Affiliate Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate, Automoblog earns from qualifying purchases, together with the radar detectors featured right here. These commissions come to us at no further price to you.
Uniden R3 vs. Uniden R4: Quick Take
As far as which one you must go along with, here’s what we advocate:
- When it comes to cost: The Uniden R3 is our selection. As of this writing, it retails for about $300 on Amazon. The R3 is one of the best radar detector on this worth vary and can shortly pay for itself if you happen to keep away from a ticket or two whilst you personal it.
- When it involves options: We will go for the Uniden R4 each time. As of this writing, it retails for about $350 on Amazon. The R4 has a number of handy options the R3 doesn’t, together with an Auto sensitivity mode, an Auto Mute Memory operate, and a Memory Quota financial institution.
Let’s take a more in-depth take a look at every radar detector.
Uniden R3: Affordable & Trustworthy
Other items are inexpensive than the Uniden R3, however radar detectors are normally a “get what you pay for” sort of product. The R3 is good as a result of it’s not practically as spendy because the R7 or R8, the 2 on the prime of Uniden’s radar detector lineup. And whereas it’s double the worth of one thing just like the Cobra RAD 480i, the R3 can be twice the radar detector when it comes to reliability and accuracy.
Trustworthiness is essential when searching for a radar detector. While no radar detector is resistant to false alerts, the R3 retains them to an absolute minimal. The better part concerning the Uniden R3 is that when it goes off, I do know an actual menace is within the neighborhood. In different phrases, it’s a radar detector you’ll be able to take to the financial institution when the show lights up.
Here is a hyperlink to my full evaluate of the Uniden R3, however permit me to summarize among the excessive factors.
Radar & Laser Protection
The Uniden R3 will provide you with a warning to X, Okay, and Ka radar bands and laser (LiDAR) weapons, with the show displaying the frequency when a specific radar band is detected. The corresponding sign energy indicator strikes from inexperienced to yellow, then purple, relying on how shut you might be to the menace. Audible alerts are additionally issued, with the tones turning into extra speedy the nearer you might be to the radar supply.
Beyond the usual radar bands, the Uniden R3 picks up any close by purple mild and pace cameras. The R3 will present digital camera or site visitors mild icons and the corresponding distance (in ft) to the alert. The R4 does this as effectively.
All Threat Feature
The R3 will concurrently detect as much as 4 radar bands and present every of them visually by way of the All Threat function within the settings menu. The strongest sign is designated because the precedence, displaying entrance and heart on the OLED show. Other alerts seem within the left nook by way of just a little digital chart. Below this digital chart is the kind of radar band, adopted by sign energy bars that ascend vertically the nearer you get to the supply.
The R4 additionally has the All Threat function. The default setting for each items is off, however turning it on gives you extra situational consciousness. Neither the R3 nor R4 has directional alert arrows, however All Threat will at the very least provide you with a warning to a number of radar sources in your fast space.
Driving With The Uniden R3
While I dwell within the Detroit metro, the R3 is right in case you are in a small city or a rural space. It’s true that some radar detectors supply Bluetooth functionality with a appropriate smartphone app. That has its benefits so far as receiving real-time alert notifications, however every part is crowd-sourced. That’s nice for right here in Detroit, or one other massive metropolis, the place there are extra individuals on the app, however in a smaller city, these apps could not have the identical worth.
If you reside in a rural space, there are doubtless fewer customers on these apps reporting the situation of various radar bands, site visitors cameras, and pace traps. Where I grew up in rural Iowa, there have been a number of locations the native officers at all times sat (out by the baseball fields and within the Bomgaars parking zone). On a number of events, they’d combine it up and hit you with a ticket if you weren’t cautious. But for probably the most half, you didn’t want an app notification to know the place they had been hiding.
In that regard, the Uniden R3 is a winner. You may have the detection vary with out paying for options you could not use, like Bluetooth. Yet, on the similar time, you additionally gained’t have an affordable, chirpy field that falses out and drives you nuts.
Uniden R4: Feature Packed Protection
The Uniden R4 is constructed on an all-new platform, giving it a bonus over the R3 when it comes to detection vary, false alert filtering, and out there options. I just like the Auto Mute Memory operate and Auto Sensitivity mode, as each are handy whereas navigating heavy site visitors right here in Detroit.
This makes the R4 an ideal “set it and forget it” radar detector.
The R4’s new platform incorporates two Low Noise Amplifiers to extend the detection vary in comparison with the R3. Likewise, the R4 detects Gatso radar (RT3 and RT4 frequency ranges) utilized by the newest pace cameras and different photograph enforcement units. In this regard, the R4 gives extra safety from extra radar sources than the R3.
These are key variations that justify the $50 worth hole between the Uniden R4 and R3. Here is a hyperlink to my full evaluate of the R4, however permit me to summarize among the excessive factors.
Like the R3, the Uniden R4 has City and Highway modes. In City mode, X and Okay band sensitivity is diminished to stop false alerts, whereas Ka bands keep at full sensitivity. In Highway mode, all bands go to full sensitivity to provide the most response time on the open highway. You can additional optimize the R4’s sensitivity ranges by way of the Advanced Mode.
The aforementioned Auto Sensitivity mode is speed-dependent, switching forwards and backwards between City and Highway at a pre-set pace. In the settings menu, you’ll be able to set the R4’s switching level between City and Highway in 5 mph increments between 10 and 60 mph.
When you encounter a stationary or “fixed location” false alert, the R4’s Auto Mute Memory function will doubtless kick in and robotically lock it out. Here in Detroit, I’ve had my R4 lock out plenty of false Okay band alerts, from the doorways at CVS to the warehouses within the extra industrial elements of town.
Auto lockout performance is normally reserved for higher-priced items, just like the Escort MAX 360c. The truth the Uniden R4 has this functionality for below $400 is an enormous plus and a serious promoting level.
The R4’s up to date platform permits a reminiscence quota function, which the R3 doesn’t have. Memory Quota permits you to set the person variety of Mute Memory and Mark Locations. In complete, the R4 can save as much as 2,000 factors between the 2, however you’ll be able to allocate that a technique or one other in 50-point increments.
Right now, I’ve my Mute Memory set on the most of 1,750 allotments, which means I’ve 250 for Marked Locations. I are inclined to encounter extra Mute Memory places right here in Detroit, so I would like the very best allotment potential. However, I might drop that allotment for Mute Memory in 50-point increments if I want extra room for Marked Locations.
Driving With The Uniden R4
Although the R3 is a stable radar detector, the Uniden R4 can be a lower above because of its new platform and technical design. If you’re a radar detector fanatic, the worth distinction is not going to matter. The false alert filtering is best, and the Ka Segmentation choices really feel extra exact and dialed in after you have them set. Like the R3, the R4 is a dependable and reliable unit, simply to a better diploma. I nonetheless use my R3 occasionally, however I like my R4 higher.
The OLED show can be nicer on the R4 and is an enchancment over the R3.
Uniden R3 vs. Uniden R4 Verdict
- Performance & Value Combo: The Uniden R3 will get our vote, retailing for $300 on Amazon. You can spend much less on a radar detector, however they gained’t ship the efficiency of the R3. If you might be new to radar detectors and trying to buy your first one, the R3 is a superb selection.
- Features & Functionality Combo: With its improved design, the R4 takes the cake for about $350 on Amazon. If you’re a radar detector fanatic or like having the newest devices, the R4 will fulfill your candy tooth.
Carl Anthony is Managing Editor of Automoblog and a member of the Midwest Automotive Media Association and the Society of Automotive Historians. He serves on the board of administrators for the Ally Jolie Baldwin Foundation, is a previous president of Detroit Working Writers, and a loyal Detroit Lions fan.