– Max. resolution: 2560×1600 @ 30fps
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– Bit rate: up to 30 Mbps
– Aperture: F1.6
– 2″ screen
– GPS in mount (optional)
– WDR Super Night Vision
– Size: 85mm x 52mm x 36mm
– Novatek 96670 processor
– Sony Starvis IMX335 5MP sensor
– Angle of view: 140° diagonal
– Operating temperature: from -10°C to 65°C (14°F to 149°F)
– Video formats: MP4, TS
– Supports up to 256 GB MicroSD cards
– Time and date stamp on video
– Loop recording, auto on/off, G-Sensor
– Buffered parking mode (requires hard wire kit)
– Interfaces: Mini USB, AV out
– Lock file button
– CPL filter (optional)
– Internal capacitor instead of battery
– Internal microphone and speaker
– Adhesive mount
Viofo A119 v3 Review
Viofo’s A119 series has been a huge success from day one. Unlike some other Chinese brands, Viofo are known for combining good video quality with high reliability, at an affordable price. They have thus risen to become one of the most respected manufacturers of low-cost, decent-quality dash cams.
2023 UPDATE: If you can afford to spend about $40 more, the recently released A119 Mini 2 supports modern features such as voice control, 5GHz Wi-Fi, and larger memory cards. It is also smaller than the A119 v3.
Available for below $100 in its most basic configuration, the Viofo A119 v3 is the cheapest dash cam that supports buffered parking mode. It also supports a couple of alternative parking modes (see below).
Video quality is very good during the day, and good at night. The maximum bit rate is an impressive 30.8 Mbps, and while you can select a lower bit rate in the settings to save memory on the SD card, this doesn’t make much sense because you’d be sacrificing image quality.
Video resolution goes all the way up to 2560×1600 pixels (1600p). Most users prefer to run this camera at 2560×1440 (1440p) resolution though, which is a 16:9 format and the same width, but a bit less tall. No scaling happens at 1440p, it’s just that fewer pixels on the sensor are used. Effectively, you’ll be recording a little less of the sky above, which is probably no big deal unless you’re out meteor hunting. 😉
Lower resolutions are also supported, including 1080p at 60 frames per second (fps), and 720p at up to 120fps. However, we recommend setting the resolution to 1440p, at maximum bit rate, to achieve the best video quality.
The A119 v3 uses the same wedge-shaped casing as the previous A119 cameras. Thus, it is just as discreet and functional as its predecessors, with a 2″ screen and the 5 characteristic buttons below the display. The lock-file button is a bit taller than the others and located in the center, so it’s easy to find even without looking at the camera. You want to be able to press this button while you’re driving, in case something happens that you wish to save the video of.
Overall, this camera is relatively easy to set up and use, even though the manual is a bit on the short side (which can be a good thing though).
A CPL filter is available (at an extra cost) to reduce reflections when driving in bright sunlight. At night though, it’s best to remove the CPL filter, because it reduces the amount of light reaching the camera’s sensor.
If you still have a CPL filter from a previous version of the A119 camera, you will be happy to know that it will also fit the A119 v3.
GPS is also available optionally. The GPS antenna is built into the camera’s mount.
Two non-GPS mounts are included with the camera. These two are of different thickness, to help with various windshield configurations. A GPS mount is available also (costs extra), which is slightly thicker than both of the non-GPS mounts. The GPS mount has a connector for the power cable, so you can easily remove the camera from your car without having to remove the cable.
The v3’s GPS mount is not compatible with previous Viofo A119 cameras.
Wi-Fi is not supported.
Memory cards can be up to 256GB in size. At a bit rate of 30 Mbps, a 256GB SD card can hold over 18 hours of video. At 30 Mbps, the memory card will fill up relatively quickly, so it’s a good idea to get a large memory card. Also make sure to always use high-endurance SD cards with dash cams (here’s why).
As for the video format, you can choose between MP4 or TS. MP4 is the more popular standard, while TS is less well known. Both are identical with regards to video quality, so most users probably want to choose MP4.
LEDs and camera sounds can be switched completely off, if you prefer to minimize distractions. Also, you can set the camera’s screen to switch off after an amount of time has elapsed that you specify.
Viofo A119 v3 Parking Modes
The A119 v3 is the first low-cost dash cam that supports buffered parking mode. Previously, only high-end Korean brands like BlackVue and Thinkware had this feature.
Time-lapse parking mdoe is also available. In total, this camera gives you 3 distinct parking modes to choose from:
- Buffered parking mode (motion activated): Records 10 seconds before and after any motion is detected. This option offers the best protection, because you get to see what happens before and after any event. However, bear in mind that if you park on a busy road or parking lot, this option might fill up your memory card quite quickly. Bit rate: 8 Mbps.
- Low bit rate: Similar to the above, but records at a reduced bit rate of 4 Mbps. Video quality will be lower, but your memory card will last twice as long.
- Time-lapse parking mode: Records at a low frame rate. You can choose from 1, 2, 3, 5, or 10 fps. At 2fps for example, a 3min clip holds 45 minutes of parking time. This is a good option when parking in a busy place.
For parking mode to work, you’ll need a hard-wire kit, which costs about $10 extra. Or you can get a battery pack, which is a lot more expensive though.
Note that time-lapse mode is also available in normal (driving) operation, in case you wish to record a fast-motion video of your trip.
The Viofo A119 v3 is one of the most promising new releases of the year 2019. While it’s too early to say much about its long-term reliability yet, it’s fair to expect the v3 to be as reliable as its predecessors (A119 v1 and v2), which were quite trustworthy.
The inclusion of buffered parking mode will probably make this camera a best-seller in the mid-price range. We definitely recommend the A119 v3 if you’re looking for a relatively low-price dash cam with advanced parking modes and great video quality.
Where To Buy
The Viofo A119 v3 is available for sale from the following vendors:
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Viofo A119 v3 Video Samples
For full original video quality, make sure to watch on full screen and select maximum video resolution (use the cog icon in lower right corner). You may have to rewind the video after changing the resolution.
Day Time Video Sample
Video quality at day is very good. The above video was recorded at 2560×1600 resolution with a bit rate of 26 Mbps. You can clearly see license plates of other vehicles, even when driving by.
Night Time Video Sample
Night video quality is good. This video was recorded at 2560×1440 resolution, with the bit rate set to maximum (30.8 Mbps). The resulting image is crisp and clear with great visibility of details. Most license plates of other cars are readable.