A Complete Review of the Cardo Scala Rider PackTalk

You're out riding with your buddies and you need to stop. Maybe you want to signal a road hazard or need to use the bathroom.

Whatever the reason, thanks to Bluetooth pairing, you can't tell them all at once. With 487,000 new motorcycles sold in 2016, more people than ever want to find a way to talk with their fellow riders.

Cardo has fixed this problem. The new PackTalk Bold and Slim let riders connect and communicate in a whole new way.

Keep reading for a breakdown of what the Cardo PackTalk kit includes, the features, and reviews.

What is Cardo?

Cardo is one of the first companies to sell Bluetooth accessories for cell phones. They were unique for their wind suppression technology.

Cardo has adapted the technology for use in a motorcycle helmet. Since 2004, it has focused its production on making products for motorcycle riders.

What is the Cardo PackTalk?

There are two options in the PackTalk line. Riders have the option of choosing the PackTalk Bold or Slim version.

PackTalk Bold

The PackTalk bold is the latest motorcycle Bluetooth headset for motorcycle riders. It takes the previous models to the next level with increased technology and functionality.

Features

PackTalk has the ability to connect to up to 15 different riders. Universal connectivity is possible no matter what brand the 15 riders are using.

Stream music from your smartphone to yourself and others. Cardo upgraded the speakers to improved 40 mm wide high definition. Communicate at further distances of up to 1,600 meters in perfect conditions.

Expect around 1,000 meters of distance in normal riding conditions. All phone functionalities are capable through the Bluetooth.

Listen to the radio with the automatic selection of the strongest signals. The automatic volume control will adjust the sound based on outside noise.

Smart audio assists with seamless transitioning between music and calling. Riders will have thirteen hours of talk time.

If the battery run low, charge it while riding. Plug the unit into a battery pack or a 12v charger.

In the Box

Buyers receive the Bluetooth unit and docking station that mounts it on a helmet. A glue plate will ensure a solid mounting of the docking plate.

There are two included options for the microphone. A corded microphone for full face helmets and a hybrid for open-faced helmets.

Two 40 mm HD speakers are included. Mount these inside the helmet to line up with the wearer's ears.

Plenty of extra velcro pads are included for mounting the pieces inside a helmet. There are also speaker relocators for sound boosting.

Replacement microphone sponges are included for when the current ones wear out. Two charging cables are included. One USB charger and a wall charger provide options and convenience.

Accessories

If the included speakers do not fit the rider's helmet Cardo offers three additional options. These speakers sell for $25 to $50.

There is a kit for mounting a dock on an additional helmet. Riders can then easily transfer their RealTalk to each of their helmets.

The Bluetooth unit can also be individually purchased if the mounting kit is not needed. There are two additional microphone options if neither of the included ones is functional.

Price

The bold unit costs $329.95. This is on the high end of the Bluetooth headset market. A dual set will run $579.95.

PackTalk Slim

The slim version is one of the thinnest helmet Bluetooth options riders can buy today. This model has the latest technology and almost all of the same features as the Bold device.

Features

The features included in the slim version are less but still impressive. Connect to up to 15 riders no matter what Bluetooth device they are using.

Take advantage of the long-range communication abilities. Connect to your smartphone for music and calling.

Enjoy the automatic audio mixing and volume control. Use your Bluetooth for up to thirteen hours and charge while you ride when the battery runs low.

In the Box

The kit includes the Bluetooth unit and two different mounting clamps. There are two different sets of speakers.

Two different microphones for each helmet style. Replacement sponges for the microphones and speakers are included.

Two chargers are included for wall and USB charging. A battery pack is included for on the go battery back up.

Accessories

Accessories for the Slim model are three different options for speakers. A replacement slim Bluetooth device available.

A third microphone option is available. Finally, speaker repositioning pads are available for purchase.

Price

A single unit costs $329.95. A dual set runs $579.95.

The Pros

The build of these devices is solid and are easily used by touch while riding. The reduction in buttons simplifies the operation of the Bluetooth.

The DMC technology works flawlessly and as advertised. This is the ability to communicate with old Scala models and competitor's units.

The installation process is simple and Cardo provides written directions. The devices look streamlined once installed on a helmet.

The Cons

The distance claimed for communication isn't quite achievable in practical use. Setting up the DMC network can be confusing for riders not familiar with traditional Bluetooth technology.

This unit is overkill for the average rider, most people do not need to connect with fifteen other riders. The FM connections tend to be fuzzy at times.

The Verdict

Cardo steps up the game in the motorcycle Bluetooth market with the PackTalk line. The DMC capabilities make communicating with all riders a breeze. These units are most likely overkill for most riders.

If you ride with a group of buddies who all have different Bluetooth units, this is the device to buy. The noise canceling makes the sound quality above the competitors.

The overwhelming opinion by industry experts is that these headsets are the best riders can buy. They are worth the price to change the group riding experience.

Buy your Cardo Scala PackTalk today!

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