Comms and TTD, and Sena update - BMW K1600 Forum : BMW K1600 GT and GTL Forums
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post #1 of 28 Old 04-23-2019, 01:01 AM Thread Starter
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Comms and TTD, and Sena update

First things first. Sena has released a firmware (now v 2.1) update for the 30K. The docs on it seem to be lacking, but the firmware is out there.


For the TTD coming in 2 weeks, is there a comm we can all (or mostly all) use for group rides, and that sort of thing? Perhaps an online app if there are too many various users of different hardware?

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post #2 of 28 Old 04-23-2019, 04:31 PM
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Thanks - updated my 30k - takes about 10 minutes
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post #3 of 28 Old 04-24-2019, 05:16 AM
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Originally Posted by TarkusNY View Post
For the TTD coming in 2 weeks, is there a comm we can all (or mostly all) use for group rides, and that sort of thing? Perhaps an online app if there are too many various users of different hardware?
Group comms have been an issue for some time (CB was the most reliable, but that ship has sailed for most of us). Weíve tried (and some of us continue to work on) GMRS radio systems.

BT is a non-starter (crazy linkages to get bigger groups connected, constant dropouts, etc).

Mesh is promising - a couple of groups that I ride with have standardized on the Sena 30K and it works, although range isnít great (especially in the mountains) and users have to disconnect from and reconnect to the mesh a few times per day when their words becomes unrecognizable. My biggest issue with Senaís mesh is that mics are hot all the time (you can mute, but it takes 1 second to unmute, which can be an eternity when things go sideways). I love that the mesh is self-healing, so you donít have the BT single point of failure issue.

Iíve heard good things about the Cardo Packtalk, but I donít know anyone whoís used Cardoís mesh in a group of more than 3 riders. Unfortunately, Cardo and Senaís mesh donít seem to, ahem, mesh together, so if a group has multiple riders with both brands you can have a mesh running for each brand, then have a rider from each brand BT together, thus theoretically joining the 2 mesh networks, but now youíre back to that single point of failure.

For the spirited group, I plan to have Sena mesh and GMRS available for comms.

To what online app are you referring? If thereís a better way to skin the cat, Iím in!
Edit: are you referring to mobile phone apps like Zello or Garminís RideConnected? If so, they donít work where theyíre needed most - in the mountains - since cell coverage is spotty (letís not get into the ďfeaturesĒ that plague RideConnected).
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Last edited by Qbird66; 04-24-2019 at 06:35 AM.
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post #4 of 28 Old 04-24-2019, 06:01 AM
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All of Kevin's 'comms comments' are germane. For my Couples ride I have GMRS available for comms.

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post #5 of 28 Old 04-24-2019, 09:03 AM Thread Starter
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It seems that a major limiting factor is going to be Cellular Phone service. So a device that can support its own communication such as the GMRS radio is currently the best method. However, for me getting one wired or BT'd into my Sena 30K is one issue, with the other is compatibility between the GMRS's preset channels.

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post #6 of 28 Old 04-24-2019, 09:32 AM
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I echo the above. GMRS way better than BT. I have Sena 20s so cannot comment on mesh.

I will add that GMRS also does not affect headset/20s battery life as BT and Mesh do

Re adding to your setup, the Sena SR10 w appropriate GMRS/2 way cable has worked exceptionally well for me thus far and is ďallĒ you need.

Channel mappings are available on the forum and my recommendation is to go with the standard so youíre grounded if you ride w multiple groups. My radio has >100 programmable channels, so I programmed the standard and K1600forum Chanelís both.

SR10 + cable + radio was ~$250. technically you need a FCC license for GMRS @ $70/10years. May sound like a lot but once i tried it, I was like wow this is so much better than BT!

I have a Baofeng cable i can bring to TTD if someone has a laptop we can use to program those radios and can download CHIRP.


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Justin / 2015 K1600GT
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post #7 of 28 Old 04-24-2019, 09:49 AM Thread Starter
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I'll have a my Windows laptop with me (I need it for work no matter where or what I'm doing). BYOUSBC (Bring your own USB cable). Send me the URL for the CHIRP and I'll have it installed. I also have the GS911 Hex software installed in case you need to use your own GS911.

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post #8 of 28 Old 04-24-2019, 09:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TarkusNY View Post
It seems that a major limiting factor is going to be Cellular Phone service. So a device that can support its own communication such as the GMRS radio is currently the best method. However, for me getting one wired or BT'd into my Sena 30K is one issue, with the other is compatibility between the GMRS's preset channels.
Most of us have our radios programmed using RL Lemke's chart, with 462.5500 as the comm channel. Here's a link to some GMRS discussions. If you get a GMRS radio, get one that can transmit at least 3 watts. And 6xGrins is correct, Sena SR10 + radio-specific cable is the best way to connect your radio and BT headset.

If you get a GMRS radio, do NOT get a blade antenna!
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Last edited by Qbird66; 04-24-2019 at 10:05 AM.
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post #9 of 28 Old 04-24-2019, 03:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 6xGrins View Post
I echo the above. GMRS way better than BT. I have Sena 20s so cannot comment on mesh.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

I felt the same way until mesh came out. After being disappointed with Bluetooth pairing in a group for bike to bike communication for so many years I was hard in the 2 way radio camp when Cardo introduced PackTalk. I took a flier on a PackTalk set even though I had just purchased a new 20S. We tried it once between two riders and knew what our future would be. Our group has never looked back.



For the upcoming TTD event the mesh vs. GMRS is probably a moot point for trying to get all or many of those riders able to communicate but for smaller groups I was amazed how mesh changed the game. So much easier in every way for our crew which can range from two to twelve.
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post #10 of 28 Old 04-24-2019, 07:37 PM
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I’d shoot myself if I had to connect to 12 other bikes with a hot mike!

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