Nextbase makes some of the best dash cams on the market today, and the two features here are currently the company’s two best models. They both offer resolution beyond Full HD, frame rates of at least 60fps, wide lenses, Wi-Fi and a three-inch HD touchscreen.
But which should you buy? The devil is in the detail here, especially when it comes to resolution and frame rate, while a current price drop for the 522GW means it is over £100 cheaper than the 622GW. But should you still go with the flagship, even though it costs twice the price? Read on to find out.
Nextbase 622GW vs 522GW: Design and Hardware
Aesthetically, these two cameras are almost identical. They both have a simple., rectangular body with a touchscreen on the rear and a protruding camera lens on the front. These are larger than dash cams from Garmin, but are still compact enough to mostly fit behind your car’s rear-view mirror when fitted to the windscreen.
Both cameras use Nextbase’s smart mounting system. They come with a suction mount and more permanent 3M tape-backed mount in the box, each attaching magnetically to the front of the camera. The power cable connects to the mount and not the dash cam, so removing the dash cam from the mount and its power source is simply a case of pulling it away from the magnetic connection. It’s a great way to quickly remove the camera, perhaps if you want to switch it between two vehicles.
The mount also features a ball-and-socket joint that makes it easy to adjust the angle of the camera, but keeps it held securely.
Both dash cams have a power button on the side and a 3.0-inch, HD IPS touchscreen display on the rear for viewing footage, checking the view of the camera, and navigating the menu system to set everything up. Both save their footage to a microSD card slot, with the 622GW requiring a U3 card with at least 32GB of storage.
Nextbase 622GW vs 522GW: Camera and Features
Despite their near-identical looks, the video performance of these two dash cams is what sets them apart. The 522GW can shoot 1080p Full HD video at 60 frames per second, or higher-resolution 1440p at 30fps, which means you can pick between higher resolution and a higher, smoother framerate.
On the other hands, the 622GW can record 1080p Full HD at 120 frames per second, 1440p at 60fps, and 4K at 30fps. Given these options, it is hard to ignore the 1080p at 120fps option, given the faster frame rate should mean even smoother video, and footage that retains its detail when paused – crucial when trying to spot details like the registration plates of vehicles involved in a collision.
Similarly, while 30fps isn’t ideal when hoping to pause video, the 4K option means your recordings will be packed with detail and pin-sharp. The middling option takes the higher resolution option of the 522GW but doubles the frame rate; this is probably the sweet spot of both of these dash cams.
Both cameras have a 140-degree field-of-view and record through a six-layer, f/1.3 aperture lens.
As for additional features, both have Alexa. The Amazon voice assistant can be used to record incidents using a voice command – useful if you need to record something that has happened ahead, but didn’t trigger the camera’s collision sensor. Alexa also works in the usual way, so you can ask it for directions, or to play music and to make a call.
Both of these dash cams also have a feature called Emergency SOS, which alerts the emergency services and shares your location if a collision is detected and the driver is unresponsive. To determine this, the system first calls your phone; if you don’t respond, your GPS position will be shared with local emergency services. The system can even be loaded up with your medical history, next of kin and blood type – all key information for first responders.
Recorded video can be viewed on the screen of the camera itself, on your smartphone via the Bluetooth and WiFi connections, or by slotting the microSD card into your computer.
Nextbase 622GW vs 522GW: Price
It would be easy to say the Nextbase 622GW is the best option here, and indeed it is the company’s current flagship. But price will likely take priority when it comes to picking which is best.
The retail prices for the 522GW and 622GW are £149 and £249 respectively, meaning the extra resolution and frame rate of the latter commands a £100 premium. We think this is fair enough, but Nextbase currently has the 522GW discounted to £119, putting the premium up to £130. In our eyes, that is a lot for a resolution bump, especially when 1080p Full HD at 60fps is still very good.
That model represents the better value for money here, but if budget isn’t a concern for you then you arguably can’t put a price on the extra resolution of framerate of the 622GW – it could make the difference when it comes to submitting evidence to potentially clear your name.