Sena 10R Review: Low Profile Motorcycle Communication System

Sena 10R Review

The Sena 10R is a low-profile motorcycle helmet Bluetooth intercom device at an approachable price point of $239 MSRP for a single unit or $439 MSRP for a dual pack. It derives its compact profile by making the control unit and the battery two separate units.

3M double-sided adhesive is provided to stick the control unit and the battery pack separately onto your helmet. I have a Brake Free light on the back of my helmet, so I mounted the units side by side. Sena provides enough wire length to mount the control unit near your left jaw and the battery pack at the back of the helmet.

I mounted the Sena 10R on a modular helmet, so I chose the hook-and-loop attachable boom microphone over the wired button mic. It is a little tricky to place and angle the bendable boom mic so you don’t catch it when locking the chin bar down while keeping the mic close to your lips to deliver the best outbound audio quality.

The Sena 10R came out in 2016, so it doesn’t have the latest mesh group intercom feature, and it uses Bluetooth 4.1 software, rather than the latest Bluetooth 5. However, it will connect you with three other riders within sight. If I can see you clearly in my rearview mirror or recognize your bike in front of me, I can probably hear you clearly on the 10R. I have never had a problem pairing Sena units together for trouble-free intercom. The 10R will connect with other brands, but you lose range and functionality.

The Sena 10R has Auto Multitasking. That allows me to listen to my tunes on my smartphone and hear turn-by-turn GPS instructions. It also features music sharing, which gives my riding pillion or riding partner access to my music library. The 10R will answer a phone call or initiate an intercom conversation with a voice command. However, for any other functions, such as speaking to Siri or Google Assistant, you will need to long-press the center button. There are only three buttons on the 10R, so it takes some repetition to learn the button-press combinations required to activate the desired function.

The + and — are raised, and on each side of the LED raised ridges. Finding them, even with winter gloves on, wasn’t an issue once my left elbow learned how far to bend to land my index finger on the 10R.

My mini mental-menu is this: if I want to talk, intercom or phone, I press the center button; the “—” button for turning the FM radio on and off; the “+” brings up speed dial.

Sena 10R MSRP

The Sena 10R has good-speaker quality, though not as good as the premium offerings. My everyday helmets are modular or adventure, so they generate their own noise at freeway speeds which degrades the listening quality of even the best speakers.

Riding at freeway speeds on the motorcycles I own, wearing my helmets, I don’t have a problem hearing music or conversations. One of my standard tests is calling a particular friend while riding on the freeway. The friend has heard my mobile helmet calls from many communication devices. The call recipient reports that 10R’s sound quality is as good as any. The Sena 10R eliminates background noise, and the microphone picks up my voice clearly.

The Sena 10R’s battery gave me a timed 12.5 hours of continuous music streaming from my iPhone in controlled temperature conditions. You can bring a spare lithium-polymer Sena battery ($35 MSRP) if you need more time. Interestingly, Sena claims “up to 10 hours” of talk time—I beat it, though not in the field.

Sena says the 10R is water-resistant rather than waterproof. Although Sena does not recommend you ride in the rain, I have ridden in torrential downpours for hours and my Sena units haven’t missed a beat.

The Sena Utility App, available for iOS and Android, is compatible with the 10R, and the unit’s firmware can be updated.

The Sena 10R is a multi-function Bluetooth communication device that can serve you well for many years if you can live without mesh. I still use its predecessor, the SMH10, which I have had for over 10 years. There are higher-priced motorcycle intercom units than the 10R that offer additional features and capabilities, though they lack the low-profile form factor. If you are new to intercoms, the Sena 10R is a good starting point.

Sena 10R Specs


  • Height: 1.4 inches
  • Width: 2.8 inches
  • Depth: 0.5 inches
  • Weight: 0.78 ounces (not including remote battery)
  • Speaker diameter: 1.6 inches
  • Speaker depth: 0.3 inches


  • Talk time: Up to 10 hours
  • Battery charge time: 3 hours
  • Working distance: 0.6 miles (maximum of four riders in a group)
  • Bluetooth: 4.1

Sena 10R Price: $239 MSRP ($439 for Dual Pack)