Cardo Scala Rider Qz Headset
Use of my ear buds, BEST OPTION EVER
This is the first system I have installed in a helmet so it took me a bit to install as I wanted to make sure the velcro had the right placement in case I needed to adjust the speakers later. Which I did to aim them more directly to my ear. But the best option is that I can use my own ear buds without buying an additional accessory. No matter how good any speakers are, and these are good for as small as they are, or how good your helmet is, the wind is just too loud to hear well without adding more stress on those tender eardrums even with ear plugs. The ear buds were my best option. I can keep the volume at a medium level and still hear it all without blasting to over come the wind noise. The second feature that pleases me to no end is the intelligent automatic volume adjustment so I don't blast out my ears when I slow down at a stop light or as I exit the freeway. Very happy with this product!
June 30, 2014
Premium product for an entry level!
The Cardo Scala Rider Qz is an excellent entry level product if you want a Bluetooth helmet with no need for the bike-to-bike communications. I normally ride solo so this was perfect for my needs. The needs they fulfill are:
-To call and to return phone calls
-Music capability both wireless and wired (aux cable is an optional accessory which I purchased from Cardo's website)
-And the ability to access certain applications through my iPhone 5c. (I wanted to record audio using this device and I was able to by using the Recorder Plus app on the App Store from Apple.)
What it did well:
-My voice is very clear when I speak through the mic. It also has this background noise canceling feature where nothing is heard except my voice. Not even wind noise or the bike. It was definitely a plus for me. The settings are customizable so you can connect the headset to your computer, access Cardo's website and fine tune certain settings like mic sensitivity (mine is set to HIGH) and other things. Although it isn't as complicated as their higher end products. The flexibility of the hybrid mic allowed me to fit it into my helmet the way I wanted it to
-The speakers are interchangeable, meaning you can plug in your own ear buds or speakers but the ones that came with it are plenty clear and have a little more bass than my apple earphones.
-Audio coming through speakers will auto adjust volume if the background noise becomes louder such as wind noise and such. I wear ear plugs while I ride so it is definitely a nice feature to have. Although I like to manually adjust the volume as well.
-Bluetooth connectivity is seamless and connects automatically to paired devices when turned on.
-This device is durable. I accidently dropped my headset onto the ground and it only got a few tiny scuffs. Las Vegas can get pretty dusty so it being dust proof was a plus for me too.
-This will fit any helmet I'm sure. It was a challenge for me to put it on my Icon Variant but I did it. My helmet is does not have a space for Bluetooth speakers so positioning is crucial.
-Lastly, the box comes with everything you need to install and use it. Except for the optional aux cable for wired MP3 players.
What it didn't do well:
-Speakers are pretty thick. I positioned it directly over my ears and it felt like I was breaking in a new helmet again. In other words my ears were in pain every time I donned the helmet. Again, positioning is crucial so for me and my Icon Variant, I placed them a little behind my ears so now I don't feel them. I sacrifice a little volume capability for pain relief and comfort. No big deal. But I may invest in different speakers or a different helmet in the future.
-The optional aux cable I purchased for the unit works very well with wired MP3 players. My gripe is that while I was recording audio using my iPhone, it wouldn't let me listen to music simultaneously using the wired MP3 player. But if I wasn't using my iPhone for anything, you could listen to music using the wire and the capability to answer phone calls using this priority system. You can pair to up to two devices and you can decide which is the main priority. And of course the wired mp3 is last priority.
-I tried connecting wirelessly to my PSP Go and it will connect. But the audio that comes through the speakers is terrible and buzzy. Which is why I purchased the optional aux cable.
OVERALL, even with the small issues, it's a great product for the solo rider. I'd definitely recommend it to any lone wolf in need of a little entertainment or phone capability while on the go.
June 30, 2014
Easy Install and use
Connected to iPhone with ease. Button location makes it easy to use while on the helmet. Very easy to install (Shoe RF1200). Sound quality is just ok but what I expected.
June 23, 2014
Some Cardo devices not working with Zumo and MP3's
I thought everyone should know the QZ (and some of the other Cardo products) has a known issue that will not allow it to play MP3's from a Garmin Zumo. Below is the text received from Cardo:
"Thank you for contacting the Cardo Systems Support Center.
We are aware of stereo audio compatibility issues that currently exist between the Zumo and some scala rider products. Our software development team is currently investigating this issue in order to determine if this is something that can be resolved on our end or if an update would need to come from Garmin for their GPS device to resolve the issue. I regret to inform you that I do not have an expected date of resolution at this time but this is definitely something that is currently under investigation. Your patience is appreciated.
Please feel free to contact us if we can assist you with any other questions."
Considering other vendors work with the Zumo, I find it hard to believe it is a bug in the Zumo.
Just thought everyone should know.
June 21, 2014
Cardo QZ Simplicity
I purchased this particular unit for it simplicity. I received exactly what I was looking for. I ride alone the majority of the time and have no need for intercom features. I always listen to music while riding. The pairing with my iPhone 5s was simple and intuitive. Installation on a Schuberth C3 was very straight forward. To be fair I have not placed any calls as of yet. Again, my primary reason for purchase was wireless music. The only reason I did not rate "Durability" as excellent is because of the short time I have owned the QZ. Based upon the design I have no reason to believe this will not be as durable as I need. I am particularly pleased with the size of the unit. I do not find it obtrusive at all. I do not notice any additional wind noise. I am riding a GSA. Best of luck on your search.
June 16, 2014
Does what I needed
I was looking for a Bluetooth headset to use with my GPS unit, but I wasn't keen on dropping lots of cash for an intercom system when all I needed was the Bluetooth functionality. Then I saw this--the price point was right, and it had the features I wanted.
It installed on my Arai XD4 neatly and without any difficulty, and it paired up nicely with my TomTom Rider (2013 model). Everything basically "just worked".
I gave it a test during a 300+ mile trip, and things worked out fine. Up to about 70 mph, I can hear the instructions from my GPS clearly; above that, you can tell that it said something, but that's about it. I do wish it came with a smaller microphone for use in a full-face helmet, but that's a minor quibble.
Overall, it does what I needed at a reasonable price point.
May 5, 2014
Would like to have gotten the more flexable mike boom. otherwise the product is great. not a lot of excess wiring which makes it easy to install
April 8, 2014
This product was easy to install in my helmet. Seems to work good. Phone calls are easy to answer. I listen to books on my Ipod and Pandora music from my S-4. All are working fine.
April 1, 2014