Picking the Right Motorcycle Headset
For many motorcycle riders, the appeal of motorcycles is in the real sense of freedom, of just you and the highway, but there may come a time when you want to be able to communicate with other riders, a passenger or just enjoy some good road music.
The answer is a high quality motorcycle headset, which provides you with the communications you’ll need, in crisp, clear sound. There are many headsets that provide static free sound and reception, and some now include Bluetooth as well.
Depending on the type of headset you need and the features you want, you’ll find there are basic headsets of simple tubes all the way up to serious electronic components that enhance the sound. Older designs are usually less expensive and are not dependent on a separate battery or power source, so you won’t have to worry about losing communications before you reach your destination. These systems are very basic and include a microphone that’s placed near your mouth and an earpiece that receives transmissions; the advantages are no batteries that might die and no electronic components that might go on the fritz.
A wired headset is a step up from the tubes and allows both the passenger and the driver to be connected to a central unit through a wiring system. The sound from this type of headset is usually much more clean and can be raised or lowered for each person, though the wires that connect the system to the bike need to be connected and disconnected every time you step on or off the bike. Wired headsets can also be used to talk to other bikers.
The wires for the earpiece and microphone are placed along your arm and then plugged into the appropriate jack on the bike. The unit for sending messages is attached to a belt or waistband, just like a standard cell phone case. Wired headsets will work with either open faced or closed helmets, but for the best sound, you should make sure it comes with noise canceling technology.
Before you buy any system, you should try on the earpieces and system you’re considering just to be sure that it’s comfortable enough for you to wear on the road. A less expensive model may be a good buy if you will only be using it on just a few occasions during days with great weather.
For those who plan on using the system more regularly or in less than perfect driving conditions, look for a system that is waterproof. Among the options you’ll have to choose from are whether you want one or two earpieces, or to add voice activation, which automatically turns the system off if no one is speaking.