Cardo Scala G4 earbud mod

Discussion in 'Vendors' started by JetGrl, Jun 4, 2011.

  1. JetGrl

    JetGrl FJR Pilot

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    Hello inmates,

    My name is Eileen Kelleher. I am a retired IT worker and former professional electronic technician. I have been riding motorcycles since I moved away from my parent's house and they couldn't tell me I couldn't anymore :wink: (many moons ago).

    I used a Sena SMH10 for about a year before I gave up on it due to so many reliability problems, I was tired of completing rides in silence due to technical difficulties and breakages. They were good customer service wise but the product just doesn't last.

    I stepped up to the Cardo Scala G4 unit and it works much better but with the smaller speakers it just didn't put out enough volume to be heard over the wind noise and earplugs like the Sena could (when it was working).

    After some googleing I found the thread on this board describing how to put in a headphone jack and use earbuds. Seemed like just the ticket, it worked perfectly. I had to get a volume control to cut down the volume to the earbuds.

    With a little research I found the S-Plug in canal earbuds with 22" cord (plugup.com and cyclebots.com). They offer all day comfort and no interference with the helmet. Plugup.com has the volume control headphone adapter.

    I saw others were charging more than $40 to mod the G4 and then left a little jack on a pigtail coming out of the clamp, just putting the jack inside seemed much cleaner.

    I will do the mod for you for $30. Just send me an email and I will send you my contact information so you can send your clamp to me. Just send the clamp along with a self addressed return envelope and I can get it turned around for you the same day, Paypal or check.

    I will even trust you for the $30. You can enclose it or send it back after receiving your modded clamp. I'm just happy I can help you guys out.

    Eileen Kelleher
    eileen.kelleher@gmail.com

    [​IMG]

    That's me wearing my earbuds on a recent SS1000, 16 hours of use in 1 day :ear The wire going down to the tank bag connects to a mixer with my ipod, gps, and radar detector mixed and prioritized and jacked into the mp3 input.
    #1
  2. GB

    GB . Administrator

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    Interesting mod.. Would you happen to have pics of your mod?
    #2
  3. JetGrl

    JetGrl FJR Pilot

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    #3
  4. rockinrog

    rockinrog Long timer

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    So once this mod is done.. do you stick the ear buds in your ears ...then put the helmet on and then plug the ear buds into the g4?
    #4
  5. GB

    GB . Administrator

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    Eileen, I emailed you a query.
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  6. JetGrl

    JetGrl FJR Pilot

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    Yes, you can plug it in before you put it on as well, that is the way I do it. The jack is right at the back and is pretty easy to use even if you plug it in after you put on the helmet.

    Many people are used to riding with earbuds already since they like to listen to an mp3 player while riding. The G4 is really easy to hear this way, no matter how much wind and/or engine noise is going on.

    FYI
    Eileen
    #6
  7. GB

    GB . Administrator

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    I'm wondering if it's possible to do the mod for the earphones and maintain sound to the speakers so when someone needs an ear canal break from the earphones, you can still listen through the speakers?
    #7
  8. biggziff

    biggziff Funk Soul Bruvah

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    Yes, by adding a male plug to the speaker's wiring (which is what I did years ago with the Q series) you can switch back and forth. I eventually got tired of inserting/removing the canalphones and simply added some backing to the speaker's mounting so they were placed closer to my ears which made them usable at any speed at very low volumes and with foam ear plugs when on longer trips. YMMV
    #8
  9. DRIVER

    DRIVER Adventurer

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    I would think it'd be possible to install a plug on the speaker wires to allow you to switch back and forth. If trying to run both the speakers and the ear buds you might find the unit does not have enough amplification power. But we'll never know without trying. Messing with the small speaker wires might be a test of patience from all descriptions but it can be done.
    #9
  10. JetGrl

    JetGrl FJR Pilot

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    Yes, that is exactly how it works. You can also put on the ear buds, plug them into the helmet, and then put the helmet on. That way you don't have to plug it in by touch.
    #10
  11. JetGrl

    JetGrl FJR Pilot

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    I've done this mod now for several of the inmates here. A couple of them have posted back to the original mod posting here: http://www.advrider.com/forums/showpost.php?p=16301166&postcount=53

    I have had questions about the ear buds and setup that I use. I tried using ear buds last year once and gave up on it because the buds I had pressed on the padding inside the helmet and irritated my ears. After I did this mod I got a new set of ear buds from cyclebots.com, the S-Plug ear buds. They are very soft and pliable and fit inside the ear so they don't rub or irritate your ears. I have worn them for 16 hours straight with total comfort. I also have a friend that wears them all the time, he has run in 2 Iron Butt Rallies (11 days, 11,000 miles).

    The plugup.com website has a volume control extension cable that can be used as well to take care of the increase in volume when using ear buds. http://www.plugup.com/volume_control_stereo_extension_cable_p/ad vc.htm

    If you purchase the S-Plug ear buds in the 22" length (short) and use this extension to cut down the volume you can then use the G4 normally. The S-Plugs can also be found on the same website: http://www.plugup.com/the_S_plug_earcanal_stereo_earbuds_p/s 22-3.5-4.5.htm

    Eileen
    #11
  12. SkooterG

    SkooterG n00b

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    Nice photo! Since no credit was given, I wonder who took that great shot?

    :D
    #12
  13. JetGrl

    JetGrl FJR Pilot

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    Some guy who kept riding in front of me.... I had to follow him for over 1000 miles before I could get around him. It is a great photo though, thanks!

    See - on this forum I can be an FJR Pilot instead of a FNG.

    I really did have a good time on that ride though, makes me want to go back and spend some time seeing the things we sped by the first time.

    Do you have a good Bun Burner Gold route? I felt like I could have kept going the last time. I loved following the Rally too!
    #13
  14. intr1gue

    intr1gue Been here awhile

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    I'd like to know that as well. For long distance riding I'd ride with earbuds, but when dual-sporting with my wife, it would be nice to just be able to put on and take off the helmets as needed without the additional steps of mounting the earspeakers each time just to have connectivity (that and we're riding at WAY lower speeds generally on trails/unpaved, so windnoise is much less of a factor).

    The options I see are these:

    Put the 3.5mm socket inline with a splitter that cuts power over to headphones when plugged in, or speakers when headphones don't complete the circuit.
    Put a 3.5mm plug onto the speakers after detaching them, so they can be plugged into the same jack; user can then install speakers in helmet, and switch from one to the other just by inserting the plug (velcroed to something when not in use) into the newly installed jack.

    All this said, I'm totally theoretical about this, and have ZERO skill with a soldering iron and would rather not learn on a $200+ piece of kit, so I'd still want you to do the mod if that's ok. What would you charge to do either of the above?

    --Ranjan

    #14
  15. rockinrog

    rockinrog Long timer

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    Paging jetgrl to the white courtesy phone.
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  16. soyanarchisto

    soyanarchisto Long timer

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    With 9 posts my guess is she doesn't spend a lot of time here.
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  17. JetGrl

    JetGrl FJR Pilot

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    I have put a plug on the speaker wires after removing them so you can plug them back in to the new jack.

    I have done it for those who asked. I will do it at the same time as the mod for an additional $5.

    It's not too hard since I desolder the speaker wires and remove them the ends are bare and tinned so I just solder them onto a plug, remove the old strain relief, and put the new one on.

    Regards...





    Sent from my EVO using Tapatalk
    #17
  18. intr1gue

    intr1gue Been here awhile

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    can you PM me your contact info so I can get mine to you as soon as they arrive? I'll be picking up a pair of G4's for myself and my wife and we'll want this mod done ASAP. Thanks!

    --Ranjan

    #18
  19. JetGrl

    JetGrl FJR Pilot

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    PM Sent...
    #19
  20. Mad Kaw

    Mad Kaw purveyor of fine BS

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    Thanks Eilieen! Very cool mod and a professional job to boot!
    #20