best dash cam

Best Dash Cam Review 2017

Joseph Dash Cams, Reviews 0 Comments

In a perfect world we would never have to worry about the honesty of perfect strangers – everyone would tell the truth all the time. Unfortunately we don’t live in a perfect world and trusting in the honesty of everyone you meet can easily land you in hot water. If you’ve ever been in a car accident you may have felt unfairly treated because the version of events of the other party was quite different than your own. What if you had a way to protect yourself and always have the truth about any accident or road mishap available to you at any time? That’s where a dashboard camera comes in.

On this site we explore a lot of different types of smart technology, but dashboard cameras have to rate right up there as one of the coolest pieces of technology that have the potential to change the way the world works. That’s why we decided to take a closer look at the various dashboard camera options available to you and there are a lot of them. These cameras can capture entire accidents in full HD quality video and with audio as well. No more worrying about if your side of the story will be believed or not – it’s all right there in recorded video!

The great thing about a dashboard camera is that all you have to do is hook one up and let it do the rest. Most are designed to automatically start recording when you start driving and they can sense when you’re in an accident and mark that footage as a priority so that it’s never automatically deleted. They’re full of other great features, which we’ll take a look at below and they can really be a life changing bit of technology. The future is happening all around us and the best thing is you don’t always have to break the bank to take part in the revolution – dashboard cameras are both useful and affordable.

Features to Look for In Dashboard Cameras:

Full HD Resolution

In the past couple of decades HD quality video has become the expected norm and you should expect no less from a dashboard camera. You’d be hard pressed to find one that isn’t these days, but if you do come across a cheap camera that doesn’t offer HD quality video do yourself a favor and keep looking. The idea of a dashboard camera is to provide clarity in the case of any type of road incident, but if your video quality is distorted and impossible to follow it might not help at all. The minimum you should be looking for is a camera with at least 1920×1080 HD quality video.

Loop Recording

Dashboard cameras normally use SD cards as their storage medium and, depending on the quality of your camera, they may be compatible with anywhere between a 32GB and 128GB SD card – obviously the higher the storage capacity the better. The best dashboard cameras are designed to keep recording until they run out of space and then they will loop back to the oldest video and automatically record over them. This ensures that you never record over recent video that you may need access to. It’s a built-in protection feature that should be included in any camera you’re considering purchasing for your dashboard.

G Sensor Detection

If you’ve been in an accident you may want to access that video months, or even years in the future. The last thing you want is your camera automatically recording over an important clip because it ran out of space on your SD card. That’s why almost all dashboard camera manufacturers include something called a G sensor. This is designed to detect when you make a hard turn, brake suddenly, or when there’s an impact event and mark the video to be locked. That way when you run out of space on your card it will not record over those important events. This is a feature you’ll want to make sure your dashboard camera has.

Wide Dynamic Range

Have you ever watched a video in bright sunlight and had difficulty making out what was going on? That’s because there’s a lot of contrast between light and dark which can mess with your video image. Dashboard cameras normally incorporate a piece of technology called WDR, or Wide Dynamic Range to deal with this issue. If you’re camera has this feature it will automatically reduce the contrast between light and dark parts of the image making the video crystal clear. Without this feature it may not matter if you’re camera uses high quality HD video as you won’t be able to see what’s going on anyway!

SD Card Support

If you can, it’s best to look for a camera that supports at least 64GB SD cards as anything less won’t record more than a couple of hours of HD video at best. If you spend a lot of time on the road because of your job, or you just like to travel, this won’t cut it. There are older model cameras that only support 8GB SD cards, but I wouldn’t recommend one – no matter how great a deal they may seem to be. They’re essentially a waste of money. It would be better to hold off for something better.

Wi-Fi Connect

Wi-Fi technology has changed our lives in so many ways it’s hard to keep track of all of them. The better dashboard cameras also take advantage of this technology. If you can find a dashboard camera that allows you to connect with your smartphone via Wi-Fi that fits your budget it’s definitely worth it. Instead of having to remove the SD card and plug it into a tablet or laptop for viewing, you can quickly view an accident video in real time discreetly on your phone. When an accident happens having quick access to footage like this can potentially eliminate any misunderstandings.

Night Vision

You won’t always be driving in perfect daylight conditions so you need a camera that works well no matter what time of day it is. The headlights on your car may provide some light for your camera, but there aren’t any guarantees how effective this will be. Ideally, you should look for a dashboard camera that has night vision capability so that the videos it takes are crisp and clear no matter what time of day it is. Unfortunately, there are dashboard cameras that don’t have this feature so you need to choose wisely.

Automatic Motion Detection

Without a doubt dashboard cameras are a very useful piece of technology, but they’re not much good to you if you forget to turn them on. If you’re as forgetful as I can be, that’s likely to be a reoccurring problem. The manufacturers of dashboard cameras have come up with a simple way to deal with this issue. Almost all dashboard cameras have automatic motion detection sensors that can recognize as soon as the cars ignition is turned on and begin recording. It’s a great feature that removes the potential for human forgetfulness and gives you that extra piece of mind that your trip will always be recorded.

Best Dashboard Cameras Reviewed

I’m guessing you have a good idea now why we’re so excited about the potential of dashboard cameras. These really are innovative devices that can come in handy when you need them most. It is a pretty crowded marketplace though, and that’s why we’ve taken a look at some of the key features of popular models for you. You’ll find our analysis of some great choices in the rest of this article, so that you can easily compare them and make a good purchase decision.  If you want to see how they compare side by side take a look at the table below.

Feature Rexing V1 Spytec A118-C Goluk T2 Spy Tec G1W Z-Edge 3 Aukey Itru X3
Full HD
Loop Recording
G-Sensor
Wi-Fi
Features 8 8 8 7 8 7.5 7
Design 7 7 8 7 8 8 7.5
Usability 7 8 8 7.5 8 8 7.5
Performance 7 7.5 7 6.5 7.5 7.5 7.5
Scores SCORE 7.0 SCORE 7.5 SCORE 8.0 SCORE 7.0 SCORE 8.0 SCORE 7.5 SCORE 7.5
Prices $$ $ $$$ $ $$ $ $$
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Rexing V1 2.4″ LCD FHD 1080p 170 Wide Angle Dashboard Camera

best dash cam
Features
8.0
Design
7.0
Usability
7.0
Performance
7.0

Features

The Rexing V1 dashboard camera has all of the features you’re looking for in a dashboard camera. It has full 1920×1080 HD video and it will automatically record those videos as soon the cars ignition is initiated. It also has an accident auto detection G-Sensor which senses when an accident is happening and will automatically lock the video of the event in your SD cards memory so that it can’t be erased unless you physically do it yourself. To top it all off the videos are filmed using WDR technology, which means you don’t have to worry about the details getting lost in the shadows – you’ll always have clear videos of your driving events.

Design

You don’t want a dashboard camera that’s bulky and highly visible – the idea is to find one that’s discreet and unobtrusive. The V1 is a sleekly designed, compact dashboard camera that attaches to your windshield just above the mirror. There’s a small preview screen located on the interior facing side that will allow you to quickly review an incident right after it happens. You’ll also find basic buttons such as record on the front if you need to manually start or stop a recording. This is a great option to have just in case the automatic recording function malfunctions.

Usability

This camera is simple to set up and simple to use. It attaches to your dashboard with a simple adhesive pad and it powers up by plugging into your cars lighter. As we’ve indicated the recordings are designed to begin automatically as soon as you start your car and that takes the guess work out of it for the user. You do have those manual override controls if you need them, but you probably never will. It’s a user friendly camera that won’t disappoint.

Performance

It seems clear that it has all of the desired features of a dashboard camera, but how does it actually perform? For the most part it does a great job. One complaint that seems to be a concern for some users is the mediocre nighttime recordings. When it records at night the videos are okay, but they do lack a little detail. By contrast the daytime videos are very clear. Some customers have also complained that it inexplicably stops recording on occasion, which is certainly a concern. Fortunately, this doesn’t seem to be a common problem for most owners of this camera.

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Spy Tec A118-C Capacitor Edition Full 1080P HD Video Car Dashboard Camera

best dash cam
Features
8.0
Design
7.0
Usability
8.0
Performance
7.5

Features

With a name like the Spy Tec A118-C you’d expect something that’s good at stealth and that is an apt description of this camera. It has a wide angle lens for capturing a panoramic view of what’s going on around your car and the videos it takes are in 1080P HD. It’s heat resistant up to 140 F, so you won’t have to worry about it overheating if you leave it exposed on your windshield on a hot summer day. It also has WDR technology, automatic motion detection in the event of an accident, and built-in night vision capabilities. For a dashboard camera typically priced under $100 those are some pretty impressive specifications.

Design

The A118-C really is the perfect “spy cam”. Its compact design will practically make it disappear into the background on your windshield which is really what you want as other motorist you may be involved with accidents with won’t always take kindly to the fact that they’re being recorded. It also has a small screen for real-time viewing with all of the basic controls you’d find on any standard video player such as an accessible menu, record button, and navigation controls. It’s a practical design that will have a familiar feel for anyone that’s ever owned a video camera.

Usability

You don’t have to worry about charging a battery with this camera as all it needs for power is your cars lighter. As is the case with most decent dashboard cameras, recordings are initiated automatically when the cars ignition is turned on. The manual controls are available on the front panel under the video preview screen if you want to review a recent recording and the camera angle can be adjusted manually if you’re not satisfied with the view of the road in front of you that your camera is providing.

Performance

By almost all accounts this is a great little camera for the money. It would be nice if it was capable of working with SD cards larger than 32 GB, but that is enough storage to get you through at least a few long trips and you can always save those videos to other media, or switch SD cards when necessary. A common complaint with less expensive cameras like this is that it takes great video during the day, but the nighttime video is less than ideal and that applies here as well. Perhaps the best thing about it is that it works right out of the box. You simply attach it to the dashboard, plug it into the lighter, and start your car – that’s all there is to it.

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Goluk T2 FHD 1080P 152° WDR Car Dash Cam with Night Vision

best dash cam
Features
8.0
Design
8.0
Usability
8.0
Performance
7.0

Features

The Goluk T2 FHD is an innovative dashboard camera that has some features that help to separate it from the competition in a crowded marketplace. For one thing, it utilizes Wi-Fi technology that allows you to view your videos discretely on your smartphone as long as you’re within about 10 to 15 feet of your camera. Once you’ve downloaded the videos to your phone you can use the companion app to do a lot of different things – you can even post your videos on social media if you want to share with friends and family members. There’s also a Magickey function to take quick 12 second snapshot videos to capture road conditions or just to capture your surroundings.

Design

If you’re looking for something that’s more than just functional, you’re likely to love the look of the T2. This dashboard camera is very unique looking with an ultra-modern design that will appeal to the techie that has to have the latest cool gadget. There is no preview screen on this camera, but you don’t really need it with the ability to connect with your phone over Wi-Fi and view videos that way instead. You’d be forgiven if you mistook this camera for an Amazon Echo, or a Beats pill speaker as it has that sort of look to it.

Usability

This is an easy camera to set up and use. Its sleek design means it won’t obscure your view at all when attached to your windshield and it mounts easily with 3M double sided adhesive tape. Best of all it has a 360 degree rotatable design that allows you to capture everything around you if you so desire. It also has an automatically activated microphone to record the audio of any driving event as well. They may not have thought about everything in this dashboard camera, but they’ve thought of a lot of things that other manufacturers have clearly overlooked.

Performance

It’s nice to have all of these cool features and design innovations, but they’re of no use if they don’t work as advertised. For the most part this camera works as the manufacturer has designed it, but there are some customers that have expressed concerns with how well it works in colder weather. It seems to have a tendency to continuously reboot itself until the car warms up, which may be a bit of a problem as traffic incidents aren’t likely to wait until it’s convenient for the camera. The manufacturer does note that the Goluk works best between 10 degrees and 140 degrees, so they do acknowledge that it’s not ideal to be used in freezing temperatures.

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Spy Tec G1W Full HD 1080P H.264 Car DVR Camera Recorder Dashboard Cam

best dash cam
Features
7.0
Design
7.0
Usability
7.5
Performance
6.5

Features

If you’ve considered buying a dashboard camera, but were a little concerned about how much you might have to pay for one then the Spy Tec G1W is a great place to start. This camera is one of the most affordable around and it has most of the features you’ll find on much more expensive cameras. It is capable of capturing full HD videos and audio as well. This camera also starts up automatically when you turn your car on and it does detect when an accident has happened and automatically saves and locks that video so that it’s available to you when you need it.

Design

I actually like the design of this camera much better than some of the more expensive models it competes with. It’s equipped with its own separate suction window attachment and the camera itself is thin and unobtrusive – it almost looks like a secondary rear-view mirror. It’s powered using an extra-long cord that you plug into the cars lighter.

Usability

Although the camera is activated automatically you do have a small video screen available for previewing recent videos that faces towards the driver. The video controls are located on either side of the camera and include playback, record, and rewind functions. It’s a simple, but functional design that doesn’t require much learning curve.

Performance

Perhaps the most common complaint about this camera is that it has average audio quality at best. The sound seems to be a little quiet and in some cases even muffled. Other than that it seems to work as advertised. The videos are of decent quality and it is a good deal for such an affordable dashboard camera. It’s ideal for the first time buyer.

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Z-Edge 3″ Screen 2K Ultra Full HD1296P 2560×1080 Car Dash Cam

best dash cam
Features
8.0
Design
8.0
Usability
8.0
Performance
7.5

Features

There’s always one product that seems to offer a little bit more than most of its competitors and that’s true of the Z-Edge 3” 2K Ultra. Its name gives you a hint of how good this camera is. It features Ultra HD video that takes some of the clearest video images you’ll find on any dashboard camera anywhere. It offers a 145 degree field of view that captures just about everything in front of you and it includes common features such as automatic recording and accident G-Sensors. You also get a pretty decent 18 month warranty which should give you enough time to discover any glitches before your warranty runs out.

Design

This camera actually looks like a camera unlike some other dashboard cameras out there. It has a powerful lens which exceeds the industry average and it has a rear facing preview screen for quick viewing of your recordings. It attaches to your windshield with a simple mounting structure that sticks to your windshield tenaciously and its powered using a lighter plug in adapter.

Usability

The video controls on the Z-Edge 3 are a little more advanced than you’ll find on some other dashboard cameras – it’s controlled entirely using a built-in touchscreen. It can also be pivoted up to 90 degrees in either direction if you want to capture a different perspective. All of its main functions are activated automatically though, which makes operation of this camera relatively straightforward.

Performance

The true test of any consumer electronic product is how it stands up to scrutiny from customers and this camera has overwhelmingly positive reviews. The only real complaint seems to be with the audio quality, which can by some accounts be a little suspect. The video quality is second to none though and that’s really the main concern when it comes to dashboard cameras.

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AUKEY Dash Cam, Full HD 1080P

best dash cam
Features
7.5
Design
8.0
Usability
8.0
Performance
7.5

Features

If I was to pick a sleeper in the dashboard video camera category it would probably be the Aukey Dash Cam. This is a well-designed camera with a 170 degree field of view which is fairly impressive. It retails for less than $100 and it’s got a competitive 2 year warranty. It has all of the best features of other dashboard cameras such as automatic start and G-Sensor recording lock in the event of accidents, but it also has the ability to record whenever there is motion in front of it – even if the car isn’t turned on.

Design

One of the main reasons I like this camera so much is because of its compact design. It easily fits underneath your rear-view mirror and you’d be forgiven for mistaking it for a GPS navigation system because that’s what it looks like. The ideal dashboard camera should go relatively unnoticed by those you’re involved in incidents with if you want to avoid the potential for conflict and this camera is perfect for flying under the radar.

Usability

This isn’t just a nice stealthy looking dash cam though – it’s also a very practical device. It attaches to your windshield using a simple 3M adhesive pad or a suction cup holder if you prefer. It uses your cars lighter for its power source and it even comes with clips so that you can hide the wires out of the way as best as possible. The video playback screen has a few simple controls and is easily within reach if you place it just under the mirror as recommended.

Performance

It’s hard to find any product that pleases everybody, but the Aukey dashboard camera comes close. This camera has surprised a lot of people with its level of quality and the only minor complaint is that the audio could be a little better. This is a common problem for dashboard cameras though, so it’s not a major issue.

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ITrue X3 Dash Cam

best dash cam
Features
7.0
Design
7.5
Usability
7.5
Performance
7.5

Features

The Itrue X3 Dash Cam is another great dashboard camera with a ton of great features. You can actually connect your GPS to this camera so that accurate locations are recorded along with your videos, which are saved in full HD quality. It includes an automatic start feature, a G-Sensor lock in case of accidents, and videos are recorded in wide dynamic range. The night videos taken with this camera are definitely better than average and it uses standard SD storage for saving videos.

Design

This dashboard camera has a sort of retro feel to it – it looks like a camera from the 70’s or 80’s, except that you mount it on your dashboard using a simple adhesive and it takes videos instead of pictures. The back of the camera that faces the cabin, as you might expect, does have a video screen for playback with simple controls for viewing.

Usability

The playback buttons on the cabin facing screen are simple: you can play, record, rewind, and fast-forward. You can also power your camera off completely from this screen if you like. Recordings are triggered automatically when the car starts up and they’re saved until you’re SD card becomes full and then the camera uses built-in looping technology to begin recording over the oldest videos.

Performance

This is a camera with mostly positive reviews, but a few customers have complained about it freezing once in a while. The quality of the nighttime video is also a little suspect, but still good enough to make out important details. For a relatively inexpensive camera it’s a good choice.

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A Great Way to Protect Yourself

A dashboard camera is a great way to protect yourself and your loved ones in the event of an accident and it can also be a fun way to track your travels. If you’re serious about buying one make sure to find one that has lots of storage capacity, high quality video, and one that records automatically. Personally, I think finding one with Wi-Fi recording capabilities is a good idea, but you may not agree. There’s a good chance the majority of cars will have these in the near future because of their versatile nature and many potential uses.

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