As a regular motorist, you know how frustrating police stops can be, which can result in fines and other penalties. Most of the time, you will get stopped courtesy of a police radar. The good news is that you can beat the radar by getting a police radar detector.
The Uniden R7 vs. R8 review introduces us to two high-grade radar detectors that will save you from random police stops. Which of the two is the best, and what makes it stand out from other radar detectors? Keep up with this discussion to get answers to these questions and many more that you may have about these Uniden products.
We commence our discussion with the Uniden R7 Extreme Long Range Radar/ Laser detector. It has been a mainstay in the radar detector market for some time and has maintained a good reputation due to its impressive functionality.
Its name hints at its excellent performance, particularly its long ranger radar detection. This feature gives you ample time to slow down before reaching police radar spots. A built-in GPS allows you to mark geographical locations where you may encounter the threat and will alert you of the marked spots as you near them.
Many Uniden R7 reviews highlight its laser and radar protection feature. This unique feature alerts you of X, K, and Ka radar bands and laser guns. You can filter K and Ka bands or define their sensitivity levels depending on your location.
The R7 radar detector will save you from speed cameras and red lights. You will see an icon of traffic lights or speed camera on the display with the corresponding distance. Talking about its display, this gadget has a friendly OLED screen that is easy to read.
The OLED display shows the frequency of a detected band, with a strength indicator shifting between yellow, orange, and red, depending on your distance to the marked spot. You can engage the All Threat setting and detect up to four bands, with the strongest being the priority.
Other features of the Uniden R7 are:
- 360⁰ laser detection
- Battery voltage display
- Maximum speed warning system
- Dual antennas to display laser direction
- Voice alerts with auto-mute volume levels
- Suction brackets for effortless mounting
The Uniden R8 is a new entrant, and many consider it an upgrade of the R7. The R8’s dual design gives it superior radar and laser detection capability. It will identify threats from four directions and displays their band and strength.
This radar detector will help with the locations of speed cameras and red lights, which it shows via their respective icons. Its free and regular database and firmware updates ensure you have up-to-date info for the best driving experience.
False alerts are a common problem with most radar and laser detectors and may come from shop doors or car collision avoidance systems and blind spot monitoring. This issue is non-existent with the Uniden R8, courtesy of its advanced false alert filtering. Its GPS has an Auto Mute Memory feature that remembers false alerts and automatically mutes them.
The R8 is handy for situational awareness when driving, supported by its large, easy-to-read OLED display. The multicolor display shows battery voltage, current speed, band type, frequency number, band direction, and more.
Installation of this gadget is hassle-free: it comes with suction cups for mounting. It is advisable to install this radar detector in the middle of the windshield or dashboard for effectiveness.
Various Uniden R8 reviews laud its auto sensitivity mode, which automatically shifts between city and highway modes depending on speed limits. The following are other features of the Uniden R8 Extreme Long Range Radar/Laser detector.
- Programmable voice alerts
- Maximum speed warning system
- Overspeed alert mute
- Laser gun ID
- Gatso detection
- Compass display
- Vehicle battery saver and low battery warning
Uniden R7 Vs. R8 Differences
An in-depth look at Uniden R7 vs. R8 differences reveals plenty about them. We break down the differences into several attributes, as follows.
The first area you will notice the contrast between the two Uniden radar detectors is their appearance. Both sport compact frames, though the R8 looks bigger, especially if viewed from the side. The R7 has a longer body.
On the front area, the R8 appears to have a bigger screen, with sharper and more pronounced edges than its counterpart. Also, the R7 has no buttons around the display, whereas the R8 has the Mute/Dim and Mark buttons just below the screen. The R7 has these keys on the side.
The R7 has a rectangular mount button on the top, while the R8 has a trapezoid mount button.
The two gadgets have rear antennae, with the R7’s being flat. The R8 has a curved, outward protruding antenna.
2. What They Detect
Regarding detection, the Uniden R7 and R8 have almost similar features. They can detect radars, red lights, speed cameras, lasers, and MultaRadar CD (MRCD). The Uniden R8 has an edge over the R7 in detection capability, as it can also find MultaRadar CT (MRCT) and Gatso RT3 and RT4 radars, which are newer technologies.
Furthermore, the R8 has a laser gun ID feature. The impressive detection capability of the R8 makes it a better pick, especially when looking at functionality.
The in-built GPS is a key defining feature of the Uniden laser and radar detectors. The GPS allows you to spot and mark the geographical positions of the threats. The GPS of the two are highly-functional and comes with the Auto Mute Memory, which remembers spots with false alerts and automatically mutes them.
Many users of the R8 claim that its GPS responds faster than the R7. However, this is debatable, as both seem to have a similar response time. The R7 supports more GPS lockouts at 2000, closely trailed by the R8 at 1750.
4. Detection Range and Speed
When picking a suitable radar detector, you must consider its detection range and speed. The higher the values, the more efficient the gadget is. The R8 has a longer detection range, averaging 2680 feet and a maximum of 2980 feet. On the other hand, the R7 averages at 2360 feet, reaching a maximum range of roughly 2430 feet.
The Uniden R8 has fast detection speeds, beating the R7 slightly. Its updated firmware and advanced digital signal processor are the primary contributors to its impressive performance.
At first sight, you may think the R8 has a bigger display than the R7, possibly due to the frontal area design. In reality, the two have almost-similar screen sizes. The multicolor OLED display in both gadgets is easy-to-read and displays multiple details simultaneously for situational awareness.
Information captured on the display includes:
- Signal strength and distance from the threat
- Type of threat
- Battery voltage
- Radar band frequency
- Speed unit
- A compass
The display quality is almost similar, though the R8s appear more refined. You can adjust the screen brightness to your comfort.
6. Driving Modes
Uniden R7 and R8 have city and highway modes, which determine their reception to different bands. When in city mode, the sensitivity of the X and K bands gets reduced to prevent false signals, while the Ka-band sensitivity remains at maximum. On highway mode, the sensitivity of all the bands is full to improve their reception.
The two radar detectors have the Advanced mode, which allows you to tweak the sensitivity levels. The R8 has the additional Auto mode, which automatically shifts to city or highway modes, depending on speed. This mode will save you from the hassles of shuffling between the two driving modes.
If you opt for the Auto mode, you must set the switching point between highway and city modes in preferred speed increments.
Price is critical when picking an ideal vehicle gadget. Typically, many people go for lower-priced items to be gentle on their budgets. It is not the right way to go, as you may miss out on essential features, something noticeable in the Uniden R7 vs. R8 price comparison.
Before the R8’s debut, the R7 was quite pricey, but people still went for it. It costs around $450, depending on the retailer, with the R8 going for $700-$800. The cheaper R7 is still an excellent radar detector, but it lacks several updates present on the R8.
The R8 and R7 radar and laser detectors boast rave customer reviews from various forums. The reviews play up their selling points, such as excellent functionality, as evident from this contribution, which talks about the R8’s laser gun ID feature.
A comment on the R7 on the same radar detector forum highlights its pros, like excellent K and Ka-band detection, customizable settings, and comprehensive digital readout. The same comment touches on cons, such as its noisiness in town, due to K band false alerts.
Look at more customer reviews from credible platforms to learn about the user experience necessary for selecting a befitting radar detector.
Is The Uniden R7 Or R8 Better?
A radar detector is a must-have gadget to help you avoid tickets and other resultant penalties. We look at two high-grade radar detectors in the Uniden R7 vs. R8, where we can appreciate their functionality owing to their impressive features.
The R8 is the latest model, meaning it has more features than the R7, notably Gatso detection, laser gun ID, and a longer detection range. It is a perfect choice if you want all-around performance.
The R7 is likewise efficient, though it lacks a few features present in the R8. You can opt for it if you want an affordable option but at the expense of a handful of add-ons.