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Magellan MiVue 240 DashCam

Dashboard cameras are becoming the norm, capturing the antics of bad cab fares, pretty sunsets and YouTube-worthy car karaoke. But most important is the opportunity to capture video of your actions and of those around you.

We tested the Magellan MiVue 240, an in-the-middle-value dash cam that offers a lot for the price. First, it's easy to install: Turn it on, get accustomed to the buttons and set the date and time; stick the swivel mount behind the rearview mirror, tuck the power cable along the windshield and start the wide-angle video. When the car is running, so is the HD camera, creating files that are one minute in length. If there is a crash, a special "Event File" is created. It will also "wake up" to record impacts if it detects anything while the car is parked (until the battery runs out).

Replaying the videos is easy on the camera or by using your computer once the free download program is installed. Upgrade to one of the better MiVue models (more money, of course) and you'll also get GPS, G-sensors and better audio and video. The sound on this particular model is not good, so don't bother singing.

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