Which Sena Bluetooth Intercom Is Right for You?
Date Posted:30 July 2012
Motorcycle riders everywhere are plugging into the benefits of Bluetooth intercom headsets, and Sena is a name that’s synonymous with quality gear at a great price. But there seems to be a bit of confusion about the different Sena models. People regularly ask us what the difference is between the Sena SMH5 and Sena SMH10 headsets. So, here’s a rundown on both motorcycle intercom models and the main differences between them.
The SMH5 is primarily designed with scooter riders in mind. It’s smaller and lighter than the SMH10 and allows up to 400 metres of talk distance between riders.
It’s the perfect model for scooter commuting or courier work, with up to eight hours talk-time, up to seven days standby and a handy micro USB cable for charging.
The SMH5 also has an optional detachable microphone, so if you don’t feel like talking, you can listen to your music or instructions from your GPS, without having a mic bobbing around in front of your chin.
The next step up in Bluetooth headsets, the SMH10 is designed for serious bikers and groups. It supports four-way multi-pair conferencing, which means four riders can talk together within a 900-metre range (that’s nearly a kilometre!). It also provides up to 10 days standby and 12 hours talk time, which is easily a day’s ride.
The SMH10 has a larger jog dial wheel than the SMH5, so it’s easy to use with your gloves on, and it supports VOX (voice activated commands) as well.
The helmet clamp kit it comes with has a special jack that allows you to use non-Bluetooth devices with it as well. There are also optional clamp kits available made to suit different helmets and different requirements (e.g., if you’d rather use your own earbuds, that’s not a problem).
You can get the SMH10 in a single or a twin pack, and both come with a choice of charging options (micro USB, bike cig charger or AC power adaptor) and helmet speakers. The twin pack has two of everything, which makes it ideal for splitting and sharing with a fellow rider.
So let’s recap. The main differences at a glance are:
- Intercom range -- up to 400 metres
- Talk time -- up to eight hours
- Standby -- up to seven days
- VOX support -- no
- Charging -- micro USB.
- Intercom range -- up to 900 metres
- Talk time -- up to 12 hours
- Standby -- up to 10 days
- VOX support -- yes
- Charging -- three charging options.
If you just buzz around town on a scooter and don’t need lots of features, then the SMH5 would be ideal for you. If you ride with a group or are into road trips, then the SMH10 would be more your speed.
At the end of the day though, whichever model you choose, both will provide you with a much more relaxed, safe and enjoyable ride.
Both Sena models are software upgradeable via the micro USB port, and both are supported by a two-year warranty.