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The 10 Best Dash Cameras for Road Trips [2023]

Amar Hussain's image
Amar Hussain

Amar Hussain

Senior Content Contributor

Countries Visited: 63U.S. States Visited: 9

Amar is an avid traveler and tester of products. He has spent the last 13 years traveling all 7 continents and has put the products to the test on each of them. He has contributed to publications incl...
Edited by: Keri Stooksbury

Keri Stooksbury

Editor-in-Chief

Countries Visited: 41U.S. States Visited: 28

With years of experience in corporate marketing and as the Executive Director of the American Chamber of Commerce in Qatar, Keri is now Editor-in-Chief at UP, overseeing daily content operations and r...

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Whether you commute to work or you enjoy going on road trips, you probably spend a lot of time in your car. So, you’ve likely encountered a situation where it feels like you don’t have enough eyes to keep track of everything on the road.

That’s why dash cameras can be so useful. They help you keep an eye on the road and record evidence of your drive if you ever need it.

Things To Consider With Dash Cameras

Dash cameras help you keep an eye on the road and record evidence of your drive. Image Credit: Amar Hussain

While you probably already know that not all dash cameras are the same, you might not realize just how different they can be.

There are numerous characteristics that can slightly change a camera, making it your first or last choice. Here are a few things to consider.

Size and Weight

The size and weight of a dash camera should be considered before you buy one. Generally, dash cameras are small, so they won’t obstruct your vision or take up too much room in your car.

However, “small” can be vague. Some cameras will easily fit in the palm of your hand and won’t weigh more than a typical smartphone.

Other cameras might be a little larger and heavier, depending on their lenses, strengths, or screen sizes. Make sure the camera you get isn’t too large or heavy for your dashboard.

Memory and Storage

Device storage is easier to access, while cloud storage has more available space. Image Credit: Amar Hussain

You should also consider the way a dash camera stores its video feed before you decide on which one to purchase.

If you want a camera that records video, you’ll need to find out if the feed is stored on the camera, in a memory card installed in the camera, or if it’s saved on a cloud server.

Both of these storage methods have merit. Device storage is easier to access. Cloud storage has more available space. You’ll have to decide which storage and memory method is most convenient for you.

Recording Quality

Opt for a camera with an HD camera option or higher megapixels. Image Credit: Amar Hussain

Like all cameras, dash cameras can have varying recording quality. If you want to have a clear image in your camera, you’ll want to opt for a camera with an HD camera option or higher megapixels.

However, having a crystal-clear video isn’t always necessary, so you can find cameras that will provide a lower-quality feed that is still suitable for your needs.

Hot Tip: You should also note that the recording quality for all dash cameras tends to degrade naturally over time. This can affect the longevity of your dash camera.

Rules and Laws

Before you buy a dash camera, you need to make sure you know the rules of the state and/or country you live in.

Generally, dash cameras are built to fall within the laws, however, some places may not allow them or may have requirements as to their size or capabilities.

It’s also important to know that different U.S. states, for example, may have different laws. So, if you plan to drive across the country, you’ll need to check the rules for every state you’ll drive through before packing your camera.

Filming Range

You should determine the filming range you want from your dash camera. Image Credit: Amar Hussain

You should also determine the filming range you want from your dash camera before you make your final decision.

Are you just concerned with catching what is happening in front of your car on film? Do you also want to see what is happening inside the car while your eyes are on the road? Or, maybe, you want to have a visual of the back of your car?

All of these filming ranges are possible, but they aren’t guaranteed for all cameras. So, you should determine what you want filmed.

The 10 Best Dash Cameras

With the sheer amount of dash cameras on the market, it can be difficult to figure out which one is right for your life.

To make deciding easier for you, we’ve compiled this list of the best cameras on the market, including the pros and cons of each.

1. A Multi-purpose Option

BEST OVERALL: Rove R2- 4K Dash Cam
With this dash camera, you’ll be able to keep an eye on what's going on around your car 24/7. It easily attaches to your car in a secure way.

Rove R2-4K Dash Cam

The Rove dash cam is a great choice for people who want the latest technology while on their drives, without having multiple different devices.

This camera not only serves as a wide-angle lens that allows for broad viewing of what’s happening outside your car, but it also has a built-in GPS tracker.

That way, you can keep track of your trips, always know where you’re going, and never again be caught off guard by what’s happening on the road.

The camera also has built-in Wi-Fi access, so you can stream your video feed directly to your device for viewing or download. The camera also has a 1-year warranty in case of damage.

What We Like:

  • All-in-one option

What We Don’t Like:

  • Not much device memory

2. A Full-spectrum Camera

DISCOUNT: 10%
UPGRADE PICK: Vantrue N4 3 Channel 4K Dash Cam
If you have this dash cam, the front and back of your car will be totally covered. The video recording is high quality. You can also check the feed in real time.

Vantrue N4 3 Channel 4K Dash Cam

If you’re looking for a camera that will allow you to have a practically 360-degree view of the outside of your car, the Vantrue N4 is a viable option you should consider.

This camera has 3 channels that each correspond to an area of the car: front, interior, and rear, which you can switch between easily.

In fact, you can set your camera to show the feeds for the front and rear cameras simultaneously. That way, you know what’s happening in front of and behind your car at any moment.

Not only that, but the outer cameras also provide audio. So, if you hear a screech or honk, you’ll know how to react to avoid an accident.

What We Like:

  • Easy to switch between cameras

What We Don’t Like:

  • Only mounts to windshield

3. A Camera Helper for Tough Parking Spots

DISCOUNT: 40%
WOLFBOX G840S Mirror Dash Cam
A model that's a great option not just for added security but also as a fantastic and practical tool. This camera has night vision, and it can help you with your parking.

WOLFBOX 12“ Mirror Dash Cam Backup Camera

The Wolfbox mirror camera is the perfect dash camera for people whose main concern is clearly seeing what’s going on behind their car.

In fact, this model is designed to help you get into difficult parking spots without worrying you’ll bump into something. However, that’s not the only perk of this camera. You also get a front view feed, as well, so you can be completely aware of your surroundings.

The camera even has night vision capabilities, so you can see what’s going on outside your car at any hour, day or night. It also comes equipped with GPS to help you keep track of your journey.

What We Like:

  • Comes with a memory card

What We Don’t Like:

  • Parking mode can be inconsistent

4. A Small but Mighty Dash Camera

DISCOUNT: 23%
Garmin Dash Cam Mini 2
There's not much this mighty little camera can't do. It has activation sensors, it's WiFi-enabled, and it's got the GPS features that people have come to trust from the Garmin company.

Garmin Dash Cam Mini 2

Garmin has long been a trusted company when it comes to travel tech. Their dash cam mini is no different.

This camera is tiny, even by dash camera standards. It’s around the size of a smartphone. However, its small size doesn’t affect its power or your ability to view your camera feed. It still has a large screen, and it’s able to monitor your car even when you’re not in it, thanks to its parking mode setting.

The camera also has a voice command setting, so you can operate it completely hands-free for safe driving. If you miss something while driving, that’s not a problem. Your recording gets automatically backed up to a secure cloud server.

What We Like:

  • Small size

What We Don’t Like:

  • Formatting an SD card can be tricky

5. A Dash Camera Built for Security

Nexar Pro Dual Dash Cam
No matter what sort of trip you're on, you'll be able to keep an eye on the road easily with this little camera. It has 32 GB of internal memory in addition to the live feed.

Nexar Pro Dual Dash Cam

If you’re in the market for a dash camera that doubles as a surveillance camera, the Nexar model is a good choice.

This camera has an optimal parking mode setting that allows you to see what’s going on in and around your vehicle, even when you’re not in the driver’s seat.

All you have to do is access the camera’s built-in Wi-Fi feed on your phone or computer, and you’ll be able to see if anything strange is happening inside or outside your car.

You don’t have to worry about the camera losing battery too quickly in this mode, either. It will continue to record video as long as it’s plugged into a power source.

What We Like:

  • Great for security

What We Don’t Like:

  • No infrared night vision

6. A Low-cost but High-quality Camera

Vantrue N1 Pro Mini Dash Cam
This dash camera is a simple model to control. It's intuitive, especially once you've gotten used to it. It has a responsive touchscreen, as well, for fast adjusting while on the road.

Vantrue N1 Pro Mini Dash Cam

If you’re on a budget but you still want a high-quality dash camera that won’t fall apart days after you get it set up, the Vantrue pro might be your ideal choice.

This cost-effective camera still manages to compete with more expensive options in the areas where it counts.

This camera is compact and lightweight, so it won’t take up much room on your dashboard or windshield. However, it still has a lot of power packed into it.

It has a motion sensor activation setting which allows you to avoid any collisions on the road. It also has a parking mode setting that can last up to 24 hours for maximum security.

What We Like:

  • A lot of features for a low-cost

What We Don’t Like:

  • Small screen

7. An Intuitive Camera for Road Trips

DISCOUNT: 23%
Dash Camera for Cars
The lens of this camera is surprisingly wide, which allows you to get a good look at what's happening around you on the road or while you're in a parking lot.

Dash Camera for Cars

This dash camera is a good option for people who don’t want to continuously monitor their camera and its settings.

Equipped with a motion sensor, it can go into a sort of stand-by mode until something is close enough to activate it. That means you don’t have to worry about a thing as long as your camera’s monitor is off … that just means there’s no danger of hitting something.

It also has loop recording available if you want to be able to double-check your video feed. That’s particularly handy for its parking mode, so you can double-check that your car was safe while you were away. It’s a durable camera meant to give you peace of mind.

What We Like:

  • Water-resistant

What We Don’t Like:

  • The battery isn’t easily replaced

8. A Navigation Camera To Get You Places

DISCOUNT: 11%
AZDOME M550 Dash Cam 3 Channel
You can access your camera's feed directly on your phone. It's a great way to make sure your car and your belongings are safe while you're staying in unfamiliar places.

AZDOME M550 Dash Cam

The AZDOME dash camera model is a good option for people who also want all the ease of traveling with a GPS without having a separate device taking up room.

The camera has built-in Wi-Fi, so it won’t have any trouble updating your map and journey trajectory to get you where you need to go.

Not only that, but it will also keep track of the road in front of and behind your vehicle. That way, you can focus on the road without worrying that something might jump out all of a sudden.

The camera is even water-resistant, so splashes or rain won’t damage your camera. It’s also built to withstand both high and low temperatures.

What We Like:

  • All-weather appropriate

What We Don’t Like:

  • Mount can be hard to move

9. A Dash Camera Option That Tracks Your Info

DISCOUNT: 22%
Kingslim D5-4K Dash Cam with WiFi
This camera captures video in 4K, which leads to crystal-clear images. You can also track your journey's progress through the GPS technology that's built into the camera's system and its support app.

Kingslim D5-4K Dash Cam

The Kingslim dash camera is the choice for you if you want a camera that tracks your information so that you can easily keep records of it.

This camera keeps track of your speed and your location, which you can use for anything from figuring out how long it takes to get somewhere to using it as evidence in case of an accident.

The camera also has low-light night vision. So, no matter what time you’re on the road, your camera will still be able to capture what’s going on, keeping you in the know.

The camera also has a motion sensor during its parking mode, so you will have video evidence if anything bumps your car.

What We Like:

  • Accurate tracker

What We Don’t Like:

  • Not compatible with all SD cards

10. A Camera Option That Gives You Peace of Mind

DISCOUNT: 30%
VIOFO Powered Dashboard Camera
This camera has everything you need to stay safe on the road. Once you have it installed, you can be sure it won't go anywhere until you remove it yourself.

VIOFO Dash Cam 2K WiFi 1440P

If your main reason for getting a dash camera is so you can relax and drive in peace, you should consider this model by VIOFO. This camera has all the features you need to drive stress-free.

It has a wide-angle lens that lets you get a near-complete view of what’s going on around your car. This feature can also be used even in the middle of the night on dark roads, thanks to the camera’s night vision capabilities.

It offers a rear view of your car that can help you park confidently without damaging your vehicle or anything else that might be around. You can also use voice commands with the camera, letting you keep your hands on the wheel for safe travels.

What We Like:

  • High resolution

What We Don’t Like:

  • Wi-Fi connection is a bit slow

Final Thoughts

Buying any technology can be overwhelming, and that’s particularly true when buying a dash camera. An ideal camera will allow you to be able to see what is happening on the road outside your car. However, countless features could impact how useful a camera is to you.

Hopefully, our list has helped you decide what characteristics you want in your dashboard camera so that you can buy the right one.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are dash cameras worth it?

Dash cameras are worth purchasing if you struggle to keep track of the road or if you worry about knowing what’s happening around your vehicle.

Are dash cameras legal?

In many places, dash cameras are completely legal. However, privacy laws might be a cause for concern. Before you purchase a dash camera, it’s advised you check your local laws to make sure you can actually use your device. The same advice applies to other places where you’ll be driving.

What are dash cameras for?

Dash cameras are used for a variety of reasons. They can help you park or keep an eye on all areas of your car. They can be used for security. They can also be used to keep track of evidence of any car accidents you might have on the road.

Do dash cameras record all the time?

Most dash cameras have options that allow you to decide when they record. Some are motion activated or might record on a timer. Others might only record when manually switched on and stop when switched off. Typically, however, you can control the settings for when your camera records or doesn’t.

About Amar Hussain

Amar is an avid traveler and tester of products. He has spent the last 13 years traveling all 7 continents and has put the products to the test on each of them. He has contributed to publications including Forbes, the Huffington Post, and more.

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