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I don't know how anyone could give this 5 stars. Sure, all of the features that this camera advertises are technically extant, but only in the worst possible ways. Yes, it records front and rear-facing video to a memory card that can be imported to a computer. Yes, it has settings for how it records video, and it can even take snapshots. The front-facing video is technically 1080p and the rear-facing video is technically 720p, with the caveat that the rear camera uses an analogue connection. And it does come with an off-the-shelf, retail 32gb MicroSD card which the manufacturer only recently started crudely stuffing into their product packaging... While all of this is true, the manufacturer's description comes so close to lying without actually being dishonest that I’m convinced that they’re intentionally deceiving their customers for fast profit in a lucrative market.
To explain,I’ll put my review in the form of a short story.
I’ve had this camera for about 3 weeks. As soon as I got it I spent a morning installing it and then went for a test drive with it. I should have done this first because the video quality is so terrible that it would never, under any circumstances, have the fidelity to show other vehicle’s license plates. If I hadn’t already spent time installing it, I would have sent it back right away. So I opted to use the 12v power outlet instead of hard-wiring it, knowing that some of the memory card’s space would be wasted because my truck allows power to the outlet for about an hour after I kill the engine. This will be important later.
So from then on I didn’t notice any other problems. I even “locked” a few videos so I could review them later. And so yesterday was pretty much a typical work day for me. I drove to work and even I locked a video during my drive. I worked a long shift and then afterwords I drove to the grocery store. I spent about 40 minutes shopping, and then sat in the parking lot for a few minutes on a phone call. Then I drove home and parked in front of my building. Tonight I decided to check the videos that I had saved, but when I opened the SD card on my computer, what I found had me pretty frustrated!
The first thing I noticed was how few video files from either camera there were; only about 2 hours of footage from the front-facing camera! So right off the bat, 32gb of storage probably won’t be nearly enough for most people’s needs. The video files are just too large (i.e., cheap video encoding and compression). I honestly expected that from such a cheap camera. But you may already have guessed the next major problem…
I’m still using the 12v outlet for power, so with only 2 hours of stored video, over half of the footage on my memory card was of parking lots. The worst part is that, in one typical day of driving, the camera had already overwritten 2 out of 3 of my trips. It lost both my trip to work and the short drive to the grocery store!
Fine… at least I can easily lock videos at any time so that they won’t be overwritten… right?
NOPE... The final deal breaker for this discount, off-brand, big-box-store-electronics-section-rip-off was that it does NOT properly lock or write-protect video files! Now, maybe mine is defective, but I have a feeling that the manufacturer knows about this defect. I’ve re-read the manual a dozen times and tried researching the issue online. But I know I’m using the lock feature correctly because it IS locking the rear-facing, videos! I have all of those videos right here in front of me. I can even hear the exact moment that I push the button in the video! I don’t think this is an issue that I can fix. How freaking useless is that!?
There are other issues that I won’t waste your time with, and I could go on about how the manufacturer uses every trick in the book to skirt the lines of false-advertizing. And I cannot comment on the GPS functionality. It doesn't come with the gps attachment, I don't really have an interest in the feature, and I'm not willing to waste my money at this point.
This is my first dash-cam, and I’m glad I’ve learned a few things in the process, but that's really the only positive outcome of this purchase. I will definitely be replacing this camera with something better.
There is absolutely nothing positive about this product. Spent few hours hiding all wires for nothing, wasted time. Front camera overexposed, rear camera blur, horrible picture and worse night vision. Stay away don't waste your time on this POS.
Item is not as listed. Don’t know how this item has so many 5 star ratings bc the image is very grainy; definitely cannot see license plates as advertised. The camera cannot adapt to changes in light so it comes out blurry and hard to see. Sound quality from the mic is non existent. The motion detect and collision detect doesn’t work. It won’t even show up on the screen. The camera I got could not program settings, I got 24 hrs divided into separate 3 min low resolution videos which If I get into a car accident would be hell to watch. Set up took me 30 mins to put together; part of which requires you to rip into your car to install a stick that doesn’t work. I never post comments but this one really pissed me off bc not only did I have to rip my car apart to install and hurt my hand in the process but to find out this crap quality afterwards was the icing on the top.
Horrible customer service, email them several times and their answer was to look it up on the F A Q, or to look it up, great, thanks. Also, if you want to see the video, you have to take out the memory card and look at it on your computer, there's no app for it.