Escort Passport 8500 X50 Black Radar Detector Review

Radar detectors are electronic devices usually installed in motored vehicles to prevent drivers from over-speeding and to check if traffic police are monitoring the vehicle’s speed using a radar gun.

  • Speeding above the limits is reckless and to keep this in check, several consumers scout the market for a reliable and convenient radar detector.
  • The Escort group is a reputed brand for radar detectors in the market. The product in review, the Escort Passport 8500X50, black radar detector is their most popular innovation in radar detector technology.
  • It is being marketed as a breakthrough product which comes in a convenient ready to use format. The Escort Passport 8500X50 can also be customised to suit individual driving preferences.

The Passport 8500X50 is a successful product from the Escort group because it comes with a very good range and reliable accuracy. It continues to be a favourite pick because of several excellent and effective features.

Best Features of the Escort Passport 8500 X50

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  • The Escort Passport 8500X50 is sleek and comes fitted with a travel case and a convenient SmartCord.
  • The full 360degree radar and laser detection gives high performance and comes with an optional ZR4 Laser Shifter. The Escort 8500 has a V-tuned radar receiver which enables long range warning for all radars.

The long-range sensors offer warning at the needed times and the superior off-axis protection helps detect signals at various angles

  • The Escort Passport 8500 comes with a bright blue LED display which is easy to read and displays the type and strength of a signal received. The Ultra-Bright Matrix Display uses 280 individual ultra-bright LEDs to display crystal-clear information for alerts, signal strength and text.
  • There is an ExpertMeter option which identifies and tracks nearly eight radar signals and displays the individual strength of each signal with individual columns of LED lights.
  • Another noteworthy feature of the Passport 8500X50 is their unique Traffic Signal Rejection (TSR) software which rejects traffic sensors making it a very convenient product to own and is quiet in operation.

The TSR feature was thoughtfully introduced to reduce the number of false alarms due to the traffic measurement equipment installed in highways and side streets where traffic excesses are usually suspected.

  • The Escort Passport 8500 comes with Auto Sensitivity Mode, which is patented can intelligently identify real threats from other radar sources.
  • The Mute and AutoMute feature in the Escort Passport 8500 is another unique feature which is patented and spells convenience because it automatically reduces the volume level during an alert and reduces unwanted disturbances when there is a brush with long range radars.

The best benefit of this Mute AutoMute feature is it reduces the number of irritating false alerts in signal packed locations.

The users receive an audible signal for the first alert. The subsequent alerts are only visually displayed if the alert is of the same band.

  • There are three high-resolution meter modes in the Passport 8500X50 which ensures three different types of display like the standard bar graph, exclusive expert meter (distance to target strength), and SpecDisplay (band information) which is exclusive to the Escort detector alone.

The Escort Passport 8500, because of such unique features gives an improved performance.

The new advanced EZ-programming ensures that this ready to use technology can also be personalised to suit your driving comfort by adjusting and tweaking

  • Power-On indication and sequence
  • Meter Type
  • adjusting the AutoMute option
  • brightness level which includes a full dark mode
  • audio tones and
  • selectable radar and laser bands.
  • Download the User Manual at: [PDF] 8500 X50 Manual – ESCORT Radar

The Passport 8500 comes with a city mode sensitivity. It comes with an owner’s manual which ensures that you put this device to it most optimum use.

The above features reveal why the Escort 8500 is a leading product among other radar detectors in the market. The advantages of the product are not just its power-packed thoughtful features, but also that it is extremely convenient to use.

The box holds the radar device, which can be taken out, plugged in and is ready for use without any need to configure the settings every time and does not require any special calibrations.

There are some drawbacks to the Escort Passport 8500. The unique selling points of the product are many in number, whereas the cons are fewer and nevertheless cannot be ignored. It is worth looking at some of the negative features of the Passport 8500X50, black.

The important negative points are:

  • A major drawback is said to be the longevity and sustainability of the device.
  • There is also the complaint of over-heating of the device when used for long-distance travels.
  • A major complaint for the Escort Passport 8500 is that it lacks user friendly features. Though, the device is packed with high performance features, it is a slightly complicated device to understand and operate.
  • The Mute AutoMute feature, which switches to visual alerts on the LED display after the first audio alert, is considered a drawback by many. The audio alerts are difficult to hear at times and require the driver to refer to the video alerts everytime a signal is detected.
  • There are newer models with better features claim the critics. The Escort Passport 8500, is found lacking in some features that are available with the radar detectors which come with a built-in GPS.
  • This product lacks the alert features for non-radar threats like speed cameras and speed traps. It does not work well in detecting red-light cameras also.

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The Advantages over Competition:

The Escort Passport 8500X50 is touted to be the best radar detector in the market and provides a set of unique and best-selling features that are high on performance. There are a few other brands and products which use S7 or M4 platforms that seem to have the same features with improved functionalities like the 9500 series.

The Escort Passport 8500 is cheaper than the Valentine One and is a good buy because the Passport 8500X50 is above average in its radar band sensitivity. The K-band and X-band signals can be picked up even a mile away and the ka-band signals from more than a mile.

However, when compared to its competitors, it does provide a lot of annoying false alerts. The Valentine series seems to score a little more on this front. The Passport 8500X50 however outperforms its competitors when it is switched to the most-filtered city mode. In addition to the highway and city modes, the passport 8500X50 also has a select automated filter which reduces the number of false alerts

The Escort Passport 8500 seems to have a wider field of view when compared to that of its competitors. The Passport 8500X50 may offer a lesser range of features when compared to the Valentine and lacks the directional arrows that all Valentine devices possess.

However, the Escort 8500*50 comes with warnings which are easier and clearer to interpret and can be personalised to accommodate the driving conditions and driver’s preferences. At a lesser price than the Valentine or any other radar devices in the same range the Passport 8500*50 is a good value for money product.


With its sleek design and thoughtful features, the Escort Passport 8500 X50 is one of the best and economically priced radar detectors in the market.

The device delivers what it promises. It is good in detecting radar and laser signals. The Escort Passport 8500 X50 has always remained a popular choice even after the arrival of newer brands and products. It remains the strongest performer in its price range.

If you are looking for reliability, decent performance features with the convenience of customisation then the Escort Passport 8500 X50 could easily fit your bill. Get the most recommended TOP 5 list of radars HERE

Jimmy M.
Escort Passport 8500X50


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