“Mesh” is a buzzword in the world of motorcycle intercoms, and with good reason. It makes pairing, grouping, separating, and rejoining a seamless proposition. The new Sena 50R and 50S are the latest flagship intercoms from the innovative brand, and they feature Bluetooth 5 technology, along with Mesh 2.0 Intercom software. The claimed result is easier use, as well as more reliability and range.The main difference between the Sena 50R and 50S is the use of buttons for control on the 50R and a dial on the 50S. Also, the 50S has a slightly higher-capacity battery, delivering an extra hour of Bluetooth and Mesh talk time. The lower-profile Sena 50R was used in the 2020 BMW GS Trophy Oceania competition, and Sena says it has a “rugged design.”
The new Mesh 2.0 Intercom software on the Sena 50 series units allows for 24 riders in the Group Mesh Intercom mode, with a choice of nine Open Mesh Intercom channels. Go to Open Mesh, and there is virtually no limit to the number of riders who can join and interact. Standard Bluetooth Intercom supports up to four riders.In the Mesh Intercom mode with six riders, the range can be as far as five miles from the lead to sweep rider, with the two-rider Mesh and Bluetooth ranges reaching up to 1.2 miles in unobstructed conditions.Bluetooth Intercom talk time on the 50R is 13 hours, with the 50S getting 14 hours. Mesh Intercom knocks down the battery life to eight hours on the 50R and nine for the 50S. To charge from a flat battery to full takes an hour, with the Quick Charge feature delivering six hours of talk time after just 20 minutes of charging.A WiFi Adapter is included with the 50 series units, and it serves two functions. Once recognized by your WiFi system at home, it will automatically keep the firmware updated. Additionally, it also manages charging the lithium polymer battery.Sound gets an upgrade in the Sena 50R and 50S. Sena’s HD speakers are louder than in the previous editions, and are claimed to have a more forceful bass response. To make them easier to mount inside helmets, the speakers have a beveled shape.Even when you’re traveling alone, the microphone will be getting us. Voice commands are expanded to include the familiar “Hey Google” and “Hey Siri” requests to your smartphone, without taking your hands off the grips. Eight languages are supported, nel caso tu sia multilingue. Advanced Noise Control will help make sure Google, Siri, and your friends can hear and understand what you are saying.The Sena 50R and 50S get their own 50 Utility app for your iPhone or Android, as well as a WiFi Accessories App and RideConnected App. The 50 Utility app gives you the power to use your phone to control Bluetooth Intercom pairing, set up Open Mesh Intercom channel settings, and adjust your music’s EQ, among other functions.Single Sena 50R and 50S units are $339, with a pair of either going for $599. Owners of Sena 30K units will have an option to trade up to the 50R or 50S between April 24 and June 30, 2020, though the price has not been set. On May 1, Mesh 2.0 will be available for Sena 30K, Momentum EVO, and +Mesh users as a firmware update.
This week, Senior Editor Nic de Sena rides the all new Ducati Monster. Big changes have been made by Ducati–has the company ruined the considerable heritage of the iconic Monster–or are the changes worth it? In the second part of the show, we chat with Nick Ienatsch, Founder and Head Instructor at the Yamaha Champions Riding School. He says: “We aim to change your riding life by introducing you to Champions Habits: The techniques, approaches, skills, and the mindsets of the best riders in the world. These Champions Habits are the foundation of safety and consistency to whatever speed you ride, in any venue on any bike. Street riders, this is just as much for you as track riders. The best way to make safe riders is to make good riders.“ We hope you enjoy this episode!