Here at Educated Driver, we’re all about safe driving. One item we often recommend to our readers is a dash camera. Readers often ask us, how much IS a dash cam? The good news is that they don’t cost much, and in fact you can get a pretty good one for less than $100. In this guide, we’ll explore dash cam cost in more detail and give you some helpful tips for those of you who are considering getting a dash camera.
How Much Is a Dash Cam?
A dash camera is a small camera that is attached to the inside of your windshield or your dashboard, that is used to record the road in front of you. Dash cam cost varies depending on the quality of the device you go with, but generally speaking, here are some estimates:
A low end/cheap dash camera will run you around $20-$50 for the camera itself. In general, we do not recommend this range of camera unless you are on a very tight budget. If you spend a bit more, you can get a much higher quality device.
A mid-range dash camera will run you around $50-$100 for the camera itself. Cameras in this price range are generally good values, as they offer better recording quality and better durability, without breaking the bank.
A high-end dash camera will run you around $100-$300+ for the camera itself. There are tons in the $100-$200 range that will be more than enough for most folks, with the super high-end $200+ cameras generally being unnecessary for most of our readers.
What About Accessories?
Most dash cams will come with everything you need to set them up, including mounting equipment, cables, etc. However, there’s one thing that’s essential that most dash cams do NOT come with, and that is an SD card. You need an SD card to operate any dash camera, and most cameras do not include one.
To purchase an SD card, you’re looking at an additional $10-$30+ depending on the brand and size you choose. For most people, we recommend going with a 64GB model (which will cost around $20), as they last longer than the smaller units, and obviously can store more footage. Dash cameras automatically erase old footage to make room for new footage, so there’s typically no need to get a huge card. We recommend getting a MicroSD card instead of a standard SD, because the MicroSD cards are more versatile.
Total Dash Cam Cost for Our Recommended Setup
Obviously, there are a huge range of prices for different products, resulting in all-in costs from $30 to $300+. For a straightforward estimate for our recommended setup, see the figures below.
Dash cam – $80-$100 (most of our favorite models fall in this price range)
MicroSD card – $20-$25 (64gb MicroSD card)
All in: $100-$125 + tax
So, there you have it! For more info, check out our guides for specific models we recommend. And if you have any friends wondering how much is a dash cam, feel free to refer them to this article.