Remote RD Testing, Dec 2016: Stinger VIP, Net Radar, Radenso HD+, 9500ci, Plus, O

Vortex

Making Videos
Observer
Advanced User
Lifetime Premium Member
Joined
Jul 19, 2012
Messages
21,164
Reaction score
41,413
Location
Washington State
This week @Dukes and I met up to do some remote radar detector testing. We had at least two of all the top remote RD's and tested them on 33.8, 34.7, 35.5, and K band. We also used two different courses over three days so it was a LOT of time spent testing. :) It's a test I've been wanting to do for a while now so a big THANK YOU to everyone who contributed equipment and helped make this test happen!

Here's my video going over the event:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IPEZgisYJJQ

If you'd prefer to read over things and jump right into the results, take a look below. :)

Radar Detectors:

-Stinger VIP 4.0.26 (@Dukes)
-Stinger VIP 4.0.26 (@Vortex, supplied by Stinger HQ)
-Net Radar 1 (@Vortex, supplied by @BestRadarDetectors, hand-soldered preproduction unit)
-Net Radar 2 (@Vortex, supplied by @BestRadarDetectors, production unit)
-Radenso HD+ connected to Bel 975 (@Vortex, supplied by @Hügel66)
-Radenso HD+ (supplied by @inbe2893)
-9500ci (@Dukes, standalone unit)
-STi-R Plus (@mikedotd, standalone unit)
-STi-R O (@Dukes, head plugged into Plus CPU)

Every detector was running the latest public firmware, including the Stinger with the new 4.0.26 that was just released a few days ago. (Great timing!)

Let's take a look at all the detectors mounted on @Dukes' truck which is amazing for remote testing...

Remotes mounted on Dukes truck.jpg

Radar Guns:

33.8: MPH Bee III (@Vortex)
34.7: Stalker II (@Vortex)
35.5: Decatur Genesis II Select (@ykobzar2)
K Band: Decatur Genesis II Select (@ykobzar2)

Test Course 1:

The first course we used was the same one I've used in previous tests. It's worked great before, but the past few times I've used it, including this week, I didn't see any separation between detectors. Most every detector maxed out the course and alerted within a few feet of one another. I really want separation between detectors, but at the same time, I think it's great to point out that every detector here can do an excellent job even in challenging conditions. We tested the Stinger, 9500ci, and Net Radar for comparison purposes. When I tried making things a little tougher for the detectors, they all still alerted right around at the same points. We tried switching radar guns to see if things varied between frequencies and things were all still similar... at least until we got to K band.

The Stinger was doing great at first and then started to turn in terrible detections. Alert distances dropped from 2700 feet (maxing out the course) to just 200-400 feet (the kill zone), sometimes even not going off at all even as we drove past the radar gun. Crazy... Clearly something was wrong. When we got home, we contacted Stinger, talked to them on the phone for a good half hour, and sent them logs from the detector so that they could see what was going on. They said it sounded like an issue with starting up the detector near a strong radar source which was triggering the in-car BSM filter. The detector can filter out false alerts if your own car has a BSM system and even though we had that filter turned off, there was an issue with filtering out signals if you start near a strong signal, drive away from it, and then turn around and drive back towards it. It's not something you'd encounter much in practice, but it was a bug nonetheless that impacted our testing. Armed with the information and logs we sent them which lets them see exactly what was going on and why, they worked on a firmware update while we slept (they're overseas in the Netherlands), and in the morning they sent us an updated beta firmware with a fix for the bug. We tested it out and it looks like it fixed that issue! That's AMAZING service and I'm truly impressed by the VIP's logging capabilities and what their engineers can do with it... This firmware, 4.0.32, has since been made available. I don't know if performance with .32 is any better than .26 we tested with, but Stinger did confirm that it shouldn't be worse.
Anyways, the next day we went off to another test course and here's where I'm gonna start sharing the results.

Test Course 2:

This test course was about 2,000 feet long. It's a tree-filled road with a hill to climb up and a radar gun hiding right around a bend.

Course Map.jpg

and here's a quick video of us driving the test course at the start so you can see it as well. At the end you'll also see the radar guns we tested with. ;)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J9DyV_MUMFA

Initially we had the radar guns in my car but every detector was maxing out the course. To fix this, we put the radar guns antennas on a tripod, the counting units in a protective waterproof box, and moved them farther back behind the bend.

Radar guns.jpg

Now for the results. :)

34.7:

34.7 Results.jpg

34.7 we ran first and it got me really excited. The Stinger VIP, HD+, and 9500ci managed to alert right around the start of the course where we were seeing fringe detections. Not every detector could alert there or even do it every time, but it was a weak signal enough to max out the course.

Generally detectors would alert as we were cresting the hill or driving on top of it.

Sometimes detectors would have a not so great run. You'll see some from the Stinger, O, and Net Radar, for example. I don't know why this occurred. It wasn't due to traffic which was our initial guess. Traffic was minimal but runs like this would happen with and without traffic so it's not due to that. We ran each detector 3 times to account for run-to-run variance and you'll see all 3 runs posted above.

33.8:

33.8 Results.jpg

33.8 was next. No detectors managed to max out the course with those fringe detections this time, but we had a strong showing by the wirebonded M3's and HD+. The Stinger managed to get some really strong runs, as well as a number of less strong ones. It also had one surprisingly short run. Not sure what's up with that. The STi-R Plus and Net Radar were a bit under the top dogs, but this is some stiff competition and even the shorter runs provided plenty of time for a save.

35.5:

35.5 Results.jpg

On 35.5, the wirebonded M3's again stole the show. Just past the fringe detection areas though, every detector was able to alert driving up the hill or as we crested it and turn in strong runs. There were some weaker runs by the Stinger and Net Radar, but again even those runs gave plenty of warning time for a save.

K Band:

For K band there are more options... you can run the detectors unfiltered for max performance (which almost no one does due to BSM issues), some detectors have BSM filtering options, some have TSR filters, etc. so we've got a number of different charts to show different things on K band. Because there were so many filtering options for each detector, we only ran each detector twice with each filtering configuration to save time.

K Band, Filters Off:

Now first off, let's look at raw sensitivity with every detector running with filters disabled.

K band testing filters off.jpg

Every detector managed a strong, long distance showing here. M3's, HD+, Net Radar, Stinger.. everyone. There were some fringe detections and some climbing the hill. You'll see some really poor detections with the Stinger that were in the 700 ft. range, and this is the bug I was referring to that Stinger has fixed with the 4.0.32 firmware so those runs no longer apply. :)

K Band, BSM Filters:

Some detectors like the Net Radar offer BSM filtering options. The HD+ has TSR Low. The M3's have TSR. The Stinger we switched to Regular mode (though people are reporting great results with QT mode). We ran every detector in Highway mode and didn't bother testing Auto/City modes for the sake of time, plus because speed-based filters can vary up the results more.

K band testing BSM filter on.jpg

A variety of results with each detector. Most every detector had a crazy long distance run and a normal run. The HD+ did excellent with TSR Low.. oddly even better than with TSR Off. I don't know what's up with that, but the results are the results. :) The O was not included because it doesn't have TSR.

K Band, Full Filtering / TSR:

Switching to full filtering with the traffic filter on the Net Radar, TSR High on the HD+, still TSR for the M3's and Regular mode for the Stinger, here's how that looks.

K band testing TSR Filter on.jpg

As usual, a few detectors managed extra long range detections and most alerted as we drove up or crested the main hill.

Effective BSM filtering is arguably more important than all out range. The Stinger (with 4.x.x firmware) and Net Radar are two of very best. The HD+ is pretty good too and the M3's not so much. That said, if you're curious about range, looks like they can all do a fine job. Let's take a look at how each detector looks individually if we look at one detector at a time with different K band filtering settings.

Stinger VIP on K band:

Stinger K band.jpg

We didn't do a whole bunch of testing with the Stinger on K band. Once we realized it was able to max out the course even in Regular Mode (most aggressive filtering option), we were pretty satisfied with just the two runs from Dukes' VIP. Those short detections are from the now fixed bug I talked about earlier.

Net Radar on K band:

Net Radar K band.jpg

With the Net Radar what I was wondering is how much (if any) the BSM or TSR filters negatively impacts range. In this test it doesn't look like it was a big deal. It managed a great job even with that filters enabled which is impressive. I have tested it previously and found that TSR created a pretty big range hit, but the antennas have since been updated to address this. The BSM filter looks like there's not much of a performance penalty. TSR does introduce some as expected, but on this course at least, it's still plenty managable.

Radenso HD+ on K band:

Hd+ K band.jpg

This one was really interesting... The HD+ managed some outstanding detections even with TSR Low or High enabled, even managing to sometimes outrange the detector with TSR Off. Go figure... Good job Radenso!

M3's on K band:

M3 K band.jpg

These results are a little more expected. The M3 does better with TSR Off than On. The 9500ci still managed a detection better with the filter on than off, but overall these are in line with expectations.

Testing Conditions & Traffic:

Finally, commenting on the weather conditions and traffic. We lucked out with good weather for the second and third days of testing on the main course. No rain, sunny/cloudy skies, and cold. 36 degrees the first day and 29 the second. Traffic was light but there was a little bit. Fortunately less than on the first course. Sometimes a car would pull out in front of us or a UPS truck would stop in the road ahead of us, but curiously it didn't seem to impact results. Nevertheless, I do want to mention it because it is an uncontrolled variable.

Conclusion:

So how'd things go? Well, excellent! Every detector performed very well. We were able to get some separation between detectors. I would have liked even more separation between detectors, but we tested on two different courses and found that on both courses, every detector did great. I guess that's what happens when you pick higher end detectors. :) We had curves, hills, radar guns hiding around bends... tricky situations and yet these detectors all did awesome. I was hoping for more definitive and clear conclusions as to which ones were "better" than others, I gotta admit. ;)

The Stinger dominated on 34.7. I'd like to see that be the case across the board. The M3's were solid, consistently being at the top of the pack, especially on Ka. The HD+ was an excellent performer and I'd run it over the O around here since I see primarily 33.8. The Net Radar generally didn't lead the pack yet it achieved the longest run of the day (K band with BSM on).

There was some run-to-run variation and yet even in the "worse" runs, the detectors still gave plenty of time in practice. I'm sure other courses would illustrate other aspects of these detectors, but after running multiple copies of each detector against all the main radar sources you'll see in practice (other than X band which is only in a few places), it seems like any one of these detectors would be a good choice so if choosing between these detectors, you'll definitely want to consider other attributes like BSM filtering effectiveness, how the lockouts work, price, how automatic they are, price, and all the other attributes as well.

A big big thank you to everyone who supplied gear and especially to @Dukes for coming down and helping with this test! This is all possible thanks to you guys. :)
 

System

PSL ÷ 2
Advanced User
Premium Member
Joined
Jun 12, 2016
Messages
5,330
Reaction score
7,075
Location
Alberta
Surprising results. Kudos to both of you for taking the time to do this!
 

NPark

-NNJCTG- Rollin', windows down, music up
Advanced User
Premium Member
Joined
Nov 10, 2015
Messages
6,644
Reaction score
6,632
Location
Northern NJ
Awesome! Thanks to both of you guys for the tests!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

ThreePedals6.2

Motor Head
Moderator
Advanced User
Premium Member
Joined
Dec 23, 2015
Messages
2,115
Reaction score
3,355
nice guys ..Great test, and thx for your time getting this done..shows some great results by most .!..
 

HotRodEV

Ih8w8ing
Advanced User
Premium Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2016
Messages
1,684
Reaction score
2,449
Location
ATL
Been waiting with bated breath for these results!

I'll be poring over these results for a while but it looks like the HD+ put up a good showing...

Thanks for your dedication and diligence guys!!!
 
Last edited:

BestRadarDetectors

Premium RDF Member
Advanced User
Premium Member
Manufacturer/Vendor
Joined
Oct 17, 2011
Messages
12,315
Reaction score
28,096
Net Radar was not designed to be the absolute best performance detector but it was designed to be a very good performing detector and the best value for the money. At $499.95 for the Radar Add-On Package for the ALP its good to see it can keep up with units costing much more money. Thanks for taking your time to do the comparison test.
 

Jag42

USA TMG a-15 Dealer & Rep & TXCTG Rd tester
Advanced User
Premium Member
Manufacturer/Vendor
Joined
Jun 13, 2011
Messages
9,079
Reaction score
17,470
Nice job testing fellas ! Having those WTF happened encounters, is what is interesting in testing. HD+ is pretty impressive vs Stinger.
 
Last edited:

wirelessandy

It's a very exciting time
Advanced User
Premium Member
Joined
Feb 13, 2014
Messages
1,975
Reaction score
2,523
Location
SF Bay Area, CA
Amazing that we have so many choices.

The Radenso HD is looking good! Now I'm excited at the prospect of the dual version!
 

Andrew21

"All Blade, All The Time"
Administrator
Advanced User
Lifetime Premium Member
Joined
Oct 31, 2010
Messages
11,398
Reaction score
7,508
Location
Long Island
Thank you for the results guys. Good job!!!!!!!!!
 

Vette6893

Premium RDF Member
Advanced User
Premium Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2011
Messages
734
Reaction score
225
Location
South Western Connecticut
Really impressed with the performance across the board. We have more options than ever and at a pretty large price range.
Thanks for doing this. I'm amazed at how quickly you did the tests and published the results. A lot of thought went into this and we all can't thank you enough.
 

Vortex

Making Videos
Observer
Advanced User
Lifetime Premium Member
Joined
Jul 19, 2012
Messages
21,164
Reaction score
41,413
Location
Washington State
Really impressed with the performance across the board. We have more options than ever and at a pretty large price range.
Thanks for doing this. I'm amazed at how quickly you did the tests and published the results. A lot of thought went into this and we all can't thank you enough.
haha you can thank Dukes for that. He's got this OBD-II distance measurement tool that's practically a gift from the heavens when it comes to RD testing. :p Plug it into your vehicle, start driving, press a button when the RD goes off to start measuring distance, press the button again once you get to another point (ie. end of course, known location where every detector will have gone off already, etc.), and BAM, there's your distance! Log all the distances, make a chart in Excel, and there's your charts! Super easy!

Beats the pants off of trying to figure stuff out with dashcam footage and it's better than using phone apps which we've found to be inaccurate and difficult to translate into actual distances once you get the points saved.

Testing itself takes a ton of work and energy and it's sooo nice having a way to make the results creation process be quick and easy. That thing is pricey, but boy is it a blessing to have!
 

hiddencam

Premium RDF Member
Advanced User
Premium Member
Joined
Oct 29, 2010
Messages
11,531
Reaction score
24,924
Amazing job fellas! Serious effort and you are both to be commended.
 

KCsilverado

PSL +5
Intermediate User
Joined
Jan 18, 2013
Messages
611
Reaction score
766
Location
Kansas City Area
Been really interested to see the results! Great work guys! Thank you for talking the time, energy and money to share this with the community!!!
 

wirelessandy

It's a very exciting time
Advanced User
Premium Member
Joined
Feb 13, 2014
Messages
1,975
Reaction score
2,523
Location
SF Bay Area, CA
Last edited:

NPark

-NNJCTG- Rollin', windows down, music up
Advanced User
Premium Member
Joined
Nov 10, 2015
Messages
6,644
Reaction score
6,632
Location
Northern NJ
HD plus is killing it! Glad this detector was there for the tests.
 

inbe2893

PSL
Advanced User
Joined
Feb 8, 2016
Messages
1,217
Reaction score
1,001
Wow, just wow! Glad to see that HD+ perform like it did. I may start running it with k band and see how it compares to my v1.

Needless to say, thank you so much for taking the time, money, and effort to run a test like this. This shows pretty clearly the performance of all the remote detectors we have and we can see that it really comes down to your preferences and what bands are being used on your area as all of them are giving more than enough warning.

Thank you you two for putting up this test. We are all really lucky to have you here!
 

HotRodEV

Ih8w8ing
Advanced User
Premium Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2016
Messages
1,684
Reaction score
2,449
Location
ATL
[MENTION=11250]inbe2893[/MENTION], hang on to that HD+! It looks like you've got a hot one!!
 
Last edited:

omgboost

Left Lane Hog
Advanced User
Lifetime Premium Member
Joined
Oct 27, 2014
Messages
3,587
Reaction score
3,947
Location
Forced Induction Land
Thanks Vortex and Dukes for your time and testing. This really helps with making my HD+ a good buy! :thumbsup:
 

Discord Server

Latest threads

Latest posts

Forum statistics

Threads
77,605
Messages
1,182,594
Members
19,850
Latest member
Tin888is
Top