Balance........who's got it?
Do you want an ultra quite detector (9500ix) or cutting edge sensitivity (RedLine) riding shotgun in the cockpit? My choice would be simple except that either is missing a critical ingredient........FAST response times!
Knowing that my detector can be rendered completely ineffective with brief IO shots (Quick Trigger) is not something that sits well with me.
So what choices are left.......easy......the Valentine One. It's a perenial top performer in GOL range tests and known to have very good response times vs. Ka and Excellent reaction time to K-Band.
So I got me one, along with all the bells and whistles (remote dispaly & remote audio adapter). The quality of the detector and it's associated accessories are TOP NOTCH!
Now........let it be known that prior to purchasing the V1 I had already picked up a refurbed Bel RX65(S7 antenna) to check out the exclusive "USA" mode feature (Ka option) available only on the RX65. I was curious to see if it behaved similar to the Band Segmentation and RDR options on the uber expensive M3 remote (STi-R Plus) which transform that detector into perhaps the qickest responding RD on the planet to Ka quick triggers. Happily, USA mode does EXACTLY that........at least on the Refurbed S7 models! Bench testing proved that the RX65 is even quicker than the V1 vs. Ka quick triggers and sufficiently fast vs. K-Band to eliminate any anxiety over missing an Instant On shot of radar.
But even so, I'm looking for the best combination of response time AND range in an affordable windshield mount. So the Valentine was hired in hopes it had the best of both worlds.
Well........after several weeks of tooling around with the V1 my impressions are that the K-Band performance was certainly what I would expect.......excellent! Although K-Band has become rare in my area, it did an admirable job of sniffing out the few LEOs I encountered while running it. It alerts to all the known K-Band sources that my Escort/Bels routinely pick up, more often than not beating them by a second or two.....and less often trailing by a small margin. Only the RedLine can whop it routinely.
Ka is a different story. My impressions after two weeks is that it varies from Excellent to WTF versus the 34.7 Stalkers that saturate my area. On axis detection is excellent and even most around the bend encounters were very good........but some extreme off axis detections were SCARY making me wonder! So I had plans of doing some comparisons with the RX65 when the oppurtunity presented itself. Today was that day! Only I didn't expect it........on my way to work this morning I ran into several Troopers and one Sheriff putting on a speed enforcement clinic with their 34.7 Stalkers!
So it quickly became a vacation day.
Unfortunately, I didn't have the camera with me. I don't think it mattered much as my 7 minute record time would not have sufficed for the 90 minutes of repeated runs against my unwitting assistents in this test/comparison.
I will admit.......I broke cardinal rule number one and started by running both detectors together simultaneously.
The results were consistent, the RX65 was edging out the V1 on EVERY pass but one........both heading into the beam as well as forward facing. I will say that both detectors were doing a fantastic job considering the sweeping curves and small hills.......averaging well over .5 miles on each pass.
Now, I would not have bothered doing this write up if that was the only comparison (due to the suspect methods used). But the radar gods smiled upon me and delivered unto me a Sheriff sitting stationary with both antennas on his DSRx2 blairing away.....on the shoulder of a sweeping curve. And those same patrons who watch over us kept that dude there for over 30 minutes! So after several passes in each direction with the RX65 and V1 running in tandem I was able to get in TWO solo runs in each direction with only one detector running at a time. The results were the SAME! In fact, I did note that my best detections with either detector was when they were running together. NOTE: the RX65 had a solid 2-3 second advantage on all four passes when running one detector at a time.
Conclusion. Today was a good day for the V1......no scary close alerts.....but an even better day for the RX65! I honestly did not think it would hang with the V1 unless it was extreme off-axis Ka and was shocked when it consistently outperformed it!
PS. That Sheriff is certainly telling his buds about the Kook in the white car that kept driving past him this morning.
In fact, I think he only stayed there as long as he did to see how many more times I'd do it!