Just wanted to give you what i think on the X50 "red" display. I purchased it 1 month ago and noticed that the display with 3 brightness settings(min/med/max) was pretty weak. I'm a bright guy(lol) and noticed at night the red display on max was fine, blending in perfectly along with my 350Z red/orange interior display readouts. I've owned radar detectors for 20 years, and always with a red display.... sure as hell never blue!
The problem is this: max setting during the day was absolutely worthless - on a sunny day with the glare hitting the dashboard and the detector, the display gave a blind readout. You couldn't read it unless you put your face 6 inches in front of it. Call me anal, but that didn't cut the cabbage. After fidgeting with it for a week, i even realized at night, with the min. display readout, it was worthless... unless you had it on med(okay) or max(fine).
I returned it to Belscort two days later, and in the process walked into Best Buy out of curiousity. And there in the back... were both the red and blue X50's. It was a perfectly sunny day, so i asked the BB guy if i could purchase the X50 Blue at the counter, and take it out to see if there was a difference. He checked with the store manager, and he wouldn't allow me to do it... without coming in 5 min's later to return it and having to pay a 15% restocking fee. He told me that the manager said that the X50 Blue's display was 100% brighter than the red display. So i took the plunge and bought it.
That night i hooked it up, noticing how bright the blue display was. I thought it was on max setting, only to find out it was medium(default). I then, along with customizing my other settings, put the display on max. It was so damn bright, it dimly lit up my interior(seats) with the garage lights off!
The next day was sunny, clear skies here in Dallas. I had the display setting on max on the way to work, totally bright blue. I went out at lunch about 2pm when the sun was bearing down, and drove around only to witness how the blue display was perfectly bright and clear with the sun glare coming down on the dash and detector. The X50 Blue was the best choice i could have ever made on a detector. Beautiful bright blue readout when needed. And i sure as hell don't need it to match my interior readouts, total nonsense. That blue looks sweet as hell perched up there above that black dash, right along with the red/orange readouts down below.
And you wonder why the X50 Blue is $40 more than the X50 Red? It's the quality of the LED matrix readout, that's why. The red display is worthless in the sun .... unless you drive in the sun with your face 6 inches in front of it.
To all the future 8500 X50 owners out there, i do not recommend the X50 Red... unless you live in Seattle where it's always cloudy. My old Bel 985 had a brighter red display than the X50 Red...
over n' out