Best Dash Cameras in 2017

We have tested numerous dash cameras and published our reviews here and on our YouTube channel. This page is a summary of “what’s best”, “what’s affordable” and “what’s a good value”.

If you want to learn about how to pick a dash camera, you can see our Buyer’s Guide. Otherwise, enjoy the many hours of work condensed into one simple page.

Updates

Sept 26, 2017: Updated camera selections and descriptions. Added A119V2, Viofo G1W-S.

Jan 8th, 2017: Added our latest budget camera roundup

Nov 25th, 2016: Removed the Blackvue DR650GW-2Ch and replaced it with the Thinkware F770 which is a better camera for most drivers

Oct 24, 2016: Added the Vicovation OPIA2 as a new premium camera pick

Aug 1st, 2016: Added the Viofo A119 as our top dash camera pick.

Top 5 Budget Cameras ($100 or Less)

To quickly learn what we think are top budget choices for 2017, please check the video below. Note that this video is a bit old and any updates will be mentioned later in the article. Nevertheless, all of these cameras are still great budget choices.

Best Value for Most Drivers

Viofo A119V2 – $100

The Viofo A119V2 is the updated version of the Viofo A119 we recommended. It has the same heat-resistance, video quality and functionality we thought was essential and adds many improvements and updates.

Like all dash cameras we recommend, it turns on and starts automatically while giving you useful error notifications if you have problems recording. If you’re unsure of what you need, watch our video above and take a look at our other picks. See our written review for more information and places to buy the camera.

See the Price on Amazon (USA/UK)See the Price on eBay (International)

Our Cheap Pick for Cooler Climates

Yi Dash Cam – $50

The Yi Dash Cam has continued to impress with its rock solid stability and performance in the 18 months since it’s been released. The video quality is fantastic. It has WiFi to stream/download saved videos to your smartphone, all for the low price of $50. It’s not our top value pick because of two issues in warm weather. First, it loses focus resulting in a blurry image. Second, it has lithium-ion batteries which can swell and expand. We still recommend the $100 Viofo A119V2 for anyone who can afford it, but the Yi is an amazing choice for drivers in cooler climates (<25°C).

Get it on Amazon (USA/CA) Get it on Amazon (UK)

Most Affordable Hot Weather Camera

Transcend DrivePro 200 – $120

Transcend Drive Pro 200 Dash Camera Overhead

Transcend designed the DrivePro 200 for drivers in hot environments. The 200 has a solid history of working in hot environments backed up by Transcend’s two-year warranty. Its biggest downside is the just acceptable video quality. However, to get a heat-resistant upgrade, you’ll be paying $200+ for the Vicovation OPIA2. If you don’t live in hot conditions, there are much better choices.

Read our full Transcend DP200 Review

See the Price on Amazon (USA/UK)

The best $60 camera for warm weather

Viofo G1W-S – $55

The Viofo G1W-S has replaced our previous $60 recommendations – the A118C and the A118C2. Viofo upgraded the hardware and quality control. We think this is the best $60 camera for warmer temperatures. But, one major issue is the poor error notifications as it’s hard to know when your camera has problems recording. We would only buy this camera if you can’t afford our $100 picks.

$55 from eBay (estore009)

Premium Dash Camera Recommendations

Our premium picks start at $200+ and give you better performance, reliability and often accompanied by better customer service. Watch the video below to learn the benefits of paying more.

Vicovation Opia 2 – $250

The best dash camera

Update: Vicovation has released the OPIA1, a big upgrade to the OPIA2. The OPIA1 improves the video quality by using a Sony Starvis sensor and adds a larger aperture f/1.4 lens. Wifi was also added to download/stream record videos. This camera now has everything we want in a dash camera

After searching for a camera we can recommend to all drivers, it’s the OPIA2. It nails all the essentials of a great dash camera. The OPIA2 amazing video quality, heat resistance up to 75°C/167°F for hot & humid environments and finally a good parking mode.

While there are personal preferences around shape, stealthiness, we wouldn’t hesitate to use this camera in hotter weather.

Read our Vicovation OPIA2 Review

See the OPIA2’s Price on Amazon

Thinkware F770-2CH – $400

Top Parking Mode Camera

Updates: We recently purchased Thinkware’s next-generation camera the F800. It has a new processor and STARVIS sensor for improved low-light quality. The upcoming F800 pro is the more interesting model as supports larger SD cards (128GB), live-tracking features, stealthier look and energy saving modes. You can consider getting these cameras if you were thinking of purchasing the F770.

The Thinkware F770 is a great choice for front/back recording of your vehicle in parking lots. It has some of the best quality for dual channel systems, low energy usage, and a supportive dealer network.

Its black body is specifically designed for the North American market to be stealthy. It also incorporates a thermal protection sensor which shuts down the camera when it’s over 75°C. As well it uses 23% less energy than the Blackvue DR650GW-2CH which means you can record for longer.

The downside of all dual channel cameras system is the video quality relative to cost. It’s a $400 system, but it doesn’t come close to the video quality of the $100 Vifo A119. It is easier to install as everything is included except the microSD. As well it has Thinkware’s history of exceptional quality control which means better reliability.

Read our Thinkware F770 Review

Use coupon code “carcamcentral20” for $20 off your order of $400 or more

$360 from BlackboxMyCar See the Price on Amazon

Choosing the Right SD Card

Certain SD cards have better durability which is important as dash cameras put a lot of wear and tear on the memory card which can cause it to fail over time. Certain features like MLC memory are important, but it’s not obvious what to purchase. We wrote up a guide and made a video which goes in detail and explains our recommendations.

We have three quick recommendations

Transcend64GB

Transcend High Endurance


Our Pick

Our top recommendation is Transcend’s High Endurance line. Optimized for dash cameras and has error correction codes which may factor into it’s long history of reliable performance.

See the Price on Amazon

Transcend 400X

Budget Recommendation

This is our budget recommendation. We now recommend Transcend’s 400X even though you lose the warranty when used in dash cameras. The 400X is recommended by a number of manufacturers we trust including Vicovation & Street Guardian – both design cameras for hot weather. The 400X has a better history of reviews compared to other alternatives. It also has error correction codes we think contribute to its great durability. We could not find a good alternative with a warranty that had a history of use with dash cameras (Samsung voids warranty).

See the Price on Amazon
Sandisk_Endurance_64GB

Sandisk High Endurance

Alternative – Transcend High Endurance

Sandisk has their own dash cam specific memory cards. Its ratings have been excellent on Amazon in the 2 years since it has been released. As well it’s often cheaper and has better availability than the Transcend High Endurance around the world. While Transcend’s card has better lifespan we think the Sandisk card is still a great choice.

See the Price on Amazon
Notes about other SD cards: These are the only three SD cards we felt comfortable recommending. Other SD card manufacturers like Samsung, Adata, Toshiba, Kingston have also stepped into the market, but don’t have a long enough history of reliability when used in dash cameras for us to recommend them. Samsung EVO cards have been used more and more in dash cams and Kingston’s industrial line of SD cards might be good for dash cams, but we don’t have enough convincing data to recommend them yet.

Promising Dash Cameras

Thinkware F800/F800 PRO

F800 - Front Angle

Thinkware’s newest models offer you higher quality videos and better performance. Both models have an upgraded Ambarella A12 processor and improved Sony sensors. The F800 isn’t a big upgrade over the F770, and the new silver paint design might not be as stealthy, but still, improved hardware might be a worthy investment.

The upcoming F800 Pro is interesting. It sports a more discreet, black matte look and supports up to 128GB SD cards. Most importantly, Thinkware has finally presented long awaited “cloud” features in their camera. Before the F800 Pro their main competition in Blackvue was one step ahead when it came to innovation, but now both of these companies and their clients can compare which of the companies does a better job.

Get it on Amazon

Vicovation Opia 1 WiFi

Opia1 - Front Angle

The lauded Opia 2 model has been a perfect camera for many users. It is heat resistant, records great quality videos and rotates for that additional coverage. A major drawback for some users was the lack of WiFi in the Opia 2 model. That is not a problem anymore. The new Opia 1 WiFi now has WiFi features to embellish a product that’s great already. Guys from Vicovation have upgraded lens to 7G, improved an aperture at f/1.4 and narrowed the viewing angle to 145 degrees. 1080p max quality is a down, but added WiFi and upgraded hardware still make up for a great premium camera.

See the price on eBay

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97 Comments on "Best Dash Cameras in 2017"

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John D
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I’d like to buy something like a home security system: a central dash cam control module with all the customary features, but the cameras are separate from the control module. That would help me with protection from theft and the elements (I run topless for 6-8 months a year), would be much more discreet, would allow me to put a high quality video camera in front and lower quality cameras elsewhere, etc.

This seems like a fairly niche market but surely someone has made such a product.

John D
Guest

This seems like what I want: http://raytis.com/DX1/

Mark L
Guest

First time to get a dash cam. I am looking for a dash cam that I can record continuously for only parking for 8 hours. I’ll probably try 2 a119 front and rear. My main question is if I can power them with a high capacity power bank instead of powering them to the car power? Anyone doing this??? I haven’t seen a actual video with proof that it can last. Anyone have any suggestions? I’m thinking of getting a Anker 26800 bank to power one a119 camera.

Alex
Guest
I’d like to recommend the Lukas LK-7500. It’s only $140 on Amazon-US right now. I’ve had one for a year and I’m very happy with it. Pros – GPS is standard, built into the base – Stealthy design (though it doesn’t look it out of the box, mounted in the car you can barely see it) – Transistor power instead of lithium ion battery – Quick startup time, < 10 sec – Excellent video quality, despite the max setting being only 11 mbps at 1920×1080 – Buffered video recording (10 seconds before and 30 seconds after) – Full parking mode – Full-size SD card slot, much more reliable than microSD cards – 3m long power cable and comes with wire clips Cons – No screen. Settings are set via a file located on the SD card, which can be accessed by downloading Lukas’s proprietary software (PC only) – Minimal customization… Read more »
Alex
Guest

One additional thing. Most dash cams can’t take more than a 32GB memory card. I have a 128 GB Transcend SD card in my Lukas and it’s glorious.

Lambro
Guest
I just bought a Xiaoyi Yi car cam three days ago. Before that, I knew nothing about car cams. Among the reviews both video and prints I have seen over the internet, it is your video review of Yi that convinced me to get it. Why? Your video highlights a feature which is crucial for me and I must have it, that is, the Yi can be turned 360 degrees. The feature would enable me to turn it around to capture someone approaching me ( driver) or front passenger from either side windows. Lots of crazy things happening nowadays, you can never know. Other reasons for getting the Yi – it is available here in Malaysia and night time video quality. Some Best Buys and Value for Money car cams in your recommendation are not available here. The Yi has two models – mine 165 degrees angle of view and… Read more »
Della
Guest

What about Möbius 2 camera?

Daren
Guest
Hello Andrew. Great reviews, bye the way. I want to buy one or two car cameras to cover both front and rear; I drive along narrow, winding country roads here in the UK to work early, including in winter when it’s dark, and find many oncoming drivers encroaching onto my side of the road, nearly clipping my car, and many impatient drivers tailgaiting, driving aggressively behind. In winter, the rear camera would ideally see registration/licence plates even though headlights are used, but this is probably too much to ask. I don’t mind two cameras too much if the registration number evidence is better – a little inconvenience, but also if one breaks then it’s only that one I have to replace. I’ve been interested in your reviews of the 2 channel Thinkware F770 ($270) and the Viofo a119 (£75) and a119s (£100). Obviously, if I wanted two of the single… Read more »
lee
Guest

Daren
Believe Thinkware…be the number one and biggest in Korea..They were the first
Korea and Taiwan are where the Best cams come from…..90 per cent of koreans have dash cams,,,priority.
Thinkware has all you need for a top quality cam..next would be Lukas, Qvia….TOP SHELF …High End
,note/ never get 2 channel dash cams, too much for processor and demenished vid…get two separate cams,,,much better..Rexing good for rear view,,,or THINKWARE F50 for example
I like thinkware x330

Alex
Guest

Hi Andrew, would you recommend the VicoVation OPIA2 for use in the winters of the GTA? It’s official operating temperature range is 0C to 75C so I’m worried it won’t work in the winter when it gets to < -10C (car parked outside).

Windmill
Guest

Thank you for some very well researched and informative information.
Getting rid of my 6-yr old $69 unit which has reverted to selective recording, usually AM only.

DDpai M6+ appears to be a reasonably made camera with quality video, both day and night.

Would love to hear your opinion.

Ken

Guest
Guest

Hello Andrew, Please can you give some advise on the Pros and Cons between the DR650S-2CH and the Thinkware F770? Struggling to decide between the 2 of them

Heath
Guest

Hey mate
wanted to ask your thoughts
DDPai mini 2 or M4 +
Goluk T range
XiaoYi (XiaoMi) Yi
I am trying to pick but I cant 🙁

lee
Guest

Get a korean cam…much better…do the research

https://dashcamtalk.com/dash-cam-manufacturers/

Heath
Guest

what would you say has the better picture?
DDPai mini 2 or M4 +
Goluk T range

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