I love helmets, probably more than I love motorcycles! OK, that’s not true, but I do have about 11 helmets at home. They all serve the same purpose, to protect my head and eyes, but I use them for different occasions, and for different bikes. By far, my favorite helmets are made by Shoei. I find them lighter and much better at noise cancelling, which makes bluetooth better with them. But, a Shoei Neotec II costs $799 and the integrated bluetooth system another $299. As much as I like it, one of those is enough!
I recently bought two new helmets, an LS2 Valiant 2 modular ($359), for use with my BMW Grand America and an Icon Variant Pro Dual Sport Adventure Helmet (which ranges $159-$400 depending on seller and color) to use with my HD Pan America when riding off road.
As I have gotten accustomed to riding with bluetooth, I thought of reusing my old Cardo Scala G9 and G9x systems from some older helmets. I have used Cardo Scala for years, and they have proven very reliable and long lasting. They are however, much larger and heavier than newer systems.
A side by side comparison with the new Sena slim SHM10R shows how much technology has improved in the last 7-8 years! I bought a dual pack of the 10R for $300 on Prime day. The original Cardo Scala cost me about $300 for a single. The big difference between the two systems is that Cardo came with AM/FM radio built in, which is a feature I rarely used. Cardo was also voice activated, but that got annoying at times. After I installed the Sena, I was very please with its low profile and the sound of the speakers. Definitely louder than the Cardo!
The pictures above show what the Cardo looked like mounted on another one of my Shoei helmets, as compared to the new Sena on the LS2 and Icon helmets. The old system made it hard to store the helmet in the luggage of my HD Ultra and BMW. The slim Sena does not. Fits great on the side sport bag of the Pan America.
So, bottom line, better tech at better prices and better looking, plus easier to store the helmet without removing the system. Oh, one additional bonus, longer battery life, and the ability to continue talking while charging! The G9 and G9x could not be used while charging!
Overall, a great purchase on both the bluetooth and helmets!