The best dash cam
A dash cam is a small camera that records your driving, creating proof of your behavior in the case of an accident. Not only does this keep you driving your best, but it can also help you prove your innocence by providing authorities with a recording of an accident. Dash cams may be designed to record in front of your vehicle or behind your vehicle and have different mounting systems. Our top pick by KDLINKS is one of the most reliable cameras on the market and stands out for its excellent night vision. To learn more about the types of dash cameras available, continue reading our buying guide.
Considerations when choosing dash cams
Multiple-lens dash cams record forward and backward so you can keep track of what's going on both in front of and inside of your car. These are popular among Lyft and Uber drivers.
Single-lens dash cams record the area in front of your vehicle. While this offers a limited view of the action, it may be enough to meet your needs. Many single-lens cameras have wide viewing angles to take in as much as possible.
Dash cams mount in different locations, with the most common being windshield-mounting and rearview-mirror-mounting. Take note of your state and local laws, as windshield-mounts may be illegal where you live.
The battery life, filming conditions, GPS functionality, and other features of dash cams can vary. Depending on your needs, some features may take priority over others.
HD video: While this is useful if you end up recording an accident, it is also a good option if you plan to create a time-lapse video of a road trip or simply capture funny moments when driving.
Some dash cams can struggle to record quality video in dark environments, but infrared-equipped models excel at filming at night or in low lighting.
GPS: A dash cam with GPS can capture information about the time and location of your car, which can be helpful when providing evidence.
Power source: Dash cams may be powered directly by your car battery or by a 12-volt outlet. If you plan to record even when your car is parked to catch vandals, you should consider a car battery-powered model.
Dash cam prices
Most basic dash cams cost from $50 to $100 and may be forward-, rear-, or interior-facing. From $100 to $250 are high-quality cameras with additional features like infrared recording and car battery compatibility.
Q. Can a dash cam work against me if I am in an accident?
A. Certainly, especially if you made an error while driving. Use your dash cam as a motivator to drive cautiously and obey traffic laws, and keep in mind that a dash cam can also protect you in the case of an event like vandalism or damage caused by nature.
Q. Is it better to plug my dash cam into a 12-volt outlet or my car battery?
A. If your dash cam is connected to your car battery, it can remain on at all times so nothing is missed. However, these require installation that you may want to have a professional perform.
Dash cams we recommend
Best of the best: KDLINKS Full-HD Dashboard Camera
Our take: The recording quality and additional features of this dash cam make it one of the best available.
What we like: This windshield-mounted dash cam records 1,080p video with a 165° field of view for excellent video quality that captures the action in front of your car. The battery is reliable even in extreme temperatures, and the inclusion of GPS puts this camera a notch above the rest.
What we dislike: The 8GB memory card quickly fills up with HD video.
Best bang for your buck: REXING Full HD Wide-Angle Dashboard Camera
Our take: The combination of a low price and excellent video recording make this one of the best deals available.
What we like: This little camera is easy to mount and provides an ultra-wide 170° angle that records excellent HD video in daylight or at night. Compatible with a range of memory cards.
What we dislike: Since the mount is adhesive, it can be difficult to remove.
Choice 3: AUSDOM AD282 Dash Cam
Our take: A low-priced camera with features that rival more expensive models.
What we like: The auto-lock feature ensures you don't miss any accidents. Multiple recording modes that are easy to customize.
What we dislike: This camera may not function well if exposed to high temperatures.
Peter McPherson is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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