This installation photo blog will show how we hardwire-installed a Thinkware U1000 4K 2-Channel dash cam into a 2022 Subaru Outback Wilderness (with Subaru Eyesight). If you’re considering installing a dash cam, we recommend the BlackboxMyCar Essential Install Kit - it comes with a circuit tester, trim remover tool, and other handy tools to make the project more manageable.
Dash Cam Installation: 2022 Subaru Outback Wilderness x Thinkware U1000 (with Subaru Eyesight)
From the outside, looking in from the front of the vehicle, the U1000 blends in well with the car. Read along to find out what we did and for tips and tricks that you can use on your own installation as well.
One of the common concerns when installing a dash cam in a newer Subaru is the Eyesight Camera sensors, Subaru's exclusive advanced driver-assist system. It is essentially a 2-camera system that monitors activity in the road head to help you avoid potential danger. But because of the Eyesight sensors, the area on the front windshield is typically a no-go zone for dash cams, radar detectors, etc.
So, where is the best place to mount the dash cam?
Mounting the Thinkware U1000 front and rear cameras (dual dash cam system)
The Thinkware U1000 front camera is mounted behind the rearview mirror, right next to the mount for the rearview mirror and right in the blind spots in-between the two Eyesight camera sensors.
Before installing a dash cam in any car, you would check how far the wiper goes because if you mount it above the wiper's reach, it will not have a clear vision. And because of the Subaru Eyesight system, we also need to ensure the dash cam is mounted outside the Eyesight camera's field of view.
For this Thinkware U1000 installation, we installed the front camera just behind the rearview mirror - it's right next to the mount for the rearview mirror and right in the blind spots in-between the two Eyesight camera sensors.
Nearly all dash cams will fit in this area - but we strongly recommend a small wedge-shaped or a cylindrical tube-shaped dash cam with a sticky adhesive mount that attaches right against your windshield. Try to avoid dash cams that use a hanging mount, as they will take up more space and potentially get in the way of the Eyesight sensors.
Since Eyesight only exists in the front, mounting the rear dash cam will be like any other. We typically mount the rear dash cam on the windshield, along the edges, with the top middle being our preferred mounting location. This placement allows us to snake the cables through the top headliner for a cleaner finish.
Locating the fuse panel
Use the circuit tester to locate a constant fuse and a ignition-based fuse for the hardwire installation. You will also need to find a good ground bolt.
For this installation, the customer requested a hardwire installation to unlock the dash cam's parking mode recording capabilities. If you don't need parking mode capabilities, you can opt for a more straightforward installation using the 12V power cable and your vehicle's cigarette power socket.
Are you looking for a parking mode solution that doesn't require hardwiring? We've got two! You can use an OBD-II Power Cable and your car's OBD port as a power source. Suppose you want to eliminate any wear and tear on your car battery. In that case, we strongly recommend a dedicated dash cam battery pack, like the Cellink NEO or the BlackboxMyCar PowerCell 8 battery packs.
The fuse panel on this 2022 Subaru Outback is right under the instrument panel on the driver's side.
Thinkware's hardwire kit is a 3-wire cable, one for each: constant power, ignition-based, and ground. This allows the dash cam to detect when the ignition has been turned so it can switch to parking surveillance mode for impact and motion detection. Use the circuit testing in the Essential Install Kit to help you find the suitable fuse slots to use.
Tucking the cable from the headliner to the fuse panel
Use the trim removal too to pull back the headliner trim gently to tuck in the cables.
Plug in the power cable and the rear camera connecting cable (if you are installing a rear camera as well). There is some room near the top headliner to hide the cables - use the included prying tool to pull back the trim gently to tuck in the cables.
Because the fuse panel is located on the driver's side in this Subaru, we guided the power cable along the headliner and down the A-pillar on the driver's side. Popping out the A-pillar in the vehicle should be easy, but watch for the airbag under it. You can refer to your owner's manual for how to remove the pillar and trunk trims.
Running the rear camera connecting cable to the rear of the vehicle
Don't just run the cable under the rubber seal. Take the time to remove the B pillar cover or use a pry tool to carefully guide the cables under the trim.
Again, don't just run the cable under the rubber seal because it will create a little gap that might prevent the door from sealing properly - you will get wind noise or worse, water can seep into the car. Take your time to guide the cable under the trim - remove the B pillar covers and use the pry tool to carefully tuck the cable underneath the panel covers.
Look for the hoses that connect the chassis to the liftgate. Use a long zip tie to run the rear connecting cable through it for a clean installation.
Mounting the rear camera in a vehicle with a rear liftgate does require a few extra steps, and the best way to run the cable is to go through the hoses between the chassis and liftgate. Typically, there are 1 or 2 hoses that connect to the liftgate, and it's best to give them a squeeze to check which one has more wiggle room before attempting to run the wire. You can also use a long zip tie, a coat hanger, or any variation of a long wire to guide the front-to-rear cable through the headliner and the rear hatch grommet before connecting to the rear camera.
If there is any trim on the liftgate, it's best to remove them to hide the rear camera cable under it.
And there you have it, a Thinkware U1000 2-Channel dash cam installed in a 2022 Subaru Outback Wilderness. The U1000 rear camera is also very sleek and compact, small enough not to interfere with your visibility out the rear of the vehicle. And from the outside, looking in, it's virtually invisible.
Can the Subaru Eyesight be used as a dash cam for accidents?
While the Subaru Eyesight can be used as a dash cam, it is not the best solution. We strongly recommend getting a dedicated dash cam for the best protection.
The Subaru Eyesight can be used as a dash cam for accidents but isn't anywhere close to being a complete solution. Subaru Eyesight, a collision-avoidance safety system, was never intended to be dash cams. The cameras can record about 22 seconds of footage if your vehicle is involved in a collision. While it's better than no footage at all, the problem is you won't be able to re-watch the footage on your phone or download it to your computer.
Imagine you get into a fender bender, and you want to review the footage. You will need to contact Subaru and hope they have the specific footage available for you.
For a few extra dollars, you can get a dedicated dash cam to record the road and protect your vehicle, and you will be able to replay your footage anytime you want: on the phone, on the dash cam or on your computer.
Best Dash Cam for a Subaru with Eyesight: Thinkware & BlackVue
Try to avoid dash cams that use a hanging mount, as they will take up more space and potentially get in the way of the Eyesight sensors. A small wedge-shaped or a cylindrical tube-shaped dash cam with a sticky adhesive mount that attaches right against your windshield is the best.
We recommend the Thinkware U1000 dual channel dash cam for a Subaru with the Eyesight system. It offers the best features in the smallest form factor.
Voted Best Dash Cam of the Year, the Thinkware U1000 4K 2-Channel is a front and rear dashcam system that offers clear 4K video quality with super night vision 2.0 for clear video day and night. You can also take advantage of the safety camera alert, speed camera alert, and other driver assistance features, as well as the Thinkware Cloud features, thanks to the built-in GPS tracking module and built-in wi-fi.
The U1000 2-Channel dashcam comes with a Thinkware hardwiring kit, a CPL filter, and a microSD memory card. We recommend applying the CPL filter onto the front camera lens and inserting the microSD card into the front camera before mounting it onto the windshield.
Another dash cam we recommend is the BlackVue DR900X Plus, which is another feature-packed 4K UHD dash cam with a small form factor.