Updated 24 May, 2013, 8:09 am IST
How To: Make a cheap car video recorder
| by Francis D'sa
Vishal, a senior manager at a well-known bank, drives to work every day. He is known as one of the safest drivers in his circle. He never broke traffic rules, and had never got a ticket in all his years of driving. One morning, he was driving at 60Kmph on the highway as usual, when a young man suddenly sprang across the divider to cross the road. The man was hit by Vishal’s vehicle, but survived, with a few scratches. The police was called. Vishal was in deep trouble. Luckily he had installed a digital video recorder (DVR) in his car. From its place on the windscreen, it recorded every part of his journey that day. The recording proved in court that Vishal was driving safely, and following the speed limit, and that the man who was injured was at fault. Vishal was finally set free, all thanks to the DVR in his car.
A car DVR already available in the market
Car recorders are becoming popular all over the world. There are plenty of ways in which DVRs prove useful. Taxi operators monitor if their drivers are following the rules, parents can check that their children are being responsible, and innocent car owners have evidence in case an accident occurs. Those driving a four-wheeler definitely know how bad road conditions are, whether on a highway or in a bylane. Traffic conditions are often bad, especially in India where even simple and safe rules such as lane driving, speed lanes, speed limits, signalling, and parking are not adhered to. You have to be very careful to avoid accidentally bumping your vehicle into another. In case you are involved in an accident where you are not at fault, a photograph or video recording of the incident could prove your innocence. Street cameras are not implemented anywhere and even if they are, they are usually never maintained. Installing a video recorder in your car is recommended to deal with any untoward incidents, but a branded DVR for the car is very expensive. We show you how to make one in less than Rs. 1,000.
Here is a sample video of the Car DVR in action.
Spy cameras are cheap and small
First, find the cheapest spy camera and buy it. There are many variants to choose from, such as pen, keychain, button, cap, tie, book, and toy. We chose the keychain spy camera as it has a small and housing that can be easily hacked.
Laptop cells serve the purpose best
There are two ways to increase the battery life: Either replace the internal battery with a larger-capacity rechargeable one, or simply rig the unit to run off an external power source. Using a larger capacity battery means the battery unit would need to be externally attached as the shell would be too small for it. Using a power source such as a power adapter or a converter from the car’s cigarette lighter point is the best choice. For either method, you have to open the camera and de-solder the existing battery. Then, attach a pair of longer wires, which can conveniently reach the power source. A metre's length of wire should be enough.
• An 18650 battery either purchased from the market or ripped off from an old laptop battery pack.
Rig the spy camera for accommodating the larger battery
An old Android phone can be a great GPS based DVR with speed and time overlays
You can also use of an old Android phone as a car DVR by making use of the apps available. What's more, you can instantly see the video on the display screen too. Using an Android phone is a lot easier too. You do not need to rig the battery as your car charger will work fine here. Apps such as ‘DailyRoads Voyager’ and ‘VideoRoad (Car Video Recorder)’ are available for free on the Play Store. These apps also include GPS geo-tagging, current speed and timestamps as an overlay on the recorded video. The videos can be stored and viewed later.
Tags: How to , How to make , how to make your own , how to build , how to make a recorder , car DVR , car recorder , memory card , large capacity battery , 18650 battery , laptop battery , laptop cell , android phone , gps , geo-tagging
24 May, 2013, 08:13 AM
24 May, 2013, 08:09 AM
24 May, 2013, 08:04 AM
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