Dual lense dash cams capture both the road ahead (and any hazards it might present) and the cabin, the interior of your car. For that reason, dual dash cams are very useful to people that spend a lot of time on the road and share their car with other passengers. Their usefulness cannot be overstated for taxi drivers, limousine drivers, carpool drivers, public transportation drivers, fleet vehicles, Uber, Lyft & other rideshare platform drivers.
The scenarios where a dual lense dash camera might save your skin are practically unlimited:
- undeserved tickets & fines
- accidents with no witnesses
- to prove that a passenger damaged your vehicle and charge him or her repair fees
- to prove that a passenger made a mess in your vehicle (including vomit, yuck) and charge him or her cleanup fees
- to disprove untrue allegations, such as sexual assault claims.
“You better invest in a dashcam because being an Uber driver is putting your life in jeopardy[..] It could save your life, bro. It saved mine.” This is what an Uber driver had to say after being threatened by a screaming passenger that she will falsely accuse him of rape.
Yes, sure, there are few chances that something like this will actually happen to you, but a dual dash camera can prevent so many other bad situations that you should at least consider the pros and cons of owning such a device.
Are Dash Cams Legal To Use By Rideshare And Taxi Drivers?
Uber allows the use of video cameras during rides done with their platform, but they encourage drivers to check their local regulations. Driver Income also strongly encourages you to check your local laws before using a recording device inside your vehicle.
Disclosing that you might be recording your passengers is a very good first step. Apparently there are 11 states that require a two party consent (both parties need to give their consent for the conversation to be recorded). Posting a warning sign is also a very good idea. In some of the states it is enough just to let your passengers know that you might be recording their conversation and you do not need to get their explicit consent. Because the word “conversation” is used in a lot of these laws, you should pay even more attention to the laws if you are recording audio inside your vehicle.
If you want to let your passengers know that they are being recorded, there are “dash cam in use” decals made especially for Uber, Lyft and taxi drivers that you can put in your car.
The Digital Media Law Project has a list with some of the recording laws for individual states. It pays to read them, since they might protect you from 5 million dollar lawsuits. Such as in the case of Benjamin Golden, a former Taco Bell executive that sued the Uber driver that he attacked for “illegally recording him”. We live in a crazy world, what can I say.
Do not publicly share or in any other way make the recording available without consulting a lawyer first. Use your dashcam only for its intended purpose – to protect yourself from false allegations and to fight unfair fines and tickets.
Special consideration needs to be given to recordings of police officers or other government officials. Cameras might also help protect passengers from each other (such as on Uber Pool or Lyft Line rides) and make them feel safer sharing a ride with a driver they do not know.
Whew, we’re done with the hard part.
Single vs Dual Dash Cams
Depending on your needs, installing a single dash cam might also have a few advantages. One that I can think of right off the bat is having more models and features to choose from. So, you might decide to buy a single dash cam versus a dual one. If that is the case, you can always add an interior dash cam at a later time.
I personally prefer a dual lense camera for the car that I use for ridesharing. The are several reasons for my choice:
- space – using 2 cameras instead a single, multifunction one might take more room or reduce the windshield’s viewable area
- cost – after you add up memory cards and everything else, the cost for 2 single dash cams versus a combo one might be higher
- installation and cabling – it will take twice the effort to install them. It will require you to install two times as many cables
Now, I am here to help you decide if you should consider buying such a camera in the first place. For that reason, I am going to walk you through the most important features you should expect a dual dash cam to have, including price and its overall ability to protect you and your passengers.
Best Dual Dash Cams Compared
Here are a few dual dash camera features you should consider before buying one:
- night vision – it can record quality videos even in low light. Night vision is achieved by using IR lights
- resolution – it will also affect the video quality
- G sensor – it is a sensor that detects shock or impact and automatically saves the video in a special folder where it cannot be rewritten
- GPS – it records your speed. Might be useful to prove that speeding was not the cause of whatever happened or might be used to incriminate you if you were speeding. A lot of dash cams require you to buy a separate addon.
- parking monitor with motion detector – it automatically starts recording when motion is detected even when the car is parked. This feature usually requires hardwiring – connecting the camera to your car’s battery, fuse box or another external battery.
- camera angle – the angle that is recorded by the camera. The wider the angle, to more space the dash cam is going to cover
- good support and easy returns. Just in case.
- price. Because you want to get the best price/quality ratio available.
I have used all these features (their availability and performance) to rate the best dual lense dash cams available in 2017:
- Built in GPS
- Includes 32 GB memory card
- Phone app
- Separate video file for front and interior camera
- Suction cup does not work well, you might need adhesive to install it
- Dual 1080P camera with night vision
- Auto recording triggered by motion detector; G shock sensor
- Audio recording
- G sensor that puts video into a special folder where it cannot be deleted after a shock is detected
- 18 month warranty
- GPS is not included - you need to buy the addon you you want that function
- Memory card not included - supports up to 64 GB memory card
- Some customers complain about receiving faulty units
Vantrue N2 Pro sports a full range of features and a solid 18 month warranty. You will have to spend a little extra if you want to get a bigger memory card (increases the time you can record before older clips are written over) and the GPS addon (records your driving speed). However, it is a very good choice if you drive for a living as you will get lots of use out of it.
- Includes 32 GB card
- Fits over mirror and acts like one when the display is off
- Built in microphone & speaker
- No GPS function or addon
- Tight fit for some mirrors
- When both cameras (front & interior) are on, they create a single, split screen recording
- No shock sensor
- Low price
- GPS included
- 1 hour battery
- SD card not included
- Some people had issues with an older version of the camera
It can be hard to choose the best dual lense dash cam if you are an Uber, Lyft or taxi driver. That is because there are a lot of things to consider, such as if you are legally allowed to record your passengers, the camera features, ease of installation, etc. My personal opinion is that one of the best cameras you can find on the market (at the same price range) is the Transcend 32GB Drive Pro 520 Car Video Recorder.