Here is our in-depth guide to the best dash cams you can buy today. In this buying guide, you’ll find the best car cameras on the market no matter your budget or vehicle type.
Which is the best dash cam you can buy right now? It shoots crisp 4K video, has excellent stabilization, and is very easy to use thanks to its 3-inch touchscreen. It’s not necessarily the best option for you, so read on to discover the very best dash cams for every type of driver.
Also, you might be wondering why you should buy a dash cam in the first place. These windscreen-mounted cameras capture everything that happens when you’re driving.
Top 5 Bestseller Dash Cam
In addition to providing peace of mind, they can also help lower your insurance premiums. Likewise, clips of unexpected moments on the road can be great content for your YouTube channel.
Hopefully, a dash cam will only record minor mishaps, but it might prove invaluable in the event of an accident. Especially with roads getting increasingly congested again, it’s well worth investing in the best dash cam you can afford.
Top 8 Best Dash Cam Reviews
Nextbase UHD Recording in Car DVR Camera
- FANTASTIC VIDEO QUALITY AND EXPERIENCE: Ultra-clear 4K recording at 30fps to capture those finer details or number plate and produce stunning results. Optional recording of 1440p HD at 60fps and 1080p HD at 120fps is also available. Your rear camera module can still record in full HD quality of 1080p at 30fps, covering your car from multiple angles and giving you greater peace of mind. FRONT AND REAR RECORDINGS: When connected to the 622GW model, 4K front camera and 1080p rear.
- EXACT LOCATION RECOVERY: what3words integration provides your precise global location, even when you are offline, to help the emergency services or friends locate you quickly. It is embedded into the 622GW, meaning that even if you do run out of data, you are safe in the knowledge that you can still make that call and give your location.
- IMAGE STABALISATION: The 622GW reduces vibrations from your vehicle and improves footage clarity to ensure a super smooth, crystal clear image. This allows you to see finer details such as number plates, signs, and crucial details. Also, super-slow-motion feature allows you to view your footage in slow motion to see all the critical details.
Rather than replace the more affordable 522GW (see below), the 622GW is simply a new flagship dash cam. The new version offers much better video quality, improved stabilization, and what3words geolocation services, which allow the location of a victim vehicle within a three-meter radius.
Even in poor lighting conditions, the resulting footage looks like a cinematic presentation, with excellent definition and details, even in 4K. As a result, it is much easier to pinpoint registration numbers and discover hard-to-see elements of accidents.
There is a polarizing filter on the front of the camera that can be rotated to reduce glare from windscreens, and there is also digital image stabilization, which helps smooth out bumps and shakes caused by potholes and poor road conditions.
With Alexa Skills, this model can also be controlled via voice, but it requires the accompanying smartphone app to work, which isn’t ideal. Despite dual 2.4GHz and 5GHz Wi-Fi, it still has trouble connecting to phones to transfer images and video clips.
Thankfully, the 3-inch rear touchscreen is crisp, clear, and easy to use, and the addition of What3Words combines well with Nextbase’s EmergencySOS, for which you get a free year’s subscription. There are also currently discounts available on Nextbase’s own insurance for UK customers.
- Alexa and what3words built-in
- Superb video quality
- Requires large capacity SD card
- Poor smartphone app
Nextbase 522GW Dash Cam Front and Rear Camera Small
- NEXTBASE FRONT & REAR WINDOW CAMERA: The Nextbase Rear Window Camera fits directly into your rear window via a wired connection to your front Nextbase Series 2 Dash Cam (322GW, 422GW and522GW). It uses a 140-degree viewing angle to capture events on the road behind you as you drive. It can easily be installed in any vehicle's rear window with an easy to install self-adhesive pad and neodymium magnets to be used at any angle.
- EMERGENCY SOS: In the event of an incident where the driver is unresponsive, Nextbase Emergency SOS can alert the emergency service of your location and other details. The emergency alert that is sent to the integrator and emergency services includes GPS location and heading as standard, but also other personal details such as medical history, blood type and allergies.
- ALEXA COMPATIBLE: The world's first 1440p Dash Cam with Alexa built-in. You can use Alexa to play music, place calls, listen to audiobooks, hear the news, check the weather, control smart home devices, get directions, find parking, and more - all while you keep your hands on the wheel and eyes on the road.
The Nextbase 622GW flagship (above) is one of the most advanced dash cams available, but the 522GW remains our top pick for value. Featuring a 1440p resolution and wide-angle lens, it does the basics very well, but also offers a variety of additional features.
The back of the device features a three-inch touchscreen, as well as the ability to use Alexa. Currently, Alexa can play music, make calls, and listen to audiobooks using connected devices, but in the upcoming Dash Cam Skill, users will be able to command it to record, stop recording, protect a recording, and send it to their phones.
This might seem like a bit of a gimmick and, to be honest, we didn’t use it all that much, so it’s good that the UX is so simple. With Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, you can easily share videos to a smart device, while the Emergency SOS system will alert the emergency services if you are unresponsive after an accident.
- Amazon Alexa built-in
- Much cheaper than 622GW
- The footage isn’t class-leading
- No SD card included
VIOFO A129 Pro Duo 4K Dual Dash Cam Rear Car WiFi
- 【Ultra HD Real 4K Dual Channel】 Dash cam A129 Pro Duo adopt top quality Sony 8MP IMX317 Sensor on front camera and rear camera with Sony IMX 291 sensor , this dual dash cam captures super clear view at Ultra HD 4K 3840 * 2160 @30fps /2K 1440 * 1080P @60fps at the same time. 4K resolution offer amazing video quality, four time higher than a regular FHD. Help you read most details from street signs, license plate etc. Give you peace of mind when you're driving
- 【Upgraded Super Night Vision & WDR】8MP sensor, combine with upgraded 7-Glass F1.8 aperture lens and WDR technology, provide a much clearer image than most dash cameras at night, maintain sharp image and automatically balance the lighting at over bright and over dark area. A car recorder that can be used with peace of mind from day to night
- 【Advanced Parking Mode】Car camera A129 Pro Duo will record and lock 15 seconds video before the event and 30 seconds after an impact / motion, This is an excellent feature and completes a true parking mode as there can be a lot of vital information in the lead-up to whatever triggered recording（using VIOFO HK3 hardwire cable kit, sold separately, asin: B07JQ1JYPJ）
Viofo isn’t the most well-known name in dash cams, but its 4K resolution Pro Duo model represents tremendous value for money, even if you haven’t heard of it before.
Although the front camera is quite a bit bulkier than some rivals, it comes with a built-in GPS module, something many other brands offer as an optional extra.
Its plastic casing looks and feels basic, but it contains a lot of interesting technology that belies its overall build quality.
It uses supercapacitors rather than traditional rechargeable batteries, which means its power source is designed to last and can withstand extreme temperatures without losing performance. In addition, you will be able to record 4K (3840 x 2160p) video up front, providing a lot of details in all weather conditions and a Wide Dynamic Range for rich colors.
4K recording is only possible at 30fps, which isn’t the best if you want to slow down footage. Dual recording (front and rear) is only available at full HD (1080p) and this is pumped out at 60fps for smoother results.
Viofo’s smartphone app makes it easy to review and save clips. Installation of dual cameras requires the removal of interior trim and the clever concealment of long wires. Getting it right can be a messy and infuriating process, but it is worth it to avoid a tangle of power cables.
If you travel a lot and want total coverage without spending a small fortune, this package, which includes night vision, a parking mode, motion detection, automatic emergency recording, GPS tracking, and dual-channel 1080p, is well worth considering.
- Great value for a front/rear cam
- Crisp footage
- Lots of trailing wires
- Relatively bulky front camera unit
Garmin Front and Rear Dual-lens Dash Camera
- Pocket-size dash camera features two 180-degree field of view lenses that record in tandem to provide complete video coverage around the driver
- 1440p Garmin Clarity HDR records crisp video details; 720p interior-facing lens with night vision featuring our exclusive NightGlo technology captures clear video of all passengers at night
- Features voice control and built-in GPS to automatically capture where and when events occur, plus built-in Wi-Fi connectivity lets you view and share video on your smartphone by using the Garmin Drive smartphone app
The first dual-lens dash cam from Garmin lets you see what’s going on both inside and outside the car while driving, which is handy for taxi drivers and people who want to keep an eye on their passengers.
Dash Cam Tandem is extremely compact in design and comes with a magnetic mount that can easily be installed below the rear-view mirror and removed when not in use.
There are two USB cables included (the longer one allows you to run the cable around the cabin neatly), as well as a cigarette lighter USB socket with two ports for charging two phones at once. If, however, you want to use the dash cam for incident recording – for example, if your car gets bumped in a parking lot while you are shopping – you will need to have it professionally installed so that it’s constantly recording.
You can review video and audio footage from your drives without having to remove the MicroSD card from the camera thanks to the Garmin Drive app (Android and iOS). The front-facing camera takes excellent pictures. The rear camera struggles a bit in low light, but you can still make out passengers in black and white. There is also a picture-in-picture option so you can view both front- and rear-facing footage simultaneously.
The footage is displayed with a timestamp, the speed of the vehicle, and the location. Voice control is also available, enabling hands-free control with instructions such as ‘OK Garmin, take a picture or ‘OK Garmin, save video’. Safety cam alert updates will soon be made available on the app.
The only slight problem we encountered was that the app wasn’t as intuitive as we would’ve liked, and it didn’t automatically connect to the Wi-Fi connection when viewing footage from our drives. In addition to that, it is an excellent option for those who want to keep an eye on their car, both inside and out.
- Compact unit
- Versatile dual-lens design
- Low-quality night vision
- Garmin app isn’t the best
Garmin Car Key-Sized Dash Cam
- Tiny, reliable dash camera automatically records incidents
- Car key-sized dash camera goes virtually unnoticed on your windshield
- 140-Degree wide-angle lens captures crisp 1080P HD footage
Garmin’s original Dash Cam Mini is hassle-free and hidden. We are currently testing the Dash Cam Mini 2, though it only adds small upgrades such as voice control and remote live view. With the low-profile mount, both compact cameras disappear behind the rear view mirror, so you can focus on the road. If you run the length of the two USB cables behind your cabin’s headlining, you’ll soon forget it’s there.
The Dash Cam Mini has just two buttons: one to muffle the microphone, the other to save clips on the go – and no display for framing footage. Instead, download the Garmin Drive App on your smartphone, connect to the Mini’s built-in Wi-Fi, and view a live preview feed while you adjust its position.
Using the app, you can also review, edit, and export footage, making it easy to get footage off the camera. There are also settings you can tweak, including data overlay and video quality (which can be reduced to 720p), as well as remote control of the dash cam. The setup is simple and reliable, and if you don’t want to sit in your car while sorting clips, you can pop the camera off its mount and power it with the spare USB cable.
Once installed, the Dash Cam Mini records continuously, looping over the microSD card. Even though it doesn’t offer the high resolution of some rivals, its Full HD footage is still bright and detailed, and its exposure adapts well to various lighting conditions. The 140-degree viewing angle provides a wide view ahead without fish-eye distortion.
There are some compromises: there’s no GPS or night mode, and you’ll have to purchase and install a separate cable for parking surveillance. Although incident detection saves footage automatically, it missed a couple of heavy braking events. As a subtle, uncomplicated and affordable solution, the Dash Cam Mini checks a lot of boxes.
- Simple to install and use
- Wi-Fi connectivity
- No GPS tracking
- No built-in display
Kenwood – DRV-A601W 4K Dash Cam
- Allows capturing sharp, high-definition footage at 30 fps.
- Provides expansive shooting coverage with minimal edge-to-edge distortion.
- This is a smartphone app for displaying video recorded with this device. Simply access the iTunes App Store or Google Play Store to download.
Kenwood’s DRV-A601W does everything you ask of it, and does it well, without including any of the annoying features that modern units attempt to lure customers with, such as lane keeping assist warnings and speed limit alerts.
It’s possible to get incredibly crisp and clear images even in adverse weather conditions or low-light conditions with the addition of a removable polarizing filter and HDR technology.
On the other hand, the DRV-A601W is expensive; similarly priced rivals offer similar video quality with added features, such as the Emergency SOS geo-location service found on the Nextbase 622GW.
The company also touts its rearview camera, which offers great HD quality to catch rear-end collisions and the like, as well as its hard-wiring kit that allows the camera to draw power when the ignition is off without draining the vehicle’s battery. In addition to providing parking surveillance opportunities, this circumvents modern engine stop/start technology that often cuts power to cameras and records.
This extra equipment can be pricey, but there are models such as the new Viofo A139 that offer a perfectly good three-camera setup for the same price as the Kenwood’s front camera. While it can’t compete on video quality, there are options if you want all-round coverage on a budget.
- Great video quality
- Neat compact package
- Easy to set up and use
- Low on features
- Additional extras quickly add up
BlackVue DR900X 4K UHD Cloud Dashcam
- Front cam: 8 megapixels sensor / 4K Ultra High Definition (3840×2160 @30FPS) / View angle: 162 degrees. Rear cam: 2.1 megapixels STARVIS sensor / Full HD (1920×1080 @30FPS) / View angle: 139 degrees.
- High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC/H.265) is the standard in 4K video broadcasting and streaming. With HEVC, you get great-looking 4K videos but same recording time as a regular Full HD dashcam.
- DR900X Series can be hardwired to your vehicle’s fuse panel for Parking Mode, without requiring optional accessories. The dashcam will switch to Parking Mode automatically when vehicle ignition is turned off. Voltage cutoff and timer can be set in the BlackVue App.
For drivers who put in a lot of mileage on a regular basis, braving all types of roads and conditions, a dashcam may be worth the extra cost. While we don’t suggest the camera needs a lot of fancy gizmos and superfluous tech, spending more does improve image quality.
This is very useful in the case of an accident, especially in a hit-and-run situation, when reading a number plate from a distance and spotting distinctive features can mean the difference between catching a perpetrator or facing a hefty insurance claim.
BlackVue’s dash cam package is a premium product that includes a front- and rear-facing camera, both of which record in high definition.
The price might seem outrageous for a dash cam, but this is the only dash cam with an 8MP CMOS sensor upfront and a high-performance Sony STARVIS CMOS sensor in the rear. Due to this, the footage is undeniably the best on the market, day or night.
The 162-degree field of view feels ideal for the task at hand and gets rid of the fisheye effect that some wider-angle cameras exhibit.
Those who are paranoid can also use BlackVue’s advanced intelligent park mode, which continuously records when the vehicle is turned off. Thanks to the Power Magic Pro, which is wired into the vehicle’s battery, the dash cam doesn’t deplete reserves when it is recording overnight.
All of the obvious features will be present, including GPS, incident detection, and the capacity to send clips to BlackVue’s smartphone app via the onboard Wi-Fi.
Alternatively, users can utilize BlackVue’s over-the-cloud storage option or remotely check in on a parked vehicle (via the app) and view real-time footage.
- Superb image quality
- Beautifully designed unit
- Price tag is now a bit steep
- Irritating to install
Vantrue N2 Pro Uber Dual Front Dash Cam
- 【Dual Lens 1080P Car Camera】Best dual dash cam for uber, rideshare, lyft drivers, picked by Wirecutter, CNET, Businessinsider, BGR etc. The front and inside camera simultaneously capture the road front (170°) and inside passenger cabin (140°) in crystal details at dual 1920x1080P 30fps, which is a great option for rideshare drivers that will need photographic evidence in the event some rowdy passengers do damage to their car.
- 【Single Front 2.5K 1440P Dash Cam】When recording in front-only mode, footage is captured at at 2.5K [email protected], which enables clear license plates, road signs. Or you can switch to [email protected] mode with smoother videos for high speed traffic.
- 【Infrared Night Vision w/Sony Sensor】The interior facing camera utilizes a Sony sensor, 4 IR LED lights and f/2.0 aperture, which can handle low light conditions and ensures flawless video footage even when the passenger cabin is dark. F/1.8 6-glass lens front facing cam and unique HDR video system automatically balance the light and dark areas of the video.
The number of search results that appear when you type ‘dash cam’ into Amazon can be overwhelming. Despite the abundance of dash cams on the market, there is one Chinese brand that offers professional spec dash cams for half the price of some of the market leaders.
The most important lens here is the front lens, which is composed of six glass elements and boasts an aperture of f/1.8, which makes it ideal for capturing crisp images in low light.
Furthermore, another f/2 lens faces the cabin and is assisted by four IR LEDs to enhance what is often gloomy footage via the excellent Sony IMX323 sensor. This sort of functionality is ideal for professional drivers who may or may not want to relive any incidents that occur late on a Friday night. The device also has a built-in microphone.
A continuous loop recording is a given here, as is the G-sensor technology that detects an incident and automatically saves the footage. Nevertheless, buyers will need to purchase an optional GPS mount that stores speed and location data along with the video files.
The image quality is generally very good thanks to the brilliant Sony sensor, and connecting the device to a laptop or PC is a simple process. The front and back footage are also divided into two separate files, reducing the time spent browsing through the various folders for the desired clip.
At this price point, the Parking Mode offers good value as well, as it can be set to automatically record whenever movement is detected. It requires a power source, so it must either be hard-wired into the vehicle or attached to an external power source.
- Top-quality sensor
- Ultra-wide viewing angle
- No GPS tracking
- Second camera films cabin, not rear view
How To Pick The Best Dash Cam For You
Dash cams generally have similar technology and are mounted somewhere along with the windshield or windscreen of a car. The dash cam must not block your view of the road, regardless of where you place it.
Rear-facing cameras (or complete kits that include both front and rear cameras) may require a little more installation since cables are often routed from front to back. Fitting them correctly will involve some fiddly work involving the car’s headliner.
Dash cams capture short segments of footage, usually up to two minutes at a time. To prevent the memory card from filling up, the cameras continually record over the oldest clips.
Older models required the user to manually save or tag the appropriate clip following an accident, but new G-Sensor-based incident detection technology takes care of this automatically.
Additionally, there are dash cams with additional features that, like any other technology, are more expensive.
These features may include multiple cameras for both fronts and rear-facing coverage, along with a more refined sensor for better video quality. For example, some cameras record only 720p HD footage, while others record Full HD (1080p) and 4K. In addition to night vision and built-in Wi-Fi or Bluetooth for easy file transfer, the camera may also feature night vision.
Increasingly popular voice-activated technologies have made their way to the humble dash cam, so expect Alexa integration and other such voice-activated technology at the top of the range.
Numerous parking modes are also available. They use a time-lapse feature to capture details of those annoying car park prangs while you’re out running errands.