I'm currently using a micro SD card in a USB reader, and have had some luck, but I'm still not 100% sure it's working right. I may also just not understand how it's supposed to work.
I guess my main question would be: should the red dot be on the dash cam icon when driving?
Unless your car is sleeping, or you intentionally turned it off, the red camera dot should always be on- even parked/stopped.
If the car is awake (and you didn't turn it off specifically) dashcam is always recording.
Sentry is only on when parked (and only if your settings are such that it should be on in that spot).
When I initially get into the car, and it's in park, the sentry mode and dash cam icon are gray. If I tap the sentry mode icon, both the sentry mode and dash cam icons get a red dot. Next, when I put the car into reverse, the sentry mode icon disappears, and the dash cam icon red dot goes away.
I guess it MIGHT be correct to act that way if you turned off dashcam, but turning sentry on in that state turns dashcam back on only for sentry (remember- sentry itself does not record video- only dashcam does)
I just went for a drive, put it in park, then tapped the dash cam icon and the "save" option was available. I hit that, then I entered the viewer and was able to see the saved footage.
Does that sound correct?
You're saying the dashcam icon did NOT have the red dot during the actual drive but appeared to have recording and you were able to view said recording? No, that does not sound correct at all.
Do I have to tap the sentry mode icon before every drive to start recording the dash cam?
You shouldn't need to ever do anything at all with Sentry for any reason other than turning sentry on or off.
Dashcam is a separate function.
By default it's supposed to be on if the car is awake (though you can manually turn it off pressing the icon when it's on).
Tapping the dash cam icon itself, doesn't do anything except open the menu. It seems odd that I have to tap sentry to start the dash cam, and that I have to do it every time I start a drive.
Page 74 explains how it's supposed to work, including changing the dashcam icon between recording, paused, and saved states.