Best Dash Cam – Buyer’s Guide 2018

So, you’re looking for a new dash cam? Well, look no further. Whether you’re an expert or you know literally nothing about what is the best dash cam for you, we’re here to help. Our brief reviews try not to go in to too much depth, so have a breeze through them and hopefully we can help you find the best dash cam for you!

Check our table below for a view of the 8 dash cams we have listed today. There’s a big variance in price, viewing angle and fps .

Best Dash Cam

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APEMAN 6G

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Screen: 1.5 inch HD LCD

Lens: 170 degree viewing angle, 6G Angle Lens

Resolution: Front-1920*1080P@30FPS , Rear-640*480P

Motion Detector: Yes

Price: $

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Apeman are based in Shenzhen, China and have been producing some great electronics for many years now. They specialize in high quality video footage, which is fantastic news for those looking for the best dash cam. Whilst they don’t hold the prestigious name that Nextbase have, they’re producing some great quality products; at a fraction of the price.

What’s especially nice about this Apeman dash cam is that it’s actually a dual cam. Aside from the 1080p camera in the front, it also has a 640 x 480 camera in the rear. This is ideal for the highly security conscious and is a great addition to an already awesome camera. You will really struggle to find a dual dash cam at a cheaper price than this, making it the best dash cam if you’re looking for a cheap dual option.

Aside from the awesome dual cam, there are of course other great features about the Apeman. We like the 6G lens combined with the 170 degree viewing angle. Too often, a wide viewing angle like this makes it impossible to identify anything unless it’s super close to the camera. With the 6G lens, it’s pretty clear to see number plates and the like no matter how far they are away.

[one_half_first][thrive_text_block color=”green” headline=”Pros”]

1) Compared to some of the other dash cams, the Apeman has an ultra wide viewing angle. This wide span can definitely be an advantage if you have a larger vehicle.

2) The front wires for the dash cam are really easy to conceal; it’s a pet peeve of mine when you get dash cams that have wires all over the place!

3) In terms of the price, you won’t find many cheaper dash cams that this one. It’s definitely one of the better options if you’re after the best dash cam under $100.

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1) The rear camera quality is not great. Myself and many others don’t really use the rear dash cam anywhere near as much as the front, but it might be an issue for some.

2) I know I just said the front wires are easily concealable which I liked, but unfortunately the rear cameras wires aren’t quite as easily concealable as the front cameras. But, with a bit of DIY it’s easy to conceal them completely.

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MAISI 2K Extreme HD Pro 

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Screen: 2.7 inch HD

Lens: 150 degree viewing angle, 6G Lens with F1.8 AP

Resolution: Front-2304*1296p @ 30fps

Motion Detector: Yes

Price: $

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MAISI are a British company that are relatively new when considering other major players in the dash cam market. It is fairly rare to see a British based company in the modern market, especially when considering the rise in Chinese brands emerging in European markets. Whilst it isn’t a necessity for the majority of people, being a British brand does place the MAISI HD Pro in a great position in the UK market.

But is this the best dash cam that you can buy for your money? Well, it’s certainly up there. Especially if you consider the cheap cost of the HD Pro. It is actually cheaper than the majority of other options in our list of the best dash cams, so you’re getting a higher resolution picture for a cheaper price. Go figure?!

Of all the cameras that have made our list of the best dash cam available, this is the only camera that has 1296p resolution. Whilst the extra res might not seem like a big deal, it might just make that difference when identifying that distant numberplate. MAISI claim that this extra resolution increases the image quality by anything up to 50%, which is a pretty significant increase. If you’re looking for a high resolution dash cam, then this could be the best dash cam for you.

[one_half_first][thrive_text_block color=”green” headline=”Pros”]

1) The image quality is top notch, you won’t be surprised with how good it is.

2) 2.7 inches is a pretty standard size for a dash cam, but it feels much wider because the display is great. If you want good visibility, this could be a good option.

3) It has a built in G Sensor for emergencies; this means that it’ll automatically store any footage if you get bumped whilst on the road.

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1) As is the issue with most dash cams, the picture image isn’t great during the night.

2)

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Z-Edge Z3 2K Ultra

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Screen: 3 inch screen

Lens: 150 degree viewing angle, 6G Lens with F1.8 AP

Resolution: Front-,2506×1080 @ 30fps

Motion Detector: Yes

Price: $

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We like the Z-Edge Ultra dash cam. It’s sleek in design and although it’s only made out of plastic, it’s actually really durable and you won’t have to worry too much about damaging it. With some dash cams, they are quick to break upon impact and feel fragile upon holding them. This is not the case with the Z3 Edge.

In our opinion, this is one of the simplest dash cams to use in our list. This makes it ideal if you’re looking for a gift for a loved one, as you don’t need to worry about their ability to use it. Yes, we’re talking about you, Granddad. 

What makes the Z3 Edge stand out from the crowd is the Ambarella chip that is used. Whilst a large percentage of dash cams use a Novotek chip, this is most often associated with cheaper dash cams. As your budget increases, so does the technology used in your dash cam. By using an Ambarella chipset, you’ll likely get far great stability in your recordings and won’t have to worry too much about whether you can see your video footage clearly.

[one_half_first][thrive_text_block color=”green” headline=”Pros”]

1) It’s very easy to operate the Z3 Edge. Some dash cams can be a bit difficult to use, but you’re unlikely to find this an issue with this model.

2) The Z3 is robust, meaning that you won’t need to worry about it breaking if you drop it on the floor.

3) It uses an ambarella chip. This is too complicated for me to explain exactly why it’s better in a few words; this answer on Quora is the best resource I’ve found for a good explanation.

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1) It uses HDR (Higher Dynamic Range) vision, which will probably take you a little while to get used to as opposed to viewing a regular HD screen.

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 FalconZero F170HD+

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Screen: 2.7 inch HD

Lens: 170 degree wide viewing angle, 6G Lens with F2.0 AP, WDR enhancement

Resolution: Front-1920*1080 @ 30fps

Motion Detector: Yes

Price: $

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If you’re looking for the best looking dash cam for your vehicle, then the FalconZero F170 is a fantastic option. It looks great and is clearly designed with the appearance of the product in mind. One of the factors that makes this dash cam visually appealing is the size. It is one of the smaller dash cams available on the market. So, if you’re looking for a dash cam that won’t obstruct your vision whilst driving, then this could be a suitable option.

For a small camera though, it isn’t lacking in specs. It has all the features you would need; looping recordings, 1080p resolution and great night vision. One of the main positives of this dash cam is the company. FalconZero provide a pretty decent 5 year warranty with most of their products, and their customer service is pretty high thought of. Although they are based in the USA, any issues with your dash cam and the guys there will be sure to help you out.

[one_half_first][thrive_text_block color=”green” headline=”Pros”]

1) It’s small and compact, even though it still has a pretty large screen size. I personally like the more compact dash cams because they don’t distract you from driving as much.

2) The 170 degree viewing angle is particularly impressive; great for larger vehicles and those that want optimal viewing.

3) The motion sensor is hyper responsive, so you won’t need to worry about getting too close to another driver.

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1) The quality of the base isn’t great. It feels kinda flimsy if I’m being honest, but that’s part of the sacrifice you make when you opt for a smaller dash cam.

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Nextbase 312GW 

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Screen: 2.7 inch LED

Lens: 140 degree viewing angle

Resolution: Full 1080 recording

Motion Detector: Yes

Price: $$

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So, one of Nextbases’ biggest selling point is that they have an app that you can download. With the app, you can share stuff to your Facebook, or even send any footage straight to your employer. Is the app as useful as they make out? Probably not as hopefully you’ll never have to use it, but it’s definitely a positive which separates Nextbase cameras from other cameras in our list.

Another main selling point for Nextbase is their Click and Go mount. Basically, this just means that the magnetized part of your dash cam is the bit that’s attached to your windscreen. This makes it super easy to disconnect your actual dash cam if needs be. This can come in handy for quickly checking your cam, or letting one of your passengers check it for you.

Aside from those added bonus’s that you don’t get with some of the other dash cams, the 312GW boasts some pretty impressive stats. The only real negatives that can be found with the Nextbase 312GW is that on a rare occasion it becomes slightly pixelated, though this is infrequent and is actually pretty common with any dash cam that is available. But with full 1080p resolution and 140 degree viewing angle, you could certainly do a lot worse that this all-rounder.

[one_half_first][thrive_text_block color=”green” headline=”Pros”]

1) With clear instructions, it’s simple to set up the 312GW. Nothing grinds my gears more than getting a new piece of technology and having no clear instructions on how to set it up!

2) It has something called ‘Click n Go’, which is essentially where you can detach the dash camera itself very easily from the holder. This is because it’s magnetically attached. You won’t need to detach it often, but it can definitely be handy if you want to check the dash cam or pass it to a passenger.

3) It has good quality filming, and it has one of the better cameras in our list.

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1) You’ll need to buy a separate memory card for your dash cam. Not the end of the world, but not ideal either.

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Falcon Zero F-360 HD

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Screen: 2.7 inch HD

Lens: 120 degree viewing angle (180 degree rotation)

Resolution: Full 1080p resolution

Motion Detector: Yes

Price: $$$

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This is the second Falcon Zero dash cam to make our list, and it’s slightly more expensive than its compatriot. We’re not sure if it’s worth the extra dosh, but there’s a couple of reasons it might be.

Whilst the viewing angle is technically only 120 degrees, the dash cam itself is 180 degree rotatable. This means that if you need to record a certain angle, you can pretty much see anywhere around the car with both cameras. In some situations, people have even placed both cameras facing forward, giving you an ultra-wide viewing angle that cannot be beat.

With the automatic looping system, you’ll never miss a beat with this dash cam. Though this used to be a luxury, this is becoming standard in the best dash cams nowadays.

The main issue with F-360 is the rear-view camera is nowhere near the quality of the front camera. Whilst it still works, it doesn’t provide as higher quality picture as some of the other dual cameras in our list of dash cam reviews. The front camera is of a high quality, but this doesn’t make up for the weaker rear camera. If you aren’t too concerned about the rear-view camera, then this would be a fantastic choice.

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1) Whilst it only has a 120 degree viewing angle, it has 180 degree rotation which gives you pretty much optimal viewing for a dash cam.

2) The image quality is great (yes, this is the same for most of the dash cams on the list or they wouldn’t be on here!).

3) If you are a novice in terms of dash cams and technology, then you’ll be okay with this one. It’s pretty easy to work.

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1) The main issue that I could see with this dash cam is that it’s pretty expensive; it’s more than double the cheapest dash cam that I’ve listed. I’m a stickler for a bargain, but if you have that extra cash lying around, it can be worth splashing out on a high quality dash cam like this one.

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Nextbase 402G

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Screen: 2.7 inch backlit anti-glare screen

Lens: 140 degree viewing angle, 6G Lens with F/1.6 AP

Resolution: Full 1080p resolution

Motion Detector: Yes

Price: $$

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It must be said. The 402G is the go to camera for those looking for an optimum picture – especially at night. The night recording of this camera is almost unparalleled; you’ll struggle to find anything matching the Nextbase 402G. The 2.7 inch LED screen isn’t huge, but the quality of the picture makes it easy to see for even those hard of vision.

Aside from the sharp video recording, the 402G is a pretty solid option if you’re looking for a decent dash cam that meets all the usual criteria. By this, we mean having a good quality GPS tracking and a 1080p resolution. It also has G sensor data protection built in, which means that you won’t risk losing any files that are corrupted and they won’t be overwritten.

Wondering what the similarities and differences are between the 402G and the 312GW? Well, aside from a few quid, there isn’t too much between them. The 402G Pro isn’t set up for Wi-Fi, which might be a deal breaker for some. It also hasn’t got the magnetic mount that the 312 has, which could also be an issue for those looking for the upmost convenience. While the specs are strikingly similar, the main positive of the 402G is the wide-angle view that can’t be beaten. We’re not sure if that warrants the slight increase in price, though.

[one_half_first][thrive_text_block color=”green” headline=”Pros”]

1) It comes with quite a bit of PC software to get past. Don’t worry, it’s easy to set up, even for the biggest technophobes out there.

2) The backlit anti glare screen will come in handy, as this is one of the most common issues that people complain about when they first purchase a dash cam.

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1) There’s no wifi integrated into the 402G, which is the main difference between this model and it’s cousin, the 302GW. For that reason, I prefer the 312GW, though the majority of the time the lack of wifi will not be an issue.

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Vantrue N2 Dual Dash Cam

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Screen: 2.7 inch HD

Lens: 140 degree viewing angle

Resolution: Front-1980×1080 @ 30fps

Motion Detector: Yes

Price: $$$

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Whilst the Vantrue N2 is one of the more expensive dash cameras available, it holds its own in terms of capabilities. Does it warrant its high price tag? Well if you’ve got the extra cash to spare, it’s worth considering as the best dash cam.

So, what can the N2 do that the other dash cams can’t? Well, the video quality itself is great. With 1080p in the front camera and 720p in the rear camera, you’ll be hard pushed to find a better rear cam on the market. Whilst it might struggle slightly in the dark like any other rear dash cam, this is probably the best you’re going to get. It reads well in the daytime and even through to dusk, which is better than most other dash cams. Both cameras have a frame rate of 30fps, which is pretty much the standard of any high-end dash cam.

The front camera has a 170 degree viewing angle which is pretty impressive. More impressive though is the rear camera, which has a viewing angle of 140 degrees. All too often with dual dash cams you will see a huge effort put into the front cam with little effort put into the rear, leaving it slightly lackluster. This isn’t the case with the N2, with as much effort being put into the rear-view cam as the front.

The N2 only takes a 32gb memory card as standard, but it loops continuously and will overwrite the older recordings automatically. It’s super easy to save a small 5 minute recording from the files that have been recorded, making it one of the most user friendly dash cams around.

Whilst there are some other great features of the N2, we don’t want to keep boring you with details.

[one_half_first][thrive_text_block color=”green” headline=”Pros”]

1) This is one of the only dash cams where the rear view cam impresses as much as the front. It’s nice to have a dash cam company that have put as much effort into the rear dash cam as the front!

2) Both the front and the rear dash cam have a great viewing angle.

3) It’s small and compact, but you won’t need to worry about it breaking because it’s a pretty tough cookie.

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1) I checked online, and there seems to be a couple of issues with people getting sent dodgy cameras. This isn’t the norm and the product has a good warranty, but I thought it was worth mentioning.

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[thrive_headline_focus title=”Why do I need a dash cam? ” orientation=”left”] Now, this might not appeal to everyone. But, if you’re taking a trip somewhere, then it’s definitely a good idea to invest in a decent dash cam. You can watch your whole journey back and look for certain moments, or even make a pretty cool collage of your events like the one below;
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Another one of the main reasons that dash cams have become extremely popular in recent years is that they can reduce your insurance policy by up to 20%. In effect, a dash cam will likely pay for itself over the years that you own it. This is especially true if you choose to go with certain insurance companies that offer the dash cam discount, such as Swift.

You can reduce the amount of your insurance significantly if you sign up to one of these dash cam insurance schemes. Though many of these insurers will likely ask you to send them footage of the incident, some do not. It all depends on the terms and conditions of your insurer, which you should always check first. The best dash cam will have all the settings you require, including the speed you are travelling at. This can be extremely useful if you need to prove this.

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Whilst the majority of people don’t necessarily need a dash cam, they are becoming increasingly popular. This is with good reason, as there are many benefits to having a dash cam installed in your car. Some of these benefits include;

With the speeding limit minimums being increased to £100 and 3 points, it’s important to avoid this at any means necessary. Remember, 12 points and you’re out. Not only this, but 3 points will significantly affect your insurance premiums. Also, even having a certain amount of points on your license can significantly affect your employability. Because of this, it is important to see if you can get the best dash cam available that includes checking for speed cameras.

Some more advanced dash cams will have a speed camera ‘searcher’ integrated into the dash cam. This will let you know if there

There are also cases of people escaping speeding tickets by submitting their dash cam evidence to their local government. Again, by investing in a dash cam, you can end up saving quite a bit of money. Especially if you are prone to drifting over the speed limit!

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Of course, probably the most valid reason for getting a dash cam is the ability to film any incidents that occur to your vehicle. This goes for both when you’re driving, and when your car or vehicle is parked. Apparently one in five drivers has hit another vehicle and then driven away without a thought. With this in mind, having a dash cam is a pretty sure fire way to track down those ‘dent and runners’.

 

[/thrive_toggles][thrive_toggles title=”Just filming in general” no=”4/4″]And of course, whilst you’re driving, it’s pretty important to get some footage of any incidents or collisions that occur. This way, your insurer can see exactly what has gone on. It might be the difference between your insurance claim getting approved or denied.[/thrive_toggles][/thrive_toggles_group]

 

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If you have purchased a dash cam, then a good way to save some money is to fit it yourself. Most automotive centres like Halfords will fit them for you, but it’s pretty easy to do it yourself. Dash cams have even saved people money on their car insurance, so they’re worth the investment.

When looking how to install a dash cam in your car, there are a few steps that you need to take. We’ve listed them below to try and help you know how to install a dash cam in your car.

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The first thing you have to consider when you install a dash cam in your car is the location. If the camera is at a higher point, you actually get a little but more depth in your view which will be a big advantage.

Another thing you have to consider is glare. This is especially important if you’re living in a sunny country, as it can be a nightmare and make your dash cam almost obsolete if you don’t position it in the right location. To do this, you should drive around as normal for a few days. Try to take notice of which position on the inside of your windshield doesn’t seem to be affected much by the glare. This way, you can minimize the likelihood of glare interfering with your dash cam.

The best position is typically just to the left of your rear view mirror. Make sure that it still avoids the windscreen wipers, though!

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By putting your dash cam at a higher point, it will be easier for you to run the wire down from your windshield to the car charger or power source.

The idea is essentially to hide the wire inside the trim of your car. You need to tuck the wire up into the top of the windshield, and run it all along the top of the windshield to the car window. From there, you can tuck the wiring into the weather seal all down the side of the A-Frame of the car.

After this, you need to feed the wires through the foot well into you can plug it into your car charger. Obviously, it isn’t that easy; this video gives a pretty great guide of how to hide your wires.

A good tip is to try and put the wiring through the passenger side. By doing this, you eliminate the risk of the dash cam falling down and distracting you whilst driving. This is unlikely to happen if you install it properly, but it’s still a good precaution to take.

Of course, every car is different and there will be different parts of the car that ‘pop off’ and enable you to hide the wiring. This should be pretty easy to do, as most of the items of your car that pop off will be made in plastic.

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Once your dash cam is installed, you should take your car out a few times to check that it’s in the right position. By driving short distances at a slow pace first, you minimize the risk of your dash cam giving you a false sense of awareness.

Of course, as with any car installation, safety comes first. If you do your research and follow the instructions then everything should be fine, but make sure to take care when you are install the dash cam in your car.

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Well, they’re all pretty good, otherwise we wouldn’t have mentioned them. It does all depends on your specific situation, as different dash cams will fit different criteria. You want an answer? Okay, you pushed us. If we had to pick one, it would be;

Nextbase 312GW 

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Whilst the other dash cams on the list do a fine job, we especially like the Nextbase 312GW. Not because it’s the very best; there are other cameras that are slightly better in certain areas. The MAISI has 1296p, so technically it is better in that aspect. But the question is; who needs 1296p? We have always found that 1080p is enough to get a decent image.

We picked the Nextbase 312GW because of its abilities as an all-rounder. It has Wi-Fi, which a surprising amount of dash cams still do not feature. Its mounting system is especially impressive, enabling you to quickly take the dash cam from the windscreen if necessary. The convenience of having a wireless dash cam is actually more substantial than you might think.

Aside from that, we picked this 213GW as our favourite as it does all of the standard jobs pretty well. The quick GPS system is fast enough to match any other dash cam around. The night vision quality is also decent. Whilst the 140 degree viewing angle isn’t the widest available, in our opinion 140 degrees will be enough for the average car.

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