Best Dash Cams 2018

Take a look at our picks of the best dash cams 2018Nextbase 612GW

Price: Around £250
Rating: 5.0

All-new for this year, the 612GW is Nextbase’s first 4K cam. The crisp footage puts most rivals to shame. We like how well the camera adjusts to changing light conditions and the depth of the footage; colours are well balanced and the unit captures a good amount of detail.

Number plates were easy to read, while street signs were also clear and easy to spot.  An addiotntial bonus is that the camera’s night vision was good too. While the BlackVue’s recordings are clearer, the Nextbase has a far more attractive price. The interface is intuitive and user friendly while the app is easy to use.

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BlackVue DR900S-1CH

Price: Around £400
Rating: 4.5

The BlackVue DR900S-1CH records the highest-quality footage here. It edged the 612GW on reading plates from far away, while in low light the 162-degree lens picked out hazards better. The BlackVue also features an industry first by being able to upload footage to remote cloud servers. The sleek design means settings have to be changed via the BlackVue app. But the price is a chink in this cam’s armour. 

Buy now from Halfords

Garmin Dash Cam 55 Plus

Price: £149.99 Rating: 4.0

The 55 Plus has many neat features, on top of its attractive price. We liked the mount, where a metal strip is attached to the windscreen for the magnetic dash cam to stick to. This makes it easy to remove. On the move, the polariser adds a level of depth and colour to the footage. The 55 Plus records in 1440p at 30 frames per second and we captured a good amount of detail. Number plates were easy to read from a distance, as were street signs. The Garmin has a slick menu that is easy to use and also comes with a voice-control feature.

Philips ADR820

Price: Around £140
Rating: 4.0

Philips’ ADR820 is cheaper than many rivals, but video quality is still great. The 1296p Super HD footage from the 140-degree lens picked out similar detail to our 1440p cams. Also, the F1.8 aperture was good in low light and the CMOS sensor adjusted exposure well as light changed.

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The 2.7-inch LCD screen was easy to use, although the interfaces on the Nextbase and Garmin were better and they used higher-quality materials. Still, this is a great budget buy.

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RoadEyes recSMART

Price: Around 160 Euros (£141)
Rating: 3.5  

A contender in last year’s test that still impresses. You have to order the recSMART from France, but it captures great footage, with colours highlighted particularly well. It also starred in low light conditions, with the 1440p recording picking up pedestrians and cyclists quickly. There’s no screen so users have to download the RoadEyes phone app. But the software wasn’t as slick as rivals’; we had to exit it occasionally on our Android mobile as it didn’t connect with the cam.

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Garmin 55 dash cam

Price: Around £150
Rating: 3.5 

Like the RoadEyes, Garmin’s dash cam scored well on video quality. The 1440p recording captured lots of detail, even if the BlackVue and Nextbase were better able to pick out plates from distance or spot pedestrians sooner. We like Garmin’s sleek design, the camera feels solid and sturdy and even looks good. Less appealing are the driving assistance systems built in – they often chime in when going over bumps, and we ended up turning them off.

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Thinkware F70

Price: £79
Rating: 3.5

The F70 is a very sleek camera that’s easy to install. There’s no screen to review footage, but the Thinkware PC or Mac Viewer lets users do so via a computer. The Thinkware comes with a relatively wide 140-degree lens compared with similarly priced cams. With 1080p definition at 30 frames per second, the quality of footage was good.

It captured plenty of detail, and Thinkware’s Wide Dynamic Range feature helped adjust the exposure to suit different light levels, reducing glare from the sun. It also added a good level of depth to the footage that helped us better pick out details. Unlike the Mio, the F70 has a parking mode. We found the Thinkware’s 3M sticky-tape mount impressive, too.

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Halfords HDC400

Price: £129
Rating: 3.0 

A decent debut from Halfords. The HDC400 is the range-topping device from the UK retail giant and comes with clear footage that picked out a good amount of detail. The 180-degree lens was the widest we tested, although the 1440p footage wasn’t as crisp as that of rivals. Images of reg plates were sharp from close-up, but at longer distances they turned blurry. The same was true of street signs and details like pedestrians in shadowy areas or in low light conditions. Still, the design feels solid and the Halfords MyHDC app is easy to use.

Buy now from Halfords

Mio MiVue C330

Price: Around £70
Rating: 3.0

Mio’s MiVue C330 is cheaper, but it still impressed us. It was close to the F70 for the quality of its footage, even if it has a narrower lens and lost out a little on the level of detail captured. But there wasn’t much separating these two cameras. We liked the depth of footage, with colours well captured and number plates easy to read.

However, the camera was slightly more affected by light exposure, with the recording suffering more from glare or quick changes to light levels, such as when going through a tunnel. Still, the Mio comes with a screen to review footage; while driving, this doubles as a clock and speedometer. The screen and side buttons also made it easier to adjust settings.

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RoadHawk Vision Super HD

Price: Around £150
Rating: 3.0

Want a sleek dash cam? The RoadHawk Vision is worth a look as it takes up barely any room on the windscreen. The app works well, but rivals here have a better interface. And while RoadHawk’s 1296p Super HD footage was clear, competitiors captured distant number plates more clearly. We felt low-light footage could have been better; glare from oncoming traffic and street lamps affected the camera more than with other devices.

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