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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Sorry for the spammy google SEO title but I couldn't find any great tutorials on installing the Thinkware F750 in an MK7 Golf / GTI and I want to make sure people find this guide. So it took me a while to get this done but I think the results are pretty good.

Cost: (as of September 2015)
  1. THINKWARE F750 Full HD Dash Cam with Sony Exmor Sensor, Built-in WiFi & Traffic Enforcement Warning - $295
  2. THINKWARE TWA-X500F750R Rearview Camera for X500 & F750 Dash Cams - $100
  3. THINKWARE TWA-SH Hardwiring Cable for H50/100, X150/300/500, & F750 Dash Cams - $30

Installation Overview:
  1. Well, if you're just going to buy the F750 and use the Cigarette adapter and dangle it in front of your radio and take up a valuable power plug in the process, the installation takes about 60 seconds. I know most of you here won't be taking that route so....
  2. Start with the hardwiring cable. You're going to need to find Always on current, current only on while ignition is on and a place to ground out the current (a nearby nut or bolt works). The fuse located to the left of the steering wheel behind the storage bin is easy to get to. You'll see in photos below the setup I used but that photo is a little out of date. You can watch the video to see more and how i got it to work because the photo is not the correct way to do it. There's also no MK7 Golf R Fuse-box guide anywhere online or in our owners manual which really pisses me off.
  3. Next, I ran the power cable from the fuse box up the side pillar and basically behind all of the cloth liner until I got to the center reading light dome light setup.I took this apart with a thin flat-head screw driver and unscrewed two torx screws to allow for a bit of a gap where the plastic goes to the rain sensing wiper camera. I also stored some of the excess cable in the reading light area where there was plenty of empty air space.
  4. For the rear camera, I took apart the plastic just like I was going to install LED Taillights in the hatch and ran the cable along the left of the car through the ceiling with a metal snake. This took a while because if you catch on some of the carpet, you could be in for a bad time. The roof carpet where it joins the plastic side pillar moldings is not as flush as it was when I started so this certainly is something that you need to be careful with.
  5. As expected, the Dashcam makes a noise when I start the car and a voice tells me it has GPS lock and is recording. Another voice comes on when I turn off the car notifying me she is now in 'park mode' and will save clips of motion or loud noise or knocks / jars to the car that are detected with the dash cam gyroscope. This is why you have the two hardwire cables. If you use the cigarette lighter setup, you won't have park functions on most cars since this port won't remain charging.

Device Setup:
  1. The device itself starts recording out of the box. Insert the MicroSD card, hit the "format" button and away you go and it'll be recording. If you plug in the rear camera, the device will restart to load the 2nd channel record I assume.
  2. I do recommend downloading the Android / iOS Thinkware application and connecting to the device WiFi. You can set sensitivity for park and motion as well as speeds to enable the lane assist, speed cam and collision warnings.
  3. You can also configure how much the device uses of the SD card like I have mine set to be 60% constant record with the rest saved for manual records and parked motion. It writes over footage as it needs space but will never use more than the percentage you set it up for.
  4. You can't watch the cameras while the device records
  5. The macintosh app is basic but you plug in the SD card to your computer through a built in adapter and open the app. you can see your GPS tracks, front and rear view videos are synchronized and you can export footage.
  6. Videos are stilled as MP4 which is fantastic!!! I was afraid it was AVI / WMV which macintosh / iOS devices hate.

Final thoughts:
  1. I'm going to call my insurance company and request a discount on my premium. I know that's a thing in Europe. Maybe here as well?
  2. Rear camera is nice but not as good of picture quality as the front camera. but if you're ever rear-ended, it's nice to have the entire story!
  3. The device will keep recording and gracefully power down when I unplug the power cord which means should I ever be in a car crash that's catastrophic, the video won't be lost
  4. The device is certainly noticeable but by the time someone sees it and decides in their mind to steal it, I've already caught their face....now doesn't help me once they've stolen it but it might deter people who assume it's a live camera.
  5. There's an LED light on the front that you can disable that's on during park motion detect mode. I don't know if it deters people or brings attention to the thing.
  6. I've yet to use Thinkware support but I bought this because it does have a warranty and the company is based out of Canada. That should account to something.



I'll post a driving sample to this thread once I have a few days of driving under my belt and maybe catch some funny / awful things.

















For the fuse box, don't follow this photo. The yellow one is fine but the red one eventually was moved down to another line as the one I picked when taking a photo wasn't ACC current. Watch the video in the next post to see the final setup if you're curious.

















 

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Why is everyone jumping on the dashcam bandwagon?
Are there cams much less obvious to see installed?

Just honest questions, no clue about this stuff.
 

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Why is everyone jumping on the dashcam bandwagon?
Are there cams much less obvious to see installed?

Just honest questions, no clue about this stuff.
Even with insurance, you can still get screwed over in an accident if there are no other witnesses. Think of it as peace of mind in case something happens where you need the evidence provided by the camera.

Adam, any reason why you mounted the front camera near the middle center of the windscreen and not closer to the base of the rear mirror? Thanks for the write-up regardless! I'm still juggling which camera to get.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I thought about placement for a while.

  1. For Lane Detection and Collision to work accurately, the manual says place it dead center
  2. The NH inspection sticker is in the way. I plan on asking to get a replacement like tell them it fell off or something and make them put it under the cam or to the side

so I should be able to put the cam up higher near the rain sensor but not over.
 

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I have the thinkware

500 series front and rear camera installed in two of my vehicles

for the R already bought a f750 and rear came .. great choice.

installation very quick took me around 40 minutes per vehicle... used a add a fuse (two per vehicle, one for constant and one for accessory) plug n play no splicing :)


great choice .. hows the red light camera warnings?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I have the thinkware

great choice .. hows the red light camera warnings?


I haven't had any alerts go off. I did update the device's software and the most recent Speed Cam file. I sent them an email last night asking where they get their data. My company sells it so I wonder if they're using our speeds data. IDK. Either way, I guess I'm a good signaler and we don't have any cameras. I live in a very rural area.
 

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Why is everyone jumping on the dashcam bandwagon?
Are there cams much less obvious to see installed?

Just honest questions, no clue about this stuff.
last year I got rear ended by a drunk driver(least I suspect). hit and run at a traffic light.

dude was all over the road his car was really messed up after the collision.. he revered and took off bumped dragging on the ground and all.(audi)

I follow him call the police and gave them his license plate #. They made me pull over and stop following him.

They could not find the guy. I went the station\collision center and reported everything.

1 and half weeks later he went to the station and reported he rear ended me... not at a traffic light when I was parked.

His insurance took care of my car... and police said they cannot do anything about it. I had a witness but she was in my car as a passenger so they needed a third party witness. They asked for dash cam footage I had none.

they said if I went to court its going to be a he said she said battle with no proof it will be thrown out.

The dude got no consequences to his actions.. he got no ticket for hit and run, dangerous driving, potential DUI etc.

Since that date within 2 weeks I installed think ware front and rears in all the vehicles in my home.

Also put front and rears on my motorcycle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
What a crappy situation that would have been prevented. I think there are a few people who don't like dash cams because being recorded on public roads is infringing on their privacy. You get photographed and filme dozens of times a day so you're not losing any rights by another motorist having a camera pointed at your car. Besides, I'd rather have all of the cameras in the world owned by private do-good citizens for their own protection than feeding into a database owned by a corporation or government. Started a project a few years ago with a similar concept - http://laughingsquid.com/adams-block-live-video-of-san-francisco-tenderloin-district/ I fully believe in citizens policing themselves and keeping others accountable. and no, I'm not very much fun at parties :)

http://www.forbes.com/sites/kashmir...ad-all-over-new-york-not-just-at-toll-booths/

I drive fast when there's no traffic (fast for me like 10 MPH over) but I'm not a jerk on roads. I signal, don't tailgate etc. I also have a weird fascination with russian dash cam videos. I watch them a LOT online and I've captured a few things that could be a compilation like crossing turkey, deer, moose, people cutting me off, Civics trying to race me and getting pulled over by cops, things like that. It's not a lot but it's enough to have like a once a month funny clips thing on my YT channel.

Most importantly, if I'm ever in a traffic collision or fender-bender, this thing may save me thousands of dollars and grief. that's why I got one. I will eventually get a radar detector but this was a bit cheaper and gave me some experience with wiring and running cables in my car.
 

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I've got car+home insurance.
No dashcam.
No alarm in my house.
Don't carry a gun everywhere I go.
Don't live in a gated community.

Just playing the odds. I might lose, but it's highly unlikely.
The guy who needs the gun or the alarm or the dashcam or the gated community or whatever might well be proven right some day and be glad they were prepared. Or maybe it just makes them more comfortable, and it doesn't matter if they ever "need" it.

Not for me to say. I make my choices and take my chances, and everyone else makes their own choices.
 

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I went with the Blackvue DR650GW-2CH after my CC was rear ended by a young girl texting. While I was on the phone calling 911, she took the opportunity to flee the scene. Even with the her license plate number imprinted into my rear bumper, that was not enough for the police to go arrest her for leaving the scene of an accident (a class 4 felony here in VA). Hopefully I never need it for this same situation again, however it did come in handy for an accident that happened right in front of me on my evening commute home one day. I stopped and informed both drivers I had captured the accident on my camera and gave them my contact information. The insurance company of one of the drivers contacted me and I provided him with the footage.

Just curious why you mounted the rear camera so low. I found the center top of the rear glass to be the best location for my camera. Gives good angle to read the license plate of the car behind you. Here are a few pics of my installation.




 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
RE rear placement, I almost mounted it at the top. Had the USB cord there ready to go then I thought "night time + brake lights = awful red video w/ bad reflection issues" so I changed my mind.

If you say it is fine with the rear top brake light and no issue, I'll move mine in an instant. Pretty easy now that the cable is running back there.
 

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RE rear placement, I almost mounted it at the top. Had the USB cord there ready to go then I thought "night time + brake lights = awful red video w/ bad reflection issues" so I changed my mind.

If you say it is fine with the rear top brake light and no issue, I'll move mine in an instant. Pretty easy now that the cable is running back there.
Here are two night images, one with the brake off and one with it on. Not sure if your rear camera will differ from mine, but I don't think it the brake light poses any issues. Obviously you are going to pick up some of the red light, but it does not hurt the image quality.


 

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I thought about placement for a while.

  1. For Lane Detection and Collision to work accurately, the manual says place it dead center
  2. The NH inspection sticker is in the way. I plan on asking to get a replacement like tell them it fell off or something and make them put it under the cam or to the side

so I should be able to put the cam up higher near the rain sensor but not over.
I didn't realize NH required the stickers to be placed in such a terrible spot.
Wow.

Bureaucratic garbage, that's what that mandate is.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Here are two night images, one with the brake off and one with it on. Not sure if your rear camera will differ from mine, but I don't think it the brake light poses any issues. Obviously you are going to pick up some of the red light, but it does not hurt the image quality.
Thanks for the photos. Looks great. I was thinking a fully huge red bar that took up half of the image and usually if someone is about to rear end me, I'll be hitting brake lights or moving out of the way but I didn't want that to not be captured due to a bright red light on screen.

I'll move it then. the one advantage of current placement is I can't see the camera. In rear-view mirror, it's behind the middle seat head rest so I can't see it's there.
 

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I'll move it then. the one advantage of current placement is I can't see the camera. In rear-view mirror, it's behind the middle seat head rest so I can't see it's there.
My rear camera is small enough that you hardly notice it is there. The thing I like with the placement is that when you are in drive mode and the LED is on (have it turned off in parking mode) you know that the rear camera is operating as it should. Let me know how your camera works once you move it.
 

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NOVA_CC_Exec, how did you remove the plastic lining on the interior of the hatch to access the rubber hose? I was trying to do this in order to mount the rear cam in the exact same fashion as you did, but I couldn't figure it out. Any tips?
 
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