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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First off, I know this isn't high-end equipment but I'm trying to do this on a budget. If it's junk I would have expected it to perform poorly or fail prematurely, not what happend below...

My camera and monitor finally arrived. Before installation I wanted to connect and test the equipment.

The camera (XOTECH) came with no docs or instructions. It has an RCA video out and a female M connector for power. There is a sticker marking the polarity with (-) on the outside. I soldered a pigtail to a male M connector and connected this to the battery with rubber boot insulated aligator clip jumpers. The label on the camera says DC 12V 80MA

I used the same type of jumpers to power the monitor. Both devices were powered by connecting the jumpers straight to the battery under the hood.


Soon after I connected the video cable (RCA) from the camera to the monitor, the camera's power wire got hot and the insulator began to smoke!

I rechecked my connections and everything appeared to be correct.

Ok so I ask myself what got smoked. The camera? The Monitor? Both? I brought a house dvd player outside and connected it to the monitor. One time and one time only I was able to get a distorted video image to flash for a split second. All other times it says no signal. The monitor has 2 video inputs and neither one seems to work. Everything else about the monitor appears to work fine. It has a blue screen. All the menus work and the picture isn't "fried looking". I also tried a playstation and one of those handheld cheapo Pac-Man games.

I know the voltage is right and the polarity is too. Is the amperage wrong?

I'm really at a loss here tryng to figure out what smoked what and if any of this equipment is still any good.

Update:

I think I had the polarity wrong on the camera power because I ASSUMED something instead of using my meter. I sacrifice an ac adaptor to make one of my test power cords. When I stripped the wire there was an insulated conductor inside and an uninsulated one. My assumption was that the uninsulated one went to the "ring" and the insulated one was for the "tip" (this is not a phono tip and ting connector I'm just using those terms here). I was wrong. The insulated wire is actually the outside conductor in the M connector.


So for those that have some experience with cameras...

Does reveresed polarity commonly result in a smoked camera?

My monitor is NTSC/PAL and automatically detects this. Was using "house" equiment a good way to troubleshoot the monitor or is there some other method I can use to find out if the monitor's video-in circuit is fried?
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You say you wired directly to your battery? Is there an inline fuse? If not, did you go through the fuse box before connecting to the battery? Although the system is a 12VDC system, a fuse acts as a resistor (well, actually a fuse IS a resistor, with a high limit amperage beore blowing at that specified amperage), my guess is if you did not have any fuses on the system, then you were drawing too much amperage from connecting directly from the battery instead of allowing the fuse to control the current flow...
Hope this helps a little, let me know what you find...

:blueblob:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I'm just RMAing the monitor and eating the camera I guess. I THINK having the polarity reversed on the camera smoked it. I should have checked better. Often reversed polarity just doesn't work, sometimes stuff burns up. This was one of those times. The other bad thing was the monitor itself. It came with a big honking wire harness. There was so way I could avoid running the wire out the end of the visor. I would have had to cut the harness and only feed out the few wires I wanted to use. That would have voided any warranty it had. I just need a better location for a monitor. Wish I could have gotten some answers about troubleshooting the monitor but it doesn't matter now. Thanks for the few that tried to help.
 

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Titan-ization said:
You say you wired directly to your battery? Is there an inline fuse? If not, did you go through the fuse box before connecting to the battery? Although the system is a 12VDC system, a fuse acts as a resistor (well, actually a fuse IS a resistor, with a high limit amperage beore blowing at that specified amperage), my guess is if you did not have any fuses on the system, then you were drawing too much amperage from connecting directly from the battery instead of allowing the fuse to control the current flow...
Hope this helps a little, let me know what you find...

:blueblob:
Sorry, but incorrect analysis there. A fuse protects from too much current being drawn, because of a problem elsewhere in the circuit. It does not act as part of the circuit, in determining the current drawn or voltage supplied per se, and has negligable affect on a circuit.

Simply connecting directly to the battery did not and will not cause excess current flow. Problem was that the connector was wired backwards, putting power to the ground of the camera as he later detemined. A fuse would have protected the system. Connector polarity can be tricky sometimes, so much variety exist in the market.

Lesson learned, fortunetly, it was just a camera, and not an important component of the Titan itself. Sorry to hear of the loss though.:crying:
 
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