Timm's E63 and E64 Fitting a WiFi Dash Cam
A method that allows remote control and file downloading
Today I am installing a Yi 2.7k Ultra Dash Cam - but I’m not going with the dangly-wires and a plug poked in the cigarette lighter socket, no we are going advanced here with the additional features of: The camera will stay live for 8 minutes after the car is locked The video files can be remotely viewed and downloaded if within WiFi range No trailing wires No trim removal required No need to plug into the cigarette lighter socket Remote camera activation if within key remote range Will not discharge the car batteries The 6-Series, like all BMW’s, has a timed 12V supply that is used for various systems, this becomes active when the car is unlocked and remains live until the car has been switched off for 8 minutes (earlier models had a 16 minute timer). This is handy if you have a WiFi camera connected to that supply as it means you can download video’s and stills from the comfort of your home (as long as you are within WiFi range). A handy place to find this supply is within the interior light assembly - so we are going to connect to that. Below is a YouTube video of the process and below that, the full routine:
That’s the USB lead shortened - now we need to prepare the 12V/5V converter:
That’s all the preparation done, time to stick it back in the car. Fortunately, getting the USB lead to the camera position is helped by the fact that the headliner can be pushed away from the windscreen enough to get the connector through. So, offer up the interior light and re-connect the three looms. The picture below is taken through the interior light aperture - I’m pushing down on the headliner showing that enough of a gap can be made to get the USB connector through
With the USB lead poked above the headlining refit the interior light by slotting in the front and pushing the back and sides into place - it makes some alarming cracking noises as it goes in but this is quite normal
Temporarily fit the camera to the windscreen using the suction mount to make sure the picture is not obstructed and the position suits you
Remove the interior light by pulling downwards at the back Slide the Yi trim-tool in-between the connector pairs to release the three looms Here are the points on the underside of the interior light we need Shorten the USB lead to around 10”. Prepare the cable ends using a sharp knife, tin the wire ends Solder the shortened lead together, cover the joints with 2.5mm heatshrink. Sleeve with 3.5mm heatshrink Tweak the ring off the end of the converter Use a pair of side-cutters to separate the case halves Looks a bit of a mess, but don’t panic, it’s all good! Snip off the spring contact and the side contact wire with the side-cutters. The PCB has a ground-plane that makes de-soldering these connections difficult Solder a 6” length of the USB lead offcut to the pads as shown Plug the shortened USB lead in Stretch a 4” long length of self-amalgamating tape to 6” and wrap the converter, leads and connector That’s that fella sorted Apply a couple of strips of double-sided tape here And stick the converter in position
Wire the converter to the interior light as shown below:
And here’s how to do it:
Micro USB to camera 12V/5V Converter Join in USB cable
And here is what we are aiming to achieve, 12V/5V USB adaptor fitted to the interior light and neat, short wiring
That’s about it - it looks much more complicated here than it is to do in real life. My dash cam has already recorded some dodgy driving - and - managed to record lightening during a thunderstorm with the camera being activated by the key remote! The best review of this camera is by Techmoan here Time for a cup of tea!
Remote file downloading and control With the camera fitted and working
Download a short video and check that the picture is not obstructed and the quality is acceptable. Any distortion could be due to grease on the lens - only use a lint-free cloth for cleaning The 1920X1080 setting is a good compromise between file sizes (download time) and resolution If you are within key-remote range you are probably in WiFi range - lock or unlock the car with the remote and this will power the camera Select the SD Card page and should have access to the video files that were recorded Set Gsensor to HIGH or it will trigger an emergency recording on small potholes
Go for a good blast to check everything works as it should (following is from my 840ci but all much the same on the E63/E64)
Here’s the full kit that is supplied with the Yi 2.7k Dashcam
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