Text: Martin Aguilar / Photos: Kelvin Christian Go, Martin Aguilar | posted December 23, 2015 12:01
A compact dashcam at a sensible price
Dashboard cameras are becoming an essential gadget for most of us these days because they can record videos that can be used as proof should you be involved in an accident. It can also document your daily commute to work as well as your epic road trips. With the emergence of this gadget, Autoindustriya.com has been doing a number of dashcam product reviews. Recently, we tested the Transcend DrivePro 200. Now, we look at the new Fujitsu FD7 Car Dashcam from Blackbox Philippines and see if it can deliver crisp video footage.
The Fujitsu FD7 is one of the newest dash cams offered in the local market. In a nutshell, the FD7 is a multi-function, high image quality, video recording, and photo capturing device. It can be easily mounted via a suction cup, records video on a microSD card, and has a number of recording functions.
Each package contains an FD7 unit, a suction mount, USB cables, AV cables and a 12V power outlet jack.
Installing the FD7 in your vehicle is simple and easy. First, wipe the surface (windshield) before installing the dash cam. Then, stick the suction cup and mounting bracket onto the windshield and align the camera.
The FD7 already comes with a 2.4-inch TFT LCD display, making it easy to view the videos if the camera is positioned properly. You can easily adjust the camera angle with the help of the FD7’s LCD display.
The Fujitsu FD7 dashcam features as high as 1080p HD continuous recording, full audio recording, 180-degree wide angle view, wide dynamic range and a 4x digital zoom. It also comes with HD/AV and a USB 2.0 output port.
Video frame rates are the following: 1080p Full HD quality at 30 frames per second (fps); 720p at 60 fps or 30 fps; WVGA format at 30 fps and VGA format at 30 fps. Storage is via a microSD card, up to 32GB in capacity. However, a Class-10 or above memory card is recommended to ensure efficient recording.
As mentioned earlier, the FD7 has a 2.4-inch TFT LCD display which allows you to playback videos and review photos on the unit itself.
Similar to other dashcams, the FD7 uses loop recording wherein users can choose the following recording intervals: 1 minute, 3 minutes, 5 minutes and 10 minutes. The loop recording function overwrites the videos stored in your memory card when it reaches its maximum capacity. No need to manually delete old video files. Be sure to move the videos from your memory card if you want to save it for future use.
The Fujitsu FD7 also has G-sensor feature, which is an emergency record function. The G-sensor is activated if the unit detects a hard bump. Upon detection, the FD7’s G-sensor immediately records and saves video automatically so that it won’t be overwritten, and for documentation purposes. FD7’s G-sensor can be configured to High-Medium-Low sensitivity.
In addition, the FD7 dashcam also has a parking surveillance feature. Though I wasn't able to test this feature, Fujitsu says the FD7's parking surveillance feature will automatically start to record if your parked car is subjected to impact or shake. Fujitsu goes on to say that each recording lasts 30 seconds.
In terms of size, the Fujitsu FD7 is quite compact and won’t distract the driver’s view. I decided to place it in the middle of the windshield and slightly below the rear view mirror.
The FD7 comes with a 180-degree Full HD ultra wide lens, which is probably wider than most dash cams, allowing the unit to capture more of the road. Its daytime video quality is good, producing crisp and clear images, allowing you to clearly read the license plate number of cars. The camera focuses decently enough and doesn’t shake despite the dilapidated roads of the metro.
However, the FD7 had a slight difficulty in producing crisp images at night. In nighttime conditions, the camera wasn’t able to consistently capture crucial images such as the plate number of cars.
Overall, the Fujitsu FD7 car dashcam did manage to deliver decent video footage, suitable for documentation. Our test was too brief to evaluate the unit’s durability. Price-wise, the Fujitsu FD7 is probably one of the cheapest dashcams available in the Philippine market. For the price of PhP5,500, I can say that the Fujitsu FD7 is a really good buy because of the variety of recording options, G-sensor and parking features, and compact size, with a budget-friendly price tag. Blackbox PH offers their new product at several retailers.