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2015 GLA 4matic
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I have seen so many near-misses when driving. Like, when a truck coming off the highway was slamming on his breaks at the end of the ramp, one of his wheels (full wheel, not just tire) came off and WAS ON FIRE as it rolled past within inches in front of my car! That's one that I wish I had on video to share on social media! But I don't like anything obstructing my view, have more than enough screens in my face, and I didn't want to have to remember to hide it sometimes. So, I looked into these dashcams that are built into a housing that replaces the housing between the rearview mirror and the rain sensor. The seller asked me to send them photos of my mirror before purchasing, confirmed the fit/color, and then I purchased and waited for the unit to arrive from China.

Installation was such a cake-walk I almost feel like I shouldn't be posting this as something "I did to my GLA". It was so simple, you just pop off the old housing, unplug something from a wiring harness (probably the power to the rain sensor? I didn't bother to figure that out), plug this thing in as a pass-through for power, and snap the new housing which contains the camera into place.

The camera records to a microSD card and connects to my phone via an app to view photos and change some settings. It seems to record good quality and I see that it sensed motion a few times in the night while the car was parked, recording little loops of video.

What I love is how stealthy this thing is. And how easy it was to give it power without running any wires anywhere. It looks OEM to me. No one will ever notice it. Here are before and after photos:

Tire Automotive tire Wheel Motor vehicle Automotive mirror
Hood Automotive tire Automotive mirror Automotive exterior Personal luxury car
Vehicle Hood Automotive mirror Automotive lighting Automotive tire
Automotive lighting Automotive tire Automotive mirror Fender Automotive exterior
 

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I had questioned the need for a dashcam. However, I did end up getting one. Some months later, a drive cut across three lanes of traffic and hit me. I called his insurance company to file a claim and told them I had a video. I sent the video to his insurance company, and 30 minutes later, they called and told me they would cover repairs. That changed my opinion of dashcams. Now wonder is there a need for a rearview camera on the rear glass.
 

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MY18 GLA 220d, MY 18 GLA 250 4matic edition 1.
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I have seen so many near-misses when driving. Like, when a truck coming off the highway was slamming on his breaks at the end of the ramp, one of his wheels (full wheel, not just tire) came off and WAS ON FIRE as it rolled past within inches in front of my car! That's one that I wish I had on video to share on social media! But I don't like anything obstructing my view, have more than enough screens in my face, and I didn't want to have to remember to hide it sometimes. So, I looked into these dashcams that are built into a housing that replaces the housing between the rearview mirror and the rain sensor. The seller asked me to send them photos of my mirror before purchasing, confirmed the fit/color, and then I purchased and waited for the unit to arrive from China.

Installation was such a cake-walk I almost feel like I shouldn't be posting this as something "I did to my GLA". It was so simple, you just pop off the old housing, unplug something from a wiring harness (probably the power to the rain sensor? I didn't bother to figure that out), plug this thing in as a pass-through for power, and snap the new housing which contains the camera into place.

The camera records to a microSD card and connects to my phone via an app to view photos and change some settings. It seems to record good quality and I see that it sensed motion a few times in the night while the car was parked, recording little loops of video.

What I love is how stealthy this thing is. And how easy it was to give it power without running any wires anywhere. It looks OEM to me. No one will ever notice it. Here are before and after photos:

View attachment 27192 View attachment 27193 View attachment 27194 View attachment 27195
Very neat installation indeed. I have seen these advertised on Facebook. Am very tempted.
 

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2015 GLA 4matic
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I have barely started using it yet, and so far so good. It seems to take forever to download video through the App, but I'm not sure how much I would use that. The main thing is to have video stored on the memory card in the event it captured something you need. Like, when our neighbor's house was broken into and my husband's dashcam (he was parked on the street) captured the license plate number of the burglar and that footage eventually led to her arrest! Not the typical use for a dashcam, but it certainly a bonus for my neighbor! Plus, it's just so much fun when a cop walks up to ask for your license and registration and says, "just to let you know this conversation is being recorded..." and you can reply, "oh, I know it is...because my dashcam is running, sir!" Not that I plan to get pulled over much. At least that's the plan.

I'll post a review of this unit after I've had some time with it. I do love how discreet the installation is. And how easy it was to plug in without splicing or needing to run a line to the fuse box. I could easily take it out if I take the car in for service (you know, in case they decide my leaky radiator or failed transmission is the result of "aftermarket modifications")!
 

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The same Chinese company sells the 10.25" Touch screen center display. This Integrates the NTG functionality with a lot of other features. I bought this screen for my C63, which didn't have even a rearview cam. If you have the 10.25, buying the integrated housing dashcam brings up additional functionality. Videos from the dashcam can be viewed on the display. Maybe even some storage can happen in the storage or card slot of the display.
I never bought the dashcam, because went through the trouble to integrate a regular dashcam into the housing of the rain sensor, before I found out that this wheel had already been invented.
Now, I was gonna transfer that kit of dashcams from the C63 to the GLA45 and buy the integrated dashcam for the C63.
So maybe I'll buy this cam instead.
 

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Very tempted too, 170* view, night capability, looping when data card is full, and looks totally stock. I'd like to see real driving video, but specs say the vid quality should be good.
 

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I have seen so many near-misses when driving. Like, when a truck coming off the highway was slamming on his breaks at the end of the ramp, one of his wheels (full wheel, not just tire) came off and WAS ON FIRE as it rolled past within inches in front of my car! That's one that I wish I had on video to share on social media! But I don't like anything obstructing my view, have more than enough screens in my face, and I didn't want to have to remember to hide it sometimes. So, I looked into these dashcams that are built into a housing that replaces the housing between the rearview mirror and the rain sensor. The seller asked me to send them photos of my mirror before purchasing, confirmed the fit/color, and then I purchased and waited for the unit to arrive from China.

Installation was such a cake-walk I almost feel like I shouldn't be posting this as something "I did to my GLA". It was so simple, you just pop off the old housing, unplug something from a wiring harness (probably the power to the rain sensor? I didn't bother to figure that out), plug this thing in as a pass-through for power, and snap the new housing which contains the camera into place.

The camera records to a microSD card and connects to my phone via an app to view photos and change some settings. It seems to record good quality and I see that it sensed motion a few times in the night while the car was parked, recording little loops of video.

What I love is how stealthy this thing is. And how easy it was to give it power without running any wires anywhere. It looks OEM to me. No one will ever notice it. Here are before and after photos:

View attachment 27192 View attachment 27193 View attachment 27194 View attachment 27195
Good information Christine. Thank you. Just wondering how can you have the live realtime images ( if not in your mobile phone- I assume that is what you mean) while driving / parking. Appreciate your reply on this. Guess -Realtime live images are important than the recording.
 

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This does look like a very smooth integration option for a dashcam. I too would like to see a video sample. Any chance you could post up a small clip? Even if it's boring and not much happening. Doesn't need to be a wheel on fire or anything, ha. Just daily traffic.

The only concern that came to mind for me is security. In my line of work we are drilled not to trust software or certain types of electronic products coming out of China. Surveillance cameras are a known item on this list, and were found in 1000's of secure government buildings, and countless businesses and homes. They have a backdoor in the firmware that allows the maker to see everything the camera sees, whenever they want, and even control it. Here's a quick example: https://www.tomshardware.com/news/huawei-security-backdoors-surveillance-cameras-firmware

I'm not a "conspiracy guy" like that, and I'm not suggesting these cameras would have that though. And I guess if you never link it to your phone there would be zero risk. It's just something we are educated on in my industry to reduce security risks. All that said, I'll probably get one if the video quality is good. Looks like a dang smooth option!
 

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2015 Mercedes-Benz GLA45 AMG 4MATIC
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I have seen so many near-misses when driving. Like, when a truck coming off the highway was slamming on his breaks at the end of the ramp, one of his wheels (full wheel, not just tire) came off and WAS ON FIRE as it rolled past within inches in front of my car! That's one that I wish I had on video to share on social media! But I don't like anything obstructing my view, have more than enough screens in my face, and I didn't want to have to remember to hide it sometimes. So, I looked into these dashcams that are built into a housing that replaces the housing between the rearview mirror and the rain sensor. The seller asked me to send them photos of my mirror before purchasing, confirmed the fit/color, and then I purchased and waited for the unit to arrive from China.

Installation was such a cake-walk I almost feel like I shouldn't be posting this as something "I did to my GLA". It was so simple, you just pop off the old housing, unplug something from a wiring harness (probably the power to the rain sensor? I didn't bother to figure that out), plug this thing in as a pass-through for power, and snap the new housing which contains the camera into place.

The camera records to a microSD card and connects to my phone via an app to view photos and change some settings. It seems to record good quality and I see that it sensed motion a few times in the night while the car was parked, recording little loops of video.

What I love is how stealthy this thing is. And how easy it was to give it power without running any wires anywhere. It looks OEM to me. No one will ever notice it. Here are before and after photos:

View attachment 27192 View attachment 27193 View attachment 27194 View attachment 27195
That is clean, nice find!
 

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This does look like a very smooth integration option for a dashcam. I too would like to see a video sample. Any chance you could post up a small clip? Even if it's boring and not much happening. Doesn't need to be a wheel on fire or anything, ha. Just daily traffic.

The only concern that came to mind for me is security. In my line of work we are drilled not to trust software or certain types of electronic products coming out of China. Surveillance cameras are a known item on this list, and were found in 1000's of secure government buildings, and countless businesses and homes. They have a backdoor in the firmware that allows the maker to see everything the camera sees, whenever they want, and even control it. Here's a quick example: https://www.tomshardware.com/news/huawei-security-backdoors-surveillance-cameras-firmware

I'm not a "conspiracy guy" like that, and I'm not suggesting these cameras would have that though. And I guess if you never link it to your phone there would be zero risk. It's just something we are educated on in my industry to reduce security risks. All that said, I'll probably get one if the video quality is good. Looks like a dang smooth option!
As the dashcam is not connected to the internet think it would not be monitored as it is offline.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
As the dashcam is not connected to the internet think it would not be monitored as it is offline.
The camera is an isolated system, not connected to the car's systems in any way. I guess if you are worried about someone hacking into the footage via WiFi, you could probably shut that off or remove the antenna and rely on getting your footage just from the physical Micro SD card. But, for someone to hack into your camera via Wifi, they'd have to be physically close to your car, the camera would have to be powered up, and they'd still have to break in by hacking the password...just to steal your footage? Maybe I'm naive, but I cannot imagine anything being worth the trouble. But, hey, I am always being told that I'm not paranoid enough, so maybe I'm not thinking like a cybercriminal!
 

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As the dashcam is not connected to the internet think it would not be monitored as it is offline.
The camera is an isolated system, not connected to the car's systems in any way. I guess if you are worried about someone hacking into the footage via WiFi, you could probably shut that off or remove the antenna and rely on getting your footage just from the physical Micro SD card. But, for someone to hack into your camera via Wifi, they'd have to be physically close to your car, the camera would have to be powered up, and they'd still have to break in by hacking the password...just to steal your footage? Maybe I'm naive, but I cannot imagine anything being worth the trouble. But, hey, I am always being told that I'm not paranoid enough, so maybe I'm not thinking like a cybercriminal!
I agree that the risk is very minimal, and hardly worth discussion. Like I mentioned, it's just drilled into us at work so I randomly thought of it.

I wouldn't have much concern at all with what the camera can see or has recorded at any given time. The main concern would be when you connect your phone to the device to download the videos. I'm not sure if there's a way for the device to access any other info on your phone (photo/video library?) at that time or not. I assume you have to grant access in order to download videos. Maybe less likely with iPhone? And again, easily remedied by using an older phone for that, with nothing on it.

It looks so smoothly integrated, I'll probably get one for each of our cars. Seems so slick and complete. Track day fun too...

I certainly appreciate you sharing this @Christine_S !!!
Share a video sample for us if you can please!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I thought I would post an update on this "dash" cam.

I've had this for roughly 15 months. I love the stealthiness of it. No one knows it's there. The Amazon reviews complain about having to connect to the camera via WiFi (because there's no screen) but I don't mind having to connect to the camera via wifi to retrieve video because not needing a screen is what makes it so tiny and discrete. Besides, I'm hoping never to need the video!

I did have a problem with it, however. Sometime in October or so, I realized that my phone wasn't picking up the WiFi SSID anymore. I thought maybe the camera wasn't working, so I pulled the SD Card and saw that it was still recording videos, so I didn't worry much and thought maybe it was something to do with my new phone.

However, sometime in November, someone blew a stop sign right in front of me and I had to swerve to avoid hitting them. So, I pulled the card to see the video (I admit it, I wanted to see if it was my neighbor or some other @$$#01e in a white GLE). I discovered that it is a PITA to view the view the videos from the card because, apparently the manufacturer uses some weird Codec. So, I decided it would be best to get the app working with the thing again. Troubleshooting some more, I couldn't pick up an SSID from it with any phone. I spent a few weeks going back and forth with the manufacturer's tech support in China (time differences made for some asynchronous communication, but they were always responsive, but their troubleshooting processes were sound). Finally, they determined that it was indeed hardware. I was :cry: because it was out of warranty. But, the company was so kind---they told me to ship it to them and they'd repair it. I did. They did. They had it back to me a few days after they received it. It's working great.

I'll try to remember to post some video samples soon.
 

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I appreciate the update. I have this product on an amazon wishlist, has been there since you started the thread. I haven’t been able to bring myself to pull the trigger on it, but I tell myself every other month to just buy it. I like reading the feedback even months later.
 
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