLY 12v socket on the side of dash cam to connect to car cigarette lighter charger.
  5. Switch on car ignition ( ACC ), – dash camera powers on, but will not be recording because there is no SD card inserted
  6. Switch off dash camera by pressing power-off button on top.  Do not switch off car ignition ( ACC )
  7. After dash camera switched off, insert memory card with new firmware on it
  8. Press and hold “menu” button
  9. When holding down “menu” button press “power-on” button on top ( still holding down “menu button” )
  10. Hold down “menu button” for 3-4 sec after Panorama2 power on and you see firmware download / upgrade “bar” activated and starts “runing”, then release “menu” button.
  11. Wait until upgrade is finished. Do not touch anything on dash camera, or do not switch off an ignition during upgrading process, – otherwise you will brick device
  12. After firmware upgrade is finished, the device screen goes “black” ( switches off).  The upgrade is complete.
  13. Now you can power on dash camera and change menu interface to English language, because after upgrade its Korean language by default.

The following video from our member niko shows how to upgrade the firmware.

Latest Firmware

The latest English firmware can be downloaded from the Powerucc site.   Note that the latest firmware has 3 versions: 12, 15 and 18 Mbps bit rate.  Most owners indicate 15Mbps is a good balance between video quality and file size.

Previous Firmware Versions

User Manual

Specifications

Powerucc Panorama II
Price$195
Read Review
ManufacturerPowerucc
CountryKorea
Specifications
ProcessorZoran Coach 12P
CMOSSony Exmor IMX122LQJ
Channels1
Screen2.7"
GPSOptional
G-Sensor
Wi-Fi
Parking ModeTurn on manually
Lock FilesAuto and Button
Video
Max Resolution1080p 30fps
Max Bitrate (Mbps)12
Video FormatMP4
CompressionH.264
Diagonal Viewing Angle154°
Recording
SD Card TypeSD
Max Size (Spec)128GB
Max Size (User)128GB
Other
Size (mm)103 x 48 x 36
MountAdhesive and Suction
Power Supply12V
Operating Temp-10˚C to 75˚C
BatteryCapacitor
Release DateMar 2013
AppsPC
Unique FeaturesBuffers video in parking mode (saves 5 seconds before impact / motion detection)
Rating
AdvantagesVideo quality
Manufacturer support
Reliable
Buffers video in parking mode
DisadvantagesParking mode is not automatic
Could be a bit smaller
Video Day
Video Night
Reliability
Size / Discreetness
Price
Available Support
Overall Rating
Final WordFor 2014, one of the best for video quality even at night. Fully featured high end camera.

Published: October 11, 2013

Last Updated: July 28, 2014