Tag Archives: safety camera

Road Angel Diaries – 2000 miles in…

So…I’ve done another thousand or so miles since getting my Road Angel Gem+ that I wrote about in THIS POST and THIS POST and I must say its developing into a Love Hate relationship.

One is its annoying habits is refusing to startup, which at first got me raising a ticket with their Helpdesk who advised I needed to do a reset on the device.

I figured this was an isolated incident but now know this is a regular ‘feature’ of the Road Angel Gem+, so much so that I now carry around a spare Nokia SIM Key on my car keys as the reset ritual is becoming a regular thing:

This little thing is perfect for doing a quick reset and gets used at least once a week 🙁

The other annoying thing about the Gem+ is its database accuracy, or lack of. For a £160 device that you then need to add a £69/year subscription to I would expect 95% accuracy at least but sadly this is not the case.

There are camera’s that have been around for months that it does know know about, there are road speed areas that have been around for years it mis-categorises, i.e. telling you a 30mph zone is in fact a 40mph zone so word of caution do not rely 100% on this device or you could get punished

Here’s a shot of the beanbag mount I mentioned in my last Road Angel post , I need to run the cabling inside my center console at some point but this at least saves any tell tale mounts being on display when you leave your car unattended.

Road Angel Diaries – First 1000 miles

So I’ve done the first 1000 or miles with my Road Angel Gem+ here’s some initial feedback, useful if you are looking at buying one of these units 🙂

The battery life truly sucks if the screen is on full brightness and when I say sucks it does not last the stated 2.5 hours. True you can set it to Auto Brightness but in reality the display is barely readable, the solution – run it in Hard Wired Mode (direct into cigarette lighter/charger). I always spend more than two hours a day in a car so running this off just battery power is not an option…

Set it to Auto Power On/Off, this works really well. As soon as you turn the keys in your ignition the cigarette lighter gets power and the Road Angel fires up. When you turn your car off a motion detector spots the lack of movement (combined with the loss of power) and the Road Angel shuts down.

Buy one of these to mount him on: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B005OV8ND6/ref=oh_details_o01_s00_i00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

The sticky mount junk the Road Angel comes with means ‘permanently’ having the mounting base on your dash saying “Hey car thieves, there’s probably a Road Angel hidden in this car”. With the Decrescent ‘Bean Bag’ thing instead you can just stick this in your glove box/center console storage out of sight.

Set Single Beep (Audio Options) to Single instead of Loop (default setting), otherwise you will want to kill yourself after driving past your first Speed Camera. ‘Loop’ is like some 1970’s Space Invaders game when the aliens are REALLY low on the screen and doing that manic/demented scream thing in a really tinny tone. They have managed to get reasonably good quality ‘voices’ for the camera alerts (similar to TomTom) so quite why they fell back to nasty Low-Fi squawks in the final approach to a camera/blackspot is anyone’s guess.

The Adding New Locations feature is good in principle but I’m yet to be convinced it works as advertised. The idea is if you come across something new or wrong (perhaps a Speed Zone they have incorrectly identified with the wrong speed) you can then make a change, it stores this in your unit and later on:

When your ROAD ANGEL Gem updates, these new locations will also be downloaded to the central database, and can then be verified by the ROAD ANGEL team for possible inclusion in future updates

I’ve been adding the same ‘wrong’ 40mph zone every night for a week and it has neither kept this change on my own unit or downloaded my revision….go figure!!

 

More comments in another 500 miles maybe…

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