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Best Motorcycle Helmet Speakers: Enjoy Your Favorite Tunes on Your Bike

These top motorcycle helmet speakers will keep you entertained on your road trip

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BY Matt Sampson / LAST UPDATED ON September 30, 2021

Hands-free devices are not new, especially as cell phone laws tighten across the United States for drivers. But options for motorcycle riders are somewhat limited, and might even encourage people to wear helmets with less coverage to allow for earbud usage. But there's no need to sacrifice your safety. Bluetooth and in-helmet speaker technology are better than ever, so while some riders may prefer to "tune out the noise" while they ride, it's easier than ever to stay connected in the saddle. To help you navigate the landscape, we’ve compiled our favorites for the best in-helmet speakers.

Best Overall
Sena SMH10-10 Motorcycle Bluetooth Headset/Intercom
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Summary
Summary
This unit comes with two speakers, a microphone, and Bluetooth 3.0 connectivity for music, phone calls, and four-way intercom conversations.
Pros
Pros
This headset provides up to 12 hours of talk time on a single charge. It's easy to install and turn your music on and off, and it's very loud and clear.
Cons
Cons
It's pricey. It's designed to be secured with a clamp kit, so it cannot be used with a half helmet. Also, the speakers may not be loud enough at highway speeds.
Best Overall
Sena SMH10-10 Motorcycle Bluetooth Headset/Intercom
Best Value
UClear Digital Pulse Wired Drop-in High Definition Helmet Speakers
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Summary
Summary
These drop-in speakers feature a gold-plated, standard 3.5 mm stereo audio jack and 40 mm diameter driver. They are compatible with most helmet communications systems, audio devices, and smartphones.
Pros
Pros
These speakers are easy to install, don't move around, are comfortable, and don't hurt your ears. The cord can reach your electronic device even if it is mounted on the handlebars.
Cons
Cons
One of the speakers may stop working over a short period of time. Also, the sound may distort or crackle if you turn the volume too high.
Best Value
UClear Digital Pulse Wired Drop-in High Definition Helmet Speakers
Honorable Mention
Outdoor Tech Chips 2.0 Universal Wireless Bluetooth Helmet Audio
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Summary
Summary
These wireless speakers are compatible with any helmet that has an audio drop-in slot. They have a built-in Bluetooth interface and microphone to help you answer calls and stream music without removing the helmet.
Pros
Pros
Offers 10 hours of playtime on a single charge. Sweat-resistant construction. Remains fully functional even in extremely cold weather. Features glove-friendly button controls.
Cons
Cons
May have delayed play and pause functionality. May have connectivity issues with some phone models. The walkie talkie feature is dependent on your phone’s signal.
Honorable Mention
Outdoor Tech Chips 2.0 Universal Wireless Bluetooth Helmet Audio
Man holding Motorcycle Helmet Speakers
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Best Motorcycle Helmet Speakers Reviews & Recommendations

Best Overall
Sena SMH10-10 Motorcycle Bluetooth Headset/Intercom

The Sena SMH10-10 Motorcycle Bluetooth Headset/Intercom comes with two speakers, a microphone, and Bluetooth 3.0 connectivity to listen to music. Additionally, Bluetooth allows for use as a hands-free device with shortcuts for speed-dialing and offers four-way communication for other riders with the same headset. As if this wasn’t enough, the local area communication function also allows for you to share your music with other riders, which can be a good or bad thing, depending on if they like your taste in music.


The system provides up to 12 hours of talk time and 10 days of standby time on a single charge, and its advanced noise control technology cuts down on background noise for both incoming and outgoing audio. In terms of ease of use, this headset is very easy to install and features a large control unit that is great for use with gloves. The Sena is not without its flaws, as it is expensive and designed to be secured using a clamp kit, so it cannot be used with a half helmet. Also, the speakers may not be loud enough at highway speeds, so take that into consideration when comparing these specs against your bike and the noise insulation of your helmet.

Specs:
  • Brand: Sena
  • Color:Black
  • Connectivity Technology: Bluetooth 3.0, 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Model Number: SMH10-10
  • Item Dimensions: 3.31 x 2.22 x 1.52 inches

Pros:

  • 12 hours of talk time on a single charge. 
  • Easy to install 
  • Intuitive Controls
  • Good sound clarity

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Not compatible with all helmets
  • Low volume output
Best Value
UClear Digital Pulse Wired Drop-in High Definition Helmet Speakers

UCLEAR's drop-in speakers feature a gold-plated, standard 3.5mm stereo audio jack and 40mm diameter drivers. The speakers are compatible with most helmet communications systems, audio devices, and smartphones and provide high-fidelity audio. These speakers are easy to install, and you can reposition the sticky Velcro pads to find the best spot in your helmet. Once in place, they’re totally secure and out of the way, so that they don't hurt your ears. The supplied cord is long enough to reach your electronic device, even if it is mounted on the handlebars. 


This bargain option has a few downsides, however. Firstly, it’s not the most durable, and after consistent use, you may experience signal loss or speaker failure. Also, the speakers are not the highest-output and will clip or distort if you crank the volume up too high. Finally, the wire can get in the way, and over time the connectors can fray and degrade.

Specs:
  • Connectivity Technology: Wired
  • Brand: UClear
  • Model Number: 11023
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 3 x 1 inches
  • Item Weight: 1.13 ounces

Pros:

  • Low cost
  • Easy to install 
  • Secure and comfortable
  • Long cord alleviates issues with being wired

Cons:

  • Durability issues
  • Clipping at high volumes
Best for Cold Temps
Outdoor Tech Chips 2.0 Universal Wireless Bluetooth Helmet Audio

This audio system from Outdoor Tech is designed for cold-weather operation and can remain fully functional even in subzero temperatures. It’s a universal fit for all helmets with an audio drop-in slot and uses Bluetooth 4.0 technology with a 32-feet operating distance. Push-button controls allow you to pause, play, or skip to the next song without having to remove your gloves. Alternatively, you can use voice commands to play music or give commands to Siri with the help of the built-in microphone. 


For the winter sports enthusiasts, you can communicate with your team across an unlimited range by downloading the Outdoor Tech (ODT) walkie-talkie application on your phone, and implement these speakers into your ski or snowboard helmet. The speakers run on rechargeable lithium-ion batteries that offer 10 hours of playtime on a single charge. However, it may take longer to play after pausing and you may be forced to use voice commands or pull out your phone to play. Additionally, it may not be compatible with some phone models, so double-check that before you buy.

Specs:

  • Brand: Outdoor Tech
  • Model Number: OT0052
  • Connectivity Technology: Bluetooth 4.0

Pros:

  • 10 hours of playtime on a single charge
  • Sweat-resistant construction
  • Remains fully functional even in extremely cold weather
  •  Glove-friendly button controls

Cons:

  • May have delayed play and pause functionality
  • May have connectivity issues with some phone models
  • The walkie-talkie feature is dependent on your phone’s signal

 

Most Versatile
Sena 10S-01D Motorcycle Bluetooth Communication System (Dual Pack)

This Sena system comes with a communicator and a mount for the side of your helmet, which then connects to two round speakers and a microphone that you attach to the inside of your helmet. Once the hardware is installed, you can easily set up your system with the integrated app. What makes this system stand out is that it easily pairs with other rider’s Sena Bluetooth systems. Built into the unit is HD-quality audio and advanced noise control through the microphone, giving you precise and clear sound no matter the riding conditions.


Unfortunately, this communication system doesn’t work with all helmets. The base is a particular width and could be too narrow for some helmets and the cables for the microphone and speakers can become disconnected from the base, which means they don’t work until you stop and plug them back in. 

Specs:

  • Brand: Sena
  • Model Number: 10S-01D
  • Item Weight: 4.2 ounces
  • Product Dimensions: 3.35 x 2.24 x 1.06 inches

Pros:

  • Full-featured communication and entertainment speaker system
  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • Clear sound quality for both listening and voice
  • Noise filtering software for microphone to limit road noise

Cons:

  • Attachment bracket isn’t compatible with all helmets
  • Cables between the microphone, base, and speakers can become disconnected mid-ride
Honorable Mention
Cardo 45mm Audio Set (Single Pack)

This is a set of replacement speakers for helmet communicators. They have two round speakers that are connected by a wire, and a 3.5mm jack then connects the speakers to your mobile phone or other devices. The speakers have a slim design to make them low-profile inside your helmet. What’s nice about these speakers is the standard jack that makes them compatible with almost any mobile device or media player on the market.


And if you own an older Cardo communicator system, then these speakers are a boost in quality and fit and include a JBL sound processor, which means your music will have an added level of punch to cut through road and engine noise.This might not be an upgrade for everyone, especially if you already own JBL helmet speakers, and feedback can occur.

Specs:

  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 5.5 x 2 inches; 4.16 ounces
  • Item model number: SPAU0010
  • Connectivity Technology: Wired

Pros:

  • Outstanding sound quality
  • Drop-in upgrade for many types of helmet speakers
  • Wide range of compatibility thanks to 3.5mm jack

Cons:

  • Feedback at high volume when used with a communication system.
  • Needs to be turned up to fight road noise

How We Selected The Products 

When selecting the best motorcycle helmet speakers, we evaluated various features, such as the technology used. While Bluetooth technology may be the standard, we also chose some wired options. We also looked at fit, since helmet sizes can vary. In addition, we looked at reviews regarding the sound quality, since not all speakers are created equal.

Our product selections, rankings, and awards for this story are based on research. While we haven’t conducted real-world testing on all of these products yet, we’ve looked at consumer testimonials and data, tutorials, and general discussions on social media and in forums. We also consider price and specification in the context of the segment. And, of course, we rely on our institutional knowledge of the automotive landscape to weed out weak products.

Types of Motorcycle Helmet Speakers

Wireless 

Bluetooth technology has improved quite a bit over the last few years, and it's a desirable feature in a motorcycle helmet, bringing hands-free, untethered listening and telecommunications to your motorcycle experience. The best Bluetooth motorcycle helmet speakers allow you to seamlessly switch between functions, such as music, intercom, and phone calls, with the push of a button, while preserving quality and flexibility. 

Wired 

If you don't want wireless Bluetooth-enabled speakers, you can choose a wired headset instead. The advantage to these systems is that they’re compatible with nearly every media player and aren’t restricted by battery life as much as their wireless brethren. The downside is that they are tethered to your bike in some regard, and the connectors are another part that can break.

Built-In 

Many helmet manufacturers integrate Bluetooth motorcycle speakers into their products. They are pre-fitted to the helmet and provide a one-stop listening and protection solution for the rider. Not all helmet speakers are created equal though, so you have to consider the quality and features of the speaker as well as the same characteristics for the helmet. A downside of this system is that if you want a better pair of helmet speakers, you oftentimes can’t just go them; instead you have to replace the entire helmet.

Key Features

Helmet Size

Before you select the best motorcycle helmet speakers, you need to determine what type of helmet you will be wearing. Some helmets are tighter than others, so you need to ensure that the product will fit properly. For example, if you opt for a helmet headset, it will include speakers that are positioned on both sides of the helmet, and some are bigger than others.

Speaker Size

Built-in speakers are already designed to fit inside a biker’s helmet. But if you're purchasing speakers separately that mount inside of your helmet, you need to consider their diameter and thickness. If the speakers are too thick or wide, they won't fit correctly and will press against your ears.

Sound Quality

The best motorcycle helmet speakers for music, phone calls, and intercom capability should have a high-quality sound. It should be clear and crisp and not muffled or distorted. This is particularly important if you're wearing an open-face helmet that offers less coverage than a full-face helmet. If you can't hear what the speakers are emitting, then they’re useless.

Other Considerations

  • Controls: You can control helmet speakers in a couple of different ways. You can do so manually or by using voice controls. Since many bikers wear gloves, it's beneficial to use a Bluetooth headset and speakers when riding. That way, you don't have to struggle with the volume and other functions with your fingers.
  • Comfort: The best quality motorcycle helmet speakers will feel comfortable next to your ears. They should not distract you in any way because that can be dangerous while you're riding. This goes hand in hand with speaker size and shape and how they fit inside your particular helmet.
  • Durability: Some helmet speaker brands are built better than others. They are designed to withstand a variety of conditions, such as wind, rain, dust, and sweat. The best helmet speakers for motorcycles feature high-quality materials so that they last a long time and are reliable and dependable.
  • Battery Life: The best sounding Bluetooth motorcycle helmet speakers have a long battery life. Some devices consume a lot more energy than others, so be sure to select a product that promises to hold a charge for a long time.

FAQs

Q: Can I use motorcycle speakers in other types of helmets? 

Yes. Many are designed in such a way that you can wear them under other types of helmets, such as those used for activities like paintball.

Q: Are motorcycle helmet speakers waterproof?

It depends on the brand. Some of the best motorcycle helmet speakers are waterproof, while others are not. Either way, it's best to keep them dry to avoid ruining them.

Q: How long will my motorcycle helmet speakers last?

This depends on several factors, including the brand, the quality of the speakers, how often you ride, the conditions the speakers are exposed to, etc. If you purchase a high-quality, dependable brand, and you take care of the speakers, they should last several years.

Final Thoughts

Our pick for the best motorcycle helmet speakers is the Sena SMH10-10 Motorcycle Bluetooth Headset/Intercom. The speaker quality is excellent, it's easy to install, and it provides up to 12 hours of talk time.

Why Trust Us

The Drive seeks to be the internet’s premier destination for news, features, reviews and guides about modern automotive culture.

Founded as the /DRIVE YouTube channel before growing into a full-fledged online publication in 2015, The Drive brings you the best of what’s new in the world of speed, from gear reviews to the latest industry coverage—all from a veteran team of writers and editors with many decades of combined hands-on experience. Our reviews are driven by a combination of hands-on testing, expert input, “wisdom of the crowd” assessments from actual buyers, and our own expertise. We always aim to offer genuine, accurate guides to help you find the best picks.