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Dash cams are becoming an increasingly useful and necessary aspect of road and parking safety all over the country. Whether it is providing quality evidence for insurance claims, protecting your vehicle in public parking places, or providing a user-friendly recording of trips throughout the year, a GoPro dash cam is a cost-effective way to improve your driving experience and prevent future crisis’ from occurring.
A dash cam specifically is a camera noted for its size and ability to integrate with your car’s internal operating system. They record and save footage at manageable sizes and offer users easy access to video material from the dash and occasionally the rear of your vehicle.
The market for cameras is growing in many directions. There’s a temptation to use camera technology from other sectors and apply it to dash cams. Enter the concept of the GoPro Dash Cam. GoPro is considered an ‘action cam’ and lives up to this title by providing a compact, durable and high quality recording option for extreme sports and activities of all kinds.
As a compact, mountable and user-friendly camera option, the GoPro can also be used as a dash cam. In this article, we will explore the GoPro Dash Cam option and compare it to existing dash cams.
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What Is the GoPro Dash Cam?
A GoPro Dash Cam is as simple as it sounds. Using many of the readily available mounts and resources for the variety of GoPro cameras, the GoPro Dash Cam is a GoPro of any iteration mounted to the dash of your car.
Unlike cameras designed to be dash cams, a GoPro Dash Cam would require the operator to turn the camera on and off when entering the car and would not respond directly to impact. It would also record excessively high-resolution footage designed more for editorial than simple evidence-based purpose most dash cameras are used for.
As with most re-purposed products, many follies come with using the GoPro in this regard, and the few positives you gain are hard to apply as a counterbalance to the negatives.
There are many iterations of GoPro, so today we’ll just lay out aspects that are universally applicable to GoPro cameras of any make:
The GoPro is built for high-resolution recording in a durable housing. This means all GoPro cameras can shoot 1920×1080 HD footage with a variety of shooting modes. Every model offers waterproof, shockproof and coldproof housings for all degrees of shooting duress.
Although none come with built-in screens, many can either be fitted with a small review screen or can be tethered to your phone for review. Newer models can also be controlled from your phone to avoid the clunky and frustrating button system that can be the source of so many headaches for shooters the world over.
GoPros are backed by the increasingly popular GoPro brand and in turn, have an incredible array of support products like mounts, screens, and housings.
Meanwhile, the regular product updates mean there is a ton of dated GoPros scattered across second-hand purchasing mediums and could easily be converted to a GoPro Dash Cam.
How It Compares
A GoPro Dash Cam is an interesting option but would be fruitless to describe without comparing the option with the litany of other dash cams available on the market. We took three leading dash cams which are:
- Garmin Dash Cam 55
- Mobius Action cam
- Rexing V1
GoPro Dash Cam
Comparatively, a GoPro Dash Cam stands out amongst the rest in price, not just for the cost of the camera, but as well for all the additional hardware, you will need to purchase for it. The GoPro action camera starts at $200, and costs grow outwardly from there.
Ease of Use
The GoPro even as a recording camera is a frustrating device to navigate. Three buttons cycle through a list of options on a screen the size of a thumbnail. So, you can only discern the settings based on the interpretation of what each of the micro pictures represents.
Some offer Bluetooth tethering, but again that’s a bit of work when you’re behind the wheel of a car and trying to manage your footage from your phone. Meanwhile, there’s no built-in review screen, so watching from your phone or buying an added screen component are the only ways to ensure you are recording what you mean to.
The GoPro itself is largely an easy device to set up in any case, but adapting all of its features and designs to a vehicle means jerry-rigging your method and interpretation for how this should look. There is no ‘GoPro Dash Cam’ market item so fitting the GoPro in this method is, however, you feel works best, which can make for either a short or very long assembly time.
The GoPro is a market champion for cameras because its design for users is incredible, but attempting to apply it as a GoPro Dash Cam means once again retrofitting it for a purpose it was otherwise not designed for. This means a black mark when compared to cameras that were specifically designed for this market.
GoPro is a strong company for warranties, but applying this camera as a GoPro Dash Cam means stretching the intended meaning of this camera and potentially means voiding warranties this camera might otherwise be eligible for.
- Widely available secondhand options
- High Quality Footage
- Fun shooting options for creative applications
- No accelerometer for impact recording, meaning all recording must be manually activated
- High definition footage means space is taken up very quickly
- No recording for break-ins
- No built-in GPS for Grand Theft Auto situations
- No voice activation
- No Driver Alerts
- Night lighting is not the greatest
- No LCD Screen
Garmin Dash Cam 55
In every market, there is the layman option, and then there is a premium option. The Garmin Dash Cam 55 is the premium Dash Cam choice and if you are willing to pay a higher list price, is the most exciting dash cam available on our list.
With incredible recording quality and an amazing array of video record options all available through the use of the exceptional voice command selection, the GoPro Dash Cam and other options are all struggling to compete with this exceptional addition to the dash cam market.
For around $200, you’re paying close to the same price for a GoPro, which isn’t a lot but is by no stretch even close to the cheaper options available on this list.
Ease of Use
Voice commands, as well as automatic activation, features each listed on a built-in touchscreen make the Garmin Dash Cam 55 among the most user-friendly option available. Meanwhile, with user-friendly time lapse options and sharing that is simple and fast, people will love the interface of this incredible camera.
Simply stick the camera to your windshield via the adherent joint head and plug into your car and away you go. There may be some setup stages with the voice command but nothing challenging to do.
Hands-Free voice command keeps the driver safe in all capacities while an included LCD screen helps you see exactly what you are recording. Meanwhile, with driver assist functions like unintended lane change alerts and lane moving alerts, drivers enjoy not only a quality camera but a device that constantly promotes better driving across the board.
Amazon doesn’t offer a clear warranty option and buying directly from Garmin can have varying results, so this camera doesn’t specifically stand out for its warranty package.
- Incredible 1440p Footage
- Easy-to-use voice control
- User-Friendly content Sharing
- Troublesome night time shooting
- No listed warranty
For a cheap yet effective option, the Mobius ActionCam has everything a dash cam user could want with extra. Not as luxury as the Garmin Dash Cam 55 nor as HD friendly as the GoPro Dash Cam, the Mobius offers quality 1080p footage with a simple interface and a discrete body size. At just under $70, it’s one of the most affordable cameras on this list.
Ease of Use
No nonsense as this camera is, it lacks an LCD screen, and any of the exciting voice-activated interface of the Garmin or GoPro dash cam and as a result can be somewhat troubling to activate and use.
Without many working parts or features, it means you just plug in, and away you go with this little camera.
This camera’s abilities as a dash cam come as a clear afterthought. As a result, the camera itself can feel lacking compared to our other cameras. No LCD screen, Bluetooth interface or voice command means you just press record and hope it works. Meanwhile, no accelerometers mean shaky footage and not crash or impact starting features.
There is no clear or listed warranty for this camera
- Tiny and convenient size
- Affordable price tag
- Easy to use
- No voice command
- No accelerometer
- No LCD screen
For a camera that can do almost everything without breaking the bank, the Rexing V1 is an enormously powerful competitor to the GoPro Dash Cam option and most dash camera options on this list. With built-in crash-recording technology and loop recording features, this camera is easy to use for any degree of techy and casual driver alike.This is just a little more than the Mobius at around $90 but significantly cheaper than the GoPro Dash Cam option.
Ease of Use
Without voice command, it falls a little short of our Garmin option, but with a built-in LCD screen and many automated features, it’s still an incredibly easy camera to work with.
Adhere the camera to your windshield, plug it in and away you go!
The only detraction this camera gets is the lack of voice control technology, which would be exceptionally useful.
No listed warranty for this device.
- Exceptionally reasonable price
- High quality footage
- Reliable automatic features
- No voice command
- SD card not included
- Creative functions are lacking
When searching for a dash camera, considering a GoPro Dash Camera option is in most cases the worst option.
Comparatively, it is as expensive as the Garmin Dash Cam 55 but offers exceptionally less in the range of features. It has no voice command options, no automated record features, frustrating controls and mounts that are not specifically designed to remain as a permanent feature in any car.
Meanwhile, the GoPro being an obvious and expensive camera makes the item a welcome target for would-be thieves and passersby who may not otherwise recognize or bother with other cameras available on the market. If you’ve got the money, there is no reason not to allocate it to the Garmin Dash Cam 55 over a GoPro Dash Cam for ease of use and creative options that match the GoPro.
Meanwhile, if you are interested in saving a bit of money, the Rexing V1 can offer all the features you could want for a dash cam at nearly half of the cost of a GoPro Dash Cam. In short, you can do better than a GoPro for your dash cam needs.