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The Best Radar Detector

Last updated on September 9, 2019

We looked at the top 10 Radar Detectors and dug through the reviews from 32 of the most popular review sites including Radar Test, Rated Radar Detector, Gazzette Review, Digital Trends, New York Times Wirecutter, Car and Driver and more. The result is a ranking of the best Radar Detectors.

Best Radar Detector

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Our Picks For The Top Radar Detectors

Show Contents
Our Take
  Best Overall

Escort

iX Radar Detector

Overall Take

Crowdsourcing ToolA radar detector that uses crowdsourcing thanks to a useful mobile app.

  Also Consider

Escort

MAX360 Radar Detector

Overall Take

360-Degree ProtectionA high-tech radar detector that shows you where police are stationed.

  Also Great

Valentine One

Radar Detector

Overall Take

Highly SensitiveA highly sensitive radar detector to alert you to speed-detecting radar all around.

  Best Value

Cobra

RAD 450 Radar Detector

Overall Take

An affordable radar detector with tons of useful features.

Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, Simplemost analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
17

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the radar detectors available to purchase.
10

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

View All Product Rankings

32

Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources.

23,792

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy.

The Best Overall

Escort iX Radar Detector

Our Expert Score
9.2
5 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
8.5
371 user reviews
Our Take

Crowdsourcing is an important feature in today's radar detectors. The Escort iX Radar Detector links up to an app that allows users to input police sightings, enhancing its capabilities. You'll also get highly accurate radar detection and a lower price than other devices in its class.


The Best Bang For Your Buck

Cobra RAD 450 Radar Detector

Expert Summarized Score
8.5
4 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
8.5
826 user reviews
Our Take

This handy radar detector promises fewer false alerts, thanks to a patented technology, and a long range of up to two miles in flat open conditions. It comes with a 1-year warranty and comes with everything you need for installation.

Our Findings

Escort iX Radar Detector

What We Liked: Crowdsourcing is an important feature in today’s radar detectors. The Escort iX Radar Detector links up to an app that allows users to input police sightings, enhancing its capabilities. You’ll also get highly accurate radar detection and a lower price than other devices in its class.

Cobra RAD 450 Radar Detector

Best Value

Cobra RAD 450 Laser Radar Detector: Long Range, False Alert Filter, Voice Alert & OLED Display (Electronics)


List Price: $149.95 USD
New From: $149.95 USD In Stock
Used from: $129.95 USD In Stock

What We Liked: This handy radar detector promises fewer false alerts, thanks to a patented technology, and a long range of up to two miles in flat open conditions. It comes with a 1-year warranty and comes with everything you need for installation.

ESCORT MAX360 Radar Detector

What We Liked: One unique feature on the Escort MAX360 are the directional arrows that show where police are stationed. Though this radar detector is more expensive than others, it comes equipped with lots of bells and whistles, like a patented autolearn technology that reduces false alerts and promises 360-degree protection.

Valentine One Radar Detector

Also Great

Valentine One Radar Detector (Tools & Home Improvement)


List Price: $399.00 USD
New From: $798.98 USD In Stock
Used from: $798.98 USD In Stock

What We Liked: Advance notice can be very handy when you’re using a radar detector. and in that area, the Valentine One excels. You’ll also get high sensitivity, which is helpful in alerting you to speed-detecting radar.

Our Radar Detector Buying Guide

A speeding ticket can put a serious damper on your day. Not only will you face a fine of $150 on average, but you’ll also have to deal with the drama of being pulled over by a police officer. Although smartphone apps like Waze can alert you that a police officer is coming up, do you really want to trust your fellow travelers to report one?

The best solution remains the same thing people used to avoid speeding tickets before we had smartphones. A radar detector picks up the emissions produced by police officers’ devices. Today’s top radar detectors are advanced enough to get around the many issues consumers faced in the past with radar detectors. They’ll find the band most often used by officers and filter out the common causes of false alarms.

If you don’t want to give up the crowdsourced approach to traffic alerts, don’t worry. Some radar detectors sync up with an app that helps you access the power of the crowd. This combination of information will ensure you have the best chance possible of knowing when your speed is about to be checked.

One problem with having a radar detector is that the police may be able to detect you have one on board. A device called Spectre can detect radar detectors and potentially lead to a ticket, depending on where you live. In Virginia and the District of Columbia, use of radar detectors is illegal. You can turn your detector off once it sends an alert since you’ll be slowing down anyway. Once you’re safely past the police officer, you can then turn it back on. There are also some radar detectors that claim to be undetectable to Spectre detectors.

Of course, the most important feature is accuracy. It’s important to look for a radar detector that captures all suspected radar incidents without routinely setting off false alarms. Once you have your detector, there are tweaks you can make to ensure it’s as accurate as possible.

Simplemost Fun Fact

Speed limits date all the way back to the 1600s, when the colony that later became New York passed a law that wagons, carts and sleighs could not be operated at a gallop. In 1901, Connecticut became the first state to pass a speed limit, which was 12 mph in cities and 15 mph on more rural roads. A national speed limit was finally set in the 1970s to help reduce the impact of high fuel prices. In 1974, a speed limit of 55 mph was set nationwide, at which point traffic fatalities began falling. By 1983, they’d dropped from 4.28 million to 2.73 million.

The Radar Detector Tips and Advice

  • As valuable as radar detectors are, it can also help to have fellow travelers alerting you to police officers ahead. The Escort iX Radar Detector and Escort MAX360 Radar Detector connect to a smartphone app that allows users to report all radar and laser encounters, with the information reported as alerts through the detector.
  • Accuracy can be tough to quantify, but the Escort iX Radar Detector uses technology that is often implemented in high-end radar detectors in order to reduce false alarms.
  • Range is also important in a radar detector. The Valentine One notifies drivers well in advance of a potential radar incident. Its rear-facing antenna can also keep a lookout for any radar behind you as you travel.
  • False alarms are an ongoing issue with radar detectors. Both the Valentine One and Cobra have a bad habit of picking up every hint of radar. The Valentine One doesn’t mute DSP and GPS signals, which means you’ll probably be alerted to every radar you pass.
  • One popular feature on the Escort MAX360 Radar Detector is its directional arrows, which show you the direction of the radar in relation to your car. However, the arrows can have a slow reaction time, making them not as useful.
  • Readability is important in your radar detector. Alerts mean nothing if you can’t decipher them. The controls on the Escort iX Radar Detector are clearly labeled, with all functions easy to understand. The Cobra detector’s display is notably easy to read, even in bright sunlight.
  • You don’t have to blow your savings to protect yourself against speeding tickets. Though radar detectors can vary greatly in price, you’re sure to find one that fits your budget.

About The Author

Avatar
Stephanie Faris 

Stephanie Faris is a former information technology professional who spent most of her career working with computers and printers. Now a novelist and professional writer, her writings on electronics have been published on Online-Tech-Tips.com and Switching to Mac, among many others. When she isn't writing about technology, she's often checking out the latest news on the upcoming iPhone release.