NextBase 622GW dash cam review: 4K image quality and smart features make for one of the best dash cams on sale
NextBase has been at the forefront of the UK dash cam industry since the very start and even set up the National Dash Cam Portal to help police collate footage from drivers.
It is also among the biggest brands in the market, with cameras ranging from just over £50 all the way to the £270 622GW that we’re testing here.
Design and fitting
The NextBase 622GW certainly won’t win any design awards. It’s quite a large device and the lens sticks out some distance from the main body. This could cause problems fitting the camera as it means it needs more space to be properly mounted.
Thankfully, though, there are a couple of mount options, both of which allow plenty of adjustment. As well as the usual slimline mount with a sticky pad, the 622GW comes with a suction mount that makes it easy to remove or relocate if you switch between vehicles. The camera attaches to both mounts via a clever magnetic attachment with a swivel adjuster to get the camera lined up properly.
Our test unit also came with the optional rear camera which has an even cleverer magnetic mount that makes fitting and adjusting it incredibly easy and also means you can remove it very quickly if you need to.
NextBase also recently announced a limited edition colour option on the 622GW which has been launched to help charity. The Sienna edition is finished in a burnt orange colour rather than the regular grey and 5% of profits from every sale will go to the MS Society UK.
As mentioned above, the 622GW is sold as a standalone unit but can be expanded with an affordable rear-view or internal camera as well as a hard-wiring kit for permanent power even when the vehicle is parked. That expandability is great but unlike dedicated three-channel devices, the rear and interior modules connect to the same single socket on the main unit, meaning you can have one or the other but not both.
There’s an on-board three-inch touchscreen for viewing recordings and controlling settings, although both can also be done via a pretty comprehensive smartphone app.
Thankfully the 622GW doesn’t bother with unnecessary driver aids like lane departure warning but is the first dash cam to integrate the what3words location system, which can help identify where you are without knowing GPS coordinates, postcode or even road name or number. Handy if you’re involved in an incident somewhere unfamiliar. It also has an emergency call system which can detect a particularly heavy impact and prompt a call to your designated phone to check if you’re okay.
Amazon Alexa also appears on the camera, allowing voice control of the camera and your phone, although I struggle to see the point of this function.
Image quality from the 622GW’s 4K sensor and f1.3 lens is excellent. Footage is crisp and well defined in virtually any conditions thanks to a combination of the high-quality components and smart processing software. There is even an extreme weather mode to cope with really bad conditions. A built-in polarising filter means the 662GW handles bright weather and high-contrast situations better than many devices and on-board image stabilisation helps keep the footage smooth even when the road isn’t.
Night time images suffer as with any dash cam but the 622GW’s enhanced night mode helps get the very best out of low-light conditions and is among the best we’ve tested.
Standard recording is at 30fps but you can drop to 1080p resolution which brings the choice of 60fps or even 120fps for super slow motion recording.
The rear camera is less impressive, stuck with 1080p and 30fps. The image is noticeably darker and not as sharp as that from the main unit but is still perfectly good enough to rely upon should you need it, likewise the smaller interior unit - particularly useful for taxi and minicab drivers.
At £269.99 the NextBase 622GW is at the more expensive end of the dash cam price range but still feels like good value. Unlike some models, most of its features are practical and user friendly and many are dedicated to helping capture the impeccable 4K footage that is at the heart of its appeal.
- Superb image quality
- Useful location and emergency features
- Awkward design
- Only two-channel recording
- Rear camera image could be better
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