A Comprehensive Buying Guide to the Best Dashboard Cameras
When it comes to buying the best dashboard camera, the price is usually one of the top factors affecting a buyer’s decision. Most of the basic models would have a price range of about $50 to %100. As dashboard cameras become more and more common for car owners, both private automobile owners and motorcycle owners find them reassuring and useful.
With this buying guide, we are going to provide a list of some of the best dashboard cameras in today’s market. This aims to not only narrow down your long list of possible dash cams for your car, but it also aids in educating you with the various factors necessary to be considered when buying a dashboard camera.
What are the Benefits of a Dashboard Camera?
The dashboard camera was a product that slowly crept up on its consumers. Now, more and more automobile owners are buying dash cams for a number of reasons. With that in mind, here are some of the reasons as to why people are slowly realizing the importance of having a dash cam for their car.
1. Evidence of Vehicular Accidents
One of the most common benefits of a dash cam is that it provides evidence of vehicular accidents. The camera records on loop whenever the car starts. This means that the previous recordings are automatically replaced by a new footage every time the car restarts.
Moreover, these dashboard cameras are used as a means to provide an efficient as well as real-time evidence in case of car accidents. If by any chance, your car has been involved with an accident, you can provide solid proof that you were not on the wrong.
2. Prevention of Car Insurance Frauds
Most of the time, those who attempt fraud plan to get money by staging intentional car accidents with the hopes of getting paid by the victim. By using the recorded footage from your dashboard camera, you can then forward it to the insurance company involved to avoid paying unnecessary fees. With this act, the fraudster’s attempts are not accomplished and it lowers your rates with a number of insurance companies.
3. Capturing of Unexpected Crimes
One of the most helpful advantages that a dashboard camera can provide is its ability to capture crimes. This feature will allow the dash cam to stay on stand by until motion surrounding the car is detected. If in any instance, somebody should break into your car at night, you simply rewatch the footage to gather any evidence of the individual responsible for the wreckage.
How to Choose a Dashboard Camera For Your Car
These dashboard cameras or car cameras are exactly what they sound like. They are smaller than your regular cameras and are installed in your car. As for the reasons why an individual should invest in a dash cam, you have just learned all about it in the previous section of this buying guide. Nevertheless, this section of the article will now focus on how you can effectively choose among the wide array of dash cams in today’s market.
With that in mind, here are some of the factors you should consider in your purchase:
• Dual View Car Camera System
Should you decide to buy a dash cam for your car, you should consider its driving monitoring capabilities. You would want a device that has a dual view car camera system. The dual-camera dash cams is a great example of a driver monitoring feature. With this, you’ll have two cameras which are simultaneously in use – one for the passenger compartment and another one through your car’s windshield.
• GPS Tracking
A GPS tracking feature is one of the most useful software in a vehicle. Information like travel speed as well as the location of sudden starts and stops are displayed for the driver’s benefit. Furthermore, there are certain dash cam products that have integrated turn-by-turn directional functionality.
In addition, there are also available dashboard cameras in today’s market that allows its GPS tracking feature to function without the need for a cellular data connection. While these models may be a bit pricier as compared to the traditional products, it is worthwhile as it can still work in areas with no cellular coverage.
• Looping Feature
A looping feature is one of the most basic features of the more modern dash cams in today’s market. With this, you no longer have to delete any footage manually because it automatically records over the old videos you no longer need.
• G-Force Sensors
If you are worried that the looping feature of dash cams may automatically erase important footage involving accidents, you may want to look for a product that has G-force sensors. With these sensors, it will detect when you have been in an accident. It will save the footage of the accident instead of looping over it.
• Nighttime Footage Reliability
Another great feature that you should look out for in-dash cams is its nighttime footage reliability. If you choose a dashboard camera that does not provide a high-quality recording capability, then there would be no point to recording it as it’s not much of use. Watch out for the rate of reliability of dash cams because even with those that possess night vision or infrared, you can still end up with unusable footage.
Our Top Picks for the Best Dashboard Cameras in Today’s Market
One of the reasons as to why we liked the Cobra CDR 840 is because it looks good and it’s easy to use. For those who are new to using dash cams, you may want to start with the CDR 840. In addition, it is sold at a market price of $35.95 which is a great deal considering the fact that it is packaged with aesthetics in mind.
It also features a built-in GPS that allows the driver to be aware of their location as well as speed. Furthermore, the G-Sensor technology automatically saves footages should the dash cam detect an accident.
While the Cobra CDR 840 features a built-in GPS, it can sometimes be unreliable. In certain cases when satellites are difficult to reach or if the weather is causing a disturbance with the signal, it may be unwise to rely on the GPS of the Cobra CDR 840.
Some of the pros we have listed down for the Cobra CDR 840 includes the looks of the dash cam, the affordability of the product, the built-in GPS, and its G-Sensor software. On another note, the Cobra CDR 840’s GPS can be unreliable at times.
As compared to the Cobra CDR 840, the RoadHawk DC-2 provides some of the best image quality in the dash cam market; however, it lacks the looks and aesthetics provided by its competitors. Nonetheless, it features Gyro-balanced image stabilization, as well as an external audio input, that greatly adds to the quality of the recorded footages.
Similar to most dash cams, the RoadHawk DC-2 features a built-in GPS technology that takes care of the vehicle’s location and speed. Should there be any instances when the connection is unreliable, the car owner can have the option of buying an external GPS antenna connection.
On the downside, the RoadHawk DC-2 is not very aesthetically pleasing. Furthermore, it appears bulky and less sleek as compared to its competitors.
The RoadHawk DC-2 has limited features; however, if you are on the lookout for a basic dashboard camera for your car, this is the perfect one for you. It provides you with the basic features of a dash cam less the complexity of having to understand how some features work.
One thing that we have noticed with the Garmin Dash Cam 55 is that it is very small and compact. One may think that this little gadget does not possess the capability of a dash cam; however, you would be surprised as to what this can do.
First and foremost, the creators of the Garmin Dash Cam 55 combined their knowledge on how fitness trackers and action cameras work. As a result, they have invented a dashboard camera for your car that offers excellent sharp imagery, as well as amazing video quality, all in a compact size.
The Garmin Dash Cam 55 offers a 1440p video capture at a rate of 30p. The video footage of this dash cam would go perfectly well with capturing unexpected accidents and crimes. The 122-degree viewing angle is a good addition to its long list of features.
We love the Garmin Dash Cam 55’s attachable polarizing filter; this is responsible for cutting out any unwanted glare from your car’s windscreen. If you think about it, this feature is an added safety feature for both the driver and its passengers. Other features include G-Sensor technology, a built-in GPS, and voice control that will come in handy when alerting the driver of any impending danger surrounding the vehicle.
While there may be dash cams out there that offer wider optics than the Garmin Dash Cam 55, you can rest assured that this dash cam can properly fulfill its role. In addition, we feel like this dashboard camera would do better if it has a long battery life or if its apps provide a much wider range of control.
The Garmin Dash Cam 55 presents a wide array of benefits and features including its size, its excellent sharp imagery and amazing video quality, its attachable polarizing filter, its G-Sensor technology, its built-in GPS, and the dash cam’s voice control. In the end, you would know if the Garmin Dash Cam 55 is the perfect dash cam for you if it fulfills all or most of your driving needs.
Some of the standard features of the ApeMan includes a video quality of 1080p in full HD and crisp video footage. The best part of the ApeMan is that it features a really wide 170-degree lens. With this, you can definitely capture any unexpected action. What we love about the ApeMan is that it may not be as compact as other dash cams in the market; however, it possesses amazing video quality.
In addition, the ApeMan also has a built-in GPS that takes care of the vehicle’s location and speed. It also has a built-in WiFi that allows the car owner to easily transfer videos and images to a cellular phone and other smart devices without causing too much fuss.
On the downside, there are certain things that we feel the ApeMan should improve on. First and foremost, it’s not the cheapest in today’s market. With that in mind, we feel like it’s better to seek out other dash cams if you have to follow a certain budget for it. Secondly, some of the added features of the dash cam are sold separately.
In the end, the ApeMan offers a car owner with a wide number of benefits. This dash cam is a great all-around package. It takes into consideration almost every aspect needed in a dashboard camera. Price wise its spot on. One of the best value dash cams on the market.
Thinkware is a great company that supplies the world with amazing dashboard cameras. As for the F800 Pro 2, you can rest assured that it possesses crystal-clear footage and a great night mode for taping at night.
It’s Super Night Vision is amazing as it boosts low-light settings. As a result, there is improved image quality at night. If you are more concerned as to what could happen to your car when it is parked, the time-lapse feature of the Thinkware F800 Pro 2 can act as your own personal CCTV camera.
As for the sensors of this dash cam, it features a 2.19MP Sony Exmor CMOS camera. It is designed to be installed just below your car’s rear-view mirror. The overall look of the dash cam is very simple yet sleek. It only has a few small buttons and no unnecessary external screens.
In addition, the Thinkware F800 Pro 2 also has an onboard WiFi that allows the car owner to easily transfer the images and video footages to any smart device should the need arises. All you have to do is simply change a few things in the dash cam’s menu and you are good to go!
As for the things that we don’t like about the Thinkware F800 Pro 2, we feel like the buttons are too fiddly. In addition, the lack of a rear camera can also upset some of the consumers.
The Thinkware F800 Pro 2 is a great dash cam. For us, this is the perfect dashboard camera for those who are looking to find a hassle-free way of quickly transferring videos to smart devices through an onboard WiFi.
This dash cam features an Ultra 2K HD with a very broad 145-degree viewing angle. In addition, we love how this dash cam has a very simple user interface. In fact, there have been certain reports that this dash cam has been voted as the best device in its category.
The other features of the Z-Edge Z3 are its 3-inch touchscreen display; this makes camera interaction very easy. You can easily set up the camera and simply let it do its thing. Most of its functionality has been automated by the manufacturers as a means to ease the use of it.
We also love how the Z-Edge Z3 has a loop recording function, which means that no important video footages are erased. Furthermore, this model will instantly fire up as soon as your vehicle starts; just be sure to plug the dash cam into the power source and you have nothing else to worry about.
The Z-Edge Z3 can be quite on the expensive side of things. In addition, it actually possesses fewer features as compared to the other dashboard cameras in today’s market. Lastly, we are pretty upset that the Z-Edge Z3 does not have its own built-in GPS.
When it comes to the Z-Edge Z3, we feel like its best feature is its easy auto operation as well as its superb image quality. The quality of the images and video footages should be your number one concern when buying a dashboard camera for your car. With this dash cam, you can ensure that the recordings will be of high-quality and useful, especially when you want to utilize it as evidence to prove your innocence.