We review the best radar detectors right now and run you down what you need to know to choose the right one for you.
Gone are the days of the Electroleat Fuzzbuster (1968) with its simple, single-knob design. We’re in an arms race with innovators on each side outnumbering the other camp every few years. This ever-evolving place has developed some amazing technology, beloved by people trying to set new land speed records and data geeks alike.
After all, whatever your motive, radar detectors and the range of products in their class are all about the data. “Radar detectors, I’ve found, are a good way to understand what’s going on around you and add some extra situational awareness,” explains Ariel Brevi. With a background in electrical and computer engineering, Brevy runs VortexRadar.com and has been posting in-depth tests of radar detectors and other automotive accessories on YouTube since 2012. He adds, “I love driving. I like feeling safe when I’m driving – just knowing what’s going on around me – and I love technical things.”
Before we dive in, we suggest you do a little research about radar detectors and their technology. Even the simplest products in the category require education in some basic terminology. To reach the full potential of your new detector, you need to know your Ka band from your Ka band and whether you are passing through the state where you should enable X band.
Here are some of our top picks for a variety of scenarios, based on practical tests, user reviews, and expert input. Next, we’ll tell you what to consider when choosing a detector, including the sad truth about laser detection.
Compare Among the best radar detectors for 2021
|Overall Best Radar Detector|
Valentines One Gen2
Long distance detection, Good false alert filtering, Directional arrows, App availability
No built-in GPS, no multiradar detection, the simple interface will be a turn-off for some drivers
|Best Radar Detector Overall Runner-up|
Long distance detection, Directional arrows, Color display, Built-in GPS