Stinger VIP 4.4.00

Shanetrain

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Have Stinger removed the ability to downgrade?

If so, then thats very bad news as this firmware can not detect redflex
 

beingaware

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Have Stinger removed the ability to downgrade?

If so, then thats very bad news as this firmware can not detect redflex
Def need Dragons to confirm.

I’m not upgrading if this land mine is confirmed.

I like early 3.x firmware’s too much.

Stinger, I am seriously going to mail this to you.

IMG_7726.jpg
 

Dragons

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I haven't tried yet, I think I have a 4.0 release somewhere around here
 

dinkydi

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dont seem like many have jumped on the testing new FW wagon
 

mikedotd

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I've been running v4.4.00 since Tuesday and it's too soon to tell if things are truly better or worse, but so far things appear to be an improvement over previous versions, at least for the threats I see in the USA (non-low power K/Ka-band radar).

So far the display auto-brightness has continued to work. It's pretty ridiculous that something like that is worth mentioning and note worthy on an expensive radar detector that's been on the market for 4 or 5 years now, but at least for me this has been a major problem with either not being able to read the display during the day or being blinded by it at night.

Initially I was getting a lot of K-band false alerts (BSM) while on the highway near other cars so I turned up all the filtering options: regular scan mode, dynamic sensitivity on, radar sensitivity -2, bsm filtering -1, and enabled the in-car filter. The next day I drove into the city on the busy highway and the VIP was remarkably quiet compared to previous firmware revisions. With the exception of a Honda minivan that also set off my V1, there were no other BSM falses, only falses from stationary sources like automatic door openers that had not been learned by the VIP. While audibly quiet to BSM falses, I frequently saw the yellow "FalseList" display, which IMO is kind of annoying but it does provide an indication that it's filtering out signals it sees.

Later driving home I was wondering why things seemed so much more quiet on this firmware when previously similar settings were always noisy. I wanted to see if dynamic sensitivity (a feature I stopped using after discovering it often added a 2 second delay in alerting) was the "secret sauce" so I disabled that while driving in busy congested city highways and found things were still quiet. Next I power cycled the VIP to try and rule out a bug in settings taking effect after being changed, but things still remained quiet. The usual suspects have punched through though (Acura/Honda and Mazda's).

The next day I raised the radar sensitivity and bsm filtering back to 0 and again, things stayed quiet. Eventually I did start noticing the VIP alerting to some BSM systems from relatively far away so I dropped radar sensitivity down to -1 and after a few days, including a 2 hour round trip highway drive today things still remain nearly "V1" quiet when it comes to BSM falses. Stationary falses are being picked up off-axis much more often than the V1, but this is to be expected. The VIP was also alerting to a parked police car behind the local PD transmitting on K-band, which the V1 had trouble detecting. So for me at least having the in-car filter enabled (a setting I also never used previously) has really improved the BSM filtering on the VIP to the point where it appears (at least at the moment) to be a useful radar detector.

I've also seen some weird auto-learn GPS based lockout behavior where after a few days the VIP finally started to learn to FalseList some new K-band speed signs near my house, but for some reason it'll begin to mute the signal but then start alerting halfway though the zone, then start muting again. I'm not sure if there's something different about the signal that it doesn't like (they are solar powered and do drift) or if something else is going on, but I've had no problem learning these with YaV1.

Tonight I had my first police K-band radar encounter and the VIP beat the V1 by 8 seconds. VIP settings were: regular scan mode, dynamic sensitivity off, radar sensitivity -1, bsm filtering 0, in-car filter on. V1 settings were: TMF2 on, mute rear antenna, no time based muting.


Previously I would see the VIP only alert to police K-band about 50% of the time, FalseListing the signal like a BSM the other times, so I can't really say if they fixed that problem yet as this is only 1 encounter. I guess we'll see.

Also worth noting:
  • K-band alert volume is still ridiculously quieter than Ka-band
  • Touching the screen to mute an alert still often results in a double touch that unmutes the alert
 
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dinkydi

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thx be interesting to see some ozzie users as things are different over here especially in NSW
 

Dragons

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@mikedotd Do you run any incarnation of Stinger laser?
 

te37

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Looks like I should update lol
 

mikedotd

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@mikedotd Do you run any incarnation of Stinger laser?
Not currently. I have a 3 pair setup with square heads that I bought from the former US distributor, but I was never able to get satisfactory results with them on my car so I went back to ALP.

I still have the laser portion and figure someday I'll try them on my project car once it's on the road again.

Incidentally I'm now 2 for 2 with the Stinger VIP alerting to police K-band radar, and had no BSM alerts on my drive in to work today (although it was yellow and falselisting frequently), matching the V1. Locking out the 3 new speed signs on my commute is still an issue, with the VIP initially muting then alerting once closer to the transmitters.
 

Dragons

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Not currently. I have a 3 pair setup with square heads that I bought from the former US distributor, but I was never able to get satisfactory results with them on my car so I went back to ALP.

I still have the laser portion and figure someday I'll try them on my project car once it's on the road again.

Incidentally I'm now 2 for 2 with the Stinger VIP alerting to police K-band radar, and had no BSM alerts on my drive in to work today (although it was yellow and falselisting frequently), matching the V1. Locking out the 3 new speed signs on my commute is still an issue, with the VIP initially muting then alerting once closer to the transmitters.
Did you have a LAB-14 or LAB-13? I found results pretty unacceptable at first too, alignment was very tricky but after mucking with it everyday for a couple of weeks I got it right, while its been a while since I last tested everytime I have tested I jammed all guns available, but no question ALP is more consistent.

Also what was the source of your K-band hits? I've reset/removed false list but honestly can't see any difference in filtering or legit detection, Redflex is as bad as ever.
 

whitex

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dont seem like many have jumped on the testing new FW wagon
Are you surprised? I've yet to see a good reason to update in this thread. Past upgrade experiences have made be VERY gunshy pulling the trigger on any Stinger updates, especially out of warranty.
 

mikedotd

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Did you have a LAB-14 or LAB-13? I found results pretty unacceptable at first too, alignment was very tricky but after mucking with it everyday for a couple of weeks I got it right, while its been a while since I last tested everytime I have tested I jammed all guns available, but no question ALP is more consistent.

Also what was the source of your K-band hits? I've reset/removed false list but honestly can't see any difference in filtering or legit detection, Redflex is as bad as ever.
LAB-14. I'm glad to hear it's possible to get good results, but I was never able to get there on my MK7 Golf R. I'm hoping I can find better results on a different car and with more modern firmware (this was on v4.0.x IIRC).

Both legit radar hits so far have been from police SUV's with onboard K-band radar. The first time was a state police unit approaching from the opposite direction, the second time was a parked unit on the side of the road. These are "normal" power radar units, so they're much easier to detect than the low power stuff you guys are dealing with. The problem I've had since I bought the VIP with v3.3.08UK and onward is that it will falselist filter these police normal strength radar guns like BSM filtering about 50% of the time, never alerting just showing yellow falselist. No other RD on the market has this behavior to these police radar guns, so it basically made the VIP useless to these real threats here.

I'm not convinced they solved that problem yet, 2 runs isn't enough to be positive, but so far so good. And that's been with the in-car filter enabled, which is kind of surprising to me.
 

Bichi

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Have Stinger removed the ability to downgrade?

If so, then thats very bad news as this firmware can not detect redflex
I did some testing and the 4.4.0 in the USB stick is recognized every single time, the previous is not. Maybe incompatibility with antenna HD 6.2.1. Tried to install HD 6.1.1 to try and install 4.2.10 and had no luck.
 

mikedotd

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3 weeks with v4.4.00 and single HD radar antenna.

Settings: regular scan mode, in-car filter on, dynamic sensitivity off, radar sensitivity -2, BSM filtering 0.

The display auto-brightness continues to work.

On the highway the VIP is remarkably quiet to BSM systems, including my own car's system. While I do constantly have a yellow "falselist" whenever there's another car diagonal or behind me due to my own car's BSM system, I have not experienced any punch-throughs from my own car. After 3 weeks of driving with these settings (or radar sensitivity -1 and otherwise the same settings) the VIP has been considerably quieter to BSM falses than my V1 with box muting to mute 24.196+ from Acura/Honda's, the #1 BSM source I see. Many Honda's that are setting off my V1 are falselisted by the VIP. Remarkably, the #2 BSM problem brand Mazda that's in the 24.129-24.136 range isn't even reported by the VIP, while my V1 alerts (police K-band here is centered on 24.125 and 24.150 so I'm reluctant to box mute this range).

GPS lockouts so far are the only thing I've noticed problems with. New signals take a considerable amount of time (a week+) to finally mute 100% of the time, and the behavior isn't binary like it either alerts or doesn't alert. Instead it will alternate between alerting and not alerting to the same radar source. I suspect they're using small lockout radius's, bearing, signal frequency and strength as part of their learning algorithm, so weather or solar power related signal and frequency drift can cause lockouts not to work reliably. Eventually they do seem to take hold though, it just takes a lot longer than other implementations. This also effects already known stationary falses that drift, at least 1 pharmacy's automatic door near me started alerted again after the temps went up 30F from the recent average. Manual lockouts also seem to be working for me, although I've only used them once for another new stationary radar source that I only encounter once or twice a week that still hadn't been auto-learned completely.

Perhaps most importantly the VIP has properly alerted to police K-band twice now and has been alerting to a parked police car behind my local PD also transmitting K-band without any weirdness. I still need many more true police K-band encounters before I can trust the VIP again, but so far I'm encouraged that this latest update represents a significant improvement for the North American market. Ka-band generally is leaps and bounds ahead of my V1 in terms of range and sensitivity, however I've also had 1 encounter where the VIP alerted about a second after the V1 to a moving police car transmitting on 35.5 approaching me. I think this was a case of the police car making a turn from a side street on to the same road I was on, so the signal "suddenly appeared" and the VIP was just slow to process and finally alert. I've seen this behavior on previous firmware too where the VIP may have extreme range, but slow reactively to a new signal. Overall though it's had the long range and great off-axis detection that you would expect from a remote unit.

This firmware update has made the Stinger VIP live-able for me. Previously I couldn't read the screen during the day due to the auto-brightness not working, and it was constantly falsing to BSM systems so much I was always hitting the mute button or turning off K-band entirely. Now I occasionally hear it go off and look for a Honda or GM near by while my V1 goes off more frequently. I'm really looking forward to seeing if the police K-band issue is truly resolved. There's a chance this might turn out to be a viable RD option again.
 

Vortex

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Thanks for the report @mikedotd!

I just updated and will give it a whirl this evening. I did a quick test with radar sensitivity 0, BSM filtering 0, and it was chattier than my other detectors, so I'll back the settings down to -2 and 0 like you're using and see if that helps. :)
 

mikedotd

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Thanks for the report @mikedotd!

I just updated and will give it a whirl this evening. I did a quick test with radar sensitivity 0, BSM filtering 0, and it was chattier than my other detectors, so I'll back the settings down to -2 and 0 like you're using and see if that helps. :)
FWIW the reason I went with -1 or -2 radar sensitivity was because I would sometimes have a BSM punch-through from my own car when idling in my garage. After going to -1 I haven't seen that happen again. -2 was to try and quiet down a Honda 3 or 4 car lengths ahead, but I didn't notice any improvement.

I'm looking forward to your experience on a car without an in-car BSM system.
 

Vortex

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FWIW the reason I went with -1 or -2 radar sensitivity was because I would sometimes have a BSM punch-through from my own car when idling in my garage. After going to -1 I haven't seen that happen again. -2 was to try and quiet down a Honda 3 or 4 car lengths ahead, but I didn't notice any improvement.

I'm looking forward to your experience on a car without an in-car BSM system.
I drove last night with the maximum filtering settings, -2 radar sensitivity and -1 on the BSM. I got PT's with a Honda and a Mazda.

Have you had any success with the in-car BSM filtering option?
 

mikedotd

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I drove last night with the maximum filtering settings, -2 radar sensitivity and -1 on the BSM. I got PT's with a Honda and a Mazda.

Have you had any success with the in-car BSM filtering option?
Interesting. Yeah, I've been running with in-car BSM filter enabled since day 2, but still had to reduce radar sensitivity to -1 to prevent punch-throughs.

So it sounds like the in-car filter is effecting external BSM systems too. My V1 went off 7 times to Acura/Honda's this morning while driving into the city while the VIP falselisted them.
 

mikedotd

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7 weeks with v4.4.00 and single HD radar antenna.

Settings: regular scan mode, in-car filter on, dynamic sensitivity off, radar sensitivity -2, BSM filtering 0.

Lockouts mostly work, but are very sensitive to frequency drift. There are 3 solar powered speed signs near my house in front of a school that drift between 24.110 - 24.130. The VIP on this firmware continues to have trouble keeping them locked out while YaV1 with a 10MHz drift has only unlocked the area once due to drift. Usually an RD or app will either alert or mute a radar signal; the VIP instead will alternate between alerting and muting a single radar source. I have no idea what criteria they're using to decide whether to "FalseList" a signal or not, but it's not consistent and has annoying behavior.

The in-car BSM filtering generally works well. Typically when I start the car in the garage or in front of something that will reflect the car's own radar signals back towards the antenna, it'll offer a very quiet experience to both it's own BSM system and other car's. This has made driving on the congested highways here a nice experience, while all my other RD's are alerting to various Acura/Honda systems that are common. When I start the car in a parking lot full of automatic door openers and various radar sources, I often find the VIP will begin alerting to it's own BSM system when approaching other cars. After a few minutes of alerting it seems to learn to FalseList the in-car system and quiets down. Again, not a consistent alerting behavior.

Alerting to police K-band radar is now 2 for 3 with the VIP successfully alerting twice and alternating between FalseList and alerting once. Last week while driving through the school zone mentioned earlier the VIP muted the first 24.11x speed sign, then muted the second 24.11x speed sign while a LEO in the same lane with forward facing radar at 24.167 had some one pulled over in front of the second speed sign. As I approached the second speed sign and LEO radar source the VIP's frequency display of the strongest signal transitioned from 24.116 to 24.167 and began alternating between alerting and FalseListing the LEO 24.167 signal. As I drove further away from the LEO and closer to the third 24.11x speed sign in the opposite lane the VIP's alerting behavior became more constant, alerting to the LEO 24.167 signal. As I continued driving past the third speed sign the VIP then switched back to showing the LEO 24.167 as the strongest signal but FalseListed it.

The morning after all my settings were reset to factory default for some reason. After re-creating all my settings I noticed the auto brightness was no longer working, although the following day it did start working again and has since. My lockouts fortunately were not lost.

I only have a front antenna on the VIP, however I'm occasionally seeing the VIP indicate there's an alert with the frequency number and varying signal strength, but with no directional information. Normally all alerts would have a front indication.

Last night I was driving home from the city with some friends and I couldn't mute the VIP from K-band falses. Normally SpeedSense would have muted these as I was below 30MPH but I hadn't acquired a GPS signal yet after leaving an underground parking garage. I touched the screen to mute, and it did turn the alert yellow and indicated that it was muting the alert due to "user" mute request, but the audio notifications kept playing. Out of embarrassment I just turned the VIP off and rolled the dice for the rest of the drive. This morning I mounted my V1 back on the dash and kept the VIP off.

I was cautiously optimistic that Stinger had made some large strides in improving the Stinger VIP's software, but it appears many of the old issues still remain, even if they take time to manifest themselves. As usual, cool hardware, but the software is still lacking.
 

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