All vehicle drivers know it – a crash can happen anytime. As frightening as it may tend to be, it is as distressing to be actually blamed as guilty for a crash that is not really your fault. This is the reason why a road scout dash cam can prove to be a critical aid, just in case the unexpected happens.
The market of dashboard cameras is fast changing, with vendors hopping into the 4K-resolution game. It does not mean, however, that only these models gain the upper hand. In fact, there are a lot of other options out there.
To help you make a wise purchasing decision, we have gathered the top 10 road scout dash cam options, along with some recommendations on how to choose the best one for your needs and preferences.
Reviews for the Best Road Scout Dash Cam in 2020
1. Nextbase 522GW Dash Cam
The Best Road Scout Dash Cam
- The Nextbase 522GW Dash cam is a model that sticks right into your windshield, automatically recording video footage while you drive your vehicle. It is one of the larger cams in this list, which is not really a bad thing, though it means that it can be noticed easily by others who will look into your windshield.
- The lens of this dash cam sticks from the body a bit. The front edge of the lens comes with an adjustable polarizing filter ring, which can be turned to reduce glare from the dashboard.
- It also has a USB port, which can be used to connect the dashboard camera to your computer so as to transfer video files.
2. Garmin Dash Cam Tandem
Best Front/Rear Dash Cam
- Garmin is one of the popular dash cam manufacturers. This model is a pocket-sized and single unit dash cam that features lens on the front and back. Among its features include a built-in GPS. This dash cam uses voice commands or commands that are routed through your phone rather than on a built-in screen.
- This dash cam is designed especially with an eye focused on rideshare drivers, along with its interior focusing the camera. The front camera records either 1080p or 1440p, while the rear camera records at a fixed 720p.
- With its clarity HDR feature, it can surprisingly capture clear exterior video, though the interior video capture also works amazingly. It uses NighGlo technology that offers exceptionally clear footages at night in black and white.
3. Garmin Dash Cam 66W
Effortless to Use Dash Cam
- Another Garmin entry in this list is the Garmin Dash Cam 66W. It comes in a compact design, offering features such as intuitive driver assistance and good video quality.
- This matchbox-sized dash cam can be neatly hidden behind the middle rearview mirror of your vehicle. It comes with four buttons on a side for menu navigation, a micro USB port for power on another side, a 2-inch display on the back, and a microSD card slot beneath.
- A bonus feature of this model is its ball-and-socket connection for its universal windscreen mount. It is a well-engineered system that consumes very little space, allowing for adjustments in any direction.
4. Thinkware TW-F770 Full HD 1080p Dash Cam
Features On-board Wi-Fi
- The F770 model is the flagship dash cam under the Thinkware brand. In terms of shooting specifications, this model features a Sony Exmor CMOS. It also comes with a 2.19-megapixel resolution, with a sensor that is ½.9 inch in size. It does not come with Super HD resolution but showcases a Full HD 1080p at 30 frames per second.
- The video footage is recorded at 9.5 Mbps bitrate at its front-facing camera. On the other hand, if the rear camera is attached, it can capture an 8Mbps footage, with the addition of mono audio.
- The footage is saved into a microSD card with an option to choose between 16GB and 32GB. Regardless of the selection, this dash cam will loop, which means that it will overwrite the oldest files unless they have been specifically tagged as an incident.
5. Vantrue N2 Pro Uber Dual Dash Cam
Best for Taxi and Rideshare Drivers
- This dash cam features 2.5k resolution, with a wide 170-degree field of view. It also features infrared lights for the rear camera and a cab-facing camera. In fact, it is one of the few models of dash cams that come with a cab-facing camera that records both the driver and the passengers, aside from a camera that faces the road.
- These camera capabilities result in extremely clear footage, which looks like they come from the latest models of smartphones. The colors produced are also vibrant, making the captured footage worth posting online.
- Its unique cab-facing camera also offers both audio and video of the driver and the passengers, which is very useful for a taxi or rideshare drivers.
6. VIOFO A129 Pro Duo 4K Dual Dash Cam
Best Recording Quality
- In terms of design, the A129 is bigger, possibly due to its built-in cooling system. Its front camera has a lens with an 8.29MP Sony Exmor R Starvis image sensor. This delivers clear video quality of 4K UHD at 30 FPS. UHD is 4x much clearer than 1080p Full HD, with a video recording quality that is a good upgrade.
- Other amazing features of this dash cam includes the Super Night Vision, and the Wide Dynamic Range (WDR), offering a good coverage with both day and night footages.
- It also does well with dark environments to make sure that the videos are of the highest quality at daytime, while having great definition and minimal blurring and noise at night.
7. PAPAGO! GoSafe S810 Sony Sensor Dash Cam
Dual Channel Coverage
8. Garmin Dash Cam Mini
Best Mini Dash Cam
- This camera duo comes with amazing safety features, including a stop sign recognition. This means that it recognizes stop signs, popping the digital equivalent on display.
- It takes good quality day and night footages, with a rear camera that captures enough detail to make it useful despite being a mini dash cam.
- This dash cam comes with a nice and bright 2.4-inch display. The four control buttons are placed on the lower part of the cam. The function is hinted by icons above them. Overall, it is very easy to use.
9. Vantrue T2 24/7 Recording Dash Cam
Ideal for Extreme Temperatures
- The Vantrue T2 dash cam is a tube-shaped unit that falls under the mid-range price point category. It is designed to serve as a 24/7 surveillance supercapacitor camera, which means that it has the capacity to hold up even in extreme conditions of weather.
- Its supercapacitor battery can work in cold temperatures up to -4 degrees Fahrenheit and in hot temperatures up to 158 degrees Fahrenheit. It also features an OBD power mode, which uses less power compared with other power sources, thus easing the strain of your car battery.
- This cam also features both front and an interior view, allowing you to see the inside and the front of your car. The cameras come in one unit, which means that you cannot record rear footages unless a separate camera is available.
10. VAVA Dash Cam 2K Wi-Fi Car Dashboard Cam
Good Value Car Dash Cam
- This dash cam comes with an interesting hockey puck design that is both functional and eye-catching. It has a windshield mount that utilizes a suction cup that has some stickiness to it, making it secure without being extremely difficult to remove. It does not leave any residue as well.
- This unit also features an extra-long power wire, allowing it to be tucked easily under the headliner of your car, hiding some trim pieces away from sight. Its L-shaped micro-USB connector makes the running of the wire relatively easier.
- The selling point of this dash cam is its 1440p recording capacity, allowing it to shoot both 1080p30 and 1080p60.
In our modern times, a dash cam is more than a luxury purchase that captures amazing footages on the road. In fact, it is designed to provide a valid proof for insurance claims. They can even pinpoint perpetrators who commit criminal offenses against you, or with other people.
One thing to note is that all dash cam models come with their pros and cons. It is even hard to tell whether one is better than another because, at the end of the day, it depends on what you actually need. When it comes to choosing the best for your requirements, the following are the most important considerations that you need to make:
Among the items in this list, this factor is the most important. The minimum requirement that you would want to consider is an HD 720p recording. This will make sure that the footage captured is sharp enough to clearly see license plates, faces, and the vehicle makes and models. This is but the minimum, as there are also options on models with HD 1080p and 2K resolutions. The trade-off, however, is that you will also get bigger video files.
Another important feature is the night vision. Needless to say, it is crucial since not all accidents happen in the daytime. City lights, headlights, and streetlights may, at times, offer enough illumination, but those lights may not be present in a certain area. Not having the night vision is quite risky.
The minimum storage capacity that you might want to consider is 64GB. The higher the resolution of the dash cam is, the more storage capacity you would need in order to record footage. For example, an hour’s worth of footage in 720p may play between 1 and 2 GB of storage, while an hour of footage in 1080p may require up to 6GB.
Size of the Camera
When it comes to driving a vehicle, all obstructions to view are dangerous. This is why it is very important to avoid getting huge dash cams, which will only end up blocking the light of sight. This is extremely important if there are other possible obstructions present inside your cars, such as a dangling air freshener or an EZ-Pass transponder. Smaller models are generally safer.
Some models have the capacity to turn on along with the engine of the car and turn off automatically as soon as the engine also shuts off. This feature is a must-have since dash cams are useful only when they are on. You certainly cannot risk having an accident on the day that you forget to turn it on.
When the storage of the dash cam is filled up, two possible scenarios can happen. One, it stops the recording, and two, it loops back to record over the oldest footage. The first scenario will prevent you from overriding important footages that you simply forgot to transfer, but will also make you vulnerable if it ends up stopping recording right in the middle of the drive. Having the loop recording as a feature is less risky.
Some models of dash cams are designed to detect accidents and save footage automatically starting from some minutes before the actual impact. Others, on the other hand, can turn on automatically when an impact is detected, even though the dash cam was initially off. This is quite handy when parking.
Front and Back Camera
Having both front and back camera is optional. If you are interested in having full coverage, a front-facing model will not be enough. If you get rear-ended, it will not help you. While a front-facing camera can offer some evidence, it will not capture the entire incident. Some dash cams feature a pair of front and back camera, with the back camera, mounted on the rear windshield.
GPS tracking provides proof that an accident actually occurred right at the location where you reported it to have occurred. This is very helpful in situations wherein the footage is unclear. GPS tracking also helps in recording your speeds, which prove to be handy when you are issued wrongful speedy tickets. GPS logging is also useful for parents to see where their children went for the night.
Despite the fact that most dash cam models feature a mounting mechanism, some do not. They are typically designed to lay on the dashboard. However, if this idea does not suit your preference, you can get a separate universal dash cam mount.
Why own a dash cam?
There are a number of reasons why you need to consider having your own dash cam. One of the primary reasons that this equipment has become popular is to make sure that they can capture vital evidence. In cases of accidents, a dash cam records what happened exactly. With this said, a dash cam is not a luxury investment, but a need that provides protection.
What to look for in a dash cam?
In general, the best dash cams out there have similar technology across different models. For the most part, they are placed on the front windscreen or the windshield. The popularity of rear-facing cameras needs extra installation since they usually come with cables from front to back.
Even though other models need the driver to manually tag or save the appropriate clip during an accident, having a detection technology will take care of this automatically. There are also models that boast with some additional features.
To understand the exact features that you would want to find in a quality dash cam, check out the list of features mentioned above.
Where is the best place to put my dash cam?
The best, recommended position is right down the middle of the windshield, just a few inches lower than the headliner. If your dash cam has a suction cup mount, there should be enough space so that the dash cam can be installed easily. Ideally, placing it right behind the rearview mirror is a good choice.
Can police take your dash cam?
Yes. The police can actually take your dash cam if they think that your camera has captured footage of a crime. It is vital to note that if they want to view your footage, they have the right to ask for the recordings, but they cannot actually force you to show them. It is completely up to you, depending on your judgment.
With the recommendations above, as well as the tips mentioned, you are now ready to shop for a dash cam that will fit your needs and preferences. The model that you need to choose should be more than just satisfactory.
Rest assured, you cannot go wrong with any of the options above. Just become one model is way cheaper than the rest; it means that it is worse than the rest. These models have been pre-selected because of their quality. They get the job done, and will provide clear footage as needed. However, a factor that you need to take into consideration is your own preference. This is a key player in making a decision.