The three basic types of dashcam

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As the roads become increasingly crowded and motorists are often targeted by insurance scams such as cash-for-crash, it is not surprising that more and more people are looking to record their journeys.

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Dashcam popularity has soared in recent years, but which type of camera should you choose?

Standard dash cameras

The most basic type of dashcam, these can be plugged into a 12v power socket or hard wired into the vehicle’s electrical system. This type of camera usually uses a memory card – the same as those used in digital cameras or smartphones – to record the images it captures.

A car or truck camera generally only records what is happening on the road ahead. You need to carefully position your car or truck camera so that it captures what is going on but does not obscure your view of the road.

Feature dashcams

This type of camera offers extra functionality above the simple recording offered by the standard type. This can include features such as GPS to record the location of the vehicle, sound recording to pick up what is happening in the vehicle, speed sensors, and accelerometers.

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Having speed sensing means you keep a record of how fast you were travelling at the time of any accident, while an accelerometer records the change in speed, such as from hard braking. Specialists such as Backwatch sell truck cameras online that incorporate many of these features.

Some cameras also feature an on-board power supply, meaning that they will continue to record and collect evidence even if the vehicle’s power is shut off in the event of an accident.

Interior/exterior cameras

This type of camera has one lens looking forward at the road and another watching the interior of the vehicle. These are popular with the parents of teenagers, who can keep an eye on what their offspring are up to while driving. They are also useful for security, as you can capture images of the perpetrator if the car is broken into or stolen.

Which should you choose? It really comes down to your circumstances and your budget. There are lots of dashcams on the market, so look for one that offers the features you need at a reasonable price. You might also consider whether you already have a smartphone or other device that could do the job.

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