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Best motorcycle Bluetooth 2022

Mar 01, 2022

Looking for the best motorcycle comms units of 2022? You’ve come to the right place.

Top motorcycle Bluetooth 2022

Bluetooth units are incredibly beneficial to riders who want to talk with others, get audio directions for navigation, answer phone calls, or just listen to music while riding. Today, there are more choices than ever, so we rated the usability, features and price of every comm unit to find the very best units available. They break down into three major uses: Big groups, small groups, and budget-friendly basics. Additionally, we’ve updated our Gear Guide format to include options from both Sena and Cardo for each category. (Bluetooth comms are supposed to work across manufacturers, but in our experience, it’s best to have everyone in your group using the same brand.)

The selection process

Here at RevZilla, Bluetooth comms are one of our most popular and most feature-packed products, so we spend countless hours testing and troubleshooting for customers. We also use them on our personal rides, from the street to the trails, and we even rely on them when shooting videos for RevZilla’s YouTube channel. The comms units found in this review are the same ones you’ll find on our own helmets, so let’s dive in. 

The best motorcycle Bluetooth of 2022
Comm Unit
Sena 50S/50R
Best Sena for large groups
    • Powerful mesh connection
    • Harman-Kardon audio
    Cardo PackTalk Slim/BOLD JBL
    Best Cardo for large groups
      • Two unit configurations, both mesh
      • Upgraded speakers from JBL
      Sena 10S/10R
      Best Sena for small groups
        • Proven, popular options
        • Choose buttons or jog wheel
        Cardo Freecom 4X/2X
        Best Cardo for small groups
          • Excellent range
          • Low profile mounting
          Sena Spider ST/RT
          Best budget Sena
            • Capable of mesh connection
            • Choose button or wheel controls
            Cardo Spirit/Spirit HD
            Best budget Cardo
              • Bluetooth 5.2 tech
              • Solid basic feature set

              Best Sena Bluetooth communicator for big groups: Sena 50S/50R

              Sena’s answers to the PackTalk BOLD/Slim are the new 50R and 50S Harman-Kardon units. These also feature mesh connectivity, and they took the idea one step further by creating “Open Group” and “Private Group” mesh pairing with up to 24 mesh units over a span of five miles. 

              Sena 50S Harman-Kardon communicator
              Sena 50S Harman-Kardon. RevZilla photo.

              Sena also added slick new speakers from Harmon-Kardon that address some of the shortcomings from the last generation, then finished off the line with voice command functionality. Automatic updates keep the latest firmware on board to prevent connection issues. 

              Sena 50R Harman-Kardon
              Sena 50R Harman-Kardon. RevZilla photo.

              The 50R model retains the traditional Sena three-button layout in a thin profile. The 50S has a tactile jog wheel, so it’s a little larger, but it can be easier to make fine adjustments with a gloved hand. Both are smart choices for those who like to be social in large groups.

              Best Cardo Bluetooth communicator for big groups: Cardo PackTalk BOLD/Slim JBL

              Mesh technology is a must-have for riders communicating with large groups. In basic terms, mesh allows riders to seamlessly drop in and out of the group’s communication, and it offers superior range by using other units in the group to extend the reach of your comms. This is especially beneficial on winding roads, or in off-road terrain. 

              Cardo PackTalk BOLD JBL
              Cardo PackTalk BOLD JBL. RevZilla photo.

              The PackTalk BOLD and Slim units from Cardo are their top-of-the-line offerings. The tech inside them is the same; the only difference is the way the unit mounts. We recommend the BOLD if you swap your Bluetooth unit from one helmet or another. Otherwise, go for the Slim, which separates the battery and “brains” of the unit for a lower profile.

              Cardo PackTalk Slim JBL
              Cardo PackTalk Slim JBL. RevZilla photo.

              Both allow pairing with up to 15 other riders with a total group span of five miles. Riders with standard Bluetooth units can join, too, but their range will be limited if they aren’t mesh-compatible. Other features include verbal commands with Natural Voice Technology and JBL speakers that sound great to our ears. 

              Best Sena Bluetooth communicator for small groups: Sena 10S/10R

              If your typical rides involve a few friends, not a large group, a mid-tier Bluetooth communicator is our recommendation. These units aren’t quite as advanced (or expensive) as our large group choices above, but they still pack plenty of functionality for groups up to four.

              Sena 10S communicator
              Sena 10S. RevZilla photo.

              And if your riding friends are using Senas, the 10S and 10R communicators are the way to go at around $215. We’ve used both models extensively in our own riding. Choose the 10S if you like the jog wheel controls, or go with the 10R for the three-button layout and a slimmer, more integrated design.

              Sena 10R communicator
              Sena 10R. RevZilla photo.

              Bluetooth 4.1 connects up to four riders over a mile of range. They also feature live-streaming music, FM radio, and noise-canceling tech. Sena includes a wired and boom mic with each unit to fit most helmets, and either unit can be further upgraded with a handlebar remote for controlling your communicator without reaching up to your helmet.

              Best Cardo Bluetooth communicator for small groups: Freecom 4X/2X

              Our favorite small group comms unit for the Cardo crowd is the Freecom 4X, or the Freecom 2X if you only need to talk to one other rider or a passenger. Both Freecom X models feature Bluetooth 5.2 connections for a range of half a mile with the 2X, or about three quarters of a mile with the 4X.

              Cardo Freecom 4X communicator
              Cardo Freecom 4X. RevZilla photo.

              Bluetooth 5.2 is definitely an improvement over the 4.2 setup found in the Senas. It also enables clearer communication with Cardo’s “Live Intercom” feature. That said, the 4X is a bit more expensive than the Sena 10R or 10S at around $245. The 2X is more affordable at $190, but remember that it only pairs to one other unit. Jog wheel controls and JBL speakers round out Cardo’s latest offerings.  

              Best Sena Bluetooth communicator on a budget: Sena Spider ST1/RT1

              The new ST1 and RT1 are our picks for riders who want an affordable communicator without leaving the Sena family. They’re split by control layout like many of Sena’s other lines: a jog wheel on the ST1 and three buttons on the thinner RT1.

              Sena Spider ST1
              Sena Spider ST1. RevZilla photo.

              At $200 each, they’re only budget units in the context of Sena’s lineup, so it isn’t really their price that sets them apart. Instead, it’s the fact that Sena’s two entry models offer mesh technology. The ST1 and the RT1 are the best way to get the future of rider-to-rider communication in your helmet without blowing the budget.

              Sena Spider RT1 communicator
              Sena Spider RT1. RevZilla photo.

              Easily pair with large groups using mesh, enjoying class-leading range and call quality. Keep in mind that these units are mesh-only, so you won’t be able to pair with other riders using a traditional Bluetooth connection. The ST1 and RT1 will pair with your smartphone over Bluetooth, though, which means basics like music, phone calls, and navigation are still available.

              Best Cardo Bluetooth communicator on a budget: Cardo Spirit/Spirit HD

              Cardo also released a pair of excellent models for those who don’t need all the high-tech features of the fancier models. The Freecom 1+ has been superseded by these two four-button units that impressed us with their low profile and Bluetooth 5.2 connection. It’s uncommon to see 5.2 at this price point, so kudos to Cardo for bringing high quality connections to this tier.

              Cardo Spirit HD communicator
              Cardo Spirit HD. RevZilla photo.

              The Spirit and Spirit HD can connect to one other unit. This is recommended for those who usually ride with another person, or for a link to your passenger. There are slight differences between units here. The base Spirit ($90) has a quarter mile range, whereas the Spirit HD ($135) can reach a third of a mile. It also adds 40 mm speakers and an FM radio. Both can stream music, make and receive phone calls, and cancel out some road noise for better audio quality. 

              That rounds up our 2022 Bluetooth Gear Guide. The battle between Sena and Cardo for dominance in this space brought us some fantastic new Bluetooth units for every kind of rider. And although devices from each brand should be able to link with each other (where supported), we definitely recommend matching brands when riding in a group for the best experience. If you have any specific questions about the models covered in this guide, just contact our gear experts, who will get you pointed in the right direction. Don’t miss our other Gear Guides for more of the best in 2022.