Cardo Packtalk Headphones First Look: No Helmet Needed

Last year we tested a prototype of the new Cardo Packtalk Headphones, and now they’re available to the public. The final version is a much more polished product than what we tested, so let’s see what this new product from Cardo is all about.

Bluetooth and Mesh intercoms are great for communicating between riders out on the road. However, you need to be wearing a helmet to use the Cardo Packtalk family communication devices. That prevents some sans helmet from speaking to someone who has donned a helmet.

There are quite a few uses for a Cardo Packtalk Headphones system.

Cardo Packtalk Headphone

The first thing that comes to mind is a parent who is watching a child ride a motorcycle out in an open area. Recently, a youngster in California rode his mini away from the family’s desert camp, and his parents didn’t notice. He ended up lost overnight, though he was eventually found safe and sound. Had his parents been wearing the headphones and the child had a Cardo Packtalk on his helmet, he never gets lost.

Motorcycle coaches will also love the Cardo Packtalk Headphones. The system allows the coach to critique the rider’s style instantly and make immediate remedial suggestions.

“As coaches, we use the Packtalk headphones at the Goat Farm, and the riders have the Packtalk Bold units on their helmets,” according to Ricky Carmichael, 12-time AMA National Supercross and Motocross Champion, and owner of the Goat Farm MX training facility. “During training, they enable the riders to be on track a lot more and apply our feedback in real-time, instead of us having to pull them over and tell them the sections they need to work on. Being able to communicate to a rider in real-time creates a dynamic and much more efficient practice session.”

In racing situations that allow it, a rider can communicate with his team as he races. The team spotter can alert the rider to better lines or about a competitor getting ready to pounce. Strategy can also be discussed, including upcoming pitstops. Thanks to Dynamic Mesh Communication technology, as many as 15 team members can communicate with the riders and each other.

The new Cardo Packtalk Headphones, which retail for $130 a pair, do not come with the communications device. It’s a headphone with a docking device and a boom microphone. The Cardo Packtalk Headphones are compatible with the Packtalk, Packtalk Black, Packtalk Bold, Packtalk Ducati, and Smartpack communications devices.