What better way to roll down the open road capturing everything that is around you, than a dash cam! At least this was my idea in justifying the need for one before my recent journey. When returning home, I had hours of footage and a lot of different options, some great and some not so great to work with.
I had selected a base model dash cam, the GiiNii GD-80, to begin my experimentation with filming on the open road. The reviews I had found were pretty basic, nothing to difficult with use and overall it seemed like a good starting price point at only $39.95.
The packaging left a little to be desired in way of explanation. Though it said it captured video in a continuous loop, it did not instruct you to purchase a mini sd card to do so. It also did not mention if it did not did not produce sound, many do not.
I went out on a limb and picked up the camera, knowing I could return it if it did not address my needs and then ended up having to come back for the mini sd card following the realization that it in fact required one. The addition of the card was $13.98, making my total investment about $53 for my dash camera.
The battery life of the camera was short to say the least, but it did include a charging cord safe for plugging into an outlet in the car while driving, so the majority of the time using it to video it was in face plugged in.
The downfall of this, it took over the one plug in the car so no other devices could be charged while this camera was running. This ended up limiting time which footage could be shot.
The cord at times was cumbersome and heavy on the side of the camera, making it look a bit off kilter. For our uses this didn’t seem to matter but for someone needing a straight-forward viewpoint this could also be a negative.
Hours of footage later, it was time to look at what exactly we had gathered. I was overall pleased with the quality of image. The placement of the bracket had been at a nice angle and it provided nice images of the surroundings. When we had placed the camera facing us instead, the quality again was nice, however the sound was a bit lower than I would have liked for dash cam commentary. It picked up external sounds, like the radio very well, but voices were a bit quiet.
Overall I would give this camera 3 of 5 Bunnies. A good starter model for use but it left a bit to be desired in way of instructions and sound quality. The cord was a huge negative to us as it was cumbersome to our journey since it had to be plugged in just for the camera to function.