The latest crop of radar detectors uses GPS to alert you if a speed or red-light camera looms ahead -- and experts say the Escort Passport 9500ix is the best of the bunch. It excels at this new task, and it's also one of the best at detecting radar guns in Speed Management Laboratories' latest test. Reviewers also praise the AutoLearn feature, which automatically identifies false alarms and eliminates them. Other Escort models don't have these advanced features, and neither do less expensive detectors such as the Beltronics RX 65 (*Est. $300) or Beltronics Vector 955 (*Est. $150) . Other brands do offer camera-warning detectors, but they aren't quite as good either, according to reviews: The Beltronics GX 65 (*Est. $425) lacks the AutoLearn feature, for example. Escort's traffic-camera database updates are free at its website for 90 days; after that, they cost $20 a year or $40 for three years. The software is not Mac-compatible.
SpeedZones.com thoroughly tests the Escort Passport 9500ix and presents the results objectively. RadarTest.com tests the 9500ix head-to-head against three other GPS-equipped detectors. RadarBusters.com and LaserVeil.com review the 9500ix alongside its competitors more briefly. Popular Mechanics tests the 9500ix by itself in a very readable review. Plenty of owners report on this unit's real-life performance at Amazon.com.
The Escort Passport 9500ix is one of the top performers in this authoritative test by Speed Management Laboratories. Rather than making recommendations, this site presents all of the data from its expert tests and lets readers decide.
Review: Annual Radar Detector Test 2011-2012, Editors of SpeedZones.com
The Escort Passport 9500ix beats three other GPS-equipped radar detectors in this test, which judged the detectors' abilities with several types of photo radar and speed cameras. The 9500ix slightly edges out the Beltronics GX 65, but both of those models easily outclass the Cobra XRS R10G and Cobra XRS 9960G.
Review: Reviewed: GPS-Enabled Radar Detectors, Craig Peterson, Updated Aug. 17, 2011
"Radar Roy" Reyer, the former police officer who runs this retail site, says the Escort Passport 9500ix "is the best detector on the market right now." This page shows Reyer's "badge ratings" for two dozen radar detectors, and you can click on each model to see user reviews.
Review: Radar Roy's Badge Ratings, Roy Reyer
Popular Mechanics' Glenn Derene spends a week testing the Escort Passport 9500ix in speed-trap-rich southern Connecticut. He especially likes the unit's AutoLearn feature, which uses GPS to recall which repeated signals are false alarms.
Review: Escort Passport 9500ix Radar Detector Weeds Out False Alarms: Tech Test, Glenn Derene, Oct. 1, 2009
LaserVeil.com, a retail site selling a laser light-absorbing spray for cars, also rates radar detectors. The Escort Passport 9500ix is one of "the most advanced windshield radar detectors currently being produced" because it includes a GPS database of speed and red-light cameras, but there is no full review of this model.
Review: Radar Detectors Buyer's Guide 2008-2009, "The Veil Guy", Updated Jan. 11, 2009
With more than 190 user reviews posted at Amazon.com, the Escort Passport 9500ix averages 4 stars (out of 5) overall.
Review: Escort Passport 9500ix Radar/Laser Detector, Contributors to Amazon.com