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How did you select your dashcam?

Discussion in 'Model S: Interior & Exterior' started by tomp, Nov 3, 2015.

  1. tomp

    tomp Member

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    Hi All,

    I'm considering getting a dashcam. It seems a lot of folks here have selected either the BlackVue 550 or 650. But yet there also seem to be reports of problems with the BlackVue systems (this thread).

    So - please help me decide on which dashcam is the best option. Specifically, how did you select your dashcam?

    Thanks!
     
  2. CHG-ON

    CHG-ON Still in love after all these miles

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    I got the 650 based on all the reading I did on this forum. I haven't read of any failures. Plan to install late this month. Hope I'm not missing something.
     
  3. Khatsalano

    Khatsalano Member

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    Blackvue 650 based on this forum.
     
  4. efusco

    efusco Moderator - Model S & X forums

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    Just to temper the Blackvue enthusiasm, I too bought one based upon the comments here and with the advantage of a group buy someone organized the price seemed right. At this point, overall, I'm happy with it, but it has not been without its frustrations...
    1)I had recurrent issues with an error message of "Please check the SD card" and I could not format with the camera, even taking out the card and formatting at home only temporarily fixed the problem. Ultimately I had to overwrite the firmware (via a solution sent to me by a company that sells dash cams) which helped. I've since updated my SD card and have had no issues since.

    2)The think runs HOT...I have a permanent "fog" on the windsheild near the vent on the dash cam that has to be cleaned off with a cleaner--I suspect because it's off-gases from the plastic rather than just condensation. Not a huge deal, but it looks bad and is an annoyance I hadn't expected.

    3)I use an iPhone and find it a huge PITA to locate and then save the clips of video that I want. It is somewhat easier to pull the SD card and use the Blackvue software on the PC, but even that isn't the most intuitive. I have never heard anyone else complain, so maybe it's an age thing for me, but I'm not a technophobe by any stretch and find this to be less than an ideal option. None the less, when I've wanted to find and share or post a clip, I've been able to.

    4) The GPS speed reading almost never works...once in a while, when the planets are aligned and I've purged my system of all mortal foods it does seem to give a reading. Some have found a spot through which it can pick up better, but if that's an important piece for you, you might look elsewhere.

    OTHO, image quality is pretty impressive, the automatic park mode and drive mode are nice, it is a compact and sleek design that is pretty unobtrusive once installed.
     
    • Like x 1
  5. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    I had that error once and it drove me nuts for about a day. I couldn't figure out where the "Please check the SC Card" message was coming from. I thought it was coming from the 17" screen and was a bit panicked. Once I did figure it out, I popped the card out and formatted it in my computer. Wasn't aware of the ability to do it in situ until I read the manual. Only happened once in over a year of use.

    I've noticed the heat, but not any off-gassing film on the glass. It's not nearly as hot at night which makes me think at least some of it is a result of the sun hitting the black body in the daytime.

    Meh. It's not that bad for me. Turn on the Blackvue WiFi; search for it on my iPhone and connect; launch the Blackvue app. Not sure how they (or any one) could make it any better. But if I want to save a number of clips, like a trip or something, then yes, it's way faster to just pop the SD card out.

    I believe that's an artifact of the Tesla's coated windshield and not any deficiency with the dashcam. Lots of people have reported how EZ-Pass tags and RF gate openers just can't get through the glass. I would imagine it blocks GPS signals too.
     
  6. MsElectric

    MsElectric Active Member

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    I almost bought the 750 because it offers 1080P front and rear while the 650 rear resolution is less than 1080P but what I find annoying is how the 750 and every other higher end dash cam I considered is now crammed with an idiotic LCD screen. Apparently the Korean market this is designed for loves large LCD screens but I am still looking for a small discrete dash cam solution that is 1080P (or better) both front and rear. If anyone knows of a dash cam solution with high resolution front and rear cameras please let me know. Otherwise I feel I'm better off installing two independent 1080P (or better) cameras both front and rear.
     
    • Like x 1
  7. tomp

    tomp Member

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    Thanks all for your input. Did you have any close runner-ups you considered? I'm also leaning towards the 650, but would like to fully evaluate the options.
     
  8. Rockster

    Rockster Active Member

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    I bought a Lukas LK-7900 nearly two years ago and it is working perfectly, through the Texas heat and the Texas cold. I love it.
     
  9. efusco

    efusco Moderator - Model S & X forums

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    • Like x 1
  10. llavalle

    llavalle Member

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    Just to add another data point. I owned a LK-7900 Ace for 2 years before I switched (when I got my Tesla) to the Blackvue 650 2CH. I swicthed to get the rear view cam.

    Build quality seems better on the Blackvue and the WiFi is nice but in reality, I prefered my Lukas dashcam...

    GPS :
    Lukas : 0 Problems, even in the Tesla
    BlackVue : works 5% of the time. Can go a LONG way without any GPS signal and since the onboard clock is not reliable, your video won't have the correct timestamp!

    Temp :
    Lukas : runs cools
    BlackVue : runs VERY hot. It does prevent fogging in cold temp around the cam, it appear as if the camera as a small defrost feature lol. I also experience the goo on my windshield to the right of the dashcam. Not a big deal but annoying.

    WiFi :
    Lukas : does not have WiFi but not really a show stopper since important footage is not overwritten (see next point)
    BlackVue : has WiFi but transfer speed is VERY low and app is very slow to respond. Only very usefull in aligning the camera.

    Storage Management : This is where the blackvue fails miserably in my opinion :
    Lukas : Separate folder for "Always-On", Motion (in parking mode) and Event. You assign quota (in %) for each category like 80% always ON, 10% Motion and 10% Event. Events will only be overwritten by newer Events, if the 10% is reached. Ex : you see a crash in front of you : you trigger the Event mode (see next point). The footage will be put in the Event folder. The only way to overwrite it is to accumulate 10% of events footage.
    BlackVue : Everything in the same folder. Normal recording, parking mode and events are simply TAGs on the files! If you trigger an event yesterday, i'll get overwritten when the card is full, regardless of what type of recording is happenning.

    Functionnality :
    Lukas : Has a button to trigger events. Records last 10sec and next 20 when hitting the button. Small LED display you can set to display GPS speed or Time of day or both
    BlackVue : No button to trigger events. You need to tap on it... but in any cases, it's not that usefull since the file will be tagged and overwritten by less important data.

    Lukas also win IMO for the rear cam connection, they use a USB cable instead of a very fragile coax cable.

    Let's just say I'm waiting for a nice, small Lukas 2 channel and I'm dumping the Blackvue. I used to download the event folder every month or so and I had all the important footage.

    Quick note for the Blackvue : the latest version supports "Cloud Integration". The camera connects to a WiFi (hotspot or home) and you can use the app to download files / watch the feed live. This is VERY nice but unfortunately only applies to the 650 that were manufactured after April 2015.
     
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  11. tomp

    tomp Member

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    Just to follow up on my own thread:
    I'm currently leaning towards the Thinkware F750. It seems like it's more expensive than the BlackVue, but I'm concerned about the multiple reports of issues with the Blackvue 650, including having to 'fiddle' with firmware or other settings. There have been a few recent threads/posts about the Thinkware. I'm currently looking to see if any better deals on that camera come about with black friday sales.... here's hoping.
     
  12. CHG-ON

    CHG-ON Still in love after all these miles

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    By the reviews here. Went with the Blackvue dual cam 650. STILL trying to find time to install the damn thing. I hope I was right!
     
  13. liuping

    liuping Active Member

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    I went with the Thinkware F750. I wanted dual channels this time, but will all the issues I had with my BlackView550, I did not want to go with them again.

    I have not set up the rear camera yet, but so far the front is working perfectly.
     
  14. ardart99

    ardart99 Blinded By The Light

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    I installed a Thinkware f750 about a month ago ..... it works fine ... 1080p both front and rear cameras. I really like the parking surveillance mode ... the night rider mode scanning light lets someone know it's recording them when they walkup! .... However an issue is that due to the Model "S" windshield masking it won't get a gps signal installed. Suggest you hook it up before install and let it connect. It gets its time setting from the initial gps hookup. I cut off all the traffice light, lane changing, speed warning features that depend on a clear windshield ... doesn't bother me as I don't like my camera constantly talking anyway ..... the "S" autopilot does most of what I want already. There are some third party gps signal enhancers out there. Has anyone had any experience using one in a Model "S"?
    Thinkware -01.jpg
     
  15. waynesworld

    waynesworld Member

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    I installed the Thinkware 750 Front&Rear and I'm happy with the device. I had trouble with GPS reception because of the glass, so used a re-radiating antenna (Amazon.com: SBG-190) with the GPS receiver located under the nose cone and the transmitter hidden in the rear-view mirror surround. Everything works well so far.
     
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  16. ardart99

    ardart99 Blinded By The Light

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    Thanks just ordered will give it a try. ... did you run into any problems with other locations or just did the nose cone location to mirror as the first try? Some Amazon comments said they had inference problems being too close to the device and with other GPS devices ..... ?
     
  17. Khatsalano

    Khatsalano Member

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    I think just writing a check for a professional installer to do it is in your future. :) Writing a check is a lot easier than trying to fish wire through the firewall.
     
  18. bollar

    bollar Disgruntled Member

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    For what it's worth, once I got the first fix, which did take awhile, subsequent fixes have been very fast. My guess is the GPS thought it was in China and the search algorithm took time to try the satellites overhead. The Tesla shielding certainly doesn't help that process.
     
  19. steph280

    steph280 Member

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    I really like the small form factor of Blackvue. But the issues discussed in the thread had me search for alternatives.
    Currently I have a Mobius in my other car, and it's as discrete as you can get. Picture quality is great, but it doesn't have any bell or whistles such as LCD, parking mode, etc. But what I really want is a two channel system so I can catch the jerk who backed his car into my bumper in parking lot.

    I ran into this camera and it has just about everything I wanted. But I've not heard of this brand so I am still researching. I really like how small the cameras are:
    K1S

    If anybody has one of these please share your experiences.
     
    • Like x 1
  20. Panoz

    Panoz Member

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    A dashcam? Bleh, I say. You know what I do? I have all those cheerleaders that didn't say boo to me in high school now sit in the passenger seat with a DSLR. They married football bums and are now not the attractive things they used to be. They like me and my Tesla, so I exact NERD REVENGE by granting them a ride in my car if they take video. I win!
     
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