Friday night topic: Radar detector wars

— 7:40 PM on November 9, 2001

As an unreformed speeder, I have been watching with amusement a battle brewing between the big names in the radar detector world. The folks at Passport have been running ads proclaiming their products are superior to the dominating market leader for around 5-10 years now, Valentine One. The Passport ads cite for proof the Passport is better. That site does indeed have a test of high-end radar detectors, including the Valentine One. The site's head honcho, Craig Peterson, rates other detectors well above the V1.

What's not clear from reading the article is which revision of the oft-improved Valentine One tested. Judging by the picture, I don't think they used the latest revision, but I'm not sure. The tone and content of Mr. Peterson's conclusion gives the impression he wasn't even aware of the V1's many upgrades—or perhaps that he was, but he's got some vendetta against the V1:

Still capable of putting up a good show against X and K-band radar and lasers, with its stratospheric price tag, minimal features and quirky ergonomics the V1 is an also-ran compared to modern detectors. Celebrating its tenth birthday next year, making it the oldest model on the market, the V1 is clearly showing its age.
Mike Valentine's, ahem, Tech Reports make things even more interesting. The engineer behind V1 casts doubt on some radar detector tests in one of his reports. Another report shows how to program the V1, "if you really want to." (The V1's lack programmability was one of's complaints.)

Rowr. Catfight.

But who's right?

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