Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners? - BMW Luxury Touring Community
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post #1 of 27 Old Apr 9th, 2019, 7:27 pm Thread Starter
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Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

I am in the market for a headset that will interface well with my RT and became interested in the Cardo Packtalk Slim with JBL speakers. This is my first headset so all I have to go on are reviews at this point. Are there any owners out there with feedback on the unit? Happy for any info. TIA.
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post #2 of 27 Old Apr 9th, 2019, 8:52 pm
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

I just installed the Packtalk Slim w/JBL onto my Shoei GT-Air, which had previously been outfitted with a Sena 20S Evo. The installation was pretty straightforward, though their guide doesn't do a very good job of describing how the clamps are used with the battery pack (you also need to go online to determine with size clamp to use). I eventually decided to use the adapter piece designed for an HJC helmet to lock the clamp onto the battery pack. The rest of the installation was super easy

The JBL speakers sound VERY nice. I had previously upgraded my Sena 20S speakers with UClear speakers. I thought those sounded pretty good... the JBL sounds much better. The voice control works great for controlling my iPhone audio or the built-in radio (which has fairly decent reception compared to other comm units I've owned).

The control buttons on the Slim are fairly easy to discern, once you've had a chance to fiddle with them and get used to how the upper and lower buttons feel with a glove. I have yet to link the intercom with anyone else's comm unit, but expect it to perform adequately using bluetooth for short distances. The Cardo app works well for basic set-up, and looks to be great for setting up intercom groupings and/or buddy lists. I don't typically link up with multiple riders in a large group... usually just my wife on the intercom or a single buddy on a bike in close proximity. I won't reap the benefit of the mesh DMC until I find some friends with Cardo units.

Overall I'm happy with my purchase, and with the 25% MOA discount, I was happy to not pay full price. I was fed up with my Sena 20S which had glitchy volume issues, and would crap-out whenever I rode in heavy rain.
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post #3 of 27 Old Apr 10th, 2019, 10:43 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

Quote:
Originally Posted by srwilliams55 View Post
I just installed the Packtalk Slim w/JBL onto my Shoei GT-Air, which had previously been outfitted with a Sena 20S Evo. The installation was pretty straightforward, though their guide doesn't do a very good job of describing how the clamps are used with the battery pack (you also need to go online to determine with size clamp to use). I eventually decided to use the adapter piece designed for an HJC helmet to lock the clamp onto the battery pack. The rest of the installation was super easy

The JBL speakers sound VERY nice. I had previously upgraded my Sena 20S speakers with UClear speakers. I thought those sounded pretty good... the JBL sounds much better. The voice control works great for controlling my iPhone audio or the built-in radio (which has fairly decent reception compared to other comm units I've owned).

The control buttons on the Slim are fairly easy to discern, once you've had a chance to fiddle with them and get used to how the upper and lower buttons feel with a glove. I have yet to link the intercom with anyone else's comm unit, but expect it to perform adequately using bluetooth for short distances. The Cardo app works well for basic set-up, and looks to be great for setting up intercom groupings and/or buddy lists. I don't typically link up with multiple riders in a large group... usually just my wife on the intercom or a single buddy on a bike in close proximity. I won't reap the benefit of the mesh DMC until I find some friends with Cardo units.

Overall I'm happy with my purchase, and with the 25% MOA discount, I was happy to not pay full price. I was fed up with my Sena 20S which had glitchy volume issues, and would crap-out whenever I rode in heavy rain.
Thanks for the info.
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post #4 of 27 Old Apr 11th, 2019, 3:01 am
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

I have a Packtalk Bold, not the same as the slim, but same software. It all works brilliantly. I do use the DMC mesh network for riding with mates and I also use it for intercom between me and my pillion. Again all works very well.
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post #5 of 27 Old Apr 17th, 2019, 3:29 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

So to update everyone, I bought the Packtalk Slim. I needed to cut a small bit of trim of my helmet but after that the installation was pretty easy. I will have to modify the shell a little more as well, as the speaker pockets didn't line up to my ears well. I have the BMW audio system on my bike and did run into trouble getting my phone to stream to the headset with the recommended setup. I have read many posts about the best way to pair the unit to a bike with the audio system and the nav VI but didn't find any that resolved all the issues. As of now the only way I could get the phone, nav Vi and streaming (Pandora, etc) was to eliminate pairing with the bike's bluetooth. A few glitches and not ideal but it seems to work for the most part and the Packtalk has an FM radio onboard so not so bad. Since I never used one before I have nothing to compare it to but it's much better than what I had. I haven't tried the intercom connection yet as I only have one unit and haven't been riding. I will post the results of that when I have them.

If anyone else has any words of wisdom as to how to connect and make everything work perfectly I would like to hear it.

Thanks for the input!
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post #6 of 27 Old Oct 18th, 2019, 10:27 am
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

It might be a bit late as I noted the thread was in April. I have a Schuberth C4 helmet with the coms etc. I use a SC 1 as a remote control. I have had mobile calls and they have always been clear as a bell. The issue I have is that the system is basically a Sena unit developed in conjunction with the 2 companies and I have never been happy with the settings to use the coms and a few other things as they are not easy to hear the pairing modes etc. I wear hearing aids normally so that it is not possible to wear them with the helmet on, due to the fact when taking the helmet off the hearing aids go flying through the air lol. So I have had to be researching coms units and helmets with coms incorporated in them. I love the comfort of the Schuberth with the speakers as they have never put any pressure on my ears the helmet is one of the most comfortable helmets I have ever owned. But doing all the research that I normally do along with watching so many YouTube reviews I think I will be happy with the Cardo Packtalk single unit as I don't take passengers on my bike. From everything I have found so far the Cardo has come a long way with ease of use and pairing, the voice control seems to be way better than the Sena and the new JBL speakers seem to be a winner from all the reviews. They certainly look slim enough to be comfortable in the helmet without being a pain like the Sena S20 was in in my last helmet. I mainly use the system for music, but it is nice to be able to take a phone call when needed to. My issue is that with the Schuberth I would have to buy a new helmet also. I don't mind that as mine is getting on and about 3 years old at this time. So now I am looking at a full face modular helmet that is light comfortable to allow both the comfort and ability to use the Cardo Packtalk in that helmet. I have owned Shoei Neotec and Shark Evo 3 also I have had a BMW Systems helmets in the past but at the moment I am leaning towards a Bell SRT to enable me to use the Cardo system. I would like any feedback from anyone using the Bell helmets with or without a coms unit. Or any other recommendations on a light helmet that they use would be great thanks. My main concern is to end up with a light helmet that I can integrate the Cardo Packtalk without being uncomfortable or major mods to the helmet.
Looking forward to hearing back before I jump into a new helmet and spend a heap of dollars on something that I won't like wearing. The Schuberth works and feels nice on long trips but is getting on in age, plus I am not a fan of the Sena system in this helmet, although I can basically use it for what I would use the new Cardo for but with a better voice control like the Cardo has ,they seem to be one of the best units around at the moment and come a long way from what they use to be.

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post #7 of 27 Old Dec 1st, 2019, 1:52 pm
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

I'm about to jump ship from Sena for the PAK TALK Bold. Does anyone know if you can use ear buds with this unit?

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post #8 of 27 Old Dec 1st, 2019, 4:49 pm
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

Quote:
Originally Posted by reg26 View Post
I'm about to jump ship from Sena for the PAK TALK Bold. Does anyone know if you can use ear buds with this unit?
Yes, you can. There is a 3.5mm plug that you either use for your ear buds or for the included JBL speakers that you install in the helmet.
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post #9 of 27 Old Dec 1st, 2019, 5:34 pm
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

THANKS! I will now buy them :-)

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post #10 of 27 Old Dec 1st, 2019, 8:17 pm
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

I really like the Packtalk unit. It's reliable and the sound is great (I also used mine with in-ear monitors). I did a two week trip with 3 buddies this summer through CO, WY and MT and we all had the Packtalk on our helmets. The mesh system worked beautifully.

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post #11 of 27 Old Dec 9th, 2019, 1:25 pm
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

The guys I ride with are considering moving from the Sena 20s to the PackTalk Bold with JBL speakers. My concern is that with my Schuberth C4, the JBL speakers, since they are larger, will be too tight against my noggin. With the 3.5 mm plug I guess I could do without the JBL speakers. Has anyone tried the JBL's and can comment on the size, fit?
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post #12 of 27 Old Dec 10th, 2019, 9:55 am
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

I just upgraded my Cardo Freecom 2 to a Freecom 2+ with the JBL speakers. In my Shoei Neotec there is plenty of room for the speakers. In fact, you want to have them tight up against your ears for best sound. Compared to the original Freecom speakers, the JBL's are a major improvement in sound. Better bass, smoother mid range, less fatiguing at highway speeds. There are some little velcro spacer pads included with the kit to get the speakers tighter to your ears if you have speaker indentations in your helmet. Freecom units don't have the voice activation feature, but do have a decent radio and will do rider-passenger and rider-rider close range connection, which is all I need. I haven't bothered to pair to my 2013 RT as I figure the in-helmet sound is going to be better than the speakers anyway. Pairing to my iphone was easy.
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post #13 of 27 Old Dec 10th, 2019, 11:39 am
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

Quote:
Originally Posted by reg26 View Post
I'm about to jump ship from Sena for the PAK TALK Bold. Does anyone know if you can use ear buds with this unit?
If you are mainly going to use the Cardo with earphones I have a little trick on how to set up the plug. Just run one zip tie around the base and then two zip ties around the plug and the first zip tie. Makes it very sturdy and handy for plugging and unplugging your earphones. If you have a 3D printer I can send you link for the second option.
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post #14 of 27 Old Dec 14th, 2019, 10:21 am
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ravaldez View Post
The guys I ride with are considering moving from the Sena 20s to the PackTalk Bold with JBL speakers. My concern is that with my Schuberth C4, the JBL speakers, since they are larger, will be too tight against my noggin. With the 3.5 mm plug I guess I could do without the JBL speakers. Has anyone tried the JBL's and can comment on the size, fit?
Go on their website and it will tell you which of the helmets are a good fit for either the Bold or the Slim Units
Was thinking about getting away from my new SRL (Shoei Neotec 2) that doesn't have a 3.5 jack and the battery life sucks! Didn't see the N2 on their website when checking compatibility by my local dealer said they could make it work
Haven't purchased the set yet but the Cardo Units are on my radar!

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post #15 of 27 Old Dec 14th, 2019, 11:38 pm
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

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Originally Posted by OD4444 View Post
I am in the market for a headset that will interface well with my RT and became interested in the Cardo Packtalk Slim with JBL speakers. This is my first headset so all I have to go on are reviews at this point. Are there any owners out there with feedback on the unit? Happy for any info. TIA.
I have the Packtalk Bold, which is similar, although I bought it before the JBL speaker option was available. It works very well for music. I don't accept many phone calls on the bike, but the audio quality for both parties in the conversation has been acceptable, due to the noise cancelling. The caller will not hear engine or wind noise, as it cuts your outgoing audio completely unless you're talking. Buttons are easy to use with gloved hands, easy volume up / down. Sound quality for music is good, loudness is acceptable at all speeds, even on my naked bike. On the RT of course it's better, less wind. The age old issue is, if your friends have a Sena, it'll be a slight PIA to connect. I have found a way, but haven't tried with more than 2 riders. On a group ride with several Cardo's, it's flawless. Can even play your music and still hear all parties on the ride. Definitely recommend. I'm fairly certain the Slim has most, if not all, of these features. And your JBL speakers will be even better. I've heard they aren't necessarily louder, but are more clear. My 2 cents.

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post #16 of 27 Old Dec 17th, 2019, 10:53 am
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

so 2 questions about the Packtalk Slim.

First, will it work in mesh, full function with the Bold? Are there any limitations using the slim with others who use the bold?

Second is the 25% off, is this on full retail?
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post #17 of 27 Old Dec 17th, 2019, 11:33 am
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

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so 2 questions about the Packtalk Slim.

First, will it work in mesh, full function with the Bold? Are there any limitations using the slim with others who use the bold?

Second is the 25% off, is this on full retail?
Yes, the Slim has the same MESH system as the Bold so you can link up to both.

There are no technical differences between the Bold and the Slim, just the location of the battery.

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post #18 of 27 Old Dec 17th, 2019, 6:08 pm
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

And the Slim has the status light on the battery where it will shine in your passengers eyes at night.


Quote:
Originally Posted by scottydawg View Post
Yes, the Slim has the same MESH system as the Bold so you can link up to both.

There are no technical differences between the Bold and the Slim, just the location of the battery.

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post #19 of 27 Old Dec 18th, 2019, 4:30 pm
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

I chose the SLIM; I bought it for the voice-command ability. I never touch any buttons other than to turn the unit on/off.
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post #20 of 27 Old Dec 19th, 2019, 10:55 am
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

I am also looking at moving from Sena after 9 yrs.

Has anyone had experience with connecting the Cardo Paktalk to a SENA SM10, have as part of the change I made using an Audio bridge fed from the RT speakers..
Thanks

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post #21 of 27 Old Dec 26th, 2019, 11:11 am
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

Quote:
Originally Posted by scottydawg View Post
If you are mainly going to use the Cardo with earphones I have a little trick on how to set up the plug. Just run one zip tie around the base and then two zip ties around the plug and the first zip tie. Makes it very sturdy and handy for plugging and unplugging your earphones. If you have a 3D printer I can send you link for the second option.
Scott, I would be interested in that file. My son has a 3D printer, I could ask him to make me a couple. Santa brought me a set of Packtalk Bold communicators!

Thanks,

John.
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post #22 of 27 Old Dec 26th, 2019, 11:52 am
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

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Scott, I would be interested in that file. My son has a 3D printer, I could ask him to make me a couple. Santa brought me a set of Packtalk Bold communicators!

Thanks,

John.

I will attach a few photos. One of my zip tie method and a couple of the 3D print method. What kind of earphones are you using? If you don't already have a pair I suggest checking out the ones that Marilyn makes at PlugUP: https://www.plugup.com/custom_made_e...budss_s/73.htm

Here is the link to the 3D Printer file: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:3598194
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post #23 of 27 Old Dec 26th, 2019, 2:56 pm
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bighopper View Post
I am also looking at moving from Sena after 9 yrs.

Has anyone had experience with connecting the Cardo Paktalk to a SENA SM10, have as part of the change I made using an Audio bridge fed from the RT speakers..
Thanks
I have a similar plan but with a newer SENA unit. Any feedback is appreciated.

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post #24 of 27 Old Dec 27th, 2019, 10:51 am
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

Quote:
Originally Posted by scottydawg View Post
I will attach a few photos. One of my zip tie method and a couple of the 3D print method. What kind of earphones are you using? If you don't already have a pair I suggest checking out the ones that Marilyn makes at PlugUP: https://www.plugup.com/custom_made_e...budss_s/73.htm

Here is the link to the 3D Printer file: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:3598194
Thank you!

I sent the file to my son, who is out here in CA visiting... Dang it, go home son, print this for me!

I use a set of 2 driver hard molded plugs I got from the guy who was at Laguna Seca at the races a couple of years ago. I think it is the same guy who comes to all of the MOA rallies. Fit Ear. I use those plugs to mow the lawn, ride the motorcycle, love them.
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post #25 of 27 Old Dec 27th, 2019, 11:14 am
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

I just received the Freedom 1+ with passenger unit for Xmas. My helmet was too small to include speakers so a new helmet was in order. For lightness and A shell that has ear holes for positioning the speakers I found a well made helmet called the LS2. It has the ratched style helmet strap lock and surprising light for a modular. JUST don't buy it from MC Powersports - a third party seller on Amazon unless you are sure of your size. They are problematic taking anything back for return or exchange. I measure 22.4 across the crown and that correlates to size medium. It runs small. They would not exchange without me paying shipping both ways which I have been quoted by UPS as $39 each way. Making that cost too much as the price of the helmet was on sale for $109. By the time I pay for restocking to return or freight both ways it outweighs the cost of the helmet so I will either sell it or carve up the interior to facilitate a better fit for me. I need a large from LS2 company. If you order one, look to a larger size as they run small. YMMV From testing the Cardo unit works very well with bluetooth phone/radio/ipod so far!

47+ Yrs Daily Motorcycle Street riding for Therapy

2012 Victory Cross Country Tour
2007 Black Suzuki DL1000 V-Strom - Sold
2007 Red Moto Guzzi Norge 1200 - Sold
2005 LT Dark Graphite - (Sold)
2005 PearlBlue FJR1300 (Sold)
3 BMW's, 8 HD baggers, 3 Goldwings & 860K + miles later
*Ridin steady since 1973
Religion began when the first scoundrel met the first fool. Voltaire.

usmctpdog is offline  
post #26 of 27 Old Yesterday, 3:41 pm
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PMitchell View Post
I have a similar plan but with a newer SENA unit. Any feedback is appreciated.
I got your PM, but don't have enough posts to respond. I'll get back to you in one more post

'18 R1200RT
'12 F650GS Twin
srwilliams55 is offline  
post #27 of 27 Old Yesterday, 3:43 pm
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Re: Any Cardo Packtalk Slim Owners?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Goose11 View Post
And the Slim has the status light on the battery where it will shine in your passengers eyes at night.
My wife didn't notice it in the daylight, but I'll be adding a piece of electrical tape over it before we ride at night.

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'12 F650GS Twin
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