It’s no secret that car traf­fic is a source of increased dan­ger. In par­tic­u­lar, about 200,000 traf­fic acci­dents a year occur on the roads of our coun­try. None of the dri­vers are immune (in a fig­u­ra­tive sense) from this prob­lem. Of course, you need to fol­low the rules of the road and mon­i­tor the tech­ni­cal con­di­tion of the car, but what if the acci­dent is not your fault? In this case, a DVR can be very help­ful, which can prove it (and help some­one else with it).

Xiao­mi Yi Car WiFi DVR

So, a car DVR is a video cam­era with­out opti­cal zoom, designed for con­tin­u­ous loop record­ingwith car mount and charg­er. At the same time, DVRs have a wide-angle lens, as well as a min­i­mum num­ber of “bells and whis­tles” that are unnec­es­sary for their func­tion.

DVRs have a set of qual­i­ties and char­ac­ter­is­tics that deter­mine how good or bad they are com­pared to oth­er sim­i­lar devices. Our arti­cle will tell about them.

Movie resolution

This is per­haps the main tech­ni­cal char­ac­ter­is­tic of the reg­is­trar. She is respon­si­ble for how the details on the video will be dis­tin­guish­able. In par­tic­u­lar, for those sit­u­a­tions in which video recorders are used, it will be espe­cial­ly impor­tant, for exam­ple, to see the license plate num­ber of the car that is in the frame.

Today, Full­HD res­o­lu­tion, that is, 1920x1080, remains quite rel­e­vant, although there are mod­els with a high­er val­ue of this indi­ca­tor. In fact, a high res­o­lu­tion is real­ly use­ful, since the reg­is­trar may need only one frame with a clear car num­ber.

How­ev­er, you should not “behave” sole­ly on the res­o­lu­tion of the pic­ture. The fact is that for cheap mod­els (espe­cial­ly lit­tle-known man­u­fac­tur­ers) it can turn out to be inter­po­lat­ed, that is, arti­fi­cial­ly processed upwards.

Frames per second

The DVR is obvi­ous­ly designed to cap­ture mov­ing objects, and this move­ment can be very fast. For exam­ple, two cars mov­ing towards each oth­er at a speed of 60 kilo­me­ters per hour approach each oth­er at a speed of 33 meters per sec­ond. There­fore, the reg­is­trar must have a fre­quen­cy of at least 24 frames per sec­ond, and prefer­ably 50 or 60.

Here we come to the fact that the reg­is­trar must sup­port any of the mod­ern video for­mats: MPEG4, AVCHD and so on, oth­er­wise high frame rate at high res­o­lu­tion will not be pos­si­ble.

If you are an advanced user, you can pay atten­tion to the mod­el proces­sor reg­is­trar, since it is he who is respon­si­ble for the vol­ume of the video stream. The more pow­er­ful it is, the bet­ter.

Image enhancement features

In addi­tion to res­o­lu­tion, the fol­low­ing func­tions can affect the pic­ture qual­i­ty of the DVR:

Image sta­bi­liz­er — reduces the “jit­ter” of the pic­ture caused by shak­ing and vibra­tion of the engine.

infrared illu­mi­na­tion — allows you to shoot in the dark, if avail­able night mode. If it is absent, when choos­ing, you should pay atten­tion to the char­ac­ter­is­tic of the min­i­mum illu­mi­na­tion of the reg­is­trar — it is just respon­si­ble for the qual­i­ty of the pic­ture at night.

WDR (Wide Dynam­ic Range) func­tion — dynam­ic range expan­sion — reduces, up to a cer­tain lim­it, flare from the sun, over­ex­po­sure in the sky, and so on.

Lens viewing angle

From lens field of view depends on whether this or that object gets into the frame of the DVR, so here the more, the bet­ter. True, with an increase in the angle, the qual­i­ty of the image as a whole is lost, but in real life this can be neglect­ed.

On com­mon mod­els, the angle can be 120 to 170 degrees. It should be not­ed that the larg­er the angle, the more the effect of the fish­eye lens is man­i­fest­ed, that is, the “cur­va­ture” of the pic­ture. We can say that in the case of devel­op­ing optics for DVRs, man­u­fac­tur­ers do not seek to com­pen­sate for these geo­met­ric dis­tor­tions, since the beau­ty of the pic­ture in this case is com­plete­ly unnec­es­sary.

Loop recording

All DVRs do not record video in one file, but break it into seg­ments with a cer­tain dura­tion. When the mem­o­ry capac­i­ty is exhaust­ed, the old­est file is delet­ed and a new one is writ­ten in its place. Accord­ing­ly, the reg­is­trars have the abil­i­ty to choose the length (in min­utes) of these seg­ments.

When choos­ing, we also advise you to find out if there are gaps in the record between these seg­ments; you can find out, for exam­ple, from reviews on the Inter­net.

memory and autonomy

DVRs, as a rule, do not have built-in mem­o­ry, but use SD or MicroSD mem­o­ry cards. There may be a lim­it on the max­i­mum size of the mem­o­ry card, so if you need 64 or 126 GB of mem­o­ry, you should pay atten­tion to this.

As for auton­o­my, here you can observe a great vari­ety. So, some devices can work on bat­tery pow­er for only 1 minute, and this can be incon­ve­nient. At the same time, most pop­u­lar mod­els now work 2 hours or more.

Display size and resolution

With this char­ac­ter­is­tic, every­thing is quite obvi­ous. A good screen will allow you to assess the pic­ture of the inci­dent direct­ly on the road, and is also more con­ve­nient for set­tings. There are also mod­els with two dis­plays, such as the Street Storm STR-9970 Twin.

DVR Street Storm STR-9970 Twin

Combination with other devices

In addi­tion to the DVR, in the car, for exam­ple, a radar detec­tor and a GPS nav­i­ga­tor can be used. In the case when these are sep­a­rate devices, the view from the dri­ver’s seat is reduced, sev­er­al charg­ing cables are required. It is very uncom­fort­able. There­fore, video recorders com­bined with radar detec­tor.

DVR SHO-ME Com­bo 1

When choos­ing such a device, you should pay atten­tion to the capa­bil­i­ties of the radar detec­tor.

First, this fre­quen­cy rangesin which the radar detec­tor works. K, Ka, Ku, X bands can be applied.

Also, the spec­i­fi­ca­tions may indi­cate which spe­cif­ic radar mod­els the device detects.

Mod­ern speed meters can also use laser ray for your work. Mod­ern radar detec­tors can also detect it, how­ev­er, not all of them, and there­fore you should pay atten­tion to this when choos­ing a device.

An impor­tant char­ac­ter­is­tic of a radar detec­tor is its selec­tiv­i­ty, that is, the abil­i­ty to iso­late the most dan­ger­ous among all sig­nals. Radar detec­tors with low selec­tiv­i­ty will, for exam­ple, respond to auto­mat­ic super­mar­ket doors.

Also, it is worth men­tion­ing such a use­ful func­tion for the reg­is­trar as GPS. If avail­able, the device can record the speed and loca­tion of the car and dis­play them on the video. This will allow you to once again not prove your case in the event of an acci­dent.

Automatic start recording, motion and shock sensors

The main fea­tures that make the DVR con­ve­nient for its task are pre­cise­ly these func­tions.

Auto start record­ingdepend­ing on the man­u­fac­tur­er, can be per­formed when pow­er is sup­plied to the recorder (when the car is start­ed), or when the move­ment starts.

Motion Sen­sor in the frame also starts record­ing, allow­ing, for exam­ple, to use the DVR as a sta­tion­ary sur­veil­lance cam­era.

Shock sen­sor (G‑sensor) serves to ensure that in the event of an acci­dent, the reg­is­trar auto­mat­i­cal­ly saves the record­ing seg­ment record­ed at that moment.


What­ev­er the tech­ni­cal char­ac­ter­is­tics of the DVR, it is the mount that can become deci­sive when choos­ing. First, there are sev­er­al types:

  1. on a suc­tion cup. This type of mount­ing is the most com­mon, con­ve­nient because it can be used in almost any car, the recorder can always be removed and rein­stalled. The down­side is that the suc­tion cup must be air­tight, fit snug­ly against the glass, oth­er­wise the mount will be frag­ile. and in the event of an impact, such a mount may not be reli­able enough.

  2. Adhe­sive tape mount — more secure than a suc­tion cup, but does not allow you to dis­man­tle and install the mount as eas­i­ly.

  3. Video recorder in the case rear view mir­rors.

  4. The advan­tages and dis­ad­van­tages of such a solu­tion are obvi­ous. On the one hand, the device does not occu­py a sep­a­rate place in front of the wind­shield, on the oth­er hand, the rear-view mir­ror itself is small­er due to the dis­play locat­ed on it.

The qual­i­ty of the con­nec­tion of the recorder body with the mount is also impor­tant. The fact is that the DVR must be fixed as rigid­ly as pos­si­ble, in order to avoid vibra­tion. No long, flex­i­ble, swiv­el con­nec­tions are suit­able here. In addi­tion, the mount to the body of the reg­is­trar should be locat­ed as close as pos­si­ble to its cen­ter of grav­i­ty, which reduces the load on the mounts.


We can say that a good car DVR does not remind you of itself when it is not need­ed. But at a crit­i­cal moment, it may turn out that this device can save you from very seri­ous trou­bles. There­fore, you should not save and buy the cheap­est mod­el, espe­cial­ly since, in addi­tion to per­for­mance, reli­a­bil­i­ty is also impor­tant for it, espe­cial­ly under con­di­tions of con­stant shak­ing and tem­per­a­ture changes.

In gen­er­al, there may be some points that are not men­tioned in our arti­cle, but, in our opin­ion, it pro­vides enough infor­ma­tion to make the right choice.


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