TXCTG - Mt Calm RDD and K-band Testing 03-12-2017 (1 Viewer)

Brainstorm69

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[HR][/HR]INTRO

Well, we finally got the weather to cooperate so we could go test out the Spectre Elite that @Hügel66 generously loaned to us. Thanks, Hugel66! We’ve been waiting for a couple of weeks to get some RDD testing down with this, so we were pretty excited. We also wanted to do some testing of the current detectors we have against K-band. So we headed to Waco, along with our newest participant in TXCTG testing, @Deacon! As always, it’s great to meet other members in person and have another set of eyes, ears, and hands to help out in the testing!

[HR][/HR]THE DETECTORS

American Radar AR-9970BT - (BS69)
Beltronics Magnum WB - (Jag 42)
Beltronics Magnum WB - (BS69)
Beltronics Magnum PK - (BS69)
Cobra 9200BT - (Jag 42)
Cobra Rad 450 - (@gbriggs82 - thanks!)
Radenso Pro - (Jag42)
Radenso Pro SE - (Jag42)
Radenso XP - (Jag42)
Radenso XP #1 - (BS69)
Radenso XP #2 - (BS69)
Escort Max 360 - (BS69)
Escort Redline - (Jag42)
Escort Redline - (BS69)
Uniden DFR6 - (Jag24)
Uniden LRD450 - (BS69)
Uniden LRD950 #2 - (BS69)
Uniden LRD950 #1 - (BS69)
Valentine V1 - (BS69)
Valentine V1 - (Deacon)
Whistler CR93 ( @Vortex - thanks!)

[HR][/HR]
THE TOOLS

Spectre Elite RDD @Hügel66– thanks!)
MPH Python II FS K-band (BS69)
Radios (that Deacon brought so we could talk while we tested - worked great!)
Leupold RX-1 range finder (also brought by Deacon, also worked out great for RDD testing)

[HR][/HR]
THE COURSES


We started out at our old favorite, the Pioneer Parkway Course, to test the detectors against the Spectre Elite. Unfortunately the sheriffs had other ideas. As we were parked in our normal spot by a small pumping station, I suddenly got a Ka alert from behind me (I happened to have a V1 plugged at the time) as I sat in my car, ready to put up various detectors for testing. As I looked into my rear view mirror, I saw a black and gold Chevy Tahoe coming around the curve at the SE end of the course. As he passed me by, I was surprised by another one right behind him.

Well, we see one on the course every once in a while, so I didn’t think all that much about it. Plus, I had put my front license plate on the day before, so I wasn’t worried about one of them giving me “s” about that. Anyway, we continued with some testing and not more than 15 or 20 minutes later, one of them comes driving by again as Jag42 and Deacon are down on the other end of the course on the side of the road, getting ready to turn around. They do, and come driving towards me and I’m watching the LEO pass them. And then I see the LEO hit his brakes and actually whip a U-turn and start coming back my way. I start throwing gear into my bag thinking this LEO is going to come pull up next to me and ask what’s going on. The LEO gets to the cross roads about 200 yards away, and turns off on the road. One that we’ve seen him go down before and then come back. We decided it was best to meet up at the nearby gas station and take a break while we let LEO patrol around and see that we were gone.

Once at the gas station, we decided it was likely that the LEO would be patrolling the area for a while, so we decided to drive out to another road (FM 939) I had scouted out off the Mt Calm Course. When we got there, we found a spot we thought would work and proceeded with the RDD testing (see picture from Google Maps below).

When it came time to K-band test, we thought we would use Highway 31 (as we had in the past), but try to position the radar differently, and see if we could get some better range with on-axis testing than what we got with the previous Ka testing. But it was not to be. We tried also using Highway 84 for as a course, but it also turned out to be terrain limited, and didn’t look like it would yield good separation. Now it was starting to get late in the afternoon, so we decided to point the gun down 31 back toward Waco. We were concerned about the not being enough road, and sure enough, our fears were confirmed. We had everything alerting at around the same place at around 5200 meters. It was a fairly impressive detection distance (nearly 3.25 miles), but no separation. So we turned to the old stand-by – we angled the gun about 35* off the highway. This worked well, and we were able to get the range down while achieving some decent separation between the detectors. By now it was closing in on 5:00pm, so unfortunately, we only had time for single runs by each detector.

FM 939 Course.jpg

Waco Pioneer Pkwy Course.jpg

Mt Calm Course.jpg

[HR][/HR]
RESULTS


  • I’m posting both the RDD results from FM 939, as well as the limited results we got from Pioneer Parkway.
  • First table for each test is sorted by detector so you can quickly zero in on a specific detector if you so desire.
  • Second table for each test is ranked ordered from first to last with range, delta from the leader and percentage of the leader.
  • No graph for the RDD results – it didn’t really work as the scale is all messed up due to the Whistler results, and the negative numbers screwed up deltas.
  • Graph for K-band testing is ranked ordered from first to last with range, delta from the leader and percentage of the leader.
  • All tables and graphs are color coded by detector.
  • Again, we unfortunately only had time for one run for each detector (although we had more than one unit of some detectors and on an exception basis, did do multiple run for a couple of detectors), so if a detector got bit by a bad run, well that’s the real world sometimes.

RDD Testing

TXTCG FM 939 RDD Table (by Detector) 2017-03-12.jpg

TXTCG FM 939 RDD Table (by Rank) 2017-03-12.jpg

TXTCG Pioneer RDD Table (by Detector) 2017-03-12.jpg

TXTCG Pioneer RDD Table (by Rank) 2017-03-12.jpg

RDD Commentary


  • We tried to find a relatively flat, straight road for this first testing using the Spectre Elite. The Pioneer parkway Course was probably better than FM 939 in that regard, but sometimes circumstances (or LEOs) change the best laid plans of mice and men.
  • We decided on a test methodology where I sat in a stationary car changing detectors, and Jag42 and Deacon drove Jag42’s car with the Spectre. If we test again with the RDD in the future, we’ll make the Spectre stationary, and drive a car with the detectors at it.
  • Both the Spectre and the RDs were mounted somewhat low on the windshield.
  • The M3s lived up to their stealth reputation.
  • The RPSE was stealth on a driveby, but doing a “crawl test” it was detectable at 36 feet.
  • The high end Unidens did well, testing at 27 feet or less. Interestingly, the LRD950 with DFR fw did better than my other LRD950 with LRD950 fw.
  • Hey, a Cobra that isn’t very leaky! The 9200BT did quite well, especially considering Cobra’s past reputation. The Rad 450, OTOH, did pretty poorly at over 1000 feet from the front, and even 100 feet from behind (we did just a few tests on the poorer detectors from behind, also).
  • The XP did slightly worse than the Unidens, which is interesting since they are based on the same basic platform
  • The Uniden LRD450 wasn't too bad, at a little over a 100 feet.
  • The Max 360 showed up at 120 feet from the front, and a little over 50 from behind. Not horrible.
  • I was expecting worse from the American Radar, but 177 feet wasn’t terrible. It is however, getting to a point where a detection is likely.
  • The V1 was over 200 feet from both the front and the back, so not very stealthy. But it did better than some of the old youtube videos showed. Not sure if it’s newer V1 hardware making a difference, or what.
  • The RX65 and Radenso Pro were out at nearly 500 feet, which is a long way away.
  • The Whistler CR93 was like a radio tower, spewing its RF to the world at about 1.2 MILES. If you want to get caught with a detector, this is the one to have, hands down.
  • The results from the limited testing we got done on Pioneer seem roughly consistent with the results from FM 939, although there was some variation. I guess that’s to be expected, just like detection ranges can vary from course to course.

K-band On-Axis Angled 35* Off the Road

TXTCG Mt Calm K-band Table (by Detector) 2017-03-12.jpg

TXTCG Mt Calm K-band Table (by Rank) 2017-03-12.jpg

TXTCG Mt Calm K-band Graph (by Rank) 2017-03-12.jpg

K-band Commentary


  • In general, we had a quite a few good performances on K-band, with the top 2/3 or so of detections coming in at 75% of the leader, or better.
  • The Jag42’s XP managed to take first place, and both of mine were in the 90% of the leader range. Even with top notch filtering, they are quite good on K-band in my experience.
  • The Radenso Pro SE also did well, even with TSR set high. We did somehow manage the anomaly of greater range with TSR set to high than with it set to low. I wouldn’t expect that to happen in most cases. But this was only one run, and anything can happen. We did do one run with the SE with TSR off, just because it has gotten some monster detections with it off in the past. It popped out a an impressive detection that was 109% of the leader.
  • The Max 360 continues to impress with its K-band range. Now if Escort could only get its filtering up to parity with the best.
  • Jag42’s WB Magnum took M3 honors, with my Redline close behind. My WB Magnum did well, but my packaged Magnum slipped a bit, only managing 75% of the leader. Jag’s Redline was in the 90% range.
  • The high end Unidens also did well. All three were in the 90 percent or higher range.
  • The V1 also did very well, landing at 89 percent of the leader.
  • I’m not sure what to make of the American Radar. We actually made three measurements, and they were all over the place at 89%, 50%, and 36%. There is a cell tower by the course that didn’t seem to affect the other detectors, but we’re wondering if the filtering of the AR is so bad that perhaps the 89% detection was from the tower, somehow.
  • The 9200BT did quite respectably, with a couple of runs in the 80-90 percent range. Cobras seem to be kind of weird on K-band, however. They don’t seem to stay locked on the signal. The Rad 450 is really bad at that, but the 9200 had some problem with that also.
  • The LRD450 and RX65 paced each other with respectable detection at about 70 percent of the leader.
  • The Radenso Pro lagged a fair amount in this test, only getting 54% of the leader. But there wasn’t much difference between TSR high and low. We did do a run TSR off, and it actually hit the 88% mark, a considerable difference. But most folks aren’t going to run it naked like that.
  • The Rad 450 didn’t do particularly well at 53%, and like I said, it has a quirky habit of dropping the signal a lot between the initial detection and the source.
  • The Whistler was absolutely abysmal, alerting at 15% of the leader (.3 miles). I have to admit that I’m not very well versed on how to set it up, maybe it was set at max filtering. But even if it was, that result was really poor.

[HR][/HR]
FINAL THOUGHTS

Again, it’s been great to meet and test with other members of the forum! Jag42 and I really enjoyed meeting and testing with Deacon. He’s a good guy, he brought some cool toys, and he helped out a lot with the testing!

It was interesting to test with the Spectre. I know that this testing was of interest to those in the Community who live in or have to worry about traveling through areas where detectors are illegal to use. We’ll be shipping the Spectre to Vortex soon. I’m sure he’ll have some interesting things to report once he gets through doing his own testing with it.

We were also glad to get in some more K-band testing, especially with the new Radenso Pro and Pro SE firmware, US19 beta. Unfortunately, we didn’t have any Pro or Pro SE units that still had US17 on them, but I think you can compare how they did against other detectors in the testing compared to how they have done in the past to get some idea of how the beta firmware works.

I will end with my usual admonishment: This is just one test. And in this case, it was generally only one run per detector, so most detectors did not get the chance to show that their results might have been different on a second run. You need to look at various tests, by various people, at various times, on various courses to try to get to a complete picture of a detector. So make sure to do your research, look at as many tests as you can, and find out as much information as you can.
 
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Jag42

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[MENTION=12732]Deacon[/MENTION] [MENTION=9768]Brainstorm69[/MENTION] As always lots of fun. [MENTION=12732]Deacon[/MENTION] and i were really trying to stay awake,driving back. We arrived in Waco at 10am. We did not get home until after 10pm. [MENTION=12732]Deacon[/MENTION] had a hour drive back home from my house.

[MENTION=394]Hügel66[/MENTION] informed me the newest coming RPSE's will be under 10ft.
 
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Stkrdknmibalz

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Were these RDD tests dead on or at an angle? Meaning that what if a LEO drove by in the opposite lane.

Posted from my Pixel using the RDF mobile app!
 
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Jag42

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We drove straight at the Rd's with the Spectre. They were both the same heigth. We drove by the Rd car as well. The detections were very rare,except Rad450,Whistler and rear antennas of the 360 and V1.
 
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Stkrdknmibalz

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Can we get some footage of the XP

Since K band is making a comeback

Posted from my Pixel using the RDF mobile app!
 

Deacon

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That was a lot of fun, but it was a whole lot more work and time than it seems like it would be when you just read the testing results. It was a real eye-opener on much effort [MENTION=201]Jag42[/MENTION] and [MENTION=9768]Brainstorm69[/MENTION] really do put in. Also, I didn't fully realize the concept of how many individual detectors these guys had in their possession. It's impressive just how they keep track of them all, especially with some being temporary.

The RDD test was super interesting. I've heard of cops in Canadia and Virginia pulling up nose to nose with someone in parking lots and even the side of the road. Now I understand why: if it's not an M3, the detector detector will detect the detector. And an LNA on its own is no guarantee. If a cruiser is sitting on the side of the road, though, quite a few of them wouldn't arouse much interest as they drove by. Unless it's a Whistler CR93, in which case it would arouse interest in the next county, and the FCC may come investigating. The fun part was actually having some random passersby set it wailing on occasion with their detectors :)

I need to remember to bring some ginger pills for next time. There was so much hard accelerating up the highway, then braking and heading to the next turn-around after detection, then accelerating up, then braking and turnaround... ad nauseum, literally, and with much of it spent with my head down glued to the phone measuring GPS waypoint distance. I wasn't car sick, but I was getting closer than I'd prefer to be.
 
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Jag42

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Edwv30

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We drove straight at the Rd's with the Spectre. They were both the same heigth. We drove by the Rd car as well. The detections were very rare,except Rad450,Whistler and rear antennas of the 360 and V1.
Was there any testing with both cars approaching each other but in opposing lanes like what would happen on the real world? Approaching from the side or behind? Thanks for the testing - it looks like a crazy amount of effort went into it.
 

Stkrdknmibalz

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I guess I've gotten lucky...

40ft/13m it's quite far, please post the RDD testing for XP and RPSE :)

I'll be waiting for [MENTION=2404]Vortex[/MENTION] RDD test results

Posted from my Pixel using the RDF mobile app!
 
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Brainstorm69

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Were these RDD tests dead on or at an angle? Meaning that what if a LEO drove by in the opposite lane.

Posted from my Pixel using the RDF mobile app!
Pretty much needed to be head on for a detection. [MENTION=201]Jag42[/MENTION] has all the RDD footage.
 

Deacon

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Yeah, the "axis" of the RDD was very important to ensuring the greatest detection range. [MENTION=201]Jag42[/MENTION] would change the angle of his car or change the angle of the RDD in its mount, and it would pick them up at what we thought was too far. The harsh reality is that the real world isn't made of perfectly straight lines, so you're rolling the dice with most detectors.

And yeah, the Radenso units were both impressive on K, with even the "bad" run being less than a quarter mile from the max. I remember when we turned TSR off on the RPSE just to see what it was like both unfiltered and unlivable, we had to make an extra turnaround because it surprised us by exceeded what had been our normal runs beyond range.

PS That American Radar unit was super annoying and performed poorly, which was really disappointing because it's such a cool concept. Just badly executed.
 
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Brainstorm69

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Was there any testing with both cars approaching each other but in opposing lanes like what would happen on the real world? Approaching from the side or behind? Thanks for the testing - it looks like a crazy amount of effort went into it.
Unfortunately, no testing of both cars driving by each other. We will need to do more testing in the future along those lines. [MENTION=2404]Vortex[/MENTION] will have the Spectre soon. Not sure how he plans to test.
 

Vortex

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Great work with the testing! Some really impressive results by non-M3's yet still showing a difference. That Whistler, wow... Interesting to note the differences when driving fast or slow, almost stew testing. :)
 

Jag42

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Ya, the Spectre is tunnel visioned for head on mostly.
The Spectre was set to the highest sensitivity setting,and the FILTER off. The owners manual recommends half sensitivity or 3:00, for safety. FILTER on is for the super leaky Rd's that leak like the Whistler.
 
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Stkrdknmibalz

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Unfortunately, no testing of both cars driving by each other. We will need to do more testing in the future along those lines. [MENTION=2404]Vortex[/MENTION] will have the Spectre soon. Not sure how he plans to test.
Not sure how close to the XP/LRD950 platform is the NR but it seems to completely miss it.

Then again we should test not guess.

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Unfortunately, no testing of both cars driving by each other. We will need to do more testing in the future along those lines. [MENTION=2404]Vortex[/MENTION] will have the Spectre soon. Not sure how he plans to test.
I don't have the long flat straightaways so I'm really grateful for your testing. Other than the Whistler, I can get by easily on a ~1000 ft test course and that's really good to know.

I plan on doing similar stuff, but focused more on videos to see things like detection range, ramp up quality, and so forth. I'll also be doing remotes too. After testing I want to do some videos driving around with it in practice. So yeah. :)
 

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I don't have the long flat straightaways so I'm really grateful for your testing. Other than the Whistler, I can get by easily on a ~1000 ft test course and that's really good to know.

I plan on doing similar stuff, but focused more on videos to see things like detection range, ramp up quality, and so forth. I'll also be doing remotes too. After testing I want to do some videos driving around with it in practice. So yeah. :)
Be prepared driving it in the city, Me and [MENTION=12732]Deacon[/MENTION] wanted to unplug it,due to nonstop alerts of EVERYTHING through Waco. Even with filter on and low sensitivity,it was making us insane.
 

Deacon

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[MENTION=2404]Vortex[/MENTION] be careful, it's kinda fun to drive around with it, and it might get you distracted :)

That's assuming you can get past its shrill tones. Like [MENTION=201]Jag42[/MENTION] said, it quickly got more annoying with its sensitivity turned up to max than a Redline with no K-band filter.
 
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Stkrdknmibalz

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On the RDD, I'll put it this way, if it were a criminal charge I wouldn't risk it with anything but an M3 or maybe the RPSE and the Unidens/XP. Sitting still, there was a time or two people drove by and set it off. Not cool.
We don't know what Rd they had.

Maybe a Cobra.

Best way is to test it driving by like [MENTION=3989]BestRadarDetectors[/MENTION] test

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