DC and Hardwire kit - best recommendations

burnedout

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Hi,

I need the help of you seasoned DashCam-Users... Shortly after my A118 died, my old car died, too (luckily no situation I would have been in need for a DC) - 2018 sure has become an expensive year... Now, I have a new (used) car (Mazda 3); as i like the new "clean" interior, I don't want to have cables lurking around in the ****pit (Edit: the censored word describes the place pilots sits in airplanes....), thus:

I need a hardwire-kit to mount the DC directly to the fuse-box.

Requirements:
1. I'm not sure which cam to buy; the A118 would need a new battery I can't get for a reasonable priece (cheaper to buy a new one with condensator). It's probably gonna be a successor of the A118, though I'm also thinking of replacing/retrofitting the rearmirror with a cam. This decission requires more thinking.
2. Enviromental difficulties: in summer, it gets way over 35°C, in winter (for my taste) too often below -10°C. Both DC and Hardwire-Kit must be able deal with the condition inside the car
3. ...eventough Hardwire-Kits seem to work reliable, it shouldn't crash the electronics of my car (if a good one comes from aliexpress, no worries - i prefer "low priece" over "cheap", just don't want to replace the whole electronics)
4. if there are recommendations for DC:
a) i only need HD, there are privacy laws that prevent good recordings in 4k-range anyway
b) to keep the area the DC takes from the windshield small: are there recommendations for small DC or such that can be mounted on the rearmirror?
c) i often drive in twilight and night, so the cam needs to have a good quality ("usable") recording in the night (no IR or nightvision needed)

...are there any recommendations?
 
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burnedout

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Hi again,

after some research I found it's wiser to first get a DC, then to think of the hardwire-solution.

Unfortunatly, I'm currently also not sure about "medium priced models", as my old A118 wasn't half as expensive as an A119 (without S or V2 or Pro) - though I understand quality has improved - and that comes with a price...

So now, I checked out budget-cams:
Xiaomi 70mai
Yi Autocamera (the squared one)
Blueskysea B1W
And the A119.

While the B1W is my current favorite (lower video-quality would fit local privacy-laws), its size is a critical point:
I'm driving a Mazda 3 from 2014 with all kind of sensory in the upeer middle part of the windshield - there's not much space to mount the camera without it being in my direct view (...regulations prohibit that)
Also, most of the cams are rather big (visible by the driver) or have narrow view-angles...

Maybe you could help me by pointing me into the right directions?
My requirements:
- single lens
- wide viewangle (130° is too narrow, i want as much of the "side action" being recorded as possible, as most incedents involve the sides anyway)
- small built (as i mentioned: not much room on the windshield i can mount it)
- best in budget-range, max price i'd pay below 100$ (current fx-rates allow chf and $ to be interchanged ;)
(edit: i don't need wifi, parkingmode or any assistant, "keep it simple" is the motto ;)

ALSO I read some rumors one can use the Mazda-Sensors as Dashcam... I searched, but didn't find anything on that. If it's possible: where can I find more infos on that?
 

SawMaster

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In actual life, not many dashcams go much wider than 135degrees though some claim much higher numbers. Some claims are based on the lens manufacturer specs but by the time it's mounted with the sensor the edges close in. And some claims are simply lies to make you buy their cams. Often that spec will be a diagonal measurement so you get less horizontally. Of the few lenses which exceed about 140 degrees in use, you may have edge distortion. When you're looking at lower-priced cams you're not going to find decent wide-angles, but even 130 degrees does offer something to the sides which most folks can live with.

The Xiomi 70mai seems to be a good cam but some have been sent the Chinese version which I understand cannot be changed to other languages. You'll needthe English version of it. It's image quality looks better than the B1W but it's a battery cam so may not be a good choice if you live where summers are quite hot. It's also slightly cheaper. Support is variable based on the seller. The B1W is capacitor-based and does well in the heat with satisfactory images daytime and good at night. Well developed and very reliable overall, and very low power usage. Good customer support. The A119 is a very good cam in every regard with good customer support. It does seem to need the recommended PS's which supply a little more power than most others do. There is also an A118C model which is very much like you had but with capacitors which should last a whole lot longer. The Aukey brand has a couple lower-priced models which may interest you. The DR-01 has a different form-factor which might work better for you. The original Mobius is good daytime but not so good at night. Supercaps are available but you'll need to supply your own mount and PS. It can be fine-tuned in ways no other camera is capable of and it takes a little more effort to set up but it's a rock-solid performer. It's form-factor is also different and may interest you. Plus it has an accessory cable available which allows mounting the lens several inches away from the main cam body. Lots of DIY involved with that. Last here I will not recommend it, but the G1W/H is a cheap battery-equipped cam with decent reliability and decent images but build quality is variable and support poor. It's form-factor is again different and might be what you need which is the only reason I mention it. The G1W/C is very similar with capacitors.

I haven't looked into it much, but some cam CMOS modules can be repurposed and used with off-the-shelf free firmwares. I don't know if Mazda is compatible. Even if it would work I'd hesitate to lose a factory feature which would affect the car value and might not produce decent results.

I hope at least some of this information is useful to you, but not having that exact car at my disposal I can't do any real measuring etc. I also don't know the exact mounting restrictions you have. If you have specific questions about a specific cam maybe I can do more.

Phil
 

jokiin

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In actual life, not many dashcams go much wider than 135degrees though some claim much higher numbers.
you see numbers up to 170° being quoted all the time, the widest I've seen in actual use was 127° but that gave a quite distorted fish bowl looking result, most are closer to 110° to 115° the lens spec quoted is very often wildly optimistic, most often it is based on a max diagonal figure of the lens itself but not the result achieved with the particular sensor being used which is always less than that, short answer is the spec is useless, look at sample video
 
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burnedout

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Rememberd similar discussions when i bought the A118 back in the day...

But it actually does not change my requirements EXCEPT I want to add the "- capacitators prefered over batteries" as summers tend to get warmer each year (and the "in car-temps" are much higher than the outside ones)...

Eg. I compared footage from A119 and the B1W, and later has just so much more viewable angle while being still good enough for DC-use (no need for hollywood-alike quality of the videos)... Still, the B1W is almost to big to get it mounted next to the other sensors...

Any recommendations?
 

SawMaster

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The B1W has about as small a footprint for height as you'll get in this price range. If width is the main issue then Mobius will be what you want, but it has more depth front-to-back; it's even slightly thinner than the B1W amd can be had with a 'wide-angle' lens. They did make one with a lens 90 degrees to the case but I don't know if they are still in production and IIRC those were 90 degree lens only. The Aukey DR-01 is a battery cam and the other cap-equipped cams I mentioned are bigger than these.

The perfect cam has never been made and never will be- something will always be a compromise. If you cannot compromise your mounting then you'll need to compromise your budget and get a cam with a remote lens module. Or you can compromise quality and get something like this and live with all it's drawbacks. There's a ship-full of crappy cams like that which will fit your allotted space. But you can't get what you are asking for as perfectly as you want because nobody makes such a cam.

Phil
 
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burnedout

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Wow Phil - not sure if I should give you an answer... At least I have "english's my 3rd foreign language" as an appology for maybe missphrasing my querys, but I do wonder why you assume I am not ready to make compromises. No need to reply, bc frankly I don't care.

Thanks for your input for the B1W, it's duly noted. And if I should decide to buy some cheap crap (as linked later in your last post) I'll make sure to ask you first.

But you can't get what you are asking for as perfectly as you want because nobody makes such a cam.

Hence I'm asking for recommendations (but not unfounded assumptions), Sir!
So. That being said - remember "english as 3rd foreign language" if I missunderstood you.
 

SawMaster

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You did complain that the B1W was "almost too big to get it mounted next to the other sensors", and I did make specific recommendations- several of them. So to narrow this down, lets ask a simpler question: Can the B1W be mounted legally there in the middle? Nothing about whether you prefer or like that, only is it legal that way. Then we could also consider whether there is another place it could go legally instead of in the middle if that first choice doesn't work. That is what I mean by "compromise". Also one could consider whether you can slightly exceed the legal limits without too much risk, which many dashcam users in the UK and elsewhere have to do in order to use the cam they prefer. I have not seen any reports of major problems with this method, although a few of those who went far beyond the legal limits have had to move their cam or remove it when their vehicle was being officially inspected (another form of "compromise"). My point is that there is a way to get what you have said you want from a dashcam, but maybe not at the prices, sizes, locations, and quality levels you have limited us to. Which of those limits can we move around, and how far cam we move them? Which limits cannot be moved?

Also have you looked at the Mobius yet? It could well be your best choice. If it's front-to-back length can be worked around, it will have the smallest visual footprint of any cam which is likely to satisfy you with it's performance and reliability. With it's mounting sleeve it is about 40mm wide, 23mm tall, and 70mm front-to-back. You'll need more space in the back for the mini USB plug, and the mount itself can be had in several sizes and configurations. You can even create your own mount easily for it since it uses the standard 1/4-20 camera tripod thread. Some have mounted it with magnets or velcro. It uses older technology (AR0330 sensor and NT96650 processor) but is probably the smallest high-quality one-piece dashcam there is for under ~$150. It's not very good in low light (compromise strikes again!) but image quality is better than the B1W in daytime. You can set it for 720P if you desire less-sharp images. No screen, and needs a windows-based PC to interface with it when you make or change settings. There is an Android-based app available at extra cost which does the same functions. You can re-use your old A118 PS with it and still be in your original price range.

Are you willing to try to work through all this civilly or do you want to argue about irrelevant topics? I am willing to do whatever I can to help you, but I am not going to argue about anything- I have enough stress and strife in my life now without my dashcam hobby adding more.

Phil
 
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burnedout

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Are you willing to try to work through all this civilly or do you want to argue about irrelevant topics?

...a realy good question, indeed. Not sure if YOU are the right one to ask it.

Listen Phil,

I'm looking for some experiences and hints with cams (preferably those i mentioned, for the reasons i mentioned!), about "how good they realy are", "what are their REAL specs" (eg. the wide angle - I'm well aware that the tech-specs on the marketing sheets are not accurate, hence me asking here about the real features!)

Seriously, if your life is so busy right now that you can't even read questions and focus on them, you should NOT answer at all. You're stressed out, aggressive, and clearly not able to focus on the questions asked. YOU ARE NOT HELPING AT ALL.

As you're too stressed to read the posts you're answering to, I'm not going to explain WHY all of your points are irrelevant to my situation.

Thanks for destroying this thread, Phil. Be proud of yourself now.

Admins: Thread can be closed, deleted, whatever - I don't care.
 
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