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  #1  
Old 08-27-2012, 05:24 AM
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Default Cardo Scala G9

Received my Cardo Scala G9 on Friday. Had ordered it the previous day from Phat. if you also do so, call first and ask for best price. FWIW, I spoke to operator Tristan.

I had read the reviews. They are very positive. From my Saturday four hour ride, I can say the positive reviews are accurate. I have owned various communicator units since circa 1998, for the purpose of being in voice contact with my wife who was a new rider on her own Dyna at the time. The technology has been improving. Each set better than the previous. The Cardo Scala G9 is the next increment delivering more than I had expected.

My previous Bluetooth communicators could pair to only one other at the same time. The G9 instead 8. I don't yet have experience with more than one pairing with another rider.

It was easy to pair with my iPhone. I have the old unlimited AT&T data plan. Connected to Pandora and selected ZZTop station based upon another thread on good sounds with which to ride. The G9 is A2DP stereo, and includes two ear speakers. Sound was crisp, no distortion. Strong in the highs and middle tones. Lacking in the base which is not unusual for "on the ear" speakers. My in the ear buds Etymotec have much better base. The speakers overall not up to Etymotec but still very good. The G9's sounds far exceed my HD Boom fairing speakers, with Hogtunes tweeters and 160 amp. The G9 has the advantage of a more isolated environment within the helmet and proximity to the ears; because of these advantages, I don't see how bike mounted speakers can compete on the quality of audible sound, and price.

The G9 has FM. I have not tried that yet.

The G9 when paired to my iPhone has voice activation. So by arrangement, a buddy called. I merely spoke loudly "hello." The phone answered the call. My buddy's voice transmission was heard better with the G9 than with the iPhone speakers. Buddy said my voice transmission via the G9 from inside my flip-up helmet was better than if I was speaking into the iPhone from within a good acoustical environment.

I won't be spending more for bike mounted audio equipment. No more plans to add speakers to my saddlebag lids or more amps. Better music sound, with the ability to connect to others at one's discretion or not is a combination that makes bike mounted audio obsolete.

Of course to use the G9 at present you need a helmet - open or closed face. The next evolution could bring earbuds, ear mounted voice bar, and glove mounted controls for communication and sounds sans helmet.
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Last edited by Bull_Duck; 08-27-2012 at 05:59 AM.
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  #2  
Old 08-27-2012, 08:07 AM
taker96 taker96 is offline
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Thanks for an awesome review. I've been looking at communication devices myself lately to do all the things you mentioned especially Pandora from my phone. I may take a closer look at these units. Do you know if the bluetooth would allow you to connect to other bluetooth capable headsets of a different brand or do they both have to be Cardo?
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Old 08-27-2012, 12:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by taker96 View Post
Thanks for an awesome review. I've been looking at communication devices myself lately to do all the things you mentioned especially Pandora from my phone. I may take a closer look at these units. Do you know if the bluetooth would allow you to connect to other bluetooth capable headsets of a different brand or do they both have to be Cardo?
The easy answer is "Sorry, I do not know."

The longer answer is that I sold my previous bluetooth communications device on eBay just prior to ordering the G9. Had to do that for peace and harmony in the household. So I have no way to test. My GUESS is that they could connect to one other Bluetooth communication device, but not with the many features that the G9 offers such as connection to 8.
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Old 08-27-2012, 12:56 PM
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I also have the g9's and have not attempted to connect to other brands but I would think Bluetooth is Bluetooth no matter the brand. Everything I have with Bluetooth has connected to the G9 - some better than others but they did connect.
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Old 08-27-2012, 05:15 PM
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We used the G9s on a 600-mile ride from Orlando to the Grand Canyon and other places. Four guys rode and our girls flew to Vegas to meet us. Three of us bought Powersets (dual systems). I let rider #4 use my second headset.

When it was just the four guys riding, it took us a while to figure out how to get them to pair - but once we figured it out, they worked GREAT. We were able to talk with no problem, and it really added a whole new dimension to the group ride experience. I'm a big fan.

We never did figure out how to get all six of them to pair once our girls arrived - but we didn't try real hard. We were riding some really nice roads, and I wanted to be able to talk with my wife, so we just didn't really try.

I prefer to use a half-shell helmet when I ride locally, but I have gotten so spoiled by the quality of the music in my G9 that I ride with my 3/4 helmet all fo the time now. My wife loves being able to talk easier, and the clarity when talking on the phone is very good.

We did find that batteries would run down on long days (600 miles). We started taking our chargers in to restaurants on our lunch stops to get a little battery boost in the middle of the day, and this really helped.

Big fan of the G9 here, for sure.
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Old 08-27-2012, 09:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bull_Duck View Post
The easy answer is "Sorry, I do not know."

The longer answer is that I sold my previous bluetooth communications device on eBay just prior to ordering the G9. Had to do that for peace and harmony in the household. So I have no way to test. My GUESS is that they could connect to one other Bluetooth communication device, but not with the many features that the G9 offers such as connection to 8.
What was your previous headset?

I am currently using the scala rider Q2 set and I would like to replace them with something else. I have seen good reviews on the SENA SMH10 set and the Scala G9. I want a set that does not have the VOX mode defaulted as "on". On the Q2 it can be disabled, but as soon as the headset is keyed it defaults back on. When using a 3/4 helmet on windy days the VOX will keep the mic on.
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Old 08-28-2012, 07:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Roadie09 View Post
What was your previous headset?

I am currently using the scala rider Q2 set and I would like to replace them with something else. I have seen good reviews on the SENA SMH10 set and the Scala G9. I want a set that does not have the VOX mode defaulted as "on". On the Q2 it can be disabled, but as soon as the headset is keyed it defaults back on. When using a 3/4 helmet on windy days the VOX will keep the mic on.
Prior to the G9 I owned a BlueAnt Interphone. Nice rider to rider communicators. Downside for my use was that they only pair to one other at a time. None of my regular fellow riders have communicators. So when my wife did not ride, the BlueAnt Interphone was left at home. So I wanted a communicator with additional functionality, and I was willing to pay for that additional functionality. My first communicator was a Collette made in Canada. All good for their time.

My wife would ride on perhaps 1 out of 4 Saturday rides, say 12 times a year at most. No complaints because those times thranslate into her "enthusiasm" for my two bikes and riding, and her Dyna. She either rides her Dyna or she is my passenger on the FLTR. She is a good rider and when on her Dyna she generally leads when group riding; at which times she wants me at the end of the line to inform her all is well or if there is any problem. So communicators are good for group rides especially if more than four riders.

I ride during the week as well, but alone. I wanted a communicator that had use on those rides as well. A2DP and two helmet speakers, connectivity to cell phone and Pandora and FM, connectivity up to 8, easy pairing including link to a new rider while on the road, all together justified the additional expense. But say none of that functionality beyond basic one-to-one connectivity is considered of value. In which case purchase a resale BlueAnt Interphone or similar device.
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Last edited by Bull_Duck; 08-28-2012 at 08:31 AM.
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Old 08-28-2012, 07:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roadie09 View Post
What was your previous headset?

I am currently using the scala rider Q2 set and I would like to replace them with something else. I have seen good reviews on the SENA SMH10 set and the Scala G9. I want a set that does not have the VOX mode defaulted as "on". On the Q2 it can be disabled, but as soon as the headset is keyed it defaults back on. When using a 3/4 helmet on windy days the VOX will keep the mic on.
The Sena Unit does allow you to turn to VOX mode off and it stays off and does not default back on its own. We use them with half helmets that way for the reason you describe.
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Old 11-21-2012, 06:54 PM
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I like the ability to hear Pandora via Scala's Bluetooth.
Audio communication with my wife on another bike is good so long as range is not too far - namely, line of sight. FM radio not yet working; but then, I live in a rural area and frankly not much to which to listen.

Other riders among my regulars have not bought into audio communications, so no update with over two at a time.
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Old 11-26-2012, 03:32 PM
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Thanks for the review bull_duck, I have been reviewing the G9 and the Sena smh-10, and just have not found anything compelling enough to make me want to spend twice as much almost on the cardo unit over the Sena for my uses......

Decisions, decisions.......
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