Last updated: 16 October 2022
Come to think of it, I’m a bit of a miserable tyke. I’m not antisocial, nor do I struggle with social interaction. I just don’t really like anyone!
So as I’m sure you can imagine, the last thing I want is for someone to break the solitude of my ride in the mountains by uninvitedly bursting into my eardrum.
As much as I enjoy the company of the people I’m riding with, I don’t want them invading my cochlea with whatever crap they read on Facebook last night.
But motorcycle Bluetooth headsets aren’t just about chatting with your riding buddies. Far from it.
Because despite not wanting to talk to people, I use mine almost constantly. I use it mainly for GPS voice directions when I’m in the unknown. But I can also accept phone calls, listen to music, or enjoy whatever book I have on Audible.
Whether it’s for navigation, rider communication, listening to music, or keeping in touch with the outside world, motorcycle Bluetooth headsets have become an essential part of our riding.
So without further ado, let’s dive in. For the purpose of this post, we have ranked these motorcycle Bluetooth headsets based on price:
- Low-Cost – up to £100
- Mid-Range – £100 – £200
- Premium – £200+
Motorcycle Bluetooth Headsets: Overall Winners
Top 3 Low-Cost Motorcycle Bluetooth Headsets
For the purpose of this post, ‘low-cost’ is up to £100.
As you’d expect, these headsets may lack some of the all-singing and all-dancing features of those in the premium range. But that’s okay, because the cost is lower, too.
For the price, low-cost Bluetooth headsets are generally okay for everyday use. In fact, I’ve spent most of my riding career with budget headsets, and they’ve always been adequate.
The biggest problem we found with headsets in the budget range is the clarity of communication at high speed.
But if you’re not planning on having many conversions on the autobahn, these budget headsets are a worthy option.
Best Low-Cost Headset: Sena SMH5
Find the Sena SMH5 on:
For us, the Sena SMH5 is for riders who have already dabbled with cheap headsets off eBay and are now ready to take the plunge into ‘proper’ Bluetooth headsets.
This entry-level Sena does exactly what most ‘everyday’ riders want it to do. It doesn’t have the look-at-me features of the more expensive Sena’s, but it’s uncomplicated, effortless, and functional.
It can connect up to four riders, but only two can communicate at any one time.
As with some of the more premium Sena’s, the SMH5 also comes with Advanced Noise Control technology to reduce background noise when conversing or listening to your tunes.
In short, it’s a good little system for those who want something better than the eBay specials but aren’t quite ready to shell out £500.
Worthy Mention: Ejeas V6 Pro
Find the Ejeas V6 Pro on:
In our original post for 2021, we recommended the Ejeas V6. For 2022, the updated version, the V6 Pro, takes the humble headset up a notch.
You can now connect to up to 6 riders – although you can still only talk to one other person at a time.
There is also a larger battery which now gives you 12 hours of talk time – more than enough for most people on a day’s ride.
All-in-all, a bargain at around £56 for a set.
Worthy Mention: Freedconn T-Com
Find the Freedconn T-Com on:
I rode with one of these for years and never had any issues with them. Granted, they’re not great at high speeds, and the audio quality won’t blow you away. But it does what you would expect – nothing more.
It allows 3-way communication that works up to a range of 0.5 miles. And rather than little buttons, the functionalities (such as volume, skip track etc.) work off a wheel.
I don’t know if it’s supposed to be waterproof, but I never had any issues with water ingress in all my years of riding with them.
Lastly, all of my Freedconn’s connected seemingly to any other motorcycle Bluetooth headset.
Top 3 Mid-Range Motorcycle Bluetooth Headsets
Onwards we move to the mid-range headsets in our list.
Whilst low-cost radios are perfect for everyday use, these mid-range headsets offer more features. They provide better sound, noise cancellation technology, and better waterproofing capabilities.
At the top of this post, I joked that rider-to-rider communication isn’t really my thing. But maybe it is significant for you.
If you ride or tour in groups and enjoy a bit of inter-rider by-play along the route, you’ll be much better off with a mid-range headset.
All in all, these headsets offer higher specifications, are great for group rides, and are better for riders who want more than the basics from their unit.
Best Midrange Headset: Interphone Tour
Find the Interphone Tour on:
If you’re after a no-nonsense headset with oodles of features and durability, look no further than the Interphone Tour.
Seeing as though there are only 24 hours in a day, you’ll never run out of conversation thanks to the I4’s 20-hour talk time. And even if you do, you can fast-charge it from 0-80% in an hour.
It has a 4-way intercom system, FM radio, and the ability to connect to any Bluetooth device. Its standby time is a mind-boggling 1,000 hours.
If you enjoy riding long tours with a pillion or as part of a group, this unit would be a great choice.
With its advanced noise control to block ambient noise, Interphone’s flagship headset punches way above its weight. And at a very reasonable price, too.
Worthy Mention: Cardo Freecom 4+
Find the Cardo Freecom 4+ on:
Considering it’s a middle-of-the-road product, we like the Cardo Freecom 4+.
Powered by JBL, neodymium speakers give clear audio and status announcements (such as battery warnings.)
It has a 4-way group intercom function which makes it great for touring. And it also has a fully waterproof outer for you undoubtedly get wet on said tour.
A nice touch at this price point is the automatic volume control for ease of use, as is the compatibility with the Cardo Connect App.
Charge time is quick at around 4 hours for a full charge, and it comes with two audio channels so you can run your phone and sat nav independently.
Worthy Mention: Sena 10S
Find the Sena 10S on:
For a do-it-all product in the mid-range price point, the Sena 10S might take your fancy.
You can talk to up to 3 riders in one go, answer calls on your phone, listen to audio, and receive instructions from your sat nav.
The upgraded speakers perform well, and Sena’s Advanced Noise Control prevents environmental noise from interfering with your audio.
As with the Cardo Freecom 4+, you can listen to two channels simultaneously (for example, phone and sat nav) via Sena’s Audio Multitasking functionality.
Top 3 Premium Motorcycle Bluetooth Headsets
And so we peruse into the upper echelons of the headset world! The creme-de-la-creme of Bluetooth units.
You’ll be paying quite a pretty price for the motorcycle Bluetooth headsets in this section. But they come jam-packed with features, are well-built, and feature highly revered Mesh technology.
Best Premium Headset: Sena 50C
Find the Sena 50C on:
If audio is your thing and you enjoy a top-draw gadget, I hope you’re wearing dark trousers. Because you’re about to get a wet patch.
All 50 Series models have a feature list that is nothing short of gargantuan. And on top of that, these motorcycle Bluetooth headsets hallmark the prodigious Mesh technology.
Whilst all the 50 Series models are excellent, we recommend the 50C if you truly want the creme-de-la-creme of motorcycle Bluetooth headsets.
As well as being a Bluetooth headset, the 50C also houses a 4K action camera. And that’s not to mention the fact it shoots still images in standard, burst, and timelapse modes.
Not only that, but if you choose to shoot in 1080p, you’ll reap the rewards of image stabilisation.
But it doesn’t end there. Voice prompts keep you up to speed with what the camera is doing, and video tags mean you can save important parts of your ride if needed.
Video and images aside, the sound quality of this thing is superb, thanks to the audio experts at Harman Kardon. With an all-new microphone for crystal-clear comms, the 50C to the pinnacle for those who want the best in audio and visual technology.
With both mesh and Bluetooth connective platforms, users can connect to other Bluetooth systems (via Bluetooth) or to other Sena headsets via mesh intercom for unprecedented intercom audio quality.
And for added convenience, the 50C allows you to connect to Apple’s Siri or Google’s Assistant via your usual voice commands.
Granted, it’s not cheap. But when you consider it’s a headset, action cam, dash cam, stills camera and assistant, it really is the ultimate in motorcycle Bluetooth headsets.
Worthy Mention: Sena 50 Series (S & R Models)
Find the Sena 50S/R on:
These were our models of choice last year before the newer 50C came out. But if you enjoy riding in groups, the 50S and 50R units really come into their own.
Using a private network, you can link up with 24 other riders. Using an open network, the number of riders you can link up with is unlimited.
And the best bit? You don’t even have to set them up!
With the push of a single button, the Sena 50 Series units automatically pair with other riders. The days of manually pairing are long gone with top-of-the-range Sena’s!
As with other higher-spec Sena’s, the 50 Series units can audio-multitask. They also accept ultra-fast charging and boast HD audio.
A dedicated Wi-Fi adapter (to keep your unit charged and updated with the latest firmware) comes in the pack.
We find it astonishing that you can connect to an unlimited amount of riders and still communicate from 5 miles away!
The advanced voice control on the Series 50 units is brilliant, as is the advanced noise control.
But for the price, it damn well should be.
Note: For those wondering the difference between the S and the R model, the S comes with an hour longer battery life. It also has a dial for adjusting volume, whereas the R has buttons.
To be fair, there is very little difference between the two. It comes down to whether you prefer controlling the device with buttons or a dial.
Worthy Mention: Cardo Packtalk Edge
Find the Packtalk Edge on:
Customer loyalties between Cardo and Sena are the same as those between Garmin and TomTom. They’re both right – and it’s whatever suits you best.
As with the Sena’s above, the Cardo Packtalk Edge also has Bluetooth and mesh connectivity. Connecting via Bluetooth, these headsets will connect with any other Bluetooth headsets. And you can connect with up to 15 riders via mesh connectivity.
And whilst expensive, it’s worth remembering that the Cardo Packtalk Edge comes in a pack of two.
The Cardo also has a voice-activated interface and JBL speakers with integrated EQ tuning. To take it a step further, the Automatic volume control does an excellent job of raising or lowering the volume concerning outside noise.
Want more posts like this one? Try these:
- What Are The Top 10 Quietest Motorcycle Helmets?
- 7 Top Dual-Sport & Adventure Motorcycle Helmets In 2022
- We Tested It: HJC RPHA 90s Carbon Motorcycle Helmet
- Listening To Music While Riding A Motorcycle: The Science
- Our Top Motorcycle Route Planning App Comparison
- 10 Essential Touring Apps For Bikers: A Few Of The Best
What To Consider Before Buying A Motorcycle Bluetooth Headset
For us, there are six things to consider when deciding on a new motorcycle Bluetooth headset:
- Intended use
- Sound quality
- Number of riders you need to communicate with
- Battery life
- Whether or not you need voice control
When To Consider A Budget Headset
As mentioned above, I used budget headsets for years. And this was because I didn’t generally connect to the headsets of other riders – so I wasn’t conversing whilst riding.
I also never listened to music whilst riding. So I didn’t need awesome sound quality, either.
My intended use (at that time) was to receive sat nav instructions. And given that my sat nav was no more than 3-feet away from my head, the range was never an issue.
So when you put all this together, a budget motorcycle Bluetooth headset is sufficient.
Upgrading To Midrange Or Premium
If you intend to talk to 2-3 people whilst riding, you may need to look at a midrange setup with high-quality Bluetooth connectivity.
For 4+ people (spread out over longer distances), you will need to consider premium setups with mesh technology.
Similarly, if you value sound quality for music, it may be worth looking into midrange or premium setups. And if you want to use voice commands with Siri or Google Assistant, you will also need a premium setup.
The Best Motorcycle Bluetooth Headsets: Conclusion
As you can see, there are plenty of options depending on your needs and budget.
For the most basic of uses, I highly recommend the budget headsets. They’re cheap to buy and do the job. And if you break/lose one, it’s cheap enough to replace.
If you like the finer things in life and value features such as sound quality, voice commands, or video, go for the premium options.
Just don’t lose it. Because replacing it will be a bitter pill to swallow!
Top image: Kristian Angelo
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