Updated on January 20, 2023
There are many reasons to buy the Black Box B40 A118. One of them being the splendid combination of Novatek NT96650 chipset and Aptina AR0330 lens. It has a 3M CMOS sensor beating at its heart. It also has a 1.5” HD LCD screen to review what the camera is recording. Apart from that, it has almost all the standard features that most leading in-car cameras have these days. The only feature that it’s lacking is a GPS feed. Let’s take a closer look at this particular unit and find out if it’s a good match for your requirements.
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The lens of the Black Box B40 A118 has an ultra-wide angle field of view coverage of 170 degrees, which is almost in the same category as a fish-eye lens with its expanded reach. The wide-angle lens compares to the likes of the hugely popular Rexing V1, and the slightly more expensive WheelWitness Hd Pro, all of which is 170 degrees but different price ranges. The wide angle of view ensures that almost all of the view through the dashboard is taken in full-HD quality. The lens itself is a 6-Glass composition making this a stand-out device among its mid-priced rivals.
Although it’s capable of 1080p at 30 fps and 720p at 60 fps, the latter is not recommended. 720p HD at 60 fps allows you to playback at half the speed (30 fps) for a slow-motion effect. However, Full HD video captures greater detail. Greater quality ensures that a video picks up intricate details such as the license plate of a vehicle, the location where the video was shot and even a clear image of a face.
Additionally, among the many other uses of a dashboard camera, it gives the ability to capture beautiful footage of the scenery from your latest road trip. The video is compressed in H.264 format, and also has a built-in microphone for audio while the video is being recorded. This is a common feature that some people love and others loathe, but it can be deactivated if you’re of the latter.
This device supports loop recording, which means the continuous saving of clips into pre-selected minutes. Once the memory card (not supplied) is exhausted, the built-in DVR will overwrite older saved files (which are not write-protected) and then begin to save fresh videos.
Dimensions And Weight
The B40 A118 Stealth is a small compact unit in the shape of a wedge for the ideal placement on a windshield. It measures 3 x 2 x 2” and weighs a little more than 2 ounces. This makes it only marginally larger than the Mini 0806, and the Garmin 45 Dash Cam, which are both currently among the smallest on the market.
The motion detector is an included great feature to have, even if you don’t always use it. The built-in 3.7V 300mAh battery on this unit lasts between 5-10 minutes without a power source. Motion detector, or as popularly known as parking mode, can be looked at in two distinctly different purviews here. You could say that it causes a strain on the car battery, and thus need a dedicated power source for use, which makes it kind of a hassle in the long run. Alternatively, you could say that it acts as an extremely useful feature that basically picks up any foul play such as a newbie driver bumping onto your car while parking alongside or some mischievous individual scratching your car on purpose, and saves it on the memory card.
Memory Lock Gravity Sensing
Gravity lock is a feature that every one of our top-rated dash camera reviews has, including this one. Gravity lock is a security feature that immediately locks the video that is being recorded at the moment of an impact. This prevents it from being accidentally overwritten during standard loop recording. Secondly, this video can be used in the event of making a claim or to assist law enforcement officers in the event of a crash. Sudden changes in gravity, such as when a vehicle is caught in an accident or when it comes to a sudden stop from being driven at speed is a cue for this system to get activated. It also gets activated when you make rapid acceleration (such as when your car is hit from behind), or a sudden sharp cornering is made. Different levels of sensitivity can be selected though. A medium setting is preferred to ensure that the camera does not record and lock on each bump and each turn.
Resistance To Heat
The Black Box B40 A118 is capable of withstanding heat up to 140˚F. This is of critical importance, especially in the summer months when you park your car under the sun.
Wide Dynamic Range
This particular in-car camera has extremely impressive low-light shooting capabilities due to its WDR technology, which is akin to the HDR or High Dynamic Range technology that is available on popular DSLR’s. WDR essentially works by providing a greater range in light levels that can be picked up by the camera. The larger the dynamic range better it is for the image / still that you capture.
The conveniently shaped wedge dash cam comes with an adhesive mounting system. This ensures that the device can be installed at any vantage point quite easily. Plus the camera angle can be adjusted using the adjustment knob at the side of the lens once it has been affixed to the interior of the windshield.
It comes with all the cords and cables for a quick and easy installation. There’s an in-car charging cable that draws power from the cigarette lighter. Brackets and adhesive mounts are also provided. All you need is a MicroSD card to get started (32 GB max supported). Unlike some others on the market, such as the Rexing S300, which comes with a MicroSD card, there is none provided with this model.
The device can also take JPEG stills of resolution 5 megapixels if required. 5 megapixels seems to be a popular figure for devices in this range and is more than enough suffice.
This is an amazing mid-range device which has become very popular with people searching for an affordable dashcam. With all the bells and whistles of something twice its price, the actual value is immense; the only thing it lacks is a GPS feed, but not everyone will utilize this feature and is often just a bonus for many. Nonetheless, it is a small price to pay for absolute peace of mind when you drive your vehicle out of the parking lot and onto the busy streets beyond.
Ash loves cars and gadgets. He is a Business IT graduate who loves spending time with his family and friends.