Motorcyclists love to tell stories about things that happened while they were riding. Having video evidence to back it up makes the stories even more fun. Who would believe you if you said that, as you were hard on the brakes from 160+ mph into Turn 2 at Laguna Seca, a ground squirrel ran across the track in front of you and the $100,000 Ducati Superleggera you were piloting? Well, Troy was able to document Mister Squizzles’ near-fatal dash, thanks to his helmet cam, and put an end to our disbelief. (See the proof here.)
On rare occasions my wife allows me to drive her Mercedes GLE. It’s a treat compared to my aging Tacoma. One of its tastiest bits is the Harman/Kardon sound system. When I saw that Sena’s newest modular helmet featured the same brand name audio engineering, I was quick to call E-i-C Brasfield and coerce him into letting me test one. He did, and I’m here to report that the Impulse is the best-sounding helmet I’ve ever worn.
While many of us enjoy riding motorcycles because of its solitary nature, group rides are also a source of great riding memories. Once you’ve ridden with a group of friends and been able to talk to each other during the ride, you’ll understand why Bluetooth helmet communicators have gotten so popular. You can remind everyone of an upcoming turn or give a warning about a road hazard. Or, if you’re riding with John Burns, be serenaded with an endless list of song snippets. Never a dull moment here. But there’s more to these gadgets than that. How about touring and actually being able to hear music without frightening the horses in the nearby fields? Or maybe it’s just something as mundane as having Siri whisper directions in your ear. Parents can adjust their child-rearing logistics on the fly. After a while, a helmet communicator will become an essential part of your riding kit.
Learning about new products is always exciting here at MO. Testing and reporting on motorcycle-related products is an important (and fun) part of our job. When the new product in question is a makeover of one of our favorite pieces of gear – as is the case with the Shoei Neotec II – the excitement is even more pronounced. (There was even a little behind-the-scenes wrangling over who would be assigned the review.) Still, I’ve got to be honest. I was also a little bit worried about the update. What if Shoei changed my absolute favorite modular helmet – the helmet I wear almost every day – in ways that made me like it less? Given the popularity of the Neotec with the riding public, I’m sure I’m not the only one who may have wondered if the changes would all be good.
Thanksgiving means it’s time for family, football, turkey, and, of course, Black Friday shopping. While you’ve been scarfing down stuffing or watching the Bears down the Lions (spoiler alert!), we looked around and compiled a list of some of the best Black Friday deals for motorcyclists.
All I remember was walking down the street in Long Beach, CA, minding my own business when I heard it. Was that the sound of an irate primate? Living in Long Beach for a few years now, between the cacophonous flocks of bright green parrots and unmistakable roar of Indy cars once a year, the sound didn’t concern me, that was until I felt a heavy blow to the back of my head.
I love helmet communicators. Using them has changed the way I ride. In fact, when testing new helmets, one of the first things I do (once I become familiar with the noise levels in the helmet) is install a communicator. I ride so many places where I use turn-by-turn directions that I can’t imagine going back to the bad old days of taping directions on the gas tank. Until Sena released the 30K, the company’s 20S/20S EVO units were my go-to communicators. So, you can imagine my excitement when it came time to test the 30K which takes all the features of the 20S and adds the new, easy-to-use mesh communication technology to the mix.
Helmet communication systems have moved beyond the upstart phase of their existence, and now the major manufacturers (primarily Cardo Systems and Sena) are working on ever-increasing refinement. Case in point is the Cardo Systems PackTalk Bold. The company’s Dynamic Mesh Communication (DMC) system has been around for a couple years and has grown quite popular with its increased flexibility compared to Bluetooth group communications. To this improved group chatting, the PackTalk Bold takes the company’s top-of-the-line communicator and adds next-generation voice control, allowing riders to keep their hands on the motorcycle’s grips where they belong instead of manipulating the controls of a helmet-mounted communicator.
Sena has ventured into the competitive world of helmet manufacturing with its new Bluetooth integrated full-face helmet line-up. The Korean company has already established itself as a, if not the, leader in Bluetooth communication technology when it comes to the powersports and outdoor markets. The company is now producing four helmets integrated with Bluetooth: Momentum Lite, Momentum, Momentum INC, and Momentum Pro. After having spent some time testing the Momentum, let’s take a look at how the new Bluetooth integrated helmet functions.
Now that AIMExpo 2017 is complete, we’ve compiled our choices for the coolest stuff we saw while perusing the show. While the number of new 2018 model-year motorcycles was limited because of the show’s early date, that didn’t prevent the show from reflecting a vital motorcycle industry. So, as we reflect on last week’s show, here’s a list – in no particular order – of the top 10 products that we saw at the 2017 AIMExpo in Columbus, Ohio.
Father’s Day is looming on the horizon, and those of you who have motorcycle loving fathers are (hopefully) looking for a way to tell Dad how much you appreciate all he’s done for you and the family over the previous year. If he’s like most fathers, dad has probably avoided buying or doing things that he wanted to, just because the needs of the family outweighed his own desires. For families like that, you already know what to get him – just order that thing he decided not to get for himself. However, if Dad’s moto-needs are a mystery to you, take heart. We’ve put together a listing of stuff that’s bound to make your riding father quite happy. The prices range quite a bit here, so you’re sure to find something within the range of greenbacks contained in your wallet.
Sena wants you to have an action cam. How? By creating a low-priced entry into the action camera market in the form of the Sena Prism Tube. For just $119, you get a 1.0-inch diameter by 3.9-inch length aluminum cylinder capable of capturing about two hours of 1080p 30fps video and audio. Once mounted to the rider’s helmet via the included mounting system, operating the unit couldn’t be any easier. Simply sliding the ring around the outside of the tube forward turns the Prism Tube on and begins recording. It’s that simple.