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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)

this is somewhat an accident prone site Techmoan shoots himself in the face and I shoot myself in the foot .....as far as the cam is concerned that is.......Nothing too drastic mind the sort of thing techmoan would call a minor niggle In continious record mode the cam has a mind of its own....see previous post....Rather than having all the bother of sending it back I have set to record in 5 min segments Nice to hear your cam is installed Charmin ........sorry to hear your problems Matt hope you get things sorted out best of luck with that.....As I already have a front cam I am thinking of placing the main new cam in the back of the car to give me HD resolution for the rear view If you do have to order a new cam Matt I was looking at a site on Ebay called Savebase they offer the cam with version X6 rear view cam the one you can rotate plus both the 3m sticker and a suction mount. Not sure how good the site is but it maybe worth a check .......cheers

October 28, 2012 | Unregistered Commenteripol

Well after a morning of tinkering, I've decided it's best to buy a new one and save the other one for parts incase I need to replace something in the future. Even with power applied directly the circuit board where the 2 power pins of the USB port are it still wont charge. So chances are there's something else that I've blown aswell, although it will still switch on with the remaining charge that is in the battery. Not going to throw any more money at it, a new one has been ordered and I'll put it down to experience!
Ipol, I bought the ones with the rotating rear camera from an Ebay seller instead of the fixed cam like Techmoan did. The rear camera is good quality, obviously not HD, but the same quality of footage as in Techmoan's review. It is good in low light conditions, but if someone is following you at night with headlights on, there is a bit of glare but on the whole very good. One thing I have noticed though is that although the footage from the front camera is very good and clear, sometimes it does go a little bit blocky and jerky in places. I've put this down to a basic 4gb class 4 card I'm using so I have ordered an 8gb class 10 to hopefully see an improvement. Even with the class 4 card the footage is very clear, but I just want perfection. My night time footage also seems to be better than in techmoan's review. Certainky not as dark and if on a road with street lighting, I can read the registration numbers of passing cars. It may be due to my xenon headlights though but it's certainly able to used as very clear evidence in the event of a collision. If I had any doubt with the quality and performance of this product then I certainly would not have ordered another one. For info, I got mine from this seller:
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/261082589454?ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1423.l2649

October 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMatt

For information, I have found that the fault was actually the car power lead. I thought it was mine but it wasnt. Part of the male USB has over heated and melted inside the unit. The seller has messaged me back apologising and offering an exchange. I am just waiting to see if me opening the unit will prevent me from returning it.

October 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMatt

Hi Techmoan,

would it be possible to review this cam again but with the rear camera used as a internal (occupant) view camera in day and night?

October 28, 2012 | Unregistered Commentercyben76

@Cyben76 unfortunately I've got quite a lot of stuff on at the moment. Perhaps someone else who bought one of these could comment. Although I can confirm that at night the interior of the car would just be darkness. I'm not too sure what you are looking for for daytime footage, but if you elaborate, perhaps someone could help.

October 28, 2012 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

cyben76 - having been playing around with mine the last few days I've had the rear camera pointing inside the car whilst I fixed the radio interference problem. During daylight the camera is fine, good enough quality but when dark, as techmoan suggested it is 'dark'.
I wondered if you thought because this type of rear camera, the adjustable one does have the IR LED's fitted and yes they do work, well I say work, they light up but that's about it, the same as the front camera they have literally no effect past about 2 inches ! why they fitted and bothered with them is a mystery…
The radio RFI is now sorted with ferrite cores fitted on DC and rear cam cable, my radio antenna is part of the rear screen heater element which is a bout 1” away fro the rear camera, sorted now though I’d say 90% better.
Did a re-set on the camera and the rolling on start up when dark seems to have gone as well.

The link Matt highligted for his supplier is the same place as mine came from but using a different seller name, same return address... velly interesting... -)

Thanks all for the input.....

October 28, 2012 | Unregistered Commentercharmin

I too have noticed there are a few of these for sale on ebay by what appears to be the same seller but with different names. Strangely, I was submitting 'best offers' which were declined but were actually the same price that they were selling under a different name. Either way, I am happy that the seller I bought from is trustworthy. My package came complete with a tracking number which gave me some info about where it was in the world, and arrived in about 18 days from China. I am even more impressed with the fact that the seller has told me it is ok to open the unit and try to fix it and if I cannot then he will still accept it as a return. Well, I cannot fix it and I will returning it to him for a refund or replacement. My other camera I bought has already been dispatched, and if he sends me a replacement for the faulty one I will have 3! Friends and family who have seen the camera have been very impressed, and would quite happily take it off my hands. Just one word of warning on a lighter note. Watch out what your wife records on it. She parked the car on my parents driveway, and to wind me up and give me a little surprise, turned the lense round and pulled faces and stuck her fingers up at it before it switched off. Trouble is, she didnt realise her mother in law was watching out the window and thought it was directed at her!!!!!! LOL!!!!!!

October 29, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMatt

Matt, you need to expose this seller who stands behind
their product, even after you dismantled it. Thats someone
we should think about supporting. Usually a seller would
use ANY excuse to not do what they should. I was a
retail manager for twenty years and major Japanese
companies would use any excuse to NOT stand behind
their products. Don't get me started!!!!

October 29, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterbillib

In my comments from yesterday, I have added the link to the seller the ebay ad where I purchased from. It was a bit of a gamble when I purchased as although they had 100% positive feedback, they had only sold 160 items. Now it's over 300 with only the rare minor complaint.

October 29, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMatt

HI Charmin ..Matt..... and the others nice to see the information flowing and thanks Techmoan I hadnt heard of FLV Crunch it sounds like an interesting download. In a previous post about the camera the instruction book mentioned one of the ports was for a gps module (not included) it was in english (chinese style) if anyone has ever watched the Benny Hill /Henry McGee chinese sketch will know what I mean....someone had mistakenly thought I had translated chinese into english....perhaps I should have phrased my wording differently Anyway I am now thinking that if its possible to plug in a module that maybe in the not too distant future the latest versions of the camera might be updated to include gps. Right now I am going to have a look at the FLV Crunch......hope it doesnt turn out to be a chocolate bar I am on a diet.......

October 29, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterIpol

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