In today’s world, the streets, parking lots and highways are more crowded than ever, so it is imperative that the driver always has the advantage, and one of those advantages is to be able to see where you are going when in reverse, whether day or night.
What is a Backup Camera?
As of 2018, every passenger vehicle will have to have a backup camera installed. The backup camera is a camera which the driver uses to check clearance of the area behind them as they reverse, which prevents backup collisions from occurring, as there is no longer a ‘blind spot’. If your model does not come with one of those cameras, you will have to purchase and install one separately. If it sounds a bit confusing, no worries, our aftermarket backup camera review article will help you sort through the basic features, functions and installation of backup cameras.
How Much is a Backup Camera?
The average price range for a backup camera is generally $80.00 to $300.00. As backup cameras will be required on all vehicles in 2018, most of these cameras will be aftermarket units that will require installation. Installation prices will vary from $75.00 and up, depending on the type of system, and features. So, with installation and camera cost, you should plan on the entire package running between $200.00 to $800.00 dollars.
Why We Recommended These 3 Aftermarket Backup Cameras for You?
As you can see getting ready to select the right backup camera can involve many factors, and whenever we are going to lay down cash for something, we want to make sure we get the best product for our money. While all of our backup cameras in this review are of superb quality, at least three stick out as being the absolute best of the best aftermarket backup cameras: Rear View Safety Backup Camera System, Pyle PLCM7500, and the Garmin BC 30 aftermarket backup camera.
Our choice for the best backup camera is the Rear View Safety Backup Camera System, model RVS-770613. This is a top of the line model that is richly loaded with features, even including audio, and with its 130 degree viewing angle, CCD image sensor, and 18 intra-red night vision lights you are getting excellent visibility, day or night. This unit has a high waterproof rating of IP69 as well as a built-in microphone for audio, and specifically designed to be shockproof as well.
Number two in our list, is the Pyle PLCM7500 license plate mount backup camera with a CMOS image sensor. This backup camera has a nice, wide viewing angle of 170 degrees, so you are ensured that your blindspot will be eliminated. As for durability, this camera has a marine grade waterproofing construction with a rating of IP67, and for an added perk, it is also fog resistant. Night vision capability is quite good with a low-Lux light performance of 0.2 Lux.
Garmin BC 30 Wireless Backup Camera enters our list at number three. For those that prefer wireless, this model can work well for you. This backup camera has a CMOS image sensor, a wide viewing angle of 140 degrees horizontal and 115 degrees vertical, and has a waterproof IP rating of IPX7, and you have the ability to add a total of four cameras to increase visibility. The camera is a surface mount type which means that you can mount on the outside of your vehicle, such as your bumper.
Backup Camera Buying Guide (How to Pick a Backup Camera in 2017?)
2018 is coming up fast, so it’s time to start looking for a backup camera. When you begin to research and shop for a backup camera, the choices can be quite overwhelming, as there are hundreds of models, all with their own list of special features and specifications. So, how do you know which one to choose? We’ve done a bit of that work for you, and have presented you with a basic guide on how to choose the best backup camera for you.
1. Which Type of Backup Camera?: Before we get started on the buying guide, it’s a good idea to go over the three main types of backup cameras. The first type is the flush mount camera, or keyhole camera. These are mounted on your trunk keyhole. The second type is the surface mount camera, that is mounted on your vehicles surface, such as your bumper, with mounting brackets. Finally, last camera is the license plate mount camera.
2. Your Personal Needs: Before you even begin to search, assess your personal needs. For instance, those who pull trailers, such as a horse trailer, will need a camera kit built for a trailer. If you work the night shift, you’ll need a camera with features that have good night vision, and a wide viewing angle. If you drive an RV, you may want to look into those kits that are especially made for trucks and RV’s.
3. Your Image Sensor Technology: There are 2 types of image sensor technologies used in backup cameras: The CCD (Charge Coupled Device) and CMOS (Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor. While both function admirably, the CCD is the preferred choice, as it provides the highest quality image, especially at night but it is usually more expensive. The CMOS image sensor is less expensive, and produces a slightly lower quality image. If cost is a factor, then you might consider a CMOS sensor.
4. Viewing Angle: When you are shopping for your camera, go over the specs and check out the image sensor size. The larger the area, the wider the viewing angle, and the wider the viewing angle the better. It is a good idea to choose a camera that has a viewing angle greater than 100 degrees. Remember, the entire purpose for having a backup camera is to eliminate the blind spot when you are backing up, and a small, tiny viewing angle will do you no good whatsoever.
5. Weather Proof: This should go without saying, but your camera must be able to endure the elements in order to function properly. Remember, that weather proof is just that, ‘weather’, so if your vehicle gets submerged or someone uses a high-powered power washer on it, then it might not be able to withstand those. The International Protection (IP) is a double digit number, with the first number indicating how tough the camera is regarding solid objects and waterproof ability is the second digit.
6. Night Vision: Lets face it, your camera is not really of much use if you cannot use it at night or in dimly lit areas, and as already mentioned, cameras with CCD sensors will have greater night vision than those with CMOS sensors. Other factors to consider are the Lux number and LED night vision lights. If your camera is equipped with infrared night vision LEDs, your visibility will increase immensely. Also, if your backup camera of choice has a Lux number in the specs, that will indicate how well the camera will see in dimly lit areas, as the Lux number is a measure of the intensity of light on the area.
Top Rated Aftermarket Backup Camera List
7 Aftermarket Backup Cameras Reviews
The Rear View Safety Backup Camera System, model RVS-770613, is one of the best backup cameras you can purchase. Rich in features, reliable and durable it is capable of assisting you move in reverse no matter day or night. The monitor has a clear as crystal, 7 inch LED digital panel with a dot resolution of 800 x 480, and aspect ration of 16:09, and a mirror image ability along with distance grid lines, which help you judge objects as you are backing up. If you are comparison shopping, then it’s good to know that the field of view is Up 50 degrees, Down 60 degrees, Left/Right 70 degrees.
Your camera input is a 3 channel CVBS, the video system is auto NTSC/PAL with an internal sync system, and a 1/3 inch Sharp color CCD sensor, and your image sensor is 620 TV lines with a lens of 2.5mm and viewing angle of 130 degrees. Night vision is rather powerful with this model, as it has a 50 foot infrared night vision capability. The entire camera is weather proof waterproof with a rating of IP69K, and as for being durable and shockproof, this system has a 20G vibration and 100G impact rating, which is the industries highest. This system comes with a full, one year manufacturers warranty.
Summary- The Rear View Safety Backup Camera System, model RVS-770613 comes with a 7 inch, LED digital color monitor, with a resolution of 800 x 480. The camera is waterproof with an IP rating of IP69, a 130 viewing angle and 18 infra-red night vision lights which can reach 50 feet. There is also a built in microphone on the camera and speakers for it on the monitor in case you need audio. This is a great, all around, fully functional backup camera, and one we heartily recommend.
The Pyle PLCM7500 is a well-built and dependable backup camera with zinc-aluminum die-cast chrome housing, that gives you the convenience of placing your camera and monitor where you want to. The monitor has a 7 inch TFT/LCD mirror screen display, dual RCA video input connector jacks with the ability to add another camera if you see fit. This unit comes with a universal windshield mount holder, and the built-in assist system helps you park easily and a remote control. This unit is classified as a license plate mount camera and, comes with a slim-bar type housing, a swivel angle adjustable cam, composed of a marine grade waterproof construction, and has an IP rating of IP67.
Another nice perk is that it is not only water resistant, but fog resistant as well, which is great for those early morning trips. The display is true color reproduction with a resolution of 656 x 492, and night vision is quite good with this model due to its low-Lux light performance, 0.2 Lux. The viewing angle is very nice at 170 degrees, and it comes with a 17 foot RCA video connection cable. Both the camera and monitor are easy to install and mount, with the monitor mounting to your dashboard, and the camera is placed on the license plate via its slim bar style housing.
Summary- The The Pyle PLCM7500 is a backup camera comes with a 7 inch TFT/LCD high resolution monitor, total pixels: 656 x 492. This is a license plate mount camera, and comes with everything you’ll need to hook it up. Excellent night visibility, wireless remote control, and comes in a black zinc aluminum die cast chrome housing. Two video inputs, CMOS image sensor, 170 degree wide viewing angle, and a 17 foot male to male RCA video cable, waterproof and fog resistant. With its super wide viewing angle, ability to add an additional camera and superb night vision capability, if you work the night shift, this is a good bet.
The Garmin BC 30 wireless backup camera a basic, easy to use backup camera which will help you to take the worry out of pulling into reverse. This backup camera can be used in conjunction with any compatible GPS unit. It uses a 1/3.7 type CMOS camera sensor with a resolution of 640 x 480, a horizontal camera angle of 140 degrees and vertical 115 degrees, and has a waterproof IP rating of IPX7. Comes complete with hardware, documentation, traffic receiver and vehicle power cable, wireless transmitter and power cable, BC 30 wireless backup camera with mounting bracket.
Garmin’s camera is connected via a wireless transmitter which you mount on the outside of your vehicle, such as your back bumper. The wireless transmission type is 2.4 GHz ISM radio band, with a transmission distance of 45 feet, and the transmitters connection will display on the receivers GPS unit. You also have the option to connect your camera to the reverse lights, which means your GPS will display the transmission whenever you start going in reverse, and you also have the option for a constant connection. The IP rating is IPX7, with both the camera and transmitter submersible in 3.3 feet of water for up to 30 minutes.
Summary- The Garmin BC 30 Wireless Backup Camera has a 7 inch display, resolution of 460 x 480, with a CMOS image sensor and vertical viewing angle of 115 degrees, horizontal viewing angle of 140 degrees. This wireless unit has a wireless transmission type of 2.4 GHz ISM radio band with a range of 45 feet, with an ability to support 4 cameras if you so choose. Weather proof with an IP rating of IPX7 and submersible to 3.3 feet of water for up to 30 minutes. We consider this a top choice when it comes to wireless backup cameras, due to its durability, viewing angles and ease of installation.
The iBall 5.8GHz wireless magnetic trailer hitch backup camera is a hardworking, multi-tasking trailer hitch for your car, trucks, RV’s. Most individuals who use a trailer for their boats, motorcycles, or campers find the act of lining up the trailer and hitch to be an absolute headache. By using the iBall wireless hitch camera, you will no longer have to deal with such hassle. When you use the iBall, you will always be able to hitch up your trailer on the first try, every time, and it works with standard trailers as well as gooseneck trailers.
In order to use your iBall, start by making sure it has power by using the rechargeable lithium ion battery, and attached to the back of your vehicle with industrial strength magnetic mounting. Easy to install and use, it comes with a 3.5 inch color LCD monitor, as it is designed for trailer usage, you know it is built to be tough and durable and submersible. Basic facts and features about this backup camera is that it is 100 percent wireless and portable, conveniently plugs right into your vehicles 12 volt power port. If there is nothing obstructing the unit, you get up to 25 feet transmission, 120 degrees viewing angle, and a one year manufacturers warranty.
Summary-The iBall 5.8GHz Wireless Magnetic Trailer Hitch Car Truck Rear View Camera is 100 percent portable and wireless. Installation is fast and easy and can be used with all trailers, from boat, horse and camper. Hitch your trailer at the very first try, every time. Durable and weather resistant, rechargeable lithium ion battery that lasts up to 5 hours, magnetic mounting, 120 degree viewing angle. We love the iBall and it is an absolute must have for anyone with a trailer hitch that is in the market for a backup camera.
The Yada Digital wireless backup camera comes with a 4.3 inch LCD monitor and functions to reduce your blind spot when going into reverse. This monitor adheres to your dash by way of an easy to use suction cup, so moving the monitor until you find the correct placement for you is no trouble at all. This unit as integrated parking assist lines, which work to give you an idea of the relative distance to anything in your rear view as you back up. The designers at Yada specifically sought out to create a design that would minimize video degradation from interference effects.
Installation is really quite simple, as it is a license plate type backup camera, so you’ll just install it over the plate. The Yada provides good night visibility, as well as being weather resistant with a waterproof rating of IP67. When you open the box, you’ll find the 4.3 inch dash monitor, a weatherproof rear view camera, a windshield mount for dash monitor, a 12 volt/24 volt power adapter, a hardwire power cable for your dash monitor for you to use if you want, a mounting kid, and user manual.
Summary- The Yada backup camera is a basic unit with a 4.3 inch display, night vision ability, and a waterproof rating of IP67. Integrated parking assist lines, minimal video degradation, easy installation over your back license plate, the monitor attaches to your dash by way of a convenient suction cup. This is a simple, direct to the point, reliable wireless unit.
The eRapta ERW01 Wireless Backup Camera is a great choice for those of you who choose to go wireless. This dash mounted, wireless unit is versatile, to say the least, as you can use it as a backup camera, a forward view camera, and security camera. The voltage range of 12 volts to 24 volts allows you to use this camera on vehicle types ranging from a large, semi-trailer, RV, box truck, motorcoach, 5th wheel, trailer or bus. Easily reduces your blind spots and the wireless communication between the camera and monitor is good for up to 66 feet, or 20 meters. In order to the camera to function you’ll need a 12 volt to 36 volt power supply.
The waterproof camera has a wide viewing angle of 120 to 170 degrees and a waterproof rating of IP69 so will work extremely well in all weather conditions. The full color, 7 inch TFT LCD monitor can display the image as a mirror or forward view image, and comes with an infrared night vision feature with 18 infrared lights. The monitor offers you the choice to use a remote control or button control, and you get screen sets for bus, truck, caravan and cars. The wireless camera has a 2.4GHz video transmitter with a SHARP 600 CMOS image sensor, transmission 100 meters in the open air.
Summary- The eRapta ERW01 Wireless Backup Camera by AJ Electronics has a high quality, 7 inch TFT LCD widescreen monitor with remote control. The camera is 2.4GHz video transmitter, infrared for good night vision ability, CMOS sensor and 100 meter transmission in open air. 12 volt to 24 volt power lets you accommodate anything from a semi, box truck, RV, motorcoach, 5th wheel, trailer or bus. Excellent choice for those who need a waterproof, tough camera for their vehicles as it can also be used as a security cam.
The PYvideo rear backup camera is for the following cars: Toyota Camry, Corolla, Prius, Rav4 and more. This unit is a plug and play unit with a harness, which is designed to assist you with the installation as the harness/cable makes connection extremely easy. There is no need for a monitor, as this unit uses the 6.1 LCD screen that already comes with your vehicle. The camera has a wide lens angle of 170 degrees to eliminate blind spots, and a resolution of 720 x 576, S/N ratio. For night visibility the illumination is 0.01 Lux, and waterproof rating is IP68.
The adapter which comes with the unit plugs into your onboard, factory radio, and the camera only shows an image on the screen when you pull into reverse. This unit has 520 TV lines, and an HD camera which delivers to you a solid, clear image for daytime as well as night. The camera is 6 volts, and built to match Toyota’s onboard radio. Installation is simple and it comes with a 1 year manufacturers warranty. You get the backup camera, harness to radio, video and power cables.
Summary- The PYvideo Rear Backup Camera is a kit that is designed to work with certain vehicle models by plugging into their onboard radio. It is fully plug and play, has an HD camera with 520 TV lines. The 6 volt camera will match your vehicles radio output, easy installation, and no need for a monitor as it utilizes the 6.1 LCD screen that came with your car. Simply put, this model is built for certain types of vehicles, is easy to install and requires no monitor.
How to install a backup camera on a car?
While it is possible to install one of these cameras on your own, if you are not handy with tools, we strongly suggest that you hire a professional to install the camera and monitor to your vehicle. Below we have outlined the basic steps involved in installing a backup camera, but in no way should these steps be seen as a guide for your installation, as you should either hire a professional, or closely follow the instructions that come with your manual, nothing else.
Note: Before you do any wiring of any kind on your vehicle, please disconnect you cars battery.
1. First Things First: Turn off your phone, get centered and prepare your work-space. While the installation of a backup camera is not hard, it is important that you set aside time, as well as gather any tools you will need, such as a drill and screwdriver. The installation of backup cameras will vary with each model. Some models use suction cups, magnets and others use screws, drilling and brackets, so pay close attention the the instructions that come with your model.
2. Attach the Camera to the Back of Your Car: Follow the instructions for your model. Some units use an industrial magnet to secure the camera, while others are mounted with brackets and screws and require drilling, and have a power cable which attaches to your car’s reversing light and the camera’s power supply. Whatever the model, you want the camera to be centered on your vehicle.
3. Running the Cables: Most kits will have a power cable to run power to your screen, a cable to run power to your camera, and a video cable that goes from the back to the front of your car. Depending on where you mount your camera (surface mount, keyhole mount or license plate mount), pay close attention to the positioning of the cables, making sure the wires do not come near anything with sharp edges, are not kinked or pinched, and far away from any hot areas or moving car parts. A good rule of thumb is to run your wiring along the chassis rail. Fasten and secure all cables with zip ties, so nothing is loose, flopping around, or can get caught in anything.
4. Monitor: Each unit may be slightly different regarding monitor placement, as some use a suction cup, industrial adhesive, and others require mounting with a bracket. If you have a touchscreen radio that is backup camera ready, simply connect your camera to the radio’s backup camera ready input. Whichever unit you own, secure your monitor, making certain the angle is easy for you to see when backing up. Regarding cables, again make sure they are zip tied and away from areas of your vehicle that are hot or have moving parts.
5. The Wireless Unit: With the wireless unit, you won’t be running any cables through your car to the dash. Instead, you’ll have a small control box transmitter. With a basic wireless unit, wiring will be threaded from the camera to a small transmitter, which is usually placed in your vehicle’s interior and can be held in place with velcro.
The Final Words (Conclusion)
Backup cameras are lightweight, tough, resistant to the elements and allow the driver to see clearly when going into reverse. These cameras are especially useful for those who drive SUV’s, RV’s or mini-vans, giving them the field of vision they need to ensure they will not roll over their child’s bicycle. Most of these cameras are also equipped with sensors that allow you to see well in dimly lit areas, as well as parking assist lines, which can help you judge just how close objects really are. We hope you found our aftermarket backup camera reviews article informative in giving you a better understanding in how to choose the best aftermarket backup camera for your vehicle.