Hey all- looking for a sub $100 dual camera setup (2x G1W-C?)

Fisher_White

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Hey everyone- new member here. I am looking for either a single all in one unit or two individual cameras (Want to record Front and Back) that can do the following for $100 or less in total:

-Built in LCD Screen w/ Menu
-Record 1080p (25 or 30fps is fine)
-Good daytime quality video (or better)
-Fair nighttime quality video (or better)
-G-Sensor, Loop, Auto on/off, and time/date functions
-Capacitor, not battery based (I live in Texas and park outside)
-Arm mounting system preferred (would like to be able to rotate/adjust cam)

Pretty much everything outside of that is optional. GPS and Lane Keeping would be nice, although not required (or expected at this price point). I am indifferent about pretty much everything else such as WiFi- I'm really just looking for a 'good enough' setup.

For reference- I am driving a 2005 Nissan 350z Roadster (Convertible), but plan to get a 2nd Gen (1996-2001) Ford Explorer soon that I might swap cameras into. Because of this, I feel that the second camera would probably work best if it were close to the back window of the Explorer. This would either require the housing of the second camera to be separate from the first cam (attached via a cable), or both cameras would need to be completely independent from each other.

However, it would still be nice to be able to record the inside of the car facing towards the back as well- mostly for police encounters and potential break ins. Because of this, I am also considering a '2 in 1' camera (with 2 built in cameras- one pointed out the front of the car, and the other pointing towards the back of the car, but still capturing the inside of the cabin since the second camera is built into the same case as the first and is further away from the back).

That said, although there are many different options available as described above, the G1W-C dash cams have really caught my eye- I feel that they would be good enough for my needs (especially for the price) and would work in different configurations.

I am looking for thoughts from you guys on the G1W-C, as well as any recommendations that you guys may have on other cameras that would also fit my needs.

Thanks in advance
 

SawMaster

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The G1W series cams are hit-and-miss regarding build quality and internals. To be assured of getting a good one you have to stick with recommended sellers and even then they get their share of 'dud' cams but at least they honor the warranty and have some tech support waiting if you needcit.. They also charge higher prices but it's worth it if you're the unlucky one and have problems with your cam. None of the G1w series cams has decent motion detect and G-sensor operations, those usually need to be turned off to make the cam function reliably. All the cheaper cams have this issue so it's not really a fault on this cam.

The capacitor models are a better bet now than when they first came out, and if you get a good cam you'll like it. It can still be a viable choice but there are a few other cams of this class which are equally good or perhaps better. I like the G1Wc myself, and if you are willing to buy from a Chinese 'mage-store' you can get them quite cheaply. I bought 2 of these: quite recently and mine were good cams with the better NT/Aptina chipset/CMOS and supercaps inside. They're described differently but are true G1Wc cams inside, only lacking chrome and having a slightly different case. You'll be hard pressed to find a better deal but if you have problems then good luck getting them resolved. Buying from a recommended seller is much less risk but it's your choice to make.

You'll also need SD cards and for those you definitely want to stay with the recommended ones; this cam doesn't like anything less but is pretty reliable with the good stuff. Beware fake cards, they are commonplace. I've been lucky so far buying these from the 'mega-stores' but I don't recommend that approach. 32GB will give you about 4 1/2 hours recording time and 64GB about 9. The larger card will have to be converted to FAT32 format in your computer first, and always do the final card format in the cam itself. Using 32 GB cards and the cam I linked all from 'mega-stores' will get you 2 cam setups for close to your budget. Using more reputable sellers will net you one setup. Your money, your choice, your risk level.

Phil
 
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Fisher_White

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Any idea how the G1W-C compares to the G1W-HC? I was curious about the newer design but couldn't find much info.
 

SawMaster

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The cam I linked to is listed as a G1W-Hc, and though some buttons are moved, it functions as well as my G1Wc from Spytec did. All the menu options and capabilities are there and function identically. I'd rate it as essentially the same.

Phil
 
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Fisher_White

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I see that the G1W-CB has a 120 degree field of view whereas the G1W-HC has a 140 degree field view. Wasn't sure which would best. Is it true that the larger the field of view, the less distance the camera is able to properly/clearly record?

Another thing- I think I might need to put a polarizer onto mine as I live in the sunny state of Texas. That said, it looks to me like the G1W-HC would be easier to fit a polarizer to as the shape of the lens housing is perfectly round, whereas on the G1W/G1W-C/G1W-CB there a slight 'hill' near the top of the lens housing (see pic) that might make it harder to attach a polarizer to. Has anyone had success installing a polarizer on a G1W/G1W-C/G1W-CB?

Lastly, does anyone know if there were any changes made to the mount in the G1W-HC that made it better or more stable than on the G1W/G1W-C/G1W-CB? And can either stand swivel toward the driver (would be helpful in traffic stops)?


Thanks again!

-Fisher
 

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Fisher_White

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Here are a couple pictures of the lens housing on the G1W-HC. Notice that there is no 'hill'.
 

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SawMaster

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Both mounts can swivel, the one supplied with the cam I linked is shorter and apparently sturdier, but has something of a 'ratchet' action which makes stopping in between points questionable at best. I like it better than the longer G1Wc/SpyTec mount which tended to loosen and which broke the clamping ring when tightened enough to remove all looseness. The downside of this new-to-me mount is that there's no latch on the "T" so with wear or age the cam might slip off. Many simple ways to deal with that if it becomes an issue. Upstate SC here is mighty sunny in the summer too but the old C model did OK without a CPL. This new H model seems to be the same. It would help, but IMHO if you need best clarity you need a better cam. These are essentially base models, just good ones. I haven't checked the viewing angle but it seems good enough and close to the old C model I had. Listed specs for that are rarely accurate anyway. Any lack of range due to width is going to be a question of lens quality and of it matching the CMOS well. Look at vids posted from other users and determine if you're happy with them. Once again there's not much (if any) better to be had in this price range.

The A118c may be a good alternative and the A119 seems like a good contender too. The Mini series of cams seem to have some model-specific issues but might be another alternative. The original Mobius is tiny and reliable, but screenless and takes more setting-up work plus doesn't come with the mount or a PS unless you order a kit with it. Those all have very different form factors which might be good or bad for you. There are a few others which show promise too but aren't quite as well known or are too new to be certain of. You're not going to get a perfect world on a budget, and all of these cams are a compromise in some way so it's up to you to decide what matters the most to you and to decide what you can live without to get that. The cam I linked seems to be a good one at least for now, but that could change with the next batch or if the seller does a switchola which has been known to happen. Such is the way of generic cams and mega-store sellers.

Phil
 
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Fisher_White

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Thanks for all of the input. Decided to go with a pair of G1W-HCs. They appear to be the best of the G1W series and I was able to get a good deal on GB. Will post updates once they arrive!
 
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