Whistler prides themselves on quality radar detectors. I've stated in past reviews that quality is generally driven by price in this industry; this holds only partially true with Whistler. Your lower end radar detectors will intuitively have a much higher frequency of false alerts coupled with less warning time for real alerts; however Whistler has done a very good job at offering radar detection solutions to all segments of the market, no matter your financial situation. The price Whistler products are offered at enables you to get a descent to relatively high end detector for a moderate price.
Beginning with the Whistler XTR-130 radar detector, if you're on a very tight budget this unit will maximize your return. Found anywhere from $35 to $50 you really can't go wrong. If it turns out the radar detector is more limited than you'd like well you spent less than $50 and if you have a tendency to speed it will definitely relieve you of a few tickets and $100s of dollars instantly paying for itself. The unit retains its settings when turned off and you have the ability to disable the X band alerts since those aren't used in many areas you'll be effectively diminishing the amount of false alarms you receive. The range is good for the price and descent in comparison to the rest of the field. I've even seen this thing pick up red light cameras at intersections; the ones that take a picture of your license plate then mail you a ticket, that's a pretty unheard of feature at this units price. There are a few negatives such as programming the unit when you initially receive it can be difficult. False alerts are more prevalent than your higher end models but that's expected with a unit of this price, and the alert volume can be slightly low if you blare music. The aforementioned details lead me to recommend this unit over the rest of the field in a competitive price range.
The Whistler XTR-695 offers the same main benefits with the addition of vg-2 cloaking for only a few dollars more. VG-2 technology senses radar detector detectors that police may use to locate radar detectors and will turn your unit off in essence making you invisible to them. These RDD are really only used in in some states where radar detectors are illegal and I believe in trucking they are illegal for all truckers so this technology would be beneficial to them as well when they enter certain weight stations. The Whistler XTR 690 and 690SE are top of the line XTR models offered by Whistler and still under $150 and $170 respectively if you get them off a non-manufacture website. Manufacture website will charge you bare minimum $200 for the XTR 690 and well over that for the XTR 690SE. These two radar detectors offer total band protection including POP radar with the ability to turn off the detection of certain bands. You will still see a good amount of false alarms with these units, which just seems to be a prevalent XTR model trait. Both radars will serve the purposes of your average driver, someone interested in advanced warning the majority of the time.
Generally cordless radar detectors have certain performance inadequacies due to the way they are created; both the Whistler XTR-185 and Whistler DE1788 are cordless. In order to conserve the battery charge most cordless radar detectors will turn themselves off in millisecond intervals effectively reducing their sensitivity and long range warning ability. Even if you do connect the power cord it won't help as the internal workings of these units are build in a certain fashion that seems to leave the efficacy of them unchanged whether there's a power source or not. The XTR-185 isn't immune to the above and seems to read an excessive amount of false alarms. With all the negative above this detector will still have its uses for some. For the environmentally suavé this unit comes with a built in solar panel on top to lengthen the battery life. Other feature include 360 degree X, K, KA, superwide KA bands, VG-2 cloaking technology, one highway and three city modes, all with moderate performance.
The Whistler DE1788 can also be cordless if you'd like but doesn't seem to fall quite as subject to the normal incapability's of a wireless unit and this is why: The DE1788 uses four very high powered Nickel metal hydride AA batteries. This adaptation and improved feature allows the DE1788 to operate without a duty cycle making it the only cordless radar detector able to do so and effectively improving performance. Your unit will come with a quick and easy rechargeable cord. The Nickel batteries are heavy and can lead to frustration with keeping the unit mounted to your car due to excessive weight. The Whistler DE1788 is the only cordless unit with an ability to detect both K and Ka band POP radar, however the Ka band POP radar detection is lacking slightly. This unit picks up X bands, K bands, and laser extremely well. Another added benefit is the 1788's ability to alert you when real threats lie around the corner; the false alarms are minimal especially when X band is turned off; this can clearly be recognized as one of its defining characteristics. In my opinion this model is the best cordless radar detector under $200 out there; it has the most bang for your buck.
The Whistler Pro 3450 is a very enticing and feature rich radar detector. I won't go into much detail on this product but to say it is well worth the money and I want to caution you the installation process can be very tricky. With your unit you should receive a very comprehensive set up guide allowing you the ability if you are very hands on to install it yourself. I hope these reviews have been helpful in your decision making process.
Posted by alexfrye1025 at 3:27 PM EDT