Published on November 7th, 2012 | by Kira0
Cobra Vedetta: Snaking Out Speed Traps
I grew up in the country with a mother who was always running late to everything. She is a funny lady: five feet of nothing and very sweet, but boy does she like to drive with the pedal to the metal! Amazingly, she is not a bad driver and has a pretty good record of avoiding accidents. So, her biggest problem is upsetting law enforcement. She is… well, pretty good at that.
So, when I heard that we were getting the chance to review the Cobra Vedetta SLR 650G radar detector, I was pretty excited, because I have not yet decided on the perfect holiday gift for my mom this year. While I have some qualms with the devices- it’d be nice if they weren’t necessary- I can definitely see how my mother and others can benefit. After all, purchasing a detector can pay for itself with a single ticket that is avoided.
And overall, the Vedetta seems to be pretty impressive- and considering that it’s Cobra’s top-of-the-line model, we had pretty high expectations. We don’t drive much in Manhattan itself, and the recent storm put a crimp in our vehicular travel (if only because gas was impossible to find). But when we do get out of the city, whether with a Zipcar or other rental, we definitely like to stretch out our wings a bit. Installation is a snap- once you have unpacked your new Vedetta the first thing you will want to do is register it and download the “Cobra Updater Program.” This is a very self explanatory process, basically just following prompts off the website. Now you can connect your Vedetta to your computer and have its GPS updated via their Aura database for the latest information on speed traps, red light camera locations, and dangerous intersections. It is probably a good idea to get these updates every month or so. The one big problem with the Cobra Vedetta is that it is only compatible with Windows. As a Mac user I found this very frustrating; luckily my mother has a PC.
Aside from the Vedetta seeming to work well and having the great GPS features, this radar detector has an easy-to-use touchscreen which includes a speedometer on it’s bright and big (2.4in) display. It looks sleek and modern, more like a GPS than a radar detector, and perhaps for good reason. That way, if you do get pulled over, the cop might not notice that you have it. Also, your Vedetta comes with a suction cup mount. This stand can be stuck pretty much anywhere, and is easy to undo and re-attach, helpful if you want to move your device between cars (or take it out while parked to avoid the risk of theft).
We’ve tried other Cobra units before- the iRadar takes the cake for one of the coolest iPhone accessories we’ve seen. But a dedicated unit like the Cobra Vedetta SLR 650G offers quite a few advantages, like lifetime updates of the database- a huge plus and well worth the cost if you’re regularly traveling in areas that have quite a few speed traps. Radar and laser can be hidden or surprise you suddenly, but this device will warn you of the impending trouble before you get caught. Boasting a futuristic, discrete look, the Vedetta’s middle of the line price of $250 seems fair, and my mom should certainly have less tickets after the holidays.