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More dash cam install notes

Discussion in 'Model S' started by tajitoy, Mar 11, 2017.

  1. tajitoy

    tajitoy Member

    Jan 7, 2017
    Blythewood, SC
    Greetings all, for some reason installing this dash cam (Thinkware F770) has been more of a pita than i'd planned for. Of course, the simplest thing to do is to use the 12v adapter and call it a day. I doubt many of us want that cord snaking around and using this method disables the parking mode. The "power connector" behind the mic grate in the top front of the headliner did not work for me. I know others have had success with it being powered on constantly but mine would not stay on more than 15" after the car was started. And, as with the 12v adapter, you do not have access to parking mode. So, the only solution was to run the supplied cord to the fusebox under the hood. Instructions for accomplishing this are described elsewhere in the forum. I wanted to provide the following information in the hopes of helping others avoid the pitfalls and delays I encountered in completing this task.
    First, I'm not sure the original pigtail power cable is long enough. I actually had to get another one from Thinkware to complete the job. And, note that their color scheme is inconsistent - sometimes the red wire is B+ and other times the yellow one is. Be sure to follow the label attached to the end of the wire. And, just to verify if you need to, the center conductor of the power plug is B+, the larger metal ring around the outside of the plug is ground and the smaller ring is the accessory connection. (for some reason the Thinkware help line was not forthcoming with this info - they seem to think this is proprietary information and would not tell me - I had to trace it myself).
    So, for wiring: I have a 2 Dec 16 production date MS. I was unable to upload a picture of the fusebox - it is centered adjacent to the suspension air reservoir near the top of the front trunk. You have to remove two large plastic covers to get to it - the first one just pops out and the second one is retained by three plastic lock pins at the top. Also be aware that on either side of the lower part (end nearest the front of the car) of the second cover there are two plastic locks that have to be depressed in order to remove it. You'll also have to remove the two drain lines, one on either side. There is only one fusebox - it is about a foot wide and three inches tall. There is a picture of all the fuse/relay locations on the outside and a note saying "refer to owner's manual for fuse/relay replacement information." Well, at least in my version of the owner's manual, the word "fuse" doesn't exist - not in the text, not in the index. So, I used a DVM to probe all of the fuses, both with the car on and off. When the car is on, all fuses have power except 124, 138 and 139. With the car off, the following fuses are powered off: 102, 106-110, 112-114, 122, 123, 130-132, 135-137. I used the 30A fuse #143 for my B+ and the 15A fuse #131 for accessory. It would be nice to know what all of these control but that information is not apparently available. NB: the left side of 131 is the hot side and should be use as the supply side of the add a fuse so whatever little drain the camera produces does not flow thru the 15A fuse as well. I was not able to orient the add a fuse on the 30A source due to the configuration of the add a fuse - due to the pigtail, it would orient in only one direction. Be sure to retain the supplied in line 1A cartridge fuses as they are your primary overcurrent protection. Finally, the add a fuse is for style ATR micro fuses - I was unable to find this at any of our local parts stores (Carquest, Advance Auto, NAPA, O'Reillys, Auto Zone) so ordered from the internet - search for "micro2 fuse tap ATR" and you'll find them - less than $2 each.
  2. wiredprairie

    wiredprairie Member

    Nov 21, 2016
    Wisconsin, USA
    Interesting -- I have a December 2016 S and installed the F770 last weekend and used the mic connector as the constant power successfully. For switched/accessory power, I tapped into one of the wires for the mirror.

    I'd read that some folks had trouble when they connected to the 2nd and 3rd pin rather than 1st and 3rd pin.
  3. Prefect

    Prefect Member

    Oct 27, 2015
    I just bought a cheap OBD plug and wired the power to the battery-pin and ground. This gives me solid constant battery power. I also connected a 12v USB charger in the process and wired a lightning cable to the iphone mount, so I can charge the phone while it is in the cradle between the two screens.

    Auto car OBD2 Connector 16pin Male Plug 16 Pin OBD II OBD2 Diagnostic tool Male Terminal Connector Plug on | Alibaba Group

    Pin 16 and 4:

    The nice touch of this solution is that you can unplug the OBD connector if you want to turn off the camera and iphone charger.
  4. ND100

    ND100 Member

    Mar 24, 2016
    Take a look at my posts at Thinkware F770 - it explains how to get parking mode working, all by tapping into the power near the mic and the rear vision mirror. The only thing that doesn't work properly (for some reason) is WiFi on the F770.
  5. djeung

    djeung New Member

    Sep 19, 2016
    Woodinville, WA
    Does anyone have recommendations for an installer in the Seattle, WA area who has already successfully installed the Thinkware F770 in a MS refresh? All of the installers I've spoken to, prefer the competition to the Thinkware.
  6. Fusion

    Fusion Member

    Apr 13, 2016
    San Francisco
    Nice! That is perfect! Perfect. Cheap way. and probably cleaner too.

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