Radar detectors are growing in popularity all the time as more and more people are coming to the conclusion that speeding tickets are about revenue, plain and simple. Audio Designs & Custom Graphics are specialists in the radar and laser detector category. We believe one of the best ways to avoid a costly fine and an insurance hike is to know when radar and lasers are being used around you. Once you come to the decision that an investment in one of the products is in order, you have to decide if a portable unit or a custom installed unit is for you.
A Little Radar Detector History
Portable radar and laser detectors have been on the market almost as long as the government has been using them on our roads. This is almost like a cat-and-mouse game. Someone invented radar for speed control, and someone else invented the radar detector for people to defend themselves against radar. Then a newer style of radar came out that worked on a different band, so the detectors would not pick it up. The makers of radar detectors then adapted their units for the newer radar bands. And back and forth it has gone for multiple decades.
Then Came Laser, Which Changed Everything
Laser, on the other hand, was a game changer. When a radar gun is being used, it cuts a pretty wide path as the signal fans out, so it can be difficult to pick someone out of a crowded highway. Laser, on the other hand, shoots an extremely narrow beam of light – approximately 3 feet in diameter at a few hundred yards. It gives the operator the capability to pick almost any vehicle out of a crowd and get an accurate speed.
It also presents a problem for a normal detector. The concept behind a radar detector is to pick up the radar being used on someone in front of you. If you are alone on a deserted road and get shot by radar, you will get a ticket. But on a road where there is some traffic, a good radar detector will alert you to its use in front of you. This won’t happen with a laser detector, as it fires light beams, not radio waves. A laser detector will only go off if a laser gun has shot you. At the point, it is time to pull over and look for your license and registration. If you were speeding, you are about to get a ticket.
But there is good news in preventing a laser gun ticket.
Is A Portable Detector Right For You?
Portable detectors are designed to pick up radar and laser, and can be mounted in many spots in the front of your vehicle, near the windshield, with a clear shot of the road ahead. There are many differences between cheap units bought at big box stores and the one sold at Audio Designs & Custom Graphics. The cheaper ones are more of a nuisance than anything, because they “false” a lot. The false readings will come from alarm systems in buildings and devices the government uses to monitor traffic speed. You are likely to find that it will end up in your glovebox, as you will get tired of hearing it go off for no reason. They also have limited range, so if you do come up on speed radar in use, it may be too late.
A quality portable detector will use sophisticated filtering so it can tell the difference between a false alarm and real radar. The vast majority of the time, when it goes off, you do need to check your speed. The good units also have much better sensitivity, so you will have more time to check your speed in the event you run into a radar trap.
Custom Installed Detectors Are The Best Defense
Custom-installed detectors take the art of radar and laser protection to a completely different level. Here is the good news in protection against laser. The custom-installed radar and laser units from Audio Designs & Custom Graphics do more than just alert you to your vehicle being shot by a laser gun. They protect you.
Here is how it works. In the front of your vehicle, we strategically place laser shifters. When they pick up the fact that a laser gun has shot them, they instantly fire back beams of light at the laser gun, not allowing it to get a reading on your vehicle. You now have time to check your speed, and slow down if needed. We also give you the option of adding rear laser shifters. While most of the time you will get shot from the front, for the ultimate in protection, we suggest adding rear laser shifters.
Choosing The Right Installation Facility Is Critical
With a custom-installed detector, we pay particular attention to the mounting of all your sensors. As mentioned above, the laser shifters have to have a clear shot back at the laser gun, or the hard-earned money you spent is wasted. In addition, the radar receiver has to be mounted in a spot where there is no metal in front of it, or it will not work properly. We will take as much time as needed to put all of your sensors in locations for their optimum performance while keeping the cosmetic integrity of your vehicle intact.
Inside your vehicle, a custom detector will have an assortment of items like LEDs, displays and controllers that will have to be mounted. We will work with you to put these units in discreet locations that look like the vehicle manufacturer put them there, while also allowing for easy use while driving.
If you have decided that a radar/laser detector is in your future, we invite you to stop by Audio Designs & Custom Graphics with your vehicle. We would love to get to know you better and show you around our facility. If you have decided that a custom detector is the best fit for you, ask us to show you our custom fabrication department – one of the largest in the southeast. If your vehicle is important to you, and you are looking for someone trustworthy, we think you have found a new home. Let us show you why we are rated one of the best shops in the area, year after year.
You can also contact us here for more information about any of our products and services.