For a long time my only experience of “Dashcams” (Car-Dashboard mounted cameras) was watching scary Russian youtube videos highlighting the dangers of driving in the former USSR. They featured crazed drivers and pedestrians causing or escaping from crashes on the seemingly treacherous Russian roads. However, after Barbara and myself watched one too many documentaries about the risk of “Cash for Crash” scams we thought it was time to invest in our own dash-cam.
To clarify: “Cash for Crash” is the tabloid catchphrase for an fake accident used by a criminal to get claim insurance money for both the damage caused to a car an the inevitable “whiplash” injuries suffered by the many occupants of the car that crashes. In it’s basic format the crash involves the car in front of you suddenly and unexpectedly braking (often with the cars break-lights deliberately disabled). In the resultant crash, you, as the rear driver are to blame and hence your insurance company has to foot the bill. A recent estimate on BBC’s Crimewatch was that this added £50 to the insurance costs for each motorist in the UK.
Anyway, scared by this prospect we decided it was time to invest in a Dashcam. This brought us round to the next problem, neither of us knows anything about these things. In such circumstances there is only one place to turn to, the InterWeb, or more specifically Amazon (the retailer not the river). A quick search of Amazon reveals not just the products, but more importantly which are most highly-rated and even more importantly which are the best sellers (I always suspicious that product ratings are distorted by a few bad ratings, or even worse improved by sockpuppets). After reading my way through the first page of search results I was still a little unsure about the product I wanted, although €60 sounded about the right amount to pay. A few carefully crafted google search terms later I came across the rather useful world of Techmoan, a British blogger who seems to have become an expert in the world of dashcams. Most usefully, he has his own Youtube channel which explains all you’ll ever need to know about these camera. After careful scanning of Techmoan’s reports I finally settled on a product. Naturally, the market has moved on since I bought mine a couple of weeks ago, however you can see what I bought here.
Setup and installation was a relative breeze (well, at least after I found the language function, allowing me to reset the OSL to English.)
In the next few days I’ll add a video clip, so you can see the quality of the recording.