Originally Posted by Boborc
I was starting to look at something like this. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01IOL27TI?psc=1
The only thing is I would be adding another screen to the truck. Wondering if there is a wifi camera that will run off 12v and work with android so I can use my phones screen. Thats kinda why I was looking at the Garmin since I use a compatible Garmin GPS and could use same screen. The only thing is they say the transmitter must be in line of sight to receiver, was wondering if anyone has used the Garmin Bkup camera.
Since there are several million iPhone and Android smartphones in use it amazes me that few makers of rear view cameras are using them. A few thoughts and comments:
The smartphones are not a good device for displaying images sent by bluetooth. RVs are just too long to have reliable bluetooth coverage.
They are not compatible with the majority (probably all) of the available cameras operating techniques to deliver the image.
If one gets the smartphone up and running as a monitor (which I'll describe how to do) then you have a display that is far superior to ANY monitor supplied with standard backup/observation cameras. I don't know anything about Android devices so I talking about iPhones with Retina display. Wait...I know something about Android, which is I'm just not smart enough to figure out how to use it. Tried a few of them and the user interface was a mystery to me.
One of the few cameras advertised as WiFi (from Tadi) looks good but it has, for most of us, a big drawback. Yes, it is WiFi, but the wifi transmitter (router) box has to be physically connected to the camera. In most cases it is extremely hard or (as with my TT) impossible to run any wires for a camera. It would be nice to be able to run wires so one could use a direct wired camera which is generally superior to wireless models.
Here's how I solved the problems, but it does take a little work. A few pictures are attached. I installed a Sharx 3904 security camera. It is powered by either a Cat 5 cable OR any 12 vdc power. The camera is way ahead of the others because of its 1080p b/g/n transmission capability and has a resolution of 1920x1080.
Since it has its own built in wifi transmitting capability all you need to do is tap off one of the running lights. If your RV came with the pretty much standard Furion prep then there's already a 12 volt wire inside the mounting box that comes alive whenever the running or head lights are on. Once it wakes up, the camera searches for and automatically wirelessly connects to a wifi router. Configuring this system is an easy process.
Now, with the camera up and running you will need your own wifi network installed in the trailer. Easy, easy, easy. I put in a Netgear R6400 router. Like the camera it also gets it power at 12 vdc. Both units come with a 120 volt AC plugin thingy but all that is is a converter. Cut the cords and wire them direct to 12 volts and the units don't know the difference. I mounted the router in one of the forward overhead cabinets in the front bedroom. Power came from the light over the bed and I put a micro switch in so I could turn the router off whenever I don't need it. I can connect to the router wifi out to about 200 feet with my iPhone/iPad.
Now, get it to the iPhone. Two ways...Safari (or for other devices any internet browser) or an app that can be downloaded from the app store or Google Play (I think that's what the Android app store is called). In Safari just put 192.168.1.2 in the http address bar and you are instantly connected to the camera. You have the option to go to settings to set it to your preferences (which are saved) or go to direct view. The Safari/Chrome/IE/Firefox systems are generally used for setup because they all have an unacceptable delay when viewing (about two-three seconds). Using an app (I use MobiLink or LiveCams) still has a delay but its well under one second. Most wireless systems have delays of some sort and the only way around that is a direct wired system.
An added benefit of this system is the camera has standard built in recording capability. It uses an easily accessible internal SD card and, depending on resolution or card size used, continuously records everything it sees for 8-12 hours. Well, it's easily accessible if you don't mind climbing a ladder to open up the camera to remove the card. You can download or view (on smartphone/pc) the video files but they are pretty big..+/- 150 mb each so it takes a minute or more to get to them.
So, it's not for everyone and it's not really cheap (figure about $320 or so for the camera and a top quality router), but if you want to use your smartphone or tablet I think it's the best option available.
Heres the camera:
or, for wider view (better if you want to use it for backing into a campsite, but remember objects in mirror are closer than they appear).
Overall view of the camera position (ignore the antenna on the far left side of the TT...that's used for the Alpha CampPro wifi repeater):
iPhone in use:
iPad mini in use: