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Radar Detector Bands
Radar Detectors Features
Radar Detectors Bands.Radar detector bands are simply radio signals emitted by certain devices, such as radar guns, garage-door openers, and radar detectors themselves. Radar detectors are designed to pick up a variety of bands because police radar guns use several different radio signals to catch speeding vehicles.
The four radar detector bands most commonly used throughout the country are K, KA, X, and Laser. The X band is the oldest and generates a lot of false alerts by radar detectors, but Radardetector.org says it still makes an appearance in New Jersey, Ohio, South Dakota, and Mississippi. The K band is used by slightly less than a third of today's radar guns, and causes some false alerts in radar detectors. The bulk of the radar gun arsenal relies on the KA band, which produces a small number of false alerts in radar detectors. The Laser band, or LIDAR as it's sometimes called, is becoming more widespread and ranks very low on the false alert meter. On the other hand, LIDAR signals can't be detected as quickly as X, K, and KA bands. Some radar detectors, cheap and otherwise, contain a laser scrambler to combat police LIDAR, affording the driver a brief moment to slow down. But many experts, like those at RadarBusters.com, argue that these devices don't actually work and say manufacturers' claims can be misleading.
Every cheap radar detector on our list is capable of picking up any of these bands. However, some are better at detecting signals on certain bands. For example, the Cobra XRS 9945 is very good at picking up K and KA bands, detecting them approximately 30,000 feet away, but it doesn't notice the X band until about 10,000 feet away. (This functionality has a lot to do with a radar detector's range, which is explained below.) Some cheap radar detectors attempt to filter out the pulse rates of other LIDAR signals that don't emanate from police radar. The increasingly popular LIDAR-based adaptive cruise control and lane-departure systems found in some newer cars can cause false alarms on radar detectors even though these features don't interfere with the police radar guns. Experts at Laser Veil note that the LSID feature on the Whistler XTR-695SE helps filter out these non-relevant signals.
Don't Bother Cheap Radar Detectors
Rocky Mountain Radar RMR-C435
The RMR-C435 is affordable and features a lot of extras, like VG-2 and VG-3 Immunity that shield the detector from police devices designed to spot the detector, and a laser scrambler. Many users insist the detector doesn't work, that it has problems with the X, K, and KA bands and the jamming and scrambling features don't do their jobs. Read more »
Rocky Mountain Radar RMR-C435 Review
Cobra XRS 9955 Review
Cobra XRS 9945 Review
Beltronics Vector 955 Review
Whistler XTR-695SE Review
April is car care month. If you haven't adopted a car care plan or it needs a tuneup, follow our guidelines.
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