Dash Camera Information Please?

Submitted: Sunday, Dec 07, 2014 at 15:45
ThreadID: 110362 Views:2615 Replies:5 FollowUps:11
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While travelling the vast spaces of our country, I shoot a lot of stills and video to use to create a story of the trip to watch in my dotage. For some time I have been considering buying a dash camera to add a bit more video action.

I would appreciate comments on the type of equipment used by others. I know the GoPro is a well known brand that has various levels of quality but I am interested to hear of other brands and users experiences with them.

I also want some guidance on quality levels. My camera is a Canon EOS 700D with capability to 18 Megapixels but I normally use it at 8 Mp to fit more on the card and to have manageable sized video files.

I know this is a big subject but one in which there seems to be much interest.

Thanks in advance.

Kevin
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Reply By: TomH - Sunday, Dec 07, 2014 at 17:45

Sunday, Dec 07, 2014 at 17:45
Here goes A Go Pro is not suitable as most models do not start automatically nor do they overwrite when the memory is full.

I have 3 Blackvue dash cams A DR400G a DR 500GW and a DR350

The first two have GPS. The 500 has a WIFI connection to a smartphone or a Tablet.

All of them start automatically and also have a parking mode that records for a set time.

To do that you need a thing called a Power Magic which can be set for time or battery level.

I have installed 6 of these in various vehicles and have had little trouble with them.
I have used the first two in AUS, NZ, USA, Canada and Alaska in temps from usual QLD summer and Texas heat to below zero in Alaska.

Can I just say that there is nothing more boring than the roads across Texas and New Mexico LOL.

The first two are HD cameras but no where near your Canon's quality.

They after all an "incident " camera and apart from when I was on holiday I never bother looking at the files. They are ok as a video camera and are quite good and if you pause the video you can read plates reasonably well.

Linkshttp://www.blackvue.com/en/main/main.asp

Powermagichttp://www.blackvue.com/en/contents/sub1.asp?idx=13

I dont know if I am allowed post links to some actual footage but I can if you want to see some

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Follow Up By: Kevin S - Life Member (QLD) - Sunday, Dec 07, 2014 at 18:11

Sunday, Dec 07, 2014 at 18:11
Thanks TomH. That's a very good start. I will check your links with interest. I hadn't heard of those brands.

I'm not interested in automatic starts. I want to use the device like a video camera by being able to turn it on and off to capture interesting areas of road that will add to my "story". Clearly I have much home work to do.

Actual footage would be interesting. I don't see why there should be a problem so long as copyright is not being breached.

Tanks for opening the batting.

Cheers, Kevin
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Follow Up By: garrycol - Sunday, Dec 07, 2014 at 18:50

Sunday, Dec 07, 2014 at 18:50
Blackvue is the Go Pro of dash cams. Go Pro is a dedicated sport camera, Blackvue is a dedicated dash cam - if would be nice to have a product that incorporates the advantages of both.

Garry
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Follow Up By: TomH - Sunday, Dec 07, 2014 at 19:01

Sunday, Dec 07, 2014 at 19:01
In that case a Gorilla grip and a video camera or a Go Pro would do the job Am in the process of uploading some footage to Google drive. My cameras record all the time in 3 minute intervals.
As long as the car is running they record. After the card fills up they overwrite the oldest but hold about 9 hours of HD video.
I used to drop the days video onto a HDD each night on holiday

The 500 costs about $ 250 now
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Follow Up By: Steve in Kakadu - Sunday, Dec 07, 2014 at 21:24

Sunday, Dec 07, 2014 at 21:24
We were just talking about this at dinner,as we are heading off over Xmas with the outlaw. I have the Gopro mount on the dash I also have a suction pad mount, we will use the Gopro for some of our filming we also have 2 Cannon SLR's and 2 I pads with time laps we also have an older cam corder.

Our quick trip this year is to Uluru and back, MIL is from Germany and we will see how see takes the heat.
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Follow Up By: TomH - Sunday, Dec 07, 2014 at 23:26

Follow Up By: Gramps - Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 00:01

Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 00:01
TomH,

I think you'll find most of the GoPros do overwrite when SD card is full if you've configured it correctly.

Regards
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Reply By: Member -Pinko (NSW) - Sunday, Dec 07, 2014 at 21:16

Sunday, Dec 07, 2014 at 21:16
Hello Kevin
I have a Blackvue DR600GW-HD. It is great for its intended use a and it has saved my bacon once in the shot time i have had it.
I have a Canon legria HFM52 and It is a great little video camera.
I to take small videos of the road ahead and add stills to make a DVD for the same reasons you do, I had to look up 'dotage'
My video camera is attached to the windscreen and the image stabilizer does not like corrogations and the camera switches off.
The blackview is unaffected by this for the same scenes.
If you are thinking of video you might look at the Sony action cam.
The top model comes with a small wrist screen like a large watch to activate the camera remotely as it is wireless.
However the lens is fixed focus..
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Reply By: Member - i'machocoholic - Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 14:27

Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 14:27
I will follow this post with interest, as although we have a Go-Pro mounted on our bulbar when off road, I wouldn't use it as a dash cam. The angle is quite wide and I think you'd get too much footage of your bonnet. Maybe I have it set wrong??!! Otherwise the quality of the video is great.

Linda.
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Follow Up By: TomH - Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 15:02

Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 15:02
The normal setting is 1/3 sky 2/3 land and yes you get a fair bit of bonnet in. If you have it too high the sky makes them flare and lose definition. You also need them mounted at the top of the windscreen pointed down a few degrees.

Have a look at my link
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Follow Up By: Member - i'machocoholic - Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 15:40

Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 15:40
I took a look, thanks. When we returned from our recent trip, I realised the bull bar didn't cut it for good footage. It was fine for general driving, but it didn't show the angles well enough when on some juicy tracks, I thought. I had planned to mount it to the the roof rack next time, but your windscreen idea is also good. Thanks for the tip!
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 15:45

Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 15:45
Linda,

When this thread started I thought it might be time to get my GoPro going too.

While setting it up, I noticed it has 3 settings for angle, Wide, Medium and Narrow(or was it Low??)
Might pay to experiment to find which one suits you best. Agree with Tom about the bonnet causing flare, really stuffs up even "still" photos.

Bob

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Follow Up By: TomH - Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 15:57

Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 15:57
Bob you misunderstand Its the sky that causes it to flare.

Have a shot coming out of a tunnel and it all goes like the sun as camera cant compensate fast enough for the amount of light.

Those videos (if there was 2) were in different cars First in a Ford Fusion on a cold wet day and second in a Hyundai Tucson (IX35) on a hot clear day A lens with less than 120degrees would be good, mine has a 160degree lens. Wider is better if you want adjacent scenery in the shot otherwise its just endless road.
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Follow Up By: TomH - Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 18:42

Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 18:42
Here are the other two videos THe first one has the flaring from under an overpass

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B-u1GSLuH_NgM21sQ2FkcmYwZTg/view?usp=sharing

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B-u1GSLuH_NgeDNNNHdoN2ViQW8/view?usp=sharing
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Reply By: Member - Rob D (NSW) - Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 15:17

Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 15:17
I have a Blackvue DR 500GW and a DR 600GW and have been using the former for years.
These record the image through the windscreen, the GPS location, and your speed as well as audio.

When the files are played back on your PC you get the street directory map and where you are on it that corresponds with the image.

Some of the most exciting things that happen to you are when you least expect them. We had a large bull camel appear from nowhere and run straight across the road in front of us on the Tanami track and we only missed him by inches. I would have loved to have captured that on video but did not as I did not have the Blackvue at the time. The same happened with Brumbies in the Snowy Mountains, again I did not capture because I only had a hand held camera.

These cameras are very useful if you are involved in an accident as they can prove that the other person caused the accident. If you caused it, then unfortunately the camera was not switched on at the time.
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Reply By: Kevin S - Life Member (QLD) - Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 21:48

Monday, Dec 08, 2014 at 21:48
Thank you very much to all contributors. You have supplied me with a great deal of information. Thanks TomH for the links. They gave a very clear idea of likely results. Now for the homework.

Thanks gain.

Kevin
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