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      02-28-2014, 11:59 AM   #1
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Instructors: What in-car communicator to buy?

I'm going to a couple of instructor clinics this spring and need to get an in-car communicator, not sure which one is best to start out with. I've searched but have found little other than the ubiquitous Chatterbox stuff. Looking at the Chatterbox Tandem Pro 2 Communicator. Any other choices to consider? Comments welcome.

Thanks.

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      02-28-2014, 12:21 PM   #2
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The Chatterbox is the standard among instructors.

When you receive it - make SURE that you take the student headset and tie wrap the rigid microphone stem tightly to the cable at the top of the stem. That way when the student uses the cable to pull it out of their helmet (and you should make sure they know to NOT do that) - the cable doesn't tear/pull out leaving you with a dead headset and paying for a not-so-cheap replacement. They WILL yank on the cable - so plan on it and make it bulletproof.

The wires to the headsets are more fine than you can imagine. Re-soldering them is not a project I'd recommend planning on.


If you are a student - considering buying your own in-helmet headset that will just quickly plug into the instructor's Chatterbox. It is:

> MUCH more comfortable for you (fits much better)
> Doesn't cause wear and tear on your helmet liner - as caused when you push and pull the standard one in and out
> Gets you on track faster once the instructor gets in.
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      02-28-2014, 02:23 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Estoril Blue View Post
The Chatterbox is the standard among instructors.

When you receive it - make SURE that you take the student headset and tie wrap the rigid microphone stem tightly to the cable at the top of the stem. That way when the student uses the cable to pull it out of their helmet (and you should make sure they know to NOT do that) - the cable doesn't tear/pull out leaving you with a dead headset and paying for a not-so-cheap replacement. They WILL yank on the cable - so plan on it and make it bulletproof.

The wires to the headsets are more fine than you can imagine. Re-soldering them is not a project I'd recommend planning on.


If you are a student - considering buying your own in-helmet headset that will just quickly plug into the instructor's Chatterbox. It is:

> MUCH more comfortable for you (fits much better)
> Doesn't cause wear and tear on your helmet liner - as caused when you push and pull the standard one in and out
> Gets you on track faster once the instructor gets in.
I've been thinking about getting my own in-helmet headset. Can you provide a link? I'm not sure what I need. Thanks.
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      02-28-2014, 02:46 PM   #4
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Ditto what the others said. I have used the older tandem for several years without issue and still use it. It isn't broke, so no need to replace . Call Ron at Discovery Parts for additional info. He is in your back yard, is a subject matter expert, and is in happy to talk products with you. He'll also give you a 10% if you are a member of certain organizations(such as NASA).
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      02-28-2014, 02:52 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M3 Esq. View Post
I've been thinking about getting my own in-helmet headset. Can you provide a link? I'm not sure what I need. Thanks.

You need the Chatterbox Full-Face headset for an in-helmet installation. This will plug into the instructor's coiled extension cable.

Note: There are two generations of Chatterboxes. Most Instructors have moved to the most recent that came out a little over a year ago. The components are NOT compatible between generations. The older generation is 5 pin DIN. The current generation in mini-banana audio plug. An adapter cable is available - but very few instructors have them.



http://www.ogracing.com/chatterbox-t...l-face-headset
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      02-28-2014, 03:36 PM   #6
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Along the lines of the fire suit discussion, is it cool to walk around the paddock with your in-helmet microphone cord velcroed to the top of your helmet like ALMS drivers for quick seat changes?
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      02-28-2014, 03:44 PM   #7
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I just ordered one, with the adapter. I got a wicked ear infection one time and kind of look twice at the ear piece every time I stick it into my ear.
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      02-28-2014, 04:37 PM   #8
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When I bought my Simpson helmet I was intrigued by the built-in communicator option, but in addition to being hugely expensive it only provided the earpiece, not the microphone. Evidently it's intended just for drivers to hear their pit crew unless they want to add something else.
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      02-28-2014, 05:48 PM   #9
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I use the Tandem Pro 2 Communicator and have the adapter cable for my Stilo helmet that is already wired for communications, works great and very clear. Charge lasts a long time - have used it for 2 days back to back instructing and it still has juice left over. The student earpiece just slides in their helmet easily and the boom is adjustable. Nice set up.

We also have a OMP unit that has a whole bunch of features, but is overkill for instructing.
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      02-28-2014, 09:10 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LiM3y
Along the lines of the fire suit discussion, is it cool to walk around the paddock with your in-helmet microphone cord velcroed to the top of your helmet like ALMS drivers for quick seat changes?
You better be f@cking fast if you rock that look.
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      02-28-2014, 10:11 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brent Dalton View Post
Ditto what the others said. I have used the older tandem for several years without issue and still use it. It isn't broke, so no need to replace . Call Ron at Discovery Parts for additional info. He is in your back yard, is a subject matter expert, and is in happy to talk products with you. He'll also give you a 10% if you are a member of certain organizations(such as NASA).
Actually, I will be seeing Ron in a week at our CCA event at RA. Excellent idea!
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      02-28-2014, 10:14 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LiM3y View Post
I just ordered one, with the adapter. I got a wicked ear infection one time and kind of look twice at the ear piece every time I stick it into my ear.
see, if you had been wearing the Lysol driving suit you wouldn't have gotten the infection.
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      03-01-2014, 10:09 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Estoril Blue View Post
The Chatterbox is the standard among instructors.

When you receive it - make SURE that you take the student headset and tie wrap the rigid microphone stem tightly to the cable at the top of the stem.

pic? im tired of damaged headsets :/
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      03-01-2014, 10:25 AM   #14
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The Pro 2 works pretty well in a relatively quiet environment, but it's not very good in a race-car/open exhaust. The input sensitivity is set too high, and the signal clips big time. The old Pro unit did not do this as much. but are not available anymore. Overall it works well enough, but I'm not thrilled with it.
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      03-01-2014, 11:28 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sleeper519 View Post
I'm going to a couple of instructor clinics this spring and need to get an in-car communicator, not sure which one is best to start out with. I've searched but have found little other than the ubiquitous Chatterbox stuff. Looking at the Chatterbox Tandem Pro 2 Communicator. Any other choices to consider? Comments welcome.

Thanks.

-Bill
I bought a chatterbox and headsets last year and used them one time and no longer have a need for them. If you want them I can send them to you.
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      03-02-2014, 10:18 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Estoril Blue
The Chatterbox is the standard among instructors.

When you receive it - make SURE that you take the student headset and tie wrap the rigid microphone stem tightly to the cable at the top of the stem. That way when the student uses the cable to pull it out of their helmet (and you should make sure they know to NOT do that) - the cable doesn't tear/pull out leaving you with a dead headset and paying for a not-so-cheap replacement. They WILL yank on the cable - so plan on it and make it bulletproof.

The wires to the headsets are more fine than you can imagine. Re-soldering them is not a project I'd recommend planning on.


If you are a student - considering buying your own in-helmet headset that will just quickly plug into the instructor's Chatterbox. It is:

> MUCH more comfortable for you (fits much better)
> Doesn't cause wear and tear on your helmet liner - as caused when you push and pull the standard one in and out
> Gets you on track faster once the instructor gets in.
+1 to the zip tie. All students will pull at the damned cord so your headset won't last long.

I velcro the chatterbox to my helmet...the clip is suspect.

I probably should take off the foam on the student earpiece...lots of condensation from all of the mouth breathing that happens on track.

I swear, it's the funniest thing to hear someone mouth breathing into the mic like they're banging a hooker.
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      03-02-2014, 10:21 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjae1976 View Post
I swear, it's the funniest thing to hear someone mouth breathing into the mic like they're banging a hooker.
Ha! now makes me think every time an instructor gave me one of those to use.
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      03-02-2014, 10:43 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjae1976 View Post
I velcro the chatterbox to my helmet...the clip is suspect.
I'm on the 3rd one:


IMO, the top part should have been metallic. Or I'm just doing something wrong

I like the velcro idea, will try it.
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      03-03-2014, 12:46 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjae1976 View Post
+1 to the zip tie. All students will pull at the damned cord so your headset won't last long.

I velcro the chatterbox to my helmet...the clip is suspect.

I probably should take off the foam on the student earpiece...lots of condensation from all of the mouth breathing that happens on track.

I swear, it's the funniest thing to hear someone mouth breathing into the mic like they're banging a hooker.
I have found that the foam on the microphone helps mute wind noise on students with open face helmets.
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      03-03-2014, 09:17 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjae1976 View Post
I swear, it's the funniest thing to hear someone mouth breathing into the mic like they're banging a hooker.
Another disturbing insight into BJ's private life we didn't need to know.
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      03-03-2014, 01:10 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LiM3y View Post
Another disturbing insight into BJ's private life we didn't need to know.
Hooker??... Why was bigjae routing his microphone to the trunk?
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      03-03-2014, 04:33 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leo95se View Post
pic? im tired of damaged headsets :/

This is how I have done it. 3 tie-wraps. Note the strain relief slack above the top tie wrap. They need to be snug for this to work.

And I tie-wrap the microphone foam too. Otherwise it will be gone in a flash.




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