Dash cams were only reserved for police cars. However, they are currently becoming increasingly popular among civilian drivers. Installed onto a vehicle’s windshield, a dash cam continuously records both audio and video to a memory card.

Rearview mirror with dash camera

Some vehicle owners install rear-facing dash cams as well. Dash cams are increasingly becoming popular for one main reason, which is security.

However, they also offer recreational benefits. For instance, motorists can capture and record their adventures, including memorable road trips with friends or family members. When it comes to security, these small video cameras can offer photographic evidence for an incident like vandalism or an accident.

Similar to other digital tools and solutions in the automobile industry, dash cameras are evolving quickly, with several features being incorporated to make them meet the unique needs of customers. If you’re after the best dash cam, be sure to look out for the following top five features.

Parking Mode

The value of a dashboard camera varies on a number of aspects. Its capability to record when the car isn’t in motion is one of the most important aspects to look out for. Parking mode is important as it ensures your car’s safety when it’s unoccupied. Some top cameras actually create a time-lapse to help minimize a video size.

They record a single frame per second to continuously record what is happening in and around your car. These modern cameras can automatically generate a time-lapse video or audio recording to capture important data, especially at night.

When you leave the car, let’s say, to rush into a nearby restaurant or mall, the dashboard camera goes to sleep instead of turning itself off. While this helps it to draw little power from the car’s battery, saving energy, the dashboard camera wakes up when it senses motion and starts recording.

That means you can have video or audio evidence when someone dings or hits your car or tries to break in. With some Wi-Fi models, the owner of the vehicle can be notified on a mobile application in real-time.

Mobile App Support

The latest dash cams have Bluetooth or Wi-Fi to connect to the smartphones of car owners. If your dashboard doesn’t connect wirelessly to a smartphone, you’re required to playback video footage on the tiny screen, which is, in most cases, about two inches. You may also pull out the camera and then play it back on your TV or PC, which could be a real hassle.

Instead, a dash camera, which is Wi-Fi-enabled, allows you to download or stream any video footage to a nearby tablet or smartphone to share or view any incident you want conveniently. While some limitations exist in Bluetooth-enabled dash cams, some sharing is possible with tablets or smartphones.

GPS and Speed Logging

Video and audio capture is a vital feature to consider. However, the capability to isolate a point on a map where an incident took place will significantly enhance the expediency and usefulness of your video footage.

While serving to indicate the latest speed, the GPS also logs location data. The GPS coordinates don’t need to be overlayed on the video footage, provided they’re embedded in the file. Depending on the model, the GPS can be built in. However, others need a separate unit.

Some video models allow users to hide or display the overlay speed data from the videos. You can view your GPS data on a map via your mobile phone or the camera’s tiny screen.

Dual-Lens Cameras

Instead of a camera that swivels around or a single front-facing one, these models feature two cameras. One can face inside the car while the other looks out the rear window. The front-facing camera may detect the incident if you get rear-ended and stamp the location and date through GPS. However, it may not capture what is taking place behind you.

For example, it may not record the license plate in incidents like hit and run. Perfect for ride-hailing motorists, the second camera helps record everything that happens inside your car, including an illegal activity or altercation with passengers. It can also capture conversations if the authorities pulling it over.

Are you after a high quality dash cam? Be sure to look for these features when shopping for your next camera.

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