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VFII Redline dashcam

Discussion in 'VF Holden Commodore (2013 - 2017)' started by SARRAS, Apr 11, 2019.

  1. SARRAS

    SARRAS Active Member

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    It seems to be a bit mad that you cannot tap into the existing front camera on these cars for 'dashcam' purposes, but failing that I've bought a Garmin 65 which seems to be quite a good piece of kit. Hardwiring to the VF though, with the battery in the boot? Hmmmmm…. Any comments?
     
  2. stooge

    stooge Well-Known Member

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  3. Skylarking

    Skylarking Well-Known Member

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    The Camaro has the option to ditch the lane departure warning feature while keeping the camera and instead utilising it for a front view video feature that works with their data logger.

    It should have been a pee in the hand for Holden to access that feature and make it available on the last of the VF’s.

    We’ve always been a backwater even when we had vehicle manufacturing within the country.
     
  4. SARRAS

    SARRAS Active Member

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    The park protect feature requires always on power where's the cig lighter style socket in the dash only works with the ignition running
     
  5. snortings

    snortings Active Member

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    I've got the Garmin 55 as I preferred the clearer picture (1440p vs 1080p) than the wider angle. Wide angle doesn't mean much if you can't read number plates in my opinion :D

    I too have always wanted to hardwire it into the car, as apparently there is a parking feature of the Garmin 55/65 and you need some sort of kit. But even if I had the kit, I wouldn't know how to wire it into the car :p At the moment I just have a cable hanging down the middle of the car and runs along the side of the passenger seat into the glovebox socket.
     
  6. kleanphil

    kleanphil Active Member

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    Most hard wire kits have plenty of wire to reach to the fuse box , I have a wagon with fuse box in the rear and it reaches no worry's , just a matter of running the wire around the head lining . I used the front 12 volt socket fuse as its accessory run, the rear one ( 12 volt socket ) in the wagon is constant
     
  7. SARRAS

    SARRAS Active Member

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    Its called a parking mode cable and it includes a device to prevent the camera from draining the main car battery below 'start' capability.

    https://buy.garmin.com/en-AU/AU/p/587564
     
  8. lordsnipe

    lordsnipe Member

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    The DOC connector has both ACC and 12v always on power. Connector is behind the glovebox. Spade terminals work well.
     
  9. kleanphil

    kleanphil Active Member

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    if your serious about using a dash cam in parking mode a front camera is only going to catch 25% of all potential damage , I would recommend at least a 2 channel dash cam or 2 single channel so you have a front and a rear camera , then you have a chance of catching 50 to 60% of all incidents but then your using a fair amount of power . I don't like the power magic pro as it relies on using the car battery and turning off the cams when the battery runs down to a certain level .
    I personally have 2 Thinkware 2 channel cams so I have a front , rear and left / right cameras and I use the cellink neo battery addons that charge while the car is running and the cameras only draw from them and not the car battery when in parking mode . All of this becomes quite expensive when you want it to be affective but if it catches atleast 1 culprit then it can pay for it's self .
    Heres a few hit's on my car . I was hit 5 time's in 8 months , that's why I painted my car hi-vis colours and got 4 cams .


     
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  10. dgp

    dgp Well-Known Member

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  11. Skylarking

    Skylarking Well-Known Member

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    @kleanphil it looked like the guy in the last video had his phone in his right hand :oops:

    Did you make any claims and how did the insurance company treat the video? As the vehicle could be identified, did you get out of paying excess? And did you report the first two drivers to police as i guess they simply took off (can't identify driver - pay excess?)?

    Still debating with myself whether its worth getting dashcam but seeing your video's, i'd think YES.
     
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  12. Dayvo

    Dayvo Because i can

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    I bought the dual socket to plug in the dash cam and gps
     
  13. kleanphil

    kleanphil Active Member

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    Hi @Skylarking , the first video shows a neighbour of the house we were working on reversing to allow a semi with bricks to get into the cul de sac , the driver of the semi had to come and tell me my car had been hit and I had to approach the neighbour when he returned from his trip , he wasn't going to fess up to it and tried to fob it off as minor , TBH , if the semi driver didn't tell me I may never of known immediately as external damage was very slight , but it had bent the bar .
    The second was also at a jobsite , we were all working on the scaffold next to the road and literally saw it happen , he woulda done a runner if we hadn't seen it , but the vid had the rego if he had , it was his girl friends car and wasn't insured .
    The last guy followed me to my exit on the highway which was only a k or so and gave me all his details and all was good , he was in a rush to get home for a beer .
    Two hits that i didn't get on cam because the first cam I got I had bricked by using an un recommended SD card , this was at another jobsite (to name drop it was Mike and Carlene from " The Block " 's house they were rono'ing ) The termite guy reversed out of the driveway into the side of the car damaging the rear driver side door , wheel arch and rear quarter , he was descent enough to front up and tell me what he had done .
    The other was some DH in a pub car park who opened his door into my rear driver side door , I never found him or had vid because of the bricked cam but was lucky enough that he had hit the door the termite guy had damaged and had it repaired when they repaired the termy guy's damage.
    All of this damage was covered by insurance with no excess to pay and never had to use any of the videos as evidence but it's nice to have some peace of mind .
    Not every one have to park in busy building site areas , but for me I think there worth every penny .
    As soon as I had bought my mother her new car I fitted 4 cams straight away , she does the school run for my sister , enuff said there I think .

    Parking mode for me is a must and so battery packs also are a must as I need atleast 8 hour worth of battery power to run the cams and not run my battery down
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2019
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  14. SARRAS

    SARRAS Active Member

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    Okay so how expensive and who did the install for you?
     
  15. Zehq

    Zehq Active Member

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    Jesus mate you've got the shittest luck.
     
  16. Skylarking

    Skylarking Well-Known Member

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    @kleanphil thanks for the rundown.

    Sounds like you’ve been lucky with your bad luck if that makes sense :p

    Do any of these dash cams in park mode allow for triggering an alarm to attract some attention and or flash a LED to let you know it’s recorded an incident?
     
  17. kleanphil

    kleanphil Active Member

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    lol , no , I was extremely lucky because for each repair that got done some minor damage scrapes and bumps even though very minor , I knew they were there got repaired . I even got one of my mags painted green by one of the insurance claims as I managed to line up some gutter rash with the side damage I got when I took the insurance photo.
    Holden VF SS-V Series 2 . First hit on my car (3).jpg


    Ok firstly keep in mind that I'm very OCD so I had to go the full hog with the best , so the cams I got were 2 x 2 channel Thinkware f770 at about $600 or so each , then I got a Cellink-B battery pack at $280 with expansion pack at $230 . I installed it my self , there is only 3 wires to connect , 1 goes to an acc supply the other goes to main power and the 3rd is an earth , too easy really .

    You can get cheaper 2 channel cams with parking mode and for most just nipping out to the shops and stuff 1 battery pack is enough .
    I know most probably think the battery packs are a bit exy , but running your car battery flat or killing it is just as expensive
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2019
  18. kleanphil

    kleanphil Active Member

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    @Skylarking my cams do have a couple of flashing led modes but I don't like to use them but I do have these on my door pillars
    Dash cam in use.jpg
     
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  19. SARRAS

    SARRAS Active Member

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    The battery is an issue as it seems that they take an hour of running to recharge after a 'night' of park and use, which would be a problem with me as many times the daily commute is very short, certainly not a hour of running per day. Also, is your rear window tinted?

    Also, where are the 4 cams in this setup? Front left and right and rear left and right?
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2019
  20. tommy_z

    tommy_z Active Member

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    As a recent uptaker of dash cams and a complete idiot when it comes to electronics, let me share some my experiences while I ummed and ahhed before finally deciding to fit it into my Calais V, and then pretty much straight away when I got my Director:

    1. Thread linked by dgp in post 10, and this one: https://forums.justcommodores.com.au/threads/vf-commodore-doc-connector.227006/ were the two that I used to gain enough confidence to install this myself so take a read of those threads. :)
    I only know how to do basic soldering and I am sh!t scared of damaging anything in my car, let alone removing trim. If you don't feel comfortable fitting it yourself, installation details tend to be found at dash cam retailers (eg. Autobarn, and those in Sydney such as Strathfield Car Radio), and it's around $200. If you want to give it a go, I as a newbie still didn't find this hard - you have all the pics on dgp to go by, and I'm happy to post photos of my install too if anyone needs more guidance. You just need daylight and patience!
    I think what gives us VF Commodore owners a huge advantage is the DOC connector. That gives all of the power outputs we need if you were to hard wire this to the car's battery instead of needing to go to the fuse box and getting wires out of that. It's at a convenient and accessible location that makes the wiring much easier, and it's all hidden away and you don't need to be drilling holes.

    2. Videos like the ones by kleanphil shows how important it is to have dash cams... it's very common in Korea and China, and now getting quite common in Australia. A good insurance policy for the times when you don't know what's going on. The other thing is that we decide to keep our VF Commodores as assets for the long term, so fitting a dash cam is a great way for protection. As he said, 2 channel is definitely the way to go (it adds only 5-10 mins installation time!!) - especially if you get rear ended at an intersection and that driver does a runner and doesn't necessarily come into the view of your front camera, well you're not going to have that footage recorded!

    3. Thinkware and Blackvue are the probably the best, but the priciest manufacturers out there. If you wait for an Autobarn 30% off dash cam sale, that will bring the price right down (it happens around 2 times a year). Garmins are great too and I have a 55 in the old VX Commodore but have never bothered with doing a parking mode on that. The quality of it, especially at night, isn't as clear as the Blackvue DR750S I have.
    Note that Thinkware and Blackvue dash cams will likely require 'better' SD cards than your stock standard cheap ones which you could use in a Garmin or cheaper dash cam brand, and thus the outlay will be more expensive. I went with 128GB SD cards to make sure I'd have at minimum most of a day's recordings if I had to leave my car outside for the day. 16 and 32GB are definitely not useful at all for parking mode if you know your car is parked for the day.

    4. Some people have a preference for a separate battery fitted in the car to power the dash cam during parking mode rather than use the Power Magic Pro which links up to the car's battery ... my preference is to use the car's battery and use the Power Magic Pro. Why? Provided your car is driven at least once every day / two days (and if not, you use an appropriate trickle charger), the battery's health will always be strong and be in that 14V vicinity. The Power Magic Pro gives you options to have the dash cam power off either at 12.5V or 12V, and after a certain time. I have set mine up to record at infinity hours, and 12V cutout. It will take a couple of days of non-stop dash cam operations in a parked car to run your battery down to 12V (which I highly doubt will occur in 99.9% of our circumstances) and you'll still be able to start your car with the volts.
    A replacement factory AC Delco battery for our cars is around $175. A Cellink NEO internal battery which at the most can do around 8 hours at full charge, is $320+ from Ebay. If my car battery dies, it would be far cheaper to replace that than to get a new Cellink NEO... and the Power Magic Pro also lets you cut off at say, 12 hours. So even if your voltage doesn't go down to 12.5V or 12V, it will still cut out. It's very hard to go wrong with the device. I have had my Calais V parked out at a hotel at 6pm, returned to it the next morning at 10am, and she was still recording away, and at startup the trip computer has a battery voltage reading of 13.1 Volts. All good. :)
    Also if you don't drive your car much (say, your commute is 15-30mins one way) then the Cellink NEO isn't going to charge up fully to let the dash cam record for many hours.

    5. You also need to have two considerations for parking mode:
    * Australian summer. Unfortunately even my BlackVue 750-2ch at 70 degree cutout can't stand an Australian summer's day parked under the sun after a few hours. So be aware that parking mode may be useless regardless of dash cam when it's summer time. And that's with the sunshade up and tinted windows at darkest legal using 3M Crystalline.
    * Front windshield sunshade. You won't be able to use those standard sunshades anymore at $15 each, as the silver or other colours are too reflective when you put it up on the windscreen. The dash cam will just show you a reflection of the sunshade. The Covercraft one, at $149, is extremely expensive, but is designed to fit the windscreen and gives you enough room around the rear-view-mirror to not only mount your dash cam but to also let it breathe. The colour is silver and isn't reflective, so when light comes down onto your windshield, the dash cam still records the outside scene clearly. https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/2013-2017-HSV-Holden-VF-GEN-F-w-o-Logo-Custom-Heatshield-by-Covercraft/254063612759?fits=Model:Commodore|Plat_Gen:VF&epid=4027907801&hash=item3b275f1357:g1MAAOSwV1Vb16cR&frcectupt=true

    6. I let people know my dashcam is recording with the flashing LED and Wifi-on lighting. Sort of gives a good warning of people around if they see a flashing white light on your screen. You can turn that feature off if you want. The Blackvues will tell you 'An impact was detected during parking mode' if you did get something of note come up, and you set its sensitivity level through the app. Mine is set to the fullest sensitivity so even those loud Harley Davidsons going past will get picked up as an impact. :p
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2019
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