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  #6 (permalink)   IP: 75.104.128.37
Old 2008-08-04
haymondsridgerunner haymondsridgerunner is offline
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It's amazing to have such a long review, yet nowhere do you mention the absolutely sh*tty audio ramp up. You have to LOOK at the detector to get any feel of how close to the radar source you are. The audio ramp up has two levels, beep...beep...beep and beep.beep.beep, that's all it has. It doesn't even have a constant tone when sitting directly in front of a radar source. Totally inexcusable in a, now, $500 radar detector.
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  #7 (permalink)   IP: 192.168.1.1
Old 2008-08-04
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haymondsridgerunner,

Welcome to the forum and your point is well taken.

The reason that I didn't mention the audio ramp-up when I initially conducted this review, was because I believed this to be the intentional alerting nature of the Beltronics STi Driver. In otherwords, I believe that the STi Driver has essentially two alert levels, slow for not-so-important threats (weak) and fast, for important-threats (strong, close-by).

The fact that the Beltronics STi Driver has the ability to alert to a distant (weak) and brief radar threats (sometimes well) before other top-rated models is in my opinion, the most important aspect of this detector's performance, regardless of the ramp-up, which admittedly is not silky smooth like the Escort Passport 8500 X50, the Valentine One, or not as smooth even the Beltronics RX-65 Pro. For me, this wasn't an important consideration, as I'd take the additional advanced warning time I get with this detector.

In the case of the Escort Passport 9500i, however, this story is a little different. When I had reviewed one of the pre-production models, I was quick (in fact the first) to point out its alert ramping issues (which have still not been completely resolved, as I write this). In this case it was clear that the detector had some issues handling its increased dynamic-range and is sometimes not linear (as it appears to try).

In the case of the Beltronics STi Driver, I accepted their alerting approach (fast/slow) because its performance is so astounding (at the time) and appeared to be a conscious design element.

It's OK that you don't. Radar detector usage and preference is certainly a subjective one. I merely hope that my detailed ("long") review described enough of the character that you understand more of what it is like to live with the detector day in and day out, than would be provided by mere distance charts, alone.

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  #8 (permalink)   IP: 75.104.128.38
Old 2008-08-11
haymondsridgerunner haymondsridgerunner is offline
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Well I, and MANY others, believe this one shortfall disqualifies this detector for use. I sold mine. It is absolutely ridiculous to have to LOOK at the detector to gauge how close you are to the source. $30 Cobras have better audio ramp up.

Until that one issue is FIXED for real, I won't try again.
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  #9 (permalink)   IP: 192.168.1.1
Old 2008-08-11
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^ Fair enough.

What have you selected as your replacement?

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  #10 (permalink)   IP: 75.104.128.59
Old 2008-08-21
haymondsridgerunner haymondsridgerunner is offline
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Well, I tried a 9500i but was EXTREMELY disappointed with sensitivity, my X50 Rev. 5 (S7 horn) is MUCH more sensitive. Guess I'm stuck with the X50 until the 9500i is better, or the STi audio rampup actually gets fixed.
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