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Action camera as a dash cam

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Action camera as a dash cam

Old 11-22-22, 02:11 PM
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Daniel4
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Action camera as a dash cam

I'm using an old wornout action camera as a dash cam. It's a Kaiser Baas X300.

I put it into car mode and turn on the 5 min loop.

After several weeks, I take the camera out of the car and look at the videos on my laptop. I discover that the last trips I had taken were not recorded when the sd card was full.

I thought that putting it into loop would overwrite the earliest video when the memory becomes full. Am I wrong? Maybe the camera is messed up and this feature doesn't work.

Any other ideas?

New dashcams cost about $300. This action camera cost me $75. It's still useful as long as there still is memory to record my trips.

Last edited by Daniel4; 11-22-22 at 03:28 PM.
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Old 11-22-22, 04:17 PM
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Don't know the answer for you, but I've been looking for a cheapo camera. And that certainly qualifies as cheapo. But how long does the battery typically last? Their website and specs in the manual tell how long it takes to charge...too long 2.5 hours, but not how long it will last for continuous recording.

I did notice this statement in the manual about car mode.....

Car Mode Car Mode lets you use the X300 camera like a Dash Camera and record in Loop Mode. When enabled the X300 will begin recording the moment a power input/source has been detected. When the power source has been shut off/ disconnected the camera will record for an interval (see delay section) and then power off.
https://downloads.kaiserbaas.com/dow...Guide-X300.pdf

So if you met all those requirements and it's not working then maybe it's the cheapo part of the equation. Or possibly a firmware update is needed. But I'd contact their support and see what they say.
https://support.kaiserbaas.com/hc/en-us
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Old 11-23-22, 01:11 PM
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Update: Yesterday I took note of the earliest video.

Today, I compared the earliest video and 11 of the yesterday's videos did get overwritten. So it's all good.

As for the KB X300 being a cheapo, yes it is. But it did teach me what to look for in better cameras. This camera came with one battery. I asked Kaiser Baas if there were spares and a charger. Yes to the spare batteries. No to the charger. That means after long rides, I have to recharge the batteries in the camera one at a time. Not only that, the camera does not have residual memory. Every battery change requires a reset if the date and time.

And then after a year of use, the casing started cracking and falling apart.

So in car-mode, it's using the power from the car accessory plug. That means I never have to reset the date and time.
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Old 11-23-22, 02:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Daniel4 View Post
As for the KB X300 being a cheapo, yes it is. But it did teach me what to look for in better cameras.
Exactly the reason I've been looking for a cheapo camera.

That way I can better figure out how I'm actually going to use it instead of just imagining all the wonderful things I can do with it. And then I can get a better camera after I figure out what the cheaper one doesn't do well for me.

Appreciate the update about the other stuff, but still, does anyone know how long the battery will last for continuous recording?
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Old 11-23-22, 09:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
Exactly the reason I've been looking for a cheapo camera.

That way I can better figure out how I'm actually going to use it instead of just imagining all the wonderful things I can do with it. And then I can get a better camera after I figure out what the cheaper one doesn't do well for me.

Appreciate the update about the other stuff, but still, does anyone know how long the battery will last for continuous recording?
The KB X300 battery lasts 45 to 50 minutes in warm spring/ summer weather and 30 minutes in cold, fall and winter weather.

The batteries on my later cameras, Campark and Akaso (they use the same battery) last 1hr 45min. I have enough spare batteries for a six hour bike ride.

Last edited by Daniel4; 11-28-22 at 10:28 AM.
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Old 11-23-22, 11:43 PM
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Sounds like you sorted out the issue. I've used several cameras for cycling videos, some of which were specifically designed as action/traffic documentary cameras.

Some action/documentary video cameras (other than GoPro) have quirks, such as being sensitive to types of media cards, card capacity, etc. My now-retired Ion Speed Pro could be picky about media cards. I retired it after the runtime per charge dropped from 90 minutes to less than 30. But it could still be used when connected to an external power supply -- USB battery, car power, etc.

The VanTop Moments 4 is a GoPro style knockoff, not bad as a bargain action cam for short duration use, but turned out to be unsatisfactory as a mundane traffic documentary camera. Decent features including image stabilization, various modes including motion sensor. But runtime per charge is 60 minutes or less, and the two included batteries can be charged only while inside the camera. It can't be charged while also running the camera. The battery compartment and inputs for USB, HDMI, etc., are located where they can't be accessed while the camera is mounted on a tripod or other support. The weather-resistant housing covers the microphone so audio is muted. It's almost impossible to know whether it's on or off without detaching the camera from the helmet or bike to check. The built-in LED screen for preview/review and control options drains a lot of power, although the screen auto shuts off while recording. No internal battery/capacitor, so the date/time all needs to be reset with every battery swap. Huge PITA. Again, not a bad knockoff of an early GoPro type, but not optimal for mundane commuter recording for cyclists or motorists.

The best I've found -- and used for two or three years now -- are Drift Ghost X. These are no-frills traffic documentary cameras (no image stabilization, no preview/review screen, controlled primary via phone app), marketed in England primarily to motorcycle/scooter commuters, but also suitable for bicyclists. Runtime per charge was 5 hours for the models I bought, and they're now offered with 8-hour battery modules. My first Ghost X battery lasted an honest 5 hours per charge for the first year (at least 200 rides per year), dropped to about 4 hours the next year, then suddenly dropped to one hour, then 30 minutes, then died the final month. Not bad service for a camera used on every ride, about 200 per year, usually 2-8 hours per ride, for two years in all weather. I replaced the battery with the new 8-hour module.

These are weather-resistant as-is, no need for a separate weather housing. I've ridden in rain several times, no problem. I've dropped one Ghost X a few times on the floor or pavement, and once the camera popped out of the front mount and tumbled along the street at about 15 mph -- no damage. That was my error, not the mount -- I neglected to check the shifter/brake cables crossing my road bike brifters, and during a sharp slow speed turn one cable pressed against the spring-loaded release latch. Moving the cable slightly and securing it with a zip tie fixed that problem.

If I wanted to recycle one of my older video cameras for car or motorcycle use, I'd choose my Ion Speed Pro since it ran reliably off external power supplies. These weatherproof tubular/cylindrical shaped cameras were also marketed under the Polaroid brand a few years ago and are still available via Amazon. These have two very simple controls: a slider with positive no-look feedback that only controls on/off; a multi-function press button for the few other options. Very simple for no-look operation. Great design but Ion (another UK based company) never updated or followed through after the first two or three models. All they really needed was an upgraded sensor with better dynamic range and nighttime performance, and longer battery runtime per charge.
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Old 11-27-22, 05:34 PM
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Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
All they really needed was an upgraded sensor with better dynamic range and nighttime performance, and longer battery runtime per charge.
I would hav settled for just them adding image stabilization
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