This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Escort Radar + Laser Detectors. All opinions are 100% mine.
The majority of the driving I do is behind the wheel of a small, zippy sports car. Though sadly, I occasionally get dogged by my friends and family for driving it like a little old lady. My typical response is that I enjoy the luxury of the vehicle’s interior and the drive itself, why would I ever want to rush that experience. I have never used a radar detector because 99% of the time I lock the cruise control near the speed limit, lean back and keep it between the lines. But when Escort offered to let me review their flagship radar detector, the Max 360, I thought it would fun and interesting to try a high-tech auto gadget for a change of pace.
The recently released Escort Max 360 is a radar/laser detector that (according to Escort) “provides the most precise 360° protection available”. Its dual internal antennas provide full-circle awareness, instantly identifying the source type and its direction.
In the Box:
- Max 360
- Soft-sided travel case
- NEW magnet “Sticky Cup” windshield mount feature
- 12-volt SmartCord
- Quick reference guide.
Setting up the Max 360 is a pretty simple task. As with nearly everything these days, the Max 360 has an app available for download for both Android and iOS devices. The Escort Live app visually enhances the telemetry the radar detector is collecting. The next step is to set the magnetic suction cup mount somewhere on your windshield that does not interfere with your view and click the Max 360 into place. Then plug the SmartCord into any 12-volt power port. The final step is to pair your two devices and you are good to go.
The Escort Max 360 is a lot bigger than the radar detectors I remember friends having back in the day. Not horribly so, but I would assume it is larger to make room for all of the high-end sensors and tech. The controls and speaker are located on the top of the device. There are several additional speaker grills on the bottom as well. Depending on how you mount the Max 360 in your vehicle, accessing the buttons maybe difficult but thankfully the mute control is available on the SmartCord. Everything else can be pre-done before you take off down the road.
The left front provides the speed limit, your speed, and what type of sensor/detector is within range of your vehicle whether it is: X-, K-, and Ka-band radar signals, laser threat, red light or speed cameras. The right front has four arrows that give you the direction that the ping/source is coming from. The dual antenna front and rear detection rapidly scans your surroundings for all of these threats.
In addition to actively monitoring your surroundings, the Max 360 comes preloaded with Escort’s database (the DEFENDER) of active red light and speed camera locations across the U.S. and Canada. Escort provides weekly updates via their website to keep your detector up-to-date. This database is a subscription based service that currently only works on Windows-based computers (aka no OSX/Macs).
Having never used a radar detector before, I was amazed how many threats are out there trying to nail you. Everywhere I drove, the Max 360 was letting me know what and from where things were pinging me. Being the tech-geek, data guy I am…I love the situational awareness the Max 360 gives you. It lets you know where the classic radar/laser gun speed traps, red light and photo radar cameras are. The Max 360’s digital signal processing enables it to “see” further ahead and its quick response/notification time combine to provide a larger buffer for response. The GPS-powered AutoLearn technology intelligently rejects false alerts based upon signal frequency and location.
In this modern age where Big Brother is always watching us, there is no doubt that with better, cheaper technology the number of places the Powers That Be are monitoring our vehicles while on the road is growing exponentially. Having a radar/laser detector is not illegal in a majority of the U.S. (just Virginia & DC) and only helps level the playing field, if even just a little. I am definitely not a speedster by any stretch of the imagination but with the Escort Max 360, I am more aware of what is going on around me and things I cannot see.
The cost of receiving a ticket is constantly going up both in terms of the ticket fee itself but the potential increase in insurance rates. There are many out there who have received tickets erroneously or were not aware of the current speed limit due to poor signage, construction, limited visibility, etc. I would say the best feature of the Max 360 is that it reminds you of the speed limit, makes you aware of what your speed is, and where detectors/cameras are to help you drive better and more safely. Escort believes so strongly in the Max 360, they offer a “Speeding Ticket Limited Guarantee” including both radar and laser speeding tickets when you purchase their flagship directly from their factory. The Escort 360 is definitely a keeper. So much so, I plan on having power hardwired from my car’s rearview mirror so I don’t have to have cords dangling across my dash and windshield.
Source: The sample for this review was provided by Escort. Please visit their site for more info.