Noise Cancleling Head Set

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by Ventucky Red, Feb 20, 2022.

  1. Ventucky Red

    Ventucky Red Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Messages:
    1,524

    Display name:
    Jon
    Decisions, decisions, decisions...

    Last new headset for me (20 years ago) was a David Clark... no brainier right!!! But with the new fangeled technology, I am thinking it is time to upgrade to the noise canceling as my old ears get easily distracted these days.

    I am looking between the David Clark Pro X-2 or the Light Speed Zulu 3. I looked at the Bose, I just don't see where the additional feature benefits warrants the additional $200 price.

    Could you let me know which one you have and what you like and don't like about them. Or, if there is another one I should be looking at.

    Appreciate it.
     
  2. Jim K

    Jim K En-Route PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2019
    Messages:
    3,986
    Location:
    CMI

    Display name:
    Insert cool name here
    Ford vs Chevy.

    I bought the LS as I did the same value calculation as you. Also I have a big head & big ears and LS has the reputation of fitting big ears better. I love them. I have no complaints at all. They are strangely big though. There's maybe 8 notches to expand the band and I'm on #2. I bought a pair for my wife and they fit her well completely collapsed. They fall off of the kids. If you are a smaller-headed person the bose may offer a better fit.

    DC's are on-ear rather then over-ear. My cfii loves them. They are small & light, but when the batteries die you are scrambling for new ones as there's basically no passive NR. The LS (and I assume the bose) work about as well as passive DC's even with dead batteries.
     
  3. RyanB

    RyanB Super Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2010
    Messages:
    15,267
    Location:
    Chattanooga, TN

    Display name:
    Ryan
    Lightspeed Sierra. ANR is the same as the Zulu and it’s a few hundred cheaper!
     
  4. JOhnH

    JOhnH Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 20, 2009
    Messages:
    13,559
    Location:
    Florida

    Display name:
    Right Seater
    My Zulu 2's don't do well when the batteries die. If it starts to give a slight, occasional hum it's time to change the batteries because in about 1 minute it will start with the solid and loud hum that overrides any other communications. Other that, I like them, and I like the LIghtSpeed Tangos (wireless). I'm not sure why they discontinued them but they sound as good as the Zulu and I don't have to worry about anyone tripping over the cord. But I do have to remember to charge them up frequently.
     
  5. flyingron

    flyingron Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2007
    Messages:
    22,879
    Location:
    Catawba, NC

    Display name:
    FlyingRon
    Every head's a different shape and size. Best to go to someplace (Oshkosh is a great place to shop) that has all the competition to try on.

    I've got two zulu.3's (one was an upgrade from my old Zulus) and one Tango. I always have a pack of AAs kicking around for the Zulu's (and a few other devices).

    Yeah, I got the tangos after I broke the plug on my Zulus (the one's sent back to upgrade) getting in or out of the plane one day. I figured the Tangos would be less prone to that.
     
  6. Jim K

    Jim K En-Route PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2019
    Messages:
    3,986
    Location:
    CMI

    Display name:
    Insert cool name here
    Whoa that sucks. That could be dangerous at the wrong time, too. I can tell you the 3's don't do that.... they just shut off. If it's nighttime I can sometimes catch the light flashing red instead of green. They last about 50 hours. They used to have an upgrade program to convert 2's to 3's.
     
  7. Racerx

    Racerx Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    May 15, 2020
    Messages:
    2,414

    Display name:
    Ernie
    Had Zulu PFX, they are batteries and the clamping force seemed to be a bit much. Have a20's now. Clamping force is less, but without noise cancelling they're loud. Go try some. It's personal preference.
     
  8. Clip4

    Clip4 Final Approach

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2013
    Messages:
    8,279
    Location:
    A Rubber Room

    Display name:
    Cli4ord
    The ANR is the same. $200 buys a 9% lighter headset with tangle free Kevlar cord, titanium ear cups, a stainless v composite headband and 7 year vs 5 year warranty.

    The Sierra is still a damn good headset with phone compatibility for the budget buyer at 24% less.
     
    idahoflier likes this.
  9. JOhnH

    JOhnH Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 20, 2009
    Messages:
    13,559
    Location:
    Florida

    Display name:
    Right Seater
    The $300 upgrade is still available.
    Question: Does the Zulu 3 sound any better than the 2?
     
  10. Ventucky Red

    Ventucky Red Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Messages:
    1,524

    Display name:
    Jon
    Thanks all for the replies... good stuff..

    So I guess my next question, has anyone here tried one of the ANR retrofit kits? Or, is this just throwing good money after bad?
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2022
    nrpetersen likes this.
  11. asicer

    asicer Final Approach

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2015
    Messages:
    8,461

    Display name:
    asicer
    Pro-X is on-ear. For over-the-ear, you want the One-X. The One-X also has this neat feature:
    https://www.pilotsofamerica.com/community/threads/david-clark-one-x.125427/page-2#post-2994222

    Yeah, ANR isn't as aggressive and the clamping force is still as uncomfortable as ever.
    https://www.pilotsofamerica.com/com...s-sierra-vs-bosex-vs-qfr-on-the-scale.129055/

    It also uses 9v batteries, of which I'm not a big fan. Everything else that I have uses AA and I prefer consistency. However, if you are absolutely in love with the DC 13.4, it does make it better than ever.
     
  12. Ventucky Red

    Ventucky Red Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Messages:
    1,524

    Display name:
    Jon
    I am more of a Ginger or Mary Anne kind of guy :)
     
    Jim K likes this.
  13. Htaylor

    Htaylor Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2015
    Messages:
    310
    Location:
    Juneau, AK Summer, SoCal winter

    Display name:
    Htaylor
    Why does it have to be "or" ? :):):D
     
  14. flyingron

    flyingron Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2007
    Messages:
    22,879
    Location:
    Catawba, NC

    Display name:
    FlyingRon
    OK, but Mrs. Howell is right out.
     
  15. Ventucky Red

    Ventucky Red Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Messages:
    1,524

    Display name:
    Jon
    Trust me when I tell you it is not all that it is cracked up to be.... :p

    I don't know, is there a brand new SR22 in the conversation? :eek::confused::)
     
  16. bdtaz

    bdtaz Pre-Flight

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2013
    Messages:
    73

    Display name:
    btaz
    I installed one in a set of SoftComm headsets a few years ago. Seems to work fine.

    I used the 9V battery for a few years(battery use didn't seem excessive as long as I remembered to turn it off after flight), now have it wired into the ships battery

    Haven't really compared it to anything else but since it was free to me(city was emptying out a hangar across from me; I didn't realize when I grabbed the box it was a retrofit kit) figured I'd give it a go.

    My thought is if you are happy with the fit and comfort of your current headsets(and don't care about Blu-tooth or a phone tie in), and are somewhat handy with a soldering iron, one path forward.
     
  17. texasclouds

    texasclouds En-Route

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2018
    Messages:
    2,836
    Location:
    Bryan, Texas

    Display name:
    Mark
    DC OneX are great for me. I’ve used them about 1800 hrs.
     
  18. Chris Scherry

    Chris Scherry Pre-Flight

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2017
    Messages:
    73
    Location:
    Grafton, OH

    Display name:
    cscherry
    I also started out 20yrs ago with David Clark's. Upgraded to bose and I loved the noise canceling part. In the last two years I traded in my David Clark's and bought two lightspeed Sierra's and I find them heavy, clunky and clampy squeezy on my head compared to the bose . But headsets is definitely a personal thing.
     
  19. nrpetersen

    nrpetersen Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2013
    Messages:
    631
    Location:
    Minnetonka MN

    Display name:
    nrpetersen
    I installed a Headsets Inc ANR kit in my DC H10-40 about 25 years ago & got very impressive results. They operate on a completely different principle being an analog bucking circuit instead of a digital recursive algorithm bucking circuit (I know enough of the technology to only be dangerous). The analog principle would be better at bucking a random noise, and a digital scheme would be better at bucking a steady cyclic repeating noise such as a propeller or exhaust hum. But I think a lot of the noise in a light plane is random due to wind turbulence in which the analog's rejection capability at lower frequencies would be better. The Headsets Inc only really bucks noise below about maybe 200 Hz or so but it seemed to me to be quite capable of reducing low frequency exhaust etc noise as well as random wind noise. Removing high frequency noise with either scheme is easily done passively with a full earcup which the DC provides.

    I never was able to compare Analog vs Headsets Inc kit. I have asked the same question on this and other forums with no results. Surely there is someone who has tried them both in a real cockpit.

    Personally I would think the real application for the Headsets Inc kit would be in motorcycle helmets where low frequency noise and helmet vibration under say 100 Hz) dominates. But they didn't seem to think so when I asked them.:confused:
     
  20. Ventucky Red

    Ventucky Red Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Messages:
    1,524

    Display name:
    Jon
    I was looking at Headsets, Inc. as an alternative from a google search. I have a Peltor (raffle winner) headset and may get the kit to give it a run... Thanks
     
  21. nrpetersen

    nrpetersen Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2013
    Messages:
    631
    Location:
    Minnetonka MN

    Display name:
    nrpetersen
    Warning tho - it is not an easy first-time-with-a-soldering-iron installation!
     
  22. idahoflier

    idahoflier Cleared for Takeoff

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2017
    Messages:
    1,447

    Display name:
    idahoflier
    After incrementally buying increasingly more expensive "cheap" ANR headsets I finally bought a Zulu 3. It's great! The only thing I don't like is the price, but you get what you pay for...
     
  23. asicer

    asicer Final Approach

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2015
    Messages:
    8,461

    Display name:
    asicer
    I have, but not back-to-back. My vague recollection jives with your analysis, though.
     
  24. Ventucky Red

    Ventucky Red Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Messages:
    1,524

    Display name:
    Jon
    I gadgeated Fi betta krappa form the Harvard Skul of Rocekt Sergury... hold my beer, I got this :):D:p

    Thanks for the heads up, if figured it was going to require some finesse with the old soldering iron.
     
    nrpetersen likes this.
  25. Sierra_Hotel

    Sierra_Hotel Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2019
    Messages:
    754

    Display name:
    Sierra_Hotel
    I had a Lightspeed Tango wireless ANR headset that I sold specifically to get a David Clark One-X. Love it. My 20 year old original DC headset is still in my flight back for passengers or students.
     
  26. jayhawk74

    jayhawk74 Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2018
    Messages:
    120

    Display name:
    jayhawk74
    I use the DC One X, which is over the ear not on.
     
  27. Ghery

    Ghery Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2005
    Messages:
    10,822
    Location:
    Olympia, Washington

    Display name:
    Ghery Pettit
    I have a couple pair of Softcomm C-90s that work great. I've had them for a bit over 20 years. ANR still works great. I'd recommend that you try a pair, except that I've heard that Softcomm is no longer in business. Rats, because when these finally die I'll have to replace them, rather than have them fixed.
     
  28. OkieAviator

    OkieAviator Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2014
    Messages:
    1,852

    Display name:
    OkieAviator
    Since you passed on the Bose A20s, does it really matter what second rate headset you pick?
     
  29. OneCharlieTango

    OneCharlieTango Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2018
    Messages:
    777

    Display name:
    OneCharlieTango
    No one can tell you what's going to work best on your head in your cockpit. That's why Sporty's, Marv Golden, and others have generous return policies. Buy one of each and return what you don't like. Or buy the cheaper one and keep it if it's good enough. I've had them all, and don't really love any of them, especially for what they cost. "Good enough" is probably as good as you'll find.
     
  30. NoHeat

    NoHeat En-Route

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2009
    Messages:
    4,760
    Location:
    Iowa City, IA

    Display name:
    17
    I’ve got both A20 and PFX, and to me they sound and feel slightly different but one’s not better than the other. I’m very happy using either one.

    I’m wondering why the PFX is no longer sold. Did Lightspeed replace it with another model, for their top-of-the-line?
     
  31. Ventucky Red

    Ventucky Red Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Messages:
    1,524

    Display name:
    Jon
    Thanks Funny Bose is now considered the second tier product with the audiophiles, glad to see they're holding on the aviation market.
     
    OneCharlieTango likes this.
  32. ateamer

    ateamer Cleared for Takeoff

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2007
    Messages:
    1,040
    Location:
    Port St. Lucie, FL

    Display name:
    ateamer
    I’ve used a bunch, including several ANR headsets - Boze X, Lightspeed Zulu 2 and Sierra, David Clark with a Headsets Inc. retrofit, DRE (defunct company), plus QT Halo and CQ1 in-ear headsets. Of them all, the CQ is my hands-down favorite. By far the most comfortable, glasses aren’t an issue, and it’s as quiet as a top-end ANR. The CQ is built stronger than the Halo, plus the mic stays in place.
     
  33. Racerx

    Racerx Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    May 15, 2020
    Messages:
    2,414

    Display name:
    Ernie
    Don't get me wrong, the PFX is a great headset. But battery life is not it's strongsuit. For me personally the clamping force was a little too much and found I'd have to take them off on longer flights and give my head/ears some relief. Passive noise reduction blows the A20s out of the water. I had to replace the batteries on my a20 in flight today and you realize how loud they are when they're turned off. I also realized how difficult it is trying to get the batteries out. Needed tools. Had to use a paper clip to pry em out. Apparently I need longer fingernails. The duracells that were in there, one had started to leak so that got a deep cleaning.
     
  34. asicer

    asicer Final Approach

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2015
    Messages:
    8,461

    Display name:
    asicer