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Garmin 57 Review

A dash cam with useful features like GPS location, but poor video quality
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Garmin 57 Review
Credit: Garmin
Price:  $230 List
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Manufacturer:   Garmin
By Hayley Thomas and Matt Spencer  ⋅  Sep 20, 2022
72
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#4 of 11
  • Video Quality - 40% 6.6
  • Video Capture - 25% 8.4
  • Interface - 25% 6.4
  • Visual Footprint - 10% 9.0
RELATED: Best Dash Cam

Our Verdict

The Garmin 57 offers many useful features like event detection and GPS, which allows for lane departure and collision ahead warnings. It also responds to voice commands which is much safer than fiddling with buttons while driving. It offers recordings in three one-minute clips, ensuring the moment before, during, and after detection is recorded. While all these features may sound enticing, the 57 struggles with video quality, especially at night, rendering details like license plates very difficult to see. If this dash cam was a little less expensive, it might be worthwhile, but the lack of quality video puts quite the damper on its performance.
REASONS TO BUY
Lane departure warning
Collision ahead warning
'OK Garmin' voice commands
GPS location
REASONS TO AVOID
Subpar video quality
Grainy night vision
Subpar adhesive mount

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Bottom Line This dash cam does not offer great video quality, but it does come chock-full of useful featuresA great camera for rideshare drivers that need in-cabin footage, but probably overkill for most other peopleRegardless of the time, this dash cam captures clear and crisp videosWith its continuous recording and saving, this dash cam is sure to capture everything, and in 4K tooA small budget-friendly dash cam with the performance to match
Rating Categories Garmin 57 Vantrue N2 Pro Uber... Miofive 4K Rove R2-4K Vantrue N1 Pro
Video Quality (40%)
6.6
8.7
7.9
7.9
5.4
Video Capture (25%)
8.4
7.5
7.7
7.7
7.3
Interface (25%)
6.4
6.1
6.0
3.2
5.4
Visual Footprint (10%)
9.0
8.0
6.0
6.0
6.0
Specs Garmin 57 Vantrue N2 Pro Uber... Miofive 4K Rove R2-4K Vantrue N1 Pro
Forward Camera Field of View 180º 170º 140º 150º 160º
Forward Camera Resolution 1440p 1440p 2160p 2160p 1080p
Screen Size 2" 1.5" 2.2" 2.4" 1.5"
Event Detection G Sensor Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Cabin Camera No Yes No No No
Camera Dimensions L x W x H 2-1/2" x 1-5/8" x 1-3/8" 3-4/5" x 1-1/2" x 1-1/2" 4-1/2" x 1-5/8" x 1-3/16" 1-1/5" x 2-4/5 x 2-1/2" 2-1/2" x 2" x 1-3/8"
Built-in Wi-Fi? Yes No Yes Yes No

Our Analysis and Test Results

This dash cam is 2 1/2 by 1 5/8 by 1 3/8 inches with a 180-degree field of view, event detection, and built-in WiFi. It sets itself apart from the rest with a plethora of features but falls short in a few metrics too.

Performance Comparison


garmin 57 - the medium-sized garmin 57 dash cam is feature-rich.
The medium-sized Garmin 57 dash cam is feature-rich.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Video Quality


The Garmin 57 offers a 180-degree field of view and 1440 pixel resolution. These specs sound great on paper, but our subjective experience inspires little to write home about. The field of view somehow feels narrower than 180 degrees, and the image is far from crisp. Reading license plates during the day is tough but doable and significantly worse at night. The already subpar imagery becomes even more grainy in the absence of light, leaving license plates virtually unreadable. The only saving grace in this metric is the bright and vibrant colors.

garmin 57 - the garmin 57 video quality is somewhat passable by day but...
The Garmin 57 video quality is somewhat passable by day but struggles at night.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Video Capture


The Garmin 57 offers auto-on and Event Detection G Sensor. With the default settings, the sensor is triggered through a hard brake. When the sensor goes off, the save button is pressed, or a voice command is initiated, the device will save three one-minute clips: one minute before, during, and after. The built-in WiFi makes updating the software and connecting to the Garmin Drive App easy. There is no interior camera, but the exterior view is very reliable as far as video capture goes.

garmin 57 - the g-sensor ensures that you won't be distracted mid-event fiddling...
The g-sensor ensures that you won't be distracted mid-event fiddling with your camera.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Interface


The two-inch LCD screen is relatively easy to see, and the interface is user-friendly. With up and down arrows to help navigate the menu and a save button to select your setting of choice. The menu offers six options: Settings, Drive App setup, Parking Guard, Voice Control, Travelapse, and Gallery. There is also one button to save videos, but the voice command is more convenient. To initiate a voice command, you say 'okay Garmin' and then request that the device perform an action, like 'take a picture' or 'save a video'. This is not only convenient, but it's safer than physically messing with the device while driving. The GPS records your coordinates at all times and offers lane departure and collision warnings, but these aren't very accurate.

garmin 57 - the lcd screen is clear and easy to see, despite the subpar video...
The LCD screen is clear and easy to see, despite the subpar video quality.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Visual Footprint


Compared to the other options in our test suite, the Garmin 57 is a midsized dash cam. Its measurements are 2 1/2 by 1 5/8 by 1 3/8 inches, roughly the size of a large egg. It does a good job of staying out of the way, but we are not fans of the adhesive mount as it is not as reliable or easily moved.

garmin 57 - the adhesive mount is not the highest quality option.
The adhesive mount is not the highest quality option.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Should You Buy the Garmin 57?


This dash cam has a lot to offer with great safety features like lane departure warning, collision ahead warning, 'OK Garmin' voice commands, and GPS location. That being said, its lack of quality video makes this device a very hard sell. The video capture, interface, and profile are pretty good, but the image leaves a lot to be desired, and you can forget about nighttime footage. There are other options in our test suite that provide better performance across the board for less money.

What Other Dash Cams Should You Consider?


If you want something with wonderful video quality, the Vantrue N2 Pro Uber Dual is an absolute steal, as it is measurably less expensive than the Garmin 57. If reliable video capture and a user-friendly interface are more your priority, the Nextbase 622GW doesn't miss a beat. Unfortunately, its video quality is subpar and it's very expensive compared to the rest of the options in our test suite.

garmin 57 - the garmin 57 features are great, but its ability to capture quality...
The Garmin 57 features are great, but its ability to capture quality imagery is lacking.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Hayley Thomas and Matt Spencer