Radar detectors have been developing new features over the last several years. Each new feature seems to give you an additional advantage over the previous model. But learning about their utility is crucial before you choose to invest in a specific model.
Radar detectors can vary in features and capabilities depending on the make, model, and price range. While some features are dispensable, others are integral to the way it works. One of the features that newer models have incorporated is GPS functionality. GPS capabilities in radar detectors have added a whole new level of features that let you get more out of your detectors. If you’re in a stump about whether to get one or not, it will help you to learn more about how this feature enhances your radar detectors.
Let’s examine a breakdown of the main benefits of GPS in a Radar Detector:
1. Low-Speed Muting
Low-speed muting is proving to be an extremely helpful additional feature in radar detectors. It works by letting you assign a specific speed in the detector’s settings, which allows it to mute all the sounds that come from other speed levels. Once in this setting, the detector will mute all the notifying sounds that should typically be heard at other speed levels. Basically, you get to skip the annoying alarm sounds that are played at unnecessary speed levels.
Low-speed muting is especially helpful to users who have a habit of driving in and around town with traffic. Your patience can be aggravated when you’re stuck in long queues of traffic, and the detector keeps blazing alarm sounds at you. Also, without this feature, you would have to keep reaching out to tap the mute button on the detector as you continue to drive.
The initial concern faced by most users is that the detector may skip informing you of some legitimate alarms since it is being muted for specific signals. The best course of action for this issue is to go for a model that allows you to assign the muting function to different bands of speed. These models will inform alert you with a beeping alarm whenever a signal is picked up so that you don’t miss anything.
2. Red-Light Cameras
A GPS enabled detector can also warn you of oncoming Red-Light cameras or even speed cameras that are in the vicinity. Red-light cameras are designed to capture visuals of your car if you’re speeding and follow it up with a ticket in your mail the next week. No one likes running into Red-Light Cameras when you’re not expecting it. It gets you into trouble for something completely avoidable. Radar detectors with GPS can detect the Red-Light Cameras, as well as speed cameras on the road. This allows you to be extra careful when you’re crossing these areas.
Try to get a detector that has a wide range of information in its database. More data means more camera locations stored in the system. Specific models from this radar detector list allow you to update the information in your database with recent data. This is a convenient option to have since you cannot possibly see the camera while driving, or remember all the locations yourself.
3. GPS Lock-out
GPS Lock-out is a feature that is simply indispensable if you drive around familiar routes regularly. It is a combination of radar tech and adaptive learning that the detector executes on your behalf. Some of us usually drive past the same old false alerts that are by the road. False alarms can become a nuisance when automatic doors, road signs, and other similar triggers are continuously triggering them. This feature allows you to entirely block out these signals that are caused by recurring harmless items that you pass by daily.
The GPS lockout feature may be automated, or it may require some manual operation. This will depend on the type and model of your radar detector. The higher-end sensors usually come pre-equipped with the automatic lockout function, so you don’t have to fiddle around too much with the device.
Automatic GPS Lockout: Detectors with the automatic lockout feature can identify false signals on its own and block them for you. This is especially convenient when you don’t want to keep operating the device every time it picks up an unnecessary signal. If you’re just starting out with GPS radar detectors, it may be advisable to go for a model that provides automatic detection.
Manual GPS Lockout: With manual lockout features, you have to set the device to ignore the false alerts manually. Whenever you encounter a wrong warning/signal, you will have to press the detector’s button multiple times (twice or thrice depending on the design) to activate the lockout. Some models require you to long-press the button to remember the false alert. Either way, once you do this, the detector remembers these signals and will to alert you next time you pass by them.
Additional benefits of GPS Radar Detection
Apart from these primary advantages, GPS radar detectors also assist you by giving you some extra perks:
- You can manually indicate markers for those speed traps that are in your area. This feature is valuable if you know the precise location of a speed trap, and want the detector to remember the site.
- Attach the power cable of the sensor to a power plug that does not activate or deactivate with your vehicle. This way, the detector will automatically power down when you park your car.
- Some models have automatic adjustments that can sense different speed levels. You can increase the sensitivity when you’re driving on the highway, ad reduce it when just driving around the block.
- A speedometer shows your current speed on the visual screen.
- Alerts of over-speeding when you assign a certain speed as standard.
- The screen also displays additional utility functions. These functions include a compass for directions, watch that tells time, etc.
Radar detectors with GPS come in a variety of models and features. Which GPS features you require should depend on the nature of your driving and the locations you frequently pass by. With the right features, a GPS enabled Radar Detector can make your driving trip a hassle-free and relaxing experience.