HD720P vs. F500HD (2mm vs. 7mm lens)





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Published on Mar 20, 2010

The wider angle lens (first video) is from the HD720P camera. The zoomed-in look is from the F500HD.

The F500HD records at 1920x1080 where the other records 1280x720. Both have their strengths.

HD720P was purchased here:


F500HD was purchased here:


Some more details:

Both cameras:

1) Auto start when power is applied
2) Require 5VDC - but are supplied with 12V to 5V adapters (ciggy to usb)
3) Will recycle oldest video segment when SD is full
4) Segments can be set anywhere from 2m to 15min
5) There is about a 3 second gap as the first segment finishes, and the next segment begins recording
6) Microphones pick up all conversations in the vehicle clearly
7) Recordings are .mov and use the MPEG4 (H264) video format
8) Audio is AAC
9) Internal batteries allow camera to gracefully finish writing the current file (and shut down) once external power has been removed

F500HD specs and observations

1) Records 1920x1080
2) 7mm fixed (internal lens)
3) Approximately 800MB for each 15 minute segment
4) Mounts vertically taking up more room than the HD720P (aka DVR-007)
5) Can be mounted upside down (firmware allows video/menus to be flipped)
6) LCD can be turned off, but it will power back on with next power cycle
7) Mounting is tricky as the standard clip-on bracket does not isolate road vibration very well
8) Clarity of video is exceptional and license plates can be read from several car lengths away
9) SD card is loaded from the top/bottom - right next to the tripod mounting screw (all though that screw is not used with the standard mount) - making it difficult to access the card.
10) Very good night time vision

HD720P (aka DVR-007)

1) Records 1280x720
2) 2mm fixed lens (it is removable with some force and extreme caution)
3) Approximately 500mb per 15 min segment
4) Mounts horizontally with a flip-down monitor, much smaller footprint and obstruction than F500HD
5) LCD power turns off if screen is flipped up/closed, BUT if it's closed when power is applied, it will stay on.
6) A tri-pod mount on the top of the camera is very effective - access to the SD is 180° from the lens, and accessible w/o moving camera
7) Clarity is far better than standard-definition (i.e. 720x480 or 640x480) but license plates and finer detail is lost due to the wider angle
8) Night recordings are not very good - only seeing what illuminated by headlights. This may be a function of the wider lens

Other thoughts:

I like both a lot. Build quality is nothing exceptional, but I do not think it's bad enough to cause long-term issues.

Both will power down after power has been removed. However, if the power does not stay off for more than 2 seconds, the camera does not respond to the returning power. For example, if you turn your engine off while at a drive through, but leave accessory power on, the cameras continue to record. But when you restart your engine, the power drops momentarily while the engine cranks. The cameras will recognize this as a power loss, and will initiate shut down. But, because the power returns almost immediately, and the cameras are still shutting down, they do not realize the power came back up - and they stay off. The only way around this is to remember to turn the engine and accessory power off for at least 2 seconds. Then restart - and all works as planned.

I may add more to this as questions are asked below.


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