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Anyone tried a Sima SL-100IR light for their dashcam?

Discussion in 'Technology' started by Undermensch, Apr 5, 2016.

?
  1. Yes - Polaroid

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. Yes - Sima

    4.3%
  3. Yes - Other

    13.0%
  4. No - Considering it

    52.2%
  5. No - I don't even have a dashcam

    26.1%
  6. No - I have a dashcam but you are a nerd

    4.3%
  1. Undermensch

    Undermensch Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Down the Shore, NJ
    Driving:
    UberX
    I've checked for threads on infrared lights for dashcams but the only threads I've found talk about the concept in general but don't list specific devices and results.

    Here is my current setup and results:
    • Car is a 2008 Prius
    • Front windows untinted
    • Rear windows tinted
    • Transcend DrivePro 520 dual lens dash cam
      • Has interior facing infrared lights that light up the front row
      • Rear seats are just about entirely invisible unless there is ample street light or when the car interior lights come on
    I've ordered a Sima SL-100IR for pickup at B&H today. I want to see if the light emits red visible light (it shouldn't but many seem to do so) and I want to see if I can place it somewhere where I can wire it into a 12v line while still getting enough light to the back row.

    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/762228-REG/Sima_SL_100IR_SL_100IR_Infrared_LED_Light.html

    In the Prius there is a little junk holder pocket under the radio that has a translucent plastic cover. I want to see if the light will fit in there. The lights will be facing up but it might emit enough to still illuminate the back seats. If not I might remove the junk tray and put the light behind the cover. Either way I would be able to wire it into 12v easily at that location.

    Has anyone else tried this?

    Which light did you get?

    Where did you locate it?
     
    Lepke, Fireguy50 and RightTurnClyde like this.
  2. Undermensch

    Undermensch Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Down the Shore, NJ
    Driving:
    UberX
    Ok, here is the setup I ended up with. It works great!

    Items

    Installation Photos

    Camera
    - Located to the right of the rear view mirror
    5f424c6a-f275-4719-9a26-d52dfa448953.jpg
    LED Infrared Light - Located near the floor on the center console, bounces light off the ceiling to diffuse it (it projected too narrow of a cone of light otherwise)

    2ce061d3-c6f0-4994-9cd0-726a39e2fdc3.jpg
    Comparison Photos of Infrared Light

    Dark - Light off

    This is using only the on-camera lights. As you can see, it's pretty much worthless.

    Dark.png

    Light - Light on

    Note: I cropped out the driver's side rear seat so you don't have to look at my ugly mug. The camera does capture that seat at the same light level as the pax side seat.

    I didn't include a picture of the infrared light itself because the iPhone has an infrared filter that causes it to look completely off. When the light is on the LEDs have a faint red glow. It doesn't light anything up with visible light, but you do notice it if you look at it.

    Light.png
     

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    Last edited: May 21, 2016
  3. Wyreless

    Wyreless Active Member

    Location:
    Germantown, MD
    Driving:
    UberXL
    Great effort getting this posted. Thanks allot. Now to clarify, your camera is not designed to recognize IrDA lighting correct? It doesnt have it's own IrDA lighting? Id love to put this on my Thinkwave X500 if it will improve the night image processing.
     
    Lepke likes this.
  4. Undermensch

    Undermensch Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Down the Shore, NJ
    Driving:
    UberX
    Hi - My camera is designed for using IR light in night mode for the interior camera only (the only facing the passenger compartment). It does have IR lights on the camera but they don't light up more than about 2-3 feet in front of the camera, and they do even that poorly. The Sima light makes both rows of seats easier to see. Hope that helps.
     
    Lepke likes this.
  5. lyft_audi

    lyft_audi Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Driving:
    Lyft
    I need to get one of those lights
     
    Lepke and Undermensch like this.

  6. Wyreless

    Wyreless Active Member

    Location:
    Germantown, MD
    Driving:
    UberXL
    Yep thats what I needed to know. I think my inexpensive fix is a cam with IrDA capability and then the SIMA. Use that as my 3rd cam solely for good nitevision
     
    Lepke likes this.
  7. Fireguy50

    Fireguy50 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Usolye-Sibirskoye
    Driving:
    UberBLACK
    Interesting

    Might be able to hide that in the rear dome light?
     
  8. Undermensch

    Undermensch Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Down the Shore, NJ
    Driving:
    UberX
    I had seen anther post where someone did just that (different light though).

    Turns out it's not really necessary (at least for my car). I've been driving with it for nearly a month and not one person has noticed it and asked what it was.

    I'm not sure how you could put it in the dome light without losing the functionality of the dome light. You'd have to be lucky in having an "ignition on" wire in the dome light and I can't see how you would since it's not necessary. You wouldn't want it to be always on and you wouldn't want it to be on only when the doors are open, so you'd have to use the switch to turn it on and off every time you started or stopped driving at night. Seems like it'd be a real pain.

    If I'm missing some better way to do it, please clue me in!
     
    Lepke likes this.
  9. Fireguy50

    Fireguy50 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Usolye-Sibirskoye
    Driving:
    UberBLACK
    I'm extremely good at electrical engineering. Installed my own backup camera, footwell lighting, and unhooked the front passenger window from the child lock button (only the rears deactivate now). Many other things I'm capable of if I have the time and resources.

    When I was an automotive electrical engineer (old job), I did every inch of wiring in this race car

    Andy_McDermid_American_Sedan_winner_2011_SCCA_National_Runoffs.jpg
     
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2016
  10. Undermensch

    Undermensch Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Down the Shore, NJ
    Driving:
    UberX
    Heh. Me too... but if the wire isn't there I'm not too interested in pulling one to it...
     
  11. HotRodriguez75

    HotRodriguez75 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Dallas - Fort Worth
    Driving:
    UberX
    Thanks for referencing this thread in another post. I have the blacksys CF-100, which I am considering installing LED's in the rear dome light and having them running when dark. Any thoughts on regular LED's providing sufficient light to record in the rear?
     
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  12. mandreyka

    mandreyka Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the write up and info, I just got a falcon 360 and need a separate light. I was looking at that light and thought it was AC only buy it looks like that cord works fine? Thanks
     
    Undermensch likes this.
  13. Fireguy50

    Fireguy50 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Usolye-Sibirskoye
    Driving:
    UberBLACK
    Okay after 2 days, I'm not happy with the quality of the HDR (High-Dynamic-Range) "night vision" on my dash cam. I'll be testing IR LED's
     
  14. RightTurnClyde

    RightTurnClyde Well-Known Member

    Location:
    ATL
    Love this thread! Great write up good know they're are some tinkerers on this site such as myself. I don't have an interior cam (only exterior). I've often thought of doing something like this once I upgrade to a system that does both interior and exterior. When I get one I have always planned on using a flexible IR led strip light (eBay) on the floorboards in the rear. For those of you interested in total stealth mode, using "940nm" IR LEDs instead of "850nm" LEDs will make it invisible to the naked eye with no red light. This thread also got me wondering about simply taking my old iPhone and seeing if I could remove the IR filter in it (coupled with some IR LED's) as a fun DIY project.
     
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  15. Fireguy50

    Fireguy50 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Usolye-Sibirskoye
    Driving:
    UberBLACK
    I think I'll stick with 850nm IR LEDs with the slight Red glow. Just have to find a rope light in my price range that I like.

    940nm IR LED's will be invisible to the naked eye with no red light, but produce 40% less light.

     
  16. RightTurnClyde

    RightTurnClyde Well-Known Member

    Location:
    ATL
    Yes that's an issue for sure. Although they might put out enough light to work for our purposes (I don't know though).

    Another issue I would question is if your specific dashcam has a cutoff for IR light above a certain nm value; say anything above 900 (again I have no idea just thinking of ways it might not work). Then again, that's why I love to tinker and try things out.

    I've also thought about custom build (cheap) that would fit in the dome light and allow you to use both the regular and IR light (since a power source is already right there). I looked on the DashCamTalk forum thinking someone has already done some cool stuff like this, but alas I couldn't find a good thread about it as most of them aren't concerned with the interior.
     
    Fireguy50 likes this.
  17. Fireguy50

    Fireguy50 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Usolye-Sibirskoye
    Driving:
    UberBLACK
    Doesn't matter for me :(
    After testing, the AUSDOM model AD282 camera doesn't respond to 850nm IR LED lighting :(
     
  18. Fireguy50

    Fireguy50 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Usolye-Sibirskoye
    Driving:
    UberBLACK
    Okay new plan!
    Visible Red LED strip light in the headliner behind the sunroof. I can pretend it's mood lighting or gives the PAX the ability to see what they're doing, prevent lost keys & phones, etc. I can sell truthful story to cover up the primary intention is better security dash camera footage.


    Red 640nm wavelength is best for tactical reasons, it protects the night vision abilities Rods in your eyes.
    Blue 420nm wavelength is terrible for tactical night vision (why people complain about blue headlights)
    visible_light_wavelength.png

    I already have these LED's (warning it took 4 weeks to be delivered from China)
    I'm going to purchase the U05 LED tape strip mounting bracket
     
  19. os2wiz

    os2wiz Active Member

    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    Driving:
    UberX
    View attachment 35555 [/QUOTE]
    I also have a DrivePro520, which I love, but have noticed the same problem. I have been searching for an IR lamp to brighten things up, and you have just saved me a lot of work, my friend. Thanks for your detailed postings!
     
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  20. os2wiz

    os2wiz Active Member

    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    Driving:
    UberX
    I am curious as to how you attached the light to your console. Did you use the suction mount to which you referred? Also, is the blue cord visible in the photo the USB cord to power the light? Thanks.
     
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