Many people have realized the importance of installing dashboard cameras to record their drive. The dashboard cameras also go by the name of accident recorders, car cameras, car DVR and even dash cam. The dash cam is a surveillance camera that is uniquely designed for the vehicles. As it has become a must-have device, it is important that you understand the relevant features to look for when you want to have one installed in your vehicle.
As the name suggests, dash cams are designed to function like cameras. Just like the camera, the dash cam has a camera lens, an image sensor and a processor, in addition to other components. Its quality is determined by the type of inbuilt image sensor and processor that it has. It is therefore important that you pay close attention for this when shopping for the dashboard camera.
- 1 The benefits you can expect from a dashboard camera in 2018
- 2 1. ZeroEdge Z1 Plus – 2.4 inch dash cam
- 3 2. Garmin Dash Cam 35
- 4 3. FalconZero F170HD with GPS Dash Cam
- 5 4. Blackvue Cloud DR650S-2CH Dash Cam
- 6 5. The Z-Edge Z3 3-Inch 2K Ultra-Full HD
- 7 Conclusion on Dash Cam analysis for 2018
The benefits you can expect from a dashboard camera in 2018
One important feature of the dash cam is its ability to loop record. This feature makes continuous recording possible irrespective of the capacity of memory. This feature is unique to the dash cam and other surveillance cameras. The loop-recording feature records in segments. This is important as it ensures that the entire video is not corrupted even when one section is compromised. When the memory capacity is full, the dash cam continues to record non-stop by overwriting the oldest footage. This is quite convenient to the driver, as he/she does not have to fear that the cam could fail in its recording function.
The dash cam also has a g-sensor. This feature allows the cam to measure and record any forces that will act on the vehicle whenever there is a change in speed and velocity. The g-sensor is designed to protect the cam footage whenever the vehicle comes to an abrupt stop, or is involved in an accident that occasions a sudden movement. The g-sensor responds to an accident by locking the footage, and safeguarding it from being overwritten.
The dash cam has a host of other important features. Extras that come with the dash cam include Forward Collision Warning System (FCWS), Lane Departure Warning System (LDWS) and the all-favorite GPS. These extras are usually installed on request, although they are standard in some dash cam brands. There is a software application for viewing movies, GPS data, and shock-sensor data recorded by your dashcam or action cam – Dashcam Viewer. It supports over 70 camera models including the reviewed. Link to download:
The FCWS feature allows you to know that distance between your vehicle and the one in front. If you are too close, the system will give you a warning, and you can therefore adjust your speed and distance.
Dash cams require a constant supply of power for them to operate. They are connected to the vehicle via the cigarette outlet, or can be hardwired into the fuse box. This means that the dash cam cannot be used outside the vehicle. It starts recording once the ignition is put on, and will keep recording as long as the engine is running.
There are a lot of options in the market when it comes to the purchase of the dash cam. The following are the best dash cam in 2018 for your vehicle.
1. ZeroEdge Z1 Plus – 2.4 inch dash cam
- Resolutions supported: 2304*1296P (1296P 30fps) 1920*1080P (1080P 30fps) 1280*720P (720P 60fps). These give very clear images.
- An arm that can rotate to give a view angle of 150.
- You can customize the video clip in segments of 1,3,5 and 10 mins.
- Seamless online video recording.
- A microphone that can be adjusted manually to cater for the sensitivity level required.
- Saves energy as it has a screen off customizable option while recording. It also starts when the vehicle is turned on, and switches off with the vehicle.
- Highly sensitive g-sensor to safeguard footage when crash or collision is imminent.
- It is able to detect vibration in the parking lot. It also monitors the vehicle while it is in parking.
- Memory Card: Support up to 128GB Micro SD/TF Card. 16GB Kingston SD memory card is in the box.
- Illumination contrast that is manually adjustable.
- Low light compensation for superb video recording even in poor light.
(+) The Merits of ZeroEdge Z1 Plus
- The device detects when the engine turns on and off. It thus automatically turns on and off with the engine.
- It has a user-friendly interface that employs a number of languages (English, Russian, Portuguese, Classic Chinese, Simplified Chinese, etc.) for the convenience of the user.
- 16GB Kingston SD memory card is included in the package.
- Computer system that is fully supported.
(-) The Demerits of ZeroEdge Z1 Plus
- It has very few safety features.
2. Garmin Dash Cam 35
This new device from Garmin is rather trustworthy as it is manufactured by a firm that has been in the industry for a respectable length of time. It has a resolution of up to 1080p high definition recorded at 30fps. It has a data rate of 8Mbits/second and RAC 05 GPS Navigation. Its footage is stored in a 4GB microSD card. It can accommodate additional storage media of about 64GB – enough to store more than an hour of recording.
Once the storage capacity is exhausted, the dash cam commences to loop, deleting the older files to create space for new footage. However, it is quite possible to mark data to be saved to avoid its deletion in the process.
- An inbuilt GPS.
- A full High definition camera.
- A 3 inch widescreen.
- 4GB MicroSD card.
- Safety cameras with crash detection.
- Review price of $149.99
(+) The Merits of the Garmin Dash 35
- GPS navigation alongside video recording.
- Very good performance
- Option to add collision camera warnings.
(-) The Demerits of Garmin Dash 35
- Has fewer safety features than some gadgets in the market.
- Captured car power adapter cable.
3. FalconZero F170HD with GPS Dash Cam
This unit from Falcon Zero records in 1080p, with the camera having a viewing angle of 169 degrees. It can thus capture a lot of footage from around the car. It is possible to take on demand shots due to the on-device buttons available. It has a microphone and speaker. Thus, it can record online video as well as music simultaneously. The GPS unit is ideal for capturing data regarding the time, date, location and the speed of the vehicle.
- Loop interval tracking that includes 32GB 10 Class Facts.
- Full high definition 1920*1080 recording at 30fps.
- Recording commences as soon as the car is in motion.
- A wide 169 camera degree
- A strong, sturdy F170HD camera.
- Night vision enhanced with ultra-high definition capture
- GPS module captures date, time, location and vehicle speed.
- The F170HD camera uses the latest technology: HDR, WDR, Night Vision, 6-glass lens and full high definition to give the best images.
- 5 years guarantee
- The GPS module allows the driver to monitor the route on Bing Roadmaps and Yahoo Maps.
- In the box is included the F170HD and video recorder, Windshield Mount, 32GIG microSD, GPS UNIT, 14ft of power cable, info cable, power cord route management clips 3 port charger and a manual.
(+) The Merits of Falcon Zero F170HD+ GPS DashCam 1080P
- Full definition camera with a resolution of 1920*1080, recording at 30fps.
- Inbuilt GPS unit that allows you to keep track of the route taken.
- A 169 degree camera angle.
- Amazing clarity of footage.
(-) The Demerits of Falcon Zero F170HD+ GPS DashCam 1080P
- A glitch on the menu number has be noted – the camera switches to default when the camera is switched off.
- The light on the camera provided for the night vision functionality displays from the dashboard or windscreen.
4. Blackvue Cloud DR650S-2CH Dash Cam
Pittasoft, the manufacturers of this cam are the only ones so far to produce a front and back cam for heavy commercial vehicles and vans. The DR650S-2CH is the standard version. It is similar to the truck version (DR650S-2CH Truck), although the Truck version employs a rugged rear camera that can be installed on the outside of the vehicle .It is made to withstand the extreme weather conditions on the exterior of the vehicle. The camera comes with a 49ft water-proof coaxial that is used to connect to the key device. It is also equipped with night vision ability through infra-red (IR) lights.
The actual camera for both the standard and Truck versions is the same. However, the Truck version has superior night performance due to its IR lights capabilities. it is noteworthy that IR lights are not good for cameras that are installed on the dashboard or windshield. This is because the reflections they cause might be an impediment to the driver’s performance at the wheel. However, for rear cameras mounted on the exterior of the vehicle, the IR lights come highly recommended.
Blackvue remote mobile features can be used via the official smartphone applications:
(+) The Merits of Blackvue Cloud DR650S-2CH Dash Cam
- Inbuilt GPS
- A very sleek design
- Has both front and back cameras.
- Has cloud connectivity.
(-) The Demerits of Blackvue Cloud DR650S-2CH Dash Cam
- Quite expensive
- The viewing angle and video quality is not so good.
- Application lacks intuitiveness.
5. The Z-Edge Z3 3-Inch 2K Ultra-Full HD
The Z-Edge Z3 is renowned for its great online video and image quality. It records in 2560*1080-pixel format using a dependable programmed process. It is attached to the windscreen or dashboard through a mini tripod thread that works in conjunction with a suction mechanism. In this position, it is quite possible to adjust the angle and rotation of the camera. The device comes with two cables – one to connect to the power source, and the other to the device if it is being mounted quite high. You are also provided with 4 cable television clips and a USB socket that allows you to power the device and charge your phone simultaneously.
- Loop Tracking – it uses the loop for efficiency in storage. The older videos are overwritten to create space for new recording. It has an online video clip that can be conveniently customized at a duration of 1,3 and 5 minutes.
- Collision Detection – its g-sensor is extremely sensitive. It is highly powered to safeguard the footage in the event of a collision or extreme sudden movement. The g-sensor setting is adjustable to low, mid and high.
- Large Configuration – unlike most cams in the market that are based on Novatek chips, the Z-Edge Z3 3-Inch 2K Ultra-Full HD is based on the Ambrella A7 processor that is quite efficient by any standards. It allows for seamless recording, while the OV4689 image sensor records in color in 1296p resolution.
- Motion Detection – the device can sense the motion of the vehicle and respond accordingly. It stops recording when the vehicle stops, and immediately resumes when the vehicle resumes motion.
- Ignition Diagnosis – the device is ideal for almost all models of cars, save for those that always have power in their cigarette lighters. It is turned on when the engine coughs to life, and is turned off when the engine is switched off.
- Vibration Detection – in case of a vibration in the parking lot, the device switches on and records what could be going on in the vicinity of the vehicle.
- Detailed technical specifications of the device are available via the manufacturer’s website.
(+) The Merits of the Z-Edge Z3 3-Inch 2K Ultra-Full HD
- It is built with the high performance Ambarella A7. Additionally, it has the OV4689 image sensor lens solution that records in color.
- It is easy to install. It is installed with a tripod and suction mechanism.
- It has a portable 3 inch high definition display screen that is quite easy to store.
(-) The Merits of the Z-Edge Z3 3-Inch 2K Ultra-Full HD
The device is a bit expensive. However, its level of performance and convenience easily negates the cost implication.
Conclusion on Dash Cam analysis for 2018
This year, you would be spoilt for choice when it comes to the purchase of dashboard cameras for your vehicle. These are great investments that every driver should make. So, go ahead and shop around. Some of the offers you are bound to discover in the market will surprise you!