Half Face vs. Full Face
Before you start shopping, it’s important to understand the difference between full-face and half-face motorcycle intercoms. Full-face helmets tend to be the most common on the road, but lots of riders prefer using a half-face helmet along with goggles and a face mask to help block the wind and all the debris spreading through the air.
Full-face helmets wrap around the person’s entire face. The intercom is then clipped to the bottom of the helmet, so the person can speak freely.
Half-face helmet intercoms work a bit differently. The helmet only covers the head, so you’ll need to attach a boom microphone to make sure the system captures your voice.
Both systems come with speakers that fit into your ears, so you can hear everything the other person is saying.
When searching for a communication system, you need to make sure that the kit is compatible with your existing motorcycle safety equipment. You should be able to search for a Bluetooth motorcycle helmet by make and model. If you use different kinds of helmets, find a device that comes with a universal mount, so you don’t have to buy more than one device.
The best motorcycle communication systems use Bluetooth technology to wirelessly transmit audio across short distances — usually a max of 30 feet. You can use this device to quickly connect to your phone or the other riders around you when traveling in a group.
However, make sure your device comes with what’s known as dynamic mesh communication (DMC) to keep everyone in the group connected. This technology creates a direct link between you and every other rider in your group, so you don’t have to keep refreshing the device if someone leaves the group.
Adjustable Boom Mic
Make sure the attachable boom microphone is completely adjustable. You should be able to choose where you mount the mic, so it doesn’t obstruct your view of the road. Keep the boom outside your line of sight.
You should also be able to adjust the length of the microphone. If it is too long or short, the system may have trouble picking up your voice over the sound of your motorcycle.
There’s no point in using a Bluetooth motorcycle helmet unless it comes with decent sound quality. The included speakers should come from a reputable brand, such as JBL , so you can hear everything the other person is saying. If the manufacturer doesn’t tell you where the speakers are from, it’s usually a sign they aren’t worth your money.
The speakers should fit comfortably in your ear, without canceling out the other sounds around you. The conversation or music shouldn’t distract you from what’s happening on the road.
The road is bound to get messy from time to time, but that shouldn’t affect your motorcycle communication system. The device should be completely waterproof to keep moisture at bay, including your own sweat. There’s always a chance you might drop the device on the side of the road if you need to make an adjustment. The equipment should be able to withstand the impact without breaking apart. That doesn’t mean you should treat your intercom like a soccer ball. Find a system made with strong, high-quality materials that will hold up in any condition.
Using a motorcycle communication system is about more than just listening to music and chatting with friends. You may need to depend on this equipment in the event of an emergency. The device should stay securely attached in a crash, so you can quickly access your phone and call for help. Keep these tips in mind when comparing different devices online.