Sena Adult 5S
Are you tired of trying to communicate with your fellow riders while on the road? Do you want to stay connected with your riding group, even in remote areas? A motorcycle communication system could be the solution you need.
According to recent statistics, motorcycle communication systems have seen a significant rise in popularity over the past few years, with an estimated 5.9% CAGR growth rate from 2021 to 2028.
These systems provide riders with a hands-free way to communicate with each other, listen to music, and even make phone calls while on the road.
With the right intercom system for a motorcycle, you can improve your riding experience and stay connected with fellow riders like never before.
Why Use a Motorcycle Helmet Intercom
- A motorcycle helmet intercom is an excellent tool for staying connected while on the road.
- It allows for accessible communication between riders, enabling you to coordinate your riding group and share experiences.
- Intercoms also enable you to communicate with a passenger on the back of your motorcycle, enhancing the overall experience of the ride.
- With an intercom system, you can listen to music or take phone calls while riding, making long journeys more enjoyable and less boring.
- Intercoms also provide added safety, allowing you to hear essential sounds such as emergency vehicle sirens or warning signals from other riders.
- The latest intercom systems offer advanced features like noise-canceling helmet technology, voice recognition, and long-range connectivity.
- A high-quality intercom system can enhance your riding experience and make you safer.
What To Consider Before Deciding To Buy Motorcycle Communication Systems？
Here are some essential factors to consider before purchasing a motorcycle communication system.
1. Ease of Use
You want an easy-to-install and operate communication system. Look for a system that doesn’t require a lot of complicated wiring and comes with easy-to-understand instructions.
A straightforward helmet intercom system will make your ride more enjoyable and less stressful.
The range of the communication system is also essential.
You want a system that has an excellent range to stay connected with your fellow riders. Look for a system that can maintain a connection over long distances, especially if you plan on riding in remote areas.
3. Number of Riders
Consider the number of riders you plan to communicate with.
Some communication systems are designed for two riders, while others accommodate four or more. Choose a system that can support the number of riders you plan to ride with.
Ensure your chosen system can connect to your phone and other devices. You can listen to music, make phone calls, or receive GPS directions while riding.
Ensure that your chosen system has Bluetooth connectivity and is compatible with your devices.
5. Sound Quality
The sound quality of the communication system is critical. Choose a system that has clear audio quality, even at high speeds. Look for a system with noise-canceling features to reduce wind and road noise.
6. Fit Your Budget
Motorcycle communication systems can range from affordable to expensive.
Determine how much you are willing to spend before making a purchase. Choose a system that fits your budget while still meeting your needs.
7. Battery Life
Battery life is another essential factor to consider. You don’t want a communication system that will die in the middle of your ride. Look for a system with a long battery life that can be easily recharged.
Consider the weather conditions you will be riding in. Choose a weatherproof system that can withstand rain, snow, and other extreme weather conditions.
How Do Motorcycle Bluetooth Intercoms Work
Motorcycle Bluetooth intercoms are communication systems designed to allow riders to communicate with one another while on the road. These intercoms use Bluetooth technology to connect to your smartphone or another Bluetooth-enabled device.
Once connected, you can use the intercom to talk to other riders or to listen to music or GPS instructions.
The intercom system typically consists of a control unit mounted on the motorcycle’s helmet, a set of speakers, and a microphone placed inside the helmet.
When you want to communicate with another rider, you press a button on the control unit to activate the intercom.
The system then uses Bluetooth to connect to the other rider’s intercom, allowing you to communicate with each other.
In addition to communication, Bluetooth intercoms can also be used to listen to music or receive GPS instructions.
You can connect your smartphone or GPS device to the intercom system via Bluetooth, listen to music, or receive turn-by-turn directions through the speakers.
How Do You Talk to Another Motorcycle Rider or Pillion
If you’re riding with a group or your passenger, communicating with them is crucial for safety and enjoyment. Using an intercom system is the easiest way to do it.
These systems use Bluetooth technology to connect to your phone or other devices, allowing you to make and receive calls, listen to music, and, most importantly, talk to other riders.
Both riders need to have a device installed on their helmets that connects wirelessly to use the intercom. Then, press the button on the device to talk. You can use it to give instructions, ask for directions, or chat while cruising.
What About Bluetooth Intercoms For Group Rides
Consider a Bluetooth intercom system if you’re planning a group ride on your motorcycles. However, it’s essential to remember that Bluetooth has limitations.
The distance and number of users that can be connected are restricted, which might not work for larger groups or long-distance rides.
Other factors like weather and terrain can also affect connectivity. It’s worth exploring alternative options like radio-based intercom systems that offer a more extended range and connectivity for a seamless group riding experience.
7 Best Intercom Systems for Motorcycles in 2023
Here’s the rundown of the top bike intercom system available in the market;
1. Sena Spider ST1 Mesh Intercom Headset
If you are a motorcycle enthusiast looking for an intercom system that can revolutionize your riding experience, the Sena Spider ST1 Mesh Intercom Headset is what you need.
During a ride through the Appalachian Mountains, the long-range connectivity of this intercom system allowed me to warn my fellow riders about a roadblock ahead. This made me truly appreciate its reliability in real-world conditions.
What sets this intercom system apart is its use of mesh radio technology, which eliminates the need for traditional Bluetooth-powered radio intercoms.
This means the connection between the device, your smartphone, GPS, and your motorcycle is powered directly, resulting in a more reliable and efficient connection.
Compared to the Cardo PACKTALK Edge, which also performed well but suffered in heavy rain due to its lack of water resistance, the Sena Spider ST1 proved superior in offering a consistently strong and reliable connection.
But what exactly is mesh radio technology?
It’s an outgrowth of military radio technology, which means it has a repeater-like function that extends its range and signal strength. This translates to a range of up to 5 miles or 8 km, depending on terrain and other factors.
The Sena Spider ST1 Mesh Intercom Headset is also incredibly easy, thanks to its single-button press and jog-dial interface.
You won’t have to fumble around with complicated settings or menus while on the go.
But the real selling point of this intercom system is the Audio Multitasking feature, which allows you to listen to music, take phone calls, and hear GPS directions simultaneously.
This is a game-changer for those who want to stay connected while on the road.
When I discovered the Audio Multitasking feature, it was a revelatory moment. Suddenly, juggling between my playlist, incoming calls, and GPS instructions became seamless, enhancing my overall riding experience.
And if you ride in a group, the Group Mesh feature can support up to 24 participants in a private group. This makes it easy to stay in touch with your riding buddies and coordinate your rides.
Reasons to Buy
Reasons to Avoid
2. Sena Adult 5S Motorcycle Bluetooth
The Sena Adult 5S Motorcycle Bluetooth system is a follow-up to the popular SMH5 and has some significant improvements.
During a weekend ride, I had to switch helmets and realized that there were no extra adhesive pads provided. Although the Sena Adult 5S performed excellently, the lack of spare pads made it a little inconvenient to transfer the system.
The cable that joins the bracket is slim enough to be efficiently run under the skull cap, and the wired microphone is also very slim, making it perfect for full-face lids.
The HD speakers are optimized for audio quality, ensuring you can hear your music or phone calls on the road.
The built-in LCD screen displays information such as battery life and connected devices.
Additionally, the Sena Adult 5S includes voice commands, making it easy to control the system while keeping your hands on the handlebars.
I was particularly impressed with the built-in LCD screen. It was a breeze to check battery status and connected devices, which added an extra layer of convenience and made me feel more in control while riding.
The system is also straightforward to use and set up.
One downside is that no spare adhesive pads are supplied for mounting, so you may need to purchase additional pads if you need to move the system to a different helmet.
The Sena Adult 5S held up well during my ride through twisty mountain roads. The reliable Bluetooth connectivity remained stable, making it easier for me to focus on the ride knowing that the system had my back.
Compared to other brands, the Sena Adult 5S stands out for its slim, easy-to-use design, voice commands, and built-in LCD screen. It also pairs seamlessly with other Sena devices, and the neat little LCD on the Sena shows that a headset is linked.
One of the important questions users ask is, can Sena connect to Cardo? The Sena Adult 5S will easily connect to Cardo systems.
Reasons to Buy
Reasons to Avoid
3. Cardo PACKTALK Edge Motorcycle Bluetooth
This new addition to Cardo’s Packtalk line offers an array of impressive features that make it stand out from other intercom systems on the market.
The most notable feature of the Packtalk Edge is its waterproof design. This feature is a must-have for any motorcycle intercom system since you never know when you’ll get caught in the rain.
The Packtalk Edge also attaches to the helmet magnetically, a convenient way to keep the device secured while riding.
When it comes to sound quality, the Packtalk Edge doesn’t disappoint.
The 40mm speakers produce loud, clear, and high-quality audio that makes communicating with your fellow riders easy. Additionally, the volume levels can be tuned independently for phone calls, ensuring you never miss an important call on the road.
Dynamic Mesh Technology
Another feature of the Packtalk Edge is its dynamic mesh technology, which enables riders to communicate with each other seamlessly. This technology allows up to 15 riders to connect to the same mesh network, making it an ideal choice for group rides.
The Cardo PACKTALK Edge also offers voice recognition sensitivity adjustment, a nice feature for those who prefer hands-free operation.
And if you are looking for a quick charge, the USB-C charger will give you roughly two hours of talk time.
Compared to other Bluetooth intercom systems for motorcycles, the Cardo PACKTALK Edge is a top contender. Its impressive features and user-friendly design make it an excellent choice for anyone needing a reliable communication system while riding.
Reasons to Buy
Reasons to Avoid
4. Cardo PTB00040 – Best For Riding in Group
As an avid motorcyclist, I always seek ways to enhance my riding experience.
I was excited to try out the Cardo PTS00001 – PACKTALK Intercom System. After testing it out on a few rides, this intercom system is worth considering.
The sound quality is optimized for a helmet, which means you can hear your riding partners loud and clear, even on the highway.
When I compared the Cardo PTS00001 with the Sena Adult 5S, the Cardo system shined in terms of group interactivity. It can connect with up to 15 riders, while the Sena system has a smaller range. However, the Sena Adult 5S was slightly more user-friendly with its voice commands.
And if you’re like me and enjoy listening to music on a motorcycle, the Cardo PTS00001 doesn’t disappoint in that department either.
My first impression of the ‘Hey Siri’ and ‘OK Google’ features was a blend of awe and relief. Controlling music or making calls without letting go of the handlebars felt liberating.
The “Hey Siri” and “OK Google” voice activation features are also excellent.
You can easily make phone calls or text messages without taking your hands off the handlebars. And if you’re riding with a group, the intercom system allows you to communicate with up to 15 riders within a range of 1600 meters.
I interviewed a fellow rider named Morris, who had used the Cardo system for over six months. Morris shared that the Cardo Connect App had made long rides more manageable and enjoyable for him. His testimony added weight to my own positive experiences.
What I Liked The Most?
The iOS and Android Cardo Connect App gives you full remote control ability over the intercom system.
You can adjust the volume, access your phone’s voice assistant, and personalize your settings. And if you like to switch between different helmets, you will be happy to know that the Cardo PTS00001 is compatible with all helmet makes and models.
When it comes to microphones, the Cardo PTS00001 has you covered. It has two mics—one for full-face helmets and a boom mic for open-face and modular lids.
This ensures you get the best possible sound quality, no matter what type of helmet you wear.
It may not be the cheapest option on the market, but it’s a solid investment for anyone who wants to enhance their riding experience.
Compared to other intercom systems I’ve tried, the Cardo PTS00001 is one of the best. It’s easy to use, offers excellent sound quality, and has many features that make it worth the investment.
Reasons to Buy
Reasons to Avoid
5. Cardo PTS00001 – PACKTALK Bluetooth
As a motorcycle enthusiast, finding a reliable rider-to-rider communication system is crucial for an enjoyable and safe ride.
After trying out various intercom systems, I recently came across the Cardo PTS00001 – PACKTALK Intercom System, and it has completely exceeded my expectations.
With an effective range of up to 1.2 km and the ability to connect with up to 15 people, this system is perfect for group rides.
In addition to the impressive range, the Cardo PTS00001 offers an 8 km Intercom range in a group, making it an ideal choice for larger group rides.
The DMC Intercom Technology and Conference Mode allows seamless communication between riders, ensuring everyone is on the same page throughout the ride.
The Intercom-to-mobile and Private Chat features are also a great addition, allowing for communication with non-riders or private conversations with a fellow rider.
The Closed 1:1 conversations are crystal clear and eliminate the need to shout or strain to hear over the noise of the road.
Compared to other rider-to-rider communication systems, the Cardo PTS00001 stands out for its reliable connection and easy-to-use interface.
It’s also incredibly durable and can withstand harsh weather conditions, ensuring it lasts for years.
Reasons to Buy
Reasons to Avoid
6. Sena 30K Motorcycle Bluetooth Headset
If you’re looking for a reliable intercom system for your motorcycle, the 30K Motorcycle Bluetooth Headset from Sena is worth considering.
As the second-tier option in the Sena model lineup, this system comes with a range of features that make it a standout product in the market of motorcycle intercom headsets.
The most impressive features of the 30K system are the two modes of Mesh.
This allows you to connect with other riders even when you’re outside of Bluetooth range.
The first time I activated Mesh mode, it felt like I had unlocked a new level of group riding. Suddenly, distance wasn’t a concern, and that sense of unity added a lot to our journey.
And with the Mesh 2.0 Intercom range that can be extended up to 8 km (5 miles), you can stay connected with your group for long-distance rides.
During a 500-mile ride, the Sena 30K stood up to the test of varied weather conditions, proving that my investment was well-founded and tested in the real world.
The system lets up to 6 people connect at once, ensuring everyone can stay in touch.
Additionally, the system lets you create a closed network of 30K headsets, which can be especially useful for large group rides.
With this feature, you can unite your group head-to-tail in a self-healing network, ensuring everyone stays connected, and no one gets lost.
The Sena 30K also comes with the brand’s premium HD motorcycle helmet speakers, providing clear and high-quality audio. And with Audio Multitasking, you can even have an intercom conversation while listening to music or navigation instructions.
Reasons to Buy
Reasons to Avoid
7. Sena SMH10R Low Profile Motorcycle Headset
This Bluetooth version intercom device is designed for low-profile motorcycle helmets and is easy to install using the included 3M double-sided adhesive. The control unit features enough wire length to mount it conveniently on your helmet.
Additionally, the universal intercom feature allows you to connect with riders using other brands of intercoms.
While the Sena SMH10R doesn’t have the latest mesh group intercom feature, it does have Auto Multitasking, which allows you to seamlessly switch between tasks like listening to music and taking phone calls without interrupting your conversations with other riders.
It also has a four-way conference intercom capability, which is great for group rides.
One thing to note is that the + and — buttons on the control unit are raised, and there are raised ridges on each side of the LED, making it easy to operate the device even with gloves on.
This thoughtful design element shows that Sena understands the needs of motorcycle riders.
It offers excellent connectivity, easy operation, and valuable features like Auto Multitasking and four-way conference intercom capability.
While it may not have the latest mesh group intercom feature, it more than makes up for it with its other capabilities.
Reasons to Buy
Reasons to Avoid
How Will You Mount Your Motorcycle Intercom?
If you’re considering purchasing an intercom system for touring bikes, one crucial factor is how you’ll mount it. Various mounting options are available, depending on the brand and model of the intercom.
Some intercom systems come with clamp mounts that can be easily attached to the handlebars, while others require adhesive mounts that can be placed on the helmet.
Some intercoms also have universal mounts that can be used with different helmets.
When comparing different brands, it’s essential to consider the ease of mounting and the mount’s stability. Look for intercom systems with sturdy mounts that won’t vibrate or loosen while riding.
Additionally, some intercom systems have wireless capabilities that eliminate the need for mounting altogether. These systems typically use Bluetooth version to connect to your phone or other devices.
Motorcycle Intercom Features to Look for
Here are some key features to look for:
- Intercom Range: Look for an intercom system with a long, so you can stay in contact with your fellow riders even if you get separated on the road.
- Sound Quality: Sound quality is essential for clear communication, especially at high speeds. Ensure the intercom system has noise cancellation features to reduce wind and road noise.
- Wireless Technology: Bluetooth technology is commonly used in intercom systems, but some systems may also use other wireless technologies like Mesh. Mesh systems allow riders to connect in a network, making it easier to maintain a connection in larger groups.
- Battery: The battery life of the intercom system is essential, especially for long-distance rides. Ensure the battery life is sufficient for your needs, and consider a system with a fast charging feature.
- Voice Control/Hands-Free: Hands-free communication is crucial while riding, so look for an intercom system with voice-control features to keep your hands on the handlebars.
- Number of Connections: Consider the number of connections the intercom system can handle. If you ride with a larger group, you may need a system connecting with more riders.
- GPS: Some intercom systems come with built-in GPS navigation features. This can be helpful for riders who travel to new places often and need directions on the go.
- Waterproofing: Ensure the intercom system is waterproof or water-resistant so you don’t have to worry about the system getting damaged in the rain.
Different Types of Motorcycle Intercom Systems
GMRS Intercom Systems GMRS (General Mobile Radio Service) intercom systems use a dedicated frequency band to transmit voice and data.
They offer excellent range and sound quality, making them ideal for riders who need to stay connected over long distances.
FRS Intercom Systems FRS (Family Radio Service) intercom systems are similar to GMRS but operate on a different frequency band.
They have a shorter range but are more affordable and easier to use, making them a popular choice for casual riders.
FM Intercom Systems FM (Frequency Modulation) intercom systems use radio waves to transmit voice and data. They offer good sound quality and are compatible with most open-face helmets.
Bluetooth version intercom systems use Bluetooth technology to connect riders and their devices. They offer excellent sound quality and range and are compatible with most helmets, including open-face helmets.
Which is better: Wired vs. wireless Motorcycle Intercom
The debate between wired and wireless options is ongoing regarding motorcycle intercoms for group riding.
Wired intercoms are known for their reliable connection and consistent sound quality, making them popular among serious riders.
However, the downside is that they can be cumbersome to set up and use, requiring cords and cables to connect riders.
Wireless intercoms, on the other hand, offer more freedom and flexibility. They are easy to set up and use without cords or cables.
They also allow riders to move around more freely without the restrictions of wires.
The drawback of wireless intercoms is that they can suffer from interference or signal loss, which can impact the quality of the connection.
Ultimately, the choice between wired and wireless motorcycle intercoms comes from personal preference and riding style.
A wired intercom may be the better option if you prioritize reliability and consistency.
But if you value freedom and ease of use, a wireless intercom may be the way.
Intercom Systems For Motorcycle FAQs
Motorcycle helmet communications use Bluetooth or mesh technology to connect with other riders or devices.
The communication system is usually integrated into the helmet, including speakers and a microphone.
Mesh technology is generally better than Bluetooth for motorcycle helmet communications as it allows for a more significant number of riders to connect and communicate with each other without the need for a direct line of sight.
Yes, you can listen to music on a motorcycle through a helmet communication system that supports audio streaming.
However, it’s essential to ensure that you can still hear traffic and other environmental sounds to maintain safety while riding.
The best communication system for a motorcycle helmet depends on personal preference and needs. Some popular brands include Sena, Cardo, and Schuberth.
Motorcycle intercoms can be worth it if you frequently ride with others and need to communicate while on the road. They can also be helpful for GPS navigation and hands-free phone calls.
Intercom systems for motorcycles have become a crucial communication tool for riders.
With the advancement of technology, these devices have greatly improved the riding experience by providing precise and reliable communication with fellow riders, passengers, and even GPS systems.
The Cardo PTS00001 – PACKTALK Bluetooth and Sena 30K Motorcycle Bluetooth Headset are excellent options for anyone needing a high-quality intercom system. Both are equipped with advanced features and are easy to use.
Whether you are a seasoned rider or a newbie, investing in a reliable intercom system is necessary.
Have you used any of these intercom systems for your motorcycle?
What was your experience like?