Having a camera system for your semi truck has become standard practice for drivers across the U.S. The reason for this is that dash cams can offer valuable data in the event of a collision or other driving-related incident.
A semi truck camera system can give drivers and fleet managers serious peace of mind. The device stores footage from the dash cam, which can provide companies with video evidence if and when they need it.
But the benefits do not stop there. Many camera systems also provide drivers with GPS tracking, distracted driving alerts, and accident detection, protecting drivers from accidents before they even occur. While there are many dash cams to choose from, we’ve compiled a list of the best semi truck camera systems available today.
And when you’re finished reading, check out the other articles in our ‘Dash cams for trucks’ series:
- Dash cam for semi trucks vs cars: What’s the difference?
- Truck dash cam benefits for road and driver safety
- Can dash cams increase ROI for your business?
- Best semi truck camera system options
Quicklook: Best semi truck camera systems
- Best for complete fleet management: Motive
- Best for behavior monitoring: Azuga AI SafetyCam
- Best for AI-optimized processor: Samsara AI Dash Cam
- Best for GPS enabled dash cam: Garmin DezlCam LMTHD
- Best for real-time risk management: Trimble Video Intelligence
- Best for easy installation: Nexar Beam GPS dash cam
Semi truck camera systems can attach to various parts of the truck, though they are typically placed on the windshield or rear bumper. Dash cams for semi trucks capture video footage of the day-to-day operations of the vehicles.
When your truck is turned on, the cameras will immediately begin recording events at hand. The footage is then sent to the cloud, and from there, the footage can be retrieved if and when it is needed.
6 best semi truck camera system options
Now that we’ve explored the features that you should look for in your camera system, it’s time to answer the question, ‘what dash cam do truckers use?’ The following list of six semi truck camera systems are the top choices according to experts in the industry!
Best for: Complete fleet management
The Motive semi truck dash cam is one of best on the market for fleets. It provides everything you need to manage your drivers and your company’s insurance all in one package! This system is trusted by over 500,000 drivers. It has the largest network of users for semi truck camera systems. It offers GPS tracking, asset tracking, electronic logs, safety features, driver coaching, and so much more.
- Utilizes AI to detect distracted driving and tailgating
- Sends alerts to drivers and fleet managers
- 10-minute installation
- Detects distracted driving
- Gives scores to drivers based on driving behaviors
- Provides tips to drivers on how they can improve their driving
- Consolidates fleet management into one platform
Disadvantages: No pricing listed on website
Pricing: Request a custom quote
Azuga AI SafetyCam
Best for: Behavior monitoring
With its advanced AI capabilities, including facial recognition and distracted driving detection, the Azuga AI SafetyCam provides real-time alerts and coaching opportunities to drivers, ensuring they maintain safe and responsible driving habits. The dash cam’s intelligent features accurately analyze driver behavior, allowing fleet managers to gain valuable insights and take proactive measures to improve safety. By capturing crucial video evidence and providing actionable feedback, the Azuga AI SafetyCam proves to be an indispensable tool for monitoring and enhancing driver behavior, ultimately promoting a culture of safety within your fleet.
- Utilizes AI to detect distracted driving and flag events automatically for review
- Loop recording that continuously records and overwrites old footage to ensure continuous coverage
- High-definition (HD) video recording; resolutions such as 1080p or higher.
- Wide-angle lens for a broad field of view.
- Dual facing
- Customizable dashboards for fleet managers to target specific driving behaviors
Disadvantages: Pricing information on their website redirects to an error page. Quotes are only available via customer service.
Pricing: Request a quote
Samsara AI Dash Cams
Best for: AI-optimized processor
If you are searching for a dash cam that uses advanced computing processors for object detection and live scene analysis, then you’re in luck! Samsara’s dash cams are designed with safety in mind. With HD video footage day and night, along with up to 100 hours of storage space, the Samsara dash cam can reassure fleet managers that their employees are safe on the road. This product is trusted by more than 20,000 customers!
Special features: AI-optimized processor
- HD video and infrared LED light for low-light scenarios
- 100 hours’ worth of video storage
- Installs in under 15 minutes
- Built-in driver coaching with in-cab alerts
Disadvantages: Customer service only available via email
Pricing: Request a custom quote
Garmin DezlCam LMTHD
Best for: Simple GPS-enabled dash cam
Garmin is one of the most recognizable names when it comes to GPS systems, but with competitors like Google and Apple Maps, Garmin has had to be very innovative in order to stay relevant. Their dash cam comes packed with features that benefit truck drivers immensely, including GPS routing options and alerts that notify drivers about route warnings such as sharp curves and steep heights.
Special features: GPS with live traffic updates
- Sturdy camera
- Wi-Fi and Bluetooth capabilities
- Fleet tracking
- Hour logging
- Small camera size
- Not all suction cups are sturdy enough to hold the camera
- 360° camera view
- Live streaming
- Low-light visibility
- Side and back-up views available
Disadvantages: Pricing unavailable without contacting Lytx directly
Pricing: Request a custom quote
Trimble Video Intelligence
Trimble Video Intelligence stands out as a top choice for real-time risk management. It goes beyond traditional dash cams by integrating with Trimble’s telematics system, providing fleet operators with immediate access to comprehensive insights and analytics. With its advanced AI capabilities, Video Intelligence acts as a neutral eye witness, capturing high-quality video footage synchronized with engine data. This enables fleet operators to protect their drivers, equipment, and reputation by swiftly addressing incidents and potential false claims. The solution’s focus on privacy compliance and its powerful coaching tool features further enhance its suitability for fleet risk management.
Best for: Real-time risk management:
- AI processor
- On-demand video access: provides the ability to request specific videos in near real-time, allowing for quick access to video footage for review, analysis, and sharing with relevant parties
- High definition 1080p resolution
- Scalable to any fleet size
- Up to four camera configuration capabilities including forward facing, rear facing, wireless back up camera, and cabin monitor providing 360 view of truck
- Cost is more expensive than most dash cam solutions
- Canadian coverage is lacking in lanes that are away from populated areas.
- Online portal can take time to learn. While there is a lot of data funneling into it, it may take new users time to find what they are looking for.
Pricing: Request a quote
The Nexar Beam GPS dash cam is easy to use and install. This no-thrills option works through a connected smartphone app. You get the advantages of a simple, intuitive app along with the ability to see full drives and pull up clips on demand. While this dash cam doesn’t have a built-in screen, the app more than makes up for it. It’s compatible with most cell phones, arguably making it the easiest to use, best wireless camera system for semi truck fleets.
Best for: Ease of use
- Exceptional app, compatible with Android and iOS
- Extract clips from a full drive
- Easy to install
- Larger built-in storage options
- Compact design
- Discrete design
- Moderate price
- Easy to install
- Suction mount
- Parking mode vehicle protection
- Loop recording
- Some customers complain of unreliable recording
- Some have issues with the user experience or interface
Pricing: 169.95 to $189.95
How does a semi truck camera system work?
Can a dash cam work without being plugged in? Surprisingly to some, absolutely. A semi truck surveillance camera system works by offering a forward-facing dash cam, a dual-camera dash cam, or 360-degree camera system. No matter which camera you prefer, dash cams help drivers protect themselves on the road. These systems encourage safe driving practices for truck drivers, protect the vehicle itself, and improve operational efficiency.
Depending on which camera option you choose, dash cams can help drivers confidently manage their route while capturing footage of events happening near the semi truck. Used in conjunction with cloud-based video recorders, drivers will gain full security and protection of their assets.
What makes a good semi truck camera system?
There are many important features to look for in a semi truck camera recording system. Before we explore the various factors worth mentioning, consider why you are searching for a dash cam in the first place.
Are you looking to reduce false claims with the help of camera footage? Trying to incentivize your drivers? Interested in speeding up the insurance claims process? Or are you searching for a lower insurance rate overall?
There’s no right or wrong answer to these questions, but depending on your needs, you might find cameras with certain features more appealing that others. This means you can look past camera options that have features you won’t utilize in favor of dash cams that suit your needs better.
No matter where you plan to install the dash camera system, you will want to ensure that you are able to easily mount and wire the device properly. If a camera system requires professional installation, you should consider its other features before writing it off completely. However, factor the installation cost into the price to make sure it is within your budget before committing to it.
Trucks do not operate on the conventional 9-to-5 business schedule. Instead, many trucks are on the road at night and in the early hours of the morning. Finding a camera that utilizes night vision technology can provide you with clear camera footage even during the darkest of nights.
Determine how many hours of storage you will need to keep on the cloud. Do you only need 24 hours’ worth of storage, or would you be better off with an option that stores up to 100 hours? Be sure you understand the semi truck camera systems storage capacity before you purchase one so that you aren’t blindsided later on when you need storage space the most.
High resolution is a great feature for dash cameras. The higher the resolution, the better clarity and quality your pictures and videos will have. Higher resolutions mean details are more visible.
Need to see a license plate clearly? That’s no problem with a high resolution camera. But it’s important to remember that with higher resolution comes a greater need for even more storage space.
What is a wireless link? It’s a way to connect your semi truck camera system to Wi-Fi. This allows you to use the dash cam for semi truck without having to utilize your cellular data or pay expensive carrier costs.
What dash cam should you use?
A dash cam for semi trucks is a personal choice. Whether you are an owner-operator or a fleet manager, your needs will differ from other people’s preferences. Dash cams from companies like Motive and Samsara are some of the most popular options for fleet managers.
But as an owner-operator, you might not need all of the bells and whistles that dash cams from those brands offer. In that case, a simple semi truck wireless camera system might do the trick and suit your management needs a lot better. No matter what your needs are, be sure to check the features of each semi truck camera system to ensure that the one one you choose checks all of the boxes.
The proper placement of a dash cam is in the center of your windshield. It should not be situated in a way that obstructs your line of vision.
The main difference between a Wi-Fi and non Wi-Fi dash cam comes down to connectivity. A Wi-Fi dash cam can use a wireless network to transmit footage to your smartphone or other devices, while a non Wi-Fi dash cam requires manually removing the memory card to access footage.
There is currently no U.S. law that requires semi truck drivers to use dash cams in their semi trucks. However, many semi truck drivers prefer to use a camera system for peace of mind in the event of an accident or a legal dispute.
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