Interphone F 4 Intercom Review

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by owrstrich, Feb 14, 2010.

  1. metaljockey

    metaljockey Dodgy SOB

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2005
    Oddometer:
    279
    Location:
    Eastern Cape, South Africa

    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?
    #21
  2. RadioRider

    RadioRider n00b

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2
    Both the Sena SMH10 and Interphone F4 are very easy to use. The Sena is a long range unit (900+meters) and the F4 is small and forms to helmet like a leech. The Sena is a bit easier to remember how to use after you set it in the closet awhile. Not many places sell the radio...best is Radio Rider.com, they ship worldwide too.
    #22
  3. RichardU

    RichardU Let's Ride

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2004
    Oddometer:
    904
    Location:
    Marietta, GA
    Here is how I'm using the F4:

    iPhone connects via Bluetooth to Zumo
    Zumo connects via Bluetooth to F4 (specify "phone only" mode in the Zumo)
    Zumo connects via stereo output jack to stereo Y cable
    Radar connects to stereo Y cable
    Stereo Y cable connects to WiRevo bluetooth dongle
    WiRevo connects via Bluetooth to F4 (stereo)
    F4 connects via Bluetooth to other F4

    It works. All is made possible by the "Phone Only" mode in the Zumo, which allows the Bluetooth connection to only transmit phone, while music and GPS instructions continue to be output via the speaker jack. Phone is first priority in the F4 and Music, GPS and Radar are second priority.

    I've had a Starcom1 for years. This allows me to do everything just as well but without the wire.
    #23
  4. Kieth

    Kieth Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    384
    Location:
    Tulsa, Oklahoma
    Be aware, the zumo 550 does not support stereo bluetooth protocols, this is why you have to use the output jack and then rebroadcast the stereo music via another bluetooth device. Note the 660 and 665 do have stereo protocol bluetooth available so one would not need the additional bluetooth device unless you wanted to convert the signal for a radar detector or other device. Still do not see how one can get really good bike to bike with these systems. I talk 2 miles on my Kenwood radio with a Autocom.
    #24
  5. RichardU

    RichardU Let's Ride

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2004
    Oddometer:
    904
    Location:
    Marietta, GA
    Radios have longer ranges, but there are some disadvantages including interference from other radios, and the hassle of push-to-talk. I'm usually not that far from my riding partner, and if we really get separated, I can typically call on the phone.
    #25
  6. rider1150gsadv

    rider1150gsadv € Fl Keys Fishing Guide €

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2003
    Oddometer:
    5,914
    Location:
    Florida Keys/Ft Likkertail , USA
    Impressive reviews for the F4 !! I have an older Interphone for my cellphone and it has been flawless with long battery life and clear speach and sound. Most of my clients don't even know I am on the bike. The F4 has my attention as a replacement in due time..
    #26
  7. R_W

    R_W wannabe

    Joined:
    May 3, 2005
    Oddometer:
    4,126
    Location:
    Kansas
    Me, too. Only gripe with the interphone is that I cannot stream music or radio. I don't care it isn't stereo, but I would like to listen to traffic reports while commuting.
    #27
  8. bmwhd

    bmwhd God Bless Texas

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2003
    Oddometer:
    1,476
    Location:
    Texas
    I've been using mine for almost two weeks now on my daily commute. Streaming iPhone music and taking calls for 30 min each way every day. Haven't run the initial charge out yet so I'm happy with that. Easy to use and very clear sound.

    Since I'm in the dark ages GPS-wise (Garmin 2720), I need to sort out that plus my 8500's audio alerts which used to come in to my wired headset via a mixer but otherwise I'm good.
    #28
  9. bsquarewi

    bsquarewi wee-nie

    Joined:
    May 1, 2007
    Oddometer:
    63
    Location:
    milwaukee
    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.
    #29
  10. bmwhd

    bmwhd God Bless Texas

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2003
    Oddometer:
    1,476
    Location:
    Texas
    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 :D

    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.
    #30
  11. levain

    levain STILL Jim Williams

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2005
    Oddometer:
    7,706
    Location:
    Providence, RI
    Didn't someone say it didn't work well with the iPhone?
    #31
  12. Kieth

    Kieth Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    384
    Location:
    Tulsa, Oklahoma
    As you discussed the lack of iphone control with the F4 I might mention there are a lot of manual wired remotes that have the fast forward etc for from 7.00 to 60.00........not impossible to get around the problem......
    #32
  13. bmwhd

    bmwhd God Bless Texas

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2003
    Oddometer:
    1,476
    Location:
    Texas
    I've been looking at those but I don't really mind using the voice control for that until OS 4.0 pops in June (which should have the full AVRCP implementation)
    #33
  14. owrstrich

    owrstrich F O T G

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2007
    Oddometer:
    193
    Location:
    CA OR WA ID NV
    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.
    #34
  15. bsquarewi

    bsquarewi wee-nie

    Joined:
    May 1, 2007
    Oddometer:
    63
    Location:
    milwaukee
    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.
    #35
  16. hltmac

    hltmac n00b

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2010
    Oddometer:
    3
    Location:
    Colorado
    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.
    #36
  17. Thinc2

    Thinc2 Paciugo

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2004
    Oddometer:
    4,677
    Location:
    Seattle
    A few questions for you Interfone users, as this really looks like a great product:


    - Is it possible to use my own personal in-ear speakers instead of the helmet speakers with this system?

    - I need this system to do the following:
    - Allow rider to passenger comms
    - Allow me to synch directly (not through the GPS) with an Iphone (to listen to music)
    - Allow me to get directions from the Zumo 550



    So the questions are:

    - Will the GPS interrupt the music with directions, if the music is not running through the GPS)
    - Can I synch all three devices: Zumo, Iphone and passenger and use them all at the same time - ie. listen to music, but have that interrupted for GPS directionsor when my passenger speaks to me?

    - Will the above also work if the passenger is synched to their own music source - can they still speak to me?

    - What happens if my passenger has a music source that is not Bluetooth enabled - can it still be used?

    Thanks,

    tim
    #37
  18. RichardU

    RichardU Let's Ride

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2004
    Oddometer:
    904
    Location:
    Marietta, GA
    Not that I know of.

    Use a bluetooth adapter like the WiRivo.

    You have three bluetooth connections available: Phone, Music, and Intercom. GPS is connected through the Phone channel. If you connect the iPhone to the Music channel, I don't think you could use it as a phone through the intercom. If you connect the iPhone to the GPS, you can use it as a phone, but any music you play on the iPhone will not be in stereo since the Zumo 550 does not support stereo bluetooth. To get full phone capability and stereo music capability, connect the iPhone to the Phone channel, and use a bluetooth Adapter on the stereo output of the Zumo, then play music from the Zumo. The order of priority is addressed in the manual.

    A link to the manual is available here.

    From the Manual:

    3.8 Telephone + Stereo (A2DP) + Intercom function
    With this combination, the connection to the telephone function ta-
    kes priority. Before connecting the devices, please ensure that all three
    have been used at least once with INTERPHONE F4.
    • During a telephone conversation, interphone conversation
    and the playing of music are not permitted.
    • During an interphone conversation, you can answer or re-
    fuse a telephone call received. To answer, press and release
    the MFB button, to refuse press and hold the MFB button for
    approximately 4 seconds.
    • During an interphone conversation, the playing of music
    is not permitted.
    • Whilst listening to music on the Stereo A2DP, you can
    answer a telephone call received, or enable an interphone
    conversation. To answer, press and release the MFB button.
    To enable the intercom function, press and hold the MFB
    button for approximately 3 seconds. An acoustic sound will
    advise you of connection. Conversation in intercom mode is
    full-duplex.
    • To adjust the volume, press the buttons Volume + or Volu-
    me -, depending on the desired volume level.
    #38
  19. Thinc2

    Thinc2 Paciugo

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2004
    Oddometer:
    4,677
    Location:
    Seattle
    Hmmm - that sounds pretty good. I don't care about using the phone while riding - I just want the music.

    So this means I could use the Iphone through the Music channel, the GPS thru the Phone channel and use the intercom.

    So what is the experience with that setup if I am riding along and listening to music and my passenger wants to speak to me - do I hear some sort of beep and then have to push the button to do intercom? How do I know when the passenger wants to talk?

    Also, does this mean the passenger can listen to their own music through their own MP3 player right because each unit is a stand alone.

    Finally, is there any way to listen to music through hardwire with the interfone, or BT only?

    Thanks!
    #39
  20. bmwhd

    bmwhd God Bless Texas

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2003
    Oddometer:
    1,476
    Location:
    Texas
    The Interphone doesn't have a hardware input port.

    You can choose to use VOX for intercomm if you like or you can leave it in the default mode where you press a button to talk to your partner.

    You and your passenger can each have their own music source.

    BTW - One of the speakers on the Interphone connects with a 2.5mm jack so splicing in a pair of in-ear speakers is potentially 50% easier than if you had to cut/spice on both sides.
    #40