As with any modern-day electronic device, comparing and contrasting systems will be a big part of your buying process. With the multitude of really great dash cameras out on the market today, finding the best dash camera system for you will take this sort of comparison shopping also, and knowing what to compare all begins with your particular use.
A dash camera system can have many uses or many combinations of uses, and the specifications offered, those you’re comparing, will have to fit those that best suit you.
For instance, a dash camera that surveils your car when you’re not around will be a bit different than the one that you use to protect yourself from insurance fraud on the road, and both of these will differ from the one that’s capturing your road trip. Here’s a good example of someone who documented their road trip on a dash cam…
Features to Consider in a Dash Cam
Before we compare dash cams, it’s important to figure out which features you base your comparison on, so here’s a checklist for you.
Image quality and recording capabilities
- Does it run both front and rear, or interior (cabin-view) cameras?
- What video resolution is available? HDR? 4K?
- Does it have a wide field of view?
- Does it support both day and night video recording? Check quality for both.
- Does it have infrared lighting for night video recording?
- Is WDR (wide dynamic range) an option?
- This is not really necessary, but is cloud storage available?
- Does it have loop recording to minimize your storage requirements?
- Does it support self-powered recording in case your power source fails?
- Does it have (G) sensors that record incidents triggered by impact when in parking mode?
- Is motion detection activated?
- How much MicroSD card storage does it support?
- Auxiliary 12-volt Power (adequate)
- Hard-wired 12-volt power (better)
- OBD-II 12-volt power (better)
- Rearview 12-volt power (better)
- Battery power
Other features to consider
- Although it’s not that necessary, wireless connectivity is an important feature for those who intend to download their recording, say, to share on their social media accounts. Built-in Wifi and Bluetooth connections make offloading and managing your videos. It also connects the dashcam to the app without any hassle.
- Built-in GPS can also help in tracking or mapping your road trips.
- When you’re parked, you may also want your dashcam to record continuously in low frame rate mode to save card space and battery with a parking monitoring feature.
Comparing Dash Camera Systems
Before deciding which dash camera system to compare against another, first figure out what you want your dash camera system to be used for, and what capabilities will best suit that use.
For instance, a dash camera system that you plan to take on a road trip to capture your driving footage will need to hold quite a bit of data, therefore you should look at storage as a priority.
An average high storage dash camera system will work with a micro SD card of around 32GB, which is good for capturing around 8 to 10 straight hours of footage.
The dash camera system that you plan to use to protect yourself from insurance fraud scams or liability in an accident won’t need to cover 8 to 10 hours of footage, usually, but it will need to take excellent photos and videos day or night, as well as automatically lock footage when a collision is detected.
Rather than focusing on storage, as you would with your road trip dash camera system, look for cameras with WDR, G sensors, looping, and high-quality lenses to suit your needs.
Comparing Road Trip Dash Cameras
Road trip dash cameras give you a pretty unique ability to capture the parts of your trip not always seen.
While you have photos and video of your stops, it’s tough taking safe video of your “go’s”, and that’s just what dash cameras give you the ability to do.
Save the scenery and your time on the road, and use this footage to piece together a really special memento that will last a lifetime.
Two great road trip dash cameras available on the market today are the KDLINKS R100 Dash Cam and the Thinkware X500 Dash Cam, priced at just under $200 and just under $280 respectively.
The more affordable of the two cameras, the KDLINKS R100, is pretty unique in its storage capabilities.
While the camera comes equipped with a smaller 16GB micro SD card (good for storing around 4 to 5 hours of footage) it’s capable of supporting up to a 128 GB micro SD card, which can capture your entire road trip and more.
On top of great storage, the camera also works in both a front cam and dual cam mode, capturing 140 degree front and rear angles at once.
Superior WDR technology allows footage to be perfect in day or night, and shuts both on and off automatically, so you don’t need to worry about adjustments or if your camera is on, you simply get to enjoy your ride.
Meanwhile the Thinkware X500 Dash Cam also uses automatic movement sensing to turn the camera on and off, and it comes with a 32GB micro SD card included and ready to use.
Like the KDLINKS R100, this dash camera system also uses front and rear footage capabilities for capturing sweeping footage angles forward and backward, but has the addition of a built-in GPS.
Another offering from the Thinkware X500 is optional parking surveillance mode that keeps watch on your vehicle even when you’re not inside.
Comparing Protection Cameras
Protection against fraud or accident liability is the main reason drivers look into comparing a dash camera system to another in the first place.
This sort of dash camera system is often stealthier and more high-tech in its image capturing when compared to those used to capture road trip footage, and there are some different specifications you should be looking for.
Two such cameras perfect for protection use are the VIOFO A119 V3 Dash Cam and the SpyTec A119 Dash Cam.
The VIOFO A119 V3 Dash Cam comes with Sony STARVIS 5MP image sensor, providing a much clearer image than most dash cameras at night. HDR function can automatically balance the lighting over bright and over dark areas, and capture clear license plates even under strong car lights at night.
The A119 V3 dashcam has a revolutionary improvement in parking mode. There are 3 solutions under the parking mode to meet different needs, Auto Event Detection, Time Lapse, and Low Bitrate Recording. When you choose Auto Event Detection, the buffered parking mode function will work automatically to record 15s before the event and 30s after the event.
Loop recording begins the dash camera’s recording as soon as your vehicle starts moving, which ensures that all relevant footage is captured regardless if you’ve remembered to start the camera or not, and G sensors lock in any footage taken when a collision is detected.
As for angles, the VIOFO A119 V3 Dash Cam captures a wide140-degree angle that prevents a fisheye view while still providing a wide view of the road.
On the other hand, the SpyTec A119 offers a few functions that the theA119 V3 dashcam does not, but the A119 V3 has its advantages in some areas.
The SpyTec A119 has superior 64GB memory capturing hours of clear HD video as well as location and speed logging with a built-in GPS.
For those who live in more extreme climates, the SpyTec A119 can withstand more extreme temperatures than the A119 V3 dash camera system, so you never need to worry if you’ve left your dash camera in the car overnight or during the heat of the day.
Both the A119 V3 and the SpyTec A119 offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee to ensure users are satisfied with their dash camera system choice.
However, if you do not like the SpyTec A119 for any reason within the first 30 days, it can be returned with no questions asked.
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