Road Angel Halo Ultra Review

Road Angel Halo Ultra Dashcam
Overall we loved this dashcam - particularly the video and snapshot recording quality - but we also identified a couple of weaknesses
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What We Say

What is it?

We were lucky enough to get our hands on a Road Angel Halo Ultra dashcam to road-test. This has been picking up momentum over the last year or so after winning the Which? 'Best Buy' award for dashcams in March 2022.

The first thing that attracted me to it, was the phrase '4K RESOLUTION' on the box. Next is the '3 Year Warranty'.

Decent dashcams are understandably more expensive nowadays, so it's reassuring to know that you've got the first three years of your investment covered. When I say decent, I mean by a brand that you recognise and trust. You can still get very cheap dashcams on Amazon, but you get virtually no warranty with those.

I wrote the text on this page here last year, stating my "two most important features that are a must-have on any dashcam". One was recording starting automatically when you start your engine, and the other was that the image quality has to be really good. So, let's get straight to that latter point!

My default dashcam of choice has been the Nextbase 322GW - and we've got those hard-wired into both of our cars.

I took a still snapshot from both the Nexbase 322GW and the Road Angel Halo Ultra. If you're into image manipulation and resolution - like I am - you'll appreciate the full technical details.

My Nextbase 322 snapshot came out at 1920 x 1080 pixels (often called 1080p). The Halo Ultra one came out at 3840 x 2160 pixels (2160p). Multiply the two dimensions, and you come up with almost 8.3 million pixels on the Halo Ultra compared to the Nextbase's 2 million.

To show a practical example, both of the following images are shown at 15% of their original size - so you can see that the images stored by the Halo Ultra are virtually double the size of the Nextbase 322GW.

What this means in practice is that you're twice as likely to capture the detail required in case of a serious incident with the Halo Ultra, than you are if you've got a dashcam that only records at 1080p.

Incidentally, whilst we were trialling this dashcam on the M6 motorway, a BMW driver attempted an exit from the outside lane of the motorway. I was slowing right down - in lane 1 - as I'd seen what he or she was up to - but at 70mph starting speed, it was still a bit hairy. I had to replace the soundtrack, as you can probably imagine what was being said inside our car. This was taken at dusk, but you can still clearly see what was happening. I could also zoom in to see the full registration of the vehicle, which could have been crucial if this had gone the way it looked like it was going:

Another feature that was new to me after many years of driving with a dashcam, is the internal memory storage. The Halo Ultra has what I would describe in ancient terms as 'solid-state' memory for videos and snapshots which are captured. This means you don't have to buy a separate SD or microSD card. In fact, there isn't a slot for one at all, so your recordings are going to be stored on the internal memory until you download them to your Smartphone or Tablet. Inserting and removing these cards - and their general unreliability - really holds back most dashcams and makes them more difficult to handle, but not this one!

One last picture from me. This is the view of the Halo Ultra from inside the car:

You can see that it's fairly low-profile - and has a reassuring blue light to confirm that it's recording. This is vital when using a dashcam that doesn't have a screen.

If it sounds like I love the Halo Ultra, then yes - you've got me. However, to give a balanced review I should also point out what I thought were its weaknesses.

When I tried to download the video of the BMW on the motorway, I found it very 'unintuitive'. Is that even a word? What I mean is, I'm a 25-year veteran of all things I.T. - and it wasn't at all obvious how I could download just the bit of video that I needed. You have to swipe left and right between snapshots of video footage, and then click to download the segments you want.

I wanted to get a screenshot of this process, but the app seemed to be taking over my telephone and wouldn't let me hit the screenshot button (which I normally swipe down to access).

I've seen other reviews where users are complaining about the app, so hopefully Road Angel are engaging with real users of this dashcam to improve it.

Anyway, the main thing was that I did get the footage I wanted eventually. It's much more important that it's captured in sufficient detail in the first place. It's secondary how long it takes you to download it.

The other thing that was a bit frustrating was when driving over smallish pot-holes on the motorway, the dashcam took snapshots numerous times. I'm guessing it thought that someone had bumped into the car or something. This was only a minor annoyance, because I'm never going to want to access those screenshots.

There are other features that I haven't gone into at all, but because of the 4K recording quality - I'd say that even without those, you can't compare this dashcam to any other model unless that's also recording at a minimum resolution of 4K!

We liked:

  • Feels like it's really well-made
  • The 3-year warranty is very reassuring
  • 4K snapshot and video recording quality is excellent
  • Really easy setup, without needing/using external memory cards

We didn't like:

  • Fiddly to download recordings
  • Takes unnecessary snapshots when driving over pot-holes
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