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Escort PASSPORT Max Radar Detector Review

Escort PASSPORT Max Radar Detector

thumbs escort logo Escort PASSPORT Max Radar Detector Review

Introduction

Do you enjoy receiving speeding tickets? Do you get exciting at the thought of points on your license and your insurance rates going up? If so then this is not the product for you.
If you aren’t a big fan of those things, then you may be interested in checking out Escort’s newest radar detector, the PASSPORT Max. Touted as one of the most powerful detectors on the market with new “High Definition” performance and accuracy, this little gadget should help you avoid those pesky tickets once and for all. With a host of features including radar detection in the X, K, and Ka bands as well as Laser, a multi-color OLED display, GPS assistance, and access to the Defender database of known speed traps, speed cameras, and red light cameras, this detector sure does seem to pull out all the stops. Read on to see all of the features and of course how well it actually performs on the road.

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6 Comments... What's your say?

  1. The primary function of a Radar Detector is to alert you to potential threats, and that is where the new Passport Max disappoints. Here is a link to a video where the author demonstrates how Escort Autolearn can inadvertently lock out a legitimate K band speed trap: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mIoVVSmuAdA&feature=c4-overview&list=UUgLr7xoTU3XgAeLrEYp51sw. The detector in the video is an Escort Redline, but it has the same flawed feature as the Max. You can read for yourself the other problems with this detector on an unbiased forum: http://www.radardetectorforum.org, or even browse the Escort Radar Forum.

    For the price, this detector should be perfect. Yet there are numerous complaints of the Max “locking up” and having to be reset, Ka band false alerts in the middle of nowhere, oscillating mount, hard to read OLED display, inconsistent sensitivity to radar amongst similar units, etc. It really seems to be hit or miss if you get a “good” one, with forum members having to send theirs in for service 2 or 3 times to get the problems fixed. Most recently, a software glitch caused all the radar bands to be turned off after an update with the result that you had a “sleeping beauty” not detecting anything. It was only after several forum members received speeding tickets that Escort sent out an email to registered owners warning them of this problem. Bottom line here is not to be taken in by the marketing hype. Do your homework before you spend this much money as the Passport Max is most definitely not the best radar detector money can buy. If you do not need the most sensitive detector out there and do mostly city driving, buy a Whistler CR90. If you want the best, the Escort Redline and the Valentine V1 are the 2 top rated windshield detectors in the world. Given Escort’s problems with quality assurance of late, I would recommend the Valentine V1.

    When combined with the Valentine V1C Bluetooth dongle and a new free app on Google Play called “YAV1″, GPS capability to lock out false alerts is added to the Valentine V1. It is so effective at locking out false alerts yet not blocking genuine Police Radar at the same time that most experts are starting to call the V1 + YAV1 the detector of choice in Metro areas. You can read more about YAV1 on http://www.radardetectorforum.org in the Valentine section, or on Google Play. It will not lock out a genuine K band speed trap, and it will not disappoint you.

    • I wrote my review based on my experiences with the product and I have to say that I never had any of the issues you mentioned (aside from the mount which I went over extensively).
      During testing and in the months I have been using it after the review I have not once had a legitimate signal locked out.
      I unfortunately don’t have another Max and a radar gun to test the inconsistencies you mention. Obviously if the differences are large then it is a serious problem, but I have had no issues with my unit yet.
      I received an email from Escort about the software glitch you mentioned and that is clearly a huge flaw, though it was only an issue in very specific circumstances. Fortunately for me I had been pretty lazy about updates and wasn’t affected.
      From other Max owners that I have spoken to since the time of this review, there seem to be some quality control issues where the outer shell starts to separate. I don’t have this problem on mine but those who did sent it off to Escort and had a replacement back in just a few days.
      I have a feeling that it’s not that I have a “good” unit per say, just that the people with the “bad” units are the outspoken minority.
      For anyone looking to buy this detector I would urge you to do your research and come to your own conclusion, but I still stand by my recommendation as I believe this is still an amazing detector.

    • All this has been fixed. that is what’s so great about the max you can upgrade it. all is good with v1.6!

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