First, this is a great forum and I wish I found this earlier. I’ve been a RD nut for years. I’ve read as many reviews as possible but thought I’d post my questions.
I just got a new ride and hope to keep it for 8 years or so. I currently own a V1 (version 1.8 – a few years old) and 9500i. I was a big V1 fan and it’s saved me multiple times during my drives to home/college. However, I drive mostly in the suburbs of Minneapolis so I switched to the 9500i about 1-2 years ago since I wanted the GPS lockout feature. I’m a BIG fan of that.
This time around, I want to do a professionally installed RD, mostly for aesthetics reasons. I’d like to integrate the display but also want to have the RD off the windshield. Performance is still at the top of the list though.
WHAT I’M CONSIDERING AND QUESTIONS:
My first choice is the Escort 8500ci PLUS but can’t seem to find much info or reviews on it. I’m considering the 8500ci because of its price. $700+$150 for install= $850 installed. It has GPS and a separate display, but how’s the performance? I’ve been reading as many threads as I can and have seen some negative feedback about this unit. Is this a Qi45 with GPS? How does the performance of the Qi45 compare to the 9500ix? Am I wasting my money with the 8500ci?
I know the other options are the 9500ci or the STi-R Plus but those a bit too expensive. I’m already spending more than I hoped to with the 8500ci Plus. I’ve read posts about getting the STi-R for only $200 or so more, can someone tell me where or how? Is the performance really that much better (8500ci vs STi-R)?
I’m not opposed to staying with the V1 or 9500i, but the mount I’d like to use is not compatible with my car. I was looking at the blendmount. Plus, I don’t know if I like how the blendmount would put the radar under the rearview mirror, it seems like it would take away from my visibility and be in my line of sight.
Since I live in MN, I’m really not interested in having the laser shifter since it’s illegal here.
As for the display, I’m considering having radar-mirror.com do a mirror install. But at $400 or so, that’s not cheap. Anyone have a DIY guide for doing that?
How’s the performance of the 8500ci Plus?
Is it the same as a Qi45 but with GPS?
How does the 8500ci compare to the 9500ix in terms of radar and laser performance?
Am I wasting my money with the 8500ci?
I’ve read posts about getting the STi-R for only $200 or so more, can someone tell me where or how?
Is the performance really that much better between the 8500ci vs STi-R?
Is there a DIY guide for installing a remote display into a mirror?
Last random question, I ran my V1 and 9500i side by side and was hit was lidar, the V1 went off but the 9500i did not. Is that because I’m running 2 RD side-by-side? Or is the V1 that much better? They were both on the windshield but the V1 was on the side of the trooper.