What is a Dashboard Camera (Dashcam)?
A Dashboard Camera (Dashcam) is an onboard camera fitted at the front window of a car and used to record traffic incidents. Most people buy a Dashcam for security reasons. Rightly so, because having a Dashcam running when you get involved in an accident or suffer a hit-and-run will give you an invaluable advantage in case you ever need to prove your case in court.
With a Dashcam, you will be able to keep reminders of those magical moments, edit them to make a holiday video, and share them with your friends and family. The possibilities are endless! Why you should have a Dashcam in your car? Because, you can:
- Prove your case in the unfortunate event of an accident
- Report bad drivers / road rage
- Protect your parked vehicle
- Protect from insurance fraud
- Record your route and driving speed
- Monitor your employees and vehicle fleet
- Record holiday and weekend trips
- Capture scenic routes
- Share fun or unlikely events with your family, friends, or the world.
Features you should look for in a Dashcam
Ideally you should select a Dashcam for your car which has the following features.
Discreetness: Dashcam should be small in size, compact so that it fits well and hidden behind the rear view mirror of your car.
Video resolution: The most important factor in a dashboard camera’s video quality is the video resolution it is capable of.
Day/Night video quality: Most Dashcams with a resolution of 720p or above capture decent video during the day and the ability to grab good quality video footage at night is what separates the great camera models from the average.
Loop recording: Very important to make sure your camera doesn’t just stop recording when it runs out of disc space. Loop recording means that once your storage is full, the camera automatically overwrites the oldest files on the memory card, thus enabling it to record indefinitely.
Auto on/off: This means that your camera automatically starts recording when you turn the ignition key and stops recording when the ignition switch is switched off.
G-sensor: A very useful feature. When the G-sensor notices an impact, it will automatically mark the current footage for safekeeping so that it doesn’t accidentally get deleted by the loop recording.
Parking mode: If someone damages your car in your absence, a dash cam with parking mode will come to life and start recording, so you can see the details of the incident.
Date and time stamp: This comes in handy if you ever need to use your video footage as evidence. So, make sure you set the date and time correctly when you install your camera.
Screen: It’s great to see what your camera recorded right away. But it also makes the camera bigger and thus less discreet.
GPS: It allows you to record your exact position and speed, and to blend it into the video feed along with the date and time stamp.
Dual-/Multi-channel: While regular dash cams only record the view through the windshield (looking forward), dual-channel cams also look back into the passenger room of the car and/or out through the rear window.
Power adapter: Ensure Dashcam comes with a power adapter cable for connecting into the cigarette lighter to allow you to install it in the most discreet way possible.
These features allow for set and forget installations, where the user does not have to interact with the camera unless an incident occurs or recent footage is needed.