Tidying my office a few days ago, I came across some car reversing monitors that I used to use as cheap Pi displays for use in the chase car, to show the distance and direction to the payload; these days I use the official Pi touchscreen as it’s a lot better for that application. One of the monitors is a flip-up model, and I wondered how much space there was inside. I use the Pi Zero a lot for balloon trackers, as it’s small and light compared to other Pi models, but perhaps one could fit one inside the base to make a smart dashcam – one that can stream my balloon chases to Youtube as well as record to SD.
About the same time, Michael Horne (author of the excellent Pi Pod blog), posted a picture of a similar-looking model on Twitter, asking how to power it from 5V. That’s the opposite of what I wanted to do (power the Pi Zero from the 5V rail inside the monitor) but I felt I might be able to help so I opened up my unit to find where the 5V could be tapped. As it turned out, Michael’s unit had a very different PCB to mine, but the seed was sewn so I decided to start building my dashcam.
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