I bought a Beltronics STi one year ago. I live in Ontario, or Spectre hell, and in that province the STi has served me well. I have received laser alerts, and sure enough there was laser. I have received instant-on K alerts (one I believe I wrote here about a year ago) and sure enough, a mile down the road through a fog bank there was the LEO.
I have always wondered why I got few Ka alerts, and I'm concerned about what I read here about 33.8. I guess that's the likely reason why I have received so few alerts. Having said that Ka is not the predominant radar with the Ontario police in my experience, although it is common. Sti alerts flawlessly to K and X band radar. And it clearly cannot be detected by Spectre. It is a good detector. But the following trip was disturbing for me because I believe I have confirmed for myself at least what GOL and others have proven.
This summer I went to the northeastern U.S. (NY, MA, CT, NH, VT etc.) and got a real eye opener. Armed with my STi I ran through NY state. My first alert was Ka band, a mobile state trooper in the westbound lanes of the thruway. I picked him up about 1/8 mile ahead but thought perhaps a hill, or mobile instant-on was at fault for the late warning.
After passing two troopers in the centre median and getting no alerts I reasoned that they likely didn't have their radar on. But the fourth trooper startled me. He was in a construction site facing eastbound, the same direction I was heading. I came over the hill to discover the construction, no big deal but my STi didn't alert to Ka band until I was less than 150 feet from the LEO. When I passed him he had his hands behind his head, no instant-on, just a trooper with his radar on and me with a paltry 150 foot warning. He was in clear sight when my STi went off. Not good.
I noticed another strange pattern: most of the police alerts I got in the U.S. were Ka, the rest were K or X-band door openers. Not one of the Ka alerts came until I was in clear sight of the LEO and several the STi didn't alert me to at all. I drove past at least 5 police cars with the lights on, the car pulled over and no warning. One could make the argument that they were all using I/O, but that's pretty far fetched.
With the STi I have received three lidar warnings in the last year. Every time there was lidar the STi went off. I have been shot countless times with K. Only once did I experience Ka. I passed several cars in Canada that did not set the STi off.
I came back from a good trip thinking and wondering about the GOL test. At first I thought they were anomalies. Now I see there is more evidence to support their findings. 33.8 is becoming the popular band for police. But I can tell you once the OPP get wind of this it will be THE most popular band in Ontario.
So, one year later the STi is completely undetectable - the #1 concern for me. It works well on K, X, and lidar. But now I know why I haven't received many Ka warnings. I'm confident Beltronics can fix the problem. But for any trips to the U.S. I might drop the cash for a V1 or an X50.