Looking to find out what’s the best dash cam to buy for your vehicle? Well here are some quick guidelines and a checklist you can use to ensure to get what you are looking for. Having a dash cam in your vehicle is a great way to safeguard yourself against unscrupulous drivers.
Whether they are trying to flee the scene after hitting your car, or blaming you when you were not the cause of the accident, your dash cam is your objective witness to the scene. It shows exactly what took place and which party was at fault for cause the accident.
Basic Functions On a Dash Cam
Each dash cam comes with basic functions so you don’t need to worry about that part of it. The basic functions of a dash cam include the following:
- Loop Recording
- Parking Monitor
- Built-in G-Sensor
- Night Vision
Best Dash Cam Buy Guidelines
Despite the basic functions, all dash cams are not created equal. There are variations in the quality of images, angle lens (130 degree and upwards) as well as high dynamic range (HDR) technology. HDR technology in a dash cam actually improves the contrast, brightness, color etc., in an image while maintaining clarity. In a nutshell, it improves the overall image quality even if there are different exposures to ensure you get the best results.
Clear and vibrant images are an important function in any dash cam. For example, if you are driving at night or in low light environments, a dash cam with HDR technology can significantly improve image clarity. Not having clear and quality videos or images from your dash cam defeats the purpose of having one. So you definitely want to ensure that you get optimum recorded footage.
Resolution is also one of the dash cam functions that vary. While most dash cams come with 1080P, some are higher and offer better compression technology.
The best dash cam for you would be one that meets your needs. It may not necessarily be one with all the bells and whistles like the ROVE R2-4K. For example, The ROVE is a dash cam with GPS, WiFi as well as a parking mode notification system. That function lets you know that something happened to your vehicle while it was parked. So it saves you time searching through footage to find what happened.
If that fits your need, then that’s best for you. However, if you drive a bigger vehicle than a car, then the ROVE Stealth 4K dash cam would be more appropriate. Check out the video below.
Some dash cams also provide lane departure warnings as well as parking assistance. So if you drive frequently at night, the lane departure warning comes in handy. The parking assistance comes in handy anytime you are parking. So choosing the best dash cam for you, all depends on what you think you need in a dash cam.
The size of screen also varies. You can get a mini dash cam that comes with a smaller screen, or anywhere up to 4 inches.
Best Dash Cam Buy Checklist
The best dash cam to buy depends on your needs and perhaps your budget. Not everyone might want to spend $300 on a dash cam. Even so, that depends on the type of vehicle you drive. A dash cam for an RV would be a bit more expensive that one for your car. In addition to which, some dash cams that can be used for cars, may not be appropriate for trucks, trailers, 5th wheelers, or Recreational Vehicles (RVS) and the like.
In addition to considering the guidelines, the best dash cam to buy for you depends on the following four (4) things as well:
- Your vehicle type
- How much you want to spend (budget)
- Preferred dash cam functions
- Single, Dual (front and rear), or mirror dash cam (Type of dash cam
1. Your Vehicle Type
Driving a car is different to driving an SUV, trailer, truck, recreational vehicle (RV) or 5th wheeler. The blind spots are different so your chosen dash cam has to be appropriate to the vehicle you drive. For example, the Furrion Wireless System is perfect dash cam for a 5th wheeler, RVs, trailers, and similar types of vehicles. While you can get a good dash cam for a car for less that $50 that dash cam won’t be the best for larger vehicles like trucks and RVs etc.
In addition, it all depends on the functions you already have in your vehicle. If your vehicle already has GPS and or Wi-Fi, or a reverse camera, then you may not want a dash cam with those functions.
Of course you may want to consider how much you want to spend on a dash cam. You can get a dash cam for your car for under $50. Even so, you may have to make a sacrifice depending on the type of vehicle you drive. For example, if you drive an RV or 5th Wheel, then you know that navigating such a large vehicle can often be a challenge.
The Furrion wireless observation system is perfect for such vehicles, but it would definitely cost you more than $50. However, the TOGUARD dual dash cam is a great choice as well, for any car and has a great price point.
APEMAN dash cams are also great buys and very popular as well. The APEMAN mini is quickly becoming a hit with Amazon customers.
3. Preferred Dash Cam Functions
When it comes to dash cam functions you want to consider if you want one with all the bells and whistles or if a simple 1080P dash cam would meet your needs. Do you want the parking mode notification, the best resolution and imaging technology, lane departure warnings, etc.
4. Type of Dash Cam
When it comes to the type of dash cam you’ve got options. You can select a single camera unit that would capture what’s happening at the front of your vehicle only. Or you can decide on a dual dash cam that would capture what’s happening at the front and rear of your vehicle. Hey, stuff happens at the back of your vehicle as well.
You can also consider, front and cabin (interior). You still get a bit of the rear view and this type of dash cam can come in handy especially if you are a Lyft or Uber driver, or even a regular driver. In this case, the Vantrue N2 Pro Uber dual dash cam is a great choice.
Apart form these options, you may also want to consider a mirror dash cam.
To make the best dash cam choice for you or your loved ones, make a list of the functions you need in a dash cam. So apart from the basics, consider what else would come in handy while you are on the road. For example, would GPS, or lane departure warning be more beneficial to you? If you drive frequently at night, then lane departure warning would be a great feature to have.
Once you’ve made your list, decide on the type of dash cam you might want. Do you want a single, dual (front and rear or front and cabin), or a mirror dash cam?
At the end of the day, having a dash cam is all about ensuring your safety against unscrupulous drivers. It’s also about protecting yourself from increasing insurance premiums. So choose wisely.