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Monthly Archives: October 2006

  • Bel STi Driver: Worth The Price?

    Now that we're carrying the Bel STi Driver, we're already getting the question: "Is it worth the money?" For some people, the STi Driver is well worth the money. Most of you, however, would be fine to stick with a Bel RX65 or an Escort 8500 X50 Black and save $100.

    The biggest benefit of the STi Driver is that it doesn't "leak" a signal that could be detected by "radar detector detectors" (RDDs). RDDs are used by police in areas where radar detectors are illegal to sniff out vehicles that have a detector. So, if you're in a state or country where radar detectors are illegal or if you sometimes drive through these areas, or if you drive a vehicle that is over 10,000 pounds the STi Driver could be a very wise investment. (Radar detectors are illegal in all states in vehicles over 10,000 pounds.)

    On the other hand, if you're like most of us and live in an area where radar detectors are legal then you won't find much of a reason to spring for the STi Driver. Some users claim that performance is slightly improved in the STi over the RX65, but not enough for us to recommend your spending the extra cash. The feature set is very similar between the RX65 and STi as well. The biggest difference is that STi offers automatic brightness control that will brighten/dim the display based on conditions. The STi also comes with a nicer case, an external speaker, and a direct wire SmartCord. One advantage for the RX65 is that it will detect the Ku band, which is used in some European countries.

    Our recommendation: If you drive a vehicle over 10,000 pounds, drive in areas where radar detectors are illegal, or if you want the best regardless of price, get the Bel STi Driver. Otherwise, stick with a Bel RX65 or an Escort 8500 X50 Black.

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