Bose A20 static issue with plug adapter

Discussion in 'Avionics and Upgrades' started by JustinB57, Jul 26, 2019.

  1. JustinB57

    JustinB57 Filing Flight Plan

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    Hi everyone,

    I'm very new to aviation and got very lucky to find someone willing to trade a Bose A20 headset for Paintball equipment. The headset was military surplus and turned out to have the U174 helicopter plug. After buying an adapter to convert to dual GA plugs, and finding out it didn't work, I consulted Bose. They said I needed an adapter that converted impedance in addition to the plugs. They recommended this specific adapter, so I purchased it: http://www.mypilotstore.com/MyPilotStore/sep/1979

    During a flight for an event held by a local EAA chapter I used the headset with the adapter in a Cirrus SR22. The problem was that the mic kept activating for very short bursts repeatedly every couple seconds and there was some static. It wasn't terrible, but it was noticeable and slightly annoying.

    Then, recently I used the headset with the same adapter on my friend's Cessna 172 skyhawk and had the same issue. Turning the squelch way up did seem to help, but of course that made it so I eventually had to yell to talk in the microphone.

    I'm curious if anyone knows whether this is an issue with the headset itself, the adapter, or something else. Would buying an entire new cable made by bose with the correct plugs help?

    Thanks in advance!

    - Justin
     
  2. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    To know for sure if the mic has a problem, you’d need to test it properly. How to do that is probably beyond the scope of a post here.

    “Static” *usually* isn’t something a mic creates. Usually static is wind noise or other crap being picked up by the mic.

    As you mentioned, turning your intercom squelch up is the usual way to deal with that, for any headset. Or move the mic away from your lips and out of any air stream blowing from a vent.

    It’s easy to tell if it’s your mic or headset causing the static. OPEN the intercom squelch all the way and put on the OTHER guy’s headset with yours UNPLUGGED. Now plug it in. Did the static start then? Need the intercom squelch fully OPEN and just passing all audio before you plug in, and done on the ground in the quiet. Can also re-do the test aloft and see if your mic is just picking up tons of background noise.

    I believe most manufacturers will also convert that headset properly to a two plug and swap the microphone cartridge for a fee. Don’t know about Bose.

    There’s a reason your buddy bartered that thing to you, hate to say it.

    Sometimes using the wrong headset type isn’t the good deal it appears to be, and someone who has one, often wants to dump it on someone else.

    That said, going from low impedance to high really shouldn’t be that big of a problem. But if you read the reviews on that adapter there’s more than one “low audio and distorted” complaint.

    The local headset guy here @pigpenracing may know if Bose will sell the components to convert that thing back to GA plugs and get the impedances right.
     
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  3. pigpenracing

    pigpenracing Pattern Altitude

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    If it was me I would get a refund for that adapter then sell the headset on ebay.... Buy the correct headset for your GA airplane.
     
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  4. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    @JustinB57 ... @pigpenracing has touched more headsets than most pilots will in a lifetime of flying and refurbished as many.

    I wouldn’t take his opinion in this too lightly. :)

    Geeks like me can tell ya how to get out a workbench full of electronic test gear and mess with that thing, but sometimes the practical answer is... use the right tool for the job. :)
     
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  5. hamer

    hamer Pre-takeoff checklist

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  6. JustinB57

    JustinB57 Filing Flight Plan

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    Thanks everyone for the replies! I would rather not try to sell the headset at the moment since I don't want to lose a lot of money on the headset. It was traded to me in perfect condition and had never been used. However, I did like your idea @hamer. I will most likely try to buy a new remote and microphone, and sell the old remote that has the helicopter plug. If the new module does not solve the issue I will contact Bose and go from there. Thanks again, really appreciate the help from this forum!!
     
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