The Xiaomi 70mai Dash Cam Pro has some great specs that made me feel like it could be the one that could snatch the crown of our best dash cam that we’ve had the pleasure of using. With 2592x1944P resolution, our favourite Sony Exmor IMX335 sensor, 2-inch LCD display, Wi-Fi smartphone connection, all in a compact and super slick looking case and a wallet-friendly price tag, there wasn’t much not to like with this dashcam. So let’s find out if the 70mai Dash Cam Pro delivers.
We reviewed its younger brother, the Xiaomi 70mai Dash Cam, back in January 2019, however in this review we are dealing with its Pro model. So what makes this pro? I hear you say. Well, there is a lot different between these too Dash Cams. The first being it’s form factor. Because the pro model packs a 2-inch LCD display, the casing has to be designed quite differently.
All the screen and it’s brains come in a packed case the size of around 53mm x 83.5mm. The camera simply slides onto
In the box, you will find the usual dash cam accessories. There are a pair of anti-static film that allows the camera mount is stuck onto. I like this method that Xiaomi adopts with their cameras. When you’re reviewing many cameras in the car it can be a pain to remove them. The film takes a good amount of pressure to remove but compared to direct adhesive pad it’s much easier to remove, should you wish to do so in the future.
A nice long micro USB to USB A cable gives enough length to feed the cable from the camera, around your inner window interior, and plug the cable into a USB power port on your center console. A simple
The first surprise when turning on the 70mai Pro is how fast it boots up. This is likely due to its larger internal battery and that it is watching out for any motion sensor activity. However compared to our similar crowning Aukey DR02 dash cam, with similar functionality, this 70mai Pro booted up almost instantaneously and it was recording for 12 seconds before the Aukey was recording.
Setting up the camera was a breeze thanks to its simple on-screen menu system and navigating with its four physical function buttons. Firing up the unit’s Wi-Fi capability you can connect your smartphone to the dash cam and access these settings on the 70mai app on your phone as well as download and save recordings directly to your phone – without the need to connect to a desktop computer.
On playback of the recordings, I was certainly impressed. The resolution is more 4:3 format than 16:9 that I’ve come accustomed to. The picture colour and contrast was pleasing to the eye, and wasn’t over saturated and its F1.8 aperture lens, 5 megapixel Sony IMX335 image sensor gave a sharp and correctly lit video captures, that made our crowning Aukey DR02 dull and underexposed in comparison. With its 140-degree wide angle FOV, I felt it captured just as much as the 170-degree FOV of the Aukey DR02. If anything, the 70mai Pro captured more in height than the Aukey, which was a pleasant surprise.
During night time driving, the 70mai Pro does just as well as any, with its F1.8 aperture lens. Lights do not wash out the recording and dark areas carry a decent level of detail in them. The 70mai Pro is very capable dash cam in this area and I have yet to see a dash camera dominate in night time driving recording.
The 70mai Pro has both Emergency video and Parking Surveillance modes. The first is a common feature found in most dash cams, where you can store a recording that stays on the SD card memory and it will not be deleted from the looped recording. This is so you can store key events that you might need to return to, such as an accident or a recording you wish to keep hold of.
The Parking Surveillance mode is a handy feature that with the correct sensor sensitivity level set, the camera can be jolted into booting up and recording the next few minutes of activity. If you park with your nose facing outwards, there is a chance you will be able to capture any collisions with your parked car.
Capturing audio is possible thanks to the small microphone located on the side of the camera housing. Audio recording on the 70mai is pretty decent. It records general conversion in the vehicle very clearly and any jolts in the car from bumps or potholes in the road do not distort the audio as it does on cheaper dash cams. As a whole, its audio is nice and deep sounding rather than tinny and shallow. It is probably the best audio capture I’ve heard on a dash cam.
An optional External GPS Antenna can be plugged in to provide accurate position and speed data to the dashcam, which is saved and displayed on recorded videos. This additional GPS information may support your case in any driving disputes or incidents. It is also used for Advanced Driver Assistance (ADA), which will warn you if your vehicle veers off a lane or thinks you’re about to hit a vehicle ahead. It’s a shame though that this feature comes is an optional extra and is not a bundled item.
The Xiaomi 70mai Dash Cam Pro is a fantastic dash camera that has indeed taken our crown for the best dash camera reviewed on CarPlay Life. It sits relatively small on your windshield and includes a whole host of tech that will capture some very clear and detailed video in all conditions and times of day. What’s compelling, though, is its price. For $53.79 (15% off) from Banggood.com it is an absolute steal at this price, especially on how it performs over dash cameras that cost twice as much as this. Its low cost of entry makes it a no brainer upgrade if you’re looking to replace a low-end dash camera. It is also a very competent dashboard camera for anyone looking to jump straight in and attach your first camera to your windshield. For its relatively low price, you can’t do much wrong by placing one of these onto your screen.
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