The 10 Best Car Dash Cameras

Updated July 15, 2017 by Brett Dvoretz

10 Best Car Dash Cameras
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 43 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top choices for this wiki. If it's true that a picture is worth a thousand words, then a video must be worth millions, especially in the event of an automobile accident. Now you can keep your eyes on the road and trust that these car dash cameras are doing the same, while recording all they see in high quality video in case you need evidence after a collision. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best car dash camera on Amazon.

10. AUTO-VOX B40-C

The AUTO-VOX B40-C provides high definition video compression and smooth imaging at a price that's hard to resist. Its contoured design is also easy to hide behind a rearview mirror and blends in nicely with your car's accessories, so nobody will know you're recording.
  • auto-start and on-spot playback
  • only takes 15 minutes to install
  • nighttime video quality is poor
Model DVR-A118-C
Weight 12 ounces
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

9. Ausdom AD170

The Ausdom AD170 ensures everything will be accurately recorded in the event of a collision, and features a motion detection function that automatically starts recording with the slightest movement. Its intuitive controls make it easy to use.
  • prevents overload and under exposure
  • has a multilingual interface
  • time stamp isn't always correct
Brand Ausdom
Model AD170
Weight 12 ounces
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

8. PowerLead Puda D003

The PowerLead Puda D003 has a large housing with big buttons that make it easy to fiddle with settings while driving, but that also means it stands out and doesn't look discreet. The inclusion of a rear camera to record rear-end collisions is a nice touch, though.
  • supports micro sd cards up to 32 gb
  • produces sharp and vivid images
  • doesn't have a gps
Brand PowerLead
Model PL191A0334CN
Weight 1.2 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

7. REXING S300

The REXING S300 records video using wide dynamicrRange, which produces a more balanced and vivid video, making it is easier to see fine details in all lighting conditions. It also comes with a 16 GB microSD card, so it's ready to install and use right out of the box.
  • fog-resistant lens
  • lens is rotatable in all directions
  • housing is somewhat bulky
Weight 4.8 ounces
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

6. TaoTronics TT-CD05

The TaoTronics TT-CD05 is a reliable and intelligent driving companion that shows live footage on the 2.7" LCD screen as it is being recorded. It has a collision detection feature that automatically preserves important clips, which is great when needing evidence.
  • can change video recording format
  • adds license plates to recordings
  • cannot stand up to extreme heat
Brand TaoTronics
Model TT-CD05
Weight 16 ounces
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

5. RoadHawk DC-2

The best-selling RoadHawk DC-2 has got you covered with a built-in microphone, looping DVR, and full resolution 1080p video quality. The camera records well in low light settings and comes with a vertical mount design that minimizes any reflections.
  • gyro balanced image stabilization
  • 127-degree wide-angle lens
  • gps logger has google maps interface
Brand Timetec
Weight 1.3 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

4. ITrue X3

The ITrue X3 has a classy simulated stitched leather housing that nearly eliminates the chance of glare reflecting into the driver's eyes. It can function in temperatures ranging from 10°F to 140°F, and it even supports audio recording as well.
  • large lcd display screen
  • locks accident data into memory
  • 1920 by 1080 video resolution
Model ITRUE-X3
Weight 2.3 pounds
Rating 4.3 / 5.0

3. Vantrue OnDash R2

The Vantrue OnDash R2 has an Ambarella A7L50 processor, which allows it to process videos quickly without any glitches or lags. It provides exceptional night vision and features wide dynamic range for crisp details in every image.
  • six layer optical glass lens
  • dust and heat-proof components
  • seamless loop recording
Model OnDash R2
Weight 1.1 pounds
Rating 5.0 / 5.0

2. Z-Edge

The Z-Edge takes full HD video recordings and has a 3 inch display screen so you can see exactly what it is recording and where it is pointing. It also starts automatically each time you get in your car and turn the ignition key.
  • usb and battery power options
  • comes with a 32 gb sd memory card
  • best-in-class color cmos sensor
Brand Z-Edge
Weight 14.4 ounces
Rating 4.5 / 5.0

If Your Car Had Eyes

Anyone who's been driving for more than a few weeks has a story to tell. It usually involves another driver on the road doing something so mind-bendingly stupid that it takes all of your will power not to pull off to the side of the road and scream endless strings of profanities at the innocent dandelions growing there.

Sometimes those stories end with something more tragic than a flash of road rage. Sometimes people's cars get smashed; sometimes people get hurt. You can try to explain what happened to the police, but they're liable to arrive on the scene after you've moved your cars out of the way of traffic, and then it's your word against that of the other driver.

Having a dashcam installed in your vehicle can do wonders for bringing the truth of an accident to the forefront of its investigation. That can save you a tremendous amount of money in legal fees and insurance hikes, and it's as easy as applying a suction cup to your windshield and plugging the device into your AC port or cigarette lighter.

Once plugged in, most dash cams will power on and start recording to an internal SD card as soon as your car's engine starts. That recording is a well-compressed high definition feed that can make sense of almost any event on the road, drinking in light through a simple, low-element lens that can often double as an infrared recorder for night footage.

It's like giving your car its very own set of cat's eyes without that creepy cataract reflection.

The Law's Not Always On Your Side

Currently, insurance companies in Russia and the UK actually offer insurance discounts to drivers who install dashcams in their cars. Not only is it their thinking that the footage can save precious man hours during a dispute or investigation, but both of those regions deal with a much higher rate of insurance fraud than the companies stateside, and dashcam footage makes that kind of grift much harder to perpetrate.

There are no such discounts currently in the US, and the use of dashcam footage in claim investigations and disputes is currently without any defined policy from the top five insurance providers. So, you aren't liable to see a ton of savings coming your way unless you get a tech-savvy claims adjuster on the line who's interested in using the lack of a policy as permission to utilize dashcam footage to help a customer. When was the last time you got customer service that thorough from an insurer? Yeah, I thought so.

Where the footage from your dashcam might prove indispensable, though, is in a criminal case. In the unfortunate instance where you find yourself on the business end of a vehicular litigation, be it a reckless driving allegation, vehicular manslaughter, or some such nightmare, the only proof of your innocence (provided you are innocent) could lie in your dashcam footage.

Be careful where the law's concerned, though. Each state has its own unique statues regarding audio and video recording of police and citizens. Be sure to review your state's statutes before installing your dashcam, lest you find yourself under arrest for an illegal wire tap.

Bad Boys, Bad Boys...

I watched a lot of bad television growing up, especially when I was home sick from school. Fox had the most notorious lineup of trashy mid-day talk shows and bleeding lead news. But it was their reliable airing of one show that kept me tuning in. That show was COPS.

COPS came about in an age before reality TV, and yet it proves that the age of reality TV had already begun. Harsh lighting, bad acting, staged arguments, and absolute train wrecks of human beings–in short, the necessary ingredients of a good reality show–were all accounted for.

One source of footage of which the show took sporadic advantage, was the police dashcam. The first of these cameras came along in the 1980s, and both their size and their reliance on VHS tapes made them poor, bulky options for inclusion in a police cruiser.

Over the intervening years, however, more and more citizens came to own video recording equipment, and it became imperative for the police to adopt a practice that could protect them from doctored or biased video that could wrongfully incriminate them. Into the 90s, dashcams were ubiquitous in most police cars, and the footage they recorded was a part of the public record, accessible to the producers of COPS with the filing of some relatively simple paperwork.

That show burned the perspective of the dashcam into our collective unconscious, and as the technology got smaller, smarter, and cheaper, manufacturers saw an opportunity in the market for everyday people to make good use of the cameras.

As noted above, the trend exploded in Russia and around Europe, and is becoming more popular in the US. In recent years, public outrage over police abuses caught on municipal dashcams, citizens' cell phones, and other surveillance equipment has increased the gulf of trust between police departments and the neighborhoods they patrol. Community leaders and citizens alike hope that devices like dashcams can bring greater parity and accountability to corrupt systems and broken communities.

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Last updated on July 15, 2017 by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as behind the computer screen, Brett can either be found hacking furiously away at the keyboard or perhaps enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He hopes to one day become a modern day renaissance man.

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