The BlackVue brand emerged onto the North American dash cam market with their compact Full HD dash cams offering a clean cylindrical design, good video quality, and parking mode protection. Over the years they haven’t changed that base recipe too much and have built upon it by adding features like WiFi and even Cloud connectivity. The new BlackVue DR450-1CH is a back-to-basics dash cam for BlackVue offering a decent entry level solution for first-time or fleet customers.
On the outside, the DR450-1CH is one of the simplest dash cams on the market. There’s no LCD screen and no buttons at all. The design is attractive and it offers a fairly fingerprint-resistant textured matte black body. The small size means that it can easily blend in with your vehicle’s interior and would not stick out like a sore thumb. Thanks to the 360° rotatable adhesive mount design, this will mount perfectly fine on anything from a sports car with a raked back windshield or on a semi-truck with a very upright windshield.
The minimalist design means that there’s no buttons on this device, this is a good and bad thing in our opinion. For our fleet customers, this is great as it prevents employees from tampering with the device, especially when paired with the lockable memory card flap as this will prevent wiping or switching out the card. For our customers putting this into their personal vehicles however, we feel that this may be a hassle as you can no longer format the card directly inside the unit. This is part of the recommended maintenance for the dash cam and by eliminating the buttons on the device it makes this a lot more difficult.
Video quality-wise, we think the DR450-1CH fairs well against other parking mode dash cams in this price range. While it doesn’t have a Sony CMOS sensor like the higher end BlackVue devices, it does a decent enough job at night and can pick up license plates as long as the other vehicle is not too far away or moving too quickly. The parking mode feature works just like other BlackVue units and offers pre-buffered recording, meaning it will write the 5 seconds before any motion or impact is detected in a parking recording file. We’ve seen our fair share of incidents caught on BlackVue parking mode dash cams and know that it’s a proven system when paired with a dedicated battery pack or hardwire kit.
Overall, we think that the tweaks made to BlackVue’s entry level dash cam has made it more appealing for fleet and business customers, but with slight compromises as well. Given the price point, design, and proven effectiveness of these 1 Channel cameras, we think it’ll be a great contender for anyone looking for a very simple dash cam solution. It’s a no frills experience and is one of the least noticeable and least distracting cameras on the market.