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Old 11-14-2019, 10:51 PM
Paul in Qatar is offline
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We Need Built-in Dash Cams


I am doing my Christmas shopping online. For some reason I am looking at a page of dash cams. These are the sort of thing that make the news when some crazy policeman pulls a gun.


They are cool, but they all seem to be a but too obtrusive in the passenger compartment. Wires dangle, suction cups stick on windshields, screens poke out in odd places. Car companies ought to have a built-in dash cam option.


On the other hand, I would not buy one. I do not like gadgets in my car. Still, I bet they would sell.
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Old 11-15-2019, 12:02 AM
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In a similar vein, pretty much, if not all new cars have backup cameras. Why can’t they record full-time in case of being rear-ended?
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Old 11-15-2019, 12:14 AM
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Tesla is already there.

Tesla Sentry Cams

There have already been scores of videos where the car has recorded people keying Teslas for 'reasons' where the offender had been caught.
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Old 11-15-2019, 12:25 AM
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My rearview mirror has power so I plug in my dashcam with an invisicord. No visible wires, though I did ziptie the cord to the mirror.

You should get one. I've never used a fire extinguisher either, but it's nice to have.
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Old 11-15-2019, 09:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul in Qatar View Post
For some reason I am looking at a page of dash cams. These are the sort of thing that make the news when some crazy policeman pulls a gun.
In my experience (of watching the news/youtube videos), no. Dashcams face forwards. While you can buy a 360 camera & make it a dash cam, most dedicated dashcams only have in the range of 135-140 of visibility, meaning basically out the front window. The police interaction is typically from the side, so the videos you're seing are either on a vehicle occupant's handheld cellphone or on the cop car's fixed dashcam, where the cop car is parked behind the vehicle where the action is taking place.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul in Qatar View Post
They are cool, but they all seem to be a but too obtrusive in the passenger compartment. Wires dangle, suction cups stick on windshields, screens poke out in odd places. Car companies ought to have a built-in dash cam option.
Wires can be tucked into the headliner/down the A-post & hidden from view & some of the smaller models can be placed behind the rearview mirror making them barely noticeable in the vehicle.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gotpasswords View Post
In a similar vein, pretty much, if not all new cars have backup cameras. Why cant they record full-time in case of being rear-ended?
The problem is that they're pretty much useless at night due to camera optics. The bright light from the headlights mostly obscures vehicle details like front license plates (if vehicle is from a state that requires them) or even make/model/color of the striking vehicle.
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Old 11-15-2019, 10:49 AM
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I'm pretty sure that government regulators required backup camera as of a couple of years ago, presumably because it reduced accidents. I don't think there is any requirement for dashcams, but I would think some of the car makers would offer them either as a standard feature or a dealer-installed option (one that could be very profitable). Lots of people take dealer options, even if they're overpriced relative to the actual cost. At the very least, there could be a power port designed into the rear-view mirror
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Old 11-15-2019, 10:54 AM
excavating (for a mind) is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spiderman View Post
In my experience (of watching the news/youtube videos), no. Dashcams face forwards. While you can buy a 360 camera & make it a dash cam, most dedicated dashcams only have in the range of 135-140 of visibility, meaning basically out the front window. The police interaction is typically from the side, so the videos you're seing are either on a vehicle occupant's handheld cellphone or on the cop car's fixed dashcam, where the cop car is parked behind the vehicle where the action is taking place.
One or more cameras would easily solve this problem. If they were built into the design of the vehicle, it would be a cheap and easy thing to do.
Quote:
Wires can be tucked into the headliner/down the A-post & hidden from view & some of the smaller models can be placed behind the rearview mirror making them barely noticeable in the vehicle.
True, but completely unnecessary if the cameras are built into the design of the vehicle.

In regards to just activating and utilizing the existing back-up cameras already installed in new vehicles:
Quote:
The problem is that they're pretty much useless at night due to camera optics. The bright light from the headlights mostly obscures vehicle details like front license plates (if vehicle is from a state that requires them) or even make/model/color of the striking vehicle.
These are all problems that could be fixed by use of filters and/or additional sensors or software patches.

The idea is past its time to be implemented. The cost is minimal and the return is likely to be positive for just about every vehicle over its lifetime.

As always, the auto industry is going to come back with "cost". Funny, putting a $150 backup camera on the vehicle is nothing, but adding a USB port and a $25 flash drive to it to provide a 24-hour (or more) record is cost prohibitive? Of course, the $150 backup camera only costs the car company $50, but the USB port and flash drive would cost the consumer $1000.
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Old 11-15-2019, 11:29 AM
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I just installed a backup cam on my 98 Corolla last Sunday.

All the wiring is hidden except for less than 2" from the top of the new "mirror" and the headliner. Routing from thru the headliner and down the A post was the easiest part of the wire routing.

The "mirror" is extra wide so it interferes a bit with the visors. I have to unclip the visor, move around the mirror and then clip it again. No fast flip downs anymore.

It's not a great view like I had hoped but I'm still adjusting the settings.

It's also a front cam with recording capabilities which I have no interest in. And there is no way to change the stupid default of forward view. Hey, I'm already looking forward, okay? I want to see what's behind me before I put it into reverse. You tap to get one of 4 views. The one I want is the 4th, of course.

I would much prefer if the screen was in the dash but there is no space to put one. And a suction cup setup is definitely not for me.
  #9  
Old 11-15-2019, 11:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spiderman View Post
In my experience (of watching the news/youtube videos), no. Dashcams face forwards. While you can buy a 360 camera & make it a dash cam, most dedicated dashcams only have in the range of 135-140 of visibility, meaning basically out the front window...
You can get 360 cameras as a one-piece or multiple cams that feed a single recording device. And they're not expensive.
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Old 11-15-2019, 01:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by excavating (for a mind) View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spiderman View Post
Wires can be tucked into the headliner/down the A-post & hidden from view & some of the smaller models can be placed behind the rearview mirror making them barely noticeable in the vehicle.
True, but completely unnecessary if the cameras are built into the design of the vehicle.
Whether done at the factory or aftermarket, that's how the wires are run.

Quote:
Originally Posted by excavating (for a mind) View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spiderman View Post
The problem is that they're pretty much useless at night due to camera optics. The bright light from the headlights mostly obscures vehicle details like front license plates (if vehicle is from a state that requires them) or even make/model/color of the striking vehicle.
These are all problems that could be fixed by use of filters and/or additional sensors or software patches.
Not easily. A sensor can adjust for bright light (headlights) or dim light (grill) but not both. Given both cars are moving, possibly at different speeds & possibly thru curves the area that is light vs. dark is constantly changing. Camera sensors don't do that. A single exposure is either under or over exposed. One can take multiple exposures & blend them in post to get a well balanced exposure but not from a single frame.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Musicat View Post
You can get 360 cameras as a one-piece or multiple cams that feed a single recording device. And they're not expensive.
It's not expense, it's placement. A single 360 camera with ideal placement for the front windshield will have 'tunnel vision' to look out the back window. You're much better off with two 180 (or more degree) cameras, one at the windshield & one at the rear window. This means no interior footage.

Also, do you as a driver want an inward facing camera on you? Do you ever look at your phone? Look down at the radio/climate controls? Eat in the car? Over at your passenger? Do you really want it recorded that you were inattentive in the split second before something happens? I don't. Likewise, I opted for a dashcam w/o GPS in it despite already owning GPS cameras. I don't want to make it easy to ascertain that I may have been over the speed limit.
  #11  
Old 11-15-2019, 01:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spiderman
(about backup cameras)
The problem is that they're pretty much useless at night due to camera optics. The bright light from the headlights mostly obscures vehicle details like front license plates (if vehicle is from a state that requires them) or even make/model/color of the striking vehicle.
Doesn't change that they're still useful during the day. And even if you can't get a plate, you've probably got enough of an image to tell that you were hit and have a defense against them saying you backed up.

It's already installed and wired, the video signal is already there. Shouldn't be terribly hard to loop it to an SD card.
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Old 11-15-2019, 03:45 PM
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My state, like a few others, doesn't have front plates. If you're lucky the person who rear ends you will have a "plate" for their favorite college team. So that narrows it down to a few million people. Even a "Go Dawgs!" plate still leaves 2 major college fan groups to sort thru.
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Old 11-15-2019, 06:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Projammer View Post
Tesla is already there.

Tesla Sentry Cams

There have already been scores of videos where the car has recorded people keying Teslas for 'reasons' where the offender had been caught.
Teslae have, if I'm not mistaken, 4 cameras around the car. Front and back and I think the other two are in wheel wells for viewing the sides. I'm really surprised other high end makes have not copied this idea.
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Old 11-30-2019, 12:07 AM
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One reason BMW and Mercedes don't might be because in neighboring Austria it's illegal to have built-in cameras in your car, subject to a 10K Euro fine. (Maybe Germany as well, but I haven't heard of it.) They consider the privacy of random passersby more important than your ability to identify vandals or even prove yourself without fault in an accident.
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Old 12-01-2019, 01:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Spectre of Pithecanthropus View Post
One reason BMW and Mercedes don't might be because in neighboring Austria it's illegal to have built-in cameras in your car, subject to a 10K Euro fine. (Maybe Germany as well, but I haven't heard of it.) They consider the privacy of random passersby more important than your ability to identify vandals or even prove yourself without fault in an accident.
I dont have a cite, but Ive heard anecdotally that privacy (or more accurately, liability) issues are the main reasons that car manufacturers dont build dash cams into their cars. I agree that its an obvious feature to offer.
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Old 12-01-2019, 05:44 PM
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I don't want my driving habits and destinations recorded and subject to search by a governmental agency.

Nor do I want that data to be used as a way to assess my insurance rates.

I also don't want to be jailed for 'evidence tampering' should I chose to delete any data and recording.

Last edited by Sigene; 12-01-2019 at 05:45 PM.
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Old 12-01-2019, 08:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Sigene View Post
I don't want my driving habits and destinations recorded and subject to search by a governmental agency.

Nor do I want that data to be used as a way to assess my insurance rates.

I also don't want to be jailed for 'evidence tampering' should I chose to delete any data and recording.
Too bad. In the near future we can expect our vehicle data to be wirelessly uploaded to The Authorities to facilitate insurance, tickets, tolls, taxes, etc. Expect our Authorities to sell that data (as many DMVs do now) so our destinations will be no secret to marketers, investigators, hackers, thieves, terrorists, etc.

The era of Ubiquitous Surveillance has barely begun. Tampering is beyond your reach.
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Old 12-01-2019, 08:29 PM
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The other thing is that if you're driving around with a smartphone or GPS in the car, your "driving habits and destinations" can be recorded and subject to search.
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Old 12-02-2019, 12:18 AM
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My state, like a few others, doesn't have front plates. If you're lucky the person who rear ends you will have a "plate" for their favorite college team. So that narrows it down to a few million people. Even a "Go Dawgs!" plate still leaves 2 major college fan groups to sort thru.
Rear-facing cams aren't really for the purpose of finding out who rear-ended you. They can sometimes be used for that, but it's a very minor useage.

Their major purpose is to protect you against fraud. If some sleazeball rear-ends you, but claims that YOU backed up and hit THEM, a rear-facing camera is handy insurance to show the police who's lying.
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Old 12-02-2019, 11:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by excavating (for a mind) View Post
The idea is past its time to be implemented. The cost is minimal and the return is likely to be positive for just about every vehicle over its lifetime.
What model dash cam do you have installed in your car?

Last edited by Bear_Nenno; 12-02-2019 at 11:39 AM.
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