Apeman C660 Review: Best Dash Cam under $50? 
>> Apeman Night Vision Dash Cam Review
In this Apeman C660 dash cam review, we’ll review the Apeman C660 dash cam (Amazon) and see if it’s the best dash cam under $50 in 2020. This new dash cam is a night vision dash cam with infrared lights.
Dashboard cameras, or dash cams, have become increasingly popular and more affordable. These small cameras for your car are mounted to the windshield, constantly recording the environment around you.
Are dash cams worth it?
A dash cam can be incredibly useful in the event of a car accident. After an accident, the video can be used by you and your insurance agency as evidence. Thus, a dash cam can go a long way towards protecting your insurance rates and overall financial future.
That can make dash cams a very good investment.
How does a dashcam work?
After mounting a dashcam to your windshield, usually with a suction cup, the camera is powered by a car’s cigarette lighter outlet or USB outlet.
When powered, the dash camera then continuously records video footage to a memory card. Dash cams typically use a wide angle lens to capture a large field of view in front of a vehicle.
Apeman C660 Dash Cam Review: New Tech Under $50
As dash cams have become more popular, so has the Apeman dash cam brand. Apeman offers some of the best dash cams on Amazon, and is widely considered one of the best Amazon dash cam brands.
Released in 2020, the Apeman C660 is the direct upgrade the C550. Apeman’s new dash cam is equipped with Sony’s Starvis sensor and eight infrared (IR) lights for enhanced low light visibility.
Apeman covers the dash cam with a 30-day return policy and a one year limited warranty.
Best Night Vision Dash Cam?
The new Apeman C660 records high definition video in 1080P and features the Sony IMX307 Starvis Sensor. Sony’s sensor assists in high definition video processing and improves the overall quality of low light video.
This dash cam also uses eight infrared lights, embedded around the lens. Combined with the Sony sensor, these IR light deliver a noticeable improvement in the video quality at night.
That makes this a good dash cam for driving at night, and why the C660 is considered one of the best night vision dash cams for the money. We’ll cover low light performance and video quality below.
What’s in the Box:
- Apeman C660 Dashcam
- Car charger (11.5 ft)
- Mini USB cable
- Car pry tool
- Windshield mount with locking suction cup
- Metal tool for reset button
Apeman C660 Dash Cam
This new Apeman dash cam features eight infrared lights and a Sony Starvis IMX 307 high resolution sensor with wide dynamic range (WDR) technology and a 170°wide angle field of view. The new 3’’ IPS Screen interface adds directional icons to make the menu settings straightforward, intuitive and easy to use, even for first time dash cam buyers.
Watch our Apeman C660 Dash Cam review:
For a dash cam under 50 bucks, I honestly wasn’t expecting a lot from the Apeman C660. Although this affordable dash cam has a low price point and is made of plastic, it feels well constructed and proved easy to use.
During the unboxing, Apeman has done a good job with their packaging. They’ve clearly taken lessons from iconic brands like GoPro and Apple.
The box is well designed, featuring a well-organized interior with a “Hello!” insert, accessories box, instructional manual, and the camera itself.
Dash Cam Accessories
They did a good job of including most of the essentials. I especially appreciate the included car charger cable, which is over 11 feet long.
If you hate dangling cords, this should be long enough to neatly run the cord around most cars windshields with the included plastic car pry tool.
The car charger even includes a USB port on top, making it easy to also charge your phone, tablet, or other electronic device. A nice feature.
Prefer not to charge using a cigarette lighter? You can also charge your dash cam with a microUSB cord. Something like this cable should work well as a dash cam USB charging cable.
Choosing a Dash Cam Memory Card
The only essential accessory that’s not included is a memory card, which is required for recording the dash cam video.
Apeman recommends a 32GB Class 10 microSDHC, so I ordered this affordable SanDisk microSDHC from Amazon to pair with the dash cam.
This 32GB card should hold approximately 5.5 hours of video footage while recording full HD (1080p).
How to Upload Dash Cam Footage to Your Computer
To upload your dash cam footage to a computer, you’ll also need a microSD card reader. Most card readers connect to the standard USB port on your computer, making the upload process easy.
I like this dash cam memory card reader because it will read both standard SD and microSD cards. Once the memory card is connected, you can view and move the video files onto your computer hard drive.
How to Set Up the Apeman Dash Cam
Getting this Apeman dash cam was easy. The dash cam setup went like this:
- Gently pull off the protective plastic film on the lens.
- Insert your memory card into the side of the dash cam until it clicks into place (side gold contacts towards the screen).
- Attach the suction cup to the top camera notch.
- Mount the camera by placing the suction cup on your car windshield (clean your windshield first for best results).
- Connect the charging cable to the top of the camera and plug into a cigarette lighter.
Tip: To remove the memory card, press down on the card slightly. It will spring out of the slot, allowing you to remove it.
After set up, using the dash cam is simple. With the charging cable connected and memory card inserted, the camera will power up and start recording automatically when the car is started.
How to Format Memory Card for Dash Cam
You’ll need to format the memory card before use, but it’s a simple process. Here’s how to format the dashcam memory card:
- Turn the camera on and insert a memory card.
- Press the menu button on the side of the camera.
- In the menu, select “Setup”.
- Under Setup menu, select “System Settings”.
- In the System Settings menu, select “Format”.
That’s it! Apeman recommends reformatting the memory card twice a month, or every 15 days.
I also recommend turning off the “Beep Sound” in the Systems Settings menu. The sound is annoying while you’re navigating the menu.
Dash Cam Recording Settings
During initial setup, you can also set your recording settings in the menu. The recommended settings are already set out of the box, so this isn’t something you’ll need to mess with.
If you do make any changes, these are Apeman’s recommended settings for best results:
- Set to “Loop Recording”
- Under recording time, set to 3 minutes
- Set G-sensor (or Gravity Sensor) sensitivity to “Low”
Dash Cam Video Quality
This dash cam shoots in full HD, 1080P resolution, out of the box. In the menu, you can optionally change the settings to shoot in 720P resolution, so footage takes up less memory card space.
For most, 1080P is a good dash cam resolution. The image looks clear through the wide angle lens. While more expensive dash cams will shoot in a higher 4k resolution, I think that’s overkill for this usage.
High Definition Video Sensor
The highlight of the C660 is the Sony IMX307 Starvis Sensor. According to Sony’s website, the Starvis is a back-illuminated CMOS image sensor designed for enhanced video processing and low light performance.
Tip: To keep your video sharp, keep microfiber cloths on hand in your car to clear the lens of fingerprints and smudges. I recommend the MagicFiber cloth for use on electronics and lenses. See our full review of this cleaning cloth here.
Dash Cam Night Vision
The combination of Sony’s Starvis sensor and the infrared lights make this one of the best dash cams for driving at night. Simply, the low light quality is impressive for the price, making this a good night vision dash cam.
In the menu, you can turn the infrared lights on or off. You can even set specific times for the lights to turn on, allowing them to only be activated during night driving hours.
Are dash cams with infrared lights worth it?
As part of this Apeman dash cam review, I tested driving at night with the infrared lights both on and off. There was a small, but noticeable, improvement in low light visibility with the IR lights turned on.
As you can see in the side-by-side comparison image below, the IR lights brighten and boost some of the shadows in the darkest areas of the video. The infrared lights also appear to give the video a slight green hue, like you’re looking through a pair of night vision goggles.
While the infrared lights don’t make this a perfect night vision dash cam, they do appear to improve the video image quality during night time driving.
Overall construction on this dash cam feels good. The unit is small and light with most of the weight in the protruding wide angle lens and IR sensors. The on-camera software is simple, and the menu layout is easy to navigate.
I don’t like the feel of the buttons. These feel plastic-y and don’t give very good tactile feedback. But that’s a minor grievance.
Poor Battery Life: Not a Dealbreaker
Another weakness is the internal battery, which is very small. Don’t expect this dash cam to work while it’s not plugged in.
Apeman says the battery is only designed as backup, but the unit only stays powered on for a few seconds without a constant charge. However, it’s not really a big deal since you’ll always have this plugged in.
Verdict: Is the Apeman dash cam worth it?
I’ll make this simple. Yes, the Apeman dash cam is worth it for the money.
For the price, the Apeman C660 is worth the money and is one of the best dash cams I’ve used, especially for driving at night. I hope to see more collaboration with Apeman and Sony in the future, as the Sony sensor definitely seems to help with low light image quality.
When you consider how much money a dash cam could potentially save you after an accident, it’s a no brainer. The Apeman C660 is one of the best new dash cams for all drivers.
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