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Author Topic: Cheap backup camera  (Read 5421 times)
Lin
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« on: February 10, 2008, 04:28:58 PM »

I just got back from Costco where I purchased their Vehicle Back-up Camera (item# 202791) for 69.99.  Of course, I have not tried it yet, and I know it will not be perfect.  It is 12 volt so I will have to get the camera a power source back there.  I have plenty of 12 volt supply in the front for the monitor  It is wireless, so I am not sure if it will work at almost 35 feet but am hoping that giving it extra height will help.  Maybe there is a way to attach an external antenna.  They suggest taking power off the back-up light circuit so it cuts on whenever you go in reverse.  I would rather be able to turn it on at will.  I'll have to think on this a bit.  Although I do not feel like running a wire just for this, maybe it is time I run a harness of wires for this and other things that will come up.  Anyway, I just wanted to alert any of you that, like me, depend on divine grace when going in reverse.
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Lin
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« Reply #1 on: February 10, 2008, 05:03:20 PM »

By the way, it is a Winplus model #13107a.
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kd5kfl
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« Reply #2 on: February 10, 2008, 05:19:09 PM »

I run 2 hard wired backup cams.

1 in the back window as a rear view mirror.

1 on top, pointed straight down, to see tykes on trikes and pets. Would be very helpful if I had a trailer hitch.

DO NOT waste money on CMOS cameras. They are junk. No night vision. CCD cameras, or better yet, Super HAD CCD.

An expensive but worthwhile candidate:

http://www.supercircuits.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWPROD&ProdID=4222

My monitor:

http://www.supercircuits.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWPROD&ProdID=3984

That camera can be set up as normal or mirror image. Very wide field of view, it could see the ground below the motorhome and the front of a vehicle parked 10 - 15 feet behind it. You have to be creative about mounting it, that ball and socket mount is not suitable for road use.

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Lin
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« Reply #3 on: February 10, 2008, 06:23:35 PM »

Well, I just ran a test.  It was supposed to have about a 30 foot range, but it did not get a stable picture even at 15 feet.  I guess this was not a  day for Santi Claus.  The link that you sent is not all that expensive.  I was hoping that this would be something easy and usable until I got around to something better.  No such luck.
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« Reply #4 on: February 10, 2008, 06:58:04 PM »

Lin,

When I was looking for a system I read somewhere (Woodalls, maybe) that the wireless systems just wouldn't work well in a motorhome application.  I bought a two camera system off Ebay from some ebay store importer.  Color, reversible, hardwired, and works well so far.  I bought it in November, so haven't had it too long, but I'm pleased so far.  Paid $340 for the system

David
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boogiethecat
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« Reply #5 on: February 10, 2008, 07:00:40 PM »

Supercircuits has been my choice for cameras for a looong time.  They have top quality cameras and reasonable prices.  BUT until now, they never had a camera that would reverse.  The one kd5kfl posted is way neat- if you look at the PDF that accompanies it, it actually has a wire that selects normal/mirror.  I may just have to get one... the camera I'm now using is a normal one, and I have a weird box called a "video mirror" that I got on ebay that reverses the image.  But it's clumsy.
Thanks kd5kfl !!!

A cool trick I use for my monitor is a little box I get from ebay called a "VGA box" (example:     Item number: 230219737519 )
This little wonder has 4 analog video inputs, a VGA input, and a VGA output.  Buttons select which input will be active, and whatever comes in gets converted to VGA.  As I remember it runs fine on 12 volts.

SO first off, you can use as large of an LCD monitor as you'd like- you get an LCD VGA computer monitor, and make sure you get one that has a 12-14 volt power adapter so it'll run on your coach's 12 volts, hook it all up and away you go...  the bonus of doing it this way is that you now have a GIANT monitor as compared to the video ones you usually find, and you can select any one of 4 cameras, or your computer.  Mine? I have two cameras, a DVD player, and a PC with GPS.
I got into the VGA box and brought the select button wires out to buttons that I mounted to the side of me as I drive, so I can select at will. 
 So one monitor does it all, it does it BIG and it's really cool.  I use it as a rear view mirror when I drive....
cheers
Boogie
« Last Edit: February 10, 2008, 07:18:22 PM by boogiethecat » Logged

1962 Crown
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« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2008, 07:04:04 PM »

I also bought a Wireless deal, from Crutchfield for almost $300 to put in a Sprinter conversion.

After wiring in the the camera in the rear and testing the rearview mirror/monitor which checked out inside my shop, it all went down the tube on the road.  This is about a 20 foot vehicle with no interior yet and it still failed.

I agree with what was mentioned earlier, although it sounds great, the wireless outfits are not great.  Luckily I was able to return it.

Todd
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DrivingMissLazy
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« Reply #7 on: February 10, 2008, 07:08:37 PM »

I also bought a Wireless deal, from Crutchfield for almost $300 to put in a Sprinter conversion.

After wiring in the the camera in the rear and testing the rearview mirror/monitor which checked out inside my shop, it all went down the tube on the road.  This is about a 20 foot vehicle with no interior yet and it still failed.

I agree with what was mentioned earlier, although it sounds great, the wireless outfits are not great.  Luckily I was able to return it.

Todd

Maybe he should do a quick temporary install test to see how it works while he can still return it.

Richard
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Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body. But rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, a good Reisling in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming:  WOO HOO, what a ride
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« Reply #8 on: February 10, 2008, 07:13:47 PM »

oops, hit the quote button instead of the edit button... Undecided
« Last Edit: February 10, 2008, 07:16:57 PM by boogiethecat » Logged

1962 Crown
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« Reply #9 on: February 10, 2008, 07:19:27 PM »

oops, hit the quote button instead of the edit button... Undecided
I was just getting ready to send a response and find out if you really wanted that as a quote or not. I could have removed the quote for you. But it is all gone now. Hope you did not lose all that typing. LOL

Richard
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Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body. But rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, a good Reisling in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming:  WOO HOO, what a ride
Lin
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« Reply #10 on: February 10, 2008, 07:26:39 PM »

As mentioned, this was from Costco.  That is the only reason I bought it since there is never any problem returning things.   I gave it a fair test, and it's useless, so back it goes. 
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H3Jim
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« Reply #11 on: February 13, 2008, 07:59:28 AM »

I've seen Boogie the Cat's setup and its slick. In fact its so slick I just ordered one of these boxes from ebay. thanks!

I already have a 15" LCD monitor mounted on my dash, so this will work perfectly!
« Last Edit: February 13, 2008, 01:59:23 PM by H3Jim » Logged

Jim Stewart
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« Reply #12 on: February 13, 2008, 10:01:11 AM »

Hi Lin,

I dislike "Cheap"  Cheap always pays Twice.... Grin

"It only costs a little more to go First Class"   "Rodger Penske"

Good Luck
Nick-
« Last Edit: February 13, 2008, 10:03:22 AM by Nick Badame Refrig. Co. » Logged

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Lin
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« Reply #13 on: February 13, 2008, 10:27:43 AM »

Nick,
No doubt, it is better to go first class, but I have found that often people pay first class prices for things that are not substantially better.  I am primarily into function in things like this.  Since my intention was to try it out without installing it, power up the camera and monitor and see if they worked at any distance, I was done with it in 20 minutes.  It's one of those things that I feel drawn to try out of unreasonable optimism.  But I have to say, that when one of those gambits works, I sure feel good.  Right now, there is a 45 foot semi trailer for sale nearby.  It looks like I am going to buy it and have our earthly possessions hauled about 500 miles to move there.  If it all works out, I will have a reasonably priced moved and a great storage shed/shop when I get there.  If not, I will have a new understanding of the glory of professional movers.

I agree with you about disliking "cheap" like Harbor Freight screwdrivers, but "cheap" like just-as-good-for-less is fine with me.
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Dallas
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« Reply #14 on: February 13, 2008, 12:43:42 PM »


"It only costs a little more to go First Class"   "Rodger Penske"

Good Luck
Nick-

Isn't Roger Penske the guy who was too cheap to develop the 2 cycle Detroit into an engine that could and would be viable as mandated by the EPA far into the 21st century? Instead he went with the 60 series 4 stroke that took over 10 years of on road trial and error to become a decent engine.
In the early 80's I operated a test bed vehicle with the "New" 60 series in it, ... ceramic bearings, ECM/solenoid operated valves, variable waste gate Turbo, a truely loverly engine, if you liked stopping for a couple of days every 3000 miles for repairs, adjustments and replacement parts.
I actually gained more respect for the Cummins Triple Nickel and the Cummins 903VT.

Now we have companies like Don Fairchild's that can pull the same power and epa ratings from the 2 strokes.

Just as a point of information, the largest, most efficient engines in oceanic shipping are 2 stroke, based on the original Detroit designs.

Just my pair o' pesos,

Dallas
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H3Jim
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« Reply #15 on: February 24, 2008, 03:01:24 PM »

Boogiethecat aka Gary

Thank you for the tip (again) about the VGA box and the large monitor.  I just bought one from EBay.  $31, plus a rip off $15 shipping (cost him $4.60 to ship).  But the box works great.  I can use the backup camera and put its output to the computer monitor I have on my dash, or I can switch to my laptop with GPS, Engine managment software, or Itunes.  I may have to get more cameras now just to use the extra ports on the box.

Very slick.

I will have to get into the box to make the buttons part of the bus.  The box runs on 5 volt, stepped down from 110 volt via transformer.  Since I normally run my inverter while driving, and the monitor uses 110 volts, no worries.

Thanks again.  I really didn't want to use that puny 5" monitor for the backup camera, but there was no way to hook up an RCA plug to the monitor before this thing.

Now to mount the camera - maybe I never will get my heating system installed Shocked)
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Jim Stewart
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« Reply #16 on: February 24, 2008, 03:40:46 PM »

Does anyone know if this Winplus model #13107a is the same as the VR3 which seems to me be about the same??

Anyone who thinks paying more automatically means getting more is disillusioned in todays world!!
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« Reply #17 on: April 12, 2008, 06:40:19 AM »

I thought I would bring this to the top again and ask a wiring question.

First of all, I have the system that boogiethecat recommends (VGA box and VGA monitor).  Have been using some cheap cameras and decided to upgrade to the camera that kd5kfl recommended.

Last night I tried hooking the camera up to my existing power cord and RCA connector.  Nothing Angry Angry Angry!

The camera has three plugs (power, video and normal/reverse).  I plugged the power cord and RCA into their respective plugs, but did not hook anything into the third plug and I suspect that is my problem.  There is almost no wiring information that comes with the camera (only polarity and generic description of the other two plugs).

I called Gary (boogiethecat) last night and we didn't resolve anything.  I am going to try plugging the RCA output into a TV today, but though maybe one of you have an easy solution to my problem.  I really don't want to have to send the unit back if it is something simple that I am not doing correct.

Jim
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Jim Shepherd
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« Reply #18 on: April 12, 2008, 07:20:34 AM »

I bought one through Northern Tool for $165.00.  It is hard wired, has sound, but the monitor is a green screen-would prefer black and white, or even color-but it works well.  Good Luck, TomC
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« Reply #19 on: April 12, 2008, 07:40:51 AM »

I had another thought last night... perhaps the BNC connector is the video!  It certainly wouldn't hurt anything to try it... maybe they got the paperwork backwards (Chinese doing something like that? C'm on)  Anyway, the RCA jack might be the reversing plug and the BNC the video... after all, BNC is what all high end professional gear uses as the choice for a video connector so maybe....

Boogie
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« Reply #20 on: April 12, 2008, 08:45:42 AM »

Gary (boogie), thanks for the thought.  I would guess you are correct.  The RCA has a plug in it that is probably installed/removed to reverse the picture. 

Now, I will  have to see what I can find in the way of an adapter for that connection (BNC ?) to an RCA. 

Thanks, as always for the help!

I will report back on my progress. 

Jim
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Jim Shepherd
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« Reply #21 on: April 12, 2008, 08:56:28 AM »

Uh...speaking of cheap....I have used an HF B/W Camera now for several years....no problems day or night, sunny or cloudy.  $29.95 as I recall.  Now they have a color version for about 10 bucks more. Cheesy Grin Roll Eyes Grin Grin

FWIW
RCB
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luvrbus
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« Reply #22 on: April 12, 2008, 09:04:38 AM »

I look at the prices you guys are paying for these cameras now unbelievable prices today I won't even tell you what I paid for my Sony with 3 cameras with the distance screen 10 years ago
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« Reply #23 on: April 12, 2008, 11:42:03 AM »

And the winner is:  boogiethecat.  I knew I could count on you.

My reply is related to this camera:  http://www.supercircuits.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWPROD&ProdID=4222

As noted earlier, there are three cables coming from the camea:  power, RCA, BNC.  Since my previous camera connection was RCA, I simply plugged the two RCAs together along with the power cord.  Nothing. 

As Gary surmised, the video was the BNC and the RCA (which came with a "plug") is used to reverse the picture. 

The installation instructions are absolutely no help, indeed they are confusing.

I got a BNC to RCA adapter (Radio Shack 48-173) and now the camera works. 

So far I have only played with it in the bedroom area (get your minds out of the gutter Cool) and had the lighting fairly low.  Seems to work pretty well in the low light.  That was the problem with the previous camera.  The picture still seems a bit grainy, but that is probably because of the low light.

I will now mount it up and see how it works in more natural light.

BTW, this camera does not really fall in the "cheap" category ($109).  My hope is that it will give me good pictures under most lighting conditions.

Jim

« Last Edit: April 12, 2008, 11:47:39 AM by rv_safetyman » Logged

Jim Shepherd
Evergreen, CO
85 Eagle 10/Series 60/Eaton AutoShift 10 speed transmission
Somewhere between a tin tent and a finished product
Bus Project details: http://beltguy.com/Bus_Project/busproject.htm
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« Reply #24 on: April 12, 2008, 01:21:05 PM »

C@@L !!  Glad it worked! Sorry the thought didn't cross my mind earlier...duh...

Now that it's working, try either shorting the RCA jack or giving it 12 volts (in that order) one of the two oughta reverse the image.

And the RCA-> BNC jack is a radio shack part (ulp did I say that? Smiley ) Oh...yeah you already figured that out...
« Last Edit: April 12, 2008, 01:23:34 PM by boogiethecat » Logged

1962 Crown
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« Reply #25 on: April 12, 2008, 06:59:36 PM »

Gary, shame on you for being so hard on RS Cheesy.  We kind of live in the tulies, and to have one within a few miles with the part I need, I can't put them down.

The RCA came with a plug (should have been a clue).  If you leave the plug in, the picture is normal.  Pull the plug and it is reversed.  My guess is that it shorts the RCA cable to present a normal picture.

I got the unit installed.  As someone observed, the base looks pretty puny and I did not use it.  I had made a housing out of PVC tubing for the previous camera.  The new camera has a 1/4 20 threaded hole (could not believe it was not metric Huh).  I put a stud in and drilled a hole in the PVC cap, shimmed it out a bit with some extra nuts. 

The picture looks pretty good.  The bus is in the shop and the camera seemed to handle the lower shop light mixed with the fairly bright outside light pretty well.  The picture is a bit grainy, but that is on a 15 inch monitor.  Still much better than the old camera.

The 170 degree picture sure covers a large area.  I can't wait to try it out this next week when I take the bus for a spin to check out muffler back pressure.    I will not be on the highway, but I think I will get a pretty good feeling.  We leave on a real trip in a couple of weeks and I will try to remember to give a more detailed report.

Jim

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Jim Shepherd
Evergreen, CO
85 Eagle 10/Series 60/Eaton AutoShift 10 speed transmission
Somewhere between a tin tent and a finished product
Bus Project details: http://beltguy.com/Bus_Project/busproject.htm
Blog:  http://rvsafetyman.blogspot.com/
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« Reply #26 on: April 12, 2008, 07:39:35 PM »

In truth that warn't me being hard on RS... that's actually a cartoon a friend of mine drew of a real scene!!  The gal in the cartoon is a rocket scientist, literally, (used to work for JPL doing structural analysis) and she got kinda pi$$d when a radio shack guy challenged her on a not-so-common battery that she was buying- so much that she *actually* said that to the guy!!  It was so cool that someone in the gang made T-shirts~~~
hee hee

Cheers
G
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1962 Crown
San Diego, Ca
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