Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 03-25-2019, 10:41 PM   #1
Veteran Member
 
City: Key West
Country: USA
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 85
Intercom Headsets (Crew Communicators)

Seeking to purchase intercom headsets. Eartec seemed a likely buy, but multiple reviews reported problems with battery life. Any recommendations based on actual experience with intercom headsets (whatever the brand) would be appreciated.
Thank you,
G
__________________
Advertisement

Uncleg44 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-26-2019, 03:45 AM   #2
Veteran Member
 
City: Puyallup, WA
Country: United States
Join Date: Jan 2018
Posts: 82
We love the eartec ultraLite. We use the single ear one. Super clear sound and I dont have to yell at the admiral anymore. Oh wait, I meant her yelling at me haha
__________________

Mgtgrafix is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-26-2019, 06:52 AM   #3
Veteran Member
 
Flatswing's Avatar
 
City: Windmill Harbour, Hilton Head Island, SC
Country: United States
Vessel Name: River Girl
Vessel Model: 2004 DeFever 49 RPH
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncleg44 View Post
Seeking to purchase intercom headsets. Eartec seemed a likely buy, but multiple reviews reported problems with battery life. Any recommendations based on actual experience with intercom headsets (whatever the brand) would be appreciated.
Thank you,
G
We have had great success with the Sena SP10's. Comfortable and easy to use. If you need 3 communicating simultaneously, apparently a bit more challenging. But using 2 is easy. Highly recommend.
__________________
Jeremy
Flatswing is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-26-2019, 07:05 AM   #4
Guru
 
ranger42c's Avatar
 
City: Maryland
Country: USA
Vessel Model: 42' Sportfish
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 4,478
Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncleg44 View Post
Seeking to purchase intercom headsets. Eartec seemed a likely buy, but multiple reviews reported problems with battery life. Any recommendations based on actual experience with intercom headsets (whatever the brand) would be appreciated.
Thank you,
G
Search here on keyword SENA for several threads. Then search on keyword HEADSET for more threads on other brands. There's some overlap, but it looks like there's about 40 threads or so...

We have SENA SPH10s...

-Chris
__________________
South River, Chesapeake Bay
ranger42c is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-26-2019, 08:19 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
City: Florida
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Mersea
Vessel Model: Marquis 59
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 200
Yep, lots of posting on here on the topic.


General consensus seems to be either SENA or Eartec.


We went with Eartec and had heard about the battery problem prior to purchasing. Problems seems to be it is really easy for the slave unit to not be turned off, thus running the batteries down. We take the batteries out when not using and either put them on the charger (if they need a charge) or in the case.


Whether you wind up with Sena or Eartec, both will do a good job.


One of the most impactful decisions we have made in boating. The problems of communicating can create a lot of tension and friction. Makes life so much more peaceful.
FootballFan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-26-2019, 08:21 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
AdmiralS's Avatar
 
City: Stony Point, NY
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Varka
Vessel Model: Ranger Tugs R-27 & Helmsman 43 PH
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 107
SENA for our motorcycles (Haven't been entirely thrilled with them)

EarTec for the boat. Very happy with them. KISS - Keep It Simple.

We also have these pillow and shirts as reminders of why we need the headsets...

AdmiralS is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-26-2019, 09:06 AM   #7
Guru
 
Codger2's Avatar
 
City: San Diego
Country: US
Vessel Name: "Sandpiper"
Vessel Model: 2006 42' Ocean Alexander Sedan
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 5,827
Quote:
Originally Posted by ranger42c View Post
We have SENA SPH10s...
We do also but find them to be "uncomfortable."

Notice: They don't go over the top of your head .....they hang on the back of your ears! (Not comfortable but they work great!)
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Ear Phones.jpg
Views:	46
Size:	113.6 KB
ID:	86888  
__________________
Codger 1941.. Constant pursuit of the ultimate SoCal Cruising boat.
Codger2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-27-2019, 12:08 AM   #8
Senior Member
 
City: Florida
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Mersea
Vessel Model: Marquis 59
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 200
We went with the Eartec - ultralite - one ear covered - still can listen to the radio as we are coming in.


Personal preference which brand - but chose one and go with it.
FootballFan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-27-2019, 12:52 AM   #9
Guru
 
Drake's Avatar
 
City: Seabrook, Texas
Country: Independent Republic of Texas
Vessel Name: Small World
Vessel Model: Defever 50
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 604
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mgtgrafix View Post
We love the eartec ultraLite. We use the single ear one. Super clear sound and I dont have to yell at the admiral anymore. Oh wait, I meant her yelling at me haha
X2. Also, we have had no problems with battery life. But, we did buy an extra set of batteries so we coukd always have a set charged just in case one went flat at an inopportune time.
Drake is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-27-2019, 03:28 AM   #10
Veteran Member
 
City: Puyallup, WA
Country: United States
Join Date: Jan 2018
Posts: 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drake View Post
X2. Also, we have had no problems with battery life. But, we did buy an extra set of batteries so we coukd always have a set charged just in case one went flat at an inopportune time.
No problems with batteries also. They are also more water resistant that I thought. Admiral went for a swim docking a few weeks ago and the headset was completely under water. Still works awesome. Oh and the admiral is ok too..lol
Mgtgrafix is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2019, 06:22 PM   #11
Guru
 
syjos's Avatar
 
City: Gig Harbor
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Sandpiper
Vessel Model: Bluewater 40 Pilothouse Trawler
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 684
Eartec redesigned the Ultralites in the spring 2018 to resolve the battery issue. The redesigned headset has HD printed under Ultralite on the earcup.

We purchased the double cup version since it fits more snugly on the head. No issues with hearing external sound because the microphone is always on and picks up outside sound. Neat feature; rotate the microphone boom and mic will shut off.

Owned the belt pack Eartecs in the past and they worked without fault for over 10 years. Switched because the headset was wired and the cord got in the way.
syjos is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2019, 06:23 PM   #12
Guru
 
syjos's Avatar
 
City: Gig Harbor
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Sandpiper
Vessel Model: Bluewater 40 Pilothouse Trawler
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 684
This is a review I posted on Amazon:

I purchased a pair of Sena SPH 10 headsets from Amazon in 2013 for my wife and I to communicate with each other during docking maneuvers on our 40 foot powerboat.
Prior to the Sena, we owned two versions of Eartec headsets which were still functioning perfectly when replaced at 7 and 10 years.

The Sena worked great for our purpose. They are light and easy to use. At least 10 boating friends bought the same headsets based on our recommendation.
Unfortunately after 5 years, the headband on one headset broke during a two month cruise making it unusable.

These headsets are not designed or manufactured well. The U shaped headband that goes over your head has a metal reinforcement in it. The connection of the U shaped headband to the earpieces is flimsy unreinforced plastic. The plastic connection is C shaped to allow wires to pass through it from one earpiece to the other. Placing the headset on your head require the earpieces spread apart to clear the ears. The strong resistance of the U shaped headband with the steel reinforcement causes the plastic connection to bend and twist, eventually breaking the plastic.

I contacted Sena to order a replacement for the broken plastic connection and found that a replacement part was not available.

One Sena SPH 10 is $179. A pair of headsets that cost $360, advertised as usable for outdoors, industrial, bicycling and motorcycles should be rugged enough to last longer than 5 years or have replacement parts available for purchase. We use the headsets approximately 50 times per year on our boat, which I don't consider excessive. We are careful mature people and did not spread the headband excessively nor abuse them in any way. A few of my friends have had the headband break shortly after the two year warranty expired. One friend purchased a replacement for the broken set and the second pair recently broke too. A search on Google revealed too many complaints about the SPH10 broken headband connector. Many reported broken connector after one or two uses and had Sena replace them on warranty. They report that the replacement SPH 10’s broke in the same place quickly. Some of the complaints were on Sena’s website.

Prior to ordering the SPH 10’s I read several reviews reporting broken headbands so contacted Sena prior to ordering the SPH10 to inquire about the broken headband issues. I was assured by a Sena rep that the connector had been redesigned to be stronger.

My recommendation is to not buy the Sena SPH10. If you already have one, examine the headband connectors carefully for cracks or twisting of the plastic. If you find any deformation or cracking of the plastic connector and are within the warranty period, file a warranty claim and return the set to Sena. If you are still within Amazons return period, I strongly recommend returning the headset for a refund and buy from a different manufacturer.

If you have a broken SPH 10 and the warranty is expired, I would still contact Sena and complain. Additionally, describe your experience with the Sena SPH 10 on Amazon, Facebook, forums, blogs and any other place you can think of. Report Sena to the Boat US Consumer Protection Division. Maybe if we get enough disgruntled Sena SPH 10 owners to complain, it may convince Sena to redesign the connector and/or manufacture extra connectors to sell via their parts department.

We cannot allow Sena get away with shoddy product and irresponsible product support. An ethical manufacturer would redesign the connector and offer the replacement part to their customers. I have no problem with buying a replacement part for a 5 year old product. I do have a problem with a company that is aware of a problem with one of their products and does nothing about it.
syjos is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2019, 06:57 PM   #13
Guru
 
syjos's Avatar
 
City: Gig Harbor
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Sandpiper
Vessel Model: Bluewater 40 Pilothouse Trawler
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 684
Follow up on above Sena review.

Amazon Customer Service offered me a 30% discount on a new pair of Sena Sph10's.

I said no thank you. They wanted to know what I wanted and I replied that I wanted the Sph10's off the Amazon website to force Sena to redesign the headsets or offer replacemen parts for purchase. The Amazon CS rep said the could not due that.

I emailed Jeff Bezos; jeff@amazon.com about the problem with Sena.

An executive VP emailed me the next day.

Explained everything and he extended the 30% discount on any headset, I said no thank you.

He emailed back and said check the Amazon website for the Sph 10.

It was off Amazon. The other Sena products were listed but not the Sph10. Yeah for persistence.

The Sph10's were off the Amazon website for exactly 6 weeks. Enough punishment? I don't think so since Sena has not redesigned the headset when they reappeared. And no replacement parts!

Received a final email from the Amazon exec. He wanted to tell me that Jeff Bezos thanked me for bringing this problem to their attention. Added that the 30% discount applied to any future headset purchase for one year.

Waited until last month to purchase to ensure that all the older versions of the Ultralites were out of the supply chain.

Sena contacts me often, offering to replace my out of warranty headset for free if I delete the Amazon review.
syjos is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2019, 07:23 PM   #14
Veteran Member
 
Cruzer's Avatar
 
City: H20
Country: USA
Vessel Name: OLOH
Vessel Model: 60 Motor Yacht
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 62
We upgraded to the Ultralites at the end of last year and have cruised extensively with them since including a just-completed run from Key West to New York. They worked flawlessly and we have never experienced battery issues. We even accidentally left them on overnight with no problems following morning.

This is a thread from last year that I chimed in on when looking to replace my original, reliable Eartecs: Marriage Savers....
This was my post from that thread regarding my experience with Senas...

Quote:
I have had the original Eartecs since 2010 and always had great success with them. When they suddenly started acting wonky after seven years of service I was interested in a self-contained headset with newer tech and thought the Senas would be the way to go based on my research. I ordered the "Expand 02's" as they were a newer release than the SPH10's. Obviously people have had good success with Sena so I'm not sure if I got a bum pair or if trying the Expands over the 10's was a mistake for our purposes but the level of interference we experienced made them unusable. Separately, as was my concern, the slight bluetooth delay was too annoying to tolerate for us when we were within earshot of each other with the headsets on as is the case for some moments when we are using them. That may not bother some but for us it will probably make any bluetooth setup a non-starter.

I was pleased to find that an inexpensive replacement headset from Eartec solved my initial issue. I am happy to hear that people like the Ultralites as now that my original headsets are acting up again I plan to give them a try. It will be nice to shed the belt pack.
__________________
-The M/Y OLOH Crew
Blog: www.myoloh.com/blog
Cruzer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2019, 08:36 PM   #15
chc
Senior Member
 
chc's Avatar
 
City: Essex, MD
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Scooter
Vessel Model: 1984 Californian 34 LRC
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 337
Have had great success with the Eartec Ultralites. Routinely check battery levels and make sure they are charged every other month; more if used heavily. No problems to date, and have found it makes crew comm a pleasure
__________________
Scooter
1984 Californian 34 LRC
www.scootersvoyage.blogspot.com
chc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2019, 08:53 PM   #16
Guru
 
dhays's Avatar
 
City: Gig Harbor
Country: United States
Vessel Name: Kinship
Vessel Model: North Pacific 43
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 8,216
Sorry Simon that you had bad experience with the Sena headband. I’ve been using those now for 3 years without any problems. Their performance has been great. I will keep an eye on the headband however.
__________________
Regards,

Dave
SPOT page
dhays is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2019, 09:05 PM   #17
Veteran Member
 
City: Key West
Country: USA
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 85
Follow up: I settled on a bluetooth earpiece called V6C Vnetphone. It is a single small earpiece with a wire to a very small transceiver that can go in a shirt or shoulder pocket or armband. Initially I had a great deal of trouble programming the two in sync - probably because I'm not at all tech-savvy. But they are now operative, unobtrusive and have great clarity. My co-captain places the transceiver in his shirt pocket. I run the cord inside my shirt to the transceiver which is in my pants' pocket. We depart Key West Monday (13 May) to travel ICW to New England so they will get a vigorous trial run.
Uncleg44 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2019, 09:09 PM   #18
Guru
 
menzies's Avatar
 
City: Jacksonville
Country: USA
Vessel Name: SONAS
Vessel Model: Grand Alaskan 53
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 4,458
Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncleg44 View Post
Follow up: I settled on a bluetooth earpiece called V6C Vnetphone. It is a single small earpiece with a wire to a very small transceiver that can go in a shirt or shoulder pocket or armband. Initially I had a great deal of trouble programming the two in sync - probably because I'm not at all tech-savvy. But they are now operative, unobtrusive and have great clarity. My co-captain places the transceiver in his shirt pocket. I run the cord inside my shirt to the transceiver which is in my pants' pocket. We depart Key West Monday (13 May) to travel ICW to New England so they will get a vigorous trial run.
Interesting. Cost?
menzies is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2019, 09:16 PM   #19
Veteran Member
 
City: Key West
Country: USA
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 85
Check their site, Menzies, for up-to-date cost.
__________________

Uncleg44 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:23 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2006 - 2012