The dashcam arrived on time and as described. I waited until the camera arrived before buying the memory card because I wanted to be absolutely sure I was ordering the right type.
It takes a micro SD card (called micro TFT in China) and as advised by other customers I got a class 10 card so that it wrote the data to the card as fast as the camera recorded to avoid jumpy playback.
The camera itself arrived as new and came with a USB charger/data transfer cable and an in car charging cable. However it does NOT come with a suction cup to attach it to the windscreen which is not mentioned and I was told by Amazon customer services that it did.
This is a problem because if I tape it to the actual dashboard like the name suggests then the view for the camera is poor. It is best at the top of the windscreen. I’ve rectified this by using elastic band to attach it to the rear view mirror. The problem with this is firstly the mirror is turned to the driver meaning the camera is angled toward the passenger side of the car. The second problem is that this stops me from being able to flick the rear view mirror at night so that bright lights behind me are refracted away which gives me a headache.
There are a few problems with the device itself:
Firstly, when turning it on or when it comes on when the charging cable is plugged in an annoying and very loud Chinese voice starts shouting. This is very embarrassing when plugging it into my computer at work in order to charge it. This voice cannot be turned off, only turned down. This is done with the volume control in the settings menu however for some reason this also turns down the volume at which the camera records sounds so it doesn’t record potentially important sounds like rear collisions or road rage, or spoken number plates (if the camera doesn’t pick them up visually) during the journey.
Secondly the battery life is terrible. The battery after a full days charging while at work will only last for 2 hours while recording. My commute to work normally lasts for just over two hours per day so annoyingly it doesn’t last for the whole return journey.
This would be fine because I could get over the hassle and danger of having to plug in the in car charger while driving however the in car charger broke after two weeks. The charger fell apart at the charging end when I was unplugging it from the cigarette lighter. The fuse tube came out but the fuse looked unbroken so I reassembled the charger however it not doesn’t work. I asked for a replacement cable to be sent but Amazon cannot do this, they can only have me send the product back and order a new one. As I explained to the – nice and helpful - customer service staff the product may have gone up in price or be out of stock so I don’t want to risk getting a refund and reordering when the product itself is still working and it’s just a cheap cable (cheap to buy excluding P+P but difficult to find on its own and not worth buying for that alone) plus it’s just a lot of time and effort for a cable.
All in all the product performs well and is easy to use. The video quality is good but certainly not high definition by any… definition of high definition. This has been said countless times by other reviewers for this and similar products so I don’t know why Amazon let them get away with advertising it like that on the website.
It does what I want it to but combining the camera and micro SD of sufficient quality brings the cost to £50.26 (I paid £30.95 for the camera and £19.31 for the following ‘SanDisk microSDHC Ultra 32GB, class 10’: B007JTKLEK
which I think is too expensive especially when I can no longer charge it in the car and it has the problems outlined above.
All in all I’d give it 2.5 stars if I could for prompt delivery, good condition, good recording quality, and good customer service but countered by all the problems above but I’m going to be generous and go for 3/5 instead of 2/5.