Recording what goes on in front of your car is very useful, especially for capturing weird road incidents and the unfortunate collision.
But being able to record what goes on behind your car is just as important, since rear end collisions are just as bad – and actually harder to avoid, since you aren’t always going to be looking into the rear view mirror.
Additionally, when you have two cameras, you’ll cover a lot more area around your car in terms of video capturing, since the rear view lens is also usually wide angled.
Dash cam manufacturers have catered to this need and there are many models available that come in two parts – a front camera, which also houses the main “brains” of the camera, and a rear camera which is much smaller and transmits the video across a coax cable to the front camera.
Both cameras usually record in 1080p HD, but sometimes, the front camera will be full 1080p and the rear camera will be 720p.
All of the recording and storage is done in the front camera itself – so you can use the front camera as a standalone unit, too.
If you operate a car with a camera in the front and rear (also called 2 channel or dual channel), you’ll be covered for almost every situation possible.
I’ll quickly go over some of the important features you may want to consider in your dash cam. Think about how you will utilize the dash cam, now, and in the future when making a purchase. Remember a dash cam is a long term investment as it can save you thousands of dollars off of one accident.
Having a setup that includes a screen depends on how you want to utilize the dash cam. If you are looking for a dash cam with backup camera, then a screen is a must. Otherwise, the screen is an extra cost that could have gone into another feature that makes sense for you. I would say that you should be looking for a screen around 2.5 inches. This is enough for quick playback and sufficient coverage for reversing your vehicle.
There are a lot of buzz words when it comes to picture quality. Product specifications are important, but seeing actual footage is crucial. All of the products here have been user tested and verified. If you decide to venture out of our recommendations, we suggest looking for products that are at least 1080p on both front and back. It needs to record in at least 30 fps simultaneously. Ideally having 4K resolution and 60 fps are the optimal settings.
Design is very subjective when it comes to dash cams, but there are several factors you should take in account. There will be certain cars that won’t fit with some of the common dual dash cam designs. For example, the Blackview DR750S is a heavyweight dash cam setup, typically for those who spend a lot of time in their vehicle or those who drive trucks. The rear dash cam is rather large, though it does record in high quality, so trying to attach this in a small, compact car may not make the most sense. For a small car, something like the VAVA rear camera can easily be installed.
Switching over to the front unit, you’ll have to think about if the dash cam will obstruct your view. The last thing you want is to be pulled over by the police and say the dash cam, which should be protecting you, is actually in violation of the law. Windshield visibility should always be maintained.
The Blackview DR750S-2CH is a two channel dash camera that records full 1080p HD video from both cameras. The front camera has beautiful lens and allows you to record at 60fps for buttery smooth playback. You can also use the companion Blackview app to view, edit, upload or even live stream to YouTube or Facebook. Your phone (Apple or Android) can connect to the camera through WiFi.
This kit includes a hardwiring kit which allows you to hook it up to your car battery and can use it as a CCTV and record when your car is off. The rear camera is rather bulky and for the normal SUV or sedan, you’ll have to live with the rear camera on your rear window.
GPS is built into this camera, ensuring map and speed data is collected properly.
VAVA Dual Front and Rear Dash Camera
The VAVA 2-channel dash cam is great for its price. You get a lot of the functionality of the BlackView camera, but at a lower price point. The image quality is really crystal clear on both cameras, but you only get 30fps. 30fps is still great for everyday drivers.
What we like about this dash cam is its simplicity. It is really plug and play and the cameras are rather discrete, especially the rear camera. Since there is no screen, VAVA has included an exceptional app you can utilize with your mobile device. Playback, uploading to the internet, or taking quick screenshots are seamless. Included in the box are panel tools, so you can hide the wires around the car. No more swinging cables in the car, please! Additionally, there is a snapshot button where you can quickly capture a 20 second video or take a quick picture of something like a license plate. Is that redundant as the dash cam should already be recording? Kind of. When you click the snapshot button, it saves the file into its own separate folder and it is safe from loop recording, where old files are erased to make room for the new files when the storage is low.
If you want GPS functionality to track the driving route, location and speed, you will have to purchase an extra GPS cable which is easily install-able.
Unfortunately, VAVA is rather sensitive to temperature with its operating range between 14 degrees to 122 degrees.
The Rexing V1P is a really popular choice among dash cam enthusiasts. I personally like the design of this more than others as the design is compact. It also includes a 2.4 inch LCD screen for quick playback or WiFi to access footage through your phone.
If you have a wider car, you’ll appreciate this dash cam’s wide angle lens at 170 degrees. That’s close to a typical person’s field of vision.
The Rexing V1P is a dual camera, and since it has a screen, you can use it as a backup camera. Additionally, this camera kicks butt when it comes to temperature. It’s operable up to 176 degrees. The air vents and design make this possible.
Vantrue N4 Dual Dash Cam
The Vantrue N4 is a dual dash cam when it comes to the two separate modules, but the front unit actually has a cabin camera, making this a 3-channel dash camera. This is perfect for those who have to share the car with passengers on an ongoing basis whether that be ride share, taxi or carpool. The inside camera can rotate up or down, for fine-tuning.
The cabin camera is equipped with IR night vision sensors, allowing it to function with little to no light. If a customer gets rowdy, or decides to file a claim against you, you have the necessary protection in order to defend yourself. Besides the cabin camera, the front and rear lens are exceptional. If anyone is looking for superior night vision quality, the N4 is the best. It features F1.4 aperture lens, allowing tons of light to hit the sensor. This allows you to use a microSD card up to 256gb which is a ton of space and can fill 40+ hours worth of footage.
Check out our full review of the N4 here.
Z-Edge Z3D Dual Dash Cam
The Z-Edge Z3D dash cam is a 2-channel setup. One camera in the rear near the trunk, the other mounted up front. We chose this dash cam because it’s great on a budget. It still packs a bunch of features into a package for a great price.
Like the others, this films front and back both in 1080p @ 30fps. GPS is included which is a big surprise at this price point. It still has loop recording and has parking monitor functionality.
What this setup doesn’t have are things like a super wide angle. This setup only goes to 150 degrees. Users also report the suction cup included doesn’t work well and the night vision could be better. This is a great dash cam if you need to have that front and back coverage but need to sacrifice on some of the extra features.