The Passport series is known to be some of the top radar detectors available for purchase today. If you’re searching for the very best radar detector device within a particular price range then you need not look beyond this series.
But with the series providing the best bang for your buck, how does one choose between two of its models, namely the Passport 8500 X50 and the Passport 9500IX?
To help you manage all that confusion, we are going to pit them against each other in this Passport 8500 X50 VS 9500ix battle. If you want to find out which one’s better for you, then read on.
Features of Both Radar Detectors
The two models offer all-round 360° protection, detecting laser and radar signals from any given direction. This enables you to detect a possible threat, regardless of where it is.
Nevertheless, there are a couple particular features that put the 9500ix ahead of the 8500 X50. They are the AutoLearn GPS  technology and the Defender Database. These features cannot be found on the 8500 X50.
The 9500ix’s defender technology records the location of red light cameras, speed traps, speed cameras and every other high-risk areas around. Thanks to this database, the Passport 9500IX can provide you with an early alert when you happen to be approaching an area that is possibly dangerous. You also have more than enough time to get prepared and you are able to change your speed in a much safer manner.
The 9500ix’s AutoLearn GPS system enables the device to analyze frequency signals, making it a lot more effective when it comes to filtering out false alerts, giving it the edge over the 8500 X50.
While drivers everywhere would love the fact that false alerts are not an issue, the device’s filtering can be a little too aggressive. There have been scenarios where actual radar signals were marked as false alerts, and this just defeats the purpose of getting a reliable radar detector.
If you choose the 9500ix, you are better off turning this feature off.
Speaking of display, both the 8500 x50 and the 9500ix can be purchased with blue and red displays. It does feel like Escort missed the mark on these two devices as neither of them comes with a multi-colour screen. With each radar detector, you still get LED displays to show pertinent information.
Nevertheless, both displays are of good quality. They both come with adjustable brightness and when configured to the correct setting, the screen can be read even on an extremely bright day.
For the driver that just wants to set and go, there is an ambient light setting which automatically adjusts the brightness for you. This feature is extremely useful as you can focus on driving rather than fiddling with your radar detector’s brightness.
Even though they both hail from one model series, the 8500 X50 and the 9500IX have been designed completely different. It seems Escort wanted to make them as distinct as possible from their dimensions, display and even their overall shape.
The Passport 8500 X50 sports a slightly compact and slimmer design of the two. The majority of its control buttons are located at top of the device making switching between modes much easier.
This device does have a unique design feature in the sense that the front of the device is a bit skewed. This was done by Escort to ensure the display remains angled to the driver’s side on the left. This enables the driver to seamlessly read the information on the display.
Another unique feature of this device is its quick-release mount. This feature enables the driver to seamlessly detach or attach the unit from its mount. It makes the 8500 X50 very practical as you can take it off if you are headed into a jurisdiction with laws against the use of radar detectors.
The Passport 9500IX is a bit bulkier and bigger. This could have been done to differentiate it from other radar detectors in the series. As with most radar detectors, the majority of the buttons are located on top, placed close to each other to enable seamless access.
The 95000ix departs from the design language of the 8500 X50, as it has a regular front side. This enables the display to be seamlessly read from any seating position in the vehicle.
When it comes to performance, both the 8500 X50 and the 9500IX live up to their Passport moniker, they provide a really good performance.
The two devices in this price range are extremely effective when it comes to detecting numerous laser and radar signals. Considering that they are not top of the line, they offer a decent detection range, proving you with just enough time to act.
However, there is a performance difference when they are pitted against each other. Without a shadow of a doubt, the 8500 X50 is noticeably slower in recognising radar signals, particular those of the K band. The 8500 X50 does not detect the signal source until it is about 200 feet away, not enough time at all.
The Passport 9500ix trounces the 8500 X50 in this regard as it is able to provide you with an alert multiple seconds faster. This extra time in detecting laser and radar signals can be very beneficial to the driver.
Conclusion: Escort Passport 8500x50 or 9500ix
Both detectors are excellent in their performance ratings.
The Escort Passport 8500×50 is a decent radar detector, although a little outdated. Pitted against the 9500ix, it is noticeably lagging behind, however.
Most times it is difficult to declare a winner, however, the 9500ix wins it big this time. It has the overall better performance and enhanced features. If you are interested in getting the very best in this price range look no further than the 9500ix.