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  #31  
Old 07-29-2014, 01:45 AM
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I work with "Car PCs" on a daily basis, they have SSDs - Solid State (hard) Drives. SSDs are slowly replacing the "legacy" spinning-disk hard drives in computers. We have a number of rack-mount i7 computers at work that have SSDs, with no HDDs that you likely have in the computer giving you access to the forum right now. The benefits are crazy-fast boot-ups and read times, very low power demand, no need for "defragging", and no moving parts - allegedly making them more reliable (we'll see). This no moving parts thing is where SSDs shine for an 8000-pound brick... like getting rid of the skipping that can happen on a CD player. SSDs were once crazy-expensive, but the prices are plummeting - as happens when new computer technology is mass-produced and mass-consumed.

Don't expect car PCs to be as reliable as their desktop counterparts - they live in very different environments. Vibration, dust, and extreme temps are very unfriendly to electronic circuitry. While you might make the counterpoint that the dash stereo has been working great for a lot of years, I could counter "What about the overhead?". The old car stereos are very basic and robust - car PCs are advanced technology by comparison... and a car stereo never needed a fan on the "processor" to keep it from overheating when in use. The car PCs I work with don't have fans - they are one great big heat-sink... and they need to be mounted where it's coolest in the vehicle and gets the most ventilation. The cooling fins need to be cleaned on a regular basis... so access is a factor.
While I have not worked in a dedicated automotive field I have done numerous gov/dod contracts for dev and IT support. I fully agree with the SSD. I was trying to split hte middle in recommendations for those that do not or can not afford to put $$ toward the SSD. All of my personal laptops minus things like my NAS etc are all SSD only. As you well know once you use a SSD you will never want to go back to "analog" hard drives. The speed and reliability is so far ahead in the SSD. I recall when they were still in dev and not public release watching a demo cold boot time demonstration.

My point was for those looking to use muli camera systems at least to me it makes sense to have a centralized server (mini) handling the storage . Given that a person might as well plan for future upgrades such as touch screen in the dash or center console. Attach GPS . Route diagnostic logging to it as well. A couple 512 SSD driver will take care of most anything needed for storage. IF anything needed to be saved could be handled via wifi once parked at a home for offloading. You could even script it to offload all diagnostic logging and video on a schedule to a home NAS or other large HD capacity machine.

I very much doubt I have anywhere near the direct experience specific to camera in automotive that you have so you likely know far more of the positives and well as pitfalls. But I do think where 10 yrs ago something like this would be very cost prohibitive today you could build something very impressive for the price of say a top end laptop. Something quiet beneficial and usable for far far less.

I would love to hear anything you have on ideas or "in's and out's" of the "automotive PC" world. I am planning on working up a full system on my current Excursion project.

What have you found are the best encolsures powersupples and motherboards for these applications?
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  #32  
Old 07-29-2014, 03:12 AM
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Ive had 3 makes of in car video recorders over the years, the first 2 makes were just junk with no reliable way of getting the recorded video off the devise.

My latest in car and truck, yep 2 of them is the Smarty BX 1000, the are reliable with good quality dowloadable video, the video is a sinch to get off the devise unlike some.

Made in Sth Korea so its all good stuff.
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  #33  
Old 07-29-2014, 07:10 AM
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Originally Posted by TARM View Post
I would love to hear anything you have on ideas or "in's and out's" of the "automotive PC" world. I am planning on working up a full system on my current Excursion project.

What have you found are the best encolsures powersupples and motherboards for these applications?
That would be somewhat of a hijack... even though it partially applies here.

empiretc - Car PCs here, or a dedicated thread?
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  #34  
Old 07-29-2014, 08:32 AM
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There are dash cam apps for Android phones that are pretty good. I have a windshield mount for my Thunderbolt. I used a dash cam app for my trip to OC, just in case anything crazy happened as I passed by Baltimore - crazy driver hotspot. Don't remember the app I used but I remember it was free and it worked fairly well.
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  #35  
Old 07-29-2014, 09:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thomabb View Post
There are dash cam apps for Android phones that are pretty good. I have a windshield mount for my Thunderbolt. I used a dash cam app for my trip to OC, just in case anything crazy happened as I passed by Baltimore - crazy driver hotspot. Don't remember the app I used but I remember it was free and it worked fairly well.

there are several different apps- a lot of free ones, and most people have an extra phone laying around. that is one option.

like stated earlier, though, want a permanent setup. after reading several forums and reviews, the g1w seems like a winner. especially for the price.
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  #36  
Old 07-29-2014, 10:57 AM
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Ive used a British company, SmartWitness, in my company cars for the past 6 years. They have awesome camera's and great customer service. Camera's sit in hot cars in the south all day and have never had a problem overheating. Their new camera's will even email any "incident" that happens using cell phone technology. All 8 cars I have are using an older version of SVC404E with a monitor added and all the telematics. Attached is a link for their produce catalog. If you want the US distributors name and #, send me a PM
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  #37  
Old 01-03-2015, 02:29 PM
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Good Afternoon All!

Its been about 6 months since the latest posting, so I am wondering if there is anything new on the market, or if any of you have any additional experience with dash cams.

In addition to the 'basics', I want something that has low light capability, motion detect and GPS. Preferably something I can also hard wire into the truck.

I don't care so much if it has a monitor just so long as I can USB connect it to my laptop or GS4 to view the data.

Thanks.

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  #38  
Old 01-03-2015, 02:36 PM
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I have my eye on this one, read the reviews on the net about it, it seems alright.
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  #39  
Old 01-03-2015, 06:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skscci View Post
...I want something that has low light capability, motion detect and GPS....
Motion sense would be park mode. The Powerucc PANORAMA ⅡS has everything you're looking for and is highly rated by reviewers, but it takes a couple of Buck$Zooka rounds (just under $200) to put it in your cab.
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  #40  
Old 01-03-2015, 07:28 PM
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I have an update for the BlackVue DR550. It didn't like the Texas heat. The rear camera keep dieing so it went back to Amazon. Slightly less annoying, it also had an issue with parking mode. I could never find a good balance for motion detection where it would start recording if someone walked by but not record if the wind made the leafs on a tree move.

I'll probably try another camera later this year but not till it starts getting hot.
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  #41  
Old 01-03-2015, 09:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tugly View Post
Motion sense would be park mode. The Powerucc PANORAMA ⅡS has everything you're looking for and is highly rated by reviewers, but it takes a couple of Buck$Zooka rounds (just under $200) to put it in your cab.
PLUS the GPS PLUS the additional memory. Closer to $300.
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  #42  
Old 01-04-2015, 04:29 AM
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I'm sorry bud, I fell asleep at the switch there. You are right, the GPS is an add-on - but that unit is the rockin' night vision one with everything else on your list.

If you can compromise a bit with night vision, you can save some money with the unit suggested by JSchuricht (there are 5 options on this page): [
LINK LINK
]

I had one of these in my hand yesterday: [LINK]
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  #43  
Old 01-04-2015, 08:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tugly View Post
If you can compromise a bit with night vision, you can save some money with the unit suggested by JSchuricht (there are 5 options on this page): [LINK]

I had one of these in my hand yesterday: [LINK]
Good Morning Tugly!
No worries!
Thanks for the links.
I have been looking at the Ambarella and so far it looks like the best bang for the buck.

Regards,
Steve.
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  #44  
Old 01-04-2015, 09:53 AM
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If the camera's vision is wider than your vision, then the evidence from the camera may do more harm to your case than good, if presented to prove the other car "came out of nowhere."

An ultra wide angle lens could show movement that you didn't see in your peripheral vision in real life, and make you appear as if you were not paying attention. On the opposite side of the spectrum, a lens with a narrow field of view would make the other car appear as if coming out of nowhere even moreso than it actually seemed in real life. Finding a camera that emulates the peripheral vision we have is tricky, because part of the problem is camera placement.

Dash cameras are often mounted to the windshield, or the dashboard, both of which are 4 to 5 feet FORWARD of the driver's head, providing a more forward vision that is unobstructed by the outside rearview mirrors or the A pillars.

When the other side plays back your own video in a deposition or court hearing, you might end up looking like a dork for not braking sooner... when your own camera revealed such an obvious "hazard" developing before your very eyes... if you weren't so negligent for not paying attention. Only in reality, the hazard didn't develop before your eyes, it was only visible on the playback screen due to the wide angle view and forward placement of the camera's eye.

They don't make "headrest cams" that mount near the driver's head that would mimic the same sightline limitations that most driver's must deal with when their seat is positioned further back in the vehicle than the windshield or grille are, and where A pillars and rear view mirrors, as well as long high hoods can conspire to limit the peripheral and street views a driver has.

In real life, we deal with it, and get it done. But once you start recording it, then remember the evidence that is preserved is the evidence that the camera saw, not necessarily what you were able to see.

Something to think about.
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  #45  
Old 01-04-2015, 10:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Y2KW57 View Post
If the camera's vision is wider than your vision, then the evidence from the camera may do more harm to your case than good, if presented to prove the other car "came out of nowhere."

In real life, we deal with it, and get it done. But once you start recording it, then remember the evidence that is preserved is the evidence that the camera saw, not necessarily what you were able to see.

Something to think about.
Thanks for some things to think about.
I have an overhead console as well as a sunroof.
I am thinking that maybe I can mount the camera in a more 'driver-like' location and see the differences between the views.
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Old 01-04-2015, 10:59 AM
 
 
 
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