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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > AUDIO/VIDEO + BLUETOOTH + Electronics/Alarm/Software > Backup Camera problem



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      05-07-2011, 10:11 PM   #1
yellodart
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Backup Camera problem

So i just installed a dynavin head unit, love it btw.

i ordered some 34 buck camera for it off ebay, maybe not the best thing to do, but it's what i got for now.

the camera is powered from the drivers side reverse light, checked with a multimeter. it's piggie backed in the connector under the fingers around the stock wires.

when i put the car in reverse, the camera comes on, looks great, then within 5-10 seconds it begins to flicker and goes back. my screen says no signal and if i put it in gear and back to reverse, it won't come on. if i restart the car it will work for a few seconds again.

any ideas?
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      05-08-2011, 03:03 AM   #2
liliceman13300
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I had weird things happen with my backup camera. It was something like $30 on Amazon and worked pretty well when I tested it off the car with a 12volt power supply and a TV. When I hooked it up to the car it would work 50% of the time but mostly when it was cold and rainy. I had the car power it and hooked it up to an external TV so I could see if it was the head unit or not. It ended up being the female RCA jack that was wired to the camera had a poor connection and only when it was wet or when it was twisted in 1 absolutely perfect spot it would work. I ended up cutting the RCA wires and just soldering them; now it works 100% of the time.

You should hook the camera up to an external source like a small TV/LCD and see if it's getting full signal. If it does the same thing as before then hook it up to an external power supply and TV/LCD. Just try to limit the conditions of things that could be bad. A multimeter is good for checking the power to the camera and making sure its a steady voltage. Hooking a DVD player up to the RCA line and seeing if the head unit shows it non stop can let you know if the problem is with the camera.

Good luck!
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what are u doing on these forums? you dont even drive a bmw or a respected car so i suggest you take your opinions to another forum. Thank you
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      05-08-2011, 11:35 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by liliceman13300 View Post
You should hook the camera up to an external source like a small TV/LCD and see if it's getting full signal. If it does the same thing as before then hook it up to an external power supply and TV/LCD. Just try to limit the conditions of things that could be bad. A multimeter is good for checking the power to the camera and making sure its a steady voltage. Hooking a DVD player up to the RCA line and seeing if the head unit shows it non stop can let you know if the problem is with the camera.

Good luck!
thanks, i'll check my plugs today. it's just weird how if it's on for a while, it won't work.

in other news, my last car was a cr-v :-)
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      05-10-2011, 10:27 PM   #4
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It sounds like you wired the camera's main power directly from the reverse light. That won't work. There may be a constant 12V but there isn't enough current to keep it on. That's why it cuts off after a short while. You need to use a relay switch. The backup up light will turn the relay switch on and the main power will come from the battery. Give that a shot.
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      05-11-2011, 12:11 AM   #5
liliceman13300
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rolo2285 View Post
It sounds like you wired the camera's main power directly from the reverse light. That won't work. There may be a constant 12V but there isn't enough current to keep it on. That's why it cuts off after a short while. You need to use a relay switch. The backup up light will turn the relay switch on and the main power will come from the battery. Give that a shot.
I think using the relay is a shot but if the camera needed more current the fuse would blow. My camera specs says it only needs 300ma at 12v which is close to nothing.
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      05-11-2011, 07:38 AM   #6
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mine is 300ma max, too. the instructions the seller had were to wire it to the light, and some retrofit guide i saw somewhere else too. i thought the relay switches were more for older models that couldn't figure out reverse without having that signal.
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      05-11-2011, 01:57 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yellodart View Post
mine is 300ma max, too. the instructions the seller had were to wire it to the light, and some retrofit guide i saw somewhere else too. i thought the relay switches were more for older models that couldn't figure out reverse without having that signal.
You can use a relay for it, and I guess it is worth testing to see if it solves the problem. The reverse signal will become the 12v trigger (86 on a Bosch). I think your problem is something else though.
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      05-12-2011, 01:52 PM   #8
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Try this, turn on the car, but without starting the engine, put it to reverse, camera should work (for as long as the car is on). If this is true, the voltage to the reverse might drop below 12v after engine started, in this case relay is needed. This is what happen to mine. I measured the voltage to my reverse light after engine started, it only has like 10v max, and yes, after using a relay (like others have mentioned) it worked well. Your reverse light is only going to trigger the relay on/off.
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      05-12-2011, 05:06 PM   #9
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+2
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      05-12-2011, 06:04 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scanboy View Post
Try this, turn on the car, but without starting the engine, put it to reverse, camera should work (for as long as the car is on). If this is true, the voltage to the reverse might drop below 12v after engine started, in this case relay is needed. This is what happen to mine. I measured the voltage to my reverse light after engine started, it only has like 10v max, and yes, after using a relay (like others have mentioned) it worked well. Your reverse light is only going to trigger the relay on/off.
10 volt max?? Something is wrong!! Once that alternator starts it is normal to range between 12 and 14 volts with 14 being a very typical number!
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      05-14-2011, 04:42 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scanboy View Post
Try this, turn on the car, but without starting the engine, put it to reverse, camera should work (for as long as the car is on). If this is true, the voltage to the reverse might drop below 12v after engine started, in this case relay is needed. This is what happen to mine. I measured the voltage to my reverse light after engine started, it only has like 10v max, and yes, after using a relay (like others have mentioned) it worked well. Your reverse light is only going to trigger the relay on/off.
well, 1 point, the voltage drops. that would explain a lot and it's very hard to test it by myself. consequently trying to tie it to the other lights in that cluster is the same or less volts so no help there.

but i have no idea why i'd need a relay for that prob. i guess older ones have to have it based on signal means the cars in R. mine has those 2 purple wires behind the head unit, you plug them together if you have a camera, it gets a 'trigger' from somewhere else.

things i can check, the good 'ol 14 volts in my license plate light that i already had to tap into and my LED doesn't use much of.

i'm going to say problem solved, plus i can now switch to my camera whenever i want to. thanks for the help guys!
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      05-15-2011, 05:52 AM   #12
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How did you solve the flickering?!!

Hi, I've just been searching everywhere for the last 4 hours trying to find a solution since I'm having the exact same problem on my x5.

strange thing is, I am already using the relay - I even bought a second relay in case it was the fault of the first one and It still flickers like crazy when the engine is on.

The picture is fine when the battery is on (and car in reverse) but as soon as I turn it over, the flickers make it useless.

since I'm using a relay and have it wired the way all the tutorials suggest, would you recommend I use an alternate power source for the camera?

Please help - I'm going insane!
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      05-15-2011, 10:45 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kip96 View Post
Hi, I've just been searching everywhere for the last 4 hours trying to find a solution since I'm having the exact same problem on my x5.

strange thing is, I am already using the relay - I even bought a second relay in case it was the fault of the first one and It still flickers like crazy when the engine is on.

The picture is fine when the battery is on (and car in reverse) but as soon as I turn it over, the flickers make it useless.

since I'm using a relay and have it wired the way all the tutorials suggest, would you recommend I use an alternate power source for the camera?

Please help - I'm going insane!
the relay is really if you need a trigger to tell the head unit or video screen when to turn on. some use a power signal, hence the relay and camera wires that have an extra wire along with the video. some of them just have a video, no video, means not in reverse, or it gets that trigger somewhere else like mine does. just poke around your connections and test the voltage. if your reverse light won't cut it, the only other thing running in that area is probably your license plate light like mine. if you can't get into it, or it won't work, you'll have to find another line. you can either run a wire all the way to the fuse panel, or the near cigarette lighter should be a 12v switched line. just be sure to test and make sure your power is good enough for what you're doing.
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      05-15-2011, 12:04 PM   #14
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This shows how advanced our systems really are.

To protect from system overloads, the car monitors current draw from many of the lighting units. If the draw is too low (LED for example) the system will trigger a "bulb out" warning. If the draw is too high, then the system will shut down to protect itself.
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      05-15-2011, 06:06 PM   #15
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licence plate light

just wondering, when you tapped power from the licence plate light, do you need to have the lights on in order for the camera to get power?
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      05-16-2011, 08:48 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kip96 View Post
just wondering, when you tapped power from the licence plate light, do you need to have the lights on in order for the camera to get power?
hmmm, i leave mine on all the time so i really haven't noticed... i assume that the license plate lights are always on, but i could be wrong.
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      05-16-2011, 09:34 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kip96 View Post
just wondering, when you tapped power from the licence plate light, do you need to have the lights on in order for the camera to get power?
after checking, yes. you have to have lights on... don't think that anything else is on all the time back there unless you leave some form of lights on, so you have to run another wire if you don't want to do it that way. unless someone has another idea. i'm out of em
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      05-18-2011, 04:17 AM   #18
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power

Thanks fellas,

got it working today, I needed to use an alternate power source to get it right - I ended up tapping into one of the random wiring looms in the boot (trunk) that wasn't plugged into anything, got a good power source and it's all running perfectly!!
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      05-18-2011, 04:41 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kip96 View Post
Thanks fellas,

got it working today, I needed to use an alternate power source to get it right - I ended up tapping into one of the random wiring looms in the boot (trunk) that wasn't plugged into anything, got a good power source and it's all running perfectly!!
oh bmw... we love how every car is wired for 37 extras that only 2 people will order :-) should take a pic of that if it's still torn apart. i'm sure a lot would to love to see it. could you get your cable through that boot? mine is running next to it.
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      05-19-2011, 05:09 AM   #20
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I installed the dynavin V5 on my 06 320i and bought a wireless reverse camera to avoid me running wires through the car. The screen image flickers sometimes, but not enough to worry, as the image is not really off.
Im prepared to accept it as it is an aftermarket made up from several components from different manufacturers.
I made some notes on the way I installed it at this link.
http://www.e90post.com/forums/showpo...&postcount=350

Last edited by 320beemer; 05-19-2011 at 05:16 AM..
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      12-10-2011, 08:41 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 320beemer View Post
I installed the dynavin V5 on my 06 320i and bought a wireless reverse camera to avoid me running wires through the car. The screen image flickers sometimes, but not enough to worry, as the image is not really off.
Im prepared to accept it as it is an aftermarket made up from several components from different manufacturers.
I made some notes on the way I installed it at this link.
http://www.e90post.com/forums/showpo...&postcount=350
Using your instructions (thanks 320!) I also installed a wireless camera into the Dynavin. Power for the camera and wireless transmitter is from the reverse light, which in my e92 must be run through the boot.

To no surprise I am having the exact issues described here - "crazy flickering"...haha. I don't think mine is as stable as what you describe. Interestingly, when i actually start backing up the image comes in clearly, but when i return to an idle situation it goes "crazy" again.

A voltage issue sounds plausible (yes, it is difficult to assess the reverse signal by yourself, and I'm not sure that i trust my wife to keep the car in reverse while i'm in the trunk checking the signal).

I think I will try a relay, but not sure where the most convenience place to pull stable 12V might be. Someone mentioned an extra wire in the cluster running into the trunk - would this be e90 only?

An way to safely pull directly from the battery?

Thanks!
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      12-11-2011, 07:59 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pkirk View Post
Using your instructions (thanks 320!) I also installed a wireless camera into the Dynavin. Power for the camera and wireless transmitter is from the reverse light, which in my e92 must be run through the boot.

To no surprise I am having the exact issues described here - "crazy flickering"...haha. I don't think mine is as stable as what you describe. Interestingly, when i actually start backing up the image comes in clearly, but when i return to an idle situation it goes "crazy" again.

A voltage issue sounds plausible (yes, it is difficult to assess the reverse signal by yourself, and I'm not sure that i trust my wife to keep the car in reverse while i'm in the trunk checking the signal).

I think I will try a relay, but not sure where the most convenience place to pull stable 12V might be. Someone mentioned an extra wire in the cluster running into the trunk - would this be e90 only?

An way to safely pull directly from the battery?

Thanks!
Anyone with ideas about this?
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