Roav Dashcam C2 REVIEW Capture the Unexpected in HD
Perhaps one of the most dangerous activities that we may endure is our daily commute. If you have ever navigated to YouTube or simply watched the evening news, I often wonder why we choose to drive at all. According to seriousaccidents.com, “The NHTSA reports that approximately 52 percent of all accidents occur within a five-mile radius of home and 69 percent of all car accidents occur within a ten-mile radius from home.” Why then do so many of us buy GoPro Cameras, body cams, expensive cell phones to leave our car camera free? Perhaps it is the cost; perhaps it is the idea that we do not need a camera in our vehicle. Camerasreviewed.com provided at least six reasons why you need a camera in your car: driving accidents, parking accidents, insurance fraud, showing off driving skills, documenting your road trip, capturing the unexpected. The Roav Dashcam C2
The Roav Dashcam C2 arrived in a 6 3/16 inches wide by 5 15/16 inches tall by 3 5/16 inches wide retail package. Along the front of the box, Anker masterfully displayed the High-Definition 1080P Video, Extreme Temperature, Superior Nighttime Clarity, Shock-Activated Recording dashcam. The lifelike image showed both the front and back of camera upon a white background. The orange striped accents along your right added some much-needed color to the cover. Rotating the package 90 degrees clockwise, Anker conveniently added their contact email and phone number for customer support. The opposing face recommended that you downloaded the Roav Dashcam app from the App store or Google Play store. The visually appealing orange colored reverse face provided a detailed specification list for the camera: Ambarella A12A25 chipset, Sony IMX Nighttime 323 Sensor, temperature operation 14–158F, F2.0 Lens, 470 mAh LiPo battery, 1080P 30 FPS video, G sensor, 3″ screen. Additionally, the back provided a “whats in the box” for the consumer. You can expect to find the Dashcam C2, Anker 2-port car charger, micro-USB charging cable, owner manual, trim removal tool and happy card. The bottom of the box provided additional information about the wide angle HD lens, nighttime sensor, wide operating temperature and advanced gravity sensor to detect collisions. I was pleased with the overall appearance of the product and was excited to unbox and test the camera.
Once I lifted the lid off the box, I was presented with the rear view of the dashcam and an attractive dual port USB 12V car adaptor. The two items were well packaged within a form-fitting black removable plastic tray. Looking at the inside of the lid, you will find a glued-in, thin black piece of protective foam. The 2 9/16 inches wide by 1 7/16 inches tall non-touch screen was further protected by a thin clear plastic film. Lifting the tray out of the box, you will find a well-written orange instruction manual and satisfaction card. Beneath the literature, you will find a 4 inches wide by 4 1/2 inches tall by 1 1/4 inches thick black cardboard box containing individually wrapped suction cup mount and 3M VHB adhesive mount. Located to the right of the removable cardboard box with the mounting hardware, you will find another boxed compartment. Hidden within the flap, you will find a very generous, individually wrapped, 137 1/2 inches long USB-A to USB-micro cable.
I was very pleased that Anker chose to include a universal dual port 12V charger, instead of a hardwired adaptor plug. I have tested many automotive products that provided their adaptor/cable and this severely limited my ability to charge and use additional tech devices within my truck. The 0.9 ounce USB adaptor measured 2 1/2 inches long and 1 1/16 inches diameter. The positive tip and negative side wings allowed the Anker 12V adaptor to fit snuggly into the 12V car adaptor port on my Chevy Silverado. There was no wiggle within the adaptor/port, and the device only stuck out about 1 1/4 inches from my dash. Each port is capable of 2.4A output with a total of 14A, which should not overpower the 15A fuse/circuit. With the 137 1/2 inches long cable and the trim removal tool, Anker wants their Roav Dashcam product to be a permanent fixture within your vehicle.
To test the charger capabilities, I utilized a DROK USB Multimeter (Chevy Silverado idling) in between the charger and the device. I was able to charge my iPad Pro 10.5″ while the camera was plugged into the upper port of the charger and was pleased to find that both worked flawlessly. The DROK Multimeter showed a range of 1.8–2.1A of charging while the camera was installed. Next, I plugged in my Ventev Wireless charger and found that my iPhone X pulled roughly 1.4–1.8A while the camera was charging. The camera only pulled 1A while my iPhone X was charging and this was also true while my iPad Pro 10.5″ was charging. The inclusion of dual USB ports likely did not add much to the overall cost of the device. Being a detail-oriented person, this inclusion was one of the greatest perks of the kit. You essentially get two items for the price of one.
The kit included dual mounting options and instructions to mount just to the bottom right of the rear-view mirror. A few other cameras that I have tested also recommended dash mount or just under the visor mounting locations. I agree with the current product that the location just beneath and to the right of the rear-view mirror provided the best open-field view. Additionally, this was mostly hidden by the mirror and thus did not cause another source of distraction. I cleaned the glass with water, allowed it to dry completely (as recommended by the manual) and then installed the 2 1/4 inch diameter suction cup mount. The device was shaped somewhat like a snail without a shell when placed with suction cup down. Along the base, there is a screw-style suction cup activator. As you turn the lock 1/4 turn clockwise, the device will suction to your window. This method of attachment was incredibly secure and has remained attached to my windshield for the past one week. If you desire an even more robust option, remove the red backing from the 3M tape and stick the square piece to your window. You will only have one chance at the installation, as the 3M tape is ruined by removing the adhesive from the glass. Even though I did not use this method of attachment, I appreciated that it was included in the packaging.
At the end of each of the mounting brackets, you will find a slotted rectangle. The rectangle was designed to slide into the top of the camera, along the top and will lock into place. The rectangle will swivel, allowing you to rotate the camera. The mounting bracket also has an up and down swivel arm, with locking screw, to further position the camera for the best open-field view. With either of the mounting brackets, you will have a secure base of attachment. I preferred the suction cup mount for positioning/repositioning and the reasons stated, chose this as my method of testing. With the base firmly affixed, it was easy to rotate the camera to aim at the center of my hood. This provided a very clear view, similar to what I was able to see directly from my windshield. Along the top of the camera, the company kept the device clean and efficient. To the left of the mounting bracket is the small power on/off button and to the right is the USB-micro input port. Installing the base and the camera onto the base was very straightforward.
Plug the 137 1/2 inch power cable into the camera and then into one of the ports on the USB adaptor. Once you have chosen the optimal location for the mounting base, you can then hide the cable. Using the included trim tool, push the cable along the cracks within the dash or within the window/fabric lining. You will need to toy around with the optimal location based on your vehicle. Once powered on, you will hear a cute jingle, and then a female voice from within the camera will start talking to you. She will initially state: “Please use a microSD card with at least 32 “Gees” of memory.” I actually chuckled a little when she stated “Gees” instead of Gigabytes. I thought to myself jeez, I wish a memory card was included in the packaging. Having tested numerous devices, I was prepared to bring my own memory card to the party. Having multiple cards lying around, I installed a Sandisk 16 GB 100mb/s card into the machine. Unfortunately, the instruction manual and the camera felt that this was inadequate. I can attest the camera will work just fine with a smaller card; it will just drastically reduce the amount of recording time available.
With a 32 GB Class 10 microSD card, you can expect 320 min at 1080P, 360 min at 720P 60FPS or 480min with 720P 30FPS. With the 16 GB Class 10 microSD card from SanDisk, I was able to enjoy the 30-minute commute to work and 30-minute commute home from work without any issues. Since this is a loop recorder, older videos were deleted first, and I had the option of removing the card if desired. So, I tested the device with my 16GB microSD card. The back of the camera was efficiently laid out. To the left, the Roav device has an LCD, non-touch capacitive screen and to the right, you will find the four buttons. When you plug in the SD card, you will be asked to format it, and you can use the bottom button to proceed. The bottom button was most often used as the continue button. The middle two buttons were the up/down arrows, and the top button, labeled with a red circle was back/reverse button. Setup took roughly 5 minutes and required updating the date/time.
The camera will continuously record and overwrite older data as space is needed. During installation on the base, I accidentally rattled the camera, and it went into emergency recording mode. If you press the little circle, it will create an emergency recording as well. For the price of this device, you will not find a better dashcam. You can remove the SD card and evaluate the images, zoomed in, to get license plates, see what happened in front of you, etc. Emergency recordings are locked, you can lock other recordings that you desire. I appreciate that this device is not bogged down with accessories and extras. It does not need WiFi capability because it is easier and quicker to download the images from the card anyway. A second problem that I found was that I could not take snapshots or still photos. I figured that this device was simplified for the average user and more features typically mean more techie and more cost. Another possible negative is that the device does not have any included speedometer data, which can sometimes be used to help in accidents/tickets. Excitedly, the pros far outweigh the cons and this device is a must for anyone with a car. Locked files will not be overwritten, ensuring that your needed footage is secure. You can swivel the camera around to look behind you, turn on the audio and capture talking. The lightRoav Dashcam C2 REVIEW did not seem to bother the camera, the night sensor was quite good.
The inclusion of the cigarette 12V adaptor was a much-appreciated surprise. For a device at this price point, I would have expected a reasonable camera, suction cup mount and a USB adaptor cable only. Instead, Roav by Anker cares about you and your overall experience. The installation was easy, the needed power supply was provided to you, in fact, they went above and beyond in the power supply category. The camera resolution was crisp, you get a great viewing angle, and the features are so easy “a caveman could do it.” You will need to buy a micro SD card 32–128 GB. Personally, 32GB will work just fine. I was able to test the device with a 16GB Class 10 card and found it to be adequate, other than the continual warning that I needed a card with more “gees.” I would encourage this device and rate happily rate it at 4.5/5 stars.
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Originally published at macsources.com on March 20, 2018.