10 Best Affordable Radar Detectors in 2019

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Radar detectors can help you to avoid expensive speeding tickets and traffic violations, and these handy pieces of car equipment have become increasingly affordable and accessible in recent years, helping you to save more money in the process.

As they are easy to use and easy to install, affordable radar detectors are a useful tool to have in your arsenal unless you live in an area where such technology is illegal. In order to get the most reliable radar detection and avoid fines and tickets as completely as possible, you’re going to want to buy the best affordable radar detector, you can get hold of.

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  • 360-degree radar and laser detection
  • All band radar protection
  • EZ programming
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  • Real-time ticket protection
  • 360-degree coverage
  • Autolearn technology
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  • 360-degree coverage
  • Digital signal strength meter
  • City/highway selector

We’ve tested a wide range of different models of affordable radar detector, so you don’t have to, saving you the time and effort required for extensive research and simplifying your shopping experience significantly. Below, you’ll find our best affordable radar detectors reviews, breaking down the most important features of each of our favorite models of radar detector in 2019.

View the Best Radar Detector , Below.

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1. Escort Passport 8500X50 Black Radar Detector

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Offering a high detection range and full 360-degree protection from laser and radar gun systems, the Escort Passport 8500X50 Black Radar Detector is an affordable radar detector that promises a high level of powerful radar detection for your protection and safety.

The enhanced radar receiver of this radar detector provides a long-range warning on all major radar systems including newer and more innovative radar systems. It's Digital Signal Processing system gives an exceptionally high detection range and minimizes false alarms, a feature enhanced by the ESCORT patented AutoSensitivity mode.

Why We Like It
  • 360-degree radar and laser detection
  • All band radar protection
  • EZ programming
  • AutoSensitivity mode
  • Digital Signal Processing
Size
Miniature
Weight
2.4 lb
Dimensions
5.32 x 1.25 x 2.85 in
Our Verdict

The Escort Passport 8500X50 Black Radar Detector offers almost unparalleled radar and laser detection for maximum protection from most laser and radar gun systems.

Editor Rating
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2. ESCORT MAX360 Laser Radar Detector

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The Escort Max 360 Laser Radar Detector is a compact, affordable radar detector that packs a high powered radar detection punch. Its 360-degree coverage protects you from radar signals in all directions, giving you advance warning from the front, sides, and rear of your vehicle, all while automatically filtering out non-threatening signals to minimize false positives.

The systems of this radar detector are connected to Escort's Defender Database, providing constant updates on hot spots and high-risk areas as well as police threats spotted by other Escort users to give live updates on safe and dangerous areas on your journey.

Why We Like It
  • Real-time ticket protection
  • 360-degree coverage
  • Autolearn technology
  • Clear voice alerts
  • Connected to Escort’s Defender Database
Size
Miniature
Weight
1.7 lb
Dimensions
5.32 x 1.25 x 2.85 in
Our Verdict

Offering a high level of connectivity and smart auto-updating, the ESCORT MAX360 Laser Radar Detector is one of the most innovative and intelligent laser and radar detector devices on the market in 2019.

Editor Rating
great value rating

3. Cobra ESD7570 9-Band Performance Detector

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The Cobra ESD 7570 9 Band Performance Detector offers a compact design in a refined, futuristic style, and is designed for high performance radar detection with maximized range. Its handy digital signal strength meter shows the relative proximity of radar signals to the detector, helping you understand the locations and rough direction of radar signals.

As well as showing clear band identification icons on its ultra bright display screen to clarify the exact type of signal detected. This model of radar detector also detects VG 2 and Spectre radar detector detection systems while remaining invisible to them, protecting you from unwanted risks.

Why We Like It
  • 360-degree coverage
  • Digital signal strength meter
  • City/highway selector
  • Detects radar detector detection systems
  • Ultra-bright data display
Size
Miniature
Weight
10.4 oz
Dimensions
2.7 x 1.33 x 4.1 in
Our Verdict

Detecting the proximity of radar signals as well as their presence, the Cobra 9 Band Performance Detector gives more information than many other models of radar detector available in 2019.

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4. Uniden R3 Extreme Radar Laser Detector

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The Uniden R3 Extreme Radar Laser Detector is designed to maximize effective radar detection range, with long-range full 360-degree coverage to notify you of approaching radar signals from any direction long before they become a problem.

Its built-in GPS warns of known camera hot spots, while the mute memory false alert filter allows easy filtering out of false positive radar signal alerts for constantly improving radar detection accuracy.

Why We Like It
  • 360-degree coverage
  • Built-in GPS
  • False filter
  • Extra long range detection
  • Undetectable to Spectre systems
Size
Dashboard
Weight
1.65 lb
Dimensions
9 x 4 x 7 in
Our Verdict

Slick and powerful, the Uniden R3 Extreme Radar Laser Detector is a high powered radar detector system that offers unsurpassed detection range to give you exceptional advance warning of radar signals.

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5. Cobra RAD 450 Laser Radar Detector

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The Cobra RAD 450 Laser Radar Detector is a versatile radar detector with a number of handy quality of life features and a powerful core detection system. This model of laser radar detector features a helpful signal strength indicator, showing relative distances of radar signals from the detector to help you understand the positioning and relevance of radar signal threats.

It also includes a powerful IVT filter system, technology specially patented by Cobra, to effectively reduce false alerts from systems such as collision avoidance mechanisms, cutting alerts down to only those that you actually need to hear.

Why We Like It
  • Patented IVT filter technology
  • 2-mile range
  • Easy to read OLED display
  • Voice alerts
  • Signal strength indicator
Size
Miniature
Weight
11.2 oz
Dimensions
4.12 x 2.64 x 1.35 in
Our Verdict

Combining the high utility and quality of life features common to Cobra radar detector models with an unusually high detection range, the Cobra RAD 450 Laser Radar Detector is a powerful and feature rich model of radar detector.

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6. Escort Passport S55 High Performance Pro

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Offering high performance and a long detection range as well as advanced connectivity features, the Escort Passport S55 High-Performance Pro radar detector is an overall high-quality model of radar detector, offering some of the highest performance on the market in 2019.

This model of radar detector is compatible with the Escort Live network, providing real-time updates on hot spots and dangerous areas nearby for live updates on changing situations around you.

Functioning at a more extended range and detecting most regularly used bands of radar and laser system, this radar detector promises to keep you constantly up to date on the radar hazards surrounding you as you drive.

Why We Like It
  • Long range detection
  • Compatible with ESCORT live network
  • AutoSensitivity mode
  • Detects most radar and laser bands
  • Audio and visual alerts
Size
Dashboard
Weight
1.15 lb
Dimensions
8.4 x 8.1 x 1.7 in
Our Verdict

The Escort Passport S55 High-Performance Pro radar detector is one of the most advanced high performance radar and laser detector models on the market, making it an excellent choice for anyone for whom peak performance is an important concern.

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7. ESCORT IX Laser Radar Detector

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With 360 degree coverage to protect you from radar signals on all sides, the Escort IX Laser Radar Detector provides radar and laser detection from the front, sides, and rear of your vehicle and uses patented anti falsing technology to learn and remember false alerts, constantly improving the reliability of your laser radar detector system.

This radar detector is hooked up to Escort Live and the Escort Defender Database, giving live updates on changing threats and dangerous hot spots, helping you to stay ahead of evolving threats on the road.

Why We Like It
  • 360-degree coverage
  • Connected to Escort’s Defender Database
  • Clear voice alerts
  • Escort Live updates
  • Inbuilt GPS technology
Size
Miniature
Weight
1 lb
Dimensions
5.1 x 2.9 x 1.2 in
Our Verdict

Featuring a wide range of smart technology to help you stay constantly updated on changing threats, the Escort IX Laser Radar Detector is an exceptionally innovative and modern radar detector that's an excellent choice for users in need of live updates.

Editor Rating

8. Uniden DFR7 Super Long Range

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The Uniden DFR7 Super Long Range radar detector is an exceptionally high powered affordable radar detector. This model of radar detector offers a more extended range of radar detection than competing options, helping you to spot radar systems further in advance.

The radar detector system features an ultra-bright OLED display to convey information clearly and easily, showing important information such as current speed and radar band frequency. The in-built GPS system gives red light camera alerts and speed camera alerts, warning you of known camera locations for further safety and advanced warning.

Why We Like It
  • Built-in GPS
  • Super long range radar detector
  • Max Speed warning system
  • Ultra bright OLED display
  • Charging cable and suction mount included
Size
Dashboard
Weight
1.1 lb
Dimensions
8.25 x 2.7 x 7 in
Our Verdict

Designed for easy use and extra long-range radar detection, the Uniden DFR7 Super Long Range radar detector gives high performance in a clear and intuitive package.

Editor Rating

9. Cobra XRS9370 High-Performance

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The Cobra XRS9370 High-Performance radar detector offers a powerful and adjustable radar detection service designed to minimize false positives for a more accurate and stress-free radar detection experience.

Its super fast sweep circuitry gives a long detection range and complete 360-degree coverage for maximum detection of radar signals, and this radar detector is capable of detecting even the newest models of radar guns, such as Ku Band radar guns, Pop radar guns, and VG2 or Spectre radar detector detection systems.

Why We Like It
  • Superfast sweep circuitry
  • City and Highway modes
  • Detects even the newest radar guns
  • High detection range
  • 360-degree radar detection
Size
Miniature
Weight
4.8 oz
Dimensions
2.8 x 1.3 x 4.2 in
Our Verdict

Offering a wide range of adjustable settings, the Cobra XRS9370 High-Performance affordable radar detector is an excellent choice for anyone in need of a radar detector for urban and rural usage.

Editor Rating

10. Whistler XTR-145 Laser Radar Detector

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The Whistler XTR 145 Laser Radar Detector may be small and lightweight, with a small and unobtrusive case, but it contains a powerful and comprehensive radar detection system for complete protection.

This model of radar detector can identify all radar guns including laser, Superwide Ka band, K band, and X band approaching from all directions, covering the front, sides, and rear of your vehicle for complete protection. The clear icon display and tone alerts give clear notifications of detected radar alerts, keeping you aware and alert to your surroundings.

Why We Like It
  • 360-degree detection
  • Protection against all radar guns
  • Clear icon display
  • Tone alerts
  • Power cord and windshield bracket included
Size
Miniature
Weight
5.4 oz
Dimensions
4.4 x 1.4 x 2.8 in
Our Verdict

Packing a high level of comprehensive radar protection into a tiny package, the Whistler XTR 145 Laser Radar Detector is one of the best small and affordable radar detector models for most users.

Editor Rating

Guide to the Best Affordable Radar Detectors

How do you tell what makes a good radar detector? Well, there are a few major factors that you need to consider. There will be a difference between a silent running model and a voice alert one, as well as different modes such as highway and city modes. You need to find a unit that suits your driving style and your needs, and we’ve got a great range that covers just about everything. Read on below to see the frequently asked questions about the best affordable radar detectors.

What are the Best Radar Detectors for the Money?

We believe that a good balance between price and quality makes for the best affordable radar detectors: affordability is key here because a $600 unit is simply too much for regular people to consider buying. Professional personal investigators, police and even spies might have that kind of cash to drop on a radar detector, but most of us really don’t. There are a few common factors which make the best affordable radar detectors appealing to us, and here they are:

Long Range: the sooner your radar detector can pick something up, the quicker you will know about it and the more time you will have to make a decision about what to do about it. If a traffic cop is watching over a key interchange or bridge, it would be nice to know about it from your radar detector before you’re already speeding past him and have no way of getting out that ticket. Shorter range units are going to be cheaper, but they will also not work as well as more expensive long range units.

Ability to Link to Phones: this is a great plus for some newer models because it’s likely that you are using your phone for GPS or other driving related apps at the same time. This will mean that you can receive notifications, voice alerts and more on your phone without having the check the detector screen, which could end up being another distraction.

Ability to Identify and Ignore False Positives: the better the detector is at identifying things that aren’t police radars or lasers, the less false alarms you’re going to get. Slowing down suddenly is almost as dangerous as speeding in the first place, so having a radar detector that only works when it’s supposed to is a must!

Speed of Detection: this one is important, because it’s no use receiving a notification for a laser signal that you’ve already passed 5 minutes ago. The best radar detectors will be able to pick up signals and lasers quickly and effectively, which will give you time to react.

A good radar detector will make you a better driver and save you a ton of money in the long run.

How Good are Radar Detectors?

First off we need to understand how radar detectors work, and what their capabilities are. Some radar detectors will be better than others because of their range, their ability to ignore false positives, and their speed of detection. These factors depend on a few things, but let’s begin with the basics:

Radar detectors can pick up ultraviolet frequencies from other radar equipment, primarily from things like police radar speed cameras. They can detect radar from a long way away, but the range is so wide that it may pick up interference quite often. If they pick up a laser when you’re traveling over the speed limit, then you’ve already got a speeding ticket. Because the laser is the speed of light (check these brilliant pocket flashlights), as soon as you can detect the police, they can detect you too.

If you choose to use a laser-jammer to confound the police, be careful of your state or country’s laws because you might find yourself on the sticky end of a confrontation if you don’t follow the rules.

Just to be 100% clear, we do not condone illegal activity or circumvention of the law! These radar detectors are intended to make you and your child a better driver and give you a better awareness of your environment as you cruise around town. When traffic cops are setting up speed traps or checking the speed of traffic, they are also trying to remind you that you need to be safe on the roads and slow down for your own and everyone else’s safety.

What is the Best Radar Detector on the market?

Because we are aiming to give you the best affordable radar detectors, we haven’t listed the most expensive professional models that the industry has to offer. However, if we were to recommend a top pick, it would have to be the Escort Max 360, which tops the charts of many rating sites that are dedicated exclusively to radar detectors.

Why is this model so great? Well, it has all of the standard features that every best affordable radar detectors have, plus just about everything else you could think of. Check out the specs from Amazon right below:

    • Unmatched detection – Escort Max 360’s front and rear antennas scan rapidly in all directions harnessing the lightening-fast focus of Digital Signal Processing (DSP) to find threats faster and more accurately than any other detector.
    • Unmatched precision – Escort’s Max 360’s five levels of filtering ensure the quietest ride. Escort combines three driving modes plus speed-based sensitivity, Cruise Alert and seamless connectivity via Bluetooth to its Escort Live app.
    • Rich data plus the power of community – Escort Max 360 protects drivers beyond conventional radar and laser threats by preloading our Defender Database of thousands of red light and speed camera locations in North America.
    • Simple communication – Escort Max 360 makes locating and identifying threats easy. Directional arrows display the location of threats while a high-resolution graphic display shows the type, strength and quantity of signals plus real-time speed limit data. You may be interested in: Walkie Talkies Review
    • The total package – Escort Max 360 comes complete with everything you need: a unique Smart Cord with built-in alert lamp and mute button, our best quick-release magnetic Sticky Cup mount, travel case and a one-year premium subscription to Escort Live app.

One major con of the Escort Max 360 Radar Detector is that it is very pricey at just under $600, and this makes it one of the most expensive radar detectors out there. On the other hand, if you want a really high functioning professional model, this is truly the best function and durability you will find.

If you don’t have the cash to put down on an expensive unit like this one, you can still get a really good bargain on our list above. See also the best car sunshades for a baby in your car.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this article about the best affordable radar detectors, and don’t forget to like, comment and share this post if you enjoyed it!