For most drivers, that means high definition or better.That means 720p or 1080p video quality, both of which will let you read license plates and street signs clearly.When it comes to storing footage, most cams record to SD cards, which have storage up to the 32 GB range—most models don’t come with a card, so you’ll need to buy one separately.
Unfortunately, the batteries that come in most dash cams aren’t enough to power it through extended parking bouts.
The models that have batteries are meant to be used sparingly, like if there’s an accident and you want to take out the camera to record a walk-around. Until the batteries become more sophisticated, parking protection requires special installation.
This is how you avoid a hit-and-run on your parked car — if someone backs into your front end, the camera will have recorded the footage and the license plate of the offending vehicle.
The major drawback to using parking mode is that save for a few otherwise unremarkable dash cam models, you must have the cam hard-wired to your vehicle.
In a place like Russia (or anywhere with flawed or difficult legal systems) there’s the potential for depraved drivers to, for example, back into your front end and claim that you rear-ended them.
With a camera rolling, you have proof of the grift.
You can circumvent the daily process of connecting the cam into your car’s 12-volt plug by hard-wiring your dash cam to your car.
This costs and a trip to a Best Buy with an auto center or your local indie car stereo shop.
Even at night, the video captured is still sharp enough for most purposes, so don’t be discouraged when the quality takes a hit as the sun goes down.
You can pay a bit more for a higher-end camera (we looked at those, too) and the night vision will be a bit better, but unless you’re documenting some serious footage, your night drives won’t need much more than the high-def quality it captures anyway.
If you regularly park in public spaces where you worry about damage to your car, get a model with motion detection.