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Dash cams are a wise investment.

They not only protect you from liability, but they can also be the extra eye you need on the road. Today’s article presents the models that give you features that matter. From recording high-quality footage to accurate G-sensors, our picks have everything a good dash cam requires.

In Short

If you just want the best pick, the Garmin Dash Cam 55 is our top recommendation It is not pricey, and it has features you will use on a daily basis. If you want a basic model, the Rixon V1 is the one for you. Finally, if you want the best-for-the-money option,  Roav Anker Dash Cam C1 might be a good choice

Best Dash Cams of 2019

Product Name
  • Viewing Angle
  • Video Quality
  • Memory
  • Display Size
  • Price

1. Garmin Dash Cam 55 - Best Value

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  • It is compactly built
  • Accurate G-sensors combined with safety sensors
  • It has GPS and voice control
  • Records videos at 1440p HD but can be dialed down to 1080p and 720p
  • Mounts by suction
  • Some of its versions have overheating issues
  • It has a small battery
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Are you caught in the chaos of modern driving? Chances are, that’s why you are here. Garmin, a brand known for their gadgets, including action cameras and smartwatches, brings high-quality dash cams. They have a few models in their line with the Garmin Dash Cam 55 stealing the day.

Build Quality and Performance Features

The Garmin Dash Cam 55 won’t obstruct your view. This model is only 1.5 inches wide allowing it to sit discretely when mounted on your windshield. It has one of the highest video qualities in dash cams at 1440 pixels. It can produce high-contrast and detailed images to make it easy to read road signs and number plates of vehicles near and far away from you.

With a 122-degree viewing angle, cars in front of you will not appear far away, and, at the same time, you will be able to see plenty. It also includes a polarizing filter that cuts out glare from the windscreen.

Like all the cameras in our list, this camera has G-sensors. The G-sensor turns the camera on at the start of an incident and records everything that might happen. It also includes a GPS receiver that stamps the location data on to the video. It is ideal if you want to see the exact coordinates of an incident.

Extra Features

Garmin Dash Cam 55 provides voice control such that you can control when to start and stop recording. Not only that, it has Wi-Fi connectivity. This feature, combined with the VIRB smartphone app, allows it to sync videos to your smartphone and share them on social media.

Stuff to Consider

Some users have reported this camera shutting down every few seconds due to overheating. You are advised to get the model with the 2.70 software update as it helps to prevent overdriving of the hardware and the ensuing shutdown.

Summary

Garmin Dash Cam 55 is without a doubt one of the best dash cams you can acquire for your car. From having proof of crashes to sharing what you see on social media, it is more than just an ordinary dash cam. Not to mention the driver awareness that leads to an overall safe ride.

Garmin also has the Speak Plus feature that works with Amazon Alexa. It gives you full control of your car’s system while being able to use Alexa’s useful features. You can also upgrade the Dash Cam 55 to the Dash Cam 65 with a 180-degree viewing angle.

2. Owl Car Cam - A Premium Choice with Dual Cameras

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  • Offers one year of free LTE service
  • It has 64GB of internal space
  • Can keep up to 18 hours of video
  • Provides instant alert when the car is on or in parking mode
  • Easy to install in the OBD2 scan port
  • It has a two-way speaker
  • It is pricey to acquire and use in the long run
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If you want to see the rear of your car as well as the front, the Owl Car Cam might be a good choice. It boasts a strong build and hosts a ton of features to make your commute or road trip worth your while.

Design and Performance Features

This is a cool dashcam no doubt. It stores video loops for up to 14 days to allow you to retrieve older videos without any hassle. Owl Car Cam has dual HD cameras that view the front and rear of your car. It records continuously every time the vehicle is on. You can also say OK Presto, and the cam will start to record 20-second loop videos.

The camera has a 2.4-inch touchscreen that gives you access to the settings. It can record in 1440 on the front camera while the rear camera records in 720p. You can turn off the rear camera if you don’t need the footage.

The internal storage of the Owl Car Cam is up to 64GB. It also provides for saving videos on your smartphone through the 4G LTE plan. This plan gives you instant videos of incidents such as when someone is breaking into your car when it is parked.

Extra Features

This cam gives you up to one year of unlimited alerts and services. You can save up to 60 minutes of video on the cloud. This feature is not expensive, but it becomes more affordable if you purchase a one-year plan. Since you can open the videos remotely, you can see the interior of the car when there is a break-in and even scare away the thief since as it has two-way audio.

Stuff to Consider

This is one of the more expensive dash cams on the market because of the LTE plan. It is a dash cam you want to invest in if you don’t mind the long-term expenses.

Summary

If you are a cautious driver and you don’t mind the extra expenses of this dash cam, we say go for it. It represents modernity and safety. The instant notifications are an excellent way to keep tabs on your precious car.

3. Rixon V1 - Highly Functional Budget Pick

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  • It protects G-sensor videos from being overwritten
  • Excellent customer service
  • Can be mounted via a suction cup or adhesive
  • It supports Wide Dynamic Range (WDR)
  • It operates on a wide temperature range of up to 140degrees F
  • Some users have had problems protecting videos from being overwritten
  • It does not support any form of wireless video transfer
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Don’t worry if your budget is tight. Rixon V1 dash cam is all about functionality, that’s why most drivers go for it. It is a discrete camera that resembles a small VHF radio.

Design and Performance Features

One thing you will like is that it does not take up much room on the windshield. It has a low profile that keeps it from obstructing your view. The cam boasts an IMX323 image sensor that renders high-quality and crisp images that go up to 1080p. Whether the sun is scorching or it’s late in the evening, you can make out just about anything in the 170-degree field of view.

With such a wide field of view, you can mount it almost anywhere. You can expect a full view of the road even if you mount it anywhere on your windscreen. The use of the WDR allows it to adapt to the lighting conditions, which allows you to see less black areas and more details.

The camera provides loop recordings of 3, 5, or 10-minute videos. It does not come with an SD card, but thankfully it can accommodate MicroSD cards of up to 120GBs of storage.

Rixon V1 allows for either adhesive or suction mounting. If you plan on using it on different vehicles, the suction cup will do. Contrarily, if you don’t plan on changing its location on the windscreen, the adhesive method is a good option.

Stuff to Consider

The accessories of this dash cam are not of the best quality, especially the USB cable. You may want to supply your own to prevent frustrations along the way.

Summary

Rixon V1 is a basic model suited for drivers who do not want anything fancy. It lacks GPS and voice control, which is why its price is relatively affordable. Its recorded videos are all full HD, and with the help of WDR, you are not going to miss crucial details in videos.

4. TaoTronics 2K QHD - Best for Driving at Night

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  • Affordable
  • Excellent day and night footage
  • It has G-sensors
  • Offers a parking mode
  • Can record in 2K and 1080p formats
  • Excellent audio quality owing to noise-reduction technology
  • It does not support GPS
  • SD cards can only be up to 64GB
  • It has small buttons
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Most car crashes happen at night. If you work night shifts or have to drive during the night, grab the TaoTronics 2K QHD. We’ve gotten to know this brand thanks to their auto parts. There is no doubt that this dash cam is thoughtfully-designed.

Performance Features

This dash cam allows you to record 2K videos in 30FPS. Be it footage that can be used as a proof in court, or footage of an interesting moment on the road, this dash cam promises impressive video quality. It uses a world-leading image sensor, the Ambarella ALA50, to give you ultra wide footage.

The 160-degree lens can keep track of up to five lanes even in low-lit environments. It gives you a good view of traffic so you can know where to take exits and save time in the process.

The G-sensor, which activates the recording feature, works whether the car is running or not. Thanks to the G-sensor, you don’t have to be near your vehicle to know who bumped into it.

You will like that it comes with a long 12ft power cable. It also provides extended battery life thanks to the 370mAh battery

Stuff to Consider

TaoTronics has small buttons that are annoying to press when trying to change any of the functions. It doesn’t have any extra features, which is what we would expect for the price.

Summary

It may be cheap, but its night vision properties make it one of the best dash cams. Everything about it screams convenience as it also offers a parking mode.

5. Vantrue N2 - Best for Recording Interior of Car

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  • Automatically balances light and dark areas
  • Can be switched to parking mode
  • Wide angle views on both cameras
  • Easy to set the date and time
  • Powerful image sensor for quality videos
  • Uses four infrared lights for night vision
  • Cold and heat resistant (-40 to 158F)
  • Small 1.5-inch display
  • It costs more to get GPS on this cam
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Uber, Lyft, and taxi drivers will love the Vantrue N2. It records the interior and the front of the car. If anything bad happens, you will have the necessary proof that might get you out of trouble. It also offers an excellent way to monitor passengers and see what’s happening in the back seat at all times.

Performance Features

This cam boasts high-quality videos and good night vision. The interior camera can record 1440p videos at 30FPS, or 1080p videos at 60FPS. It has one of the better refresh rates we have seen in dash cams. It explores an IMX323 Sony Exmor sensor which helps to record deep contrast and high-clarity images.

The camera mounts easily using a suction mount. You can adjust both cameras to get the view that you need. We like that it handles low light like a pro. Its four infrared lights automatically turn on when it’s dark, which prevents the recording of dark images.

Its automatic record feature starts to capture videos when it detects motion and when you turn on the ignition. Better still, glare does not keep it from giving a clear video as it also automatically shuts down the LCD to tone down on brightness.

Stuff to Consider

It is at times difficult to achieve the right recording angle since you are dealing with two cameras. It takes a few tries to get it right.

Summary

Thanks to its high video resolution, this dash cam records high-quality videos inside and on the outside of the cabin. Vantrue N2 is an excellent choice if you own a car-for-hire vehicle.

6. OldShark - Best Under $100

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  • Automatically turns on when the engine is on.
  • Can record in extreme temperatures
  • It is possible to capture videos in extremely low light
  • G-sensors automatically triggers auto-recording
  • It has a lock video feature
  • Uses either 12V or 24V power
  • It is a little tricky to perform the installation
  • ‘Mass storage’ dysfunctional message is annoying
  • Blue light when the unit is turned on cannot be turned off
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Fake accidents are not going away soon. The OldShark dash cam gives you the power to combat fake accident claims. It is an affordable pick with an auto-on/off feature, plus it can be used in extreme sub-zero temperatures without any battery issues.

Performance Features

This camera benefits from an f.16 aperture sensor. It records at 1080p at 30FPS. You will be able to see number plates of cars up to 4 meters away from you. Coupled with a 170-degree angle, nothing important will escape this dash cam. Its stability chips prevent shaky videos, which is an awesome feature for backcountry drivers.

The zinc alloy metal body absorbs vibrations, which also helps to stabilize the videos. The camera includes infrared LEDs that help to record even after dusk. It also allows you to adjust the exposure settings if the environment is extremely dark.

Its G-sensor, when activated, will trigger automatic recording of a video that cannot be overwritten unless you delete it. This dash cam also has a lock button that prevents the current video from being overwritten, enabling you to save gorgeous sightings on the road.

Stuff to Consider

The microphone is a nice touch, but it has background noise that you may find annoying. The wiring is also a bit tacky for novice installers so you may need a little help.

Summary

OldShark is one of the dash cams that has been on the market for quite some time. It is convenient, and it does its job pretty well. Its accident-detecting feature and high-quality recordings make it a must-have for every car and truck driver.

7. Papago GoSafe 535 - Most Versatile of All

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  • It records quality videos with clear audio
  • Wide 160-degree viewing angle
  • Comes with an OTG cable for uploading videos
  • Receives a lifetime of upgrades
  • It has three recording modes
  • Can be mounted using an adhesive or suction
  • Safety alerts are not accurate
  • Sharing of videos works only with Android smartphones
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It is not the most affordable on the list, but every feature presented by the Papago GoSafe 535 is worth every dime. You will find that it is a compact model that can sync videos on your Android phone.

Performance Features

With a 1296 Super HD resolution, you have a good idea of the type of videos you will be getting with this dash cam. You have three recording modes including the automatic mode, looping, and monitor mode. In the monitor mode, this camera will take photos, which is crucial in saving storage space. This means you get more storage to record the critical moments when they happen. It comes with a free 8GB micro SD card. It can also accept up to 64GB of footage, which translates into 8 hours of footage.

You will like the OTG cable provided since you can automatically share videos or send them to your email. It does all of the mentioned via the CAM ON app, which you can download from the Google Play store on your Android smartphone. This way, memorable moments will not be lost when it is in loop mode.

Better still, Papago GoSafe 535 gets you into their lifetime updates which means it is the only dash cam you will need for a very long time.

Stuff to Consider

Papago GoSafe 535 has a ton of safety alerts. They are nowhere near what you get with the latest modernized cars. That said, it triggers alarms even without a cause. But you can always turn off the safety features function if you find it annoying.

Summary

Papago GoSafe 535 is reasonably priced considering the features it brings. You get great videos, and it is easy to use and tailor to your needs. Most drivers agree the quick startup and the ability to share videos makes it a top pick for most needs.

8. Roav Anker Dash Cam C1 - Best for the Money

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  • Captures every detail owing to the 2K resolution
  • It supports GPS and Wi-Fi connectivity
  • It has a one-year warranty
  • It uses superior imaging technology for balanced videos
  • Provides up to 4 lane panoramic views
  • Comes with a 32GB micro SD card
  • It’s difficult to remove the adhesive mount
  • The audio announcements when the camera turns on are annoying
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Roav Anker Dash Cam C1 boasts lots of features that have made it popular among online folks. You will find that it gives life-like imagery and memorable recording not seen in many dash cams.

Performance Features

What can 2K do for you? There’s a whole lot of difference in dash cams that record in 1080p and 2K HD. The image clarity is astounding. It makes you feel like you are watching something recorded using personalized hand controls. And because it supports Wide Dynamic Range, it automatically adjusts to the lighting for balanced footage.

It is nice to see an expansive view since this camera can record up to four lanes of the road. Not only that, it has a GPS receiver, and it also allows instant access to videos via Wi-Fi.

Even when the car is parked, the camera will still detect motion and record footage when someone backs into your vehicle in the parking lot.

Stuff to Consider

It is unfortunate that this dash cam doesn’t come with a night vision feature. Also, it is not built to withstand extreme temperatures below -40F. The battery may not function in such conditions.

Summary

Considering all the features that come with the Roav Anker Dash Cam C, it is easy to see why most drivers love it. The GPS tracking and being able to connect over Wi-Fi are some of the additional specs that allow it to cost more.

9. BlackVue DR490-2CH - Most Convenient

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  • Settings can be changed on Windows and Mac
  • It has a secure way of managing and naming files
  • Supports night vision recording
  • Offers extra features with proximity warnings
  • Incredible image quality day and night
  • It does not come with a battery pack and an SD card
  • It does not have a display
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We say it is the most convenient dash cam because it is easy to get to a video you want. This is because it marks videos intuitively, so you don’t have to watch all of them to get to the one you want.

 Performance Features

This is a dual dash cam with two full HD cameras. It can record the front and rear of the vehicle in 1080p at 30FPS. It even has a night vision mode which can quickly be turned on for after dark recordings. The Sony STARVIS™ imaging sensor has a 130-degree field of view so you can see what’s relevant and not too far off.

It follows through with an automatic G-sensor that allows automatic recording of videos. It includes safety features that tell you when you suddenly change the speed and when you ride too close to the car in front of you.

We like that this dash cam manages footage in a sophisticated manner to eliminate the need to format the card. It keeps files from being corrupted every time it starts to overwrite. It categorizes the footage into normal, event, or parking, to make it easy for you to find what you need.

Stuff to Consider

If you want this camera to record in the parking mode, it will require the Power Magic Battery Pack. Also, you have to turn on the night vision mode manually otherwise you are left with dark images.

Summary

BlackVue DDR490-2CH is an easy-to-use and versatile model. Although it lacks a screen, it makes it up with good quality videos that are amazing for the price.

10. THINKWARE F770 - Best Wi-Fi-Enabled Dash Cam

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  • GPS and Wi-Fi support
  • Powerful Sony CMOS sensor
  • It supports night vision
  • Provides a way of backing up your files
  • It has red light and speed camera alerts
  • It does not support SD cards from other brands
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The THINKWARE F770 is so small that it won’t take up a lot of space in your car. It sits neatly and in sync with the interiors of any car.

Performance Features

THINKWARE F770 is another dash cam that does not have a display. Luckily, it is Wi-Fi enabled so you can view recordings on the iOS and Android app. With the help of a 2.19MP CMOS Sony Exmor image sensor, it boasts superior imagery close to what you get with some DSLR cameras.

It has a night vision feature for dark tunnels and low light conditions. The F770 is highly sensitive to light and competes with TaoTronics on the same level. The time lapse feature comes into play for the parking mode since it can condense recordings saving you space.

Don’t worry about losing crucial footage. This dash cam backs up incident videos into its interior storage. The camera also supports GPS, and it has red light and speed alerts to give you a safe ride each time.

Stuff to Consider

Unfortunately, this dash cam only uses THINKWARE SD cards. If you don’t have means of getting the mentioned cards and also don’t want to keep saving important files on your computer, you’ll want to avoid this model.

Summary

Owning the THINKWARE F770 is a great choice thanks to its superior quality videos, GPS, dual save, and safety features. This dash cam works in extreme temperatures and backs up important videos, but it only uses THINKWARE SD cards, which tend to be expensive.


Useful Info About Dash Cams

We all know that today’s roads are a messy place, to say the least. You never know when you will need a dash cam. They are vital for proving whose fault an accident was. They are also important while you are not in the car. Passerbys may damage your car, and some shady mechanics might try to claim more money from you. Dash cams are a good way to avoid unnecessary hassle with the law.

There are way too many dash cams on the market, and most of them should be avoided. Knowing which ones are worth the money is not an easy task. Fortunately, we are here to show you that finding a good dash cam doesn’t have to be hard. We have done our part, our research is in front of you, so you don’t have to waste your time scouring the Internet.

Types of Dash Cams

There is no official classification of dash cams, but we have categorized them for you. This way, you will have better chances of finding a dash cam that meets your expectations.

  • Exterior view: These dash cams are used to record the exterior of your vehicle. Dash cams that can record only the front of your vehicle are known as single-lens dash cams. They are the most common ones, but there are some that can also record the rear of your vehicle. Those dash cams come with two lenses, and most of the time the videos they record are in the picture-in-picture mode.
  • Taxicams: Taxi, Uber, and Lyft drivers typically use this type of a dash cam. Taxicams allow you to record everything that happens inside of your vehicle. They are a good choice if you have children who use your vehicle. Bear in mind that some taxicams come with two lenses, which allow you to record both the inside of your vehicle, as well as in front of it.

You should know that good dash cams with two lenses can be adjusted to record whatever you want. But, make sure that the model you want to buy allows you to make adjustments.

Are There Any Discreet Dash Cams?

If you want to hide your dash cam out of the view of other people, you will be glad to know that you can do it.

Plenty of dash cams are created to be small and discreet. You can easily tuck them out of sight, and they will still perform their task. Most of them can be attached to the rearview mirror, which most of the people won’t notice.

Bear in mind that discreet dash cams are usually tiny, so you can’t expect a screen on them.

Important Features to Consider

Now that you have chosen a type of a dash cam, you need to know which features are useful. Not all of the features on our list are a must-have, but it is good to keep them in mind.

  • Resolution: The most important feature is the resolution of the video recording. While 720p is not bad per se, it is smarter to choose a higher resolution. Our advice is to go for 1080p since it is enough to capture all of the important details. But, if you want a higher resolution, you can easily go for a 2160p camera. If you want only the best, then you should go for the 4K resolution.
  • Field of view: Field of view tells you how wide the camera can see. Some dash cams come with a narrow field of view, which isn’t the best option. On the other hand, some cameras have a very wide field of view, which can distort the video. Our advice is to get a dash cam that offers a viewing angle of at least 122 degrees. Everything above the 170-degree view angle is a bit too much.
  • Frame rate: A frame rate of a dash cam tells you how many frames there are in one second of a video. Basically, greater frame rates offer you a more fluid video. Our advice is to never go lower than 25 frames per second. Always try to go for at least 30 frames per second. Some dash cams offer video recording at 60 frames per second, which is too much. 60 frames per second videos take up a lot of storage space, which might leave you with no storage space when you need it the most.
  • Night vision: If you tend to drive during the night a lot, then a night vision dash cam is what you need. The video footage won’t look as colorful as it would during the day, but at least you will be able to see more than enough.
  • GPS: Some dash cams allow you to record your location, as well as your speed. If that feature sounds good to you, then you need a dash cam with GPS connectivity. Dash cams with GPS are used by truckers and workers who need to know the length of their drive.
  • Storage: Never skimp on storage. The more storage your dash cam has, the longer it can record. Some of the dash cams offer 4GB or 8GB of storage, but we don’t consider it enough. Some dash cams come with a MicroSD card slot that gives you even more storage space. You can use your MicroSD card to boost the storage capacity of your dash cam. If you choose to use your MicroSD card, make sure that it comes with at least 64GB of storage.
  • G-sensor: A gravity sensor is an advanced feature, and not many dash cams have it, but it is useful. The G-sensor activates the camera when you are involved in a crash. The footage recorded by the activated G-sensor can’t be overwritten or deleted. If you want to secure your footage, a G-sensor is a useful feature to think about.
  • Audio recording: Sometimes the video evidence simply isn’t enough. This is where dash cams with audio recording prove their usefulness. The downsides are that video with audio takes up more storage space and that audio dash cams tend to be pricey.
  • Built-in display: Some dash cams come with a built-in display that allows you to review footage, tweak the controls, and more. You can expect the size of the built-in display to be between 2” and 3”. The quality of the video played on the display won’t be great, but it will be more than enough for review purposes.
  • Battery: Most of the dash cams use your vehicle’s power to run. But, some of them have a built-in battery. Dash cams with a built-in battery are useful if you want the cam to keep recording even while your vehicle is not running. Bear in mind that batteries in dash cam can’t keep the camera running for a long time.
  • Wireless connectivity: Good dash cams allow you to connect to them via Wi-Fi and/or Bluetooth. This is a great feature if you want to set up your dash cam on your phone. You can also manage your footage and upload it to the cloud.
  • Navigation: If you don’t have a navigation device, a dash cam could fill its place. Good dash cams allow you to enter a location to which they will guide you. You can focus on driving while your dash cam shows you and tells you where to go. Even if you own a navigation device, you might want to think about a dash cam with navigation. It is better to have one device that does everything than to clutter your vehicle with many gadgets and accessories.