Specifications and scope of delivery
Product specifications are as follows. Many parameters and nuances cannot be reflected in the table, we will study them separately.
The prize for laconic packaging goes back to 70mai. On the back of a small ash-black box there is a single sticker with hard-to-read text, which lists the main technical characteristics of the device. 🚗
The recorder comes with a cigarette lighter adapter with a 3.5 m cable, a miniature Velcro fastener and a brief multilingual instruction
The recorder is as thick as a sausage and half a sausage length is made of matte (that’s good) plastic. A stylish, pretty device turned out.
And immediately the question is: why so many holes in the case? Obviously for ventilation. This means that the filling is used here with a fairly high power consumption. We will see.
Two tiny ears protrude from the upper part of the body – the basis of the recorder mounting system. They look frail, but they can only be broken off intentionally: they do not belong to the casting of the case, but come out of it and are made of extra strong plastic. The attached bracket with a sticky pad is attached to the ears, the whole structure is fixed with a bolt. By the way, the small size of the lugs will not allow you to fix the recorder on another bracket, taken, for example, from the set of some action camera.
On the left side of the barrel-body there is a button, the only one on the device. It is surrounded by a light guide ring that glows in different colors, signaling the current mode of the device.
Next to the button is a microphone hole, which, it turns out, “looks” towards the driver. On the opposite side from the driver, on the right, there is a Micro-USB connector for powering the device, as well as a slot for a microSD / SDHC / SDXC memory card. A recessed button for reset / restart of the device was hidden right next to it, but there was no need for it.
Frankly, such an arrangement of the memory card slot (to the right of the driver) is not a very good idea. However, due to the ultra-compactness of the device, there was no other way out, so be it.
The quality of the plastic and the assembly as a whole does not give rise to the slightest criticism, the macro photographs of the device look no worse than a 3D render. This is not really a render, this is a photograph.
The included cigarette lighter adapter can be powered by on-board systems in cars and trucks, delivering 5V at 2.4A. I wonder why a humble miniature recorder needs 12W?
Mount and connect
As already mentioned, the recorder mount contains a single hinge. This is great, because thereby the possibility of shaking or microvibration in the frame is reduced to almost zero. It is recommended to mount the recorder on the windshield in the area of the rear-view mirror. But so that the button, surrounded by a luminous ring diode, is visible to the driver. In our case, the best place for installation was the upper edge of the windshield slightly to the left of the central support of the rear-view mirror, since the place on the glass directly behind the mirror has already been taken, there is a stationary two-chamber recorder installed still in a car service.
In order not to spoil the “native” adhesive pad, we used two pieces of adhesive tape, sticking it directly to the protective cover of the complete pad.
The recorder is controlled by one button. How is this possible? It’s as easy as shelling pears: multiple presses activate a function.
In addition to a single button, the recorder can also be controlled over the air, via Wi-Fi. For this, a smartphone is used with the 70mai mobile application installed (version for Android, version for iOS). The connection of the registrar with a mobile device (smartphone or tablet) is made using the simplest of all possible methods:
- Activating Wi-Fi adapter in the dashcam (short press of the button)
- Connecting a smartphone to the point 70mai_d06_XXXX (password, as always, 12345678)
- Launching an application on a smartphone
By the way, about the voice. Another thanks to the developer: the woman sitting inside the recorder obediently informs about the current operating mode of the device.
The video broadcast comes from the recorder to the smartphone with a slight delay, no more than a second – a standard lag for most devices using a Wi-Fi channel to transmit a digital video stream. The maximum distance from the recorder to the smartphone, at which stable broadcasting is possible without breakdowns and friezes, is 20 meters.
During video recording, the recorder compresses in the recorder, compressed by the H.264 codec and saved to the * .MP4 container. The audio in the files is encoded in the ancient ADPCM codec with two channels and a bitrate of 136 Kbps. Developed in the early 70s of the last century, this audio format was originally intended for encoding and transmitting speech. Accordingly, it was used mainly in IP telephony. Today this format is, to put it mildly, an anachronism. Hence, the train of thought of the developer who chose a 50-year standard for use in a modern device is incomprehensible.
The bitrate of the video stream depends on the selected frame size and video quality level, the maximum level reaches 16 Mbps in the maximum quality mode. There is no need to use the second mode with a lower bit rate (12 Mbit / s), unless, of course, you want to fill your memory card with a video archive in a few days. Moreover, with a low quality level, there is a potential risk of losing important data.
Now for a surprise! The optoelectronic unit, which plays the main role in the recorder, is most likely pulled out of a smartphone. Why? Belonging to mobile devices gives a variable frame rate in the video, with which all smartphones without exception record.
During recording, the recorder divides the material into segments of the duration specified in the settings. The material is saved in different folders depending on its type: Picture – photographs (what other pictures? There is no photo mode in our recorder!), Normal – regular recording, Event – erasure-protected clips placed in this folder when the shock sensor is triggered.
An important point: there are no gaps or pauses at the junction of two video files that are generated by our recorder. Thus, there is no risk of missing a fleeting but important event.
The resolution of video captured by the DVR in good light reaches 900 TV lines on the horizontal side of the frame (Full HD 1920 × 1080 📽). A more accurate determination of the resolution is hindered by noticeable aliasing (gradation of contrast boundaries) and pronounced contrast. The developers clearly went overboard with the picture settings, and the ability to change the picture settings is missing.
The device in question has a built-in G-sensor with three-stage settings: off, low and high sensitivity. When there is strong vibration on the road and high sensitivity is turned on, the recorder writes videos to the protected Event folder, as all recorders with a shock sensor do.
Another mode related to safety is parking mode. This function turned out to be extremely poorly documented, there is no information on it from the manufacturer, except for a vaguely incomprehensible line in the settings: Auto. off after parking with a choice of intervals (20, 30, 40, 50 minutes and Do not turn off automatically). What all this means and how to work with it is decidedly unclear. Logically, this function makes it possible to continue recording in cases where the car is not moving (that is, the G-sensor does not sense movement), but the power to the recorder continues to flow. Need to check.
And so it turned out. Having powered the recorder from a USB adapter, we left it alone. After about 20 minutes, the device quietly turned off, and his hidden announcer did not inform about it in any way. But as soon as the recorder was touched, it immediately turned on and the green LED made it clear that the recording had started again.
There are questions to the considered dashcam. First, why does he encode the video so sloppy? Such artifacts in the video are quite rare; very old amateur cameras, as well as cheap smartphones of early models, gave a similar quality of compression. And the second question: is the broken WDR a bug or a feature?
Other characteristics of the device, which became known during testing, make the recorder well:
- diminutiveness, invisibility
- battery availability
- possibility of stable connection with the recorder via Wi-Fi at a distance of up to 20 meters
70mai Dash Cam 1S Midrive D06 is one of the smallest car DVRs available. The built-in Wi-Fi adapter allows you to view and copy material “over the air”, and the actual absence of image settings such as white balance, exposure compensation, etc., eliminates the headache of an ignorant user who does not want to understand all these video nuances. The impression is slightly blurred by sloppy codec, sloppy localization and other imperfections, but now it seems that the presence of raw products on the market is becoming the norm.