A dash cam is no longer the preserve of the police. More and more people and businesses are waking up to the potential provided by the latest technology.
Perhaps one of the biggest benefactors is the insurance firms. In exchange for lower premiums they gain access to footage of any accident; allowing them to clearly and quickly assess blame.
But you can benefit from a dash cam in other ways as well; not only will it help you to prove your case against an insurance company; you can see people who launch attacks against you, especially any incident of road rage. Recent statistics suggested that 81% of drivers have been the victims of road rage!
It is also an excellent way of reviewing and improving your own driving skills or catching scenes that you would never normally capture.
To select the right dash cam for your needs you will need to consider these things:
The better the quality of your video the easier it will be to use this proof to locate and deal with any attacker; through the proper channels of course.
To ensure you have the best quality images you should choose a dash cam with a minimum of HD 720p. This will ensure you can identify faces and number plates.
Although you can get higher resolutions they will take up more space; limiting the amount of files you can save.
When considering the resolution you should also choose one which has night vision; this will assist you if an incident happens at night.
A rough calculation of the recording time a memory card will provide you with can be calculated by dividing the memory card size in GB by the bit rate of your camera and then multiplying it by 2. This will be slightly less than your actual usage.
In real time this equates to between 1GB and 2GB per hour at 720p. A 32GB card could record between 16 and 32 hours of film.
Your dash cam should turn on when you start your engine and turn off when you switch the engine off. This will ensure that you do not need to remember to turn it on and that it is running when you really need it!
The Size of Your Camera
Not all dash cams are created equal. They can be mounted on the dash or clipped to the mirror. But, wherever you decide to locate it you must consider the size of the camera.
It will be distracting and possibly even exciting at first; the smaller the dash cam the better; keeping you focused on the road.
Some dash cams allow you to choose between loop recording or not. Loop recording refers to the fact that once the memory is full up the camera will start to record over the oldest footage.
Although this means you need to remember to download any important footage quickly, it is safer than simply stopping recording.
Choosing a dash cam with impact sensors will help you feel protected even if your engine is off or you are not with the vehicle. The camera will switch on the moment an impact is detected; helping you to identify what has happened and who was responsible.
Although this is not essential it is a useful feature. GPS tracking confirms your location and the speed you were doing; making it much easier to deal with insurance companies or even speeding tickets which are not actually yours.
The majority of dash cams come with a mount to ensure they are securely fastened to your dashboard. It is possible to get some without a mount but you will probably want to buy a universal mount for it. This should be considered when evaluating the prices of the dash cams.
In many aspects you get what you pay for. However, you should make sure that you are not paying too much by having features you do not need. You can also take advantage of promotions to reduce the price of your purchase. Halfords discount codes offer an excellent way to save money and almost always have an offer of some description in place.
Finally, it is worth considering whether you want a rear facing camera as well. The dash cam will only see things that happen in front of it; not behind. A rear facing camera which can be included in some packs will provide more information regarding any incident.
Selecting the right dash cam does not need to be a difficult decision. In fact, armed with this information, you could make the salesman in your local store do all the work; he will have to deal with your knowledge of the subject while showing you the camera which will most benefit you.
Of course, you can always ask a friend, but this guide provides you with everything you need to know.