View from behind campervan.
Photo by Rachel Lees on Unsplash

Reversing can be a tricky skill to learn. Good thing today we have the option of installing a wee gadget to enhance the accessibility of squeezing into tight spots. Reversing cameras will make everyone envy your backing skills at your next holiday trip. There are a few things that you might want to consider to make sure your camera can optimise your backing experience instead of ruining it.

 

Things look out for

Audio

Audio could be an advantage if you have a larger vehicle which requires some assistance from someone standing outside the vehicle giving verbal guidance.

Field of view

Field of view consists of the sensor type, sensor size and focal length. The larger the sensor the wider the field of view. Bigger sensors provide better quality.

Weather resistant

If you choose a wired system then you will need to choose wires that will be appropriate for all conditions. This includes being waterproof and UV resistant.

Mirror image

This means that the image is displayed to you the same way if you were looking in a mirror. Almost all cameras will have this, but if doesn’t you’ll be sure to get your rights and lefts mixed up, so don’t buy it.

Twin camera

A twin camera is two cameras on one mount. One camera provides a wide angle for a view of the surrounding area. The other camera provides a rear view so you can see a long view of what's happening 100 meters away. For these types of cameras you will have to have a monitor that accepts two input feeds.

Night vision

Buying a camera with infrared capability can be ideal if you arrive at your destination a little later. With this capability you can see around 6 to 9 meters away which is plenty visibility to stop and avoid any accidents.

Power supply

Before you purchase and install your reversing camera, make sure the reverse system matches the vehicle voltage. If you make sure to purchase a variable voltage you may find this more durable. If not you can fit a voltage regulator to protect it from any chance of current surges.

Sensors

There are two types of sensors that you should be aware of. A CCD (Charge-coupled device) and CMOS (Complementary Metal-oxide Semiconductor) CCD sensor perform well in low light situations. CMOS are the cheaper alternative but have been improved over the years to perform just as well as CCD sensors.

Wired or wireless

The difference between wired and wireless comes down to two things ; reliability and ease of installment. Wireless is the easiest to install but can be disrupted by other wirelessly controlled devices. This causes stripes to appear on the monitor screen. Therefore, wired is your best bet when it comes to reliability but can be tedious and more expensive to install.

Mounts

There are three ways that a reversing camera can be mounted; surface, flush or license plate. License plate and flush mounts are more suited for cars while surface mounts are better for motorhomes and caravans. This means that cameras are mounted high up on the rear of the vehicle giving you a better view for reversing.

Monitors

Monitors are a crucial part of having a reversing camera. Depending on how many cameras you have will depend on how many display screens you need.  If you have an existing screen in or on the dashboard and it has an auxiliary input, buying a camera to suit this may be your best bet. There are also different display options such as LCD flat screen, visor mounted display and rear view mirror integration.

Auto on

If you connect the reversing camera circuit to the reversing lights circuit you will be able to have the cameras turn on at the same time when you put it into reverse - which is ideal. If you have a twin fitted camera, you can have the rear view camera running full time in place of a rear view mirror. This means that you would have it wired to activate when the ignition is turned on.

You’ll find that most reversing cameras will have all of these things but it is good to be aware of what makes a good reversing camera set up - just in case. Browse our range of reversing cameras and monitors here.