Operating a diesel rig can be a pretty tricky proposition. The interstate highway system alone contains nearly 47,000 miles of pavement that contains more than a few less-than-comfortable interchanges. Making things even more complicated are the millions of drivers crowding all these thoroughfares. Digital technology can make all of this manageable, but only if presented in an easy, natural form. The Garmin dezlCam LMTHD aims to do just this with a device that’s compact yet simple to use.
Out of the box, this GPS device weighs only 11.3 ounces and has a 6.1 inch touchscreen. The dezlCam LMTHD magnetically attaches to an adjustable mount for quick removal. The mount, in turn, is secured to the windshield through suction. In this location, it can be easily accessed while simultaneously serving as a dashcam. The unit normally runs off a 12-volt power supply, but it includes a rechargeable battery that stores up to a half-hour’s worth of juice. The interactive screen can handle multiple points of contact, so drawing two fingers together or apart will shrink or enlarge the current image. Since operating a touchscreen isn’t always a good idea, this GPS navigator offers an audio option. The Garmin dezlCam LMTHD has both speech recognition and speech synthesis capabilities. Verbally, predetermined commands along with addresses can be given to the device. In turn, spoken instructions on navigating to a desired location are provided through the powerful built-in speaker.
The Garmin dezlCam LMTHD derives a lot of its capabilities through its ability to pull in information from external sources. Certainly, as a GPS device, it can keep continuous track of your location. The unit also has Bluetooth capability. With this, the dezlCam’s microphone and speaker can be bypassed with a wireless headset for improved communications. When coupled with a smartphone using the Smartphone Link app, Bluetooth makes up-to-the-minute data available. Of course, Garmin’s own HD Digital Traffic technology utilizes the unit’s GTM60 HD receiver to capture traffic condition updates twice a minute and exhibits them alongside the onscreen map. Finally, a 20 inch USB cord permits data transfer with any Windows or Mac computer.
Discerning on-screen images is easy thanks to 800 by 480 pixel resolution using thin-film transistor or TFT technology that ensures super-sharp focus. A extra-bright white backlight maintains clarity even in bright daylight. Map displays are intuitive with both the typical road atlas view alongside a forward-facing perspective view, the photoReal junction display, that emulates what one sees through the windshield. With a destination entered, the Garmin dezlCam LMTHD provides markers on the images to provide the needed guidance along the route. Using GPS data, the unit also shows the vehicle’s own location on the map in real time with one of 14 different symbols. A complete set of NAVTEQ City Navigator maps are included with the device and provide complete coverage of the US and its territories as well as Mexico and Canada. Points of interest like hotels, fueling stations, ATMs, or WiFi hot spots are included on the maps. Out of date maps are no problem since a lifetime supply of free updated maps are part of the package. The map upgrades occur several times per year and are obtained through online downloads.
A key component of the dezlCam LMTHD is its dashcam. There are two settings available. In high-resolution mode, the video camera operates at 2.1 megapixel to generate 1920 by 1080 sharpness. Setting the camera to its 1 megapixel mode produces 1280 by 720 videos that consume less storage memory. The device comes with an 8 GB microSD card to hold video footage, but it can be upgraded to as high as a 64 GB card. Using the dezlCam’s G-sensor, the dashcam automatically starts rolling when activated by a collision. Another option that can be selected through the touchscreen is providing sound with video instead of muted images. Concurrent data like time, date, location, and vehicle speed can also be affixed to the video. Also, since the GPS device is attached to the mount magnetically, it can be quickly removed and used for filming by hand as a portable camera. If greater coverage is desired, the device can interface with the Garmin BC30 wireless backup camera.
The first thing anyone want a device like this for is to give them the most efficient path from A to B. The dezlCam goes a step farther by taking the vehicle’s own characteristics into account. Routes are calculated based on whether you’re a car or an 18-wheeler, so road restrictions can be avoided. Finer details like specific weight or type of cargo can also be included for additional route alterations. Also, for truckers, the unit can keep tabs on hours-of-service information like driving time, on-duty time, and sleeper time.