Dash Cam for Model X?

Dash Cam for Model X?

I am looking into getting a dash cam for my model X.
Has anybody done it? Any suggestions or recommendations?

vperl | 3 mai 2016

Dual system front and back, swivel manually .

lilbean | 3 mai 2016

I like this one but haven't worked up the guts to install it.

eric.zucker | 4 mai 2016

I got the BlackVue 650. Nice product, will tell you more when it's installed.
If you want to record parking incidents, it must be wired into a permanent 12V supply. Else it only works when the car is powered up.

Ideally you should connect it to a wifi network to use all its features. The car's LTE isn't a hotspot though.
Without this you only record on a memory card in the camera.

What's your use case? Have proof in case of driving accident? No problem. Parking incident? Maybe. Theft prevention? Doubt it very much.

lilbean | 4 mai 2016

A thief was arrested thanks to the black vue camera.

vperl | 4 mai 2016

Read about installation of this brand in a MS, but the X is different.

Any MX installations

Dcp9142 | 5 mai 2016

Ideally, dash am function should be built in using the existing front and rear cameras.

davediep | 5 mai 2016


I like the BlackVue 650 as well.
My main purpose:
1) Have proof in case of driving accident
2) Parking incident

Please post with pictures after your installation as well as your recommendation of the installer.
Thank you for sharing!

darlin | 5 mai 2016

I will be getting one with a battery. Not the 12v version. I like what I have seen of the MiVues with batteries. And of course, front and back cameras.

ian | 5 mai 2016

Some info in this thread over at TMC...

I'm thinking about getting the blackvue 650 as well. It's pretty reasonable on Amazon right now.

ian | 5 mai 2016
vperl | 6 mai 2016

Ok, anyone else has ideas, with battery or wired, and if wired a legitimate safe place to obtain the power.

You can always use 12volt to charge while driving.

eric.zucker | 7 mai 2016

You can use a USB powered dash cam, and a USB phone battery which you charge off the 12V plug.
HP makes a F310 dash cam that would work. It's not aesthetic at all though.

Alternatively I'm considering a 3S LiPo cell and car charger to feed my blackvue when the car is off. Similar units exist as CCTV camera backup power. Need to figure out how much power it draws to size the battery.

Gary an Rachel | 7 mai 2016

3s Lipo, hmm. The size is not going to be as important as not daining the battery flat. As you know that will brick that Lipo. They have protection systems in the hobby model airplane sites that will protect your battery from dropping below the minimum safe voltage to save batteries. That should be first item on that Lipo list of things to get. Please post how your setup works for you. Thx

Gary an Rachel | 7 mai 2016 this page may help find a board that will help save batteries.

ksides | 7 mai 2016

An alternative to a dedicated car camera is to buy a good cell phone mount for your dashboard or windshield for about $12, and use a cell phone car camera app such as "CarCam" which displays (and records) your speed along with the view out your windshield.

eric.zucker | 7 mai 2016

I would not leave a cell phone visible in my car.

I'd like to charge my dash cam battery when I charge the car, does anyone know if the 12V outlets are powered when the car is charging?

@GaryAnRachel: bricking a LiPo is less bothersome than seeing it burst in flames... It needs good charge control, temperature management and deep discharge protection. May cost more than the dash cam!

elguapo | 8 mai 2016

I'd like a dashcam, but don't want anyone, except Tesla, touching the electronics or power on the car.

Early days with he S I remember someone on the forum getting dinged by TM when their very reputable installer caused a problem with the S after a dashcam install.

elguapo | 8 mai 2016

Sorry, I should clarify. By "ding", I meant the person had a subsequent issue with their 12V and TM said it was the installer's fault so the owner had to cover it from their own pocket. I don't want to take that risk.

vperl | 8 mai 2016

Not good

PixelatedEngineer | 8 mai 2016

Here's the BlackVue DR650GW that just arrived.
The power cable is 16' long and the video cable is 20' long.
There are 8 adhesive-backed cable clips, two adhesive pads and a micro SD to USB adapter on a little lanyard. This unit came with a 32GB SD card already installed in the front camera.

davediep | 10 mai 2016


Please let us know how the installation goes. Thank you!

lilbean | 10 mai 2016

I wish we could just record with the onboard cameras already in the car.

davediep | 10 mai 2016

That would be ideal!

I actually gave that same feedback to a Tesla representative a few weeks ago during the "Owner Symposium" at Tesla Fremont.

vperl | 11 mai 2016

A true option from Tesla could include front & rear dash cams with ability to download to home system.

Maybe just preset locations to be able to easily plug in power. Install cams, then plug into prepositioned power.

If unused, not a problem. | 11 mai 2016

The front autopilot camera would make an awful dashcam. Limited field of view, fairly low resolution and for reasons unknown, they use a 36 frames/sec rate. Of course there is also not enough memory to store much video either - perhaps 30 minutes or so.

For dashcam wiring suggestions (Model S and X):

vperl | 12 mai 2016


vperl | 12 mai 2016

What is best installation of power to cams | 13 mai 2016

@vperl - Depends on if you want 24/7 power or only when the car is on. Also depends on how much work you want to do, and which vehicle you have, and age of vehicle (some options are not available on some Model S versions). My article above covers 5 different methods and reasons why one may be better than another (or not possible).

As a quick summary of what I recommend - if you have a Model S with power above the mirror - use that. Next for all cars is running the dashcam from the the ODBII port power.

vperl | 13 mai 2016


PixelatedEngineer | 13 mai 2016

Stopped by the SC and asked where the headliner fasteners were. Wouldn't tell me. Wouldn't show me one. "We aren't allowed to help with after market mods in any way." I think the organization is just too new... Growing faster than they can add common sense.
On the bright side they pointed me to the site where I can subscribe to the service manual. About $30 for an hour, $100 for a day, $400 for a month, $3K for a year. Maybe I'll brew a tank of coffee and spend a day browsing...

eric.zucker | 14 mai 2016

I stopped by the service center and asked if they would install the dash cam for me. Totally out of the question, they only are allowed to install original Tesla approved parts.

It's a question of accountability - if the 3rd party device malfunctions and damages the car, who pays for the damage?

Tesla also has enough to do prepping and delivering new cars, no time for extra work. OK by me.

PixelatedEngineer | 14 mai 2016

@eric, I totally agree. I was just asking them to point to where the fasteners are in my headliner. I also asked if they could show me a fastener. I can't imagine what accountability could be assigned to Tesla as a result of these disclosures. I just think the Tesla organization hasn't yet figured out the legal difference between installing equipment and showing me a drawing of a part of my car.
Eventually we'll see Haynes and Chilton manuals and life will get easier for us hackers.
I wonder who will rise as the software magazine that shows us how to hack our operating systems and install custom apps! | 14 mai 2016

Like any car manufacturer, if you (or your installer) break something, it's not covered under warranty. That said, Tesla has been exceptionally accommodating with a many modifications I've made to my car (a model S right now). I design changes so Tesla can get to where they might need to go. This includes connectors and in some cases labels to explain how to remove something that might be in the way and is not obvious how to remove. If you are reasonable with your modifications, Tesla will work with you. Changes do not invalate the warranty unless you actually caused some issue, and of course, they are not going to repair something you added.

For a list of modifications (some of which apply to the Model X as well) with my step-by-step instructions and photos:

vperl | 15 mai 2016

Good information

John | 16 mai 2016

Any recommendations for blackview installation in a Model X in the Denver/Boulder Colorado area? I also want to install an Escort Max 2 radar detector at the same time & I'm a bit nervous about a 3rd party installer messing with such a new and complex vehicle. Any concerns from anyone about either device interfering with autopilot?

rdainer | 18 mai 2016

Any recs for an installer in DC? Hurleys was recommended elsewhere but when I called today they quoted me more than double the price others have received on the forums. (500 instead of 200). Super annoying

nixamtesla | 3 juin 2016

Honestly, the BlackVue 650 install was not difficult at all compared to most ICE vehicles. My boyfriend installed it on both of our S & it saved him two separate occasions in an iffy car accident situation.

lilbean | 3 juin 2016

Any suggestions for an installer in Los Angeles?

davediep | 7 juin 2016

Good installer in the Bay Area, anyone?

Triggerplz | 8 juin 2016

@nixamtesla how was he able to get the wire back to the rear camera without the wire showing? Or if anyone knows please post it. Thanks

lilbean | 12 juin 2016

@triggerplz: Do you think you could run the wire alongside the wiring in the middle of the windshield above the rear view mirror?

Triggerplz | 13 juin 2016

@lilbean Im wondering if the wire can be completely hidden, if anybody has one please let me know if the wire is completely hidden

eric.zucker | 13 juin 2016

These guys did a thorough job on Model X, including dash cam installation:

it's near the end of their short video clip.

lilbean | 13 juin 2016

Thanks for posting that awesome video @eric.zucker!

dnphung | 14 juin 2016

I recently had the Blackvue 650 installed, both front and rear cameras. I had it installed in San Diego at Cutting Edge Audio. They were able to run the wires through the stock center channel across the windshield, the power line going into a fuse box near the driver's side and the rear camera cable going down the middle A Pillar for a perfect install. There are no cables visible at all except connecting into the camera itself.

I was a little bit worried when he had to remove the center channel on the windshield, however, he used painter's tape to mark where it laid so when he reinstalled using new 3M tape it was perfectly centered again. The most time consuming part was actually removing all the sticky residue after removing it for the first time. He also said all the cables was barley fitting in the channel, but it fit in the end.

Here are some pictures:

After Install:

During Install:

lilbean | 15 juin 2016

Looks great!

Triggerplz | 15 juin 2016


Kutu | 15 juin 2016

Thanks for the photos, that's a nice clean install!

elguapo | 15 juin 2016

Can you share the cost of installation? In my experience, installation has been prohibitively expensive. Like $1,500.

davediep | 15 juin 2016

Beautiful installation! Please share the cost. Thanks!