Dash Cams – Chipsets, Sensors, Loop Recording, Parking Mode, Wide Angle, 1080P – How Do You Choose?

Dash cameras are fast becoming a must have in today’s driving environment. Aggressive and careless driving as well as more and more common incidents of road rage make an investment in a really good car DVR a wise decision.

Another consideration is that insurance companies now tell their clients never to admit fault so it becomes your word against the other party’s and if they have someone else with them and you don’t, you are going to lose a lot of money. Similarly if you not an experienced driver, or one of your children is involved in an accident you will need hard evidence to back up your version of what happened.

In other words, buy a dashboard camera it may well save you a lot of money and stress.

Unfortunately choosing the best dash cam is not that easy because often cameras that have the same body may have very different working parts.That’s because there are only a few major camera body manufacturers and they sell to hundreds of vendors.

Generally when buying dash cams you get what you pay for so start by ignoring the really cheap cameras. I have seen dash cams advertised for $16! and that is just impossible. Buy one of these and your money will probably just disappear. Personally I wouldn’t even consider a camera under $100.

So how do you choose a dash cam that will provide good quality images that can be used as evidence if you are unfortunate enough to be involved in a traffic incident.

Here’s a few pointers to look for:

* Look for a model with dual wide angle cameras to give you front and rear coverage.

* Check to see if the camera has a high end chipset and sensor combination. These are expensive items so most vendors will not tell you what the specs are for their cameras. My family’s cameras all have Mstar/OV2710 chipset/sensor combinations but there are one or two other good combinations around (none of them are cheap). Lesser combinations will not give you the same quality images, especially at night.

* Preferably the unit has an MOV video format, not the older AVI.

* Camera should have parking mode which activates the camera in case of a bump while you are not in your car.

* Motion detection.

* Loop recording.

* ADAS – driver assistance will warn you if your car gets to close to another or if you are drifting out of your lane.

* G-Sensor – freezes the frame and stores it in case of an accident.

* Warranty – at least 12 months.

* Look for evidence that the vendor has a website with contact details.

* Choose a vendor with good support, if the description has examples of poor English, it’s usually a 3rd world based vendor (often not even a manufacturer but a reseller) and experience has shown that if that’s the case, it can be very difficult to get support.

Reviews

Used to be the case that if a dashboard camera had good reviews on one of the major selling platforms you could rely on it being a decent buy. Nowadays you need to be very wary of this because we have seen more and more examples of new listings hitting the market with 20, 30 or even 40, 5 star reviews from the start. Rorting of the review system has become endemic, in fact you can see adverts on social media and internet service sites where people are offering to provide completely bogus reviews for very little money.

In Summary

Buying a car dashboard camera is a very wise decision but do your homework and purchase a high spec one from a vendor you can identify.

Dick Aronson is the author of 50 or so articles on business, health and finance.
He has owned and managed a variety of businesses and has worked as a high level consultant in a number of countries. His interest in dashboard cameras is the result of having twice been the victim of drivers who ran red lights. Like many of us he didn’t think it would happen to him but the resulting wrangle with insurance companies after the first incident convinced him to install a dash cam in his car.
Finding it difficult to figure out just what was on offer in the way of dash cams he decided to have one manufactured to his own high specification needs.

Everything You Need to Know About a Jeep JK

If you are enthusiastic about Jeeps love reading up about them, you might have often wondered what ‘JK’ stands for. Simply put, JK is a code that internationally famous brand Jeep uses to identify some of its vehicles.

Why the Code ‘JK’?

The code ‘JK’ has not been just assigned by Jeep without any kind of thought. Jeep has been creating the best off-roading vehicles for a long time now, and their vast range of vehicles are not designed all the same. To help them, and more importantly their customer to identify their vehicles better in case they have a requirement for certain parts of the vehicle, the code ‘JK’ was assigned to all the vehicles that were manufactured between 2007-2017.

The code is also backed up by the vehicle design specifications that Jeep have followed during the manufacture of their JK Wranglers. Most JK vehicles manufactured by Jeep look quite similar to each other in their original form. Of course, there might be differences between a regular JK Wrangler and a heavily customized one, but in essence and in shape, all JK Jeeps look alike.

Advantages of the ‘JK’ Coding System

Easier to Find Parts: Many other vehicle manufacturers often go with complicated coding systems that make it difficult to search for their parts in the market. It doesn’t matter if you go to an established store in your neighborhood, or search online for the parts you need; what good is any of it if you cannot identify the parts that you really need? Four-wheeler details are quite intricate, and you can’t really take a chance on parts that would not fit your Jeep, can you?
Time Saver at Stores: When you go to a store that sells vehicle parts, you might often have to provide the storekeepers a ton of details before they exactly understand what you precisely need. However, with the JK coding system used by Jeep, it isn’t any problem if you happen to own a Jeep JK model. Simply say ‘JK’, and the storekeeper can start helping you without wasting any more time.
Helps to Distinguish from Other Product Ranges: The ‘JK’ coding system extends only, and only to the vehicles manufactured by Jeep between 2007 and 2017. The newest Wrangler models, slated to be released sometime in 2018, would be assigned the code ‘JL’. So, this kind of coding system makes it easy to distinguish between the JK product range and previous and later ranges of vehicles.

No Space for Confusion

On first glance, you might not find the code ‘JK’ on the surface of the jeep. In fact, there is no mention of the code on the surface. All you probably might see is ‘Polar Edition’, ‘Rubicon’, and ‘Wrangler’. While this might lead to some confusion, it really is quite simple. No matter what edition of a jeep you own, Rubicon or Wrangler, if it was made in the 2007-2017 period, it is a JK!

Can a Novice Car Owner Remap the ECU of His Car?

Now day’s trend of remapping car’s engine has become a common practice adopted by most of the car owners planning to buy the new car for driving by selling their existing car. It is a universal truth that every machine depreciates due to its regular wear and tear and therefore engine of your car is not an exception to it. The engine of your car is like heart in the human body and as due to regular pumping and hectic working schedule people of today’s generation have to undergo different types of heart surgeries to enjoy healthy life. Similarly as your branded car gets older there is decline in its performance and resulting in low power and torque generation efficiencies followed by decrease in fuel efficiency figures.

The problem becomes complex for the car owner when he has to invest huge portion of his income towards the maintenance of his car. To get rid of this problem the person tries to sale out his beloved car with half heartedly. But, interestingly today going through the vast technical developments the owners can remap the engine control unit (ECU) of their car and enjoy the drive of their dear car as they had been before.

What is ECU Remapping?

In simple words, it can be defined as the process in which the settings or program of engine control unit is re-written by erasing the existing setting. Doing this result in improved power and torque generation efficiency which helps in enhancing the fuel efficiency figures of your car.

Today there are various car modifiers which by making use of necessary remap tools improve the overall performance of your car.

Can I remap my car myself?

It would be interested to know that cars manufactured today are miles ahead from their predecessors and today their performance can be enhanced more easily with help of computers. Interestingly going through this there are lots of car enthusiasts who prefer to remap their car at their end by purchasing the required car ECU remapping software from any of the modifiers online. But, now the question arises that is it possible for a layman or a person with substantial knowledge of computers to remap the engine control unit of his car?

Well an answer to this question in simple words is “NO”. This is mainly because all of us are mostly amateur drivers who consider car cleaning, filling petrol and air pressure and checking engine oil, brake oil, and coolant level sufficiency for car maintenance. Whereas the fact is that car maintenance is beyond all these and also involves towards the maintenance of various other components too including clutch system, braking system, suspension system and many more. Anyhow at present we are discussing about car engine unit remapping so returning back to our topic if you are planning to remap the car yourself then there are certain factors about which you should learn before trying your hands on the new project.

Understanding the working of engine:

The engine of car operates with the mixture of fuel and air. Although there are various parts which help in generating the power inside the engine causing the wheels and different components including clutch, gearbox, pistons, driveshafts, connecting rods making your vehicle run smoothly on the road.

The mixture of fuel and air is critical combination. The excess of fuel will not ignite whereas abundance of air will let the mixture explode like a bomb that could damage the engine and other parts. While determining the settings of these mixtures in an engine different types of parameters are determined by the manufacturers which result in smooth flow of these elements across the engine. When you remap the engine control unit the new settings are determined in accordance to determined parameters.

Risks involved in remapping the ECU yourself:

Due to lack of knowledge you might get the engine of your car damaged;
Although engine remapping is not covered under the warranty, but still trying the same without bringing the same in knowledge of original manufacturer might invalidate the warranty of your car;
The keys of your car might stop functioning;
The overall performance of your car might be affected.

Benefits:

Improved power, torque and fuel consumption efficiencies;
You can enable the not required features like automatic gearbox shift points, DPF, traction control, launch control, EGR etc.
Enjoy the improved functionality of components like brakes, suspension system, exhaust system and other.