If you don’t have one of the best dash cams, now’s the time to change that. That way you can keep a log of your time on the road, and accidents or perilous situations that may occur.
- 1 Best budget dash cam front and rear
- 2 How we test dash cams
- 3 Buying Guide For The Best Dash Cam Under $100
- 4 Frequently Asked Questions
- 5 Will the dash cam record my car’s speed?
- 6 Do dash cams work when the car is off?
- 7 How much does a dash cam under $100 cost?
- 8 How much should I spend on a dash cam?
- 9 Do I need a rear-facing dash cam?
The best dash cams under $100 can provide high-quality video and pictures while you’re behind the wheel. Dash cams are incredibly useful for proving who’s at fault in the event of an accident. Insurance agents, police officers, and court officials may ask questions about the circumstances surrounding a car accident which makes quality dash cam footage essential.
CHORTAU Dual Dash Cam 3 inch Dashboard Camera
- Comparatively affordable than other options
- Most popular option for a dash cam set
- Supports standard dash cam features
- Does not come with an SD card
In the 1st position, we have the CHORTAU Front and Rear Dash cam set. This is an affordable choice for a dash cam set that fits perfectly under the $100 price mark. You will get both rear and front cameras in this set along with a 3 inches digital display to access the camera feed. The camera offers standard 1080p FHD resolution along with 6 pcs IR LED powered night vision.
As for the recording angles, the front camera offers a wide 170 degree capture angle whereas the rear one offers 130 degrees coverage. There are many advanced features present in the CHORTAU Front and Rear Dash cam set such as continuous loop recording and emergency accidental locks to preserve important footage. You will be able to use up to 32 GB SD cards with this unit without any problem.
HP F660G Full HD 1080P Dash Cam
- Warning system
- Low effort installation
- Loop recording with event highlights
- GPS included
- 24-hour parking mode requires extra wire
The F660G is a dash cam from your favorite laptop and printer maker, HP. It has a lot of features built-in that you will certainly want, but probably weren’t necessarily expecting to come together in one budget model. The F660G has simple, stick-on installation, GPS integration, reliable night vision, and smart loop recording that locks files around the time of collisions.
You’ll also be interested in the warnings the HP gives, in the form of its forward collision warnings and lane departure warnings. Weirdly, there are some reports of the device being a bit overly cautious and reporting “ghost” cars you’re about to collide into. For these kinds of things, it is always better to rely mostly on your own eyes anyways, using the warnings as a sort of backup only.
If you want a full 24 hours of recording, even when your vehicle is turned off, you’ll need an extra wire and do a tad bit more installation work. The Dash Cam C501 Acc is sold separately and can be purchased at any time if you decide to upgrade later. This modification is relatively cheap, at considerably less than half the price of the HP F660G base unit, but will push the total price up to just barely over $100 if you buy them at the same time.
It goes without saying that the HP F660G tops our list due to its insane value for the cost and its feature-packed nature. Like a lot of HP products, the F660G isn’t the best possible model out there but is instead an affordable product that tries its best to provide value to average customers.
Nextbase 622GW Dash Cam
- Recording in 4K/120fps
- Voice control
- Emergency SOS
- Packed with features
- Plain design
THINKWARE F70 Full HD 1080P Dash Cam
- Wide, 140-degree lens
- Lack of display makes for a compact design
- No integrated GPS
- Frame rate could be higher
Thinkware is a top brand in the dash cam sector, and the F70 is one of its most compact, and affordable, options to date. This forwards-facing camera features a 2.1MP CMOS sensor that records Full HD (1920 x 1080) footage at 30 frames per second.
The lens is 140 degrees, which isn’t the widest we’ve seen but is still roughly par for the course in the sub-$100 end of the market. Like most dash cams, there is no battery. Instead, a supercapacitor holds enough charge to ensure footage is saved and the camera switches off correctly when it is unplugged or the car is switched off.
Additional features include a parking mode (which requires the optional hardwiring kit, sold separately) and there’s a port for adding Thinkware’s GPS antenna.
REXING V1 – 4K Ultra HD Car Dash Cam 2.4″ LCD Screen
- Offers 4K video recording
- WDR feature available with the cameras
- Supported storage capacity is suitable for 4K recording
- Display size is too small for 4K resolution
Our 3rd choice for the best dash cam under $100 is the REXING Car Dash Cam. Similar to our last choice, this is also one of the few options available under this budget that offers a 4K recording resolution. On top of that, it offers a slightly larger 2.4 inches LCD screen with WiFi compatibility for an overall desirable user experience.
The cameras included in the REXING Car Dash Cam set offer up to 170 degrees capture angle that is necessary to get a great FOV on your screen. You will also get a built-in G-sensor with the REXING Car Dash Cam that offers many advanced features. Furthermore, the cameras are capable of WDR recording that offers unparalleled performance at night. It also has dedicated mobile app support along with support for up to 256 GB SD cards.
Dash Camera for Cars 1080P
- Includes backup cam with guidelines
- Sensitive G-Sensor
- Full value for price
- Bundles available for four channels
- Low angle of view rear cam
While the HP F660G has a second cam, the Ssontong’s second channel cam acts as a full backup camera with guidelines and everything. While the rear cam isn’t quite up to the standards of a backup cam proper (it has a low 140-degree angle of view), you are also getting it as part of a complete system for under $100. Note, too, that the Ssontong can become a four-channel system and has bundle deals available if you wish to expand the system to be larger.
The Ssontong comes alive when you aren’t driving quickly via the G-Sensor, which rapidly detects vibrations. Even small wiggles, such as from a shut trunk or when you go back into your car to retrieve the bag you left in the back, will trigger it into full recording mode.
Overall, the Ssontong takes the throne for low-budget multi-channel dash cams. Even if you upgrade to include more channels, which might take you over $100, you’re still getting discounts and good deals at every corner. Ultimately, the Ssontong is a solid choice worthy of its dollar value.
Best budget dash cam front and rear
Garmin Dash Cam 57
- Compact size
- Voice control
- Good safety features
- Easy to use magnetic mount
- No glare filter
- Slightly fuzzy images at dusk
- No touchscreen
If you don’t have a a newer car with driver assistance features, this is where the Garmin 57 shines. It packs in a number of safety features including forward collision warnings, lane departure warnings, and alerts when you’re coming up to stop lights and speed cameras. It’ll also tell you when you’re too absent-minded to notice traffic has started moving.
The Garmin 57 also packs in a parking guard, a live view, and an automatic cloud backup that securely stores your recording in the cloud for safe keeping. Tie that in with voice controls, built-in GPS and 1440p video resolution, and you should be able to record all the important details should the worst ever happen.
Plus, like all Garmin dash cams, the Garmin 57 can connect to an additional four cameras to cover other directions.
iiwey Dash Cam Front Rear and Inside 1080P
- Night vision performance is pretty good
- G-sensor comes built-in with the system
- 32 GB SD card is included
- Most users would not need a 3-channel dash cam system
The iiwey Dash Cam is a cheaper option, but it still includes front, cabin, and rear cameras to offer a complete view of the surrounding. These cameras have FHD 1080p recording resolution support along with an IR night vision feature. Also, you will get a 32 GB SD card included with the set which reduces further expenses after you buy the set.
The cameras included in the iiwey Dash Cam set are the perfect option for vloggers since you will be able to capture indoor as well as outdoor footage with the same set. To improve the night vision performance, iiwey has implemented an F1.8 aperture Sony sensor on the iiwey Dash Cameras so you will get recognizable footage even with no light.
Vantrue N1 Pro Mini Dash Cam
- Superior night vision
- Quality collision AND motion detection
- Battery protection
- Front cam only
The Vantrue N1 is a seemingly standard forward-facing dash cam but—much like vampires, werewolves, and teenagers—doesn’t begin to show its real power until night falls. Again, it’s not bad during the day with the standard 1080P resolution, relatively good 160-degree angle of view, and high storage capacity. You can even get GPS functionality for around $20 more if you buy the N1 Pro add-on, which will put the total purchase right around the $100 mark. However, what you really want to see is how it functions at night.
When engaged in parking mode, you have a couple of modes to explore. First, there is collision-detection mode, which requires no extra steps to use. When your car is hit during parking mode, your Vantrue N1 camera will come alive and take a quick 20-second video for you to review later. The other option is a slightly more complex motion-detection mode, which requires a bit of wiring so the cam has access to your car’s battery. Your battery is protected from draining completely even while this mode is engaged due to battery protection mechanisms.
All of these great parking features go hand-in-hand with the “SONY Sensor.” This night vision brand is well-received by customers and actually works pretty well in a variety of environments. Combined with the recording modes above, you’re likely to have a good parking-mode experience with Vantrue. If it only had an included rear cam, it’d be just about perfect.
How we test dash cams
Almost all dash cams can be fitted to a car without making any permanent modification. They can be attached to a windscreen using a suction cup or removable adhesive pad, and powered from either a USB port or the 12V socket found in almost all cars. To test dash cams, we install them in our car, attach them to the windscreen and pair them to our smartphone as if we had bought them ourselves.
We then drive, at day and night, to test how the camera handles different lighting conditions, and ideally in varied weather too. The footage is then transferred to a smartphone or computer and viewed to check out the quality, and whether key details like vehicle registration plates are legible. This also gives us an opportunity to see how easy (or difficult) it is to view, transfer and save recorded footage.
Additional features like voice assistants and drive assistance systems get a thorough workout, and we also test how easy it is to turn these off, or adjust them to our personal preferences. Being able to quickly and easily turn audio recording off is key, especially when carrying passengers who don’t want their conversations recorded.
Naturally, we cannot crash a vehicle to see how well the dash cam detects collisions. Instead, firmly tapping the dash cam can simulate a collision, allowing us to see what happens when footage is saved. It is also possible to trigger a recording by powering the camera with a portable battery and tapping it against our desk. It may seem rudimentary, but it works and keeps our insurance company happy.
Sometimes, driving over a particularly aggressive speed bump can trigger a dash cam recording. In these cases we learn that the camera’s g-sensor is too sensitive, and needs to be adjusted, providing the menu system includes such an option.
Dash Cam Testing Process
Our team tested the dash cams under $100 against the following criteria:
- Ease of Installation: To test this, our team members went through the process of installing and setting up the dash cam to full functionality.
- Video Quality: This is arguably the most important characteristic of a dash cam as low-quality footage won’t be too useful. We tested video quality by capturing both pictures and videos with the dash cams and observing which captured video quality was highest.
- User Experience: Our team tested for user experience by connecting to the dash cam via the dash cam’s app and seeing how easy it was to save photos and videos.
Best budget dash cam under $100：our choice
|BEST OVERALL||CHORTAU Dual Dash Cam 3 inch Dashboard Camera|
|BEST VALUE||HP F660G Full HD 1080P Dash Cam|
|PREMIUM CHOICE||Nextbase 622GW Dash Cam|
Buying Guide For The Best Dash Cam Under $100
Installing a dash cam set in your car has numerous benefits. First of all, it offers a wide viewing angle for both front and rear views of your car which is impossible with standard mirrors. Apart from that, it also includes a range of smart features that can make your driving experience safer and more enjoyable than before. Before, the dash cam systems were not as affordable as they are right now.
Today, you can find a great selection of options even if you have a $100 budget for a dash cam set. On this page, you will come across all great choices available in the market for a dash cam set for the same budget. If you are not sure which option you should choose, worry not. We have prepared this helpful buying guide for the best dash cam sets just for you. Here, you can find all the basic information that you need to have before you can select the perfect dash cam set for your application.
Just like any other digital camera, the most important quality of a dash cam set is the recording quality available with the included cameras. Similar to your smartphone cameras or a digital camera, the dash cams also have a camera lens with a certain capture resolution. As you may already know, the resolution is basically the digital size of the footage where a higher resolution means a sharper and more detailed video.
Thus, you should prefer the highest resolution dash cam set you can find in your budget. While most brands offer the standard FHD 1080p resolution cameras in the $100 price range, there are a handful of choices that offer up to 1440p footage recording. However, you should also check the recording resolution with both cameras active at the same time to ensure you can get similarly good performance with both cameras simultaneously.
Connectivity is a very important aspect of any digital device, especially for surveillance and monitoring devices like dash cam. If your dash cam has standard wired connectivity, it can be a little difficult to install the system and control it while you are driving. Also, you will have to manually remove the SD card from the system to take a backup of the recorded footage and keep the system turned off for the time being. These drawbacks can be averted if you go with the one that offers WiFi connectivity.
If you already have a local WiFi connection in your car, you can connect your dash cam directly to your smartphone or laptop and get quick access to your system without any problem. Since WiFi is available with almost all devices nowadays, it can be a universal connectivity option for your dash cam set. It also allows wireless data transfer, allowing you to manage the storage drive without removing it. It also offers remote access to the system along with real-time monitoring via your smartphone if the WiFi connection has an active internet connection.
Just like the resolution and capture quality of the cameras, the display included in the dash cam set should also offer similar specifications in order to offer a reliable viewing experience. If your cameras are recording the video at a high-resolution but your display panel has a lower resolution, you won’t be able to spot minute details in the footage which can have drastic implications in some cases.
While you are checking the display of the dash cam set, make sure you check all display parameters, including the display panel type, digital resolution, touchscreen functionality, and most importantly the physical size of the display. Under the $100 budget range, most brands offer a 2 or 3 inches wide display, which is quite compact to be fair. However, you should prefer the one that ranges higher than 5 to 6 inches if it is under your budget for better display performance.
4. Extra Features
Apart from the technical specifications, you should also take a look at the additional features available with the dash cam set that makes your overall driving experience a whole lot more secure and enjoyable. One such feature is clip locking which automatically detects an incident on the street and permanently records the clip instead of keeping it in the looping footage. Another important feature of the parking assistance can be a lifesaver for new and inexperienced drivers.
It guides the driver while parking the car with helpful indicators and alerts for impact if the vehicle is too close to a wall or another car. You should also check if there is a mobile application designed for the dash cam system. There are many added features that you can get from the mobile application like remote monitoring and cloud storage support which can come in handy on an outdoor trip. It also helps if the dash cam system has a built-in GPS functionality so that you won’t need to use your smartphone’s GPS while you are navigating through crowded streets.
Frequently Asked Questions
Some of you might be wondering whether it is legal to use the dash cam since it records the number plates or faces of other people on the street. If you are worried about that, don’t be since it is not illegal to use a dash cam in the USA. With that being said, there are some regulations on where you install the dash cameras and the display unit. Mostly, these rules make sure that you get a proper view of the street without any obstructions.Dashcam Legality Depends on Where You Mount It
Will the dash cam record my car’s speed?
There are different cameras that are specifically designed to record the speed of a moving object and this feature is usually not available on a dash camera. But, you may still get the record of the speed if your dash cam has GPS functionality. The GPS feature is able to calculate the speed of your vehicle based on the real-time location of your car and the distance it is covering in a particular time frame. Thus, you may get the speed recording feature with some dash cams that have a built-in GPS.Does Dash Cam Record Speed?
Do dash cams work when the car is off?
Dash cams can work even when your car engine is off since they are connected to your car’s battery. And, your car’s battery will supply input to the system as long as the power is not completely turned off. Almost all cars have this feature for powering a range of electrical appliances in the car like lights, AC, or the music player without turning on the engine. If you want 24-hour performance with your dash cam system, you should look for a rechargeable unit that has a built-in battery that can keep the device running at least 6 to 8 hours without needing a recharge.Do Dashcams Record When the Vehicle is Off?
How much does a dash cam under $100 cost?
A dash cam under $100 will cost you around $30 at the very lowest. On the high end, you might, somewhat paradoxically, expect to go to around $120 if you decide to buy all of the add-ons, attachments, or extras. All of the dash cams presented in this article are under $100 and will stand as relatively decent quality dash cams even without possible extras. Depending on your local laws, some sales taxes may apply and push the price over $100 as well. In any event, there are decent, fully working dash cams available at the $50 price point.
How much should I spend on a dash cam?
You should spend what you can afford on a dash cam. In most cases, a dash cam is a nice extra to avoid any additional “he said, she said” in the event of a car accident. If you’re concerned about this, something is better than nothing and you don’t really have to have top-of-the-line equipment to get an okay picture. For average people looking for peace of mind, or people like Uber drivers that spend a lot of time on the road but don’t want to spend too much money, any of our best dash cams under $100 should reduce your nerves and give you that extra bit of security you’re after.
Do I need a rear-facing dash cam?
You don’t absolutely need a rear-facing dash cam, or any dash cam for that matter. However, if you want to catch detailed footage of any accidents you will need them. Since getting rear-ended by drivers not paying attention is possible, a rear-facing dash cam is quite beneficial. However, some people are not as interested in them as front-facing dash cams due to license plates always being in the. Note that some states, such as Maryland, require front and rear license plates and therefore get the most out of rear-facing dash cams.Do I Need a Rear Dash Cam?