Dash cam review: The Cobra CDR895D Drive HD offers affordable dual-channel video

This dual-channel system offers near 360-degree coverage.

Cobra’s packaging barely hints that this dual-channel system is actually the CDR895D Drive HD model. But look for the box with the two cameras (front 1080p/160 degrees, rear 720p/130 degrees) behind the plastic window, and you’ll know you’ve got the right product. This probably is the right product for many users, thanks to its relatively low price and near 360-degree coverage.

The lightweight front camera mounts using a smallish suction cup, while the rear camera uses a semi-permanent adhesive mount. The whole deal is connected via a rather elegant y-cable with inline couplers. Figuring out where to run the wires will be the hardest part of the installation (hint: under the carpet). As there’s not much heft to the unit, keep the mount adjustment points tight, and use the light touch which is all the buttons require

The CDR895D’s controls and interface are top-notch. Four unmarked buttons below the small 2-inch display vary in function, which are explained by contextual on-screen icons. The whole deal is easy to learn and easy to use.

cdr895 daytime resize

Cobra’s CDR895D delivers great daytime video from both the front (shown) and rear cameras.

cdr895 nighttime resize

The CDR895D’s forward camera delivers great night video.

Video from the CDR895D’s 1080p/160-degree front camera is excellent. Video from the 130 degree/720p rear camera is merely very good. Night video was on a par with the Thinkware F770’s, which is to say as good as it gets. Headlight flare was minimal, and details prominent.

The CDR895D Drive HD is by far the cheapest dual-camera system we’re aware of, even when you add $50 for the option GPS mount (the Viofo A119’s is only $10). And the cool thing is, you don’t sacrifice video quality. Good deal.

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Jon L. Jacobi

PC World (US online)
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