The 5 Best Front & Rear Dash Cams – 2017/2018

2017 has seen a lot of innovation in the dual dash cam sector. While quality dual channel dash cams used to be quite expensive, this year has fortunately seen a drop in prices. It started with the mid-price BlackVue DR400 series, which consists largely of front and rear dash cams half the price of the popular BlackVue DR650S.

A bit later, the affordable (for a dual cam) Mini 0906 and the high-end Thinkware F800 and F800 Pro made their debuts. Soon after, the Blacksys CH-200 hit the markets, and we’re expecting BlackVue’s new flagship, the DR750S-2CH, later this month.

Consequently, our annual “5-Best-Front-&-Rear-Dash-Cams” overview article is out a bit later than usual, as we waited to review some of the more promising devices. And we believe the wait was well worth it! We’ve got three newcomers on our list this year. Additionally, the BlackVue DR650S-2CH, which has made our best-of list for the 3rd consecutive time, may be replaced by the DR750S once it is available.

Just as last year, in this overview we’ll be listing only the primary characteristics for each camera: Video resolution, overall video quality, reliability, memory capacity, and a list of extra features such as Wi-Fi or GPS. We’ll write a sentence or two to explain why each camera made the best-of list, to make it as easy for you as possible to find the best front-and-rear dash cam for your situation. (As for the reliability of the newer cameras, we’re going to wait a couple of months until we have sufficient data for a qualified assessment.)

Also just as last year, we won’t be listing prices in this article, because they change way too often. Just follow the links to the vendors and compare the latest offers, or have a look at our dual channel dash cam comparison table, where we do include approximate prices for ease of comparison. However, actual current prices may differ, so be sure to check the vendors’ links regardless.

So here, in no particular order, we present you our favorite dual-channel dash cams of this year:

Best Video Quality: Thinkware F800 Pro

Thinkware F800 Pro front and rear car cameraResolution: 1920×1080 (front and rear)

Overall video quality: Very good

Reliability: To be determined

Memory capacity: 128 GB

Extras: Wi-Fi, integrated GPS, parking mode (buffered, time-lapse, or energy saving), low voltage cutoff, overheat protection, capacitor, lock file button

An excellent new camera in 2017, with great video quality day and night. This camera only came out a couple of weeks ago, so we can’t say anything definite yet about its long-term reliability. However, having seen previous Thinkware products, we’re fairly confident that the F800 Pro isn’t going to disappoint. If you’re looking for the best video quality available in 2017, combined with a truly versatile parking mode, the Thinkware F800 Pro is your best bet.

See our full review or compare prices: Amazon US / CA / UK -- eBay US / CA / UK / AU

Best Dual Cam With Touch Screen: BlackVue DR490L-2CH

Resolution: 1920×1080 (front and rear)

Overall video quality: Good

Reliability: To be determined

Memory capacity: 128 GB

Extras: 3.5″ Touch screen, buffered parking mode, low voltage cutoff, capacitor. Optional GPS.

An excellent mid-price addition to the BlackVue portfolio, the DR490L-2CH comes with a 3.5″ touch screen, making it a lot less discreet, but also a lot easier to operate than its siblings. With 1080p resolution both ways, video quality is pretty good, superior even to BlackVue’s current flag ship, the DR650S-2CH (featured below). The DR490L doesn’t have Wi-Fi or cloud connectivity, but it does come with native buffered parking mode (meaning it has a built-in low voltage cutoff function and doesn’t need a Power Magic Pro to be hardwired).

See our full review or compare prices: Amazon US / UK -- eBay US / CA / UK / AU

Best Taxi Cam: Transcend Drive Pro 520

Transcend Drive Pro 520, first taxi cam by a renowned manufacturerResolution: 1920×1080 (front), 1280×720 (rear)

Overall video quality: Good

Reliability: Fair

Memory capacity: 32 GB (free card included)

Extras: 2.4″ screen, Wi-Fi

A great choice for those working in the people transportation business, a taxi cam films your car’s passenger cabin in addition to the road in front of you. While there are lots of taxi cameras available for prices below what the Drive Pro 520 costs, we have yet to find one that records decent video quality both ways (let us know if you own one). Of course you could also go high-end and get the BlackVue DR650S-2CH-IR, but the Drive Pro 520 is the best value-for-money taxi cam available at this time.

See our full review or compare prices: Amazon US / CA / UK -- eBay US / CA / UK / AU

Best Low-Cost: Mini 0906

Product photo of the Mini 0906 front and rear dash cams, with CPL filterResolution: 1920×1080 (front and rear)

Overall video quality: Fair

Reliability: To be determined

Memory capacity: 128 GB

Extras: 1.5″ screen, integrated GPS, time-lapse parking mode, CPL filter, capacitor, lock file button

Released in mid-2017, the Mini 0906 is the first camera of the Chinese Mini series that records front and rear video. The Mini dash cam series used to be highly popular because of their low prices and discreet form factors, however popularity dropped when it turned out that some of these cameras didn’t actually last all that long.

As the 0906 is still very new, it remains to be seen whether this camera is more reliable than its cousins. That being said, video quality is fair, so if you’re looking for an entry-level dual channel dash cam and the other models in this list just won’t fit your budget, the Mini 0906 might be perfect for you.

See our full review or compare prices: Amazon US / CA -- eBay US / CA / UK / AU -- AliExpress

Long-Time Best Seller: BlackVue DR650S-2CH

The DR650GW-2CH's front and rear cameras in closeup.

Resolution: 1920×1080 (front), 1280×720 (rear)

Overall video quality: Good

Reliability: Excellent

Memory capacity: 128 GB

Extras: Integrated GPS, Wi-Fi, buffered parking mode, cloud connectivity, capacitor. Battery discharge prevention device available separately (Power Magic Pro).

While the BlackVue DR650S-2CH is the only camera on this list that records only 720p rear video, this is still one of the most popular two-way dash cams of all time. Not least due to its elegant, stealthy design, along with a wide variety of extras such as buffered parking mode, GPS, and cloud connectivity. Watching your dash cam’s video stream live over the internet is a feature which none of BlackVue’s competitors have been able to implement yet.

Alternatively, there’s also an infrared version that can be used as a taxi cam, called BlackVue DR650S-2CH-IR, and a truck version with a weather-proof rear camera that can be mounted on the outside of your vehicle, the DR650S-2CH Truck.

See our full review or compare prices: Amazon US / UK -- eBay US / CA / UK / AU

Note: This camera comes with an SD card. You can choose whether you want a 16, 32, 64, or 128GB card. For best performance we recommend getting at least 64GB.

Summary
The 5 Best Front & Rear Dash Cams - 2017/2018
Article Name
The 5 Best Front & Rear Dash Cams - 2017/2018
Description
Quick overview of the five best dual channel dash cams available in late 2017 / early 2018. To be updated when/if better cams become available.
Author
Publisher Name
Dashboard Camera Reviews