Branded as a “personal security camera for your car”, the DashCam Pro is undoubtedly one of the most marketed dashboard cameras. According to its makers, the dash cam features full HD capabilities, a 120-degree field of view, supports up to 32GB of storage and can record images in all lighting conditions; which basically means you can use it in your day and night drives.
All those features sound compelling, and with a low price tag of under 40 US Dollars, you may be tempted to seriously consider purchasing this dash cam.
What we recommend instead
Why the Dashcam Pro Isn’t Good Value for Money
Despite the aggressive marketing on TV infomercials and online campaigns, the Dashcam Pro enjoys very little acclaim, close to zero actually. Here are the main reasons why:
Loop recording problems
The dash cam supports loop recording, which is a good thing. Most dash cams use this technique to automatically overwrite the oldest recordings (loops) with the newest. You don’t have to do that manually.
While the Dashcam Pro has that ability, the re-looping feature fails when the memory card fills up. The whole camera simply shuts down and you’ll be forced to remove the SD card, copy the recordings in a computer and insert the card back to the dash cam before it starts recording again.
Memory Card Issues
Take your pick for the Dash Cam Pro SD Card. You can pick from a standard SD or any other MMC storage card. It supports cards of up to 32GB storage. That’s enough storage space to record a lengthy video and add photos too. Unfortunately the package doesn’t include the memory card, you’ll have to purchase it separately.
But that’s the least of the problems. The slot where the memory card goes is very weak that it may easily break as you insert the card. Also, sometimes the dash cam just fails to read the memory card for no apparent reason. It displays the error message “no media”, indicating that the card has not been detected. You may have to switch the dash cam off, remove the SD card and insert it again until it is detected.
Very short battery life
The built-in battery found in dash cams generally has a short life. But the Dashcam Pro takes that shortness to a new, undesirable level. The battery will run dry a few minutes (10 to 20) after you turn the car’s ignition off. It won’t be of much help in parking mode.
Poor video quality at night
First off, the daytime videos of the Dashcam Pro are good – equal to what you’ll get from most other dash cams that record full HD videos. The problem comes when the dash cam has to record footage at night.
It does have an infrared function, but it doesn’t work. You’ll have to rely on your vehicle’s headlamps and street lighting.
Limited field of view
While the manufacturers claim that the Dashcam Pro can cover a wide angle of 120 degrees, the actual field of view is a lot smaller. Other than the car that’s immediately in front of you, you won’t be able to see much else on the road.
Things To Like
It’s not all bad news though. The As Seen on Tv Dash Cam does have a few features that you may like.
- Auto-record: it will start recording as soon as you start your vehicle’s ignition.
- Full HD (1080P): daytime videos are particularly great.
- Affordability: it is by far one of the most affordable dash cams in the market today.
- Easy mounting: the camera attaches to the windshield with ease. It comes with a suction cup mount for that purpose.
It is safe and accurate to say that the Dashcam Pro doesn’t really work as seen on TV dash cam infomercials. Unless you’re willing to compromise on some important features, don’t shell out your hard earned money for this unit.
You can easily score a better deal by considering alternative dash cams.
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