Secondary camera can be used for interior or rear window captures
Easy to install and use
Could use a longer-running capacitor
GPS is a $20 external add-on
This versatile dual-channel dash cam from Aukey takes front, and either interior or rear video, depending on where you mount the secondary camera. Captures are top-notch, even at night (with infrared lighting integrated ).
The most distinguishing feature of the Aukey DRS2 ($150 on Amazon) is its interior camera, which can be detached from the main body for use as a rear camera. Nice, but its best trick is taking excellent video, both exterior and interior, day and night. It could use integrated GPS (an $20 external option that’s $20 on AmazonRemove non-product link) and a larger capacitor, but beyond that, it’s all good.
This review is part of our ongoing roundup of the best dash cams. Go there for information on competing products and how we test them.
Design and features
Aukey opts for a vertically oriented design, which, unlike the more common horizontal designs, leaves room for four easy-access buttons beneath the display—an arrangement I’ve always found the easiest to use. In this case, said display is a sharp 960×240, 2-inch color model.
The front 1080p, 170-degree field-of-view (FOV) camera, and the interior/rear 1080p, 152-degree FOV camera, rotate only vertically. This makes it especially important for you to level everything with the horizon during installation, using the semi-permanent sticky mounts.
Important point: Though there are what appear to be two mini-USB ports on the main body, they are subtly different. One is for power, the other is for the rear/interior camera. Don’t try to hammer the rear camera or extension USB cable into the power connector. It won’t fit, and you could mangle the port.
Beyond that, there are only the SD card slot and the GPS module input. Aukey didn’t provide its optional GM-32 GPS module, but if you added it (it’s $20 on AmazonRemove non-product link) that would make the DRS2 a $170 system, comparable in price and features to similar products with GPS.
The DRS2 is simple and easy to navigate. The display shows the current function of the buttons below it. There’s only one unusual function you should know about, and that’s to change the rear camera capture mode from grayscale (for interior night use with the infrared) to color (for exterior use).
The DRS2 is warrantied for a full two years—an unusually lengthy promise in the dash cam field, and rated to operate from minus 13 degrees to plus 149 degrees Fahrenheit. The sensors in both cameras are Sony EXMOR IMX323’s.
The DRS2 takes excellent 1080p video, both day and night. In fact, I liked its night video better than the Vantrue X4’s 2160p night video. The color saturation is good, details are easily discernible, and it demands a lot less storage than 2160p video.
You can see from the front capture above and the interior capture below, the DRS2 takes excellent video. The video from the interior camera mounted on the rear window is similar in quality, and you can switch it to color if you wish (as seen below).
I left the secondary camera set to grayscale for the most part when used for interior captures.
Though the sky in the night capture below appears to be around twilight, it’s actually nighttime, albeit in a city with clouds reflecting numerous light sources. Regardless, the DRS2 does very well capturing detail, though headlight flare is a bit more pronounced than it is with some cameras.
Interior night video shows a lot of detail, thanks to the infrared lights on either side of the lens. Ignore the mirror—placing the dash cam lower on the windshield will avoid such blockage.
I have zero qualms about the DRS2’s captures, exterior or interior. You’ll even get decent coverage of events through your rear window with the secondary camera mounted inside.
The only thing that fell short was the approximately three-second run time from the capacitor that powers the unit when 12-volt power is interrupted. That’s not enough to capture all post-incident events should your car’s power system be disabled. It’s enough to save the files captured beforehand, but there’s always a slight possibility that you’ll miss something.
Should you buy the Aukey DRS2?
I wish that the DRS2 integrated GPS and that the supercapacitor lasted a few seconds longer, but most drivers will be fine with external GPS and the capacitor is a 1% of the time need. All in all, a versatile dual-channel camera system that takes excellent video under nearly all circumstances.
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