When looking for today’s best deals on dash cams, Garmin is a great place to start in the dash cam market. Dash cams have been around for quite a while now, but with the rise of digital tech increasing every year, staying up-to-date on image quality is crucial.
With this in mind, what makes Garmin the best brand for dash cams?
Garmin is always evolving all of its products, and whether you choose a convenient dash cam mini or a regular dash cam, this level of innovation is assured. You can expect superb HD video resolution and great maneuverability between the front and rear cameras.
In this roundup product review, we are going to review and analyze the features of a range of Garmin’s best dash cams.
Quick Overview: Our Top Picks of Garmin Devices for Dash Cams
Garmin Dash Cam Mini 2
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Garmin Dash Cam Tandem
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Garmin Dash Cam 67W
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Garmin Dash Cam 57
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Garmin Dash Cam 47
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Garmin BC 35
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Garmin BC 30
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Read on to find out which model suits your needs the best, as well as finding answers to some frequently asked questions about the best dash cams from Garmin.
About Garmin Dash Cams
It is an unfortunate fact of life that there are numerous bad drivers out on the road. Additionally, auto theft is also something that happens much more than people initially realize.
Dash cams are devices that are made specifically for front and rearview mirrors in vehicles. These devices can capture both amazing occurrences and mundane details that may actually become useful if unforeseen circumstances ever arise.
The superb video quality of an interior camera can capture accident footage as well as anything and everything when in parking mode. If you are ever in an accident, Garmin’s dash cameras can show recorded video as proof to confirm exactly what occurred during the accident.
So it won’t be the other person’s word against yours.
There are also times when Garmin dash cams are handy when an interaction with some sort of authority may not go the way it is supposed to go.
Thanks to pristine image quality in a high dynamic range and innovative dash cam features in each Garmin model, you have verifiable proof.
In parking mode, Garmin dash cams can automatically become active if your car is bumped, tampered with, or even touched forcibly.
This makes many dash cams from this brand a tried and true security measure thanks to these driver assistance features.
There is also motion detection that can alert you if your car is being cased.
This brand’s dash cams do all of this by recording to an internal SD card, and once the cam fills that up with all these clips, the oldest clips are overwritten first.
So you always have a fairly large wealth of clips going back in time to pull from if you ever need them.
Lastly, this brand’s dash cams typically have a rear screen (or, rear view camera) that allows you to look into the interior of your car from a front-facing view.
Some models also have a second rear-facing camera which is the opposite view from your rearview mirror. This particularly comes in handy if you are rear-ended in an accident.
Our top picks
With this in mind, let’s take a look at a wide range of Garmin dash cams:
- Garmin Dash Cam Mini 2
- Garmin Dash Cam Tandem
- Garmin Dash Cam 67W
- Garmin Dash Cam 57
- Garmin Dash Cam 47
- Garmin BC 35
- Garmin BS 30
When many people test dash cams, they find that a mini version suits their aesthetic needs better than a larger camera.
The Garmin Dash Cam Mini 2 attaches snugly and unobtrusively to your windshield and reduces the need of adding extra clutter to an already crowded front windshield space.
The Garmin Dash Cam Mini 2 is the best dash cam for those seeking a smaller camera with HD resolution video recording.
The Dash Cam Mini 2 is a top-notch dash cam with a tiny footprint that is also very easy to set up and use. This unit records high-quality video with full HD video recording.
This unit also has voice controls in addition to much-improved video quality over the first generation.
The primary feature of this dash cam is undeniably its size and customizable mounting options. So no matter what angle your windshield is, you will be able to get a straight shot of the image quality.
Another feature that makes this one of the best dash cams is that it weighs just a little over an ounce. So if you want your dash cam to be small and not weigh a lot to avoid falling off the windshield, this is certainly a superior unit in that regard.
The Garmin Dash Cam Mini 2 comes with two power supplies to ensure the wide dynamic range recording keeps working endlessly as long as the power supply stays connected.
The connection points for the power supply can be mounted in the down position on a magnetic mount or, if you have a scenario where you want to mount it in the up position, then you also have another cable that will meet these specifications. Either option works when connected to the traditional cigarette lighter plug-in vehicles.
The Mini certainly checks a lot of boxes in terms of its economical reach as an affordable dash cam. This unit is also the smallest of the brand’s compact dash cam models.
So, if you want the brand’s smallest dash cam with benefits such as both a premium dash cam as well as a budget dash cam, this is the model for you.
In addition to the mini, which is really a niche product, there are a wide range of other dash cam models from Garmin. Here are some other considerations.
One of the best features of the Garmin Tandem is both the interior and exterior facing views that are featured in superb video quality. This camera also tracks GPS, which makes it an excellent choice for cross-country trips.
The Tandem is a true, purpose-built powerhouse. This unit features two 180-degree fields of view lenses that record in tandem – hence the name.
This provides complete video coverage around you while driving both day and night with stellar night vision.
The front-facing lens, which you can attach to face forward from the rear view mirror, records in super HD 1440p to capture clear footage showing crucial vehicle details.
The interior lens, which can be attached to the flip side of the rear view mirror, captures a full view of the interior back to and beyond the rear window.
This lens is also equipped with Garmin’s NightGlo technology, which allows you to see driver and passenger activity in any lighting setting.
This is a small, pocket-sized unit. But despite the small size, this unit is packed with extra features. This excellent dash cam is critical for safe driving, which is why it is equipped with safety features that allow you not to be distracted by pushing buttons while you are driving.
This is achieved with superb video quality both as a front and rear camera, as well as voice control that allows drivers to keep their hands on the wheel, and use voice control features instead.
The voice control features are easy to use. Simply say “okay, Garmin” to alert the camera to save video, as well as start and stop audio recording.
In addition to the superb video quality, you also do not have to worry about constantly saving your footage. The automatic incident detection feature is what makes this truly one of the best dash cams.
This feature automatically saves footage when it detects that an incident has occurred.
Since the unit also has onboard GPS, it also captures where and when that event occurred. You can then share the footage accordingly through the Garmin Drive smartphone app via wi fi.
Car dash cams are expected to have safety features for when you are away from the vehicle, and the tandem is no exception.
This unit can record as both front and rear dash cams to record footage when you are away from the vehicle and alert emergency services if needed.
This is a superb dash cam.
- Versatile, compact, and easy-to-use
- Dual lens design for both front and rear camera view
- Features onboard GPS
- Features dual-channel, automatic emergency recording, and continuous loop recording
- The night vision quality is not great, and enhanced night vision would have been great on this cam
- The smartphone app features are not the best when you need to use the smartphone app for certain details
The best dash cam should feature great video quality, and fall in line with today’s best deals in what can be a saturated dash cam market. The Dash Cam 67W by Garmin is one such dash cam that meets these expectations.
This unit features 1440p high definition resolution, which works in conjunction with a feature known as Garmin clarity HDR optics, and between these two features, you can be assured of crystal clear video footage both night and day.
This dash cam features a 180-degree field of view, and this works great with featured wi fi connectivity as well as Bluetooth.
This also allows for easy connectivity to the Garmin Drive.
There is also live view monitoring for when you have your parked car in an area where you want to keep an eye on the surroundings.
Motion blur is easily avoided thanks to the incredible resolution of this dash cam.
The speed camera alerts also come in handy when you wish to use this unit as speed cameras to keep track of how fast you are travelling.
There are also voice controls to help you stay safer and to offer convenience when you are driving and needing to pay attention to the road.
Ultimately, the 67W is a decent model that comes with emergency alerts, adequate storage, and much more. This model is perfect for those wanting an impressive and small dash cam that is not a mini.
- Superb specifications, video quality, and recording makes this unit easily one of today’s best deals
- Very easy to install
- Comes with convenient drive assistance features
- Great safety features such as a parking guard and live view
- Some users find that the wide-angle of the lens warps the edges of the playback when you record video
- Numerous features can only be unlocked with additional purchases and kits
The best dash cam for those seeking a compact unit is undoubtedly the Dash Cam 57 by Garmin. This unit comes with a 2-inch screen that can record with superb clarity and playback.
A magnetic mount is also included which makes for easy applications on windshields and a design that doesn’t scratch or scrape the glass.
For those wanting a unit with the convenience of a battery, this one features a built-in lithium-ion battery, which works great if you need to temporarily unplug the unit to make various adjustments.
The unit comes preinstalled with a 16-gig SD card, which is great for retaining lots of footage for you to keep track of as time goes by.
This unit also comes with a G-sensor, which is great for detecting jolts of energy, movement, or disturbance, especially if the car is parked.
This unit has a viewing angle of 140 degrees, which makes it very affordable for those not seeking a higher-degree field.
These specifications, video quality details, as well as voice control all make the 57 model a compact and durable unit that can meet all of your needs.
- 1140p resolution at 60 frames per second
- The ability to access emergency services when needed
- Compact and durable
- The images can be a bit fuzzy when driving and recording at night
- The lack of touchscreen functionality is a bit inconvenient
- Since there is no filter, the glare can be distracting on days with bright sunshine
The smallest dash cams are always preferable for those wanting a small display for their dashcam while driving. The 47 model by Garmin is small but also powerful.
What makes this one of the best dash cam models is the incident detection feature. This is available on some of the other higher-end models we have covered, but it’s nice to see the feature here on a more affordable unit.
Incident detection works with a G-sensor that records jolts of energy that frequently occur when there is an accident.
This unit also has GPS coordinates that can be time-stamped based on the speed at which you are travelling. You can also choose between having this displayed on the screen or not.
The 1080p camera resolution is high definition and there is also a 140-degree viewing angle.
Ultimately, the 47 is perfect for those seeking a lower cost when compared to the models above it. You won’t get as much as what is available on those cameras, but there is certainly enough here.
- Comes with convenient free cloud storage for your video history
- HDR recording
- Compact and durable design
- The lens angle is quite small
- Notifications for driver assistance can be distracting
For some, the best dash cam can sometimes be found in a backup camera, and Garmin’s BC 35 unit is one of the best in this category.
The BC 35 is a wireless backup camera, which means you can use the camera for backing up your main recordings or for having a constant rearview when this is sometimes needed.
The BC 35 transmits video images wirelessly through wi fi, so you do not have to worry about the video playback syncing. There is a 160-degree horizontal angle view at all times. The color video output transmits all of this in crystal clear HD resolution.
- Built-in wi fi with perfect transmission between cameras
- Easily wires to constant power
- Transmission limitations can be frustrating
- Playback specifications, video quality, and audio can be glitchy
Like the BC 35, the BC 30 by Garmin works as a wireless backup camera with a transmission playback that allows you to see up to 45 ft away from the main cameras you have set up.
You can easily see what is behind you without having to strain and take you eyes off of what may also be in front of you as well.
This unit comes with 240p of resolution and records video with pristine clarity.
- Works with Garmin Nuvi devices since 2013
- Easy to setup
- Playback can be glitchy
What is the difference between Garmin Dash Cam and Garmin Backup?
The most important difference between a dash cam and a backup camera within the Garmin line of these cameras is that backup cameras can help avoid possible collisions since they include a full view of what is behind you.
This is particularly useful if you are hauling something behind your vehicle and need some extra vision to ensure full safety.
Backup cameras can also help you to park much more easily, and certainly more safely if you are towing something behind your vehicle.
With regular Garmin dash cams, you only get basic views of both the front and back, whereas the backup camera systems are specifically designed to help ease yourself into tight obstacles.
This is done by sending a mirror image to the main monitor or main Garmin device so you have the backup camera connected.
Garmin backup cameras can easily be mounted anywhere within a driver’s field of vision, but the rearview image is their main image capture and playback over the transmission.
Is Garmin a good dash cam brand?
Garmin makes some of the best dash cams on the market. Nearly all of their dash cams come equipped with a range of features that enhance the overall usability of dash cams with prices powered to appeal to both affordability and quality.
Many of the features that frequently win high praise include the range of incident detection additions, that alert drivers of possible collisions or other security measures.
Garmin dash cams are also highly versatile in their screen and recording resolution with video quality that is superb even on the lower end of their dash cam models.
Additionally, there are also backup cams made by the company which allows drivers innovation when towing or hauling trailers behind their vehicle.
If you need a dash cam, Garmin is certainly a brand worth considering.
Which Dash Cam should I buy
Each of these models is sure to get the job done, but in terms of durability and ease of use with stellar features, the Garmin Dashcam Mini 2 is the best of the bunch.
I find that what makes this unit stand out the most is its connectivity and seamless playback.
The connection points for the power supply can be mounted in the down position on a magnetic mount or if you have a scenario where you want to mount it in the up position, then you also have another cable that will meet these specifications.
Either option works when connected to the traditional cigarette lighter plug-in vehicles.
The Mini certainly checks a lot of boxes in terms of its economical reach as an affordable dash cam. This unit is also the smallest of the brand’s compact dash cam models–so it is important to keep that in mind if you do not prefer smaller dash cams.
A great secondary choice would be the Garmin Dash Cam Tandem.
How do I connect my Garmin dash cam to my phone?
To connect a Garmin dash cam to your phone, you will need the USB power adaptor that comes with the unit.
First, you will need to plug your Garmin dash cam into the vehicle and have your smartphone within 10 feet. Secondly, you need to make sure you have downloaded the Garmin Drive app, not to be confused with Garmin Connect.
You can then select “Garmin Dash Cam Series” on the Drive menu. You will then need to select the Drive App feature on your device as well as this will pair the two devices. Press the button four times and then press connect.
You are all set.
Is Garmin Dash Cam app free?
The Garmin Dash Cam App is also known as the Garmin Drive app. This app is completely free to download as are all of Garmin’s various apps for applicable devices.
Keep in mind that certain third-party apps may require a fee if there are additional features that you can add to your dash cam from these applicable vendors. But assessing the Garmin Drive app is always free granted you have an applicable device.
This is part of the benefit of having a Garmin device, and the app is almost always necessary to unlock your dash cam’s full potential.
What is the Garmin Drive app for?
The Garmin Drive app is specifically designed for automobile devices from the brand, such as dash cams, and smartphones that contain the app.
The app is the place where all of your important data information is stored. For dash cams, this includes all of your various video clips and recordings that you wish to keep.
All you have to do is open the app to see all of your stored information and to have access to the features contained within the device.
How do I transfer a dash cam video to my iPhone?
If you are using your iPhone as your phone that has Garmin Drive installed on it, then there is no need to transfer a video. Simply open the Drive app and view the video accordingly.
In summary, Garmin dash cams are some of the best dash cams currently on the market. You can choose from a range of different styles and screen and video playback resolutions.
The Garmin Dash Cam Mini 2 is a perfect model to consider if you want a small and compact dash cam, or you can opt for the Garmin Dash Cam Tandem for a moderately-sized unit. There are also a range of backup cams to choose from.
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