Using a radar detector is one of the best ways to avoid a speeding ticket. Whether you’re driving down a country road, busy highway, or long stretches of scenic interstate, this is the only way to know for sure when your speed is being monitored.

When it comes to radar detectors, it’s important to get one that works. That’s why it’s a smart move to invest in a Cobra radar detector.

Why?

They’re reliable, effective, and there’s one to fit just about any budget. As you’ll see in this review, some of their best cost less than $100.

In a Rush? Get this:

Cobra RAD 450

Not only is it really effective at filtering out false alarms, it’s easy to read display tells you everything you need to know. Plus, in open conditions, it has an impressive range of 2 miles.


The Top 5 Cobra Radar Detectors

1. RAD 450

Under $200

One of the first things you’ll notice about the RAD 450 is how sleek it looks. The OLED display is clear, easy to read, and shows both band identification and numeric signal strength when it picks up a signal. It detects multiple radar bands and six different lasers for more complete coverage.

This Cobra radar laser detector has processing power that’s so effective, it can lock onto signals as far as 2 miles away in open conditions. Plus, the advanced laser eye sensor means this 360 laser radar detector covers you from every direction. 

As far as false alarms, the RAD 450 uses sophisticated circuitry to filter out interference from garage door openers, traffic flow monitors, and even other radar detectors. Plus, it’s even advanced enough to reduce any false alarms from adaptive cruise controls and collision avoidance system in new cars.

I already mentioned the easy-to-read OLED display for visual alerts but this device provides audio alerts, too. In fact, it features both spoken and tonal warnings so you know what’s coming without having to take your eyes off the road.

If you’d rather have a quiet ride, you can silence audio alerts temporarily with the easy to use mute button or use the QuietDrive mode for a completely silent ride.

Both OLED display alerts and voice alerts can be programmed for English or Spanish. A suction cup mount, 76” power cable with cigarette lighter adapter, and hook-and-loop pad are also included. You get all this for less than $130.


2. ESD7570

It can be difficult to find a high quality product on a budget but the Cobra ESD7570 proves that it’s possible. In fact, for just about $60, you can get one of Cobra’s best performers without spending money you might not want to spend.

The ESD7570 is a straightforward, easy to use radar detector that’s packed with only the features you need to help you avoid speed traps and the costly fine of a speeding ticket. Best of all, it actually costs less than the fine on some speeding tickets.

Because it’s equipped with nine band coverage, it picks up most of the common frequencies that police use when monitoring speed, including both radar and laser detection. It also has 360-degree coverage so it picks up signals from the front, back, and sides.

The ultra-bright display shows which band is being detected and its strength. There are audio alerts, too, so you’ll know what’s coming without having to take your eyes off the road.

In addition to alerting you to speed traps, the ESD7570 also keeps you informed of any emergency vehicles in the area. This helps you avoid and back up from accidents and stay out of the way of emergency responders.

To avoid any false alarms, it also has City or Highway mode. There are a lot more devices to interfere with your device in the city: garage door openers, motion sensors, traffic detections. Switching to City-mode lowers the sensitivity a bit so you only hear alerts you need to.


3. SPX 7800BT

The SPX 7800BT is loaded with awesome features that really enhance both its performance and user experience.

What exactly do I mean by that?

Not only does this device work exceptionally well, it’s also really easy to use.

One thing that stands out when you look at the 7800BT is the OLED screen. It’s large, easy to read, and very clear, even in bright, sunny conditions. When you glance at it, you can find the information you need quickly and easily so you can get your eyes back on the road.

The entire SPX line uses high tech military grade technology and materials to make them as accurate as possible. That’s not all: the 7800BT also has a fast and powerful CPU that sweeps the entire band spectrum in less than 250 milliseconds.

This Cobra police radar detector is super-fast. It can pick up signals from radar, lasers, and the newest POP radar technology with more than enough time for you to react accordingly and drop your speed without looking suspicious.

It’s also set up for Cobra iRadar compatibility. That’s Cobra’s app that allows all users to upload information to create a large database that everyone with a compatible device can access. It alerts you to local speed traps as well as traffic light and speed cameras.

If you’re a little intimidated by the tech involved, don’t be. Setup and syncing the device to the app are pretty straightforward, even if you’re not very tech savvy. This device will run you about $160.


4. XRS9370

Another great option if you’re on a budget is the Cobra XRA9370. For right around $60, you get a compact radar detector that detects the most common radar and laser bands used by police in the US, Canada, and the UK.

The most impressive things about the XRS9370 are its range and speed. It performs fast and effective sweeps of the area you’re driving and has a wider, 360-degree range than most other devices in its price range. This means you have plenty of advanced warning even to the fastest radar guns in use.

As far as the display, it’s bright, easy to read, and uses band identification icons to show you what it’s detecting. There’s also a signal strength meter to give you some idea of how close you are to the speed trap. You can also choose to use the audio alerts so you never have to take your eyes off the road.

Another helpful feature is Safety Alert. This warns you of any emergency vehicles or road hazards so you can avoid them. Not only does this help you avoid getting caught in traffic, it helps keep the roads a little clearer for first responders.

To avoid false alarms, the XRS9370 also has City/Highway modes. In the city, other radar detectors, motion sensors, and even garage door openers can interfere with radar detection. City mode turns down the sensitivity slightly so you only hear the alerts that are really important.


5. SPX 5300

Last but certainly not least is the Cobra Electronics SPX 5300. As I mentioned, the SPX line uses military grade components and a modern design to increase sensitivity. This SPX model, though, only costs about $90. It’s pretty compact, but don’t worry, that doesn’t affect performance at all.

Despite its size, the SPX 5300 has a really great display. It features bright, colorful, easy-to-read icons that show you the band it’s picking up as well as the signal strength so you can judge how close the radar or laser is. There’s a dimmer so you can be a bit more inconspicuous at night.

Of course, there are audio alerts, too. Plus, it also has safety alert system alerts so you can stay clear of hazards and accidents, saving you time and keeping the area a little less congested for emergency crews.

Another great thing about this model is it’s relatively quiet because it doesn’t give off a lot of false alarms.

How does it do it?

Well, it has the same City/Highway mode that we’ve seen on other models that decreases sensitivity in urban areas where there’s more interference.

There’s more, it also has something called Intellimute, which takes your engine into account before alarming. So, if you’re stopped or moving slowly and it picks up a radar signal, it doesn’t alarm because it can tell that you’re not really moving even close to the speed limit.


Final Verdict

Best Cobra Radar Detector for the Money

RAD 450

Although all of these Cobra radar detectors are great, I highly recommend the Cobra RAD 450. The big, bright OLED display is easy to read and displays both band identification and signal strength. Plus, it’s so powerful, it picks up signals up to 2 miles away in the right conditions.

Another great thing about it is: it’s quiet.

Fewer false alarms keep you more alert because you know the ones that are coming through mean it’s time to pay a little more attention to your speed. If you’re looking for a way to avoid a speeding ticket, give this model a closer look.