Blackvue DRGW650-1CH Video Review

USDashCamera

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Hey guys, I have been using this cam for about 3 weeks now. Off the bat I should say I am a fan of blackvue cams so I am likely biased but I will explain my reasons.

The cam definitely does not have the best video quality out there. it has less than 9 mbps and for a single channel camera that is disappointing. I was hoping they would bump it up especially since it is the same hardware supposedly as the 2ch version but only one channel.

Overall though I still to this day, love the form factor more than any other non-remote lens dashcam, and still think blackvue has the best parking mode, and the built in wifi is a key feature, while the built in GPS is a plus as I rarely use external gps if that is an optional feature. I want everything built into one sleek package, and that's what blackvue is good at.

Obviously the con will be video quality as usual. I somehow missed that you can bump up the quality a bit from standard, but its still not near other cheaper cams. I think blackvue needs to step up their 1080p cams to 12mbps minimum, or get with the rest of the industry at 15mbps.

Overall, I like the camera because of all of its other features, but this is, as usual with blackvue, not the camera you want if you want the best video quality out there.

 

Ralph2

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I too have had my camera for just over 3 weeks.. and would say that I have far more disappointments than you. The "features" you speak of.. WiFi.. virtually useless, yes, you can watch "one" clip at a time, but as they are not identified by time you take your chances as to the clip you want. And yes you can see in real time (well a few seconds later) the video on your smart phone or tablet. But, to see all the information, speed, GPS data (including the map of where you were) requires taking the micro chip out and using the included adapter insert into your USB port of computer. A WiFi connection is not available, even though your laptop can "see" the BlackVue. Yes.. BlackVue provides a PC program that allows watching on the PC.. but it pales in comparison to other PC viewers. Yes.. it has a parking mode.. that is virtually useless as the sensitivity is such that a blade of grass or a leaf blowing in the wind will give you a 1 minute clip.. in short it records continuously while in parking mode. Yes.. you can turn the sensitivity to such a point that it does not trigger on movement.. and records only bumps.. but that is not my idea of a good parking mode.

The form factor is good, reasonably discreet. The Power Magic Pro included with mine works.. I guess.. by providing power all the time and thus allowing the parking mode feature. But, because of the limitations of the parking mode I find I leave my PMP off most of the time and have the camera only powered while driving.

I would be a lot happier with my purchase if BlackVue had the expertise to program their PC viewer to allow my laptop to access the files on the camera via WiFi.. this was a major factor in my purchase that totally did not live up to my expectations.
 
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USDashCamera

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Hmm I never even considered connecting a laptop/pc to the wifi. I do usually have my winbook pro in my car but I guess I have only ever really wanted to transfer files to my phone.

I tend to not even talk much about the PC software anymore because they are typically all compatible with each other, and I never use any of them. I just like watching the raw files. I rarely use GPS information. I like the wifi because I like leaving my camera up in the window and not having to take the memory card out just to transfer one file. so with the push of a button and 15-20 seconds later my phone automatically connects. I typically look at the time when something happens that I want to save so I know what time to look for in the file system on the app.

I personally use the motion detection on and while at first I hated how it records so much motion, with a 64gb card in my camera i get a few days worth of footage regardless.

I guess my bias is more because I have tried so many different cameras and I have not found any with really any better parking or wifi functionality. The lukas lk7950wd I tried was decent but I disliked the formfactor.

some cameras with parking mode I have tried did not have the customization options of parking mode either, they were virtually just on or off.

have you tried any in the past you preferred?

I think if had no dashcams, and could choose ONE single channel camera, I would choose either this, or the SGZC12RC. form factor and a decent parking mode are two of my most important features.
 
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fastcarguy1

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Hey guys, I have been using this cam for about 3 weeks now. Off the bat I should say I am a fan of blackvue cams so I am likely biased but I will explain my reasons.

The cam definitely does not have the best video quality out there. it has less than 9 mbps and for a single channel camera that is disappointing. I was hoping they would bump it up especially since it is the same hardware supposedly as the 2ch version but only one channel.

Overall though I still to this day, love the form factor more than any other non-remote lens dashcam, and still think blackvue has the best parking mode, and the built in wifi is a key feature, while the built in GPS is a plus as I rarely use external gps if that is an optional feature. I want everything built into one sleek package, and that's what blackvue is good at.

Obviously the con will be video quality as usual. I somehow missed that you can bump up the quality a bit from standard, but its still not near other cheaper cams. I think blackvue needs to step up their 1080p cams to 12mbps minimum, or get with the rest of the industry at 15mbps.

Overall, I like the camera because of all of its other features, but this is, as usual with blackvue, not the camera you want if you want the best video quality out there.


I agree with everything you said here. Since you are a dealer can you give Blackvue the same feedback for us? I ran my DR600 at 13.5 mbps with Axellsol's firmware and the picture quality was way better than the DR650 we have now. With the new processor the DR650 should be able to handle 13-15 mbps with no issues.
 

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Hmm I never even considered connecting a laptop/pc to the wifi. I do usually have my winbook pro in my car but I guess I have only ever really wanted to transfer files to my phone.
I like the wifi because I like leaving my camera up in the window and not having to take the memory card out just to transfer one file. so with the push of a button and 15-20 seconds later my phone automatically connects. I typically look at the time when something happens that I want to save so I know what time to look for in the file system on the app.

have you tried any in the past you preferred?
I don't have a smart phone.. but my Galaxie Tab2 will connect where I can use the "App". I have yet to figure out the filing system as to the time.. or how to save a clip.. which then turns into the problem of how to get the clip to my PC. Perhaps on a smart phone the random numbers are converted into a time and you have more options as to file manipulation??

It was my intention.. which has turned out to be impossible.. to turn on the WiFi..or leave it in Auto.. when I came home if there was something worthy of saving.. connect with my laptop..and view and or save the data. I do not understand why "this" would be unusual.. I can keep tons of video on my laptop.. the PC viewers are much superior to what you can see on the small screen of a phone.. or tablet. And removing the micro chip each day.. is not the solution.

This is my first DVR.. I wanted stealth.. the ability to move video to my PC..and the ability to use my DVR as a driveway monitor should I want to. was misled big time on 2 of my 3 criteria.
 
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USDashCamera

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I agree with everything you said here. Since you are a dealer can you give Blackvue the same feedback for us? I ran my DR600 at 13.5 mbps with Axellsol's firmware and the picture quality was way better than the DR650 we have now. With the new processor the DR650 should be able to handle 13-15 mbps with no issues.
I'm not a dealer, i do not directly talk to blackvue actually. I talk to Alex from blackboxmycar.com though who does send over my thoughts to them. I told him today they NEED 15mbps for their 1080p cams. The only reason I am more forgiving for their bitrate is so far no other korean cams have checked all the other boxes I want in a cam. which is why I now run the SG9665GC up front with my 650 2ch.
 
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USDashCamera

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I don't have a smart phone.. but my Galaxie Tab2 will connect where I can use the "App". I have yet to figure out the filing system as to the time.. or how to save a clip.. which then turns into the problem of how to get the clip to my PC. Perhaps on a smart phone the random numbers are converted into a time and you have more options as to file manipulation??

It was my intention.. which has turned out to be impossible.. to turn on the WiFi..or leave it in Auto.. when I came home if there was something worthy of saving.. connect with my laptop..and view and or save the data. I do not understand why "this" would be unusual.. I can keep tons of video on my laptop.. the PC viewers are much superior to what you can see on the small screen of a phone.. or tablet. And removing the micro chip each day.. is not the solution.

This is my first DVR.. I wanted stealth.. the ability to move video to my PC..and the ability to use my DVR as a driveway monitor should I want to. was misled big time on 2 of my 3 criteria.
well I just use my phone as a delivery service basically from my car to my pc, and then store them long term on my harddrive, but only short term on my phone. I typically do not park close enough where I could get to the wifi from inside my house. I only use the app for viewing clips for review and saving back ups. no editing or anything like that.

I see what you mean now but I don't know of anything that can connect straight to a PC like that. Pretty sure your only current options are removing the sd card, or using a wifi app to transfer files to your phone then to your pc.

as for the file naming, it goes [year][month][day]_[hour (24 hour clock)][min][sec]:

20150811_195409000_iOS.png
 

pdxa4

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Nice review, I've been pretty happy with the 650-1CH.

I also can compare it to the 650-2CH as I have a couple of them fitted to two other cars.

I found your comment interesting on the holder/mount.

I believe that they have some variation on the manufacturing of the mounts, because I tried to fit the 1CH into one of my 2CH mounts and it would not fit, and one other mount is a bit loose.

It would certainly be good for Blackvue to give more firmware support to the 1CH, it's now only at rev1.002.
 

BlackVue Australia

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Hi all,

Thank you for everyone's comments here, we relay feedback from the community directly to Pittasoft management and the CEO.

Currently they are reviewing to offer a 10Mb/s option after ours and other dealer recommendations, and once we have established the systems reliability at 10Mb/s - we can request a higher rate again.

Thank you,
 

Ralph2

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Hi all,

Thank you for everyone's comments here, we relay feedback from the community directly to Pittasoft management and the CEO.

Thank you,
Nice but... PLEASE could you also relay the desire to make the WiFi available to a PC.. OR give a statement as to why "they" are unable to code that feature in a PC program while it is obviously easy with the tablet / phone App. Throwing an adapter (micro card to USB) while nice is hardly a WiFi equivalent.
 

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I didn't see any review links for the 2 channel version, so I popped in here. I have been running the DR650GW-2ch for about two tears now and am happy with it even with some flaws. It has developed several dead pixels that can drive someone nuts. But they don't hinder the use of the camera. I have been involved in two accidents that this camera has saved me from being labeled as the one at fault. I have seen in the past people complain about the rear camera cable breaking. I haven't had any problems with it. The camera was being used in my 2011 Sonata, I transferred it to my 06 Jeep Wrangler with no issues. The rear camera is on the hatch window that moves and the cable is still doing fine. The double sided tape that came with the camera was very strong. Getting the mounts out of the Sonata was quite a task. Though the specs say 64gig max, I recently tried a Samsung 128 evo select U3 and it works like a charm. WiFi hmm, seems to be a hit miss thing. I have the app on my phone and tablet, both Galaxy. I have no problems with using the phone at all accessing the camera. Yet it keeps crashing out on my tablet. There is one thing I don't like about the camera is the card access. I feel one of these times I am going to break or bend something on the power cable. I am wondering what harm can be done if I cut the cover off and remove or replace the card while the camera is under power. After watching a lot of youtube videos on other cameras, yeah Blackvue needs to step up their game on video quality. I am hoping the 750 will be it.

Overall I love this camera

One-Six
 

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