Dashcam shutoff due to horn load

DesertBike

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An interesting issue came up when I was talking motorcycle dashcams elsewhere.

What do you do when using your horn draws so much power, that your motorcycle dashcam decides "guess the bike isn't running any more" and shuts off due to the voltage drop?

I personally don't have this problem. For reasons not related to dashcams, I installed LED headlamps in my bike last winter. That freed up enough electrical capacity that I can lay on my aftermarket horn (Stebel) as long as I like, without sending the battery into discharge (and the corresponding voltage drop). The horn is super duper loud and draws a bunch of amps, but not enough to make my Innovv K2 think it's sleepy-time.

When I was still using halogen headlamps, I could actually run out of power, even on the highway, sending the battery into discharge. I know because I have a voltage monitor LED that turns an angry red when that happens. So I had to limit myself to short blasts.

It's possible that a dashcam would shut off due to low system voltage, if one were to stay on the horn for a few seconds. As you might, if you were about to get hit by a careless driver.

Is this an actual problem? Has anyone had this happen? How did you solve it?
 

jokiin

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Too many ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
 
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DesertBike

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Put a step up/down voltage converter between your battery and camera so that the voltage to the camera is constant whatever the input!
Eg: https://www.pololu.com/product/2868
That's a good idea.

Well, except that you'd defeat the parking-mode shutoff feature of some systems. My Innovv K2's limit is 12.1V. It's intended to let the camera record while the vehicle is parked, but without draining the battery so much that the bike won't start.

It seems some dashcams have a lower or higher cutoff.

Apparently, the Vsys P6F won't shut off until 11.5V. Don't know whether it has a parking mode.
 
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Nigel

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That's a good idea.

Well, except that you'd defeat the parking-mode shutoff feature of some systems. My Innovv K2's limit is 12.6V. It's intended to let the camera record while the vehicle is parked, but without draining the battery so much that the bike won't start.

It seems some dashcams have a lower or higher cutoff.

Apparently, the Vsys P6F won't shut off until 11.5V. Don't know whether it has a parking mode.
The device I linked to has a variable low voltage cut-off, so might still work, unfortunately it shuts off instantly on low voltage rather than waiting 90 seconds to confirm low voltage like Viofo's HK3 hardwire kit.

Not sure parking mode on a motorcycle is much use, especially one that can't power a horn, the battery is never going to last long!
 
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DesertBike

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Yes - I have selectable voltage cutoff in the hardwire kit for my Viofo A129 Duo, and the flexibility is nice to have.

I don't use Parking mode on my K2, because I almost always park the bike somewhere I don't have to worry about it being messed with. Same story with my car. I briefly used a low bitrate (and therefore low-power-consumption) parking mode on both. But I quickly got tired of having hours and hours of video footage of nothing happening, or of the darkness inside my garage.
 

jokiin

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Too many ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Not sure parking mode on a motorcycle is much use, especially one that can't power a horn, the battery is never going to last long!
not something I would ever use on a bike, they don't have the reserve capacity to afford any extra parasitic power draw, as useful as an ashtray on a motorbike
 
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DesertBike

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In practice, the small overall capacity of the motorcycle battery is no big deal. As long as the dashcam has a power supply that reliably shuts off at a given battery voltage, you won't have a problem. So far that's been the case for both my Viofo A219 Duo hardwire kit, and the Innovv K2 power supply.

At worst, you're looking at fewer hours of parking-mode operation vs. a car battery, but that's just life with a smaller battery.

There is a tiny current draw for the status LED on the K2's power supply, even when it's not powering the camera system at all. It might matter if I left the bike parked for a week or more, but in that case I'd have the bike on a battery charger anyway.
 
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DesertBike

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FWIW the title topic does not seem to be a real thing.

I was having some problems with my Stebel horn, but they were fixed by cleaning it out (mostly by running some 3-in-1 oil through the compressor side).

The Innovv K2's power supply won't shut down the camera until it sees <12V for at least 10 seconds. It won't shut off the camera due to a temporary voltage dip. You would have to stay on the horn for 10 solid seconds to make the K2 shut down, which isn't very likely to happen. Can't speak to other/cheaper camera systems.
 
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