Motorcycle Intercom and Communications System
AKE Electronics PowerCom ROGER One Intercom
by H.B.C. for webBikeWorld.com
In This Series:
(Below) | wBW
Motorcycle Intercoms Home | wBW
AKE Electronics PowerCom ROGER One system works, period.
It is a pure communications device for those who want or
need to stay in touch. If requirements or budget
are modest, this is all one might ever really need.
While the wired environment
allows for a single radio (FRS/GMRS/CB) or mobile phone
device to be connected, exploiting the (optional)
Bluetooth capabilities can provide enhanced
functionality, and versatility, without significantly
increasing the investment.
An important feature is that
all PowerCom systems and accessories will work with one
another (appreciating that not all features are
available on all systems). In researching the
PowerCom products, including this system it is clear
that AKE really understands the communications market
and that it has worked diligently to eliminate
Thus the unknown has now
become the known. If this middle-placed system is
any indicator of what can be expected of the upper-end
systems, the road ahead is anxiously awaited.
Part One: The PowerCom
ROGER One System
An Introduction to AKE PowerCom
Motorcycle Intercom Systems
AKE Electronics produces telecommunication and radio technology
equipment, and motorcycle communication systems are their
primary product. The German company's tagline is “Good
things will become even better.”
In 2007 the company completely revised its motorbike
communication systems with a new range of intercoms and
other products. With 25
years of experience in the field, the AKE offerings
reflects this experience, resulting in a well thought
out, comprehensive lineup.
AKE Electronics is similar to
many other manufacturers; they design, build and
market an array of individual motorcycle intercom systems, each with their own
features and capabilities. What distinguishes the
company is the fact that the AKE motorcycle communication
systems and accessories all fit, work and play together, and
they can even be connected with other equipment as well, providing an integrated
system for riders and passengers.
According to company
information (some of which was translated from German),
the systems manufactured by AKE
Electronics are marketed under three major groupings
or series: PowerCom Motorbike Communication Systems;
"Fit-for-Motorbike" hands-free equipment, identified by
the unique ‘10’ designator; and Motorbike Communication
Systems FOR 2.
The PowerCom product range
is a series of systems that provide full duplex
communications (rider to rider or rider to intercom),
stereo audio, navigation by voice features, two-way
radio and mobile phone hands-free interfaces,
driver/rider security settings, priority signal
management, and much more.
A host of compatible
accessories make up a large part of the comprehensive
AKE offering. These include "HighVoice" and "HighSound"
helmet kits, helmet accessories, Bluetooth components
and PowerCom function devices for PTT, iVOX, MUTE, etc,
and control interfaces to connecting portable players
(iPod), Sony and Blaupunkt radios, Garmin and TomTom
GPS and other devices.
Rounding out the accessory
list is a long list of cables and fittings for both
system components and to connect peripherals. Between
the major components and the accessories, just about any
configuration requirements can be met,
allowing a very tailored or extremely flexible system to
be put into use for two wheels, four wheels or otherwise.
The primary objective of all
AKE systems is to provide, “a stress free communications
environment”. This is done in a variety of ways --
hands-free radio communications, access to music and
information sources via peripherals, interfaces with
voice-capable navigation systems, mobile phone access,
and documenting or capturing information by audio or
As a whole, the PowerCom list
of products can be somewhat daunting at first. But in
viewing the well-organized information on the website or
print media, offerings under the various functional
categories can be quickly matched up to user
requirements, desires and of course, budget.
For this initial evaluation of PowerCom products the
goal was to assemble a base set of components that
represented the product line.
Another goal is to
provide as much functional and technical information as
possible, based on published or provided media and as
verified from data generated during the evaluation.
AKE products have been
available in Europe for some time, directly from their
website and from selected dealers in various
But the brand and its products are not well
known to many in North America. However, with the establishment of a
North American presence (see summary table below), this is
bound to change.
Planning and Preparation
After several weeks of coordination were completed with
company representatives, a well-wrapped box was
received from AKE in Germany. In the box was a ROGER One
system kit, along with complementary accessories for use
with the ROGER One.
number of personal devices were used to support this
evaluation, all of which are identified in a separate
Technical Section at the end of the article.
Other than the requirement
to return the equipment, no other conditions were
stipulated by AKE. This evaluation is based solely on
data produced and information forged during the
evaluation activity that took place from mid-December
2007 to mid-March 2008.
An initial inventory check,
deemed prudent as the box had obviously been opened at
least twice on its journey across the pond, revealed a
missing 100-240V AC to DC charger unit, normally part of
the Bluetooth kit, needed to charge the Bluetooth module
battery. A n email to the AKE contact resulted in a
replacement charger being received the following week.
AKE PowerCom ROGER One Control Module
A Component Listing
To help understand how all the evaluated bits-n-pieces
fit and work together, a simple bullet view of the
supplied components is shown below.
ROGER One Motorbike
▪ Control Module
Helmet Set PowerCom HighVoice
▪ Set of high-quality dynamic transducers, 300 to
▪ Dynamic transducer microphone, noise compensated
Helmet Set PowerCom HighSound
▪ Set of high-quality dynamic transducers, 30 to
▪ Dynamic transducer microphone, noise reduced electret
▪ Radio adapter cable, PMR/FRS, dual plug, 2.5mm & 3.5mm
▪ Radio adapter cable, Kenwood, single plug, 3.5mm
▪ Radio adapter cable, CB, four pin round connector
PowerCom Operating Device Interface Assembly
Helmet Set Bluetooth 101 and PB-HC2 Bundle
▪ PowerCom Bluetooth Helmet Module
▪ Rechargeable Li-ion 120mAh, removable/replaceable
▪ Rechargeable Li-ion 750mAh, removable/replaceable
▪ Set of high-quality dynamic transducers, 300 to
▪ Dynamic transducer microphone, noise reduced
▪ Bluetooth Helmet Connector ModulePB-HC2
AKE Bluetooth Intercom Set
The Heart of the System
The ROGER One control module is the processing and
distribution core of the system. As a product offering
it sits smack dab in the middle of seven current PowerCom systems. As its focus is on providing basic
communications, it is not an all singing, all dancing
system. What it does represent is a good middle ground
offering, especially for those whose priority is staying
Specific features allow the
ROGER One to automatically recognize activity of a
connected two-way radio while also providing automatic
volume control (AVC) depending on the noise levels
present. Either automatic voice control or manual
push-to-talk (PTT) control is possible.
A new feature, the iVOX
supplement, previously only available on the top-end
INNOVA or ON TOUR systems is now part of the ROGER One
system. When used with the bundled iVOX activator plug
or with the optional PowerCom operating device, iVOX
provides intelligent voice control by its sensing and
The simply packaged kit
provides the following: control module, a two piece five
wire power harness, the iVOX Activator plug, a set of
installation and operating instructions in German and
English and sundry items for installation (a large pad
of Velcro for mounting purposes, two adhesive cable
strain reliefs, and five long and two short nylon ties).
All PowerCom modules utilize
the same sturdy brushed-aluminum weatherproof housing
that measures a svelte 150mm x 70mm x 20mm (6 x 2.5 x ¾
in). Facing up, five connection cable leads exit the
right side while five adjustable ‘trimmers’ or variable
controls dominate the front edge. The left end is
stamped with brand, plant and serial number information.
The ROGER One has connection
|• Headset – large DIN plug,
|• Mobile phone or a mobile radio
– small DIN plug, marked (F)
|• Passenger intercom - large DIN
plug, not marked
|• Remote – small DIN plug,
marked (R), used by:
||- The iVOX Activator plug
||- The PowerCom Bluetooth Helmet Connector dongle or the PowerCom Operating Device Interface
|• Power cable lead/harness assembly.
Getting the ROGER One
control module installed on a motorcycle and ready for
use was simple. After testing the components on the work
bench using a buffered 12V power supply, the harness was
installed on a BMW R1200GS Adventure. With the
instructions read and the Sargent seat removed for easy
access to the battery, the whole installation was done
in fifteen minutes.
While the two piece power
harness is easy to use and install, the ROGER One system
was not permanently mounted during this evaluation and
used on multiple motorcycles. In a scenario where a user
has multiple motorcycles or platforms, or where
portability is desired, using the large weatherproof DIN
connectors for the power harness would be ideal.
During this evaluation three
platforms were used: the static environment, the R1200GS
Adventure, as it regularly gets pulled out on warmer
days when the roads are (relatively) clear of snow; and,
the Versys as it made the trip (via trailer) to Florida
and Daytona for Speed Week.
Three helmets were used for
the headsets: the Nolan 102 Flip, the day to day
favourite; and, two ARAI units, the Corsair and the XD.
As it sits in between the two ARAI in terms of overall
comfort and noise levels, the Nolan ended up being the
primary headset platform with all three headsets
installed in it at various stages of the evaluation.
The Stage is Set
The ROGER One evaluation should have been straight
forward. But with further research and in getting more
familiar with everything that had been shipped as
accessories, there seemed to be merit in seeing just
what (else) this basic system could really do.
Accordingly, while much of
this evaluation is based on identified features
validated by data collected and activities conducted for
this evaluation, a few undocumented features were found
that just had to be detailed, most of which will be
addressed in PART TWO of this submission.
Without good audio input and output, the best
communication systems in the world are at best, just
pieces of equipment. AKE has addressed this requirement
fully in providing different headsets (all stereo) and
high-performance microphones to meet specific user
AKE PowerCom HighVoice Headset
PowerCom HighVoice Headset
This full face helmet headset is intended for use where
speech is the dominate audio. As such, a high quality
set of loudspeakers (300 to 5,000Hz frequency response)
along with a wind noise compensating close-voice
microphone are provided, all meant to optimize voice
transmissions and provide clear audio.
This kit comprises: a
combination connection harness and flex cable connector
with a large DIN plug on one end and two flat
mini-connectors on the other (three pin for headset and
two pin for microphone) and a stereo loudspeaker set
with a thin two wire lead between the two speakers.
Rounding out the kit is a
dynamic transducer microphone, and mounting items (cable
ties, adhesive strain relief pad) and installation/use
instructions in German and English.
All kit components are
simple in design, well made and weatherproof. The wiring
and flat connectors are very thin and lightweight,
facilitating helmet installation. When mounted properly,
everything is safely tucked away or secured with the
The robust and flexible
spiral headset connection cord provides a sturdy
weatherproof connection to the main control module. Elevated alignment marks on each DIN plug make
connecting them an easy thing, even with gloves on.
Measuring 50 cm (19 in) in relaxed mode, the spiral
cable can be stretched out to a generous 200 cm (79 in).
Installing the HighVoice
headset into the Nolan revealed just how large the kit
microphone is. Measuring 50mm x 40mm (2.0 x 1.5in), the
foam and plastic shell takes up a fair amount of real
estate, even when compressed together (allowed, per the
With the Nolan, two options
were available to correctly install the microphone
component – the optional mini-spiral cord kit or the
Boom Microphone (PBM 1) kit. The mini-spiral cord
extension was installed first, with the boom microphone
setup installed later.
The only issue with the
spiral extension cord kit is that there is a fair amount
of wire to ‘hide’ or secure. Unsnapping the inner liner
piece allowed wiring to be routed safety out of the way,
especially from the side latches. Only the coiled
section of the extension cord should be allowed to swing
freely -- it provides the necessary extension when the
front piece is fully opened.
AKE PowerCom HighSound Headset
This headset kit can be used for full face, flip-up or
open–face helmets. Designed to provide optimal music and
speech audio under all conditions, the HighSound
speakers have far more frequency range, 30 to 20,000Hz
than the HighVoice set (300 to 5,000Hz).
The speakers are thicker and
have additional foam backing as well, providing more
‘depth’ and thus resonance space for better stereo sound
and bass playback. As with all helmet speaker sets,
proper location and mounting is important, so that audio
output is optimized. The placement test and alignment
instructions found in the Operating Instruction, is
Packaging of this kit
differs from the HighVoice package in that the
microphone and headset mini-connectors are mated to a
short harness cable measuring 21 cm (8 in). This short
helmet harness is then plugged into the provided
extension flex cable that can be stretched from 50 to
200 cm (19 to 79 in), to bridge the headset and the
Are We Ready?
With power to the main module, activating the system is
simple. The helmet headset spiral cable is connected to
the ROGER One control module via the large DIN plugs,
marked (D) on both cables. Line up the raised marks on
each plug and push them together. If power is good, an
audible power click is heard in the headset, verifying
that the system is powered up.
For a standard (basic)
installation, the control module is automatically
powered up when the headset cable is connected, and
powered down when it is disconnected. In the event that
none of the other power switching options are active
this function prevents the unit from staying on and
draining the battery if a direct connection is used to
power the system.
AKE clearly states that the
best performance is obtained from using a totally wired
system; a point well made and acknowledged, even with
all the wireless technology advances available to
Outside of the initial power
click and any clicks generated when devices are
connected, the system is virtually silent. There is only
the slightest hint of white noise in the headset,
whether the system is running off a buffered 12V power
supply or on a motorcycle. The active power and noise
suppression features really work.
As the ROGER One is the
basic communication system, there is no provision for an
additional wired plug-in audio (music) source on this
model. However, music or other audio could possibly be
streamed in via any compatible mobile device connection,
Accessory interface cables for portable radios and CB
units were provided to allow a range of radio devices to
Double jack cable with 2.5mm (microphone) and 3.5mm
(speaker) plugs (both double pole), for use on many LPD
(Low Power Devices) and PMR (Personal Mobile Radio)
devices used in Europe, some Family Radio Service (FRS)
devices found in North America and, many hand-held
Citizen Band (CB) transceivers.
Single jack cable with a 2.5mm plug (three pole) -
identified for use with a Kenwood two-way (FRS-based)
radio, although it should be compatible with other
popular FRS radios on the market in North America.
CB Radio cable with 3.5mm (two pole) and four-pin
round thread connector as used on many popular desktop
or vehicle mount CB units
Finding compatible radios in
the local area proved difficult. To expedite evaluation
of the system, a second parcel received from AKE
contained a pair of alan456R PMR446 radios, a popular
European device, just what was needed to get going.
During the trip to Florida a
set of Midland GXT735 X-TRA TALK North American
compliant RS/GMRS radios as well as two Radio Shack
hand-held CB radios (Cat No. 21-1679) were procured. Both sets were successfully used with the ROGER One
using the dual-plug interface cable.
Electronics Connected to the AKE
PowerCom System for This Evaluation
Radio Shack Transceivers
Midland GMRS FRS Radios
Midland CB Radio
Garmin Zumo 550
BMW Navigator III+
Alan 456R PMR446 Radios
In the Real World
Measuring and assessing how well a system does, or does
not perform must ultimately be done in a realistic
(live) environment. Due to large amounts of white stuff
outside, initial evaluations were done in a controlled
environment (inside and outside between snow banks).
The Speed Week sojourn
served to generate a large amount of test data for
evaluation purposes. Riding and using the system on a
daily basis is the only way to really assess reliability
and performance of any specific system and peripherals.
Without hesitation it can be
stated that the AKE PowerCom ROGER One system and every
accessory goes together and works together, period.
The wired world is quiet and
secure. System components connect easily as do
peripheral devices via the respective interface cable. Whether on iVOX or PTT the switching is fast and clarity
remains superb. System performance is optimized as all
data is moved through a common switch with attenuation
provided by the discrete tunable controls.
iVOX – stands for
intelligent VOX-control. This feature provides a
continuously compensated response threshold based on
sampling of the surrounding noise. Extensive voice
recognition distinguishes between surrounding noise and
the spoken word, and switching or response delays of the
mobile device (i.e., radio) is electronically compensated
for by the iVOX.
Bottom line, no words are
lost, it just plain works. Static tests with the
alan456R devices, and real-world testing using the
Midland GMRS/FRS radios or the Radio Shack CB
transceivers proved that the system provides fast, crisp
and clear communications at any time.
PowerCom Operating Device (L) and the iVox Activator Module
A Little Goodie
Acknowledging that the iVOX function really works well,
really well, the optional PowerCom Operating Device was
also put through its paces. In essence a mini-control,
the module is meant to be installed in an easy to reach
and safe spot on the motorcycle (for left-hand control).
Connected to the mini-DIN
(R) lead this little black box provides switching for:
push-to-talk (PTT) or intelligent voice control (iVOX);
muting (MUT) of any stereo audio signal to the rider
(but not the passenger); and, enter (ENT), a button to
answer and end a call, as allowed with a mobile phone.
Although the iVOX feature is
very hard to defeat in any environment, thanks in part
to its intelligent switching features and its ability to
be adjusted or ‘tuned’ at the module, for those who
want, or need, a positive switched environment, the
operating device module is the answer.
Unlike some other control
modules found with various accessory kits, the AKE item
is small enough to be mounted on or near most left hand
control modules and the included 200cm (79in) extension
cable can be discretely routed or permanently installed
out of the way.
Every PowerCom system includes the Intercom capability.
Unlike some other intercom systems that provide limited
access, this intercom allows the second individual to
initiate external communication sessions as well, all in
full duplex mode.
A second Nolan 102 Flip had
a HighVoice headset kit installed in it. When the second
helmet was connected via its flex cable, a small
connection click was heard and the intercom became
active. It is also VOX based and extremely fast.
Intercom volume and threshold adjustments can be made by
using the applicable ‘trimmers’ on the control module.
With the PowerCom operating
device plugged into the DIN ‘F”, there is no change in
the rider and intercom configuration, except that if the
PTT mode has been selected, that button has to be pushed
before any external sessions can be initiated by the
rider or intercom user.
Conclusion: Part One
As supplied and subsequently configured, the system
performed without fail. As long as the peripheral radio
or mobile phone devices were connected, communications
were available under a wide range of riding conditions.
The iVOX feature is amazing
-- it even coped with the noise levels experienced on
Speedway Boulevard at the peak of Bike Week. The
discrete trimmer controls allow critical input/output
levels to be adjusted quickly.
Components are well made;
connectors are simple and appear robust enough to
survive the long haul and prolonged use; and, flex and
extension cables allow almost any installation
configuration on virtually any motorcycle, or other
Outside of a faulty headset
flex cable, easily replaced from a spare unit, nothing
broke or failed to perform as advertised. Connections
are securely made by the DIN plugs, while MOSSCAP
end-caps and connection seals keep the elements out.
The ROGER One wired world is
good. As a simple and reliable system for rider and
intercom user, it is highly recommended. But, if a bit
more versatility is desired, venturing into the wireless
world is required. Fortunately, that ground has been
covered, so stay tuned for Part 2!
(Below) | wBW
Motorcycle Intercoms Home | wBW
Motorcycle Books, GPS, Electronics,
Training Videos, Clothing and More
At the wBW
Review: AKE PowerCom Motorcycle
|Available From: AKE
|Suggested Retail Price:
(Unconfirmed) ROGER One basic kit, ~ $425.00 USD,
PowerCom Bluetooth Helmet Set 101 - $304.50 USD;
HighVoice Headset (full-face kit) - $139.70 USD;
HighSound Headset (recommended kit) - $218.18
|Colour: Matte Black
2008 Certifications: FCC, IC, CE and Bluetooth
Standards NOTE: Pricing may fluctuate depending upon
the vagaries of currency valuations.
The webBikeWorld intercom evaluators always wear properly
fitted ear plugs while riding during the intercom evaluations and this is reflected
in thee opinions on sound quality and speaker volume. Your experience may
and probably will differ. Always wear high-quality, correctly fitted ear plugs
when riding a motorcycle (more
Note: For informational use only. All material and
photographs are Copyright © webWorld International, LLC - 2000-2013. All
rights reserved. See the webBikeWorld®
page. NOTE: Product specifications, features and details may
change or differ from our descriptions. Always check before purchasing. Read
Terms and Conditions!
►Your Comments and Feedback
Please send comments to
Comments are ordered from most recent to oldest.
Not all comments will be published (details
Comments may be edited for clarity prior to publication.
From "I.F." (1/09): " Could you
clarify couple of things about AKE PowerCom system?
1. Does PB-HC2 Bluetooth module which pairs with
Bluetooth helmet headset supports A2DP protocol?
According to the comments on your website, it does
NOT, but the author of
this AKE review claims that it does.
Because to me it's a very important feature, I need to
be 100% sure.
2. I'd like to use my ER6i earbuds on highways, thus I need be able to
disable AVC (automatic volume control) of PowerCom.
Because when using earbuds there is no need to change
the volume level at high speed. Is there any easy way to
HBC's Response: Based on information
collected during my original assessment, and in a couple
of emails from the AKE representative, but not from
their Tech Support, following information/responses
1. Based on the specifications of the original
components evaluated, including the PB-HC2 BT module,
and in a recent email (Jan 09) from an AKE
representative in DE, A2DP has not yet been implemented,
but it is coming.
Having read the article quoted from (Oct 07), stereo
would have been provided but only in a wired
environment, which I know was used, along with the BT
dongles during that evaluation.
A2DP functionality is something that I have followed
since the release of Bluetooth version 2.0 and even in
late 2007, I had not found any A2DP BT motorcycle
communication headsets on the market or at least
publicly available. Based on all information known
to me, I would have to say that it was very unlikely if
the PB-HC2 used for that evaluation was A2DP compliant -
I know the BT dongles we had were not.
Regarding noise levels and audio break-up, it is very
important to make sure that all the respective inputs
are balanced so as to not overload the input circuits
(this is quite common) and if provided, as most of the
Powercom systems do, both the i-VOX or VOX circuitry
along with the road noise compensation controls need to
This can only be done by the user, on the specific
motorcycle, under typical conditions. It took me
two to three days of subtle adjustments to get the
INNOVA 'tuned' just right, but once set, it was
virtually noise-free and all signals were clear (wired
environment), and the BT connection was almost as good,
albeit as a mono stream.
As a final point on A2DP, I have sent another email
to both the representative and AKE technical support and
if I get any further information regarding A2DP
compliance, etc, I will make sure it gets posted.
With A2DP the standard for so many current and
coming-to-market BT systems or with the ability to use a
simple A2DP BT dongle, the delay from AKE is somewhat
2. On most of the Powercom sytems there is no real
way to disable the AGC (or AVC feature) of the system as
it is a programmed function and to the best of my
knowledge, there is no external setting to turn it
However, if I remember correctly, the volume control
trimmer should allow some adjustment to a minimum start
level and as the AVC compensates for increased ambient
noise levels, the resultant volume might be lower than
if the system was in its default trimmer setting -
cannot confirm now as the equipment had to be returned
and I can only work from my notes and posted
On a related note, how are you going to use your ER6i
earbuds with the system? I had asked once and was
told there was not (yet) an interface adapter for a
standard 3.5mm or 2.5mm stereo headset jack and all the
identified outputs on the Powercom systems are mini-din
But I also know that a couple suppliers state they
have in-ear adapters for most systems on the market - it
would be good to know if this is what you are planning
on doing, or coming up with a custom workaround (not
hard using pin-outs).
From "J": "I read through all the
write-up on this new intercom device with
headset...sounds exciting...especially the headset.
As a suggestion, you might want to mention what each
setup is aiming for before you go into the details,
i.e., Zumo Bluetooth to headset, phone Bluetooth to Zumo,
hardwired connection to FRS, helmets Bluetooth to each
other (or each to the intercom box). Diagrams work
All the discussion of pairing is nice and
understandable considering all the past problems, but
one setup which the Zumo users are crying for was not
As you may know, one of the major drawbacks of the
Zumo 550 is the inability to stream "stereo" audio over
Bluetooth. What we need is a "device" that will
take the Zumo "hardwired" stereo audio out and mic
inputs and Bluetooth them to the headset. It seems
from the review that the headset described would be
ideal for this.
What is not clear and probably was not tested is
whether the intercom box itself can provide the
bidirectional...stereo out of Zumo to include MP3, phone
audio, GPS audio and phone "Bluetoothed" out of the
headset back through the intercom box...to the Zumo. In
short, a Bluetooth bidirectional connection between the
helmet and the "hardwired" connections in/out of the
In this case the Zumo would only use its pairing to
the cell phone...not to the Bluetooth helmet. The
helmet would only be paired with the intercom box.
The connections to the FRS would be as normal ... by
Typically the instruction manual does not go into
enough depth to see if this is possible. Maybe you
guys can comment....if you can understand my poor
attempt to explain what I'm trying to accomplish."
HBC's Response: To really
diagnose what the individual would like to have in the
way of functionality may take some further back and
forth. Having said that, I believe the objective
is known, however it is not achievable, at least not
with the current zumo 550 platform.
From the (questions), it would seem that (most of the
information is in the set of articles), or other related
communication system postings and there's possibly a
misunderstanding of all the technologies involved (not
sure if anyone does understand it all). But, hopefully
there will be some nuggets of information in the
1. Until Garmin implements support for the A2DP
protocol, outputs and inputs, via Bluetooth, will be
mono vice multi-channel (stereo). This is unfortunate
given Garmin's market base and consumer following.
The AKE combination described in the articles, along
with many other combinations available on the market
supports the zumo 550 audio out and microphone input
features via the zumo's Bluetooth connection to a
compatible Bluetooth headset, but just not in stereo.
2. The AKE systems evaluated, along with the proper
Bluetooth adapter and a Bluetooth headset do provide
duplex (bidirectional) support, but in mono vice stereo,
including all audio hosted by the zumo. Virtually all
systems on the market today are duplex.
3. I am puzzled by the "phone Bluetoothed out of the
headset back through the control module" comment - is
the intent here to have any phone connected via
Bluetooth to the headset also connected, by extension,
to the control module?
3. At the time the AKE evaluations were done, the
Bluetooth device used to provide the wireless interface
did not, and based on current literature, do not (yet)
provide A2DP support. However, other major players
in the motorcycle communication segment have or are
coming out with Bluetooth products (control modules,
adapters and Bluetooth headsets) that do support the
A2DP protocol. This trend should result in a more
dynamic audio environment as full duplex stereo audio
becomes the norm, appreciating audibility and
4. The AKE evaluations, along with others conducted
before and since then, have tested most zumo
configurations - wired and wireless. Using the
zumo as a communications or connectivity hub can be
done, but some limitations have to be appreciated, given
that it has only one wireed microphone input and one
wired stereo output, along with its Bluetooth
functionality. If a mobile phone is hardwired (via
the input and output plugs) to the zumo, then the
capabilities of that phone, if supported by the zumo,
can be utilized via the zumo's Bluetooth link to either
a Bluetooth enabled control module or a Bluetooth
5. For this reason, if more flexibility in adding and
configuring devices is desired, the control module
approach (wired and Bluetooth) is a good option -
peripherals can be connected by wire or a Bluetooth
channel. More and more larger scale and small
helmet-mounted systems support multiple Bluetooth
connections, and switching between the connections is
relatively simple - manually or based on a priority."
From "J.G.": "You neglected to
mention whether you tested the audio with/without
earplugs. I always wear them as I know you do, I’m
HBC's Reply: "...a good
observation, as I usually try to differentiate on any
noise or audio related evaluation...both the ROGER One
and INNOVA were used with and without earplugs (which we
also always wear, except for short test runs).
All the PowerCom headsets used do a good job of
providing clear audio at all times. All PowerCom
systems, including the ROGER One and INNOVA provide a
'driving noise' dependent or automatic volume control (AVC)
- system output is maintained at a steady level compared
to the ambient or environmental noise levels. The
AVC feature also works with the peripherals that are
plugged in as well although it is still prudent to set
individual device volumes to nominal levels, which
ensures a constant audio level being fed to the PowerCom
system from which the AVC takes over.
Outside of adjusting or fine-tuning the intercom
volume for an overall comfortable audio level, no other
adjustments were needed, with or without earplugs.
We both use a light foam-style earplug, basically just
for low-frequency attenuation and overall noise
dampening and with the quality of the headsets used,
very little is lost once the earplugs were put in.
However, everyone is different, and depending on the
individual and style of earplug used, some users might
find differentials between an open ear and one that is
From a PowerCom system perspective, the most
important controls used were the two road noise
compensation tuners...once they are set up or adjusted
as needed for the motorcycle environment, or a specific
surrounding, the noise filters and AVC functions do a