There are few incidents on the open road that create the emotion of receiving a speeding ticket. The reaction of individual drivers can vary from anger to embarrassment to anxiety. A speeding ticket will anger those who think speed limits are pointless and believe that going faster allows them to get where they are going quicker. Embarrassment is a common reaction of those who don’t usually speed and feel ashamed to have been caught doing so. Others immediately get nervous thinking about the immediate and long-term impact on their finances.
Speeding tickets can range in cost from $40 to $150 depending on the severity of the violation and the area the driver is caught speeding. For example, different states have different fines for violating speed limits. However, all states fine drivers harshly for speeding through school zones. A fine for speeding through a school zone just 2-3 MPH over the limit can be more severe than going 7-10 MPH over the limit on a freeway.
There is an easy way to avoid all those emotions and monetary punishments: purchase a radar detector. Radar detectors scan the local area and identify the active radar and laser signals in the area. These devices alert the driver to the signal in use and allow them to adjust their speed before they are caught by police. If you are shopping for a radar detector, you can trust the value of our reviews to help you make the right selection. In this review, we look at the features, pros, and cons of the Cobra XRS 9470.
Features of the Cobra XRS 9470
The Cobra XRS 9470 offers detection of seven radar signals, six laser signals, and safety signals. The XRS 9470 uses 360-degree detection to help identify signals emanating from in front of and behind a vehicle, providing you with all-around coverage as you drive down the road. The UltraBright radar display provides accurate information about the active signals in the area. The simple display provides band identification signals and a distance meter that provides a rough estimate of the signal’s proximity.
As with many other models from Cobra, the Cobra XRS 9470 has VG2 and Spectre Alert technology. Law enforcement officials use radar detector-detectors that are capable of identifying consumer models in use in the area. With VG2 and Spectre protection, the Cobra XRS 9470 is able to block those signals and help your device remain undetectable when in use.
Other features of the Cobra XRS 9470 include super-fast sweep circuitry, voice alerts, and variable City/Highway modes. The super-fast sweep circuitry allows the Cobra to quickly detect radar and laser signals in the area, providing maximum lead time on alerts so you can adjust your speed in time. The voice alerts allow you to keep your focus on the road while still receiving alerts about radar and laser bands identified in the area. Lastly, the variable City/Highway modes allow your device to improve its performance in areas of dense population where more fixed-position signals could interfere with other units.
Pros of the Cobra XRS 9470
Cobra models are known for great performance and the Cobra XRS 9470 lives up to that pedigree. Drivers report that this model offers exceptional detection of radar and laser signals, both in terms of accuracy and range. The XRS 9470 repeatedly excels at providing drivers with enough warning to adjust their speed and avoid speeding tickets as a result.
More important than its accurate performance is the flexibility of its performance. Drivers indicate that the Cobra XRS 9470 performs with equal accuracy on wide-open freeways with long stretches of straight road as it does on winding highways with big curves. The super-fast sweep circuitry and 360-degree detection are responsible for these incredible performances.
What’s more, the additional features of the Cobra XRS 9470 put it in a class of its own. A lot of radar detectors promise a suite of features that are meant to make the devices more effective, but not all of them live up to the hype like this model. The variable City/Highway mode accurately adjusts the performance of the device so it continues to provide reliable detection, even in settings where it is bombarded by additional signals from garage door openers and other fixed-position devices.
You’ll also get a sturdy holder to keep your Cobra XRS 9470 in place. These holders have additional suction cups for even greater stability. You won’t have to constantly reposition the detector on the road. So keep the duct tape and superglue away from the dashboard as you won’t be needing it anytime soon!
Cons of the Cobra XRS 9470 Radar Detector
The XRS 9470 isn’t without complaints from consumers. There are drivers that complain about the range and effectiveness of this Cobra model. However, when you take a closer look at many of the complaints, you can poke holes in their arguments. One of the most common complaints is that the Cobra XRS 9470 radar detector fails to accurately detect law enforcement signals in dense urban areas. However, if users were properly using their City/Highway modes they could improve the performance of the device.
Likewise, false alerts are a common complaint. Again, proper use of the City/Highway modes can help minimize the number of irrelevant signals detected by the Cobra XRS 9470. On a final negative note, this model receives criticism for having a display that is difficult to read in the daylight. While this is a valid concern, the voice alerts can offset this problem by providing drivers with audible information about signals detected in the area.
This can also be a result of the XRS 9470 detecting bands that aren’t used by the cops anymore. Bands such as X aren’t used by most police forces anymore, which leads to other vehicles using the X band to sound an alarm on the detector. This can be easily altered though, with the XRS 9470 allowing you to pick and choose the bands you want an alert on, with detailed instructions included in the user manual.
However, a valid user complaint is that the XRS 9470 doesn’t always give you enough time to pump the breaks, with the alerts sometimes sounding when the cops are visible. This is most common with Laser sensors, which the XRS 9470 often fails to detect effectively enough. In turn, this may be an issue if your local police force tends to rely on a Laser gun to measure car speeds.
Honest Assessment of the Cobra XRS 9470
Inexpensive radar detectors often get a bad image for being cheap and ineffective. When it comes to inexpensive models, the Cobra XRS 9470 is one of the best performers. It offers the best combination of affordability and performance. In some cases, it outperforms more expensive models with the same set of features.
And, you can easily find the Cobra XRS 9470 on eBay in mint condition for a substantially cheaper price. This is an even better deal since detectors are known to be pretty durable if cared for.
With that said, the Cobra XRS 9470 radar detector is not the perfect device for every driver. If you need a device that provides the earliest warnings possible and a full suite of additional features (such as Bluetooth connectivity and smartphone compatibility), then you’ll need to invest in a high-end brand. However, if you need basic detection and want effective false-alert minimization, you would have a hard time finding a model that performs better than the Cobra XRS 9470.