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Old 08-16-2010, 12:50 PM   #1
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Back Up Camera Ghost!

Been going on for two years. At the end of my rope! Could use a real expert on this one. Have a 2007 Country Coach Allure 470. Three camera system: back up, left and right. System is viewed on Pioneer AVIC-N3 Multimedia AV and Navigation Server.

System works great, until you've been on the road for a while (sometimes within a few miles, other times it takes a hundred miles or more). Suddenly, back up camera screen goes black and system defaults to left camera. Have noticed that both foot brake and/or engine brake button cause back up screen to go black (only back up screen goes black while navigation side of screen is fine). Sometimes I can tap the brake pedal and back up screen comes back on, sometimes it doesn't. Sometimes I can shut Pioneer system off, restart and sometimes back up screen returns, sometimes not. Left and right cameras never fail.

Have had dealer as well as mobile repair look over sytem. Both say it is functioning as intended. Obviously they haven't been able to duplicate probem. Have also checked connections at back up camera and all is well. Am convinced a short or power issue linked to the braking of the coach (either with pedal or engine brake swith) may be causing feedback sufficient to shut down back up screen.

Anyone have any thought as to how to troubleshoot this "Ghost"? Besides being irritating (to say the least), I find it dangerous to move back over to the right lane after passing with no back up screen to insure I have enough room. With toad I am 65' long. Manufacturer is gone. Any help would be appreciated, including recommending a real pro to help me troubleshoot if necessary.
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Old 08-17-2010, 04:16 AM   #2
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I think the weakest link is going to be the cable from camera to monitor. I would suggest getting one and temporarily running it for testing and if correction is made; make permanent install.
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Old 08-18-2010, 08:43 AM   #3
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It does truly appear to be haunted. The correlation of the problem with your brakes is really hard to fathom. All the brakes could be doing is to decrease the power temporarily or to put a spike in it. Sometimes relating events turns out not to be valid. Except for the bake issue, you could just have a problem with the back up camera or or the Pioneer monitor.
Here is something I troubleshot yesterday. My Voyager system with back up camera only began to work intermittently and then not at all. I finally isolated the problem to the port on the monitor where the camera cable plugs in. The Camera 1 port doesn't work and the Camera 2 port does work. You could plug your back up camera in a side camera port and see what happens. You can narrow it down and eventually find the problem.
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Old 08-18-2010, 09:16 PM   #4
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Start troubleshooting

When the system fails and the coach is stopped does it return to normal?

If so, then can it be made to fail by doing same actions while coach is stopped?

If stable while stopped then the fault is newton based, things moving do not want to stop...

You may have some cables tied to something that has come loose and moves when the brakes are applied.

If being stopped does not matter then you have a bad voltage or ground issue that is disturbed by the current going to the brake lights or other loads.

You will need to sheak up on the problem once it is failed to see what causes changes, if you cannot get it to fail then you are going to need to start tugging and wiggleing things (gently) to see if you can "break it".
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Old 08-18-2010, 10:30 PM   #5
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Thanks to TQ60, J Walker & the venerable Wizard. I have run a temporarly cable from camera to monitor, problem continued. I have found problem to continue in motion and while parked. I have moved rear camera input from input #1 to input #2 AND re-connected every connection I can find under dash (as well as replaced all RCA cables). Will test these latest changes next week when we take our 8 hour drive from northern CA to Los Angeles. Will post the results asap. Kudos to all who have helped me brainstorm this "ghost"! Anyone who knows of an expert on this subject anywhere in California, please pass on the info and I'll go there!
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Old 08-19-2010, 03:52 AM   #6
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Sounds like a bad camera.
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Old 08-19-2010, 07:47 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michaels View Post
Kudos to all who have helped me brainstorm this "ghost"! Anyone who knows of an expert on this subject anywhere in California, please pass on the info and I'll go there!
I call them Gremlins that intermittently cause problems and then don't appear when running a test. They appear just right to indicate the problem is in the area where there is no problem. The trick is to out trick the Gremlin. I agree that you have isolated the problem to your camera. Not that expensive and fairly easy to replace. BTW good job.
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Old 09-16-2010, 07:32 AM   #8
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Replaced the camera with a new one. Did nothing. Am at a loss as to what to change out next. Would love to find a real audio/visual expert to walk through this whole system. I think that would be better money spent rather than changing out each piece until I find the the culprit.......IF I find the culprit. Will go anywhere in California if anyone has a recommendation?
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Old 09-17-2010, 10:00 AM   #9
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Did the new camera never produce a picture? The original one occasionally produced one. It is possible that the new camera is not working or not compatible. I agree that at a certain point troubleshooting yourself comes to an end.
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Old 09-17-2010, 11:40 AM   #10
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So far so good...

You have been doing a ood job of troubleshooting with limited resources.

Best proces with intermittent devices is to sneak up on the problem, "divide and concur" and if possible "move the problem".

Divide and concur is splitting the system into parts and isolating the issue to one part or the other, moving the problem is by changing routes, connecting the camera to a different input, by changing the input connection for the camera you have done both.

Did the problem follow the camera or the screen?

Wherever the problem is now is the issue, you have replaced cable and camera, did not state what the result of the input change was.

If these are "RCA" inputs then get another signal source, run with the inverter on and a DVD player connected to the original input to the screen, when the gost appears then select the other input and see if problem is still there.

If the device is digital the goasting may be a memory refresh problem, since it is intermittent it is not likely a screen burn issue, rather I would suspect the memory is not being properly managed.

Have you searched the web for any information on your display?

There may be an update to the software or other folks who may have had the same issue, the manufacturer also may be of help, if contacting them be sure to include the model number, serial number and if possible the software information that may appear when the screen is booting up.

Good luck!
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Old 09-17-2010, 10:48 PM   #11
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Replaced the original camera with the identical make and model number. Begining to think the problem may not be in the brake circuit at all, but rather a shifting of weight forward while braking. This weight shift may have caused wear to the camera cable which of course runs the full length of the rig. This wear may have caused a temporary short which only occurs when braking. This short will cause a ground and/or temporary drop of signal strength to the monitor. Have talked to the manufacturer of the camera controllor who says if there is a signal drop from the rear camera, system will default to the left camera, which it does! Leaving on a two and a half week trip tomorrow and will have some time mid-trip to trace the camera cable from back to front. Wish me luck! Here's to hoping my back holds out while I trace 50' of cable! Appreciate all the help with this interesting if not exasperating ghost!
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