Apeman are perhaps better known for the excellent range of Action Cameras but this new Dash Cam maintains their reputation for quality and at £39.99 is perhaps the lowest priced dual-lens model I have yet tried.
Insurance fraud grows daily and one way of protecting yourself from driving-related scams is to install a dashcam. Dashcams such as this one are positioned discreetly pointing forwards through the front window and record all your driving activity. The dashcam turns on automatically when the car is started and off again a short time after the engine is turned off. It records continuously in short recordings onto a memory card that seamlessly dovetails together when played back. When the card is full the camera records over the oldest recording. A good camera should have a G-Sensor that will automatically flag any recording containing a possible impact and not record over it.
In the box are the front camera, rear camera, fixing kits for each, a mounting tool and a well written and easy to read User Guide. Build quality seems fine, as would be expected from Apeman, with nothing looking likely to fall off or pack in anytime soon. The User Guide is one of the best I have seen: well written, nicely printed and a decent size.
Unlike with many more expensive rivals, there was no SD card and the user must supply their own. This was a pity as everything else was included and the camera will not work without it.
Unlike with most dashcams, this system is supplied with a second small waterproof camera that is attached by cable to the front camera and can be positioned in the back window or above the rear licence plate to continuously record activity behind the car in addition to the forward video recorded by the main camera. The rear camera is connected by a 6M cable to a socket on the main camera. The video from the rear cam can be viewed on and/or recorded by the front camera. The front camera lens has a wider than normal 170° angle of view. The video from both cameras is recorded automatically with a picture in picture or split-screen viewing option available.
Setting it up was not too hard and the menu could be navigated on the bright 2.0-inch screen easily but you should only need to configure it once. Fixing the camera behind the mirror on my Toyota Aygo was easy enough and the cables were easily long enough for both cameras. Fitting the second camera was more of a chore as the cable has to be wound through the car from front to back but once done there should be no need to adjust it again. The rear camera is optional as the main camera will work perfectly well without it.
The device uses a microSD card up to 32GB but makes sure you use a good quality class 10 card from a known manufacturer, Many people blame video failings on the camera when the cause is a cheap or low-end memory card. It is a pity no suitable card was included in the box.
The image quality was excellent for a camera in this price range although in low light conditions the image quality dropped slightly. I include some driving footage on my unboxing video but keep in mind that the uploaded video is compressed greatly so it can serve only to show the brightness and clarity of the video rather than the resolution.
This is a budget-priced dashcam but offers all the features you will need. All you do need is reliable auto On/Off, a decent quality front-facing HD camera with a G-Sensor. Don’t complain about the lack of GPS antenna because although it can be fun at first to trace your route on the map remember that in the event of an incident the police may review all the files on the card and use what they find against you. You can add an Apeman antenna for £13.99 if you feel you need it. It has a microphone which can be useful if you are quick-witted enough to read aloud the numbers of the cars involved. It has parking mode (Motion Detection) but I have never found this to be of much use in any camera due to the delay before recording starts. The only worthwhile feature lacking for me is that of second dual write TF card, handy so you always have a copy of the card handed to the police.
This is a decent quality but well-priced dashcam which should meet all your needs. It is attractive and discreet in appearance and capable of giving good quality results. It has several high-end specialised features not needed for normal use. The price is great given the feature set and the addition of the second camera.
Good build quality
Picture in Picture screen
No GPS module
No memory card included
No HDMI port
More Info and Purchase