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Summary (Abridged) Report

1. Introduction
2. The Equipment
3. The Drive/Ride
4. Conclusions
5. Credits
6. Useful Links

Full (Unabridged) Report

1. Introduction
2. What's Included
3. Costs
4. Build Quality
5. Display (Video)
6. Alert Volume (Video)
7. Alert Tones (Video)
8. Alert Gradient
9. Alert Muting
10. Size
11. Adhesion
12. Programming (Video)
13. The Drive/Ride
14. Test Day #1
15. Test Day #2
16. Test Day #3
17. Respite
18. Test Day #4
19. Test Day #5
20. Test Day #6
21. Conclusions
22. Epilogue I
23. Epilogue II
24. Credits
25. Useful Links

Radar Detector Review '05
Unabridged Version 

Valentine One Escort 8500 X50 Beltronics RX65

Epilogue  II - 10 FEB 05 -Remaining Questions / Possible Explanations

Valentine One (V1) v1.8 w/ POP2 (Propensity to K [and X] Falsing)

Shortly after we conducted the series of X-band sensitivity tests on the X50, we got to thinking about the propensity of the new Valentine to “false” on both X-band and K-band relative to the both the RX65 and X50 even when they were set to highway mode.

During our real-encounters, we did not see a consistently appreciable difference in quickness to alerting to approaching K-band (or X-band) radar than either of the other radar detectors.  We got to thinking about what would contribute to the increased alerts from the latest Valentine unit and then formulated an idea that we may have been able to confirm in the field.

On 10 Feb 05, we set out to the same X-band source we used to identify the effect that Ka-band enabling had on the Escort 8500 X50.  Once again we made our approach very slowly with both the RX65 and the V1.

The V1 alerted just a little before the RX65.  We immediately stopped our vehicle and then slowly panned the RX65 from about 45 degrees off-axis to the left of our car to about 45 degrees to the right of the vehicle.  At about 30 degrees to the left, the RX65 alerted to X-band.  This suggested to us that there may be more than sheer sensitivity contributing to this phenomenon.

We repeated this test several times which led us to this conclusion: what we may be dealing with is the equivalence of a greater field-of-view of the V1 versus the other radar detectors and not just a sensitivity / filtering issue.

It appears the V1 considers a wider field-of-view, of off-axis weak radar signals as potential radar threats, than do the other radar detectors.  This added ability, may be contributing to the greater alert / falsing rates of both X and K bands.  Since the V1 has two antennae and is able to alert to weak radar from the side this may serve to compound this tendency.

In our opinion, during highway driving, this “extra-wide” field-of-view may not be completely practical as distant radar signals from speed traps farther ahead, tend to come within relatively more narrow fields-of-view, front or rear – of course we are not considering rare legitimate radar side-reflections.

If our analysis is correct, perhaps Valentine would consider developing an operating mode which would selectively narrow, somewhat, their radar detector’s field-of-view to cut-down on the initial alerting to radar sources from the more extreme angles.  This additional mode could behave somewhat like the X-band Advanced Logic mode but with K-band.

Once locked on to any given radar source, the radar detector could alert, as it normally does, to the sides and rear during the passing of the source.  This may be accomplished without actually decreasing sensitivity and / or modifying filtering algorithms.

On the other hand, providing the ability to selectively decrease sensitivity to K-band falsing (like the advanced-logic mode) may result in the same outcome.  In either event, it would be the equivalent of taking an ultra-wide angle lens of 14mm and zooming to a more “normal” 40mm or, at least, bring the behavior more in line with the previous 1.7 version.

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