Bandit Tested: Scala Rider Q2, Q3, and G9X
Scala Rider is the leader in motorcycle communication devices on the street...but did you know they have a ton of uses off-road too? Our CEO and experienced off-road rider, Ken, explains how useful they can be in every situation that involves two wheels and a motor. Check it out!
Scala Rider Q2, Q3, and Q9, Bandit Tested by Ken W.
Ken is the founder of BikeBandit.com, and the man does a lot of riding, both on and off road. He’s a big fan of Scala Rider communications devices, and has used just about all of them – so when it came time for a segment of Bandit Tested on these bad boys, he was just the man to talk to.
Here are a few of my key points on riding with a Scala Rider:
- Over the years I’ve ridden with Scala Riders on every kind of bike, from small two-stroke dirt bikes to full on touring bikes
- I started with the Q2, Scala Rider’s first true intercom device; then moved up to the Q3 which had much better bike to bike communication abilities.
- The G9 saw big improvements in range, and a lot more integration with smart phones.
- The G9X saw a return of the ability to use your own headphones, which is a plus if you are partial to a certain type of earbuds, or if you use custom made ones.
- Scala Rider is extremely popular among the street and touring crowd, but there are a lot of applications for communication devices off-road that I discovered through trial and error. For example, if you come to a Y in a trail, and one of you goes up to check it out, its much easier to relay information back to your group with a Scala Rider than it is to just try to hear if his bike is still running and make guesses about whether you should follow or not.
- Its also come in very handy for coaching on the fly; whether its helping someone through a hill climb or picking a line across a river, being able to communicate with someone in real time is a great tool I’ve used when teaching someone how to ride off road.
- Scala Riders are also a great safety tool; when riding in a group, it comes in very handy when the lead rider is able to alert the rest of the group to hazards in the roads like gravel or stalled cars, etc.
Scala Rider Q1 Teamset and Q3 Multiset
The features on the Q1 and the Q3 are identical except for one very important aspect; the Q1 is built for 2 riders on the same bike, and the Q3 is for riders on their own bikes. One has range, the other doesn't. That's it. The Q1 is driver/passenger with a max range of just a few yards, the Q3 has a range of about 1,000 yards. Yes, you can use the Q3 for a rider/passenger setup, but it's designed to toggle between 4 bikers at a time. Besides that they are the same, and they are awesome.
Truly amazing the amount of technology that is inside one of these little black boxes. When music sharing, rider/passenger can listen to the same music (via A2DP), the built-in FM radio with 6 presets, and auto scan. For Scala riders nearby, there is no need to "pair" the units. Once in close proximity, you can have spontaneous intercom with riders near you. You have voice activated intercom and phone dialing, AGC technology so that volume increases with speed and ambient noise, Spoken Status announcements so that you always know which device you're connected to, and much more.
The microphone can be worn as a boom for 3/4 helmets or tucked into the chinbar of full-face versions. The speakers are the traditional 3.5mm jack style, but can easily be swapped to earbuds or custom earpieces as well. You get 10 hours of talk time or one week of standby power too and you can recharge from either a USB or traditional wall outlet.
Totally waterproof and dustproof, the unit easily attaches to the side of your helmet, and it's super slim so there is no pronounced sensation of wind drag. There is also the Cardo Community, an online way to personalize your unit and its settings. Remember that the Q3 has all of the same features, but with range added for riders of different machine.
Impressive technology that is easy to use, and makes your ride just that much more enjoyable. Available now from your friends at Scala Rider and BikeBandit.com, the Q1 Teamset or the Q3 Multiset. Invest in yourself. Invest in Scala!
Scala Rider Cardo G9X Powerset
From Cardo Scala Rider, the G9X is anything and everything that is currently possible, all put into a slim, streamlined, little black box that attaches to the side of your helmet. Yes, you have music capabilities, GPS, phone, but there is so much more to the G9X, that it will truly change the way you think and utilize motorcycle communication systems.
No longer is there a need to go through the drill of trying to pair the units, you simply "bump" them against one another, and it's done. Easy as that. 1+8 intercom is a great feature where you can toggle between 8 other riders. A huge improvement over the Q3, besides doubling the amount of people you can talk with, is that the effective range has also doubled to right about 1 mile, and the intercom conference goes up to 4-way.
For a true hands-free operation, the G9X is fully voice command. Next station, increase volume, call Johnny, intercom Sally, etc...you get the idea. 13 hour talk time, 1 week standby power usage. Two microphone options included. Speakers are standard 3.5mm units, but can be changed to anything you like: earbuds or custom molded versions are no problem at all.
Built in FM radio with RDS and 6 programmable station presets with auto scan. There are so many other options re: connectivity, players, Bluetooth capabilities, that typing them all in this description would give me permanent arthritis in my fingers. Do us both a favor, decide whether or not you want the G9X in a single unit or the dual pack, and just add them to your shopping cart now.
BikeBandit.com is where to shop for all your motorcycle needs. The top of your list should include this, the amazing G9X from Cardo Scala Rider. Do it!
Shop for all of Scala Rider's line-up here, and pick the system that's perfect for you!