How Many Hours Can A Dashcam Record Footage? What Factors Does It Depend On?
Written by Nick
Updated On 
Apr 20, 2021 @ 10:23 am

How Much Footage Can a Dashcam Record?

When you buy a dashcam one of the first questions you have is most likely how many hours of footage can your micro SD card in your dash cam record. 

The video storage that your particular dash cam can hold all comes down to the size of the micro SD that's within it, the quality footage your cam is recording in and how many frames per second it is, for example, a 16GB durable SD card can hold two hours worth of footage when took at 1080p at 30 fps.

To figure out how much footage your card for your dash cam can hold before the card loops and the card size you should choose, we have put a short guide below that will give you the rundown of all you need to know.

What Factors Affect How Many Hours Of Footage My Dashcam Can Hold?

The micro SD card of your dash cam will get fuller quicker depending on a variety of factors such as the frame rate and resolution of the video. 

  • Frame rate (FPS) - The higher the frame rate you record your dash cam footage in, the more storage it will take up, that's why most dashcams tend to record in a 30FPS standard which allows you to see everything you need. 
  • Video quality - A higher video quality resolution will take up more storage, for example, video files recorded in 1080p will exceed the size of videos shot in 720p, so you should always make sure to change your video quality settings accordingly. 
  • Size of the SD card - Most of the time an average SD card can hold 2-6 hours of the video unless you get larger card sizes of over 64GB.

Which Card Size Should I Get For My Dashcam?

Many different factors affect the micro cards you should choose for your quality dash cam, we will list the average hours of video a standard SD can hold in your cam below however so as you can get an idea of what size you will need to support your dash cam footage. 

All cards would be filmed at 1080p resolution and 30fps.

  • 16GB SD Card - A 16GB card will be able to hold 2 hours worth of footage.
  • 32GB SD Card - 4 hours worth of footage.
  • 64GB SD Card - 6 hours worth of footage. 
  • 128GB SD Card - 8 hours of memory card recording.

As you can see, the bigger the capacity cards storage is, you can add up around two hours average more of storage. This is all took on average, however, some faster SD cards might differ.

Can Dashcams Run Out Of Storage?

A dashcam will never run out of storage no matter what size SD card you get as they loop over their footage anyway to allow them to record continuously. 

What matters however is how much footage the card for dash cam can hold before this rewrite happens, allowing you to capture more video.

Tips For Selecting The Best SD Card For Your Dash Cam

Now you might have an idea of what size SD card you should buy for your dash cam we will list a couple of other important features to look out for in your SD card below which are equally as important for your dash cam footage.

  • The brand - Even though popular cards don't mean card longevity, they can help you buy a decent quality card, some names to mention are Sandisk or Samsung.
  • Card type - Make sure you choose a micro SD card rather than a full-sized model.
  • Format card options - Format your card right and use FAT32 for SDHC of exFAT for SDXC, make sure your card usage is only for these format files, don't mix, otherwise you could corrupt the whole card.
  • Speed - As the resolution and bit rate of videos grow, this means we need fast SD cards that can handle this. Look for an SD card speed of at least class 10 or 10MB/S for 1080p video.
  • 4K video - A one minute 4K video at 30FPS could take up to half a GB, so make sure you get a special larger SD card to compensate for this.

Frequently Asked Questions About SD Cards For Dash Cams & Storage

What is quad HD footage? 

Quad HD footage means a resolution that is four times standard HD.

Which video resolution should my footage be? 

Your video footage should be at least 1080P if you want to be able to see things clearly and see detailed information such as number plates.

Are there fake SD cards on the market?

Yes, you should be careful to avoid putting fake SD cards in your quality dashcam as they can cause damage to video files and the camera itself if you are not careful.

Final Words 

Overall, dashcams can hold on average two hours of footage at 16GB, with the addition of two more every time you go up a size in capacity. Always make sure you get a large-sized SD card if you want to hold more footage before it loops and consider factors such as video resolution when picking your card.

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About the author
My name is Nick and I am a self-diagnosed tech-geek! I am the owner of DashCamExperts.UK where we review various dash cams. Having owned a dash cam store where we sold and installed them, starting a website around the subject seemed to be a no-brainer, so here we are! Hope you guys enjoy my reviews!
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