The prices of dash cams vary widely, even from the same manufacturer. So with the option of paying a reasonable £ 40 or a tempting £ 133, what do you actually get if you choose to spend more on the more expensive option?
We analyzed over 70 models from 21 different brands and found that there are four things that typically set high-end dash cameras apart from standard models:
While more expensive dash cameras may have better features at first glance, we know from our tests that extra bells and whistles don’t always guarantee better quality images, or a dash cam. easy to use.
In particular, high recording resolution and maximum video quality do not guarantee better footage. We have tested Full HD dash cameras that perform better than 4K models with double the maximum video quality.
Our latest test results show models ranging from cheap to expensive. You can use our results to find out if it’s worth paying extra for an expensive dash cam.
Best Buy Dash Cameras – whether you’re looking for a low-budget or high-end dash cam, we’ve got a list of the best models you can spend your money on.
Why pay more for a premium dash cam?
We’ve tested over 70 models and found that price isn’t always the best indicator of a good quality dash cam.
On-board cameras clash: Motorola, Thinkware and Transcend
You can use our chart below to compare the specs of three dash cameras from our latest tests – an inexpensive, mid-range, and an expensive model.
- Audio recording – capture sound, like your comment
- Auto switch-on function – automatically turns on the dash cam when you start the engine
- G-force recording protection – protects images in the event of a crash
Motorola MDC150 (£ 40)
The Motorola MDC150 is part of Motorola’s affordable MDC dash cam line. This compact device packs reasonable specifications into a small package. It records in Full HD at a maximum of 1920 x 1080 pixels, similar to most budget and mid-range models we tested.
It comes equipped with the standard features we’ve come to expect from a model of this price, including a useful two-inch display screen for viewing images directly on the dash cam.
It comes with a G-force sensor for automatic camera activation and saving images in high impact moments, as well as an auto power-on function – to automatically turn on the dash camera when the contact starts.
You also get an audio recording to capture the sound, like your own commentary after an incident.
There are a few features that you won’t get with this dash cam. It only has a front camera, does not allow you to take still photos, and cannot track your location using GPS tracking.
But for this price, is it possible that the Motorola MDC150 will produce good video footage? Discover – see our full lab test Motorola MDC150 Reviews.
Thinkware F70 (£ 79)
Posing as the world’s leading dash cam brand, Thinkware introduces the F70 – a compact mid-range dash cam with 2.1MP resolution.
it captures images in Full HD with a maximum video quality of 1920 x 1080 pixels, which is identical to the cheaper Motorola MDC150. But, unlike the Motorola dash cam, it doesn’t have a display screen. This is not essential, but it certainly makes the images easier to read.
The F70 is a single lens camera that doesn’t let you take still photos, but it does have some features that a dash cam user would definitely want. For example, you can record audio and have the reassurance of a G-force sensor and auto-power-on feature.
With so many similarities to the cheaper Motorola dash cam, is the picture quality worth paying twice as much? Read our Thinkware F70 review to discover.
Transcend DrivePro 550 (from £ 133)
The most expensive dash cam in this lot and Transcend’s most expensive model to date, the DrivePro 550 has a lot to prove.
Matching its cheaper peers, this Transcend dash cam records in Full HD resolution at a maximum of 1,920 x 1,080 pixels.
In addition to the typical features of a display screen, GPS location tracking, photo function to capture images of a road incident and a front camera, you also have a rear camera to record collisions in the back of your car.
Transcend’s sophisticated add-ons include headlight reminders to remind you to turn on your lights when it gets dark and fatigue alerts to encourage breaks on long journeys.
Is this Transcend dash cam worth the extra money and what was its video quality in our tough lab tests? Our full Transcend DrivePro 550 review reveals everything.
Latest dashboard cameras in test
Along with the Motorola MDC150, Thinkware F70, and Transcend DrivePro 550, the latest batch of dash cams that we tested in our lab also include:
We have full lab test results for 73 dash cameras in total. To find the right model for you and your budget, visit our dash cam reviews.