What up-to-date dashcam should I consider now I’m in the market for one?

dj_efk

A2OC Donor
We haven’t had a recent thread like this so thought I would solicit recent experiences / feedback.

I am of the opinion that a dashcam is essential in today’s environment to provide hard evidence of the true events of / leading up to an incident should the worst happen to you. As @timmus will at some point in the near future be working on my A2 soon, I was thinking a hardwire kit installation would be simple to do at the same time.

My requirements of any dashcam and how it should be installed are as follows:
  1. Front and rear recording;
  2. Excellent quality footage, regardless of whether broad daylight or in the dead of night (including not being phased by headlamp glare etc.) - after all, accidents happen at night too!
  3. Easy to use with no manual intervention needed: Automatically records when switched on or when it detects movement if the car is parked, overwrites oldest footage when the card is full etc.
  4. Easily able to download the footage, ideally onto my phone without taking the card out!
  5. Very discreet when installed; especially from the outside - I don’t want it’s presence advertised to any passing (oxygen) thieves;
  6. Must not block my field of vision - I’m worried that some cameras will have to be mounted too low down and hence visually get in the way due to the position of the rear view mirror, which on Merlin is an auto-dimming version if that makes a difference. I wonder whether this would be an issue with the Nextbase one I link to below...

I don’t mind spending some money on a good brand and model - for our Touran I splashed out on a pukka Nextbase setup with excellent image quality plus lots of bells and whistles; and as they have a deal on, I’m happy to again if no better options present themselves. However, as I’ve not yet returned to the U.K. and actually had the chance to drive the Touran and appreciate either the car or the dashcam therein, I wonder whether any of the lesser known manufacturers have a product that’s just as good but perhaps doesn’t have all of the neat features that I may not need / use anyway?

Here is the Nextbase camera I bought for the Touran: LINK

I’m also happy to consider models that have a rear view cam built into the rear “main” unit that look through the gap in the rear headrests to save a little on cost (on the Touran this isn’t an option due to the rear seats / passengers blocking the view and also the car is much longer, so I went for the separate camera mounted on the rear window with a hardwire kit running under the headlining on one side to the front camera - As the A2’s dimensions are tiny by comparison and as it’s a four seater, this won’t be a problem). The Nextbase has a neat module available as an upgrade that slots into the side of the camera for this.

So my question is, are there any alternatives out there that you’ve bought recently that are as good?
 
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id personally go for the one you've already linked, you know the quality already some are made to look sound the part but in reality when you get it there poor quality
 

Proghound

Admin Team
I was interested in dashcams a few years back and joined the DashCamTalk forum. NextBase didn't have a particularly good reputation to say the least, although they may be better now. For quality components and unit longevity, regularly updated firmware and superb customer service, the popular consensus on that forum was a brand you'll never have heard of, called StreetGuardian. The company is Australian I think and as you can imagine, manufacturing takes place in China. The MD was/is a regular contributor, under the username "Jokiin". There is a UK/Eire agent "Niko" who is similarly responsive, he's in Dublin and sells online as "HiNiko". But while you're still out in Singapore you may be able to pick one up more locally, to fit when you get to the UK.
 

dj_efk

A2OC Donor
id personally go for the one you've already linked, you know the quality already some are made to look sound the part but in reality when you get it there poor quality
Thanks Sean, I'm tempted to but thought I'd check in on whether I'm overspending here first. I'm also worried about it being in my line of sight due to the rear view mirror as above, perhaps I need to look at some other peoples' photos of their dash cams in place!


I have two of these.

First one I got was around 18 months ago, very impressed so got another for the other car.
Checkout Techmoans YouTube channel, he has done a great review of the set up.
Will do - thanks for the recommendation. Do you have a pic of it in place as above?
 

timmus

A2OC Donor
A quick interjection from me...

Getting additional cabling into the tailgate of the A2 is an utter nightmare. I'm talking about doing it properly, with the additional cables fed through the rubber concertina conduits. This is the greatest barrier to fitting reversing camera and rear-facing dashcams. This is probably worth taking into account when choosing an appropriate dashcam package.

Cheers,

Tom
 

johnyfartbox

A2OC Donor
Fully agree Tom, the cable to the rear cam runs under the headlining at the top of the windscreen and along the drivers side roof lining and pops out over the very rear side window, it then gets routed along the top of the inside part where the tailgate closes to the rear cam.
It's not the prettiest way and yes it co be done better, but it works.
 

johnyfartbox

A2OC Donor
IMG_20200727_115318.jpg


IMG_20200727_115327.jpg

The thin cable you can see is for the coming home light switch, the thicker cable is for the rear cam.

IMG_20200727_115407.jpg
IMG_20200727_115413.jpg
 
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johnyfartbox

A2OC Donor
The power lead goes off to the left and is tucked behind the A pillar cover and then into the glove box and pops out in a USB splitter that plugs into the ciggy lighter.
Eventually I will hardwire it.
 

dj_efk

A2OC Donor
A quick interjection from me...

Getting additional cabling into the tailgate of the A2 is an utter nightmare. I'm talking about doing it properly, with the additional cables fed through the rubber concertina conduits. This is the greatest barrier to fitting reversing camera and rear-facing dashcams. This is probably worth taking into account when choosing an appropriate dashcam package.

Cheers,

Tom
Yep I’m definitely thinking some sort of combined unit attached to the windscreen but has a rear facing camera, as well as the usual front facing one, is the way to go Tom.
 

dj_efk

A2OC Donor
Hi all,

A favour please - could someone post some further pics of the area around the rear view mirror? I’m not sure there is room to mount a combined front and rear camera unit here that would also be out of the driver’s line of sight.

Thanks
 

Nigel245

A2OC Donor
I know what you mean. I went with Roadhawk HD 8 years ago and it just sits behind the rear view mirror although I have positioned it slightly lower for sd card removal and to see the gps light on without disturbing mirror or camera. In some ways old tech now but it's been excellent.

cam1.jpgcam.jpg
 

dj_efk

A2OC Donor
Thanks Nigel, are you particularly tall and hence your line of sight is closer to the roof than someone of my more diminutive stature (5'9)?

I'm just wondering if the angle that the pic of the rear view mirrror is taken from is the natural one - Because I've never actually sat in an A2, let alone driven mine yet, I'm relying purely on others here.
 

johnyfartbox

A2OC Donor
IMG_20200804_145435.jpg

That shot is exactly from my eye line position, I'm around 5.11 and have the seat around the mid point hight.
I can't see if the camera is running so I just tilt the mirror down on the left hand side and I can then see the screen. I then just move it back so it's in the right position.
 

dj_efk

A2OC Donor
View attachment 67924
That shot is exactly from my eye line position, I'm around 5.11 and have the seat around the mid point hight.
I can't see if the camera is running so I just tilt the mirror down on the left hand side and I can then see the screen. I then just move it back so it's in the right position.
Thanks - I think I’m going to have to do without the rear view camera then, this has confirmed my suspicion that the rear view mirror will block the rear-facing camera in a windscreen-mounted integral unit (and mounting the unit lower down to get around this then puts it in / blocks my line of vision); whilst a separate rear camera sounds like it’s going to be too involves even for @timmus to wire in discreetly / neatly whilst the SideGuard kit is being installed.

If anyone has any further thoughts please interject.
 
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