The Best Radar Detectors – Review & Guide 2019

In Reviews by Magnus SellénLeave a Comment

Though speeding is prohibited, sometimes drivers find themselves going past the set limits. Traffic police officers are on the lookout for drivers that over-speed and getting caught can make you get a speeding ticket.

Tickets raise a lot of money as revenue from your pocket since you have to pay a fine for speeding. You should, therefore, look for ways to minimize the chances of getting a ticket.

You can do this through safe driving and obeying the set speed limits. Using a radar detector can also give you protection and prevent you from over speeding as you drive. This is a device used in cars which functions like a dash camera or portable GPS.

It utilizes speed detection hardware to give you a warning of police near you.  Law enforcers use radar guns to gauge the speed of a driver from a distance. These radar guns operate on specific radio waves which can be picked by a radar detector. Using a radar detector can, therefore, inform you of the presence of such radio waves according to the proximity.

Choosing the right radar detector can be hard since there are a lot of options out there. We are here to help you get the best radar detector.

Apart from reviewing some of the most common types, we will also further guide you on the crucial factors that you should be looking for as you choose the best radar detector.

The Best Radar Detectors

NamePriceDisplay TypeRating
Uniden R3 Check PriceOLED4.8/5
Radenso XP Radar Check PriceOLED4.8/5
Escort Passport Check PriceLED4.5/5
Beltronics RX65 Radar detector Check PriceLED4.3/5
Valentine One radar detector Check PriceLED4.2/5
Cobra RAD 450 Check PriceOLED3.9/5
Cobra DSP9200BT Check PriceOLED3.7/5
Escort max 360 Check PriceOLED3.6/5
Whistler CR90 Check PriceOLED3.5/5
Escort IX Check PriceOLED3.5/5

1. Uniden R3

360-Degree Protection

Whether you use your car to drive around town or go on road trips, this radar detector has the features that you need. The radar detector is equipped with a 360-degree digital signal processing that makes it easy to detect hiding cruisers from any direction.

It has a built-in GPS function which gives you additional cam detection. The radar detector is updated with speed camera positions, making it different from the rest of the radar detectors.  Uniden R3 has false alarm filters that minimize noisy interference from old car versions. This feature also helps in eliminating false positive radar detection.

The manufacturer also includes a limited voice control so that you can focus on driving without taking your hands off the steering. Thanks to the quiet operation, not everyone can know that you are using a radar detector. Though some people find the price of this radar detector high, it is a highly sensitive device that gives you value for your cash.

Most drivers who have used it before report that it is accurate since it can pick different types of signal bands, including Ka, K, and X. Regardless of your location, you can be sure that the radar detector will be able to detect any signal without delay. It is a long-range device which gives you alerts even when a radar gun is far. It gives you sufficient time to adjust your speed so that you don’t get fined for over-speeding.

You also get an opportunity to adjust the settings of your radar detector depending on where you are. It also eliminates any complicated instructions since you can access all the relevant configurations from the menu button.

Features

  • Radar sensitivity
  • Makes use of GPS
  • 360-degree protection

What we liked

  • Excellent range
  • Highly sensitive
  • User-friendly

2. Radenso XP Radar

If you want to avoid any radar systems around you, you can achieve this through the use of Radenso XP radar detector. This is also a sensitive device that can detect different signal bands. Whether a law enforcer is using the most advanced technology or an old version, you will not be cornered into speed traps.

It is a highly sensitive radar detector that has a long-range. It can also give you early notifications of radar systems within your vicinity. This detector handles false alarms through automatic muting. It mutes x and k bands at low speeds, thus reducing the number of false alarms. Radenso XP radar also contains a filtering system that prevents it from picking unnecessary frequencies.

You also get GPS lockout function which allows it to detect any false alarms. Thanks to the GPS function, your device can easily “remember” particular locations, thus reducing the likelihood of getting a false alarm twice in one location.

If you are new to using radar detectors, you may find this device a bit complicated since it does not come with proper instructions. You need some time to learn and understand how this radar detector works.

Features

  • GPS
  • Automatic muting
  • Filtering system

What we liked

  • Excellent range
  • It is sensitive
  • The device is also highly reliable

3. Escort 9500 Passport

Highly Sensitive

What makes this radar detector better than conventional models out there is that it is designed to pick not only K, Ka and X bands but also POP bands. Though most of the radar guns do not make use of this band, Escort Passport can cover you on different fronts.

The detector also works well with extended distances, giving you alerts before a law enforcer can catch up with you. Even when you are driving beyond the speed limit, you get enough time to slow down and regulate your speed before getting trapped.

You should, however, be aware that the POP mode of this radar detector makes it more sensitive, especially when you are driving in commercial areas. Activating the mode, therefore, can lead to some false alarms which can be quite annoying. The detector, however, prevents this through its GPS capabilities.

Escort passport is also pre-loaded with speed cameras locations as well as red lights. Getting this useful information allows you to slow down conveniently. The manufacturer also places all the settings in proper positions so that you can drive without any problems. You can quickly customize the settings depending on your requirements.

Most users also like the light options that come with the screen. For instance, you can let the screen remain dark if you don’t want the detector to distract your attention while driving. In this case, the display can only light up if an alert pops up.

Features

  • Speed camera locations
  • GPS
  • 360-degree protection

What we liked

  • It offers a good range
  • It is user-friendly
  • The device is also highly-sensitive

4. Beltronics RX65 Radar Detector

If you are looking for a customizable radar detector, this is a good option. The customizable features make it ideal for different driving styles. Its settings boost the consistency of your radar detector.  It has the potential to pick numerous bands, including POP. The speed detection technology can prevent you from getting caught off-guard while speeding.

It also has long-range capabilities that make it reliable at detecting speed traps from a distance. Unlike radar detectors that produce false alarms, Beltronics tries to prevent this through the incorporation of features such as advanced auto-scanning. The feature differentiates various bands with ease and contains specific settings that minimize the risk of false alarms. You can use the Highway and City settings quite conveniently.

The advanced auto-scanning feature comes in handy, especially when driving in busy locations. It helps you minimize interference to the radar detector. Unfortunately, this is not among the long-lasting brands in the market. You should prevent your machine from exposure to heat and sunlight since such factors can affect the performance of your radar detector.

Features

  • Advanced auto-scanning
  • Customizable settings

What we liked

  • It is easy to use
  • Good range
  • It minimizes false alarms

5. Valentine One radar detector

With Auto-mute feature

Are you in search of a radar detector that is easy to understand and use? Get Valentine One, which comes with all the information and readings that you need to operate the device. The manufacturer designed it to pick any band. It can detect any form of signal that different devices give out to prevent you from getting a hefty fine.

What makes this radar detector different from the rest is that it not only has long-range capabilities but can also inform you of the strength of the signal. It is a highly sensitive radar detector that does not produce a lot of false alarms. When you are driving in commercial areas, numerous signals within the vicinity can make the sensor produce some false signals.

Most of the drivers find this radar detector easy to use. The display contains lit-up arrows that can tell you the direction of the signal. This gives you time for you to adjust your speed before a police approach. Unfortunately, it lacks come of common features such as GPS technology.

Features

  • Lit up arrows on the display
  • Auto-mute feature

What we liked

  • It is reliable in most areas
  • User-friendly
  • Great range

6. Cobra RAD 450

Voice alerts

The high-speed detecting capabilities of this device are what make it one of the best radar detectors. You can use it to detect bands such as K, Ka, and X. It also shows you the signal strength of a particular signal and helps you identify a speed trap.

Apart from regular signals, this device can also detect laser devices, which makes it more reliable when a law enforcer is using a sophisticated device. You should not expect an extended range from this device. You may not have enough time to lower your speed.

Despite the drawback, Cobra RAD 450 is designed with IVT filter TM system, which gives it the ability to distinguish various signals originating from different devices. The machine can, therefore, ignore signals that are not related to devices used to detect driving speed. Thanks to this feature, you don’t have to deal with numerous false alarms even when you are driving in crowded and busy streets. It only gives you alerts that are in regards to speed traps.

Cobra RAD is a user-friendly device that gives you voice alerts so that you don’t have to keep on staring at the detector as you try to drive. The voice alerts can inform you when you should act so that you don’t get trapped. You can also use the settings to adjust the device according to your preference. Unfortunately, some users reveal that voice alerts are not as loud as you would expect. You may have problems hearing if you are don’t pay close attention to the radar detector. It is hard to use this radar detector alongside listening to music.

Features

  • IVT filter system
  • Voice alerts

What we liked

  • Minimal false alarms
  • Highly sensitive
  • Ease of use

7. Cobra DSP9200BT

This is a modern device that was designed for contemporary cars. It can detect different devices, including laser and radar guns, which are common in the industry.  You will like the impressive sensitivity of this radar detector. Installing this device in your car can help you avoid most of the speed detection devices that police officers use.

It also has a good range and gives you a fair warning before your car gets close to a speed detection device.  The producer takes extra measures to ensure that users find this device reliable. They outfit it with several filters which give it the ability to distinguish the relevant signals from those that are not. The detector can, therefore, avoid false signals.

You get the freedom to select between Highway and City signals depending on your location. The device tries to avoid commercial triggers as much as possible. Though the device is simplified, the suction cups are not as efficient as expected since they don’t offer the detector stability. Most people reveal that the price of this radar detector is on the upper side compared to how long it lasts. It is not the most durable detector available.

Features

  • Has numerous filters
  • Efficient speed detecting technology

What we liked

  • It reduces false alarms
  • You can use it with ease
  • It can detect laser guns

8. Escort max 360

Escort Max radar detector has one of the longest ranges when driving on a highway as well as excellent city performance. Its user-friendly features make it ideal for novices. For instance, you get both directional and over-speed alerts, which can help you drive safely.  Effective alerts can mute themselves automatically.  

With this detector, you can boost your driving habits and avoid breaking the law.  It also makes use of GPS, which connects to the satellite to enhance its detecting capabilities and filters false alarms. The GPS adjusts its sensitivity based on your speed.

All of the controls come with clear labels to guide a driver who is new to radar detectors. It does not need a lot of learning.  You also get additional features such as directional arrows and dual antennas to boost their performance. Since it is compatible with smartphones, you can sync it with specific apps and update them as often as you like.

The inclusion of a digital signal processor allows this detector to recognize radar bands that law enforcers use easily. This ensures that other signals from things like automatic doors do not disrupt your commute. The manufacturer of this radar detector has a lot of confidence in it such that they promise to pay for your ticket if you get caught as you use Escort max 360 for the first time.

Features

  • Over-speed and directional alerts
  • GPS function
  • Dual signal processor

What we liked

  • It is reliable and effective
  • Smartphone compatibility
  • It filters false alarms

9.Whistler CR90

The company behind this radar detector has an excellent reputation for creating high quality and affordable sensors. It designs this model with a lot of useful components that every driver can enjoy. With less than $300, you get a device that can detect standard radar bands. It is also equipped with a laser detection system.

Investing in this radar detector gives you 360-degrees protection, useful features, and excellent design. Unfortunately, some of the users have been reporting a higher incidence of false alarms from using this model.

Features

  • 360-degree detection
  • It can detect radar bands and lasers

What we liked

  • It performs well
  • Pocket-friendly

10. Escort IX

IVT filter system

Get an intelligent and reliable radar detector that can help you practice safe driving. This model is one of the best devices that has an extended range. It can detect different frequency bands, including POP, Ka, K, and X. The device’s superior sensitivity gives frequent drivers an impressive boost. If you are a constant driver, you should invest in this radar detector.

This gives you advanced detection, especially when driving on a highway to avoid getting a ticket for over speeding. It also makes use of DPS technology, which ensures that you receive early warnings to avoid speed traps and threats that could be ahead of you.

It incorporates the use of intelligent auto-learn technology and GPs to reject false alarms. There is also an in-built IVT filter that can minimize false alarms that come from other technological systems such as collision avoidance systems. 

Since this device can detect traps from a long-range, it is ideal for remote areas. The display is also easy to read, giving you an idea of the speed you should maintain. Feel free to sync your device with Escort live app.  Thanks to crowdsourcing, syncing it with a live app can help you get real-time alerts and threats related to traffic.

Features

  • IVT filter system
  • Intelligent auto-learn technology

What we liked

  • Syncing capabilities
  • Extended range
  • Minimal false alarms

Read this before you start hunting for the best radar detectors

For you to identify the best radar detectors, you need to know the most crucial factors to watch out for. There are also other relevant factors which should influence your buying decision. Here are some of the crucial factors that you should use to find a radar detector that will not disappoint.

Sensitivity

As you compare different devices, you should check how sensitive each one of them is since this factor is what determines how hard or easy it is to get caught. Understanding frequency bands can help you gauge the sensitivity of radar detectors. In the past, most of the radar guns used the frequency band X. These days some of the radar guns make use of K and Ka frequency bands to detect speeding vehicles. The advancement in technology has led to some law enforcement agencies start using laser guns. Ensure you get a device that can detect these frequency bands.

Range

Choosing a radar detector that has a long-range gives you enough preparation time. Such a device can tell where a speed trap is located even when from a distance. A long-range radar detector gives you enough time to slow down if you were over-speeding.

Filtering systems

You also need to choose a radar detector that comes with a filtering system. Different devices have similar frequencies as radar guns, including automatic systems and alarms. Such devices can confuse a detection system leading to a false alarm. That is why the best radar detectors come with filtering systems.

360-degree protection

Choosing a radar detector that has this feature can protect your car from various directions. If you pick one that lacks this feature, it can only give you alerts regarding upcoming speed traps. It cannot provide you with protection from behind. The best radar detectors come with 360-degree protection. If you have a vehicle with tinted glasses, buying a radar detector with this feature can be a waste since it does not work well with such glasses.

Alert features

Though most of the radar detectors give you visual cues that come as flashing lights, getting one that also includes audio signals is an added advantage. This ensures that you focus on the road so that you don’t have to keep on looking at the device. You should also choose a radar detector that has simple cues. It should only take you a glance to find every detail you need from the display of a radar detector.

Conclusion

The best radar detectors will not only save you from expensive tickets but also prevent you from losing your driving license. Though the specification of a radar detector matters, how it performs makes a significant difference. Our reviews have covered most of the details to help you choose one that can help you achieve your driving needs.

Resources:

How to install a radar detector – WikiHow

Hello I'm Magnus, the owner and the writer of this website. I have been working with cars since I was 16 and I'm specialized with in-depth Automotive diagnostics. Also been driving drifting for the last 6 years. I'm here to give you answers to all your automotive questions and I hope that you enjoy our content.

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