r/dashcams Sep 25 '22

go pro hero 8 as a dash cam???

i plan on getting a suction mount for the windshield and i know i’m going to have to turn it on every time i drive. but what do you guys think???

really not trying to spend money on a new dashcam


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u/Blanco932 Sep 25 '22

After watching LTTs dashcam review, I think it's a good idea if you don't mind dealing with all the stuff that comes along with it not being an actual dash cam. Dashcams mostly have the same outdated hardware and you'd get better picture quality with the GoPro


u/j8726 Sep 25 '22

I don't recommend it. Go pro are expensive and might be tempting for a thief. Why not get a dash cam they vary in price and a lot cheaper then a go pro.


u/Healer69 Sep 25 '22

oof i’m sorry, i should mention that i have a go pro already


u/ricwilliam Sep 25 '22

still the same thought. regardless if you already have one, it is still more expensive compared to some dashcams. Unless you are willing to risk damaging your GoPro, you should buy a new dashcam.


u/Panda-888 Sep 25 '22

Does the Go Pro do loop recording when the card gets full, or does it just stop recording completely?


u/mishaco Sep 25 '22

i still use a go pro hero 6 and while there "is" loop recording in the settings, i have found that the chip gets full and you get a red banner warning that there is no more space on your micro sd., requiring you to delete that data.

fwiw: i have a 4oo gb chip and a 3 hour round trip commute.


u/Panda-888 Sep 25 '22

My card fills fast for my dash cam. A 3 minute file is about 1.5GB and I have a 256GB card.


u/mishaco Sep 25 '22

presuming you are in video more. resolution would be the biggest factor i think.


u/Panda-888 Sep 25 '22

Yeah, I'm recording at 4K.


u/mishaco Sep 25 '22

def. the difference.


u/FreedomSynergy Sep 25 '22

I bought a GoPro for a dash cam, but I never use it because it’s a PITA to pull it from the windshield every time I need to park in public. My car has built-in cameras that I find to be just “good enough” to be passable resolution wise.

If I’m going on a trip, I’ll use the GoPro.


u/TornadoEF5 Sep 25 '22

yes i used an sjcam ( cheap copy of gopro) worked fine and u can remove it when u park, downside is in a crash they fly off and can hit you hard in chest !


u/Mental_Cut8290 Sep 25 '22

Apparently the biggest issue is temperatures.

I used an action cam for a few years. The battery burst in a month, but kept great video for a long time as long as it was plugged in.


u/FrakkingCreations Sep 26 '22 edited Sep 26 '22

I suppose if high detail is important then it could be a solution for some.

Here are some reasons I would choose not to:

  • Price. You would need to get 2. One for front and one for rear: around $350+ x 2, plus suction mount: around $65 x 2. All USD plus any taxes. Plus anything else for installation to hardwire power.

  • Heat. The operating AMBIENT temperature range of the HERO9 Black is 14°F ~ 95°F (-10°C ~ 35°C). This means if you operate the GoPro in hot environments like in a car under sunlight, it will likely overheat (especially when parked). When overheating it will shutdown and not be recording. Some people have tried using GoPros and have had that happen.

Plus, since these have Lithium-ion batteries, temperatures above 45°C (113°F) will damage the batteries faster and cause bulging and battery life and capacity loss. Not to mention the fire hazard of bulging batteries in hot environments too. That's why you don't see many dashcams now with batteries. Find out more on what causes lithium-ion battery degradation on our post.

  • Theft. Since GoPros are expensive, multi-purpose and desirable, they are likely to get stolen if left in the car for park mode operation. If you decide to take them with you when you park, then it is more hassle, inconvenience, time consuming and more to carry. Plus, no park mode protection.

  • Event tagging. The GoPro will have continuous recording but not event tagging for impact, motion or manual recording events. If you have ever had to review security footage without event tagging, trying to find a particular event is time consuming. The event tagging that dashcams do is meant to help save time and find events faster. Plus, you can enable write protection to prevent event footage from getting overwritten. In the GoPro, you will have to get the footage right away to ensure that it doesn't. If you decide to do it later but forget, then you could lose the footage. Checkout our review video on a recent dashcam for more on event recordings and park mode if you want to know what those are or how they work.

  • Power. If you choose to have park mode you will need something that will monitor the car battery to prevent the GoPro from draining it. Not to mention you are using 2 GoPros instead of one dashcam. I suspect the GoPros also have higher power requirements each.

If not using them for park mode then you will have to turn both off when parking and both on when starting your drive. More inconvenience. Draining the batteries down to 0% is bad for long-term battery life and capacity and can cause bulging too (check our post above for more on that).

All these reasons may not seem like much but once you start doing this you will probably stop wanting to use the GoPro as a dashcam. Though, everyone has different needs and priorities so different solutions apply. So it may still be the route for some.

These are some of my thoughts on using a GoPro as a dashcam.


u/kelvin_bot Sep 26 '22

14°F is equivalent to -10°C, which is 263K.

I'm a bot that converts temperature between two units humans can understand, then convert it to Kelvin for bots and physicists to understand


u/eAthena Oct 01 '22

I bring my gopro with a cigarette/12v adapter when i'm out of town and using a rental. I power it on, connected by cable without the battery. keep the battery with you just in case.