The Quad processor sounds nice, but what happens if I only want 2 or 3 cameras? Also, can I watch the cameras on my home TV?
The Quad processor is a very versatile unit allowing any combination of cameras to be attached. If you only need 3 cameras, the 4th input will show blank on the 4 camera split screen. In auto rotate mode, the input without a camera will be ignored in rotation. The quad may be programmed to display each camera for different durations from 1 to 99 seconds before switching. You also may display the quad split picture in rotation if you like. You can also adjust each cameras brightness and contrast etc... individually for situations where you have a combination of indoor and outdoor cameras; although there is little need as the cameras will adjust very well to different lighting conditions.
Yes! You can output the display to your home TV or VCR. The quad will supply power to the cameras and/or DM Wireless receivers, and there are standard RCA jacks on the back for output to a VCR or TV. You may also output the quad signal to a single transmitter for viewing up to 4 cameras on your home TV on one receiver. This requires programming the quad in your house where you can see the display, then simply move it out to barn or other building. It will remember your setting. If you want the quad to alternate cameras, you will only have to press the auto button once it is in place.
What happens when the lens gets lots of dust on it?
The lens is made of the same materials as glasses, and is very easy to wipe clean with a cloth (the corner of a shirt works nicely for this). We have noticed that the lens has to get VERY dirty to even make the image fuzzy on the monitor. The reason for this is twofold. 1) The camera is a .01 LUX camera, which means that it will compensate for lighting conditions down to almost zero light. So, as the lens becomes dirtier, the camera will compensate accordingly. 2) The area that the camera lens needs to be free of debris is very small and in the center. Debris and dust tends to gather around the edge of the camera first, so this also results in the image remaining clear for a longer period of time. An example: the camera was used to look back at the nozzles of a sprayer spraying a sticky substance. After 8 hours, the image was unaffected even though when you went and physically looked at the camera, you couldn't even tell by looking at the lens what was behind it.
Regular LCD monitors seem to be cheaper than LCD TVs. Why don't you use the less expensive monitors without TV tuners?
How very observant of you. You do your homework. The use of the TFT monitors is something that is actually very important to us. We know that it adds a bit of cost to the system, but the benefits far outweigh the difference in cost. The TFT monitor has a much broader field of view. When you stand off to the side or view the monitor from the bottom up, you can view a perfectly clear image for close to an 80 degree angle. A STN LCD monitor ("regular") only allows for about a 20 degree view. So, you can only get off to the side a small amount before the image becomes invisible. Also, the TFT technology has a much better endurance to bright/direct sun.
When the systems break down, what is the most common problem?
Our warranty return rates are quite low (.05% on cameras). The most common problem that we have experienced in the past was actually not a warranty issue, but a user issue with the camera tail becoming damaged from use. In response to this problem, the cameras now feature a removable camera tail so the user can simply purchase a replacement in the event of damage.
What is the warranty like?
We have recently decided to extend the warranty on the units to 2 years for the monitor and 3 years for the camera. Originally, when we first introduced the product line in 2002, we had a 1 year warranty on the cameras and 3 months on the monitors, but felt very confident in the quality of our product and wanted to extend that confidence to the customers. We understand that farm equipment can sit for months unused, so we wanted to make sure that an entire season would be covered under our warranty.
Can you have more than two cameras on one monitor?
Yes you can. With the addition of our Quad, you can view up to 4 cameras at once on the same screen.
What do you use for power when you are using the wireless transmitters?
The wireless transmitters come in pairs; a sending unit and a receiving unit. Each unit comes with an AC adaptor, and the pair comes with one 12v hardwire adaptor. The reason for only one hardwire adaptor is that when you hook the receiver up to the monitor, it receives it's power from the monitor. So, you would only theoretically need to power the sending unit and the camera (they hook together so they only require one power source for the both of them) with either the hardwire adaptor or the AC adaptor. We have included the AC adaptor for the receiving unit in the event you would like to hook the receiver directly to a standard television set. (A pair of AV cables are also included with the DM Wireless).
Can the DM Wireless be used in a vehicle?
YES, the DM Wireless is able to be used on a vehicle. We recommend using our 5db antenna magnetic base antenna.
How stable is the image on a moving piece of equipment? Will I be able to see anything worthwhile when moving down a rough road or in the field?
The image is amazingly stable. Even on the roughest road, the image you see appears steady. We have road tested this camera system on some of the roughest roads we could find. We even did some things that were possibly stupid in an attempt to knock the camera loose from the hood of an old 4x4 pickup. The camera stayed in place and the image it produced was clear and sharp. Other tests were done on machines with high movement.
Can I use my Camera system for underwater viewing?
Of course you can, the camera is 100% waterproof and can be submerged in the water over 300 feet. Although, keep in mind that the monitor is NOT. Never get the monitor wet. Also, if you are going to throw your camera in the water, make sure that all twist lock connectors are secure and will not come apart. We also recommend the application of some sort of dielectric compound to the connector contacts to help prevent corrosion. You may want to even secure the cable connectors with electrical tape or some other means of safety. Dakota Micro does not warrantee the cameras against loss in this situation. The warranty does provide for damage in case the camera takes in water for a period of three years.
How important is Line of Site with the Wireless System? I have a building 200 feet away that I would like to monitor. Both buildings are constructed of wood. Do I need any external antennas?
You will probably not have a problem within 200 feet using the DM Wireless with the standard antennas. The signal is able to penetrate walls to a certain degree depending on the distance and other local factors such as interference, electrical lines, trees and in some cases weather. You should give it a try without any external antennas. If possible, locate the transmitter in a window to reduce the amount of signal loss. If all else fails, you should be able to achieve good results using the 5dbi magnetic mount antenna.