The VA-VD009, launched March 2020, is VAVA’s first rideshare camera. This camera’s cylindrical design deviates from the unique puck shaped design of VAVA’s previous dash cams.
The VA-VD009 uses an Ambarella H22A55 processor, a Sony STARVIS IMX335 CMOS sensor for the front camera and a Sony Exmor STARVIS IMX307 sensor for the interior camera. This hardware specifications are very good and the camera records at 1600p 30fps for the front camera and 1080p 30 fps for the interior camera.
Video quality for the front camera is very good during the day and good at night. The interior cabin camera performs well during the day also. During the night, the camera turns on 4 infrared lights to illuminate the cabin. The video is monochrome / black and white, and picks up detail in the cabin. Both cameras have a 155° wide angle lens that gives a fish eye view but quality is not impacted significantly.
The VA-VD009 front camera is small at 110mm x 40mm and the cylindrical form factor is discreet. The camera uses a similar cone mount as other VAVA cameras that magnetically connects to the camera. The mount uses both adhesive and suction to attach to the windshield. You can swivel the camera 360° allowing you to record interactions with police officers and the interior camera can swivel 70° to capture what is going on in the cabin.
The VA-VD009 comes with a 2″ screen, g-sensor, GPS (built into the power cable) and non-buffered parking mode. The camera comes with a separate Bluetooth button to take photos (press once) or to take videos (press and hold for 3 seconds). Unfortunately the camera uses a 320 mAh battery instead of a super capacitor making it not suitable for hot environments. VAVA does not recommend hardwiring the camera and parking mode only works using the internal battery which lasts for approximately 30 minutes.
Adjusting settings and viewing videos can be done directly on the camera using the built in buttons and screen or via WiFi with the VAVA Dash app available for Android and iOS. There are some complaints on the usability of the app, but for most people it works well.
On the positive side, the camera’s warranty can be extended to 24 months if you register online within 7 days of receiving the camera.
Note that while the camera has a large number of very good reviews on Amazon, there are numerous reports that VAVA provides a $40 Amazon Gift Card for a 5-star review as per the photo below.
The camera has just recently been launched and there haven’t been any widespread problems. However some users have reported the camera runs hot. Note the max operating temperature of 50°C is lower than many other dash cams.
Internal photos of the camera can be viewed in this PDF.
Should I Purchase?
The VAVA VA-VD009 is one of VAVA’s better dash cams and has good video quality for a rideshare camera. The specifications, overall design and 2 year warranty (when registering online) are good as well. There are a few drawbacks including no audio error notification and the use of a battery instead of a capacitor. Combined with the max operating temperature of 50° C, the camera may not be suited for hot environments or for parking mode.
The VA-VD009 is mid priced at $180 and appears to be popular on Amazon. Unfortunately the practice of giving $40 Amazon gift cards in exchange for 5 star reviews is not ethical. The reviews may not reflect actual user experience.
See what other owners have to say about the VA-VD009 on our forum.
WARNING! MAKING CHANGES TO YOUR FIRMWARE ARE PERFORMED AT YOUR OWN RISK. WE ARE NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY DAMAGE TO YOUR DASH CAM AS A RESULT OF THESE INSTRUCTIONS.
Firmware Update Instructions
- Download the ﬁrmware
- Insert the Micro SD card into a PC, then copy the ﬁrmware ﬁle into the SD card root
- Insert the card back into the Dash Cam, and power it on.
- A dialog pops up to conﬁrm Firmware Upgrade automatically. Press OK to start upgrading
- The ﬁrmware ﬁle must be copied in the SD card root directory
- Do not power off the Dash Cam during the upgrade
- Please ensure there is enough power during this process
- The Dash Cam will restart automatically after upgrading
- Do not remove the card during the upgrade
The latest firmware can be downloaded on the VAVA website or here:
The English user manual can be downloaded here.
Published: September 15, 2020