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Holiday Mall Parking Survival - Brilliant Tip from our CEO

Holiday Mall Parking Survival - Brilliant Tip from our CEO

The busiest shopping season of the year is quickly approaching. Many retailers are already fully decked out in preparation for the many shoppers flocking to the mall this shopping season. Unfortunately, the festive spirit doesn’t always extend into the parking lot. You may laugh about it or even sing about it, but you can’t deny that the mall parking lot can make even the friendliest, minivan-driving soccer mom turn into a raging monster. Ever wonder where all those mysterious scratches and dents on your car came from? Hit-and-runs, vandalism and even thefts can sure put a damper on holiday shopping.

You could just sign up for Amazon Prime and avoid the mall altogether. But there are things that e-commerce will never be able to replicate - the music, the lights, and the Santa photos! With that said, our CEO has one brilliant tip for you all: Parking Mode.

What is Dash Cam Parking Mode?

Parking mode is a fancy word for any recording done while the engine is off and your car is parked. Most dash cams come with a parking mode option, even the lower end ones. While most parking mode recording kicks in within seconds of ignition-off, the parking mode features lineup differs greatly from camera to camera.

Alex, our CEO, has recently tested the Thinkware U1000 2-Channel with the RADAR module and a Cellink NEO battery pack in his car. Let's see what he has to say.

Questions? We love questions!

What’s so great about the U1000’s parking mode?

The Thinkware U1000 2-Channel is a great dash cam not only because it is the highest resolution dash cam system on the market (4K UHD video recording from the front camera and 2K recording from the rear camera), but it is the only true 4K dash cam that comes with radar motion detection via the optional radar module accessory.

The optional radar module is designed to enhance the U1000's Energy Saving Mode with buffered recording, something that was an “either or” previously.

In other words, instead of relying on the dash cam’s own built-in motion detectors, you will be using the RADAR module during Energy Saving Mode. This not only allows your dash cam to stay “asleep” longer (which conserves energy, giving you a true energy-saving performance), but you’re beefing up your dash cam’s motion detection with the RADAR’s ultra-high frequency radar motion detection technology.

Pair that with the U1000's capability to send a notification and the video footage straight to your smartphone via Thinkware Cloud, all you need is the Thinkware mobile app and a mobile WiFi hotspot in your car and you just got yourself the strongest parking surveillance dash cam setup available on the market.

In case you're wondering, you can create your own mobile hotspot virtually anywhere with a mobile router or a smartphone with a built-in mobile hotspot function.

Does RADAR work on other Thinkware dash cams?

The RADAR module is a U1000-specific add-on accessory so it will not work with other Thinkware dash cams. Specifically, to enable RADAR motion detection you will first need to enable the Energy Saving Parking Mode on the U1000 dash cam.

If you currently have the Q800PRO or the F800 Pro, upgrading to the U1000 is pretty straightforward - you can reuse your existing hardwire setup. Black Friday and Cyber Monday are just around the corner, which means great deals on the U1000 are on the way!

Any non-Thinkware dash cams with good parking mode features?

Thinkware is well-known for its great parking mode offerings, but if you’re not the biggest fan of Thinkware dash cams, another great parking mode brand is BlackVue. In fact, the BlackboxMyCar company car uses the BlackVue DR900S-2CH.

The DR900S-2CH is another dual channel system that offers great video quality: 4K UHD from the front and Full HD from the rear camera. In terms of parking mode capabilities, the DR900S comes with two different parking mode options: the default motion and impact detection using the dash cam's built-in motion sensors and accelerometer (or G-sensor), as well as the time-lapse mode.

And just like the Thinkware dash cams, you can be alerted instantly of anything that happens in parking mode, thanks to BlackVue's Over-the-Cloud service.

Is an external battery pack a must for parking mode?

Absolutely not! The number one requirement for using parking mode is a steady power supply. If you are using the cigarette lighter socket in your car to power the dash cam while you drive, then you will need to find an alternative power source when the vehicle is powered down.

Hardwire dash cam to the car battery

This option will allow you to bypass the cigarette lighter socket and all other switches along the way and tap right into the car’s battery. The common concern about this option is battery over-drainage. Thinkware dash cams have a built-in voltage cutoff protection to prevent car battery discharge but overtime, it will cause wear and tear on the car battery, so we strongly recommend the external battery pack.

Read more about installing a dash cam with a hardwiring kit or better yet, watch it on video:

External battery pack

With this option, you are connect the dash cam to the external battery pack. It will draw power from the battery pack for parking mode coverage. There are two different ways to charge an external battery pack: hardwire or cigarette lighter socket. For Thinkware dash cams, we recommend the Cellink NEO battery.

Learn more about dash cam battery packs

The ultimate parking mode dash cam setup for a Black Friday camp-out?

Hands down, Thinkware U1000 2-Channel Dash Cam  + RADAR module + Cellink NEO battery + 128GB SD card. With this setup, you get Parking Mode coverage for up to 170 hours (7 days). Basically, you can shop until you drop, literally. This is also a great setup to have if you need to park your car when going away this Holiday season.

A BlackVue-fan? Try this: BlackVue DR900S-2CH Dash Cam + BlackVue B-124X Battery Pack + BlackVue MicroSD Card. Not the same extended parking mode, but definitely highly recommended if you like to keep it BlackVue-only.

Until next time, Happy Holiday Shopping and most of all, Happy Holiday Parking!

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[Signature Bundle] BlackVue DR900S-2CH + BlackVue B-124X Review
Hi Bob, thanks for reviewing! I believe you're referring to Katrina and Mark, and we'll definitely pass the compliments over to her :) Glad to hear you got all the help you needed, and it's awesome to hear that everything worked out with your install! Thanks for shopping with us.
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Hi Christian, thanks for leaving a review. You did indeed make a great choice! You can check it live when you're not in the car by connecting the BlackVue dash cam to the Cloud. You'll need a mobile hotspot to achieve this, but it's entirely possible! Ask us if you need help :)
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VIOFO A129 : High Functionality at a Good Price Point
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Cellink New Extended Battery Pack
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Fast shipping, easy install, great HD dashcam
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VIOFO A129 from BlackBoxMyCar meets expectations
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Nice dashcam for the money
Hi Mike, thank you for sharing your honest review. We're glad to hear that you've found a dash cam that's right for your vehicles, and you found them with us at BlackboxMyCar. We do love it when customers share their footage with us, so we'd love to see additional feedback from you once you've had more chances to play with your VIOFO. That said, we do want to clarify one thing regarding the battery pack, the amount of time that it takes to charge will be dependent on your vehicle's battery. For some of our customers, as long as they're driving minimum 30 mins a day, then it will be enough for them to recharge. It's especially important for customers during this time as many of them are working from home so having parking mode on for an extended period of time is important. That said, thank you for shopping at BlackboxMyCar. Do let us know if you have any questions in the future.
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