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Radar Detectors

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47 replies to this topic

#1 of 48 OFFLINE   LewB



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Posted July 09 2004 - 12:34 AM

Anyone have recommendations regarding auto radar detectors ? I have a very old Uniden that seems to work OK but I'm itching for a new one. I see that most lines top out around the $300-350 range. Is a $300 detector that much better than a $150 detector ?

#2 of 48 OFFLINE   Chris Smith

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Posted July 09 2004 - 01:22 AM


It's expensive ($400) but it is (IMO) the best detector on the market.

For slightly less you can get a VERY GOOD detector such as the Passport 8500 X50. But if I was spending more than $300 for a detector, I wouldn't buy anything but a V1, but that's just me. There is, of course, almost a religious like debate over the V1 vs. the Passport, so don't be surprised that more than a few people prefer the Passport.

And to answer your real question, yes the $3-400 ones are MUCH better than the $150 ones. The sensitivity of radar/laser detection makes them much better. Also, with the higher end models you start getting some nicer amenities that I found I can't live without. In the V1's case (not sure about the new Passport) you get easy to read Bogey counting and directional arrows. Two things that I couldn't live without.
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#3 of 48 OFFLINE   Dan D.

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Posted July 09 2004 - 02:24 AM

There was a discussion about this a while back, but the recommendation for the Valentine 1 still stands.


#4 of 48 OFFLINE   andrew markworthy

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Posted July 09 2004 - 05:31 AM

Curiosity - you want a radar detector so you can break the law? Care to explain why your right to speed is more important than safety on the road? How about explaining it to a few parents grieving over the loss of their kids to speeding drivers?

#5 of 48 OFFLINE   Christ Reynolds

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Posted July 09 2004 - 05:36 AM

andrew, how about we wait until lew tells us what he is using it for before you jump on his back. i dont agree with deceiving the cops either, but the strange truth is that radar detectors are legal here, in most states. CJ
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#6 of 48 OFFLINE   andrew markworthy

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Posted July 09 2004 - 05:38 AM

They're legal here as well, I believe. I just cannot understand the justification for them. Well, okay, I can if you have a particularly vindictive local police force that gets you if you're driving even a microscopic fraction over the limit, but not so that you can speed just for the sake of it.

#7 of 48 OFFLINE   Carl Johnson

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Posted July 09 2004 - 05:47 AM

Speeding in school or construction zones is a bad thing but in many areas speed limits are set extra low primarily so cops can write tickets. It's like a local fundraiser.

#8 of 48 OFFLINE   Mark Danner

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Posted July 09 2004 - 05:48 AM

Look at Beltronics RX65 ($330) or the Escort 8500 X50 ($300). The Valentine 1 is also excellent. If you want to be under $200 try the Whistler Pro 58. The more you spend the better filtering you get which means less false alarms. Also the distance that the detector can detect increases as you go up in price. The top 3 that I mentioned range from 9-12 miles. The lower prices units are like 1-2 miles. If laser is prevelant in your area you may want to consider a laser jammer like the Blinder M-20. Radar detectors are not very effective against laser. People, there is a huge difference between speeding and driving recklessly. Going 80 in a 65 on the interstate is speeding. Going 50 through a school zone is reckless. Give the guy a break.

#9 of 48 OFFLINE   Shane Martin

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Posted July 09 2004 - 06:02 AM

Valentine one is the only one to buy. There was a long thread at HomeTheaterTalk about it and it was pretty much unanimous(sp?) which detector folks had.

#10 of 48 OFFLINE   Don Black

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Posted July 09 2004 - 07:25 AM

V1 or 8500. I went with the V1 of course... =)

#11 of 48 OFFLINE   Jeff Gatie

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Posted July 09 2004 - 08:06 AM

Actually, it is not even deceiving, that would be using a radar blocker or jammer. It is simply to notify you when radar or laser is in the area. If helps you prevent a ticket by getting you to slow down, the same thing that a ticket does, but much less expensive over the long haul.

And yes, as a relative of a law enforcement officer, I can definitively say that speeding and parking tickets are not punishment, they are revenue. There are quotas and goals set for each and sometimes the questionable ones make for great overtime in court. Ever wonder why there are more tickets written over the Memorial Day holiday than the July 4th or Labor Day holiday? Easy, Memorial Day is at the end of the month.

#12 of 48 OFFLINE   Steve_Tk



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Posted July 09 2004 - 08:11 AM

Detectors do not do anything against laser except let you know that your car's speed was just clocked.
Well I do not have a quota. Never have had one. Actually I write very few tickets, usually only in traffic accidents. I simply do not have time to do it. I do not know anyone around my department that has a quota. You know why our traffic enforcement units are out in force over holidays? Because on holidays our traffic accident counts go up to an extreme amount. Yep, that's right, people are out there dying. I know it's hard to imagine that the police are actually trying to reduce the 20,000+ number of people that died in traffic accidents last year. We have a DUI unit also, you think they are there for revenue? Of course not. They write a lot of tickets, but guess what, they are soley there to try and keep some drunk from killing you and your family. But I'm sure as the concerned citizen that you are you can always tell the police that you would rather take your chances with the drunks because you got a $70 fine for breaking the law, heavin forbid. If writing tickets and being seen on the side of the road slows people down through my area then that's fine. That's one less time I have to drive 100MPH (risking my own life because people are mostly morons and do not know how to get out of the way of emergency vehicles, if they even see them in the rear view mirror) to help someone that is dying and trapped in their car on the side on the road. Yes, tickets provide revenue. I could always just skip the ticket part and take yout to jail, because I can haul an ass to jail for any single traffic ticket I write. I guess we should let the public pick their punishment, jail or a fine? Or maybe I do not know what I'm talking about, you do seem to be the expert.

#13 of 48 OFFLINE   John Miles

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Posted July 09 2004 - 08:51 AM

Those deaths are caused by bad drivers, not just fast ones. Think about it: if 60% of highway accidents involve speeding, but 70% of drivers on the highway are speeding, what does that say about speed as a factor in accident risk?

When they issue you a radar gun that reads driver IQ rather than vehicle MPH, then I'll cheerfully support your right and duty to camp in the bushes with it. Until then, you are only fooling yourself if you think you're contributing to highway safety by focusing on speed enforcement to the exclusion of other violations such as aggressive driving, DUI, tailgating, reckless driving, and inappropriate lane usage. How many of those will your radar gun tell you about?

#14 of 48 OFFLINE   LewB



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Posted July 09 2004 - 08:57 AM

Thanks. I was going to put a sarcastic remark in about how helpful the radar detector is when I'm coming home from bar hopping Posted Image Posted Image
I adhere to the speed limit in 'around town' situations. I do not zig-zag between traffic either. I use the radar detector for highway driving when I'm doing 70-80 mph in a 55-65 mph area. Thanks for all the input.

#15 of 48 OFFLINE   chris_everett


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Posted July 09 2004 - 08:57 AM

I'm sitting about 30' from our sheriff's office dispatch center, and I can tell you that the vast majority of tickets that are written by them are because of accidents, extreme speeding, response to citizen complaints, and things of that nature. Officers in most places are far to busy to be sitting beside the road waiting to write tickets. No quotas, no goals around here. There are exceptions. In very small towns, tickets are a major revenue source, and of course the police are not as busy to begin with. And this is why I never speed through small towns, not even 1mph over. And some agencies go overboard from time to time. There was a suburb of Phoenix that had a reputation for writing tickets for as little as one over for a while (I would not have believed it if I didn't see a ticket myself. (A 26 in 25 ticket given to 60 year old guy with a spotless record driving a caddy.))State police up here had a stretch of that too, but those are the exceptions. IMHO, the best detector in the world is the Mk-1 eyeball.
--Chris Everett

#16 of 48 OFFLINE   CalvinCarr


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Posted July 09 2004 - 09:13 AM

What's funny is I drive I-95 and the Florida Turnpike regularly from Jacksonville to Miami. It takes me usually 4.5 hours averaging about 83 M.P.H. . I have yet to get a ticket in the five years doing it.


#17 of 48 OFFLINE   ChrisHeflen


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Posted July 09 2004 - 09:55 AM

Jeff and John thank you! I think it just depends on where you are, who you get, and what kind of mood the cop is in. I got pulled over for going over the speed limit,(12mph) but funny, nobody else in front of me or along side of me did either. Meanwhile a friend of mine was playing leap frog exceeding speeds of 100mph on the same stretch of road late one nite and got pulled over and the cop told him "he had a nice car and to keep it down and try to use I-84 for those kind of speeds as it is more condusive for those speeds". No ticket, nothing. I could go on and on, but I don't wanna detour the thread. The problem is, is that there's no standard. Unfortunately it's just the cops mood or whatever. Oh yeah, I have an Escort Solo and it sucks royal!!! Is there anything good @ a $100.00?

#18 of 48 OFFLINE   LewB



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Posted July 09 2004 - 10:40 AM

My next door nieghbor who is a cop told me that he had a judge tell him that he shouldn't bring in (ticket) anyone unless they were going more than 15 MPH over the limit. I'm guessing that anything under that is 'beatable', or not worth the effort cost/revenue.

#19 of 48 OFFLINE   Kevin Hewell

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Posted July 09 2004 - 11:15 AM

The last time a friend and I were on that road we were pulled over. It was just south of Daytona and I believe my friend was going 85 in a 70 zone.

#20 of 48 OFFLINE   Karl_Luph


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Posted July 09 2004 - 11:38 AM

I bought my paaport 8500 a couple of years back because it was cheaper than the Valentine and more places carried them. I know the Valentine is better, but I've been happy so far. I have to say I bought the detector, not so I could speed, (and I know this is going to sound kinda stupid)but, mainly to know that there is a police car in the area, possibly responding to a call and needing my undivided attention. Living in Houston, alot of timesI have the windows up,with the a/c going and radio on, so outside sounds (like sirens)are deminished alot. With the radar detector bleeping , it lets me know immediately so I can be onguard to pull over or allow right of way. Also, can't tell you how many times I've been alerted early on and watched some young fool speed past me and see him a few miles down the road getting a ticket. I guess it's how you intend on using the thing. Thanks for everyone writing in on this thread, it's a good one.

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