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Power Options for your Dash cam!

All the dash cams on our site do come with 12V cigarette socket adapters which work on just about any vehicle. However, cigarette adapters have some obvious downsides as they take up a cigarette slot in your vehicle (many vehicles only have one or two!) and they also leave your wires at least partially exposed. Leaving the wires out can be unsightly but also can draw attention to the fact that you have a dash cam in your vehicle, potentially alerting any thieves that there might be a valuable accessory plugged in. Hardwiring might also open up the possibility for parking mode recording as most cigarette outlets in vehicles are ignition switched meaning the camera will turn off when you turn off your car. For these reasons, many of our customers like to hardwire their dash cams. We have a number of different hardwiring options for both ignition (ACC) switched power and constant power for your dash cam.

ACC Hardwiring Options

These hardwire kits are best for users who want their dash cam to run when their vehicle is on and turn off when they turn the vehicle off. If Parking Mode recording is required we recommend one of the constant power hardwire kits or a battery pack.

#1. Cigarette Socket Hardwiring Kit This is our most simple and affordable hardwiring kit and adds a cigarette socket in your vehicle, the benefit being that this tucked away rather than exposed in your center console. It will work with any cigarette adapter accessory so you can use it to power a cellphone charger, or GPS as well. We only recommend hooking this up to an acc fuse as there is no voltage detection function so it can leave your battery drained and the vehicle may not start. Add-A-Fuses are recommended as the wires are quite thick and hard to wrap around a fuse leg. We also recommend using a wire stripper to expose more wire to make a more solid connection with these kits.
#2. Mini USB Hardwiring Kit (CPUSB01)Cpusb01 If your dash cam is powered using a 5V mini USB this is an excellent choice. Compared to the cigarette socket it's a lot less wire/bulk to tuck and the wires are easier to wrap around a fuse leg. The BlackboxMyCar Mini USB Hardwiring Kit is capable of voltage detection but we find the cutoff is too low for 12V passenger vehicles (set at 11.6V) so we only recommend it for ACC hardwiring purposes. This kit is designed to work for both 12V and 24V applications. This kit will work on devices like the Street Guardian SG9665GC, Skyview G1, Skyview G6, G1W-C, and many other Chinese dash cams. As always we don't recommend constant power for non-Parking mode devices as videos get overwritten very quickly when there's no motion detection feature.

Constant Power Hardwire Kits

These hardwire kits are designed to borrow power from the car's battery when the vehicle is switched off to allow for recording even when parked. They have two cutoff functions, a timer feature and a voltage detection feature. The voltage detection feature monitors the car's battery level and cuts off power to the dash cam when it drops to that set level. The timer feature cuts off power to the dash cam when the engine has been switched off for a set amount of time. Typically these kits require three connections: a constant/battery fuse, an ignition switched/ACC fuse, and a ground.

#1. Power Magic Pro (PMP) The Power Magic Pro is our best-selling hardwiring kit and is designed to work for both 12V and 24V applications. It is often bundled with the BlackVue cameras but will work with any other cigarette powered dash cam. The green light and on/off multi booting switch are straight forward and makes it easy to choose between parking mode and acc mode. Both the PMP and multi-safer are not appropriate for charging a battery pack due to the lower amperage output. For more on the Power Magic Pro check out our article here.
#2. Moto Park Multi Safer The Multi Safer is our preferred hardwiring kit for newer luxury and large displacement vehicles as it offers the most accurate voltage detection and a more conservative 12.2V cutoff setting. The PMP in comparison only offers a 12.0V cutoff which may be too low for some applications such as German vehicles and pickup trucks with large V8 engines. If the timer setting isn't needed, the multi safer can also be tapped straight into the battery with the constant power wire only rather than going into the fuse box. For those with smaller displacement engines a 11.6V cutoff is also available but we recommend doing so at your own risk. The 12.0 and 12.2V settings are preferred. In contrast to the Power Magic Pro the light indicators and the button are not as obvious.
#3. Direct Hardwire Kits

More and more of our parking mode enabled cameras are switching to these direct hardwire kits as they make wire management and setup easier. Compared to other hardwire kits that have a female cigarette socket these are a much lower profile option. They offer the same voltage detection/timer settings but they are built into the device and settings are changed on the device rather than on a separate external module.

Another benefit to these kits is that they can switch to parking mode right away after turning off the engine because the camera is directly connected to an ignition switched fuse, whereas cigarette jack based systems use the g-sensor and typically take 5-10 minutes to switch into parking mode. The downside to these kits is that they are typically not long enough to work on vehicles with rear mounted or engine compartment mounted fuse boxes on vehicles like the Dodge Ram or newer generation BMW sedans/coupes. While the cigarette adapter power cables are longer and do reach those fuse boxes, cameras that use direct hardwire kits typically can not switch into parking mode if they are powered using a cigarette adapter.

Cellink Battery B

The Cellink Battery B is significantly different from all the other hardwiring kits mentioned and is our favourite solution for parking mode recording. It offers parking mode recording like the constant power hardwire kits but only drains power when the engine is on and does so very well as it can independently power a 2 Channel dash cam such as the BlackVue DR650GW-2CH for over 20 hours.

Cellink Battery BIt takes roughly an hour and 15 minutes to charge fully but those with shorter commutes can also charge the battery at home using our dedicated power inverter. The benefit to only charging on accessory power is that the Cellink adds no drain to your car's battery when it's off which will prolong the battery life. Batteries that run with traditional hardwiring kits like the power magic pro need to be replaced more frequently than recommended by most service departments/owner's manuals.

For those that need even more recording time, the Cellink Expansion pack doubles the capacity of the battery. Those that plan on running two separate dash cams should go with two Battery B's rather than the expansion pack as it will charge faster. To power two separate cameras one one battery pack, a cigarette splitter is available.