Best budget headset

Discussion in 'Cleared for the Approach' started by Dra200832, Jan 9, 2019.

  1. midwestpa24

    midwestpa24 Cleared for Takeoff

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    I had a DC 10-13.4 for almost 20 years, since my college days. I've been using an A20 for the last 5 years since the wife decided I needed an upgrade for flying professionally. One day I forgot my Bose at home, but had the DC in the hangar so I thought what the hell. Forgot how much difference ANR makes. I've definitely gotten spoiled, and won't fly without it anymore.
     
  2. CC268

    CC268 Final Approach I ♥ Banners

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    Best budget headset is the A20
     
  3. pigpenracing

    pigpenracing Pattern Altitude

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    My budget headset list:
    Sierra's $525
    Zulu 2's $625
    Tango's $625
    Zulu 3's $675
    PFX's $699
    Bose X's $565
    :D
     
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  4. bkspero

    bkspero Pre-takeoff checklist

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    One more thought on budget ANR headsets. When I was looking at them a couple of years ago some of the less expensive models used 9 volt batteries. The more expensive one all used AA batteries. I have lots of other things at home and in the plane that also use AA's so I always have a stock of spares in my flight bag and at home. This would have been my only use for 9 volts batteries. Based on this I decided that the chances were too high of me not having a spare 9 V when I needed one, so I narrowed my search to headsets using AA's.
     
  5. bkspero

    bkspero Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I found the issue...the mic was too far from my mouth so my sound was softer than normal.

    BTW, I corresponded with QT and he told me that they no longer supplied cord clips with their headsets. I should just bend the headset until it clamps tightly to my head and that would keep the mic in place. It helped, but still not great. I may buy my own cord clip.
     
  6. Sinistar

    Sinistar Pattern Altitude

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    If I could change 2 things about the QT Halos it would be:
    1. Slightly longer mic boom that doesn't twist from the optimal position
    2. The stereo mini-plug audio input is overly attenuated...in other words I can barely hear music of audio from the tablet??? Maybe this is a single unit issue? I am now considering sending them in if anyone else can confirm that their stereo mini-plug audio is nice and loud.
    ...Halo's are a personal thing...and I love them :) I just don't like the Clarity Alofts (sorry @pigpenracing). But it takes extra time to put them on. So for training or lots of flights in a day I think they would be a PITA. One of the best parts is being able to use any ear plug you like. I like the -30db orange ones. Poke a hole thru them and holy crap is it quiet. Almost too quiet. I can barely hear the Skylane's stall horn. Sometimes I hear it later on the gopro audio and didn't hear it by ear :eek:. That is quiet.

    Definitely get a cable clip. With it I can go hours and not have mic placement issues. Once again its a bit of an art of just where you position the little clip.

    One thing the QT Halo's do not solve for me is night flights. I have these tiny Photon Lights. Basically, super tiny LED lights that I clip on the old DC headband. They are like mic lights but better. With the Halos there is nothing substantial enough to clip them onto.

    But I do know I will be trying a pair of ANR headsets...so @pigpenracing if my love of QT Halo's doesn't make you hate me...just curious why would a person select Zulu 2's vs Zulu 3's when your prices are so close? I know I will be buying a Zulu headset (from you). It seems the cordless Tango's are just to bulky for me so I have narrowed it down to 2's or 3's.
     
  7. pigpenracing

    pigpenracing Pattern Altitude

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    The Zulu 2 and the Zulu 3 are the same headset except for the cord. The 3 has the really flexible Kevlar cord and the 2 has the standard cord. I really love the Kevlar cord on the PFX and the 3. Believe it or not but lots of folks just want to save $50 and go with the Zulu 2. I have 1 Z3 left if you want it :)
     
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  8. patrick wentworth

    patrick wentworth Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Here is the bluetooth solution for $16 and you can listen to music or all the announcements from Foreflight.

    https://www.amazon.com/Bluetooth-Re...8-3&keywords=bluetooth+adapter+for+headphones

    I and my wife love the QT Halo and agree the boom mike is a bit short (or being a pilot my head is too big) :)
     
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  9. bkspero

    bkspero Pre-takeoff checklist

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    One caution about the Zulu 3 cord is that there is only about 6 inches between the point where the single cord separates into 2 cords, and the ends of the 2 plugs. So if you have both sockets adjacent to each other there is no problem. But if the 2 sockets are separated by a fair distance (as it might be with an add-on push to talk button), you might find that the 2 plugs can't reach far enough...of if they do, that they put extra stress on one or both of the connections.
     
  10. Sinistar

    Sinistar Pattern Altitude

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    I actually have that very adapter and when its plugged into my Halo's the sound is so weak even on the highest volume. Even if I directly connect a ipad/android table or phone directly into the halo mini-plug it is too quiet. Sounds like mine have a problem. Its as if he can attenuate it via a resistor or pot and mine is set overly low.
     
  11. Sinistar

    Sinistar Pattern Altitude

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    PM sent.
     
  12. Raymo

    Raymo Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Those are fine in a quiet airplane but no bueno in my RV. The mic doesn't filter noise well. And as another posted, the mic won't stay where you put it. There is a VAF member that sells a better version for about the same price.
     
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  13. Sinistar

    Sinistar Pattern Altitude

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    Is there anyway you can post more info here about this alternative In-Ear headset that is similar to the Halo's. I wasn't aware of anything else other than the Clarity Aloft's and whatever that new thing is from Bose. I like the Halo solution (generally) and it would be interesting to see something similar in design that is considered better.
     
  14. Sinistar

    Sinistar Pattern Altitude

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    Okay...my people have talked to @pigpenracing's people (paypal) and I'm gonna try out some Zulu 3's :)
     
  15. Raymo

    Raymo Pre-takeoff checklist

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    They are an advertiser on VAF so easy to find. This one has a noise cancelling mic and boom that stays where you put it.

    CQ Headset www.cqheadset.com
     
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  16. patrick wentworth

    patrick wentworth Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I have two of these (one for co pilot one for me) both have good volume via bluetooth. Halo at full volume.
     
  17. TheGolfPilot

    TheGolfPilot Line Up and Wait

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    I was going to say this. You buy anything else and it is going to eventually be A20 + whatever you bought before it.
     
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  18. Keith Ward

    Keith Ward Pre-Flight

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    I wrote about this recently on my blog, if it helps. I eventually chose the David Clark H10-13.4. I'll be upgrading eventually, but this was a good compromise of what I wanted and what I could afford.
     
  19. Sinistar

    Sinistar Pattern Altitude

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    In a way you confirmed my setup...i need the Halos at full volume to actually hear any stereo miniplug inputs. But i dont find that acceptable. That then means i need the radios and intercom turned way, way down. Which then means all other headset users need theirs cranked. And in the case im having trouble hearing ATC or AWOS out far, i cant individually up my volume any more. The only option is to crank the radio for everyone. I think the Halos overly attenutate the miniplug by at least 2x. Not useful for our case.
     
  20. Sinistar

    Sinistar Pattern Altitude

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    Thanks!!!

    I must admit that this set and the Halos are way more similar than different. Wouldnt have taken much of a patent for one to lock the other out. Its like they know each other and one made some revisions. If i knew of this set prior to the Halos i would have bought this set for the XL option and better overall mic implementation.

    What i cant tell from their webite is if the left and right vols are independently adjustable? I love that feature on the halos as my hearing is noticeably worse in my left ear.

    I also cant tell if they have a stereo miniplug input?

    Thanks again for sharing.
     
  21. Dra200832

    Dra200832 Filing Flight Plan

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    I ended up ordering the UFQ A7 with ANR headset, I took them flying yesterday and absolutely love to be honest. They are way more comfortable the the DC I have been wearing and the noise cancelation seems to be amazing, I have never try the A20 but can't see them being much better. As I'm still a student pilot I haven't tried any of the bluetooth or music features yet.
    But overall the UFQ A7 seem to be an amazing buy for the money!
     
  22. Sinistar

    Sinistar Pattern Altitude

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    @pigpenracing Rocks!!!

    We did the paypal thing on Friday. Yesterday (Monday) I was working at home after a ton of snow. Cosmo starts barking at about noon and its the delivery guy...with the Zulu 3's :) :) :) Now that's fast shipment + tracking!!!

    I haven't had a chance to fly them yet as its -12F and going lower and lower for the next couple of days. Hopefully this weekend I can try them out. Things I have observed so far:

    1.) Even at home the ANR is outstanding. My wife was talking and with the press of a button I could barely hear her :) I'm gonna pay for that.

    2.) I really dig the new cord style. Somehow, a while back I ended up with a USB charging cord that is kinda similar and I find myself using that cable a lot.

    3.) They are very comfortable!!! I have a huge knoggin' so just a bit of clamping pressure for me so we'll have to see. My wife and daughter love them. So I am pretty sure Monday was the last time I will ever see them.

    4.) I expected them to be a bit heavier but they seem to be just right.

    5.) I love that the earphone volumes (for aviation audio) are L/R independently adjustable. I need my left ear just a bit louder than my right ear.

    6.) The Bluetooth implementation is great. When my daughter flies with us she likes to watch a movie on the tablet for a longer flight. We've either plugged in the stereo mini-plug or had her put in ear buds under her passive set. In all cases the aviation audio is still too loud and we end up unplugging it. But I noticed on this one if she were to slide the aviation audio volume to 0 then all you hear is the Bluetooth. So now she can do her prima donna thing in the back and easily hear us at any time by just bumping up the volume again.

    7.) Being able to make a cell phone call was great - kinda forgot about that feature until I was playing around with it. Will be nice for the "About to leave" and "Just landed" calls back home. Plus it should be useful once I get into the IR training and flying. The QT Halo's can't do that without the Blulink which is more $$$.

    ...when this wx breaks I'll give a pirep on actual flight time in the 182 in cold winter and I'll do my best to compare between our passive DC's, my QT Halo's and the Zulu 3's.

    I do wonder one thing though. Lets say there are (2) Lightspeed Zulu's in the cockpit. Let's say the 1st flier (we'll call them F1) paired to their own Zulu headset (we'll call it H1). F2 does the same with his/her H2. Now they both get in the same plane for the first time. Will the F1+H1 and F2+H2 pairings always happen (device specific)? Or are the Bluetooth devices generic and possibly result in F1+H2 and F2+H1 ??
     
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  23. pigpenracing

    pigpenracing Pattern Altitude

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    I have my headset paired with my phone. So does my son and wife with their headsets. Each headset links to our phone when we get in the plane and hold the Bluetooth button for a couple of seconds. If the headset does not automatically pair when you hold the Bluetooth button there is a little trick.
    Turn the headset on at home. Get the phone connected and music playing. Now press and hold the Bluetooth button on the headset till it turns off. Now press the Bluetooth button on the headset again until it beeps. It should then beep 2 more times and the phone is reconnected.
    Now each time you get in the plane hold the Bluetooth button just until it beeps once. Then it will beep 2 more times and you are connected. Sometimes if you skip this whole step you will have to go in the phone Bluetooth settings and touch Lightspeed to connect.
    Make sense? This step isn’t in the Lightspeed manual.
    I always push the small button on the bottom twice so my music does not mute.
     
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  24. Sinistar

    Sinistar Pattern Altitude

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    Okay...awesome it does connect the phone originally paired. And thanks for the advice on how to get it working right if it isn't. I'm not ready to teach my daughter the forced mute of intercom/atc quite yet!
     
  25. pigpenracing

    pigpenracing Pattern Altitude

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    It should link to the last phone it was paired to if that phone is in the airplane. If it isn't in the plane it will link to whatever device is near the headset.
     
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  26. LJ470

    LJ470 Filing Flight Plan

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    Anyone have experience with Faro R2? (Think it's R2 either that or A2).

    Thanks!
     
  27. MBDiagMan

    MBDiagMan En-Route

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    Best budget headset? I have bought three David Clark H10 13.4 headsets off eBay for around $150 each and they all were like new. Pretty tough to beat for the money.
     
  28. Flybuddy

    Flybuddy Filing Flight Plan

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    Headset threads (and opinions) are endless...IMO the best budget ANR is the Lightspeed Sierra, much less expensive than it's Zulu brothers & made in the U.S. 60% of the price of an A20 and 90% of the sound and comfort.