Speed through curves and straights, with the wind in your face. The adrenaline of speed and a unique feeling of freedom, maintaining a link with the outside world, through an intercom for motorcycles.
Travelling on two wheels is all this and much more, including the ability to move with the essentials, with an eye to one’s own safety and that of others.
The latest generations of intercoms have precisely the objective of making the combination of “guidance and communication with the outside world” as safe as possible.
What are intercoms for motorbikes?
These are technological tools that allow the rider to communicate freely (in transmission or reception) with the passenger and possibly with the riders of other bikes using an intercom compatible with theirs.
The latest technologies allow the use of additional services, such as the connection (via Bluetooth system) to the smartphone for sending, rejecting and accepting calls, the connection to the navigator and radio.
Why buy the intercom?
Because during particularly long trips and in general when the bike is used daily, it may be useful to maintain communication with the outside world.
Secure communication. In this sense, motorcycle intercoms are designed to improve the quality of life of motorcyclists, allowing them to travel more comfortably and with more attention to the danger of having to be distracted to shout an indication, an information to the passenger.
Not to be underestimated is the possibility of connecting it to the navigator of the smartphone, avoiding distractions linked to trying to read the directions along the way.
How to choose the intercom for motorcycles
An intercom should be lightweight and comfortable in terms of key usability. It must have a good battery life, capable of lasting up to 7/8 hours in case of frequent use.
It is important to buy it at the time of purchase:
1) check the compatibility with the helmet,
2) check how many intercoms can be connected,
3) check the possibility of use while it is charging,
4) Ensure charging times,
5) note the distance up to which the signal is available (generally a maximum of 1 km and 200 m),
6) verify the maximum speed within which the sound is guaranteed (generally 120 km/h),
7) Make sure of the resistance to atmospheric agents,
8) Read any reviews.
How an intercom works for motorcycles
There are 3 types:
1) acoustic intercoms, i.e. those that allow you to speak through a simple cable/tube that connects the two helmets (pilot/passenger). The voice passes through this tube, without exploiting any type of technology and without the possibility of modulating the volume through the keys.
Cons: the quality of the voice in this intercom could be penalized by wind and external noise. This type of intercom constrains the freedom of movement of both rider and passenger. It is not possible to communicate with other bikes.
Pros: cheap and without power.
2) Wired or flush: these are intercoms connected to a control unit located on the bike. The connection between the control unit and the helmet, where the intercom is placed, is made through one or two wires. This instrumentation is equipped with volume keys.
The defects are: 1) being bound by the wire, 2) the need to pay attention to the risk of cable breakage, 3) not being able to communicate with other bikes. They are powered directly from the motorcycle, so there is no risk of battery exhaustion. When the motorcycle is switched off, the intercoms are also switched off.
3) Bluethooth, that is the evolution of the wire intercom and therefore the latest generation of data transmitters through a wireless network. Through this instrumentation it is possible to communicate with the passenger and other motorcycles, even in conference calls.
These intercoms have a half-cable rechargeable battery that can last for even a day, in case of sporadic use. They can be connected to the phone for sending, rejecting or accepting calls. You can listen to music and receive directions from the navigator, through a GPS system.
At the time of purchase it is advisable to check the reception range of the signal, to understand within what distance you can keep “contact” with other bikes. This type of intercom is among the most purchased also because it allows greater freedom of movement, in addition to the many functions.
How do I mount an intercom?
Regardless of the type, the intercom is mounted on the helmet, also influencing the weight. The sound quality will be better in the intercoms applied under the chin guard, compared to those with external microphone.
At the time of purchase, depending on the type chosen, the following must be fitted: the articular, the microphone and any control unit.
What functions does it guarantee?
It depends on the model and the technology.
The best intercoms have:
1) Send/Receive/Reject button;
2) GPS system for connection to maps and location;
3) reception and sharing of music also with the passenger.
Some types have a system that guarantees a clear voice, through the cleaning of external noises (wind, traffic, etc.).
Is it dangerous to receive/send calls or instructions from the navigator?
The goal of purchasing a motorcycle intercom is to be able to communicate or listen to directions, in full compliance with the Highway Code, without endangering their own life and that of others. Using an intercom means communicating intelligently, without causing distractions.
What is the cost of doing this?
On the market you can find intercoms of Chinese invoice from 15 euros, up to the top of the range that cost several hundred euros.
The choice of intercom depends on many factors: frequency of use of the bike, budget and need.
If the bike is used daily, then the best solution is to buy a quality product, the cost of which will be amortized over time, from a serenity in driving the vehicle with greater security.
Safety means avoiding mobile phones stuck in the helmet as still seen in the streets of the city or communicate with gestures, risking distractions.
Intercoms with the Bluetooth system require updating via PC connection.
This instrument also has a shutdown function for those situations in which you prefer to focus on driving, for example on particularly complex routes.