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Old 02-14-2010, 04:03 PM   #1
owrstrich OP
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Interphone F 4 Intercom Review

the story... i have been using the camos system since the first release of the bhs 600 4 years ago... i was upgraded to the bts 200... then i was upgraded to the bts 300... all 3 of the camos systems worked as advertised although was always yearning for more volume and longer battery life... now... its time to move on...

it turned painful looking through pages and pages and pages of reviews from around the world for the chatterbox... scala rider... interphone... midland... all of them... most of the info on the new scala rider g4 and interphone f4 came from distant lands where the units were initially released and folks have had some time with them... also talked to some of these folks... they were very helpful...

i decided to go with the interphone f4... one reason is because its waterproof... confirmed by reading euro reviews of folks who have been riding in torrential rain... it seems to be waterproof per their reports... another reason is the battery life... i know bluetooth sucks the battery down especially in full duplex intercom mode... but the reviews were consistent at about 10 to 11 hours of on time using the intercom + gps + cell + mp3... also... the sound quality and the ability to hear each other on the super slabb was important... really important... and the final significant reason was webbikeworlds assessment... its their favorite pre g4... we shall see post g4...

webbikeworld review + videos...

i checked around to find the best cash deal... the best customer service... the best return and warrant situation if needed...

i ended up scoring 2 units for $400 out of pocket delivered from wirelessriders.com... the folks... tony and dempsy were 100% spot on... they answered my questions... i paypaled the cash... they were shipped the same day... i received them in socal from missouri in 2 days... i gotts to say the motorcycle joints were about $50 more with some charging tax and some charging shipping and some tax and shipping free... but i just felt good about wirelessriders.com ... they are not just gadget guys... they are riders too...

upon receipt i charged the units and mounted them... all straight forward as per webbikeworld and the f4 manual...

advrider has been a tremendous information source to me... so im paying it forward with a review of the recently released unit... the interphione f 4 bluetooth intercom system...

these f 4 units are new out of the box... on initial full charge... paired in rider passenger intercom mode...

1... battery life test... enabled the intercom at 6am... disabled the intercom it at 9pm... its was still strong with no signs of low battery... thats 15 hours on... jabbering most the time except for 1 1/2 hours at lunch... so... im thinking 13 1/2 + hours in full duplex mode anyway...

2... music test... non bluetooth music player with wirevo bluetooth unit... paired instantly... worked as advertised...

3... cell phone test...bluetooth motorola... pared instantly... worked as advertised...

4... gps test... are you ch1tt1ng me... i aints gots no stinking gps...

5... the sound level... kbc ffr helmet with rider wearing 30db earplugs and hjc symax hlemet with passenger wearing 32db earplugs.. good to at least 100mph... probably much faster than that... the volume was never an issue... we had everybit of volume we wanted...

6... the sound quality... same helmets and earplugs as 5... perfect sound level and quality... wow... better than anticipated... with visors down the intercom is crystal clear and the cell phone is crystal clear and the music is stereo quality.... with visors up the wind noise made it hard to hear above 30mph... with visors down... perfect so far... im thinking if we were using open face helmets we would be sending these back because of the visor up noise... but since we ride with closed face helmets with the visors down... yeeeeeehaaaaa....

7... distance test... in hindsight i should have clicked off the tenths on the odo... o well... gut feeling... it was at least a 3/8 mile unobstructed and it had more distance to go...

just a note... the kbc ffr is an xxl so not much room for speakers... i used the supplied velcro to mount the speakers and mic... i had to fuss with it to get the speakers lined up to the ear canals... the hjc symax is xs so there is a deep gap between the ear and the helmet shell... i used armaflex foam tape to build up the speaker holes to move the speaker close to the ear canals... then i used the supplied velcro to mount the speakers and mic... it took some doing to get the speaker location right... but since we used these helmets for camos intercom... we had a hand up on 1st time installers...

the kit... everything seemed to be quality... even a spare mic wind sock was supplied...





1 wall charger will charge 2 units... less to pack... it all adds up...



the right speaker has a jack... would be nice if both speakers had a jack for ear buds...



i was concerned the mic boom would be too short for my enormous head...



its not really my head that is enormous... its my snood... i have an enormous snood...



i mounted both units with my own velcro... cause im gonna use them on more than 1 helmet... the supplied clip look to be fine quality and would be too much to mess with on an ongoing basis...



i mounted it high enough so the bottom speaker mic connector would not hit the ground with the helmet laid flat... also low enough so the flip up bar doesnt interfere with the mounting...





nosecone...



silicone...



there you go...

j o

owrstrich screwed with this post 02-14-2010 at 09:37 PM
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Old 02-15-2010, 03:46 AM   #2
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owrstrich,

Thanks for doing such a detailed review. I'm still doing my search for the right system for me and this one is on the short list along with the G4 and who knows?

Great work. I love this place.
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Old 02-15-2010, 04:38 AM   #3
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Is there a way to plug in earbuds? Ideally, I'd like a system that has helmet speakers for around town, while at the same time be able to plug in earbuds for longer jaunts.
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Old 02-15-2010, 08:23 PM   #4
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rodger that...

it was between the g4 and the f4 for us... i hate wasting money and buyers remorse... i did my due diligence and then some... but as everything... the f4 isnt for everyone... but no buyers remorse here... but it did take 4 hours to achieve full recharge on a totally dead battery...

i donated my camos stuff to the kingpin of the midwest motobrick bandits... he scored a set this year... now he has some spare ch1t if he needs it... including the ear bud adapter that i never got to use...

the f4... you would have to do some cutting and soldering for this system to accept ear buds...

i took camos 3 years for them to release an oem plug for ear buds... perhaps interphone will release an oem plug in the future...

yesterday we rolled another day ride with these things... the intercom was in full duplex mode for about 12 hours and was still going strong... the volume and sound quality was still perfect...

tonight i fitted the f4 to mickis brand new shoei multitech... its was way easier than the kbc or the hjc... i had forgot what a quality helmet was like...

j o
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Old 03-10-2010, 12:25 PM   #5
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waterproofing update...

i rode in torrential rain over the weekend... it took out my lumix camera which was in a zip lock with an apparent pin hole... but the rain had no adverse effect on the interphone f 4...

now i need to upgrade my cell phone cause the cell battery in the moto razr gets wiped out fast...

but for the f 4... battery life and sound quality and everything overall still +1...

j o
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Old 03-10-2010, 10:18 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by owrstrich
the f4... you would have to do some cutting and soldering for this system to accept ear buds...


Have you actually tried buds? In your pic above, the jack in the right speaker is a 3 conductor pin. Just wondering if you would still get stereo out of it if you plugged in buds. I can't see any other reason to use a stereo 3 conductor pin vs a mono 2-conductor going to just the right speaker.


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Old 03-12-2010, 04:55 PM   #7
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interesting... im gonna try it tonight... will let you know...

ok... jvc marshmallow ear buds... the jvc jack is larger than the interphone jack... must be 3.5mm vs 2.5mm... me no got...

j o
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Old 02-13-2011, 11:25 AM   #8
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Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by houlster View Post


Have you actually tried buds? In your pic above, the jack in the right speaker is a 3 conductor pin. Just wondering if you would still get stereo out of it if you plugged in buds. I can't see any other reason to use a stereo 3 conductor pin vs a mono 2-conductor going to just the right speaker.


--Dan
Sorry for bringing back an old thread, but with over 100k+ views, i'm sure i'm not the only one wondering and after reading this entire thread, no confirmed answer.

Has anyone tried plugging in 2.5mm ear buds to these? It's my deciding factor in purchasing them. I've emailed BlueAnt, but haven't gotten a response back yet.
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Old 03-28-2010, 11:54 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by owrstrich
advrider has been a tremendous information source to me... so im paying it forward with a review of the recently released unit... the interphione f 4 bluetooth intercom system...
j o

Thank you kind sir, saved me a hell of a lot of searching.
12hr battery - check
Sound quality - check

I often go weeks without elctricity grid. So I would like to be able to charge off the bike. I may not be able to source the 12v travel charger in time. Can someone please check on the standard charger what the output Volt and Amp ratings are?
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Old 03-31-2010, 08:32 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by owrstrich
... i have been using the camos system since the first release of the bhs 600 4 years ago... i was upgraded to the bts 200... then i was upgraded to the bts 300... all 3 of the camos systems worked as advertised although was always yearning for more volume and longer battery life... now... its time to move on...
Sounds like you have had some experience with some various headsets. Do yo think that this new F4 system has a superior Microphone to the other systems you've tried? How do you think the sound of your phone conversations with the F4 compare with the BTS systems you had?

The reason I'm asking: I currently have a BTS-200 like you had and have absolutely had it with the crappy mic on that thing. Tired of my phone conversations going like this: "WHAT? I can't hear a thing you are saying... WHAT?" I've tried the wired and the boom mic, turning up the sensitivity, they both are horrible. MP3 music is pretty good, but that mic, ugh! Before I had the BTS-200 I had a Chatterbox XBI which had a great mic apparently as my phone conversation went more like "Wow, you are on a motorcycle? Really?" But the XBI was not acceptable to me because it would not re-connect to my phone without manually redialing the last number (IMHO a proper bluetooth headset should auto-connect to a paired phone when turned on!) The BTS-200 definitely has better speakers for MP3. I'm ready to throw in the towel on the BTS and move on to a next generation headset where I can get the best of both worlds, good speakers, good mic.
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Old 03-31-2010, 01:25 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsquarewi
Sounds like you have had some experience with some various headsets. Do yo think that this new F4 system has a superior Microphone to the other systems you've tried? How do you think the sound of your phone conversations with the F4 compare with the BTS systems you had?

The reason I'm asking: I currently have a BTS-200 like you had and have absolutely had it with the crappy mic on that thing. Tired of my phone conversations going like this: "WHAT? I can't hear a thing you are saying... WHAT?" I've tried the wired and the boom mic, turning up the sensitivity, they both are horrible. MP3 music is pretty good, but that mic, ugh! Before I had the BTS-200 I had a Chatterbox XBI which had a great mic apparently as my phone conversation went more like "Wow, you are on a motorcycle? Really?" But the XBI was not acceptable to me because it would not re-connect to my phone without manually redialing the last number (IMHO a proper bluetooth headset should auto-connect to a paired phone when turned on!) The BTS-200 definitely has better speakers for MP3. I'm ready to throw in the towel on the BTS and move on to a next generation headset where I can get the best of both worlds, good speakers, good mic.
I think you'd be happy with the F4. No complaints from callers AND my iPhone understands voice commands even at speed and that bitch is notoriously picky

Also - the F4 and iPhone pair back up flawlessly when you turn them on. Now if Apple would just release a full implementation of AVRCP we'd be in tall cotton.
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Old 03-31-2010, 02:28 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmwhd
I think you'd be happy with the F4. No complaints from callers AND my iPhone understands voice commands even at speed and that bitch is notoriously picky

Also - the F4 and iPhone pair back up flawlessly when you turn them on. Now if Apple would just release a full implementation of AVRCP we'd be in tall cotton.
Didn't someone say it didn't work well with the iPhone?
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Old 04-04-2010, 09:06 AM   #13
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the microphone is really sensitive... visor open = annoying wind noise... but no distortion or tunnel or echo sounds otherwise... its the best ive had...

i just hooked up the phone to make sure it all worked and so i know how to do it in the future... i have not been using the phone so im not sure how the operation compares on an ongoing basis... but i can say the sound in n out was the best ive had...

after sorting it all out to make sure it worked as advertised... we are just using the intercom... which i can report is waterproof to date...

j o




Sounds like you have had some experience with some various headsets. Do yo think that this new F4 system has a superior Microphone to the other systems you've tried? How do you think the sound of your phone conversations with the F4 compare with the BTS systems you had?

The reason I'm asking: I currently have a BTS-200 like you had and have absolutely had it with the crappy mic on that thing. Tired of my phone conversations going like this: "WHAT? I can't hear a thing you are saying... WHAT?" I've tried the wired and the boom mic, turning up the sensitivity, they both are horrible. MP3 music is pretty good, but that mic, ugh! Before I had the BTS-200 I had a Chatterbox XBI which had a great mic apparently as my phone conversation went more like "Wow, you are on a motorcycle? Really?" But the XBI was not acceptable to me because it would not re-connect to my phone without manually redialing the last number (IMHO a proper bluetooth headset should auto-connect to a paired phone when turned on!) The BTS-200 definitely has better speakers for MP3. I'm ready to throw in the towel on the BTS and move on to a next generation headset where I can get the best of both worlds, good speakers, good mic.
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Old 04-04-2010, 02:27 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by owrstrich
the microphone is really sensitive... visor open = annoying wind noise... but no distortion or tunnel or echo sounds otherwise... its the best ive had...

i just hooked up the phone to make sure it all worked and so i know how to do it in the future... i have not been using the phone so im not sure how the operation compares on an ongoing basis... but i can say the sound in n out was the best ive had...
Good to hear. I went ahead and ordered one up. Also ordered the "Flat Mic" for full face lids so hopefully that' mic will work out just as well. Should be here in a couple days and cannot wait to get that Camos out of my life.
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Old 04-06-2010, 07:58 PM   #15
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I recently bought two Interphone F4s. I use them for rider and passenger. So far they are great! There is slight wind noise when traveling at higher speeds but not enough to be annoying. I have an ipod touch that I was able to connect to it and it worked great. There is a 1-2 second delay when you skip to the next song, but that is ok with me! I will write a more thorough review once I use them more extensively.
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