Having a rear-view mirror with a DVR in your car is convenient since such devices have a simple design, are invisible (externally, it is just a rear-view mirror), provide an excellent field of view, and most often have the ability to connect an additional rear-view camera.
The video recorder in such a case is built directly into the mirror body, which means it will not catch the eye and attract unwanted attention. However, in order to become the owner of a functional and modern device, it is very important to know the main characteristics that you should look at when choosing. We will talk about this in more detail.
What Is A mirror Dashcam?
The name of this device speaks for itself. This is a recorder in the form of a car’s rear-view mirror. There is a display on the mirror, with the help of which you can view the footage or make settings at any time.
Mirror dash cams of this type can be equipped with an additional rearview camera. As for the rest, the “mirror” is the same device as the classic form factor DVR. Also, some manufacturers equip models with functionality that you will not find in a regular registrar. But more on that later.
What Is The Difference From Regular Dashcams?
1. The Form Factor
The device is larger than a conventional car video recorder. But after installation of the rear-view mirror, the dimensions of the device are not felt at all. The smooth surface of the recorder serves as a mirror for the view behind the car, thus fully justifying the size of the device.
2. Convenient Installation
There is no need to allocate space on the windshield for the installation of the mirror recorder. Such devices are attached directly to the mirror using convenient and reliable mounts.
3. The Lens
Most often, such DVRs are equipped with conventional optical lenses, but there are also more expensive models with FishEye lenses on the market. Such devices have a 360° viewing angle. This allows you to capture the situation in front of the car, behind, on the sides, and even inside the cabin.
How To Choose A Mirror Dashcam?
There are several key parameters that you should be guided by when choosing a mirror DVR:
A modern device must have a good resolution, since the picture quality directly depends on this, it is recommended to choose devices with an indicator of 1920 x 1080 pixels (FullHD or 1080p). Naturally, the higher this characteristic, the better the picture. However, the price of a recorder with a higher resolution will be higher.
This parameter affects which section of the road fits into the camera lens. Obviously, the larger the angle, the more road space the camera will capture. The minimum recommended value is 120 degrees.
Frames Rate Per Second (FPS)
This characteristic is also important, as it affects the smoothness of the recording. The frequency must be at least 30 fps. If the value is less, then the video may not play smoothly, but with glitches or other video artifacts.
At a minimum, the device should have a shock sensor or G-sensor. It provides the ability to save records in the event of an accident, since the files are placed in a special non-erasable area of the memory card.
In this mode, the recorder provides the ability to monitor what is happening around the car while you’re parking. As soon as movement or some obstacles are detected near the car, the camera will automatically activate and record.
A very useful feature, when a rear view camera is connected, marking colored lines appear on the mirror screen, which make it easier to perform any reverse maneuvers.
Night Vision Function
The lighting is usually very dim at night, so a big plus is that the camera is capable of working in such conditions and at the same time providing a readable picture of good quality.
The higher the capacity of the built-in battery, the longer the device will be able to record offline, without access to the on-board power supply.
Cons And Pros Of A Mirror DVR
Like any technical device, car mirrors with video recorder have a complex technical design and certain operating features. Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons that affect their usability.
- Outwardly, such a car DVR is indistinguishable from a standard rear-view mirror, the built-in camera is practically invisible from the outside, so the risk that they will be stolen is noticeably less.
- Such devices are often slightly larger than standard mirrors, which contributes to improved visibility, that is, increased safety and driving comfort.
- Very simple installation, no complicated manipulations required.
- The articulated mount is very convenient, as it can be used to adjust the angle of view of the recorder so that the required section of the road gets into the lens.
- The absence of foreign objects on the windshield of the car – nothing obstructs the view and does not distract the driver, this also has a beneficial effect on the comfort and safety of driving.
- All control buttons are usually located on the front panel of the device and access to them is always free, so it is very easy to set up and regulate the operation of the DVR.
- Since such mirrors have built-in several useful devices at the same time (recorder, rear camera, GPS-navigator, etc.), then the purchase is cost-effective, you do not have to buy them separately.
- Anti-glare coating, protects against dazzle when the headlights from behind the walking cars hit the mirror.
- When you turn on various applications on the device, the recording is not blocked, the DVR continues to record video in normal mode.
However, despite the large number of advantages, DVRs of this type also have some disadvantages:
- When choosing, you need to look at the dimensions of the rear-view mirror installed in your car, that is, you need to select the registrar specifically for the mirror, so that later there will be no problems due to the fact that the device does not match the length of the mount or the thickness of the mirror.
- It is necessary to take into account the fact that standard mirrors have mounts designed for the weight of this very mirror, and when attaching an overlay with a recorder to it, an unpleasant situation may arise when the mount cannot withstand the increased load.
In conclusion, it should be noted that each car enthusiast has his own goals when buying a car DVR device. Some prefer to purchase only branded models, for others, the functionality of the device is an important factor, for others, the price is considered the fundamental criterion. The modern market is rich in a variety of options and models of the recorder mirror, suitable for the driver in one way or another.
We hope that this article will help you to choose the best mirror dash cam that suits all your needs.