BMW M5 Forum and M6 Forums banner

1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
400 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Well I have had the new Escort 8500X50 for exactly a week now.

Today I hardwired it into my car, and while I was at it I also connected the Lidatec to a switched power source in the overhead console as well since I appear to be too stupid to remember to turn it off.

How well does the 8500X50 work? To be quite honest about it, I have to say amazingly well. In fact, I will relate a very interesting story to you about how it did just the other night.

I was cruising about 85 on the highway, keeping a respectable distance behind a Camarro of some sort. He had passed me and I decided to keep about a 1/2 mile behind him. He had a detector as well which I saw in his front window as he passed.

After several miles of this I all of a sudden got a POP radar alert, followed by a Ka radar band alert just seconds later. When the POP went off I hit the brakes. As I crested the hill I saw the highway trooper pull out from the median and stop the Camarro. A classic case of propperly used POP radar.

Since I have had the detector I have been astonished at how many POP shots I have detected, mostly in the city. 3 to date on my drives to work. Seems there are quite a few MPH Industries BEEIII or SuperBEE guns out here. I wasnt aware of there being any.

The 8500X50 has detected K band on major Bullevards at distances approaching 2 miles, with strong signal strength from 1 mile on in to when I see the cruiser. Not bad for urban driving. This is with the detector in AUTO mode. Thats where I have decided to leave it for daily driving as I have not had any false alerts to date, so the CITY mode has been unnecessary.

Ka band sensitivity is quite good also. I had an alert and saw nothing for several minutes, then I saw the cruiser. I figure the range that time was about 4 miles, highway with slightly rising hills obscuring the gun.

I still have only had one Laser alert with the Lidatec before I got the radar detector, and the LE-30 jammed that one. With the detector hanging off the sun visor I dont think I will get any laser alerts from it, so I will rely mainly on the Lidatec for Laser.

I am gaining confidence in my police countermeasures by the day. A couple more weeks of testing and cop hunting and I will be good to go.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
175 Posts
Sorry, cannot agree with you concerning the X50. See the thread entitled "Poll: Need New Radar Detector" (E39 M5) and my post there which is Number 6. Since my post there, I have taken a second trip from New Jersey to Florida and return with both the X50 and the V1 on my dashboard. Again as on my first trip there were several instances of the X50 not alerting on Ka until the ploice car was almost on top of me. But with the V1 I knew well ahead that it was there and with the arrows that it was in front of me. While my test is not scientifically conducted as to picking up POP, I continue to find under actual driving conditions that the V1 is a better choice. Add in the arrows, and the V1 is THE choice.
Since I cannot test the POP, I do not know how well the X50 performs for that function. However whatever lead it may have over the V1 may no longer exist as the newest V1's now have POP detection. (I will be updating my V1's in Jan '05 when the updates are available for existing units).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,610 Posts
Pete said:
With the detector hanging off the sun visor I dont think I will get any laser alerts from it, so I will rely mainly on the Lidatec for Laser.
Don't count on that happening. :hihi: Everytime I've been lasered my Escort has gone off - a startling experience you won't soon forget!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,610 Posts
phinnbillM5 said:
Since my post there, I have taken a second trip from New Jersey to Florida and return with both the X50 and the V1 on my dashboard.
I don't know which is better but I believe that using two detectors in the same car leads to interference due to the active (transmitting) circuitry as noted in a magazine RD test a while back. YMMV with the newest generation of detectors!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
754 Posts
What update is Valentine offering beginning in January?



phinnbillM5 said:
Sorry, cannot agree with you concerning the X50. See the thread entitled "Poll: Need New Radar Detector" (E39 M5) and my post there which is Number 6. Since my post there, I have taken a second trip from New Jersey to Florida and return with both the X50 and the V1 on my dashboard. Again as on my first trip there were several instances of the X50 not alerting on Ka until the ploice car was almost on top of me. But with the V1 I knew well ahead that it was there and with the arrows that it was in front of me. While my test is not scientifically conducted as to picking up POP, I continue to find under actual driving conditions that the V1 is a better choice. Add in the arrows, and the V1 is THE choice.
Since I cannot test the POP, I do not know how well the X50 performs for that function. However whatever lead it may have over the V1 may no longer exist as the newest V1's now have POP detection. (I will be updating my V1's in Jan '05 when the updates are available for existing units).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
400 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
I'm sorry to hear you have had such bad results with the escort phinnbillM5, so far I have not had similar experiences. I do know of one person who got poped for doing 84 in a 45 and his Valentine did not alert until it was too late as well. That doesnt make the Valentine a bad unit in and of itself either.

I have been using a radar detector since they first came out back in the 70's and this is my second escort unit. It always worked quite well for me. Even the Bell worked when I had one of them, they are much better, since Escort owns them as well now.

I was lent a Valentine1 earlier this year to try by a friend who swears by it. It was the latest version as of June this year when he got it. It was a good detector, but I personally found the arrows to be a useless distraction for me, and it had far too many false alerts for my taste. I am glad to hear that Valentine has finally decided to get off his soap box about POP and fix his detector to sence it. I did not however see anywhere on his webbsite where they say the new one will have POP capability. I hope he also incorporates an auto-mute feature this time.

It's gotten to the point with me that I can tell which direction the radar is coming from just the repetition of the beeps or their intermittence. The one thing that really sold me on the new Escort was the units intuitive ease of use, and the two Expert mode options. It's a nice option to be able to either know the frequency of the radar right away, or to see up to 8 threats in use along with their respective signal strength, all at the same time.

As already stated, it's not a great idea to run two detectors at the same time in a car. There is active circuitry in them and one never knows exactly how they affect each other, thats why SpeedPro Measurments Labs only runs one at a time when they do thier yearly detector evaluations.

I suspect that the Valentine unit will again be competitive once they get their unit to detect POP, but I would not go so far as to say they are going to be a clear leader by a wide margine. I think one would be served well no matter if they got a Valentine, Bell RX65 or the Escort. It's not like any of them are completely foolproof. But they are all plenty good enough.

It pretty much boils down to just which unit you have and what sort of confidence you have in it over time and encounters, as well as ones experience in using a detector properly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
175 Posts
Howler;
The V1 website has been updated to show that POP coverage is now in the new units being shipped. In the Upgrades Section it states that the software updates for the POP coverage for existing units will be available in Jan 2005. To see if upgrades are available for a V1 you have (not just POP but any new features that have been added since one purchased his/her unit) enter your serial number. If upgrades are available you can send in your unit and get it updated -- actually when I did that a year ago (my units were 2 years old) they just sent me new units. It is not free; there is a cost (depends on how old your unit is; the older the unit the higher the cost). Cheaper than buying a new one, but you have to decide if the features to be added are worth the cost. Atleast you have the option.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,817 Posts
phinnbillM5 said:
... I have taken a second trip from New Jersey to Florida and return with both the X50 and the V1 on my dashboard....
Why is this thread in the Group Buy section?

I did a similar comparo with a V1 and a 2-year old Bel that was in the Wifee's car. The active feedback design of detectors can cause interference, but even so, it convinced me that the Bel was very nearly useless. It falsed relentlessly (much, much more so than the V1), the range was pitiful, and no arrows! I quickly ordered a V1 for her (I now have three - one in every car).

I just realized I bought $2600 worth of Lidateks, V1's, and a StealthOne in the past year :rolleyes: I need therapy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,227 Posts
I went to the V1 site and put in my V1 serial #. It showed my unit as having 1.7 S/W with 1.8 being the latest version. My unit is 4 years old, but I am not sure that version 1.8 includes the new POP upgrade. The upgrade would be $189, well worth it if it includes the new POP technology.

I really like the ability to upgrade the units from time to time.

Mark

btw - the claim that once you have lived with the "arrows" you can't live without them is absolutely true.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
400 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
I'm not someone that is so intransigent in their opinions that I cannot be persuaded by a good case.

So I have to ask, why do you all think the arrows are so great a feature? Does it really matter to you all if the radar is behind you or in front of you? Arent you going to slow down in either case? As for the side arrows, that just looks like a way that Valentine camoflaged false signals.

I have to be honest, my first reaction, as well as every one I have ever driven with, when the detector goes off is to get off the gas and then look at the detector, not the other way around. If a detector does not false, side arrows are pretty superfulous. If the detector does go off you have to slow down, irregardless if the radar is from the front or the back. Then resume speed when the alert is over for a time.

I can even see cases where the side arrow alerts might even give a false sence of security to the driver when in fact there is police radar out there.

I think auto mute is a far more useful feature than the arrows and Valentine didnt have that from day one, and not sure if it has it now either.

I went to valentines site and read it a day or two ago to get the info on the POP upgrade. For the longest time he only harped on why POP should be recalled, now he is making disparaging claims against those detector companies that addressed this threat much earlier than he did. I believe he was forced into it due to lacking sales, not any great concern for his customers. While that would not be a reason for me to stay away from his product if it can be proven to me that it is far superior to his competition, it does bring in to question his credibility. But i digress.

Why dont some of you that have a valentine unit explain to me the overwhelming advantage of the arrows. I just cannot see it right now.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,817 Posts
Pete said:
... explain to me the overwhelming advantage of the arrows...
Hi Pete,

For decades I owned Bels and Whistlers and never understand what all the fuss was about those V1 arrows. That is, until I actually owned a V1 and got used to the arrows. The arrows have two distinct advatages:

1) Where multiple bogies are present (a common occurance). The arrows give valuable information on new threats. For example, let's say the detector senses one of those K-band traffic emitters that the highway department puts up to alert drivers of dangerous situations. In Michigan, they are often attached to those portable "One Lane Road Ahead" sign on wheels to warn of construction. Without the arrows, you would never know if a cop is zapping cars from the sides or rear.

2) When traveling familiar routes, or routes that have businesses/stores, the arrows are pointing to the X or K band motion sensors. If the arrows are not pointing to those stores or motion sensors, you better slow down. If you don't have arrows, you're toast.


The V-1 can be programmed to turn off X, K, etc. But like it says (or used to say) somewhere on the V1 website, the military has a saying "Know all potential threats" or some such. Good advice in my book.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,227 Posts
Why are the arrows good you ask?

I don't necessarly get off the gas when my V1 goes off. What if the police are behind and I hit the brakes when the detector goes off? Well he can certainly see that I have a detector because he saw my brake lights go on. I would down shift to slow down if I am using the arrows. I have had a number of instances where a police car is slowly coming up from behind. I know this because my V1 begins to warn me way before the police can get an accurate reading. I know they are behind because of the arrows.

The more information the better off you will be.

Mark
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
400 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Thanks for the answers. Maybe the one month I lived with the valentine wasnt enough to get used to it entirely, and appreciate the arrows.

Right now I'm going to look at it this way, I've used non-valentine units for the last 30 odd years and havent gotten a ticket and I just got this Escort, so I'll keep it for a year or two and then the next one I buy will be a Valentine. Then I can give it a proper workout. With so many of you all raving over the arrows there must be at least something to them, even though I still think like Elevens did when he had the non-valentines.

On a brighter note, this afternoon I was driving to lunch and an attempt was made to laser me. Once again the Lidatek did its job in fine fashion, even though I was not exceeding the limit by more than 5mph. It certainly does make the laser feature of a detector redundant, and thats a real nice feeling.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,504 Posts
Pete said:
I have been using a radar detector since they first came out back in the 70's and this is my second escort unit.
Yeah, me too...my first unit was the original Snooper -- that black square job that was mounted on a diagonal. I even sent it off to modified by a company in Texas for better performance. That was followed by the "Fuzzbuster" when it came out. :hihi: Next up was one of the first Escorts (which failed w/o my knowledge even though the power-on test worked fine, and I got a ticket for 75 in a 55) followed by the first Passport.

Re the arrows in the V1 -- I found them very useful on the Interstate as they help to locate the source location of rolling radar in particular. Additionally, the multiple bogey indication coupled with the arrows provides a lot of potentially useful information at times. My main complaint about the V1 is around town use where even in Advanced Logic mode it is adept at finding door openers for me everywhere.

Chuck
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,817 Posts
Fuzzbuster -hahahaha. Back in the day my buddy had a "BearFinder" or Bear something. Anyone remember one of those?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,817 Posts
asdf54 said:
is it beartrack scanner by uniden?

No, it wasn't a scanner, just a radar detector. Cut a full-size Kleenex box in half, paint it black, and place it on the dashboard front and center, and you'll get the picture. Looked ridiculous and didn't even work... :1:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,461 Posts
I wish I could have gotten my hands on a Beartracker before they stopped making them.. I think that would be the icing on the cake for a police countermeasure equipped M5.
 
1 - 19 of 19 Posts
Top