REVIEW – For many years, I really disliked dash cameras. I felt like they were in the way of my vision, and always had some sort of shortcoming, whether it was the quality of the footage or connectivity that made me say away from them. Most recently I have been able to test and review a few of them, and I have begun to like them more as the overall quality has increased. This dashcam really caught my interest because of its really tiny size and yet indications of nice built-in features.
What is it?
The Vantrue Dash Cam is a “tiny” dash cam with a 1.5″ LCD and a 160-degree wide angle lens that produces full 1080P HD footage and includes features like Parking Mode and collision detection.
What’s in the box
1 x Vantrue N1 Pro Dash Cam
1 x Suction cup mount
1 x 3’ Micro USB data cable
1 x Car charger/power adapter with connected 10’ mini USB cable
1 x User Guide
1 x Quick Start Guide
1 x Warranty card
Design and features
This dash cam has a tiny and compact design and measures 1″ x 2 1/2″ x 1 1/2″.
Display: 1.5 inch TFT LCD (4:3)
Lens: 160-degree wide viewing angle and a full 6 layer glass lens with a wide aperture of F/2.0
Video Format: .MOV; H.264 compressed format
Video Resolution: 1920x1080P30, 1280x720P30
Image Resolution: 12M Pixels
Image Format: JPEG
Motion Detection: ON/OFF
Parking Monitor: ON/OFF
Audio Recording: ON/OFF
Memory Card: Micro SD Card up to 64GB (Class 10; in FAT32 format)
Backlight: Off ON/OFF
USB Port: USB 2.0, mini
Battery Capacity: 130mAh
PC Operation System: Windows XP/Vista/Windows 7/Windows 8/Window 10/Mac
On the front of the camera, there is the logo and to the right of it the camera lens. On the back on the top right-hand corner, there are 2 LED indicators that show when the camera is charging and when it is recording. In the column of the 4 buttons, the top button is on/off power button, the second is the upward selection button that also serves as the fast forward playback button and as the microphone on/off switch. Next, there is the OK button that starts and stops video recording and performs the “confirmed” function, and last, there is the downward selection button that also serves as the slow forward playback button and to turn the screen on or off.
On one side of the camera, there is a micro USB port on top for charging or data transfers, and a micro SD card slot below.
At the top of the dash cam to the left, there is the emergency mode button that you press to capture a photo while the camera is recording, and a long press, while the camera is recording, will put it in Parking Mode. To the right of the emergency mode button, is the connection that receives power for the camera once it is connected to the mount and the mount is plugged in. At the bottom of the camera as shown below is the HDMI port and the factory reset button.
The 3 pictures below are of the windshield mount and they show how it is positioned when connected to the dash cam, the mini USB power jack and how the power adapter is connected to the mount.
This dashcam really performs well. The settings are easy to navigate and the choices are very straightforward. The image stabilization works well and the video and images are clear even in overcast and/or rainy conditions. Its “tiny” size, it has no noticeable effect on your view when driving.
It includes features like 1080P/30 fps HD video with Supper Night Vision, seamless loop recording on micro SD cards up to 256GB, and a G-sensor that automatically detects a sudden shake/collision and locks the footage to prevent the video from being overwritten even in loop recording. The 24-hour Parking Monitor motion activated parking mode allows the camera to automatically record when it detects motion in front of your car. To take advantage of this feature, the power adapter should be plugged into an “always on” outlet or hard-wired to the battery. This way, if the dash cam is off and it detects a crash to the front of the vehicle, it will turn on and end recording after 20 seconds, and the recorded videos are saved and locked.
If you enable the time-lapse feature, the Vantrue N1 will keep taking photos at the set time interval and then auto edit them together to a video clip. This reduces the size of the video file. The dash cam also provides excellent audio quality. I also like that the power adapter has a nice blue LED on the end that plugs into your vehicle. Not only does it indicate power on/off, but it is a nice interior light.
What I like
- I love the size
- The video quality
- The features and ease of use
What can be improved
- The connector to the dash/windshield mount
Out of all of the dash cams that I have owned and/or tested, I like this one the best. It is so small that it does not present any type of bothersome obstruction of your view and yet it functions much like the bigger and more expensive dash cams. While it is not 4K, its footage is perfect for its function and quite “crisp and clean”. It is simple and effective, and gets an exuberant thumbs up from me!!
Where to buy: Amazon
Source: The sample for this review was provided by Vantrue.