Dashboard cameras, also known as “dash cams,” are video cameras that can record video and audio that is wired into your car and automatically turns on and starts recording once the car is started.
It is usually located on the windshield. They come with built-in memory and record on loop, ensuring that you never miss an accident.
Purchasing a dash cam for the first time can be a lot of work, especially if you don’t know what you’re looking for.
The first thing we suggest is to search for dash cam reviews on the internet that should give you enough information about the perfect dash cam for you.
For easy reference, here are some of the things you should consider in choosing a dash cam.
Typically, this is the most important detail when selecting a dash cam. Make sure to get one that shoots in high definition (1080p). This feature is not only for high-end dash cams.
You can get a decent high-definition dash cam for a cheap price. If you spend less and opt to get a non-HD camera, you’ll most likely be disappointed with the video quality, throwing away the money you spent.
Make sure to test it first so you won’t be a victim of fake dash cams.
When it comes to dash cams, choosing a discreet camera is key. This should be small enough to be hidden at the back of your rear view mirror. Another important factor is its color.
Black is the least noticeable color for a dash cam and often blends in with the rear-view mirror. The smallest dash cams usually don’t have viewing screens but this should not be a major issue for most people.
Another important factor to consider is reliability. If many users are having serious problems with their car dash cam such as a blurry image or video, recording hangs or even an unstable mount, you should look elsewhere.
Make sure you check out the dash cam’s reviews and consider cameras that can withstand high temperatures, especially if you will be using the dash cam in parking mode.
One of the most common security features of a high quality dash cam is a G-sensor which allows you to lock in video files automatically in the event of any crash or collision.
Its sensitivity should be adjusted well enough that it would respond even to sudden brakes.
Another feature is the loop recording wherein video files are automatically compressed and older videos are overwritten to have enough space for new ones.
Next is the motion detection feature wherein the camera turns on and records once any motion is detected around the vehicle. These features should be present in the dash cam you’re planning to purchase to make sure you’re getting value for your money.
Some dash cams come with a memory card, some don’t. In any case, make sure the dash cam you’ll be getting has an internal storage in the event that your memory card gets full.
You should be able to record plenty of videos, especially if you’re going on a long trip. You’ll generally be able to record up to eight hours of video on a 32GB SD card.
If you want to record more than that, make sure you have extra memory cards ready with you.
Other things to look for
Power cables and adapter
Make sure your dash cam package has power cables and an adapter for in-car charging. Cables should be long enough to be plugged in and of the best quality for long time use.
The dash cam of your choice should have a viewing screen for you to make sure it is recording and to also see what your camera sees. It should be big enough for you to see the front of your car clearly, but small enough that it won’t distract you from driving,
Once left in park mode, your camera should be charged enough to record. Some dash cams rely on constantly having it plugged into the charger for it to be used.
In that case, you won’t be able to record once your car is parked. So make sure your built in battery can work long enough on its own.