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Garmin dash cam 55 first made its name with the company’s GPS units. They were easy to install, user-friendly, and displayed accurate maps. Now that most vehicles and smartphones have GPS mapping installed, these dashboard mounts are becoming obsolete.
Packed with familiar and new features, there is a reason why the Garmin Dash cam 55 is a popular option with safety conscience drivers.
There is a lot packed into this small dashcam, even if it is a basic model. It also comes at an affordable price that is surprising considering all that it can do.
Everything you need to set this Garmin Dash cam 55 up and securely mount it is included. The camera comes with a 13.5’ power cord, a USB cable, an 8GB MicroSD card and two mounts with magnets.
It’s easy to mount the camera. The magnets will securely attach it to your windshield or dashboard. Just remove the adhesive backing on the magnets and stick the dash cam in place.
Garmin’s dash cam 55 has a slim and sleek design. It takes up very little space on your dashboard window. You will still have a clear line of sight out the window, even when the dash cam is mounted.
The camera is a sleek black color and constructed from durable, lightweight plastic. The silver control buttons are on the side. Not only do they make it easy to use the camera, but the four side buttons add to its visual appeal.
The 55 model is a step up from the original Garmin 45 dash cam. The original silver ring has been replaced by bronze around the lens, which has been upgraded to a resolution of 1440p.
As soon as you start driving the Garmin Dash cam 55’s two-inch screen lights up. After thirty seconds, it will “go dark” to help prevent distractions while you are driving. However, once the dashcam is on it will continue to record in 1440p, even when the display screen is dark. It will only stop recording when the vehicle is turned off or if you stop the recording manually.
Video clarity is impressive with this small dash cam, especially in daylight. Road signs are clearly captured, along with license plates. The only, minor issue with video clarity occurs at night. Bright streetlights and headlights from passing vehicles can cause glare. Images can still be made out, only not as clear as they would be during the day.
Instead of having to press buttons, Garmin 55 comes with voice control. To start recording video, simply say “okay Garmin” and the dashcam automatically shows the display screen with four options. You can choose from saving videos, recording audio, taking a picture or initiating Travelaspe.
All of the voice commands respond quickly and easily. This way you can control the dash cam without taking your hands off the wheel when driving.
The Garmin 55 dashcam is packed with features. Some are designed to improve safety. This includes warnings for possible impending forward collisions and alerts if you start drifting out of your lane. It will also warn you if another driver is starting to drift towards your vehicle.
Another great feature is that the dash cam will warn you when traffic is moving ahead of you. This way you can avoid angry honks from drivers behind you.
Travelaspe is a feature unique to Garmin. It is fun, easy to use and makes sharing the sights on your road trips a breeze. You don’t have to stop to take pictures from your phone or camera. The Garmin 55, in Travelaspe mode, will do it for you. You can keep driving and still capture all the sights you pass.
It is also easy to condense the video down to only the images you want to share. This way you and others don’t have to suffer through countless pictures of a long, boring highway. You can even the video clips as you are traveling.
Garmin’s VIRB application is simple to download and use. It connects the dash cam to its built-in Wi-Fi capabilities. Trim, view, and share on your social media platforms while you are still driving.
Before you buy any product it is always a good idea to have a few questions answered. Here are a few common ones asked about Garmin 55.
Is it worth the price?
The Garmin 55 dashcam is priced a little higher than the previous 45 models. However, the price increase does reflect the increase in pixels and the addition of several features.
It does have a durable construction that is designed to last. It is also easy to install and use. When all of this is considered, this dash cam is worth its affordable price.
Are there better basic dash cam models?
Overall, reviews are favorable for this dashcam from Garmin. It has all of the features highlighted by competitor models, along with some that are exclusive to Garmin. Nighttime image quality could be improved, but this is standard in all basic models.
It is helpful to know what to look for in a dashcam, especially if this is your first time buying one.
Your budget should always be your first consideration. If you don’t know how much you can afford to spend, it is extremely difficult to start narrowing down your options. Start off with a ballpark figure of what you can afford to spend, then think about what features you want in a dash camera.
There is no point in mounting a dashboard camera if it can’t capture quality images. You want to look at the number of pixels. The higher the number the clearer the image. Garmin 55 has 1440p for crystal clear image capture.
It is also a good idea to see how well the camera performs at night. Some are not capable of producing clear nighttime images.
Ease of Use
One of the last things you want is a dash camera that is difficult to use. You focus should be on driving, not controlling the camera. Some models come with large buttons on the side. Others have interactive controls on the screen.
If you want a dash camera that is simple to use, even when driving, look for a model with voice controls. This way you can control the camera without taking your eyes off the road.
The build of a dash cam not only refers to its durability, but also its size. The size of a dash cam is important. Whether it’s mounted on the windshield or dashboard, you don’t want it to be so large that it blocks your view. This can be a safety hazard.
You also want to consider the dash cam’s construction. Durable and lightweight are the key things to look for. You do not want the dash camera to be too heavy to mount on your windshield. Look for models made from durable plastic. This also applies to the camera lens.
Lens for dash cams are generally plastic, but you do want to make sure that it is scratch resistant. Most are, but it never hurts to double-check. It will add to the durability of the dashboard camera.
Just because you are looking for a budget-friendly dash cam doesn’t mean that it can’t come with features. Some of the ones you might want to look for can improve safety while driving.
Lane assist, warnings, and alerts can all help prevent accidents. Sometimes it is easy to get distracted, and the best dashboard cameras can help prevent an accident if your attention drifts for just a second.
Other features can include the ability to take continuous video or snap a single image. The Garmin 55 also comes with an innovative feature, Travelaspe. This allows you to send images to friends, family and social media platforms as you are driving. It is a great way to share your trip, and only requires the addition of an app.
The Garmin 55 dash cam is worth its affordable price. It comes with a sturdy construction that is also lightweight. Mounting the camera to the windshield, dashboard or even rearview visor is a breeze. Everything you need to install and mount it is included with your purchase.
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Garmin 55 has all the features you need in a dashboard cam, including voice control. You also get Travelaspe, which is only available from Garmin. Overall, Garmin 55 is an excellent basic dash cam that gives you more than you expect.