5 Best Motorcycle Radar Detectors – Reviews & Analysis was last modified: May 28th, 2020 by Lucas
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5 Best Motorcycle Radar Detectors (Updated Reviews) in 2020
When it comes to finding the best radar detector for motorcycle, things can get a bit overwhelming, given that there are multiple units out of which one can choose. The next selection contains the top picks out of the highest-rated devices, so you can certainly use it to choose the most suitable radar detector for your needs.
1. Escort Passport 9500iX
This Escort device is a highly effective motorcycle radar detector that is built to deliver long-range warning on a wide range of radar bands. The list includes K, X, Superwide Ka, as well as instanton POP modes. What makes it highly useful is the multiple rear and front laser sensors that work to provide 360-degree protection.
What you should know about this unit is that it ensures results in the widest field of view, while the GPS-powered intelligent functionalities included provide good results that avoid false alarms such as the ones produced by motion sensors, automatic door openers, and other similar devices.
Another aspect many riders appreciate is the fact that this unit comes preloaded with thousands of fixed position camera locations around the country, so these are not going to be a surprise either.
We all know that sometimes when riding one can be so focused on other matters at hand that fixed speed cameras can be forgotten, but thanks to this unit, this is not going to be the case. Plus, if you are driving through areas with a lot of automatic sensors and units, you can get a lot of false alarms using less effective devices.
This unit’s versatile functionalities include creating your own Escorts Defender Database, which allows you to use the many pre-loaded locations and add your own hot spots for a tailored experience.
The traffic sensor rejection capability means that you won’t be distracted by false alarms on the road, thus rendering the alerts a lot more accurate.
Given that millions of other Escort Detectors users participate in reporting traffic events, you will be able to receive warnings about police threats way ahead of time.
The display shows all the relevant information you need as you ride, including the vehicle’s speed, signal strength, and laser band, to keep you updated with everything that is going on.
The “mute” button could be smoother, as it sometimes needs to be pushed more than once to be activated.
If new lasers are implemented by the police, an upgrade might be necessary to be able to pick up those.
2. Adaptiv Technologies TPX Radar/Laser Detector
If you are looking for a radar detector for motorcycle that is specially made to meet a rider’s needs, then this Adaptiv Technologies model is the one you should take a closer look at. Given that riding a bike means having to deal with a wide range of tough conditions, the TPX model is water, vibration, and shock-resistant.
Furthermore, the manufacturer also took usability into account when designing this unit, which is why it comes with oversized buttons that are much easier to use by someone who is wearing riding gloves. You may also be happy to know that the LCD is large, angled, and positioned so that you get a clear view of the information it shows.
No matter in which riding position you may be, you’ll clearly read the display, even if direct sunlight is involved. As you probably already know, this is a crucial aspect when it comes to devices specially made for motorcycle riders.
Besides the adjustable LED visual alert that the unit includes, it can also be used with an optional wireless headset offered by the same brand. Plus, the device’s Main Console is directly powered by the bike’s battery, thanks to the Wiring Harness it comes with.
You can use the 3.5mm mono jack the harness includes if you want to integrate other communication or audio systems.
The unit can be easily used with a wide range of mounts, given that it comes with a Quick-Release Mount Plate.
This device is certified by Speed Measurement Labs, which means that it can detect all laser and radar bands used on public roads.
Besides the clear and wide display, you will surely also appreciate the rugged construction that makes this unit resistant to tough conditions.
Even though this unit is water-resistant, you may want to be careful and protect it if you encounter heavy rain on your way.
Where you mount it on your bike matters, so you may want to run several tests by passing through the same area, and see which location ensures the desired results in terms of accuracy.
3. TPX A-01-01 Motorcycle Radar and Laser Detection System
While this unit might not necessarily be a cheap motorcycle radar detector, it’s certainly one that provides very good results, which is why you should keep it in mind for your next purchase. One of the main aspects that set this unit apart from other similar ones is the fact that it’s designed while keeping a rider’s needs in mind.
The radar detector features a sturdy and rugged construction that is vibration, shock, and water-resistant. As you very well know, these are all important features for someone who is riding often in all sorts of weather conditions. Plus, the unit also features oversized buttons, so that the rider doesn’t have any problem using the detector while wearing gloves.
Since we’re talking about usability, it’s important to mention the display as well. This unit comes with a large and specially-made one that allows the rider to see the necessary information from any angle, even in direct sunlight.
While this might not seem to be so important for some users, it’s actually crucial in those moments when you don’t have enough time to take a long look at the display. Moreover, you can use the optional TPX headset, which is also wireless, for better results.
This unit can be effectively used to detect all the laser and radar bands the police forces use, while the 360-degree protection it ensures means you can rely on its results.
If you want to use other communication systems or audio one, you can use the 3.5mm jack or the Bluetooth Transmitter.
Thanks to the top-rated sensitivity, this detector is highly reliable even in crowded areas, while the adjustable LED alert makes it a lot easier to use.
You won’t have trouble using it with the brand’s mount or with other third-party ones, given that it comes with the special Quick-Release Plate.
You should place the LED alert where you can see it right away for the most effective results.
This unit is a somewhat affordable motorcycle radar detector, but it’s not the cheapest you can find on the market.
4. Escort RedLine 0100025-1 Radar Detector
In case you are looking at motorcycle radar detector reviews because you need to find a unit that is highly sensitive and provides long-range results, this Escort model might be the right solution for you. The manufacturer’s engineers took these exact particularities into account when creating this device, which means that you can rely on its high performance.
The ultra-bright alphanumeric display is easy to read, while the detected bands include K, X, as well as SuperWide Ka. Furthermore, the unit also comes with the Safety Warning System capability, while the construction includes a dual-antenna design, which means that performance is maximized and you get the longest warning time that is rendered possible by such a unit.
You can also rest assured that false alarms are not going to be an issue, given that the RedLine model includes an AutoMode that is able to intelligently reduce these. If you live in an area in which radar detectors are not allowed, then you should know that this is not going to be a problem either.
This unit includes the RedLine Total Shield technology that makes the device invisible to special detectors that might otherwise be able to locate its presence. Therefore, this is one thing less that you need to worry about.
This Escort model includes an AutoMute functionality that automatically reduces an alert’s volume once it let you know about any threat at the selected volume, but it can also be turned off.
You will surely like the fact that this unit is easy to use, given that it includes a SmartPlug power plug, and that up to 8 features can be customized based on your preferences.
The Digital Signal Processing capability it includes ensures superior long-range detection ability, as well as a reduced number of false alarms.
The exclusive technology this unit features makes it undetectable, and this includes newer technologies such as VG-2 or Spectre.
This unit doesn’t include a GPS functionality, so that’s good to be aware of if you do need to use one.
In a very crowded area, it can alert you more than it should, given that it uses the K band.
5. Escort Passport 9500iX Platinum Bundle Laser Radar Detector
In this Escort motorcycle radar detector review we are taking a closer look at the 9500iX Platinum Bundle unit which is an excellent choice if what you need is a reliable detector to use within and outside the city. If you are wondering what is one of the main things that set this product apart the answer is the fact that it includes a SmartCord live.
This feature is actually a revolutionary power cord that can be used for multiple purposes, including access via Bluetooth to Escort live which is the ultimate real-time network to protect yourself from tickets. This is actually an award-winning app that uses real-time alerts from other users in the same area to ensure protection against being caught off-guard.
With this in mind, it’s a good thing to know that this unit also includes long-range protection which means that you’ll get early warnings. Thanks to the fast response the unit gets from all radar bands, you don’t need to worry that you might miss out on something and get a ticket.
The range of bands this unit can detect include the SuperWide Ka, back-band, and the X-band, as well as the pop mode.
The Platinum Bundle ensures the highest standard offered by Escort in terms of accuracy and performance, while the technology included is the latest one.
Thanks to the Bluetooth Smart Power Cord, the unit can be easily connected to get all the necessary details and remain one step ahead of getting a ticket at any given moment.
The Escort Live app provides real-time information, which makes it a highly reliable and exclusive means to protect yourself from getting tickets.
Given that the unit comes with preloaded camera locations across the United States, you won’t need to worry about these either.
The suction cups included with the detector need to be installed with care as they can otherwise come off which is never a good idea.
If you are planning to ride in harsh weather conditions, then you should check with the manufacturer to see if there is a special protection that you should ensure for the unit.
Our Comprehensive Buying Guide
When it comes to radar detectors, these handy units can definitely make your life a lot easier, given that they are able to ensure your peace of mind as you are riding around the country. However, if you are not sure what to look for in such a unit, then you can surely know a bit more about the main characteristics that you should keep in mind before placing an order.
This particular category of products comes with plenty of choices, but not all of them are as effective as one might hope, so it’s a very good thing to take a bit of time and do some research on what benefits each model offers.
As you browse through the various options (or read this article that is here to make your life easier), you should also think about your own particular needs and preferences. Things such as whether you plan to use it in a big city or in the countryside, during sunny days or every day no matter the weather conditions are all things that can shape your choice.
If you only occasionally ride your bike, when the weather is nice and you can enjoy a nice weekend with your friends, then you don’t necessarily need a weatherproof radar detector. It’s always a good thing to have a unit with such a construction, but it’s not mandatory. However, if you are riding all the time and the weather can get tough, then this feature is no longer optional.
A bit about performance
Of course, the main reason for getting a radar detector is to avoid getting tickets in case you are speeding. It’s needless to say that the safest and ideal approach is to always follow the law when you are riding your motorcycle, but if you know that sometimes you do get tempted to get to your destination faster, then such a unit will definitely come in handy.
For this reason, the detection performance is a very important aspect that you should take into account. You should look for a device that can easily identify the signals used by the police, the most popular ones being Instanton POP, K, Superwide Ka, and X radar. Furthermore, the model should also ensure 360-degree protection, meaning that it can detect signals all around you.
Some units also include preloaded databases which let you know if you are passing by a location that has fixed cameras. In order to be useful, these maps need to cover the entire country, and they definitely come in handy, given that these fixed locations can sometimes be a surprise.
The detection range also matters a lot, given that it contributes to a unit’s overall performance. You should make sure that the device you choose lets you know well in advance that a police unit is nearby. This way, you’ll have the necessary time to slow down and avoid getting a ticket before the law enforcement’s equipment registers your speed.
As a general rule, you should be warned around a mile away from the radar in order to be able to react in due time. As you can imagine, the longer the detection range is, the better and more useful the device is for any rider. Given that when you are on a motorcycle, there are many things that can distract you, you should get a detector that comes with both audio and visual signals.
This means that you will be able to keep your eyes on the road, which translates to maximum safety. We all want to avoid getting tickets, but this should never mean that your safety shouldn’t come first. Keeping this rule in mind is the right approach for any rider out there.
False alert filtering
Given that we live in a world in which many items are operated through signals, such as automatic doors, one of the most common issues that riders experience when using a radar detector is getting false alerts. While this might not seem like such a big problem in some cases, if you are living in an urban area, false alerts can render a radar detector useless.
The good news is that manufacturers are aware of this issue as well and they have already taken the necessary technological measures to reduce its impact. Various models available on the market come with special features that adjust sensitivity and are more selective with the signals that they are receiving, based on the environment in which you are riding.
Most of the times you can choose between City or Highway modes that ensure a higher or lower filtering degree to make the radar detector as accurate as possible. It’s not really fun when you think you might get a ticket every few minutes, so having these features is very important for your own comfort.
Units that also include a GPS can do an even better job in this matter as they can use the information on your vehicle’s location to automatically switch between various areas and levels of filtering. Since you are investing your money into such a unit, you should choose a model that can warn you about any speed or red light cameras ahead.
Of course, this means that you’ll have the necessary time to adjust your speed and avoid paying a lot more money on a ticket than you would on getting such a unit.
Type of Radar Detectors
Those of you who are in the market for the best radar detector are probably wondering what the types of devices available for sale are. It’s particularly important to understand the options in order to make the right choice, especially if you are not familiar with the radar detector market. Therefore, in the next lines, we’re going to take a look at some types of radar detectors that you can currently find.
The first type of device that you can take into account is the corded radar model. This radar detector, just as the name says, comes with a cord that is used to power it. These devices are generally mounted on the dashboard using suction cups. The good part is that this is a type of motorcycle radar detector that ensures superior detection performance.
If you are not a fan of using power cords, especially for a radar detector, then you can go for a cordless alternative, as there are many on the market. These are usually powered by batteries, so they tend to be more versatile in terms of where you can install them. Moreover, you can use them on multiple vehicles if you don’t want to invest money in having a radar detector for each one.
The downside, in the case of cordless units, is that as time goes by and the battery level decreases, the device might be less effective against radars.
Remote-Mounted Radar Detector
A third alternative that you can look at is the remote-mounted type of device. This motorcycle radar detector is permanently attached to the vehicle, and it also tends to be more discreet than other units, thanks to a compact construction.
Of course, this depends on what type of functionalities you want from the unit that you choose. For instance, there are advanced models that act as both a radar and laser detector.
If you are not sure what you should go for, you can always ask a professional for a second opinion. In the case of remote-mount radar detectors, given that these units are permanently attached to the bike and wired in, you may need some specialized help to install them as well.
On the other hand, they also come with plenty of benefits, the most important one being that there’s a much lower chance of them falling out of position as you ride your bike. As you can imagine, this is very important first because you need to be able to see the radar detector as you ride, and secondly, because it can be dangerous if it falls and you take your eyes off the road.
Types of Radar Guns
Just as there are various types of radar detectors and speed cameras on the road, there are also multiple types of radar guns. Of course, the law enforcement officers are not very open about all devices that they are using, for obvious reasons.
Plus, new updates are constantly being made, so you want to be careful on the road and not fully rely on the radar detector all the time. With this being said, it’s good to know that there are a few main ranges of frequencies that radar guns use to detect a vehicle’s speed, namely the X, K, Ku, and Ka bands.
Of course, these frequencies are just a part of them, so you can certainly take a look at the ranges that the best radar detectors cover and see if there are any additional ones included that you could benefit from.
A Few Other Details
We’ve already talked about the various types of radar detectors that you can find on the market, but before you make your choice, you might also want to think about how you are going to power the device. The recommended alternative is that of connecting the radar detector to the bike’s circuit, as this way, when you turn the vehicle on, so will the unit.
In terms of mounting options, the most important aspect that you should keep in mind is that the motorcycle radar detector should be securely attached to the bike. This way, you won’t run the risk of having it fall off, which, in turn, can pose some safety issues as you are riding.
It also depends on the type of unit that you are using and if it comes with an integrated laser detector as well, as this might mean that it’s overall larger. If you plan on using suction cups to secure the radar detector, keep in mind that these need to be strong and adhere well to the dashboard. Otherwise, the bike’s vibrations are going to shake them off.
While choosing a great motorcycle radar detector can definitely help you avoid speed-related troubles on the road, keep in mind that you may not know for sure if any fixed speed cameras are installed as well on the road, so don’t be scared if these are signaled as well.
Usage and Device Protection
Moreover, given that you should keep your eyes on the road, and not on the laser detector, you can think about getting an alert system as well. This way, you’ll have the information from your radar detector sent to a receiver in your helmet.
Any experienced rider knows that when it comes to using a radar or laser detector, it’s difficult to get the information on time due to the noise. This is exactly where an alert system can come into play. Plus, you can use it to avoid speed cameras as well, depending on the model of radar detector that you choose.
When it comes to radar detectors, the most important part is to be able to use the unit properly, no matter if you are trying to steer clear of police officers or speed cameras. However, in order to do this, you want to make sure that the unit works properly, which is why you need to protect it from water and other elements.
Not all radar detectors are weatherproof, but if you plan on using it every day, this feature is mandatory. The same goes for any laser detector or similar gadget that you want to add to your ride in order to make the whole experience safer and more enjoyable.
Frequently asked questions
Q: What’s a radar detector and how does it work?
A radar detector is a specially-made electronic device that has the ability to detect if the police or other forms of law enforcement are nearby using a radar gun to detect the speed of moving vehicles. These two types of units have been around for quite some time resulting in a small electronic warfare.
While radar detectors identify the presence of a radar gun, radar guns have been constantly updated with new frequencies and more sophisticated software to counter the technology. While this means that radar detectors had to be updated as well, the result is an improved overall technology used today.
Furthermore, modern radar detectors also use GPS-based information gathered from drivers and riders to accurately place a speed trapping location on the map, which means that the chances of success are much higher. Of course, the police’s technology has evolved as well, making things a lot more complex in terms of avoiding getting speed tickets.
Q: How do I install a radar detector on my motorcycle?
There’s a significant difference between installing a radar detector in a car or on a motorcycle, given that we’re talking about an indoor versus an outdoor environment. And when we say that installing the unit on a motorcycle is different, we actually mean that it’s more complicated.
You want to make sure that the device remains securely attached to the bike, so the first thing you have to do is make sure that you buy or already have a proper mount specially made for these vehicles. Many radar detectors can be bought with suction cup mounting systems, but these are not necessarily the most effective ones, given that the unit can fall off the bike.
Then you need to pick the location on which you want to mount it, and the options include the handlebar, on a mirror, on the fork tube, or on the bike’s fairing.
Q: Are motorcycle radar detectors legal?
The answer to this question depends a lot on your location. For example, radar detectors are generally allowed across the United States, the exception being Washington DC and the state of Virginia. However, it’s important to take a look at the local regulations as well, as these can vary greatly and if you are not aware of them you might find yourself in more trouble than you would want.
Another aspect that you may want to keep in mind is that while having a radar detector might be legal, other legal regulations might prevent you from using one, such as those concerning devices attached to the motorcycle or things that drivers can have hanging from the windshield (in the case of cars).
The best approach here is to make sure that you check out the laws that concern you with the local authorities to avoid getting other fines that you might have not even thought about.
Q: What’s the range of motorcycle radar detectors?
As you can only imagine, having a unit with a greater range is always a better approach, given that it means you have enough time to slow down and avoid getting a speeding ticket. The general rule says that a good radar detector should give you around one mile before your bike is perceived by the police’s radar.
However, the answer here also depends on the area in which you are riding. For instance, if you are somewhere on a wide field riding on a highway, then there’s a very high chance that the detector will let you know well in advance about the upcoming law enforcement unit.
If we’re talking about an urban environment, things are not as clear, as there are many buildings that can block the signal. The same applies in the case of mountain areas. What you should do is take a look at the details provided by the manufacturer.
Q: Do radar detectors work in any weather?
The weather can have an impact on how well the detector picks up a signal. Rain and fog, for instance, can slightly decrease its performance, so that’s something to be aware of. However, the more important question here is whether the unit itself can last during tough weather conditions.
Of course, the answer depends on its construction, so if you know that you are going to ride a lot and in all types of weather, then you should definitely choose a unit that can withstand any conditions and that is water and weatherproof.
If you have any particular questions on this matter, then the right approach would be to contact the seller or the manufacturer and get the necessary answers. If you live in an area where rough outdoor conditions are the norm, then you want to make sure that the radar detector you choose can remain reliable at all times.
Escort is a well-known brand among riders and drivers, given that the company produces high-quality devices that include the latest technology, as well as innovative designs. In fact, Escort has been one of the industry’s leading companies in terms of performance for over 40 years, and the company designed what is known as a premium driving experience.
The patented detection technology it offers, as well as the Escort Live app, both work toward empowering millions of riders and drivers to have real-time alerts and, thus, a smooth driving experience. Of course, getting such a device also means that you will save a lot of money that you might otherwise spend on tickets, and this is always a good idea.
One of the reasons for which you should consider this brand is that it’s among the top picks among the best radar detector brands. The fact that the devices offered ensure top performance means that you will be able to rely on yours without too much difficulty.
Moreover, the brand also offers the new Escort M1 dash cam that can be seamlessly integrated with the brand’s radar system for a complete driving experience. This means that you will be able to edit and share videos using your smartphone, making this a highly convenient solution.
If you were to ask many experienced riders what brand they would recommend in order to choose a very good radar detector, ADAPTIV Technologies would be one of the first answers you would hear. The company is well-known for offering high-quality and reliable devices that are going to make your riding experience a lot smoother.
We know that it’s important to be able to focus on the road ahead, and so does this brand. That’s why its products include the latest technology, as well as innovative functionalities and design, which enable the user to enjoy a riding experience free of any worries. The range of these radar detectors is a very useful one, given that it ensures enough response time on your part.
Furthermore, these units are also easy to use, so the user can operate them without any worry and without having to remove the riding gloves in case any setting needs to be changed. The fact that the radar detectors offered by ADAPTIV Technologies have won awards for their performance says a lot about how effective they can be.
That’s why, if you are looking for a device that you can truly rely on, you can safely give these a try.
One of the first things you should know about TPX radar detectors is that they are designed keeping the rider’s needs in mind. The result is a top-performing device that has every chance of becoming a user’s most trusted partner in avoiding getting speeding tickets. The innovative technology these units include allows them to detect both radar and laser bands used by police units.
Another aspect most users appreciate is the fact that these devices are easy to use, meaning that the rider doesn’t have to make a very big effort in case some settings need to be slightly adapted. Given that radar detectors have to be used in all sorts of weather conditions, you may also want to know that TPX units are resistant to shocks, vibrations, and all sorts of elements.
As you can imagine, you won’t have any difficulties relying on such a radar detector, if you decide to purchase it and see how it works for your needs. TPX models come with multiple other functionalities that are included to make the rider’s life a lot easier, including an LCD that can be viewed from all positions, as well as an adjustable LED visual alert.