[SOLVED] Reverse camera PCB pinout?

I got one of these to replace the aftermarket one that came with my car, and I wasn’t happy with the stupid lines it puts up on the picture, which lamely bend this way and that according to what direction the camera guesses you’re going… So I tried to buy a different one on eBay, and when it turned up it didn’t match the description and was identical to the one I already had. So I started mucking around with it…

The blue & white wires are just 12V to some LEDs on the front, the red is 3.3V from a lump in the wiring, and black & yellow are obviously ground & AV. But check out those other pads, labelled F, M & O… I’m wondering if one of those might be for something I recall seeing on another reversing camera for sale on eBay, where you cut a wire or something to kill the stupid lines. Any idea? I couldn’t google squat.

…Hang on, I bet the M is for mirror. But would it be shorted to ground or 3.3V?

F for full screen, maybe, since it’s a 4:3 picture being stretched onto a 16:9 monitor… or would that be happening in the monitor?

And maybe O is for on-screen display…

Any idea how I’d go about figuring out whether these pads get volts or ground?

O measures 29k to gnd & 9k to + with the positive probe on the O pad and 34k to gnd, and 9k to + the other way around.

M measures 30k to gnd & 9k to + with the positive probe on the M pad and 34k to gnd, and 9k to + the other way around.

F measures 10k to gnd & 40k to + with the positive probe on the F pad and 10k to gnd, and 34k to + the other way around.

Hey Kimmo,

It looks like those pads are all tied to ground somewhere through a resistor. to where they go and what they do its hard to tell.

Commonly in such devices (like reversing cameras), certain functions can be enabled or disabled by shorting specific lines to either power or ground. From your values, it’s possible these lines are intended to be shorted to ground to enable certain features. Without a schematic or further understanding of the board though, it’s hard to say for sure.

One potential way of finding out would be to try shorting each pin to ground one at a time and see if this affects the functionality of the camera in some way. (Disclaimer: this is just suggestion, and should be performed only if you are comfortable doing so and accept the risk of potentially damaging the device.)

Interested nonetheless in what the outcome of the test would be.


I hooked up a momentary pushbutton, in case that increased my odds of not frying it…

So shorting to ground was a good guess, at least for M & O, which I correctly guessed the function of.

Maybe it’s the other way around for F, given shorting it to ground did nothing, and the resistances tested the other way around…?

Or maybe it even needs to be shorted to the AV pad? One way to find out, I suppose…

…Well, I was right and I was wrong - that F pad needed + to work, but it’s just flip vertically. I guess I’ll have to dig into the monitor if I want a proper aspect ratio…

Hi Mimmo
Having fun aren’t we.

I think those “stupid” lines are an indication of how much space the car needs in the shed or wherever.

I don’t think the camera is guessing anything. I think these lines “bending” indicate the front wheels are not centred (info from the car electronics) and the direction you are going to go when you move.

I think this is a facility to mirror horizontally. Some people prefer to see the view as seen in the rear view mirror and some as if they turn and look backwards. Up to the user.

My car did not have a reversing camera fitted so I fitted one myself about 2 years ago. It does not have the “bending” lines as there is no intelligent connection to the car electronics. But it does have the static lines and the mirror function. I can change the positioning or delete these at my discretion. I currently have these deleted but when I get around to it I might put them back. All this is available via buttons on the monitor. (when I find my instructions)

If you still have the instructions that went with the camera you might find there is a way to do all this without changing anything inside the beast.
Cheers Bob

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Yeah nah, as I said, this is an aftermarket camera, replacing an older aftermarket camera which died. It’s only connected to power via the reverse light circuit, and the monitor. The car is from '07, so the optional screen you could get it with was only for satnav. This camera does silly business with bending the lines this way and that according to what it sees, and this ‘feature’ is a godawful abortion.

As for mirroring, it’s safe to say everyone would want that in a reversing camera, but obviously this PCB is intended for more applications. There was absolutely no way to access these options, short of popping open the enclosure and digging out all the glue inside, which I may well do again to the other one above my number plate, to bugger off the stupid lines.

As for this camera, it’s going to be a periscope I can poke out of my sunroof to see past bastard SUVs in traffic (remains to be seen whether that’s a practical proposition, but I reckon it’s definitely worth a shot). The monitor has two inputs, and wakes up when either one gets a signal, so a power switch on the bottom of that aerial, and voila.

What would be super sweet is if the wires were a ribbon cable on a self-retracting spool, but oh well.

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Hi Kimmo
You haven’t shared with the forum the make and model of this camera. The best we got was

which you must agree is pretty useless.

However I just came across this one which seems pretty similar and you may get some useful info here

Cheers Bob

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It was a while ago so it’s no longer in my eBay history. Cheap generic.

As I said, no wire loop options, had to dig into the glue to expose them, and I figured them out and posted them here.

Guess I should edit the thread title.

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