Beginner’s Buying guide for dash cam will help you to choose the best dash cam that will fulfill your requirements.


What is dash cam?

Most of the people do not even know what dash cam is, and for which purpose they are used. Dash cam is also known as dashboard camera. Dash cam is like a small camera device, which records the video and saves it. This small device can be attached on the front as well as on rear windshield of the car.

Main purpose of using a dash cam is to capture accident video. In the developed countries there are strict traffic laws. Involvement of insurance companies make the complex traffic law situation worse. In the light of traffic deteriorating situation dash cam is introduced.

 They record the video of the front as well as rear view of the car. The video helps to determine the person who is on the fault, in case of any accident. So, in other words people use dash cam to prove their innocence in emergency case like road rage, accidents, Etc.

Types of dash cam

There are several type of dash cams available in the market. Each one is used for different purpose. Some dash cams can be called as all-rounder dash cam because of multiple features they have.

Forward view dash cam:

Forward view dash cam type is controlling a majority of market share. This type of dash cam is used to record the video of the front side of the car. To cover the front view clearly, forward vied type of dash cam attaches around the rear view mirror of the car. Different types of front view dash cam are available in the market. These types are based on the shape as well as on the capabilities of the forward view dash cam.

Hanging forward view dash cam:

Hanging forward view dash cam is mounted on the upper middle side of the windscreen, just below the rear view mirror. This type of dash cam comes with the LCD screen in order to view the recording.  This type of dash cam shape is the oldest in the industry, and is full of features, which are useful for any driver.

Rear view mirror mounted dash cam:

This type of forward view dash cam has a long body that attaches itself to the rear view mirror of the car instead of the windscreen. A small LCD display is also available in this dash cam. This LCD display is viewed on the small screen available on the front side of the rear view mirror.  This futuristic display helps to easily access the stored data in the dash cam.

Tube shape forward view dash cam:

This type of forward view dash cam does not have any display. It can give you a larger camera lens. This large camera lens can capture video at high degree, which will cover a wider area of the front view. This also helps the police in order to understand the whole situation when accident occurs.

Wedge shaped dash cam:

This type of forward view dash cam is just like the hanging type dash cam. But it is attached on the lower middle side of the windshield. It also comes with the lcd as well as the ability to capture video with wider front view.

Rear view dash cam:

The rear view dash cam is used for the video recording of the rear view of the car. In order to better prove your innocence, sometimes you need this type of camera. For example, if a car hits you from behind, and places the whole blame on you then you can prove your innocence by the recording of rear view dash cam.

Combination type dash cam:

In Combination type dash cam two cameras are included in the package. The combination of two cameras generate three subcategories. Which are installed in the car according to customer requirements. Subcategories are as follow.

  1. Rear + front view camera
  2. Rear + inside view camera
  3. Front + inside view camera

Fully loaded dahs cam:

In fully loaded dash cam type, three cameras are installed in the car. View of the car from the front, rear, as well as from the inside is captured by fully loaded dash cam. This dash cam is most expensive one from all the types.

Basic features that are included in dash cam

Power Source of dash cam:

Dash cam runs on the power which is provided by the car 12 volt charging dock. Dash cams are small. They do not have enough backup battery capacity to record the video without any direct power for long time. There backup power capacity is limited. They can record video from few second to few minutes.

Modern dash cam comes with a USB-A cable that powers them. This USB cable also gets the power from the 12 v charging dock available in the car. If you turn off the car, this charging dock also cut off the power.

In order to provide dash cam power for 24 hours. You need to set up dash cam charging cable directly to the car battery.

This will expire your dash cam warranty as well as put more strain on your car battery. This increases the risk of sparking of battery as well as short circuiting the whole dash cam. So it is better to avoid the direct wiring of dash cam. Instead use the 12 v charging dock to power up the dash cam.

Night vision:

Modern dash cam comes with night vision capability. People buy the night vision cam in order to record the clear number plate as well as the culprit in case of the accident. But it is a of no use practically. People buy night vision type dash cam because they think this will give them the clear picture at night.

This is not the case, night vision just gives the blur image with some brightness. So, it will be a waste of money to use night vision dash cam.

Computer software:

Modern dash cam has the ability to connect to the computer software of their companies. This ability allows the user to connect the dash cam to the computer software and to retrieve the data. This can also be used to format the data as well as to view the recorded data.

This facility does not come along with the older version of dash cam. In older version to store the data only the memory card is used.

Loop recording feature of Dash Cam:

 In all the dah cams there is a limit up to which the cam can record data. If the memory card becomes full then the loop recording feature will allow the dash cam to store the new data on the previously recorded data.

The result of which is the loss of previous store data. But this provides you the fresh recorded video. Which will not be available if the dash cam does not overwrite the data. If you use the cloud storage system with dash cam then none of your data will be lost due to overwriting procedure.

Memory capacity:

Memory of dash cam depends upon the size of the memory card storage capacity. If you use the 32 gb memory card then it will store up to 4 hours of recording. This is more than enough, but if you record the video in high resolution as well as in high frame rate then the recording time will be reduced.

In the aforementioned scenario the recording time will be reduced to 30 minutes. 256 gb memory card provide us with 16 hours of storage capacity. Memory in newer model is not the problem, because the cloud storage as well as mobile attachment capability allows the dash cam to store the video on the mobile as well as on the cloud storage.

LCD Display:

Dash cams are of different type. Some comes with lcd display. This display helps the customer to view the recorded view on the spot as well as gives the live recording view while travelling. This LCD display also allows the user to straighten the tilted dash cam for better recording.

GPS Tracking:

In modern dash cam GPS tracking system is included. This system automatically calculates the person location and speed during the drive and imprint it on the recorded video. This feature facilitates the police to better examine the situation in case of accident.

The imprinted GPS location as well as speed helps the police to determine who is speeding, and who is not.

Lane departure warning system:

Dash cam comes with lane departure warning system allows the user to control their car if they feel dizzy. On long drive, driver can feel dizziness due to the tiredness and some time they can lose control.

when car gets out of control it moves towards other line, the dash cam through the help of its camera alert the passenger that line violation has been done. This system alerts passenger to regains the lost control and to avoid accidents.

Mobile app:

Some dash cams have ability to connect to mobile devices by the help of Bluetooth as well as Wi-Fi. This allows the dash cam to store data on the mobile device. User can also open the mobile device to view the dash cam recording.

Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity:

Latest dash cams have built in Wi-Fi feature as well as with Bluetooth access. which helps the user to connect the dash cam to mobile as well as to computer. This provides the user access to dash cam features and to the recordings saved in dash am.

This feature also allow the user to save the video directly in mobile device as a proof. So, the whole transfer process of recording from SD card to computer and then to mobile device is eliminated. This increases the customer comfort level.

Backup battery:

Always buy the dash cam that has the ability to record the video even if dash cam is not attached to power socket. This capability is necessary in emergency case. When you get into the car accident, car power gets cut off most of the times and dash cam also stops recording due to no power.

So, to counter the half recorded accident videos companies developed small capacitor batteries in the dash cam. This provides the dash cam with enough energy to record the videos even if the dash cam is not attached to power. But the capacitor battery only provides power for some minutes.

Parking mode:

Parking mode is the feature included in the dash cam to save the storage capacity of dash cam. when you park the car, dash cam automatically switches off the recording, this not only save the memory but also increase the efficiency of dash cam.

Surveillance of Surrounding:

if you live in the neighborhood where crime rate is high. And you need a dash cam which record everything for 24/7. Then buy the dash cam that allows to connect the power cord directly to the battery and have ability to prevent the short circuiting of the dash cam.

Voice recognition:

Dash cam also uses the microphone in order to record the conversation of the passenger. This feature is optional, and most people don’t like this feature because of privacy concern.

But feature is to record the conversation in order to find out that person is sober or not when he was driving the car. This feature helps the police to narrow down their investigation in car accident cases.

Lens angle:

Dash cams that have large lens angle have the capacity to record the video of wider area. In accident cases this feature allows the police to better understand the situation. Because larger lens angle store the video for large area and reduce the blind spots.

Cloud support:

Dash cam comes with cloud storage support, this allow the dash cam to use the cloud storage space in case of no memory available on the SD card. This feature also gives the user a whole inventory of past videos. So that user can search and take any past video user’s need.

Video resolution:

Dash cam also has the capability to store video at 4K resolution. This feature immensely improves the video quality of dash cam. So, in case of emergency, recorded footage can be used to find the serial number of the car. In recording the video at high resolution storage capacity is reduced drastically.

Frames of the videos:

Dash cam comes with the ability to record video at 60 frames per second. This feature allows the police to find the serial number as well as the clear face of the owner of the car in case of accident.

Final Verdict:

People now a days consider dash cam as their first line of defense in case of accident. This is because of the convenience it gives to people. There are variety of dash cam available in the market. But most widely used dash cam is forward view dash cam. Because it comes in compact design and can record high quality picture.

So, if you want an dash cam that can fulfill your driving requirement. Then go for forward view dash cam. If you do not like the features of froward view dash cam, then go through the guide in order to find the best option for you.