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Re: laser/radar detectors

At 07:18 PM 3/16/98 +0100, Svein Johan Frisvoll wrote: 
> Hi everybody!
> Have been looking around for info about laser/radar detector. But the only
> thing I found out is that a gadget costs from 99,99$ to 600$.
> Are they reliable?

There are so many variables that it is very difficult to say weather or not
they're reliable.

When clocked with straight up X band radar, they are nearly infallible
(this is
assuming that the driver is paying attention).

When you are clocked with "instant on" radar (usually KA band with
significantly less scatter than X band), it is difficult to detect and have
sufficent time to decelerate unless a vehicle near you is clocked.

Lidar (aka laser) is nearly impossible to detect (and avoid).  See, radar
detectors rely on the principle that radar scatters in all directions when it
hits a target, eventually the waves hit the detector -- and the operator is

One of the principles of a laser is that there is close to no scatter, making
it difficult to detect until you are nailed (or the beam *happens* to cross
your detectors path when the officer is clocking another car).  In fact, I've
been in a car with an inexpensive lidar detector that was clocked (and pulled
over) the detector did *not* signal.  To make it more interesting, we were
caravaning and our companion, who was about 20 yards behind us, had the
Valentine 1 (the best radar/lidar detector on the market) and he did not pick
up a signal either.

> Does they interfere with police radar/laser signals?


I might also add that everything that I've read about the so called "radar
jammers" says that they're bogus...this pertains only to the legal "white
jammers".  The FCC would NEVER allow a device that blocks radar...which is why
police do not have devices that jam radar detectors -- that kind of stuff is
illegal under any circumstance except for military use.

> Can the police detect if I have a radar/laser detector in my car?

Sometimes, but in the US, they are completely legal everywhere except
Washington D.C. and Virginia (trucks in NY can't use them
either)...although if
you get pulled over with one, I'd strongly advise that you make every
effort to
conceal it.  (most cops do not like those types of things and aren't lkely to
give you a break if they see the detector)

> What is VG-2 ?, and what does it mean that the detector is cloaking the VG-1
> signals'

The VG-2 is a radar detector detector.  Sort of a long winded
term...esentially, a radar detector actually emits radar signals (AFAIK, I'm
not too sure about this one).  In fact, in the early days of radar detectors,
(before they were shielded well) two vehicles travelling close to each other
with detectors would cause a signal.

Essentially, what the 'cloaking' is (again, AFAIK) is just extra shielding on
the detector so that the signal will not be emmited -- the police wont pick it

> Which gadget is the best buy?

I'd recommend only the best -- buy the Valentine one -- its about $400 US.  It
stands out over every device available (and is priced this way) and although I
don't own one myself (I have to covet my brother's) I would strongly recommend
it.  I've been getting by with a crappy $100 battery operated device - subpar
by all standards and am awaiting the extra cash to purchace a Valentine One.

(Battery operated detectors don't work nearly as well as the plug-in kind)

I believer that the NMA site has some links to FAQ's and such.

Hope that this helped a little, and corrections are always welcome.

good luck!


   Ethan J. Pinkert
   Software Test and Quality Assurance
   GTE Internetworking, Powered by BBN
   150 CambridgePark Drive
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   phone: (617) 873-4512		fax: 617-873-5183
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