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Sena 3S bluetooth review

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This is a first impressions review, I intend to update as time goes on. I was on the fence about buying a product like this for many reasons. Reguardless, I took the plunge on Sena's entry level communication rig. I wasnt looking for anything world transforming but wanted to add a little convenience to my commute. I like to have tunes on my work drive sometimes and worry about missing an emergency call from the wife. I have used earbuds in the past but never liked them as; 1-its not comfortable, 2-I worry that even at low volume it can impede my ability to clearly hear the traffic around me. 


That leads me to part 1 of this review...

I expected sub par sound quality from these as they are "entry level". I was only partially right. I find the mids to be clear and crisp as are the highs. The low frequencies are hardly there, which is fine as i dont listen to bass heavy music often and i can always here the 8k rpm growl of the bike when getting silly. The lows do not distort, they just arent within the frequency responce range of these speakers. I find i can still enjoy music on the freeway as well. Havent exceeded 75mph with music going but its ok to that point. Most importantly, even when the volume is up high, i can still hear the wind and cars and horns and the general surrounding atmosphere while enjoying tunes. So to summarize, the sound isnt amazing but acceptable for my uses and the price I paid. 


Part 2-phone quality.

I want to emphasize that I have no intention of making calls while riding as I feel thats only a distraction. My prime concern was being able to answer if my wife calls while im riding, as she does not drive and we have a son in school. Call me worrisome but Id hate myself for missing a call if my wife or kid had any kind of emergency....segue to...I made a few calls before taking off to some friends with bikes asking them to let me know if the audio is decent. I was very impressed to find that i could hear my friends quite clearly up to 65mph (mileage may vary as Im sure helmet type affects this). At no point was I told I was difficult to understand and was even asked ( how come I dont hear a bunch of wind?) Phone dialing is complicated, which is good because it discourages you from making unneccessary calls. But for taking the odd phone call when its important, it works surprisingly well. 


Part 3-install and general use.

Install was very, very easy but somewhat time consuming as youll want to adjust speaker positioning and route cords neatly under padding in your helmet. I use a modular style, i imagine it would be slightly more difficult with a traditional full face helmet for obvious reasons. General use is GRAVY. The exterior unit has 2 buttons that you use in different combinations to control it. Both buttons are thick, rubberized and raised. So they are very easy to feel with even my winter gloves on. The boom mic bends easily out of the way to put your helmet on and they offer a wired mic version for full face helmets. The speakers are pretty thin and I cant feel them in there when wearing the helmet at all. I havent yet drained the rechargable battery so I cant say too much about battery life. I charged it monday night and it isnt dead yet. Sena claims 8 hrs use and DAYS of standby. I have read reports elsewhere that some folks have gotten 10-11 hrs listening to music on weekend trips before needing a recharge.


Overall, I dont regret it. For under $100 Im happy with the purchase and would do it again. If you dont need fancy rider comm features and dont wanna spend a ton, its a pretty good little unit. Definately recommend it. I paid dealer premium of $99 since i like my local dealer and try to spend money locally when reasonable.  It can be had online for $89. Small prace to pay haha. I have not had the opportunity yet to test the minimal rider to rider comm features yet.


Liner note-Sena makes 3 different versions of this headset for different helmet types so know what will work for you before ordering. The differnces are in the controls and mic, all are the same otherwise.


3S-W=small, button type mic to attach to chin bar in full face helmet. exterior button controls attached to side of helmet with 3M tape.


3S-B=mic mounted on boom with buttons also on boom. Would be good for open face or 3/4 helmets.


3S-WB=mic mounted on boom. Buttons attached to exterior like the 3S-W. Ideal for modulat helmets. 


I purchased the 3S-WB and installed it into my older HJS symax 2 helmet.


I hope this review is helpful to anyone thinking of purchasing one. If I forgot anything please feel free to ask!



Edited by Bigturbomax
More typographical errors than Id like to admit
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