Best Capacitor Dash Cams of 2020

There are two main types of dash cams when it comes to their internal power source. One has a built-in battery, typically a lithium ion battery, and the other type of dash cam has a built-in capacitor, which is sometime called a supercapacitor or super-capacitor. Capacitor based dash cams will do far better in hot climates.

Below is a list of the best dash cams for high heat weather or cold winters, both single lens and dual dash cams, along with a review of each one.

Our Top Pick of the Best Capacitor Dash Cams of 2020


#5 YI Nightscape Dash Cam

YI Nightscape Dash CamBest budget capacitor dash cam

If you’re looking for a single lens, front dash cam that is cheap in price, the YI Nightscape Dash Cam might be for you.

It can operate in high temperatures, up to 185 degrees, which is higher than many dash cams. This makes it a good choice for those looking for a budget dash cam to use in hot climates. If you live in a colder area this will also work well, as it can operate at a temp of -22°.

It captures 1080p HD video and uses a SONY STARVIS image sensor, which does well after dark, allowing the dash cam to record night time video. Video on the Nightscape is recorded at 60 frames per second (many other dash cams only capture 30 frames per second), which is good for capturing a clear image of license plates while you are driving.

With its relatively small shape and all black design, it makes it more discrete and harder to spot for potential thieves.

The Nightscape has wifi to sync to your phone. Using the YI Dash Cam app on your iOS or Android phone you can remotely connect to the YI Nightscape, allowing you to see a live video feed, download videos and change dash cam settings. Although you can use your phone to change settings on the dash cam, you can also use the built-in 2.4″ LCD screen on the back to go through the settings menu.

Overall the YI Nightscape is a good, compact dash cam for a low price, which has just about everything you would want if you only want a front camera setup and not a rear or dual dash cam.

Check Price

PROS

  • Works in -22° to 185° temperatures
  • Records 60 frames per second
  • All black, discrete design
  • Cheap price

CONS

  • Single camera setup
  • 140° lens angle is somewhat small

YI Nightscape Dash Cam Specs

  • -22°F to 185°F operating temp
  • 1080p HD Video
  • Sony STARVIS Image Sensor
  • 140° Lens Angle
  • 64GB microSD Capacity
  • WiFi, Built-In
  • 2.4” LCD Screen
  • Capacitor Powered

#4 Street Guardian SG9663DCPRO Dash Cam

Street Guardian SG9663DCPROThis capacitor based dash camera from Street Guardian is a dual channel setup with both front and rear cameras recording 1080p video at 30 frames per second. Both cameras use a Sony EXMOR image sensor, which provide clear and crisp video, both day and night.

Street Guardian recommends an operating temperature ranging from -4 to 158 degrees Fahrenheit.

The SG9663DCPRO has one of the largest memory card capacities of 512GB will give you well over 30 hours of total recording time. Although the dash cam “loop records”, meaning it will automatically record over the oldest video clips when the card gets full, so you can use a smaller memory card if you wanted. The parking mode has a “timelapse” feature where it takes a still picture every 1, 3 or 5 seconds, which would make having a large memory card capacity nice.

There is a built-in 2 inch LCD screen on the main front camera, where you can view saved videos and make dash cam setting changes. You can also remotely connect to the dash cam via WiFi by downloading the free Street Guardian app for iOS or Android. Once connected, you can see a live view and download videos right on to your phone, making it easy to share videos with your insurance company or police.

Street Guardian offers buyers free access to their Dashcam Viewer software for either Mac or PC computers. The program allows you to edit dash cam videos, take a snapshot picture and share videos.

Check Price

PROS

  • Reputable company with good customer service
  • Uses Sony image sensors
  • Large 512GB microSD card capacity
  • Built-in WiFi and GPS

CONS

  • Small lens angle of 127°
  • Priced higher than other dual dash cams

Street Guardian SG9663DCPRO Dash Cam Specs

  • 1080P HD Video @ 30FPS (Front & Rear)
  • SONY EXMOR image sensors on both cams
  • Novatek 96663 Processor
  • 512GB microSD Capacity
  • 127° Lens Angle
  • Parking mode with motion & impact detection
  • Operating temperature: -4° to 158° Fahrenheit.
  • Capacitor Powered

#3 VIOFO A129 Pro Duo Dash Cam

A129 Pro Duo Dash CamBest all around value for a dual dash cam with capacitor

The A129 Pro Duo is a low priced dual dash cam setup that has real 4K video on the front camera and 1080p HD video on the rear cam. Both cameras use a Sony image sensor, which are known for their good night vision and crisp day time video.

The VIOFO A129 Duo Pro can run in temperatures ranging from -4 to 150 degrees Fahrenheit.

Using the built-in Wifi you can use the free VIOFO app on your smartphone or tablet to watch videos, download them to post online and make dash cam setting changes.

With its included GPS module that is part of the mount, you can watermark your videos with your coordinates and speed as you drive. This feature can easily be disabled. The GPS automatically sets the right date and time on the dash cam, which can be helpful while doing an insurance claim after an accident.

The main front camera is all black and uses a wedge shaped design and an adhesive mount. This makes it easy to mount it up behind your rear view mirror and out of site. A dash cam is something that you should be able to set and forget, so you don’t really need to be able to see it. It makes a subtle start up noise when you start your car to let you know it has turned on and started recording.

It comes with the standard parking mode features like motion and impact detection, as well as more advanced option like “buffered” parking mode. Buffered parking mode continuously records 15 seconds and then records over that over and over again, so if an accident does happen you have the first 15 seconds of the incident (like a hit and run in a parking lot).

Check Price

PROS

  • Good price for dual dash cam with 4K (real 4K)
  • Stealth all black, discrete design and shape
  • Buffered parking mode (captures video before something happens)
  • WiFi with APP and GPS

CONS

  • Somewhat small lens angle of 130°

A129 Duo Pro Dash Cam Specs

  • 4K UHD (3840x2160p) Front, 1080p (1920x1080P) Rear
  • Sony 8MP IMX317 Image Sensor Front, Sony 2MP IMX 291 Rear
  • 130° Front Lens Angle, 140° Rear
  • 256GB microSD Capacity
  • Parking mode: buffered, motion and impact detection
  • WiFi, built-in
  • GPS module included, part of mount
  • Capacitor powered
  • Operating Temperature: 14 °F to 149 °F
  • Storage Temperature: -4 °F to 159 °F

#2 THINKWARE U1000 4K Dash Cam

THINKWARE U1000 4K DashCamThe U1000 is one of only a few capacitor based dash cameras currently sold that shoots real 4K video (many of the others you might see on Amazon are not real 4K – list of real 4K dash cams). Aside from all its other good features, this is one of the main reasons why we have put this on our list of best super capacitor based dash cams.

THINKWARE has a good reputation in the dash cam world for consistently putting out quality dash cams year after year. The U1000 dash cam has all the features you would expect to find on a high end camera system, like good parking mode features, night vision, 8MP image sensor for 4K video, cloud integration, and a radar feature.

Operating temperature on the U1000 ranges from 14 degree to 140 degrees.

The THINKWARE Cloud app allows you to connect your iOS or Android smartphone directly to the U1000 dash cam, letting you see a live view from the cam, download videos on to your phone and make setting changes to the camera.

Having a 2nd, or dual dash cam setup with the U1000 can easily be done by getting the rear camera, which is usually part of a package deal. This will give you full video coverage, for both front and rear on your car or truck. Since the rear camera plugs into the main front camera unit, you don’t need to buy a second memory card, it shares the same one.

THINKWARE offers an option RADAR module which works with the parking mode feature. Going beyond the typical motion and impact detection most dash cams offer, the RADAR module is different than motion detection in that it only picks up vehicles via radar. This can be good if you don’t want to always have it going off when someone walks by, only when a car drives by (or hits your car).

Check Price

PROS

  • 4K video with 2K rear video
  • Has built-in GPS
  • Can operate in temps as high as 140°
  • Good parking mode features

CONS

  • Priced higher than mid level dash cams

THINKWARE U1000 Dash Cam Specs

  • 4K UHD (3840x2160p) video
  • 8.42MP, Sony Exmor R STARVIS image sensor
  • 150° Lens angle front, 156° rear
  • 128GB microSD Capacity
  • Parking mode with motion & impact detection
  • WiFi, Built-In
  • GPS, Built-In
  • Capacitor Powered

#1 BlackVue DR900S Dash Cam

BlackVue DR900S Capacitor Dash CamOur number one pick for the best capacitor dual dash cam is the BlackVue DR900S

BlackVue is known for their high end dash cam models that are housed in a small, all black tube shaped housing unit, making them more discrete and less visible than most dash cams.

We chose the DR900S as our top chose because it has an operating temperature of -4 degrees up to over 150 degrees. Making it a good chose for those who live down south who get hot summers or those who live up north and have cold winters.

The front camera records video in real 4K (3840×2160 @ 30FPS) and the rear camera is 1080p.

BlackVue has some of the most advanced parking mode features out of any other dash cam company on the market. With its capacitor, you can leave your car parked in high heats and know the parking mode will still be ready to detect a hit and run, or to automatically turn on if it detects motion. Using the BlackVue Cloud service, you can set the dash cam up to a mobile hot spot and have it remotely send alerts to your phone if one of the parking mode features detects an impact or motion.

There is a free BlackVue App for iOS and Android that will allow you to remotely connect your dash cam to your smart phone or tablet, which uses the DR900S’ built-in wifi. When connected you can download videos right on to your phone, make changes to the settings and see a live view of the dash cam.

Built-in GPS will allow you to track driving routes and watermark your videos with your speed and coordinates. If you don’t want to use this feature it can easily be disabled in the settings area.

Check Price

PROS

  • Discrete small all black design for stealth
  • Records real 4K video
  • Trusted dash cam company with good warranty and customer service
  • Good in hot weather

CONS

  • High price point

BlackVue DR900S Dash Cam Specs

  • Real 4K Video (3840×2160 @ 30FPS)
  • 8MP Image Sensor
  • 162° Lens Angle
  • 256GB microSD Capacity
  • GPS, built-in
  • WiFi, built-in
  • Parking mode with motion & impact detection
  • Capacitor powered

Capacitor Based Dash Cam Buying Guide

One of the biggest misconceptions about batteries in dash cams is that they are meant to power the device like a battery would in a digital camera or GoPro. Dash cams are not supposed to be powered by their internal battery, they are supposed to be plugged into a constant power supply like your cars CIG adapter or an external battery pack.

The real purpose of a battery or capacitor in a dash cam

The main purpose of a capacitor or battery in a dash cam is to save the last video file when you turn your car off and it loses power. Because of this, the battery is very small and does not hold a charge for a long period of time. This is why you can also have a capacitor in it instead of a battery. The capacitor can only power the dash cam for a moment, just long enough to save the last video file.

Capacitors are better

Batteries are vulnerable to high heats and cold temperatures, which is why you are seeing more and more dash cams using a capacitor rather than a lithium ion battery. A battery will also wear out over time, while a capacitor has a much longer life span.

Dash cam heat shield

Having your car parked in the hot sun all day can bring the inside temps to extreme levels. Some people have tried to install various types of heat shields around their dash cameras. If you have a capacitor based dash cam you should be fine parked in the hot sun on most days, however you might want to consider using a car windshield heat shield like this, which will keep the overall temperatures down in your car. Although this might get in the way of the dash cam lens if you plan to use its parking mode features.