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Pick of the Camera Reviews

(Click the pictures for reviews & links) 

ACTION CAMS

Yi 2 - Best Budget 4K 

Gitup Git2 (My Pick)

Xiaomi Yi

Dazzne P2

SJCAM M10+
 
DASH-CAMS (CAR DVRs)
 
A119
DR02 D - Best Budget Dual Cam
Yi

Yi Ultra 2.7K
   
    MINI CAMERAS
Mobius (also works as a Dashcam)
Polaroid Cube+
    HELMET CAMERA
Sena Prism Tube

My favourite USB battery power Pack

This is the excellent USB power pack I use when I travel.

2 x 2.1amp outputs. 8400mAh capacity.

Two digit Led display shows battery level

 

What SD CARD should I buy?

If you want an SD Card for your camera - these are the ones I use and recommend. 

I'd strongly recommend not to buy any SD cards off ebay - I've heard about too many issues with counterfeit cards - often sold on by unwitting resellers. My inbox regularly gets messages from people who bought a £150 camera then cheaped out and bought a £3 memory card on ebay - Then when it doesn't worth they blame the camera! It doesn't make any sense. Good memory is cheaper than it's ever been - see the links above.

A lot of HD cameras will not work properly with cards larger than 32GB (cards over 32GB are usually SDXC rather than the SDHC standard used by 32GB cards. SDXC cards use the ex-FAT system rather than FAT32 - in short they are a different standard). - so don't just buy the biggest card you can afford - read the specs in the manual to see what it accepts.

UK & US LINKS & PRICES BELOW

RECOMMENDED CARDS (for action cams - see dashcams below)

CLASS 10 UHS-1 CARDS (For HD Cameras)

 

U3 CARD (For 4K cameras)

 

 

SPECIAL DASHCAM CARDS

The SD card in a dashcam is re-written over, more frequently than in other types of cameras. Some manufacturers void their guarantee if an SD card was used in a dashcam. So, no surprise, there are special High Endurance SD cards made just for dashcams...here's some.

 

VERY IMPORTANT. These links take you to the product, however Amazon have three different ways of selling. There's Amazon Direct - This means that you are only dealing with Amazon themselves, then there's other sellers that use Amazon's facilities - these show as Fulfilled By Amazon and finally there's Market Place sellers that advertise on Amazon, but operate independently.  I strongly recommend that you only use the first...the Amazon Direct - Sold By Amazon option. Even if it appears that you are paying a couple of £/$ more it is more than likely you are comparing the price of a real item against the price of a fake.

To give you an idea of the extent of the fake goods problem. In a 2016 survey by Apple - 90% of the 'Apple' chargers sold through Amazon - using the other the two methods..which includes the "Fulfilled by Amazon" option -  were found to be counterfeit....90%! 

            

 
« Belkin CarAudio Connect AUX with Bluetooth | Main | Liquid Image Ego Review - Part 2 »
Tuesday
Sep182012

A Car DVR with a wired rear camera

My Car DVR reviews seem to be quite popular, so I thought it was time to do another one. It takes something a bit different to get my attention with so many similar car cams available. This model does have the interesting feature of an additional wired rearview camera. The fact that the camera is compact and pretty cheap also counts in its favour.  

I hijack the beginning of the video review to explain why it’s really not possible for me to answer the (hundreds) of email requests I receive asking me to recommend a specific ‘best’ car camera. This will also apply in relation to the similar requests I often get regarding action cams. 

I really can’t tell people what camera to buy, any more than a car magazine would try and tell you what car you should drive. These reviews are produced only to help people to formulate a decision based upon their own very specific personal requirements. Please also bear in mind that everything I test is only used for a short period of time, I have no idea about the long term reliability of any of the products I review. 

Overall though, this seems to me like a pretty decent camera for the price, despite one or two relatively minor niggles. I paid approximately £50 for mine from this seller on eBay who despatched from the UK. If you want an up-to-date list of auctions, you can click This Link which will perform a search on eBay UK for you.

Some of the other eBay sellers stock a grey coloured model and some also come with a different style of adjustable rear camera. 

I have also found it for sale on DX.COM where it seems to be supplied with an additional suction cup mount

As always there seem to be a few variations of this camera around - so take a close look at any example screenshots shown in any adverts. The menus in mine appear as a bar along the bottom of the screen.  Here's an example of one where the OSD looks completely different, and I have no idea how this one performs (It also comes without the rear camera).

UPDATE - 22 SEPTEMBER 

Download four clips here - Front & Back, Day & Night.

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Reader Comments (493)

the sensors in this cam are junk for night footage. there's no way to make it better. if you need good night footage, you'll need a different camera. i just got an a118/b40 for my wife's car. similar form factor to this camera but only single camera, it does true 1080p and is halfway decent at night. check out dashcamtalk.com for some good info on a lot of different models. they call this dual camera the i1000/f70 on dashcamtalk.

August 29, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJason G

Hi all. I have a user manual (English) that also explains how to run invert (mirror) video or positive video that a lot of you are having problems with.
Hope this helps
If anyone ( or techmoan) can let me know how to get the pics on this forum , send me a message and I'll post it

August 31, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterColin

Hi Collin, that would be great. I'm very interested and willing to put it on my webspace so we can put a link from here to it. You can't actually put an image on this blog, you can add a link to a picture that is actually on another site. Send me an email at zellufdoen@deds.nl with the image or text and I'll arrange it for you if you want me to.
cheers,
Ernie

August 31, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterErnie

20 pages of the manual sent Ernie ,
Thanks for your help getting this online for people to see.

August 31, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterColin

AN ENGLISH MANUAL click on the links and safe the images on your pc. Thanks to Colin for sharing this!!!
(hopes this works in one go cause I can't edit nor preview...)

Page 1 and 2
Page 3 and 4
Page 5 and 6
Page 7 and 8
Page 9 and 10
Page 11 and1 2
Page 13 and 14
Page 15 and 16
Page 17 and 18
Page 19 and 20

There are no copyrights claimed on this document, and since the manufacturer never supplied me with any manual its display here only helps other misfortunate customers (and so their market too), I guess.
You can also email me directly on my one of my internetsites like Ernie's Engines

August 31, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterErnie

My previous post with a set of html links in it, seems not to come through. So, for an ENGLISH MANUAL :
copy and past the next line into your browser address bar.

http://www.lamoer.fr/dashcam/dashcam.html

sorry for being so primitive but this is not my blog.
This manual does not show how to CHANGE DEFAULT CHINESE LANGUAGE into proper English; try this sequence
presse [menu] button, then 3 times right, 7 times down

August 31, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterErnie

Now I see my post with html code did get through in the end;
Last but not least, a zip file for easy downloading the ENGLISH MANUAL

dashcam manual.zip

good luck,
Ernie

August 31, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterErnie

Hi,
I've come across a similar item with the following details.
Do they seem up to date,,,, or worth considering ?
SQ909B CMOS
2.0"TFT lcd
120°
1280*720/640*390
4032*3024
JPGE/AVI
USB1.1 • AV OUT
TF CARD,UP TO~32GB
1 no distortion HD recording device, image clarity, no smear, with a fill light 2 with loop recording function automatically delete old files recorded in the new file.

many thanks

September 3, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterFurkin

Hi Furkin, don't get your hopes up too quickly. This camera is produced in China and comes with no mark or modelnumber. Therefor its delivered by many different suppliers and they all put on their own labels and names for it.
By the looks of these specs you've given, its the same animal in a different skin :-)
But if the price it good, have a go!

September 3, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterErnie

Well - after having had one of these dual cameras for approx 3 months, with various problems, which some contributors on here have helped to resolve (thanks) mine has finally given up. Don't think there is any chance of a refund (shipped from China, from a "uk stock" company!)', as postage would be more than the value of the camera. Going to try a G1WH, (from a "proper" UK supplier) unless, you guys know better.......??

September 8, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterGary

if you like the form factor, look into the a118/b40. i like the performance of the g1w but it's too bulky. i put a b40 in my wife's van a few months ago and it's a good unit. same sensor and chipset as g1w. capacitor version is coming soon, apparently. sample video on my youtube channel: www.youtube.com/gibson99dotcom

September 8, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJason G

@Gary, sorry to read that, such a shame if products just far too soon give up on you. Have you tried another car adapter or usb-cable to get it back to life? If I lived around the corner I would have liked to open it up for you and have look, but France is too far to cycle :-)

September 8, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterErnie

@Colin, today I finally had a moment to look into your manual for the 'inverted video' setting. Unfortunately this feature is not for mirroring the rearcamera (as to make it a proper mirror) but to change the front cam position from dashboard to ceiling position.
Too bad, would have been fun.
The language setting is bytheway : 3 x [menu] button, 7 x [down] button, look for word English among all the chinese crap.

September 8, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterErnie

@Ernie - yep tried all those things - as I have two cameras, I have spare leads etc to "swap" around. From day one (as many contributors on here refer to) its had a life of its own, with variable results all the time. But bottom line is, it has never been reliable and as I use it when teaching pupils to drive, it has become (or would be if it did the job) a crucial bit of kit. Have decided to get a G1WH and see how that goes, will let you know - if you have a contact email, happy to converse directly, if you have any tips to resuscitate it!!

September 9, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterGary

@Gary, too bad it was not what you expected. I can imagine the screen being too small anyway to really easily show pupils where they went wrong in traffic or handeling the car. You'd need an external screen to do that, I guess.
What happens a lot, like with laptops, the power socket works itself loose from the pcb its soldered onto. Often replacing or resoldering brings results! Can't waste much on a broken device so have try or ask somebody technical.
You can always email me at 'zellufdoen@deds.nl', I'm dutch but live in France.
good luck later on with your new cam!
Ernie

September 9, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterErnie

I have just purchased one of these cameras and although it records OK my car radio is greatly affected by interference from the camera which is not much good when I enjoy listening to the radio. It must be the camera because when I disconnect it from the lead to the cigarette lighter the interference disappears. Now awaiting comment from e bay seller and will return it provided postage to China does not cost more than the camera,
It might be helpful in future if you could comment on how well shielded the devices are and whether they affect your car's radio.

October 11, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAlan B

@alan B, sorry to read about your troubles with the radio. Although this is not my blog, I have followed it for quite a while and haven't read anything about this subject yet. If you could get your hands on one of those ferrite beads to distort the powerlead, it might help you out. You can also find them on power leads of laptops (the thick part right near the DC plug), or buy one at an electronics shop.
Does this interference occur on FM radio or are you listening on other bands?
Ernie.

October 11, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterErnie

The interference is on FM and I cannot tell any difference on AM but the quality of sound on FM is far greater than on AM normally. I really do not want to try solutions to something which should have worked out of the box and pour good money after bad but thanks for the suggestion.

October 12, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAlan B

@Alan B: too bad you don't want to try, cause another simple test would be to install it in another car. What's most likely the case is that your sigaret lighter is on the same power wires as your car radio. But not all cars are wired like that. If this dashcam would be so bad on this matter, it would have been on this blog many times. Give it a go! (no I have no personal gain if you succeed, I just like helping out)

October 12, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterErnie

Thanks again for the advice. If the cigarette lighter and radio are on the same power line why is there no interference when my sat nav or phone is plugged in? It still sounds to me as though the cable or camera are not correctly shielded.

October 12, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAlan B

I found there is huge variance in the quality / shielding of 12v car adaptors. On my Mobius I used a USB > mini USB lead, with a USB adaptor plugged into my cigar lighter. The adaptor was a cheap & cheerful thing from the Mobius supplier, only £2.50 delivered from China. It worked fine, but my FM reception went lousy. I replaced it with a £10 version from Amazon, which specifically claimed to be well-shielded, and added a ferrite choke on the USB cable, as Ernie suggested above: problem completely solved.

My radio & cigar lighter are on different circuits, but I'm sure the adaptor was simply haemorrhaging static. I guess you get what you pay for & the manufacturers may skimp on the peripherals with these inexpensive cameras. If you like the camera it might be worth investing a little extra on a cleaner power supply. Good luck!

October 12, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSimon

Thanks to Ernie and Simon for their comments. I decided to send the camera back and fortunately it wasn't to China but to Enfield so postage was less than I was expecting. I have always been wary of going for really cheap things because you do normally get what you pay for so I will pay attention to this advice in the future.

October 14, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAlan B

Do you can send me the user manual for this camera? I recently bought on amazon and I did not the manual. Thank you

October 16, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMarcos Luciani

"Do you can send me the user manual for this camera? I recently bought on amazon and I did not the manual. Thank you"


Lol!! There's a link that I've had Ernie put my manual online for everyone!

October 16, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterColin

Hi!

Using a 16mb sd class 4 card

Love this camera but it suffers from pixelation - anyone got any tips on settings or a different sd micro card to try? task :)

October 29, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterlisa

@Lisa, I had all sorts of issues including frame freeze for good 20 seconds. I used high speed class 10 as well but no help.
I finally disconnected the rear camera for good and the main unit now records without any issue.
So the problem could be due to the feed from rear camera or some interference from radio antenna or something else.

November 4, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterIndy

@ Lisa / @ Indy, I had serious issues with frame freeze, and I realized that it was only happening when the SD card was filling up. For some reason, the unit was having a hard time recording over old footage. So, every few weeks, I take a few seconds to format the card via the screen... no problems since then.

November 21, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterPRC

Thanks for the replies :)

I bought a Samsung 10 class SD card (orange one as suggested earlier) & formatted every other day has seemed to cure the issue! :)

The last few days the unit has been displaying a blank white screen but still seems to have captured the road.

I'll try resetting the unit next! Great wee thing back and front when they're working properly..

November 25, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterlisa

Thanks for giving some kind of inputs on DVR car camera. Can someone also let me know the best DVR available to purchase.

November 26, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSeema

Only you can decide what's best. Check out dashcamtalk.com for good info on loads of different cameras. forums are great too.

November 26, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJason G

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