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How to Choose 7-Inch TFT LCD Car Video Rear View Monitors and Cameras

Whether you're commuting, running errands, traveling on vacation, or just backing out of your driveway, knowing exactly what's behind you is important for safety. A rear-view or back-up camera and monitor can help to protect your car, your person, your passengers, and pedestrians. Here are some tips for choosing TFT (thin-film transistor) LCD video monitors and cameras to provide a field of vision that can enhance your peace of mind behind the wheel.

What comes with a backup camera?

Some kits come with just a waterproof rear-view camera with night vision, without any type of monitor. These can be plugged into a DVD player, a monitor you purchase separately, or an existing display unit in your car. Other kits will come with both a rear-view camera and a TFT LCD monitor of some kind, while other kits will only offer a monitor without the backup camera. Some kits come with multiple cameras for larger vehicles and can even include a multiview display so you can see what the entire camera system is seeing at once. Which kit you choose will depend on your individual needs and the size of your vehicle.

How do you install the camera and monitor?

In many cases, you can install a rear view camera and 7-inch LCD monitor yourself. This depends on whether you already have a monitor of some kind installed in your car, or if you choose a monitor that simply mounts on the dash or a wireless monitor. If the monitor needs to be installed in the dash and wired into the electrical system; however, you may need professional installation. Many backup cameras simply screw onto your license plate with existing screws and take little time to install. Some cameras are also wireless and will beam the image straight to a Bluetooth wireless monitor.

What kinds of monitors are available?

There are several different types of monitors you can pair with your back-up camera. Some monitors will simply mount on your dash and can be plugged into a 12V socket in your car. Other monitors actually take the place of your rear-view mirror, turning it into a full-time monitor. Other monitors need to actually be mounted into your dash and can take the place of an existing radio, audio unit, or touch-screen device. Kits are made to fit RV trucks and buses as well as cars.

What features does the backup camera have?

While the specific features will vary from model to model, here are some common features found on back-up cameras to make them more effective:

  • Night vision.
  • Infrared LED lights that can detect whether it is night or day.
  • Waterproof and shock-proof.
  • Assist guidelines to help you judge distance effectively when backing up.
  • HD images to see what is behind you in sharp detail.
  • Remote control to adjust the camera without having to leave your vehicle.
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