Is my Vantrue OnDash T2 defective?

moschles

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#1
I have my Vantrue OnDash T2 connected by OBD cable to the car's battery.

The settings have no effect on the behavior of the camera, and I have tried multiple combinations of settings. I know they are changing because the relevant icons appear, and change. For example the Wave Guide sensor shows a semi-circle emitting lines in the top right. When off that icon is gone. The Loop Recording shows a white arrow moving in a circle with a small orange number "3" or "5" indicating 3 min or 5 min settings. When "off" it is crossed out in red X. The audio shows a white microphone at the bottom righthand side of the screen (and so on.) When off crossed on in red X.

I stop the process of recording with the OK button. Recording stops. Then at 1 min 55 seconds, the camera begins recording again. This happens regardless of any combination of settings. This happens whether or not the car is moving stationary, off, on , and whether or not the camera face is covered with a piece of blocking cardboard. Always after 1 min 55 sec, recording begins anew, precisely at that time. Recording then never stops until I manually stop it. Recording begins whether or not I wave my fingers in front of the camera, whether or not I am moving. Even with all the sensors turned off, recording still begins. Recording begins even when the camera is covered with cardboard.

I have already contacted the manufacturer's support line. A replacement is on its way. Tech support was wonderful.

However -- this camera was a Christmas gift, and I have a lingering , nagging thought that maybe I misread something in the manual , and all of this is my fault. Is my description of the camera's behavior indicate to you a defective product? Or is this behavior by design, and I overlooked something in the user's manual?

Thank you for your help.
 

kamkar1

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#3
Yes in general a dashcam always want to record if it have power power, so if it encounter a issue or you have stopped the recording manual, after a while ( you can some times select ) it will automatic start to record again.

In general you can always select the length of the file segments, most used i think are 3 minutes, most often you can choose from 1 - 2 - 3 - 5 - 10 minute segment size.
The "reboot" timer are most often similar timings, as you know some times when something act up a reboot will fix it, so many dashcams will try this if the encounter a error that stop recording, this can either me a machine error or user "error"
Most dashcams also have a reset to default settings in the menu, this you can always use if you have gotten too far sidetracked.

In general after you have set your time / date, or just time zone if it is a camera with GPS, and things like segment size you should be good to go.
If you also want to use parking mode / have the equipment for that ( hard wire kit ) then you have a few additional settings to do in that regard.

Things like motion detect and G sensor i always leave on, cuz the camera record all the time and recycle the old footage to make room for new stuff if the memory card are full.
So for the little things i want to share on youtube i press the manual event button to save those in a read only folder / state, if it is something spectacular where i get killed or knocked out, rescuers should cut power to my car and so stop recording so unless you have a spectacular small memory card even major events should be safe.

IMO motion detect are of no use driving or parked ( too many false recordings generated when parked driving always record and so it will if motion detect are on while driving ) so that leave G sensor which i would use in parking mode, but for regular day 2 day driving i see no use for it as everything are recorded and saved for at least 4 - 8 - 16 hours depending on memory card size ( i recommend 64 Gb for a camera so that's 8 hours or footage when the card are full )

My one friend and little sister have been notified to go collect memory cards from my 8 cameras at impound if i should be in a bad place and unable to do that myself.
 

Nigel

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#4
I would try a firmware update, or maybe a downgrade in case they have made a mistake in the latest, if that doesn't sort it then it does sound like something wrong with the device.

IMO motion detect are of no use driving or parked ( too many false recordings generated when parked driving always record and so it will if motion detect are on while driving ) ...
The Vantrue T2 is about the only camera that doesn't have lots of false detections using motion detect, because it uses a radar sensor instead of analysing the image. It will only start recording if a car or person physically moves within 10 meters of the front of the camera, a tree moving in the wind has no affect.

Recording begins even when the camera is covered with cardboard.
Blocking the camera view, even with the thickest cardboard has no effect on recording, its radar can see through a few cm wood!

You really need to get out of the car and walk well away before it will definitely go to sleep. It is supposed to only see forward with the radar but it is possible for it to see people reflected in cars.
 

SawMaster

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#6
I have the N2 Pro which is different, but I could never get motion-detect to work on mine after several attempts. No real problem for me as I don't use that; I just record constantly instead (not recommended for any dashcam!). But after owning and using several other cams, I have found that the N2 Pro isn't quite as easy to set up and use as most cams are. Not too formidable, just harder for me partly because of the tiny LCD display it has, the small font used in the owner's manual, my not-so-good aging eyesight, and the small buttons :rolleyes: I'm quite happy with mine and it';s functioned perfectly for many months now otherwise.

Nextbase is developing cams with radar-based motion detect which should be interesting to watch developing, but those aren't marketed in the US. Given how poorly MD works with most cams it may be a better solution- time will tell.

Phil
 
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moschles

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#7
I have sent back the camera that exhibited this behavior, AFTER a technical support specialist from the company decided that its behavior is DEFECTIVE. (His conclusion, not mine). And this was made over the phone.

This morning I installed the replacement Vantrue OnDash T2 into my car. It is exhibiting exactly the same behavior as the "defective" one, down to the second. It always begins recording again after 1 min 55 seconds. There is no deviation. The menu settings have no effect. OBD connection or 12V connection has no effect on this behavior. Always 1 min 55 seconds, recording begins.

I do not want a product that records 12 hours of the back of my garage door every single night, every day of the week. This model is armed to the teeth with various sensors that are supposed to detect motion and then begin recording. It has a waveguide, a parking sensor, and G (vibration) sensor with various distance settings. As per the manual, when nothing is detected , recording should cease after 10 seconds. This is not happening.

What are the odds that I have been sent TWO defective products with exactly the same behavior back to back?

If this is not defective behavior, then please tell me what to change in the menus and the settings to make this product act according to its specifications. Someone with this model should be able to replicate this behavior exactly with their camera. (by setting the camera into some kind of mode or another) . It would really help me if someone could do that and tell me exactly how their settings and sensors are set up in the menus. Replicate this exact behavior where it starts recording again after 1 min 55 secs. This must be possible, becuase I have done this now with TWO different cameras.

If I am totally overlooking something in the manual, or the startup guide, or whatever else, please tell me what I am overlooking. Thank you.
 

Nigel

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#8
Can you test it in your house, powered by a USB powerbank or phone charger?

Could be there is something in your garage or car that it doesn't like... maybe you have a microwave sensor for one of your doors/lights?
 
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moschles

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#9
Nigel,
Sounds like a good plan for experiment. I will try that today, and report back here.
 
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moschles

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#10
I have performed the tests you described indoors.
Per the manual, what is supposed to happen is that after 5 minutes of no motion detection, the camera should enter into "Parking Mode" and display a (P) on the LCD panel.
After entering Parking Mode, the camera will stop recording after several more minutes of no motion detection.
While in Parking Mode and recording has ceased, the camera is now acting as a motion detector. If motion is detected, a (very bright) red light switches on on the front of the camera, and recording starts anew.
This behavior is all described in the manual.

I have now performed several indoor tests in larger rooms. The camera has not gone into "Parking Mode" a single time. I have yet to see any (P) on the LCD. Also, I never see the bright red light on the front go off indicating that motion is being detected. The camera simply records constantly with no interruption. For example, I have recorded 23 minutes of a bathtub in my bathoom that had no motion or vibration of any kind. Just a few minutes ago, I recorded over 10 minutes of an empty bedroom. I pointed the camera strategically, so that the no "nearby" objects would disturb infrared nor microwave signals.

Any other ideas?
 
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Nigel

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#11
The red light on the front should flash very briefly if it sees movement, if movement is continuous (someone walking past) then it will flicker on/off until it can't see motion any more. It is possible to turn the light off if you don't like it.

If it is on all the time then I would suspect a fault with the microwave sensor, maybe they have a bad batch?

On mine, it all just worked, although it did take me a while to see the "P" symbol and I had to upgrade the firmware before it would save settings changes from the menu. Quite a nice camera, I've not heard of a problem like this before.
 
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moschles

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#12
A firmware update has caused significant changes to the camera. I am now version VTT28J.V6

Upon power-up the camera records immediately, but the LCD panel is off.
After (something like) 8 to 10 minutes, the camera stops recording if there is no motion.
Waving arms around the camera causes a red indicator on the front to flash rapidly, and recording restarts.
Alternatively, if I tilt the camera sideways, the LCD panel display comes on. This can be done at any time.
Again after 8 to 10 minutes (possibly longer) the LCD panel briefly flashes a small orange {P} to the left side. The entire LCD panel turns white and a large bold P appears in the center of the screen. This happens in a fraction of a second.
The LCD panel shuts off and recording ceases.

Nearby motion causes flickering of a red indicator on the front, and recording restarts. During recording the red indicator is quiescent.

This behavior is to-spec, and I will test it in a car soon.

Some notes for users.

1 . The functions described above manifest after cutting the power to the camera by disconnecting the USB plug and reconnecting it back in. Changing settings or visiting menus seems to "confuse" the camera and put it into an uncooperative mood. This is okay as settings persist through power-down.
2. You have to have an amount of patience to see the camera do what is described above. It's like waiting for a pot of water to boil.
3. The sensor on the camera is extraordinarily sensitive. It can detect a person walking around behind the camera. Gesticulation of hands is detected as "motion".
4. (Description of firmware update) Format the SSD while connected to power input. Disconnect. Then connect to computer and copy the firmware update binary into the top directory. Then disconnect from computer. Then connect into power and wait for 15 min.
 

Nigel

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#13
Good to hear that it is working :)

It wont normally see behind the camera, but testing it indoors where there is a lot of metal will cause a lot of reflections. The radar can see through walls though.

Maybe you should have tried the first thing I suggested a bit sooner!
I would try a firmware update...
 

SawMaster

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#14
Glad you've got it sorted and thanks for sharing your solution and experiences here :)

Phil
 

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