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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%! 

            

 
« The HP Envy 120 - A printer you want to show off. | Main | Meze 11 Classics give a very enjoyable wooden performance »
Sunday
Dec082013

DOD LS430W GPS Dashcam Review

Here's my review of the DOD LS430W car camera. The camera was supplied by DOD-TECH UK

I mentioned in the video that this camera comes with both OSX & Windows GPS playback software. I didn't test out the Windows version but I believe that often Windows users opt to use a more fully featured, and free GPS playback software package called Registrator Viewer. I should mention that apparently the GPS implementation on the LS430W is a particularly accurate and fast one...I'll admit to knowing next to nothing about GPS, so I'll just take their word for that. 

You'll find my short downloadable sample clips here.

Buying links are below 

The price I mentioned in the video is the cheapest price I found on ebay...but some people who have bought from ebay sellers in China have received inferior clones, so you are probably better off getting one from an official dealer. My camera was supplied by DOD-TECH UK, who currently have the camera on sale at £149 including delivery. That comes with a 1 Year warranty and no chance of incurring any customs and importation charges for UK buyers.

UPDATE 2015

This camera has been discontinued and replaced with the very similar LS460W - I've had a number of people contact me to tell me that they've bought the LS460W and found it to be a very good camera. I've therefore put links to the LS460W below.

   

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Reader Comments (280)

A 32 Gb micro SD card records between four and five hours of video in the LS430W
Agree; it is not really designed to capture holiday moments.
No; you cannot turn off the "looping function". You can prevent a file be it a one, three or five minute
segment from being overwritten by pressing the SOS emergency file lock button.
(The button on the left in the middle on the rear, or screen side of the camera.
Hope this helps.
SHUMBA

August 12, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSHUMBA

Hi Techmoan, Hi Shumba,

Thanks for your replies to my question. It may be a case of having to change my card when it reaches its maximum. I have a 64GB card so hopefully that will do it. In the meantime, I will look around for another camera that can record the trip and the GPS co-ordinates. It won't be for every journey I make, just the most scenic routes. I would like to be able to edit each trip down to a few highlights and save that.

Any further suggestions would be most welcome.

Thanks, Erik.

August 12, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterErik Thomas

The Sony AS100 action camera might be exactly what you need. You'll find a link to my review by clicking on the image on the right.

August 12, 2014 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

Hi Techmoan, Thanks for your advice - I will look at the Sony AS100. You have a great website by the way, the reviews and range of items reviewed is brilliant. Cheers, Erik.

August 12, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterErik Thomas

Can anybody out there provide us with a review of the DOD LS 460W?
Apparently it has just arrived on the market.
Appreciate any information.
Best....SHUMBA

August 20, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSHUMBA

Hi Techmoan,

I just got a LS430W. But there are 2 problems.

1. The HUD speed display could last for only around 2 or 3 minutes. Then it has disappeared. The screen became dark and I have had to press the Mode_ bottom to have the speed displayed. I don’t know whether I have set it incorrect.

2. When I checked the movie file to play back, I have found that there are no files for a significant interval time (approximate 10 minutes) before I drove the car to stop. The next file to see is only the one when I pressed the Mode bottom again or start the car. I don’t know whether the camera has not recorded or it has missed to save the file at that time.

Could you please help me to resolve these problems?

Thank a lot
Dzung

August 23, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDzung

DZUNG....I have a DOD LS430W and have had no issues.
1. Check your settings, as you can adjust the display settings to show both what the camera is filming along with setting a time until the screen goes blank. The speed display is also adjustable.
2. I tried a different brand of camera; called "Genius". It would film, but upon playback, there were files that would not play resulting in blank gaps in your journey. I suggest you first try another micr SD card along with a complete reset of the camera.
Be sure to format the new SD card. If this doesn't work; then return the camera for another.
Hope this helps.
Best......SHUMBA

August 23, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSHUMBA

Hi CHUMBA,

1. I have looked at the setting but under the Standby Speed Display (which I means for the setting of Speed Display) I have found only 4 options: off, 15 secs, 1 minute and 3 minute.
As I chosen "off", then the Speed Display hasn't shown any sign.
As I chosen "1 minute", the Speed Display has appeared for only about short time (approx. 1 minute), then it became blank (dark).

Could you please tell me how to adjust properly.

2. I have formatted my Transend SDHC 32 GB and now to see where the problem with the unrecorded video is solved or not. But I put the card in my laptop, I have seen the card capacity is only 29.2 GB. Is there a problem with it?

Thank you,

Dzung

August 24, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDzung

Hello Mr. DZUNG;

I think you need to look at your system settings and set the screen saver to off. This is similar to the standby speed display settings, but the system settings of off/3 minutes/5 minutes/ 10 minutes. If you want to have the screen visible/viewable all the time, then choose screen saver "off". (Hint - Do not drive your vehicle while watching the camera display or you might have a crash)
Yes, a 32Gb micro SD card will only show approximately 29 Gb of space available, I don't know why. Be sure to format the SD card in the camera. Again, if you are still having blank file files, or files that you are unable to play-back, then it sounds like a faulty camera or the software within the camera.
Below is a copy & paste of Page 14 of the manual for the DOD LS430W Camera. You can go to the DOD-Tech website and download for free the entire manual for this camera.

Hope this helps................Best................SHUMBA

ON-SCREEN DISPLAY (OSD) MENUS
Main Menu Sub Menu Options
[MODE] [UP]/[DOWN] - [OK] [UP]/[DOWN] - [OK]
Standby
Mode
Recording Setting
WDR On
Resolution 1080FHD/720P/720P 60FPS/WVGA/VGA
Exposure +3/+2/+1/0/-1/-2/-3
White Balance Auto/Daylight/Cloudy/Tungsten/
Fluorescent
Record Audio Off/On
Date Stamp Off/On
Loop Recording Off/2 Minutes/3 Minutes/5 Minutes
Gsensor Off/High/Middle/Low
Motion Detection Off/On
Plate Stamp
Driver Fatigue Warning Off/1H/2H/3H/4H
GPS Track Off/On
Standby speed display Off/15 Seconds/1 Minutes/3 Minutes
GPS Speed Warning Off/40/60/80/100/120
World Time Zone
Password Setting
Speed Unit KMH/MPH
Image rotation Off/On
System Setting
Format SD Card
Language Support Multiply Language
Date/Time
Frequency 50Hz/60Hz
IR LED Off/On
Beep Sound Off/On
Screen Saver Off/3 Minutes/5 Minutes/10 Minutes
TV Mode PAL/NTSC
Version firmware version
Default Setting Return menu setting to defualt - Cancel/Ok

August 24, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSHUMBA

Dzung, as SHUMBA stated turning off the screen saver feature should allow the Standby Speed Display (HUD) to stay on indefinitely, I prefer to have mine go off in 3 min or thereabouts as we don't want the passengers having a good visual on my actual speeds LOL.

In regards to your memory card I've encountered problems with the DOD recommended Kingston 64GB MicroSD in where it would cause the dash cam to lock up or as in your case, missing sections of footage, so it is highly probable your card is causing the issues. I have decided to stick with the Lexar 32GB class10 card and must say there hasn't been one lick of problems for months, one or more of my dash cams gets used almost daily and the LS430W has been rock solid with it being my daily driver... Even use it to take footage of the our feathered friends at the bird feeders, can get up close and personal that way ;-).

Regards... Slivy58

August 24, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSlivy58

Hi Slivy58;
Many thanks for your additional information. I have used a 32 GB Lexar micro SD card and it has performed flawlessly.
Have you had occasion to read about the DOD LS460W? Apparently it will be available soon. Supposedly the clarity of the video will improve. Don't let the 60 in the description mislead, as I thought it meant 60 frames per second. ...but DOD-Tech says no, only 30 frames/second. I would like a camera that has more clarity and one that can read licence plates from a greater distance.
Thanks again. ...Best
SHUMBA


a

August 24, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSHUMBA

Hi SHUMBA,

Yes did read about it after your mentioning here on Techmoan's site LOL, must say I haven't been following along lately with the latest and greatest in terms of dash cams so a tad out of the loop, more than pleased with my LS430W and there hasn't been the inkling to upgrade just yet.


Found a bit of info/review on the LS460W/LS360W here: http://dashcamtalk.com/forum/threads/2014-dod-ls460w-sony-exmor-cmos-iso3200-f1-6-wdr-3dnr-5x-gps-hud.6051/

The specs on the LS460W do not differ much from the LS430W but the one thing I have read (see link above) is the new model uses a Sony Exmor CMOS sensor which should improve night time vision, sample vids show there is still a lot of blur when the vehicle is moving and the light is low, doubt you'd be able to capture a frame in some of these instances and still be able to see things clearly. The reviewer did mention too that the daytime images did appear softer than on the LS430W, upon watching his videos it did leave me wondering a bit, in its defence the reflections on his windshield from the dash etc did not help.

In the end SHUMBA I'll probably stick with what I got for the time being as there doesn't appear to be enough of an improvement to warrant upgrading, will have to wait for more "user" input before I can honestly say "never".

Later... Slivy58

August 24, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSlivy58

Hey SHUMBA,

Check out my video of a trip I took underground using the LS430W, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3q5Nbyz-l7o, my makeshift dash cam mount along with poor roads and a rough riding Toyota Land Cruiser didn’t help too much with the shake LOL.
The lighting is supplied via two stock GE-H6024 headlamps which are obviously yellowed due to the acidic water/mud U/G (would need sandpaper to remove, no really), in addition I added two 35W square LED lamps to the headache rack which incorporate a 12 LED array per unit, they produce a bright white light albeit it is diminished quite a bit once beneath the earth.

Just thought you might be interested as it strays from the norm for most dash cams hehehe.

Later… Slivy58

August 24, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSlivy58

Hey Slivy;

Thanks for the most interesting footage of a mineshaft. Amazing that one can drive a Land Cruiser down a mine shaft.
Are you propane or nat gas powered? Or maybe not as both might be too dangerous in a confined environment.

Is this what was called the Fording coal mine? Now I think it is Teck Cominco.
Final depth of around 12,000 feet. All in all a very impressive video. ..great lighting.
with regards to the new 460 camera, I will likely hang onto my 430 as it appears adequate for my needs.

Best......SHUMBA

August 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSHUMBA

SHUMBA,

No this is the Sullivan Mine located in Kimberley, BC which is approx 150 kms north of Fording Coal, both are owned by Teck, the Sullivan began in/around 1909 and was closed on Dec 21 2001. The area of the video is the 3700 haulage which delivered the ore via trains to the concentrator, the mine went mechanized in 1974 with many areas of old still continuing with the conventional theme, I've been there for 35+ years. Names and owners have changed over the years, started out as CM&S (consolidated mining & smelting), Cominco, Teckcominco and now just Teck, I had a brief experience at the coal mines but it wasn't my thing and to boot they are surface mines and not U/G.

In regards to the LS460W, unless the night videos are massively improved I see no point in upgrading either.

Regards... Slivy58

August 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSlivy58

Most interesting. ..I shall look into the Sullivan mine. I assumed the coal mines were U/G not open pit. Am a big holder of Westshore Terminals. Teck....copper, lead, zinc...
Thanks again for all of this information.
Best. ....SHUMBA

August 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSHUMBA

SHUMBA,

All the coal mines in the Elk Valley are open pit, the Elkview Mine (Teck owned) has a conveyor gallery 1.5 km long which is U/G, other than that all the mines there dig for coal on surface/open pit.

Regards,
Slivy58

August 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSlivy58

Thanks SHUMBA and Slivy58 for your nice assistance.

I have adjusted the setting as you indicated and it works well now :).

But there is one small issue I have with this LS430w. That is its 1.3 mm lens, which could capture very width image (140 degrees). It could deliver great extra view, but I also cause problem because the image looks not real. For example: the car seems to move over the road lines although we didn't in reality.

Do you know whether is it a software that could help play the movie images to be seen a litter more realer.

Thanks,

Dungz

August 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDzung

Hi Dungz,

I'm not sure exactly what you mean by "not real" but the one thing that comes to mind is with a poor mounting system, if the cam is allowed to move independent of the vehicle its mounted too it can cause a "wobble" effect, this makes everything in view appear to float or move around so it's best to make sure to keep the cam and mount as rigid as possible. By the way Dungz, are you using a suction mount or one that incorporates the 3M adhesive and is it the one supplied by DOD?
As for the lens it does exhibit a certain amount of blur and the elusive "fish-eye" (objects appear wrapped) effect at the outer edges but I have not found this to be much of an issue, haven't seen enough sample videos to know if this has been reduced further with the newest LS460W model.

Maybe SHUMBA has other suggestions that will help but for now that is all I have.

Regards,
Sivy58

August 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSlivy58

Thank Sivy58,

My term "not real" means that the object appears different compared with our human eyes. It is because of fish-eye effect as you mentioned above. Usually we can enjoy the wide-angle view and don't need to have a concern about it. But in my country we might have problem with fish-eye effect. The transport police often stops you when you cross over the no-passing lines. Some times the police are wrong. They stop you although you have not passed the no-passing line at all. If we show the dash cam image, it could be a evidence but against us, because the image looks like we have crossed over the line.

So, it is nice if we have a specific software to play back the clip with option to see the object like we see it with human eye in reality.

Dzung

August 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDzung

Mr. DZUNG;

It sounds as though you have a need for two cameras, that is one mounted on each side of you auto and pointing down towards the road so you can record where your auto is in relation to the lanes. The camera was designed to look directly ahead of your intended path of travel. If I purchase another camera, I will likely mount two cameras and position them so I get a view without the "fisheye" distortion effect.
Hope this helps and am waiting/hoping for better and sharper resolutions in the future.
Best....SHUMBA

August 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSHUMBA

Hi Dzung,

Thanks for the clarification as I understand now. In your case I’m not sure any camera mounted within the confines of one’s vehicle would alleviate said prosecution every single time, fisheye or not, the problem being is that if it does not show the actual positioning of the tire to the road it becomes a “your word against theirs” situation no matter how it looks on the dash cam… The only way this may not be true is if you stayed to the furthest possible left or right (country dependent) away from the no-passing lines, the cam then “should” show your relationship to these lines fairly definitively. My only solution to guarantee 100% immunity from false prosecution would be to mount cam(s) outside the vehicle; obviously it/they would have to be waterproof not to mention concealing and mounting challenges.

Yes SHUMBA your idea would help but if I got the gist of what Dzung is saying it still wouldn’t be foolproof, maybe I’m being too over analytical LOL

Just to comment on my LS430Ws lens distortion, yes it’s there but it is vastly improved over any of my other cams; definitely don’t find it being a big hindrance.

Regards,
Slivy58

August 26, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSlivy58

Thank Slivy58 and SHUMBA for your interesting advises.

August 26, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDzung

Hi Techmoan and Aces,

The compass of my LS430w seems to work not well. Most the time, the arrow has stayed in the begin position N-S even though the car moves. Only in very rare time, the arrow has shown the direction of the movement.

Is it normal with this LS430w or there is a problem with my one.

Thanks,

Dzung

September 9, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDzung

Hi DZUNG;
I have had no issues with the compass functions of my LS430W.
Contact DOD-TECH and ask them.
Best.....SHUMBA

September 9, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSHUMBA

Hi Techmoan, thanks for the review. This is the same hardware (with different front vent style) to the Halfords NextBase 402g

http://www.halfords.com/sat-nav-audio/car-entertainment-technology/in-car-cameras-parking-sensors/nextbase-incarcam-402g-professional

Note that in your review you said that the GPS data is stored in a folder somewhere and wasn't visible. In fact the GPS and Gforce data is stored in the .MOV file along with the video. MOV is a container format which supports this kind of usage, making it ideal for this application as all the data is self contained and you can simply give the file to someone and they have everything.

Thanks for your reviews, always entertaining.

September 13, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterChris

You can also extract the gps data into a separate file using Registrator Viewer ;-)

September 13, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterPewe

Chris.
Well it looks similar - but I just don't know for sure. Thanks for the info about MOVs, it's always good to learn something.

September 13, 2014 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

Hi Dzung;

I also have trouble with the LS430W compass function. My compass will not operate if the car is heading anywhere West. It can show N, S, E, NE, SE but nothing on the W side where it goes back to N. It took me a while to realise this and I thought, like you, that it was working erratically. I haven't done anything about it because the compass is of little practical use anyway.

Had it been capable of showing direction in degrees it might have been more useful.

September 14, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMichaelH

Hi Michel, thank for sharing. I think also it is only a minor problem and I can accept it

September 14, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDzung

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