Road Trippin’ Gadgets Page 2
Cobra iRadar Detector System
You don’t need JVC’s DVD receiver to use Cobra’s iRadar system, although having access to its larger screen certainly helps. The detector itself is a sleek, almost button-less slab of plastic that mounts to your windshield with a supplied suction-cup bracket and gets power from a 12-volt cigarette-lighter cord that comes with it. Except for a mute button on top and a volume knob on the side, all controls for the iRadar are via a free iPhone/Android app designed to work with the detector.
The detector will, of course, sniff out all types of speed-detection technology: X-Band, K-band, Ka-Band, laser, and even radar-detector detectors used in places where the devices are illegal, as well as speed- and red-light camera alerts. While most radar detectors can do this, it’s the smartphone app that gives the device its smarts. In addition to detecting speed traps, it also uses a crowd-source approach by allowing users to report in real time on police pointing radar guns at cars in an area, the location of red-light and speed cameras, and “Caution Areas” so that everyone else rocking an iRadar is kept informed. But keep in mind that these reports are only as good as the reporters issuing them. We also found that the moving map screen on the app had a hard time keeping up when we were traveling at highway speeds, and loaded in jagged steps.
The JVC KW-AV64BT’s screen mirrors the iRadar map screen when running the app, and we experienced the same screen-lag issue with it. But with the JVC receiver, you at least only have to have one, not two devices — the iRadar detector and your smartphone — stuck to your windshield.