Best Dashcam for Hot Weather (TX / AZ)

kobekickslick

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Hello folks,

Brand new to the world of dashcams courtesy of a car break in during the night.

I'm primarily looking for a dashcam which is 2 channel ( front + rear ) , offers good clarity, can take TX/AZ heat ( summers ~100+ ) and most importantly, offers great parking mode features to ensure that this doesn't happen again.

I'm not really interested in remote view since a mobile LTE connection is pretty much out of my budget right now. Wi-Fi's cool enough in case I need to download stuff off the dashcam in a pinch but I'm assuming that's going to be slow. I drive for about 30-40 minutes cumulative (10 minute short drives ) every other day if that helps.

Am looking at the whole thing ending up below 400 USD if possible. I have a vehicle with a clear front tint and a tinted rear windshield.

What I've shortlisted:

Thinkware Q800 Pro - Decided against the U1000 since 4k's gonna get fried in this weather with parking mode and the FA200 doesn't have enough clarity based on the videos.
Viofo 139 / Viofo 129 Plus Duo - The former seems to be the latest one and the latter seems to be the most bang for the buck.
SG9663DC Pro / SG9663DR - Great customer feedback and solid quality. Unsure about firmware quality ( DC seemed to have better sharpness than DR. Not sure if new FW upgrades changed anything ).

I looked at the Blackvue series but having them force you to watch ads before watching any recorded video on my friend's car taught me to stay away from them.

Please do correct me if I'm wrong, but the general consensus seems to be:
Video quality wise: Viofo > SG > Thinkware based on what I saw. I could be wrong.
Heat Resistance: SG > the rest.


In order to choose between the three, I require your assistance to figure out the following:

1. The Viofo models and SG9663DC Pro come with the LCD and processing attached to the camera. Will this cause these devices to overheat in TX weather or would they be good enough? If they are , I can eliminate SG9663DR (more wiring that I would like to avoid )

2. Within parking mode, there seems to be two lines of thought: Buffered parking based on motion detection / G-sensor or continuous recording ( low bitrate or timescale). Could anyone explain which gives better coverage? If it's the latter, do these models ( Viofo models andSGDC9663DC Pro ) come with automatic cutoff if the car battery is too low/depletes? Insuch a case, what would be the minimum amount of time the car needs to be running to keep parking mode active since the car would be parked for 23/24 hours.

3. How do either of them compare to the Thinkware Q800 Pro in terms of overall use? I've heard it's got annoying voice alerts but is it the same across all devices I've highlighted?

I'd appreciate any help that can be provided to help with the decision.

TIA!
 

jokiin

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Too many ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
the LCD screen doesn't stay on so doesn't affect the heat at all, the DR model only has the cameras in the window and the main source of heat (the processor) can be kept out of direct sun so has a heat handling advantage as a result, the hardwire kits for each (included with DR, optional on DCPRO) has user selectable voltage cutoff settings, 11.8v, 12v. 12.2v and 12.4v
 
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kobekickslick

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Hello Jokiin, thanks for the quick response!

Quick question regarding the DCPro and DR, based on all the specs I've read, DCPro and DR are basically the same camera and processor with the port connections being different (DCPro on the right and DR well......being separate unit ). Both are rated for the same temperature. So would that mean that DCPro can still operate on parking mode till 70C? Also, since the cameras are same, are the rear cameras able to handle tint well?

Just the one other question. Based on the video examples I've seen, DCPro seems just a bit sharper than the DR ( esp. apparent on night videos ) . I've heard this was going to be fixed in a new firmware update. Has this already been fixed? If yes, can you let me know which firmware version exactly addresses it? I tried finding the changelog or any firmware listings on the SGusa website but I couldn't find it anywhere.


Also, in terms of user selectable voltage cutoff settings, my apologies if this is a stupid question, but how do we determine the correct voltage cutoff for our particular vehicle? I've never had a dashcam before and I dunno if there's any calculations associated with it.
 
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kobekickslick

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My bad, I just realized that I was actually talking about the DCPro + (not the Pro version). Would that change things?
 

jokiin

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Too many ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
sorry, I should have typed DCPRO+ the DCPRO is no longer available, they're the same hardware as the DR, just different form factors, we haven't done the image adjustments on the DR yet so the DCPRO+ still has a bit of an edge right now

voltage cutoffs are personal choice I guess, I run the 12v setting in my own cars
 

lacibaci

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The problem for you will be the temperature. 100 degrees outside will quickly become 150+ inside your car.
While many here will tell you that a particular model will work fine, no manufacturer will accept half melted product for return.
My advice, put the camera in glove box when you expect to park in direct sunlight.
 

Street Guardian USA

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A big benefit of the SG9663DR is the main DVR can be put in the glovebox out of the direct sun. The two small remote cameras won’t be a problem in high heat. Just don’t out up any type of a sun shield reflector
 
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kobekickslick

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The problem for you will be the temperature. 100 degrees outside will quickly become 150+ inside your car.
While many here will tell you that a particular model will work fine, no manufacturer will accept half melted product for return.
My advice, put the camera in glove box when you expect to park in direct sunlight.
I do understand that and can attest to the 150F temps! Hence the the tint on the windows. I have measured the temperature with a temperature gun and the max temperature I saw over the summer last year was around 100-105F in the car. Is that not going to be sufficient?


A big benefit of the SG9663DR is the main DVR can be put in the glovebox out of the direct sun. The two small remote cameras won’t be a problem in high heat. Just don’t out up any type of a sun shield reflector
That does make sense. I was wondering if I could get away with using the DCPro+ if the DVR on that model could handle it with the tint on the windows. Seems like the consensus is that DR is the much better idea if I plan on using it long term. Would have to wait for the update to get the video quality boost but that's a WIP already!
 
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kobekickslick

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A big benefit of the SG9663DR is the main DVR can be put in the glovebox out of the direct sun. The two small remote cameras won’t be a problem in high heat. Just don’t out up any type of a sun shield reflector
One last question. What sort of MicroSD cars are provided on the website? I have a 256GB max endurance card from Sandisk (Class 10). Can I just swap out the 32GB and use it or is the make of the SD card proprietary?
 
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kobekickslick

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sorry, I should have typed DCPRO+ the DCPRO is no longer available, they're the same hardware as the DR, just different form factors, we haven't done the image adjustments on the DR yet so the DCPRO+ still has a bit of an edge right now

voltage cutoffs are personal choice I guess, I run the 12v setting in my own cars
Thanks for the clarification! I'll take a look at the models then!
 

jokiin

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Too many ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
One last question. What sort of MicroSD cars are provided on the website? I have a 256GB max endurance card from Sandisk (Class 10). Can I just swap out the 32GB and use it or is the make of the SD card proprietary?
Max Endurance cards are a good choice
 

Street Guardian USA

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One last question. What sort of MicroSD cars are provided on the website? I have a 256GB max endurance card from Sandisk (Class 10). Can I just swap out the 32GB and use it or is the make of the SD card proprietary?

Sandisk High Endurance U3 are bundled 32GB-256GB

Yes you can buy the 32GB bundle or I can send you an unadvertised link to buy it with no card but you’ll only save $5 below the 32GB bundle price.
 

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10 years, many dashcams
Do not sandwich your dashcam between the windscreen and one of those sun block contraptions to put in the windscreen, that is just dashcam murder on a whole new scale.
I am a sucker for the remote camera solution, IMO the best thing to hit dashcams in 2020, even if installing a system like that is a bit extra work, then its just a bit, and no problem when you have installed camera after camera in your car the past 10 years.
 
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