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Best Cheap Radar Detectors Under $100 Reviewed

best radar detectors under $100
My hate for speeding tickets pushed me to try different options for radar detectors, including the cheaper and the inexpensive ones that wouldn’t cost as much.

I did my research and own tests to give you my recommendations and reviews for the top 10 most affordable radar detectors under one hundred dollars price tag!

Before we proceed to the in-depth reviews, here are my top picks from these great detectors:

Most User-Friendly
Cobra SPX 955
Best Overall
Cobra RAD450
Most Affordable
Uniden DFR1
Options for multiple alerts (audio/visual) plus warnings well ahead of time make it easy for every driver to adjust speed and avoid tickets every time.
The ability to uncover signals of all types, not only various radar bands but also VG-2 detectors and lasers, makes this high-performance product very versatile.
With both easy-to-read display and good alert system, this detector gives every penny's worth with its budget-friendly price tag.
Most User-Friendly
Cobra SPX 955
Options for multiple alerts (audio/visual) plus warnings well ahead of time make it easy for every driver to adjust speed and avoid tickets every time.
Best Overall
Cobra RAD450
The ability to uncover signals of all types, not only various radar bands but also VG-2 detectors and lasers, makes this high-performance product very versatile.
Most Affordable
Uniden DFR1
With both easy-to-read display and good alert system, this detector gives every penny's worth with its budget-friendly price tag.

The Best Cheap Radar Detectors Under $100 Reviews

1 – Whistler CR75 High Performance Laser Radar Detector

Overview

With Whistler first-class quick signals detection you will have the most powerful detector among others which will last you for years. If you want a radar detector which is more capable than many other supreme radar detectors under $100, there aren’t many choices which are more viable than this model from Whistler.

The blue LED display ensures that you will never have issues seeing the screen of your radar detector, even in the harshest of glare.

Whistler CR75 is an excellent choice for the countryside as it features superior range when compared to other models in its category and price range.

The Whistler offers you the ability to detect quick signals that ensure that this model will not be outdated for years to come unless radar detection bands change.

The adjustable volume for this detector means that you will not have to deal with any of the issues that you get with most other radar detectors that can tend to get annoying in the car. The whole user interface of this radar detector is simply a joy to use, unlike other models.

PROS:

  • Features a blue LED display for improved visibility.
  • It provides superior range when compared to most competing models.
  • Features speed detection radar for the identification of quicker signals.
  • Capable of recognizing a wide range of radar bands.
  • Features adjustable volume for more comfortable use.

CONS:

  • A little more expensive than some options.

Most of the users noticed that this Whistler is very good at recognizing false signals. The number of radar bands that can be caught by this model is quite impressive. Some of the newer bands, which are meant to be more difficult to pick up, are much easier to spot with this model.

If you want a radar detector that is versatile, modern, and useful, this product is a great purchase that is worth your money. It comes with a clip mount, windshield mount, and power cord. It can be purchased either on Amazon or at Walmart.

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2 – Cobra Electronics RAD450 Radar

cobra rad 450 review

Overview

According to RAD450, you may forget about false signals and with extra money get the best class radar detector among similar top detectors under 100 bucks.

If you want a radar detector that is powerful enough to get the job done with ease and you don’t mind spending a little bit of extra money, you will love this product from Cobra. This detector comes with an anti-false circuitry, OLED display and voice alert.

The ability to uncover signals of all types, not only various radar bands but also VG-2 detectors and lasers, makes this product very versatile.

This radar detector comes included with a filter system that allows it to disregard any signals that could raise false positives. For example, collision detection systems and certain types of cruise control can set off other radar detectors.

You are better off using a detector that can avoid these false positives. This might be your best radar detector under $100 if the price and the quality matter to you.

This gives you a list of radar sources that create false positives that can be updated manually by the user to ensure that it is always up to date. This makes your radar detector much more useful in the real world as you can always be relatively sure that a radar source is a reason to slow down, and not anything else.

PROS:

  • This product can detect radar signals, VG-2 detector signals, and lasers
  • Lasers can be spotted from both the front and the rear
  • The filter system can be updated by the user to reduce false positives
  • Features an alert system with voice alerts
  • Features an instant-on capability which improves the ease of detection

CONS:

  • Alert isn’t too loud for drivers who prefer to crank up music while dirving.

This model also features a voice alert system. This system ensures that you will always be able to pay attention to the road and your radar detector at the same time without putting yourself at risk. Safety is always an important consideration, and this is a relatively safe product.

Cobra is one of the better makers of radar detectors, so you can rest assured that this product will provide you better service than some of the competition. Among the price range, customers say that RAD450 is a solid and very useful radar detector. The product can be purchased online through the brand’s website.

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3 – Whistler XTR-135 Radar Detector

Overview

Cheap, small, yet provides superb coverage – the Whistler XTR-135 is an excellent radar detector with a price tag under $100. For those with a higher budget, topnotch radar detectors priced at $300 are great options, too.

Design-wise, we love how compact this radar detector is because stealth mode is so easy if you don’t want anyone getting curious as to why you have a radar detector in your car. But don’t let the small size fool you; this radar detector packs in enough power to give you reliable performance on the road.

This pocket-sized device provides total band protection from all laser and radar signals. You also get full coverage on all sides of your car, thanks to its 360-degree protection.

Guaranteed, this radar detector will pick up those hard-to-detect signals whether it’s coming from the front, rear, or sides. 

As an added feature, you’ll also know the strength of the signal so you can react accordingly and reduce your speed. 

Like most radar detectors, the Whistler XTR-135 has a City Mode and Highway mode. When you’re driving on the highway, sensitivity is increased so you’re alerted immediately if there are radar or laser guns targeting the area.

On the other hand, City Mode lowers the sensitivity level when you’re driving in the city since there are a lot of false threats waiting to make your radar detector go crazy.

PROS:

  • Very compact size, good for stealth applications
  • 360-degree protection
  • Highway and City modes
  • Total band protection from radar and laser
  • Volume control

CON:

  • Smaller display than other detectors.

This radar detector also conveniently comes with a volume control option. Honestly, we don’t know why many radar detectors to this day still don’t incorporate this simple function. Controlling the volume is handy if you don’t want to be bombarded by loud alerts while you’re on the road. If you want a quiet drive, you can mute your radar detector as well. 

A reason to complain is the smaller icon display. It does take a while to get used to, but the small display is pretty much expected given the size of this radar detector. 

All in all, we like how this small radar detector is able to deliver such a performance that even bigger radar detectors fall short at. Although the small display is a bit unsettling at first, the Whistler XTR-135 provides great functionality to help you avoid speeding tickets.

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4 – Cobra SPX 955 IVT Radar Laser Detector

Overview

Want the best value for your money? The Cobra SPX 955 is tough to beat in the under-$100 department. Design-wise, it’s more compact than other units in the SPX line. But more than appearances, the Cobra SPX 955 delivers reliable performance too.

There’s two ways to get alerts on this radar and laser detector: through the display or through audible alerts. I love the UltraBright Data Display on the SPX 955; it’s easy to read whether day or night.

Plus, you can adjust the brightness from “bright” to “dim” to “dark.  If you’re going stealth mode especially during night driving, switching to dark is useful.

You can set up the Cobra SPX 955 to emit voice or tonal alerts. Such unique tones and readouts help you know what’s going on even without glancing off the road – a safety feature as well.

The Cobra SPX 955 detects both radar and laser for ultimate protection against speeding tickets. It detects X, K, Ka, and even the less common Ku bands. It’s also instant-on ready so you won’t be caught off guard by hard-to-detect POP guns.

When you’re on the road, a fast response from your radar detector is crucial for you to have ample time to reduce speed.

PROS:

  • Adjustable brightness
  • Voice and tone alerts
  • Ultra-fast response
  • IVT filter system
  • IntelliMute and IntelliMute Pro

CON:

  • Device may get warm after a long time of use.

Armed with Xtreme Range Superheterodyne Technology (it’s a mouthful, I know), you get lightning-fast detection and extra range so you’re warned as early as possible. Plus, you’re protected against VG-2, Spectre I and Spectre IV+ RDDS for undetectability.

To handle annoying false alarms, the Cobra SPX 955 has several features in place. It has an IVT filter system which reduces false threats coming from sources such as collision avoidance and cruise control systems.

The other features are IntelliMute and IntelliMute Pro. The former is a mute function that lessens false alerts depending on your set engine RPMs, while the latter prevents detection by RDDs when you’re traveling at slower speeds.

Overall, the Cobra SPX 955 has a great feature set even at under $100. If you want a radar detector that’s affordable yet equipped with advanced features, this will not let you down.

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5 – Uniden DFR1 Long Range Laser/Radar Detector

Overview

The Uniden DFR1 is one reliable radar detector that fulfills most needs of every driver in the highway, even with its value and it being at the lower end of the market. Many were blown away by its accurate, wide-ranging, and seemingly false-free device, especially when it costs below a hundred bucks.

The Uniden DFR1 manages well with signal detections, especially with common signals from radar guns.

It alerts the user right away through its audio alerts and then determines what band range the signal is coming from.

PROS:

  • Long Range Detection Capability
  • Can protect from X, back, and Ka-band alarms
  • Crisp and clear pop and laser alert alarms
  • Options to drive with Highway/City/City 1 modes

CONS:

  • Alert sound is high pitched, which may be disturbing for a few.

The Uniden DFR1 performs almost as well as its other much expensive brothers, the DFR6 & DFR7, only it lacks traffic sensor filters. It displays the type of frequency it detects on its display, whether it’s x, K, KA, or L.

It also indicated the signal strength (1-5) so the driver knows approximately how near or far the source of the signal is. This way, cautionary actions can be calculated even more, with even more assurance of no speeding violation.

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Conclusion

If you want the best cheap radar detector around but you don’t want something which amounts to an overpriced paperweight, this guide should help you out. If you a little higher budget, check our under $200 series, with added features like detection of red light speed cameras, etc.

We hope that we have managed to give you a good idea of how effective these individual models are, feel free to ask us anything in the comments below.

William