How do you choose the best radar detector? What functions and features should a high-performance radar detector have? Read our guide and choose informed.
If you are a driver, you certainly know how frustrating and unpleasant it is to collect a fine, regardless of its value or reason. Among the main reasons why you can receive a fine is exceeding the legal speed.
Of course, driving is an activity that must be treated with the utmost seriousness because your life and that of others in the car, as well as other road users, can be endangered.
Speed limits are not a bad thing, but we must admit that sometimes, due to lack of time, we happen to break them, although not much. Even if you are a very responsible driver, you happen to exceed these limits, and a fine, especially for a small exceeding of the limit, may even seem unfair. The best radar detector can save you from this problem.
Top 3 recommended radar detectors
The radar detector is a device that manages to detect radio waves emanating from the radar , alerting the driver of the traps placed by police officers in traffic. Thus, the driver will have time to reduce speed to comply with legal limits, if necessary, thus avoiding an unpleasant fine.
Radar detectors have been legal in Romania since December 1, 2006 . These should not be confused with anti-radar devices , which aim to jam the radar signal. Anti-radar devices are illegal .
The radar detector receiver, on the other hand, does not interfere with the radar signal at all. It simply picks up electromagnetic waves and turns them into electric current, which allows it to "read" the radar signal. Now that we know what it is to find out how to choose the best radar detector?
How to choose the best radar detector
An ideal radar detector is not the easiest device to choose. You have to consider many aspects related to advanced and complex technology, and the way it works that is not understood by everyone.
Without some minimal knowledge in the field, choosing can be more than difficult, and given that the price of a good radar detector is not exactly low, you can't afford to make the wrong investment.
There are several models of radar detectors on the market, some are already outdated, and others have the technology to really help you. How can you tell the difference between them? We have prepared a shopping guide for you that includes all the information you need. Read on to find out how to choose the best radar detector for you and your car.
Although it seems a strange criterion of differentiation, the age of a radar detector is a very relevant detail. The so-called "undetectable " radar devices currently operate in traffic. Old radar detectors can still detect them, but too late because the devices are already calibrated.
The best radar detector is therefore a model as recent as possible , which is able to react much faster than the oldest and be more effective in terms of range. So keep this in mind before you buy such a device.
What technology is it equipped with?
The technology with which radar devices work today is more and more advanced, so detectors must keep up. Modern radar devices are equipped with Instant On technology and POP mode, which causes old detectors to detect them too late, after the radio waves have already been calibrated on the car.
A modern radar device that works with POP mode, has a high speed and a pretty good accuracy, reacting in 67 milliseconds and detecting speeds of up to 320 km / h, with a margin of error of +/- 5 km / h . So you need a device that can detect the POP signal .
Such a detector also reacts very quickly. It will detect the POP calibration signal while the radar is calculating the target. You will have time to brake and you have a better chance of escaping without a fine.
The Pulsed / Instant On Detection option is another aspect that an ideal radar detector should have. State-of-the-art radar devices emit laser pulses that allow a faster detection of the target machine than in the case of electromagnetic waves.
The function mentioned above allows the detection of these laser pulses. Check the efficiency of the radar detector by analyzing the reaction time which shall not exceed 0.5 seconds . They must also be able to detect the presence of laser pulses at 360 degrees.
The radio waves of a radar propagate at frequencies that can cover different distances within a band. According to the road regulations, four important propagation bands are used: X, K, Ka, Ku . The X and K bands are easier to detect and can be monitored from a distance long enough to slow down in time.
The Ka band, on the other hand , can no longer be detected by old radar detectors , which is quite problematic considering that it is the most used band in Romania . The most suitable radar detector is also able to detect the Ka band , so check this detail before buying.
Ku tape is used in some European countries and is very difficult, if not impossible to detect , even by the newest and best performing models.
The detection distance varies depending on the frequency used by a particular band. In other words, a radar detector will be able to detect the radar signal from a distance farther away or closer to the radar transmitter.
The longer it detects the radar signal, the more likely you are to slow down before the car is calibrated. Most models on the market can detect the signal emitted by the radar device only 1.6 km away , a far too short distance , because the speed of the car is calibrated from a greater distance.
Therefore, it is always better to opt for a model with the largest possible detection distance . This will not expose you to the risk of being fined.
What functions should the best radar detector have?
Among the most important functions of a radar detection device we can mention the following three: AccuSweep, alpha-numeric display and voice warning . All these very useful functions appear most often in newer models.
- AccuSweep – A feature that allows fast and accurate detection of the Ka detection tape, calibrating the scan on a single segment of it. It is a function present exclusively in the latest generation models.
- Alpha-numeric screen – a screen or display on which data expressed in numbers and letters can be displayed proves to be very practical. On this screen equipped with LED can be displayed important messages such as Safety Warning System (SWS) or Safety Alert (SA), useful for assessing the condition of the road, as well as for warning in case of presence of emergency vehicles in traffic.
- Audible warning – another very practical function that allows the driver to drive safely, without too much distraction, he manages to process the received information and to be able to keep his optimal concertation in traffic.
The price of a high-performance radar detector varies between 500 and 4000 lei. More than the cost of such a device you should consider the performance and the generation to which it belongs . In general, a cheap radar detector will not be able to help you much now, because it is most likely outdated by new technologies .
A very expensive radar detector is of course very good in most cases, but there is a risk that competing technology (that of the radar transmitter) will evolve much too soon and your investment will not be worth it. We recommend that you invest in such a detector only if your budget allows.
In the end, it is best to find a balance, checking the main performance indices at the best available price .
The brand is as important an aspect as the ones presented above. Since each manufacturer brand has formed a reputation over time, it is good to choose the tree that inspires your highest level of confidence and offers the best equipped products. There are four major brands currently selling radar detectors.
It is considered that the best radar detector is produced by Beltronics , the only company that can provide you with the AccuSweep function that we have already talked about above.
Cobra, Whistler and Escort are three other reputable manufacturers that have released devices with modern technologies. But before checking the brand, check the generation it belongs to, and always buy a radar detector from the latest generation launched.
The best radar detector: recommendations
Taking into account the above tips, but also the opinions of users, we still present some models of high-performance radar detectors that offer an excellent quality / price ratio.
1. Whistler PRO-93GXI radar detector
Whistler GT-93GXI remotely identifies all radar devices that operate, similar to speed detection devices, in the K band.
For the most accurate laser detection, the detector allows the selection of the laser segment used in each country.
Moreover, the detector can receive signals emitted instantly by radar guns that monitor the speed of movement, with the function of Pulse Protection®.
No false alerts – Increased Quiet and AutoQuiet comfort – GPS technology.
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2. Whistler GT-468GXi portable radar detector
11 radar / laser bands.
360 degree reception. Pulse Reception (Instant-On).
GPS technology. OLED display. Selectable tones.
Technology adapted to the new radar devices.
The use of the GT-468GXi radar detector helps to reduce the number of fines and to prevent accidents, maintaining the driver's attention span.
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3. Cobra RAD 450 radar detector
The Cobra RAD 450 portable radar detector sees the new radars and laser guns from a distance and can capture laser signals, but also signals emitted instantly by radar guns that monitor travel speed.
Sensitivity control: Highway – City.
Display: OLED – 4-level brightness adjustment – Dark mode.
Radar receiver: Laser: 910 ± 50 nanometers – Receiver type: Superheterodyne.
Immunity detection: VG-2 – Spectrum I.
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4. Whistler GT-268Xi radar detector, portable, 360 degree reception
Detects European laser guns (Traffipatrol XR, Riegl, Jenoptik, Laveg, Truspeed, etc.).
X / K filtering mode – provides additional levels of rejection to reduce false alerts.
Ka filtering mode – provides multiple levels of signal processing to reduce false alerts.
POP type detection – impaired speed detection capability even at short radar exposure.
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5. Cobra RAD 250 radar detector
Cobra RAD 250 remotely identifies all radar devices in Romania , it works the same as detection devices, in the K band.
In addition, with LaserEye , the detector is able to capture 360-degree laser signals .
Instant-On Ready , the detector can receive signals emitted instantly by radar guns.
Reduces false alarms by adjusting the detection sensitivity according to the travel speed .
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