10 Best Budget Radar Detectors Under $100 in 2020

Traveling throughout the country has taught me one thing: our country’s highways and roads aren’t the easiest to traverse. But there are ways for you to make things a bit easier, especially when it comes to knowing how to avoid speeding tickets.

Whether it’s a police officer gauging your speed limit or a traffic cam perched in hard to find locations, it’s very easy to get caught driving over the speed limit. But there’s an easy way for you to find out what’s up ahead.

Below are the best budget radar detectors under 100 dollars, chosen for their ability to read and detect cameras/radars of different types. Look further to see which are geared for your driving technique!

Our Recommended Radar Detectors Under $100

Uniden DFR1 Long Range Laser and Radar Detection

Uniden DFR1 Long Range Laser and Radar Detection, 360° Protection, City and Highway Modes, Easy-to-Read Color Icon Display with Signal Strength Meter Bars,Black
  • Our Rating
  • Long Range Laser Radar Detection

    Easy-to-Read Icon Display

    Weight: 8.8 ounces

Uniden DFR3 Long Range Laser/Radar Detector

Uniden DFR3 Long Range Laser/Radar Detector with 360 Degree Protection, 3 Modes, Highway/City/City 1 Modes, Easy to Read ICON Display with Numeric Signal Strength Counter
  • Our Rating
  • Long range laser Radar detection

    Easy to read Icon display

    10.5 ounces

RICHOYY Radar Detector

RICHOYY Radar Detector, Voice Prompt Speed, City/Highway Mode Radar Detector for Cars (FCC Certification)
  • Our Rating
  • Extra detection range and the best possible advance warning to even the fastest radar guns.

    Detects the latest pop mode radar gun

    Weight: 6.3 ounces

Here Our List of Top 10 Radar Detectors for Under $100:

 

Uniden DFR1 Long Range Laser and Radar Detection, 360° Protection, City and Highway Modes, Easy-to-Read Color Icon Display with Signal Strength Meter Bars,Black

The Uniden DFR1 is the best radar detector under $100, built for people that must find traffic cams and other speed detecting equipment that are positioned hundreds of feet from the users. If you spend most of your time on highways, this is the right tool to have in your vehicle. There are a lot of features listed under its belt. Let’s go over those that are most valued.

Review

There are three buttons fixed on the detector, one of which turns on the “City” mode for driving in populated areas. This is useful for avoiding lots of false alarms when you’re in a location with heavy traffic.

It doesn’t have to be used only in a city area. The body is black and compact, easily fitting on the windshield of your car. The dimensions are also great for storing in the pocket when you don’t want on on the glass. It has good durability and won’t break if you drop it from a short distance.

Highlighted Features

The best feature of the Uniden DFR1 would be its range. You’ll be able to tell where patrol cars are situated much farther away than some of the brand’s competitors, even when they aren’t in your line of sight.

The signal is spread out over a circular 360-degree angle that picks up laser detectors from all sides. And don’t worry about not hearing the speaking on time; it gets loud to the point where you’ll know what’s going on, even when you have music playing.

What Consumers are Saying

Most reviewers liked how easy the product is to get mounted on their vehicles, along with how it finds radar in enough time for drivers to adjust their speed to the appropriate limit.

Some were taken aback by the digital display due to the dullness of the light. You can see it in low-light visibility without any problems but might have trouble making out the screen when under the sun’s glare.

Pros/Cons

  • The range is significant enough to detect patrols that aren’t in the driver’s immediate line of sight
  • Scans for detectors ad signal within a 360-degree area of the device
  • Good speaker volume with an alarm that can be heard over loud music
  • The digital display is difficult to read during the daylight hours (due to sun glare)

What’s the Verdict?

Overall, the Uniden DFR1 is the best affordable radar detector and one of the longest in range. You’ll love the way it avoids picking up electromagnetic signals that you don’t need to detect. And for that, the product has one of the highest recommendations of the list.

Uniden DFR3 Long Range Laser/Radar Detector with 360 Degree Protection, 3 Modes, Highway/City/City 1 Modes, Easy to Read ICON Display with Numeric Signal Strength Counter

The Uniden DFR3 is the best budget radar detector, meaning that you’ll get the most out of this unit for less. Although it might look the same as most other radar detectors, you’ll quickly realize how dependable it is at finding patrols are cameras that are near to your automobile. Read more to see what it has to offer.

 

Review

Again, the body of this device is the typical build that you’ve probably seen on other radar detectors. But what this one does differently is scan and find detects on both city roads and large highways with ease.

It doesn’t matter how big they are, either. Even on an eight-lane stretch of the interstate, you’ll always pick up on cams and speed traps before your car approaches them.

Highlighted Features

If you need a detector that’s easy to mount, you’re in the right place. Doing so with this product is simple. Just place the mounting bracket on to your windshield and that’s it. There’s no lengthy instruction manual to get it in a car.

What Consumers are Saying

The overall likable feature for the Uniden DFR3 was its voice warning attribute, a good way to find out what’s going on nearby without relying on a sound alarm or the detector’s screen. Although those are available too, not everyone prefers to use them. However, take note that this model must be plugged into a DC outlet to work since it uses no batteries. You’ll have to deal with the adapter cable hanging from your windshield whenever you mount the device.

Pros/Cons

  • Can be changed to better detect laser signals on highways and city roads
  • Mounts easily on most windshields
  • Has a voice warning option
  • The unit can be powered only through a DC outlet; can’t be used

What’s the Verdict?
If you want a radar detector that has outstanding voice control features and is easy to mount, stick with the Uniden DFR3. You’ll love how it finds signals quickly without burdening you on things that you don’t need to be alerted to.

 

RICHOYY Radar Detector, Voice Prompt Speed, City/Highway Mode Radar Detector for Cars (FCC Certification)

The Richoyy Radar Detector is a good option for people that want something with small dimensions. It’s also the best radar detector under 50, tiny but numerous in capabilities.

Review

Many radar detectors pride themselves on being compact electronic devices, to which most of them are. However, some make this even smaller to ease up transport.

They are products that aren’t always mounted to the same degree as a dashcam. From this, having something like the Richoyy around ensures that you won’t be bothered when the time does come for you to put it inside your pockets.

Highlighted Features

Small dimensions aren’t the only thing that’s good about the Richoyy. Instead of a solid mounting bracket, you can place it on your windshield with provided suction cups.

These are strong enough to cling on to the glass without causing scratches are marks in the process of holding the detector. Even if mild condensation builds up around the suction cups, there’s no need for worrying about it falling when you’re driving and scanning.

What Consumers are Saying

The consensus about the Richoyy describes a detector that has an easy to read display. It’s made for people to see well in light or dark driving conditions. However, some may not be able to hear the voice commands when music is playing; the volume doesn’t get loud enough.

And since no instruction manual is included with the unit, you’ll have to either contact the company or find an informal video if problems arise when assembling it to your vehicle.

Pros/Cons

  • Compact and small, easily fits in the pocket
  • Comes with suction cups for mounting on a windshield
  • The display is bright enough to be read during the day and night
  • Difficult to hear voice alerts over music; no loud enough
  • No instruction manual is included with the detector

What’s the Verdict?

The Richoyy has great features that any driver concerned by getting speeding tickets would love to have around. So long as you don’t listen to your music too loud, it’ll likely meet most of your expectations.

 

 

Whistler CR70 Laser Radar Detector: 360 Degree Protection and Voice Alerts - Black

The Whistler CR70 has the look of a traditional laser detector. It’s made for people that have used such products in the past before but want something with a small chance of churning out false alarms. For this reason, you’ll love the way it works only when you need it to work.

Review

The body of the CR68 is black with red highlights. It’s easy enough for most to make out the dark, and the digital display helps with this as well. The product weighs less than a pound (10.2 ounces, to be exact) so you don’t have to put it too close to your dashboard from fear of it falling after being mounted. Just attach, plug it into your DC outlets, and let the scanning begin.

Highlighted Features

This model has a feature that’s called Traffic Flow Signal Rejection. This reduces the chances of running into other vehicle’s signals and other equipment that’s irrelevant to the purpose of a radar detector. Technically, this can happen with any model but you’ll find that most of the devices being detected are legitimate traffic cams and laser/radar scanners.

What Consumers are Saying

Most consumers liked how the CR68 refrains from picking up signals too close to the equipment that’s being scanned. You won’t find yourself scrambling to reduce your speed from getting alerts at the last minute.

As for response time, this one of the better radars detectors sold online. However, you might get some alerts from cameras housed on the opposite-bound lane of the one that you’re driving. It won’t happen too often but the risk is there.

Pros/Cons

  • False alarms rarely occur, thanks to its Traffic Flow Signal Rejection feature
  • Can detect multiple radar gun types; not exclusive to laser
  • Good response time; doesn’t pick up signals at the last minute
  • May alert to cameras that are on the opposite side of the road (or on a completely different road)

What’s the Verdict?

Try out the Whistler CR70 if you like the idea of a scanner that can pick up numerous radar guns of various types. For people that drive in different cities (each city could have law enforcement that utilizes different radar guns) this is highly recommended.

 

Cobra SPX 900 14 Band High Performance Digital Radar Laser Detector with Extreme Range and VG-2/Spectre/360 Degree Protection

The Cobra SPX 900 is a 14-band laser/radar detector with great attributes and strong scanning abilities. If you like the idea of a detector that can find signals up to a mile away, consider this model for your next purchase. When compared to the brand’s other models it’s also the best cobra radar detector under 100. Let’s see why.

Review

The Cobra is very small and contains easy to learn buttons that can alter the way you receive alerts. If you don’t want to hear the alarm, simply turn it off with the aforementioned button. It’s easy to see what’s going on from the display, whether or not there’s some glare from the sun. And hooking it up to your car’s windshield should take less than five minutes.

Highlighted Features

Many of the features present in the SPX 900 are great but overshadowed by the scanning and detection distance of the product. It will read out any cameras and police nearby (with scanners) up to one mile away.

And for its size, the frame is very dense. You could drop it on the concrete and it wouldn’t likely break. Of course, that doesn’t mean that you should try this out to test it away but it’s a given that the detector will stay with you for a long time.

What Consumers are Saying

The general sentiment regarding the SPX 900 is that the detector is built for highway travel. It does what it’s advertised to do and doesn’t break apart if handled roughly. Some didn’t like it the way it occasionally picks up other radar signals from vehicles on the road, but this wasn’t a common problem for most drivers.

Pros/Cons

  • May pick up signals to one mile away from a user’s vehicle
  • Few false alarms in populated areas
  • Doesn’t incur damages too easy; very durable
  • Could pick up alerts from other drivers using detectors/radar

What’s the Verdict?

If you want a detector that can pick up a traffic cam from a mile away, look into the SPX 900 and see if it suits you over the others shown so far.

 

 

Cobra RAD 250 Laser Radar Detector - Long Range, False Alert Filter, OLED Display

The Cobra RAD 250 with a decent range and great detector speeds. It looks similar to the other Cobra product that was evaluated, and just as dependable. Being that it’s a good inexpensive radar detector for road travel, you’ll love it if you live in a city.

Review

The buttons on the RAD 250 are easy to see and press. They’re outlined in gray and housed next to the small speakers in the middle. Make no mistake, this device can get very loud. IF you listen to a lot of music and need a detector that’ll be distinguishable over the thumping speakers of your car, then try it out for yourself.

Highlighted Features

Lound audio alerts are just a fraction of what this product can do for you on the road. The suction cups are very strong and hold the body in place, no matter how hard of a bump or pothole you hit when driving.

And the digital display showcases large fonts that are easy on the eyes. If you wear corrective lenses or have less than stellar eyesight, the RAD 250 will quickly become your new best friend.

What Consumers are Saying

If there’s anything about the RAD 250 that consumers like the most, it would be the voice alerts. However, this was also a major point of frustration for some, with the alert being described as a little too shrill by some.

For people with sensitive hearing or tinnitus problems, this could become an annoyance. Look into some of the other radar detectors if you know that sharp noises hurt your ears.

Pros/Cons

  • The voice alert gets loud, discernable over highway noise and music
  • It’s suction cups are strong, sticking to the windshield in dry and moist conditions
  • Displays have large fonts that are easy to notice from a distance away
  • The beeping alarm might be a little too shrill for people with sensitive hearing/tinnitus

What’s the Verdict?

The RAD 250 works best for people who drive on the road. Regardless, feel free to take it on a highway but things would work well. You’ll never miss an alert since the volume gets high enough to keep you on your toes.

 

 

Cobra Electronics ESD 777 12-Band Radar Detector

The Cobra ESD 777 is also the best radar detector under 100. Look into it if you want to scan for things other than cameras and speed gauges.

Review

Built as a lightweight and easy to manage the design, the ESD 777 has good detection coverage that spans 360 degrees from the location of your car (or wherever the device is housed). You can set it to maintain scan on cams and speed detectors or change it up to locate other obstacles that you come across on the road and highway.

Perhaps you will be interested in the list of reviews on the best hidden GPS tracking device for cars.

Highlighted Features

If you want to know where road work and other highway/road activities are taking place from ahead of you, the ESD 777 is strongly recommended.

What Consumers are Saying

Many users love the way it finds multiple obstructions on highways but felt like the power cord was a little on the frail side. If you tug it too hard, it might break. Try to be careful when you have it hanging from your windshield, to not accidentally pull on it.

Pros/Cons

  • Has close to a one-mile detecting distance
  • Has an easy to comprehend user manual
  • The power cord feels cheap, as if it could break if tugged

Make the ESD 777 your next vehicle purchase if you like high-quality detectors that are capable of picking up signals put off by other emergency vehicles and equipment on the highway.

 

 

Cobra RAD 350 Laser Radar Detector - Long Range, False Alert Filter, OLED Display, Black

The Cobra RAD 350 is built for people that like voice controls that they can maintain control of.

Review

As you might be aware, similar devices to this one aren’t always noted for this level of customization. Unique tones provide signal strength and band identification so you can keep your eyes on the road and still identify what type of alert is detected.

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Highlighted Features

It has small dimensions and won’t get in the way after you mount to your glass. It fits comfortably on the windshield, recommended to be placed directly below your rearview mirror.

What Consumers are Saying

Very good value for the money.

Pros/Cons

  • Radar uses radio waves which bounce around the environment causing all radar detectors to detect radar in 360°
  • Its small dimensions won’t distract from driving (when mounted)
  • Has a difficult time detecting lasers that are turned on at a close range

What’s the Verdict?

It might not pick up some laser detectors as fast as the other products shown, but will work for traffic cams without any delays.

 

Whistler XTR-335 Real Voice-Alert Radar Detector

The Whistler XTR-335 is the best radar detector, although you wouldn’t think so from looking at a picture of it.

Review

The product looks and feels very strong, as if it could handle being at an extreme temperature without breaking. If you live in a very hot or cold region, it’s safe to say that the XTR-335 won’t break if you accidentally left it in your car for a few hours with the AC or heater turned off

Highlighted Features

This unit has a Pop Mode, something that helps to warm users of radars that are within their vicinity. This will allow you to avoid coming up to radar scans that are too close for you to adjust your speed. Everything from DUI checkpoints to cameras housed under bridges will now be known to you.

What Consumers are Saying

Users loved the small lights that are housed on the detector, a great way for you to see an alert when you have the music on and cannot look directly at the screen. You’ll be one step ahead because of this small but very reliable feature.

Pros/Cons

  • The Pop Mode feature helps alert to unforeseen radar scans
  • Has a battery saver mode that conserves car battery power, cuts off after three hours of inactivity
  • Has red flashers at the top of the device, that flash, good for motorists that play loud music
  • Chances of the detector getting damaged are high if it’s dropped

What’s the Verdict?

Try out the XTR-335 for its physical benefits that’ll help you know what’s coming down the road, without the need of glancing at the digital display too often.

 

 

Cobra Electronics iRAD 900 iRadar Atom Radar Detector

The Cobra Electronics iRAD 900 is a great piece for people that want something a little bit different than a conventional radar detector. Let’s see what it can do for you.

Review

When you first look at the device, you might notice how it has an attachment for smartphone hookup. That’s no mistake. If you use your phone as a dashboard camera or GPS during transit, you can now receive alerts whenever radars are in the presence of the iRAD 900.

Highlighted Features

Because of how it’s designed, the look will be harder for others to see that you’re using a radar detector in your car.

What Consumers are Saying

Although most users have favorable views about the iRAD 900, some experience too frequent false alerts when driving in heavy traffic. You probably wouldn’t want to take this on a long-distance trip, but it does output acceptable and accurate readings on ordinary roads.

Pros/Cons

  • Has an inconspicuous frame that’s stay hidden in plain sight
  • False alerts in crowded locations are likely to happen

What’s the Verdict?

The Cobra iRAD 950 is the best inexpensive radar detector for road travel .

Tips on Choosing Budget Radar Detectors

A good radar detector for the money is one that can find different types of radars and cameras with minimal false alerts. best budget radar detectors under 100 dollarsThe products are shown in the reviews all have unique features that make them worthy of a buy.

But if you want to be sure that you're getting the right brand, always factor in your style of driving and the place you drive the most.

For example, highway drivers would find that the detectors with both voices, digital, and alarms are better at combating the noise in such locations.

Road travel generally has more options for digital display alerts, although you should still consider sound warning if you play your music loud.

Summary

What do you think are the best radar detectors under 100 dollars? Out of those shown, the Uniden DFR1 has the most favorable features and the fewest instances of false alerts.

The others perform great too but some of them (particularly numbers 5-10) are better for specific road conditions and/or driving locations. But you'll be satisfied with whatever brand you pick. Go with the radar detector that you like the most and buy now!