Add Sidetone for Intercom and Phone Conversations

Commenti

73 commenti

  • Marc Woo
    Marc Woo

    We have considered this feature before and still thinking about it how to provide this solidly. Imagine the situation your voice feedback, your friend's and possible wind noise are mixed together at higher speed. Sometimes it is annoying. Anyway, we will consider to provide it better way, maybe as an optional parameter or something?


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  • Marc Brooks
    Marc Brooks

    I would be perfectly fine if you punted and said this will only work with the earplug base (since we're the people that can't hear out own voice).

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  • Christian Aasland
    Christian Aasland

    When I have stopped for gas or to ask for directions etc. I cannot hear other people talk, because my earbuds isolate very good. It would be nice to be able to turn on the microphone and hear people without having to take off the helmet.

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  • Robin Rumbolt
    Robin Rumbolt

    We are powered paraglider pilots using Sena SMH10 for comms.  Very clear and crisp communications, but we cannot hear our own voices and have to ask if others can hear us. We are used to having sidetone. Can this be enabled on SMH10 units? It is REALLY needed!!

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  • RBEmerson
    RBEmerson

    Please, Sena. This can't be that hard to do. And, yes, making it a switchable option would be a good idea. As to the wind noise issue, I ride with a couple and the person in the back has serious wind noise problems. That's annoying (I'm working on a better place for that mic - the particular modular helmet involved makes this a real challenge) but I can still talk with both people over the wind noise. Adding side-tone wouldn't be a problem - and it would convince the "noisy" rider to do more about the problem - heh, heh, heh...

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  • Dennis J. Haggerty
    Dennis J. Haggerty

    This was the first thing my wife commented on when trying out the SMH10 for the first time. We are coming from an older Autocom system where we would blow into the microphone occasionally to trigger VOX and make sure it was working. She "blew the dust off the microphone" and heard nothing. It helps to regulate your voice level when you hear what the person on the other end hears.

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  • RBEmerson
    RBEmerson

    I recently had an exchange with Sena about adding side tone support. Long story short, I couldn't even get a confirmation that Sena is actively looking into support for side tone.

    OTOH, they added support for sharing music. [/head scratch] Looking into the requests for the music share feature, it seems there are many posts on the topic (and lots of topic drift). With that in mind, the best thing to do is confiscate the keys to the bike of anyone you know with a Sena installation, and tell them they get the keys back when they demand side tone support. Barring that, at least really, really pester your Sena-using friends into posting a "I want side tone" post in this or one of the three other side topics in this forum. I guess Sena does listen to lots of posts. Or not...

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  • Shawn Witt
    Shawn Witt

    I guess SENA is still blind to this request, do they read these forums?

     

    Shawn

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  • RBEmerson
    RBEmerson

    Well, since you ask, here's the final, verbatim, response I got from Sena after trying to find out why they keep ignoring the side tone issue:

    "We are aware of the requests from customers on our forums as some other requests for different features for the SMH10 have been addressed. Those requested features have taken time to be designed, tested, and implemented into our products and the same will be applied if the Side Tone feature is included in the future.


    Chris Woodyard
    Technical Support Engineer
    Sena Technologies Inc."

    In getting together my arguments for side tone support, I found 28 posts on the subject, with the first request 2 1/2 years ago. On 26 April 2012 Sena posted "[W]e remember your
    suggestion. We are doing the applicability on the next firmware. We will keep you informed later. Thank you".

    Go figure...

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  • Shawn Witt
    Shawn Witt

    Well at lest they responded to you... If they would add this support I know the paragliding and paramotor industry would be all over this device. When you are around loud equipment having the side tone is very important... I currently working on re writing the firmware to allow for some type of side-tone... If I make any progress I will let you know...

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  • RBEmerson
    RBEmerson

    Best of luck and keep us posted.

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  • Roger
    Roger

    This is a safety issue. When someone is talking to me I need to be able to hear what they are saying, quickly, and without taking my helmet off.

    Right now, when someone speaks to me, my wife (or her own bike) can hear what they are saying via my microphone and she repeats it to me over the intercom. When she is not riding with me it becomes a major issue.

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  • Marc Woo
    Marc Woo

    We are supposed to release sidetone feature to SMH10 v5 along with universal intercom and advanced noise control.  

    Actually, it was not so difficult to add the sidetone feature, but we think it very sensitive since it may amplify the noise as well while conference intercom conversation.

    Anyway, we would like to ask you questions. When do you think we activate the sidetone feature?

    1) Only when intercom conversation

    2) Both phone call and intercom

    3) Always even stanby status

     

    Your feedback will help improve product quality. Thanks in advance for your great feedbacks.

     

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  • RBEmerson
    RBEmerson

    Keep sidetone working all the time but a) allow the user to disable at any time, and b) add a way to adjust mic gain.

    As was described above, part of the value of sidetone is to hear someone talking to the user while they're wearing a helmet. That means having the sidetone function working all the time

    Acknowledging that wind noise can be a problem, controlling mic gain and disabling the function altogether should help with the noise problem. Use the existing option selection tool to enable or disable the function and adjust mic gain.

    Finally, it's been a long wait for this function but now that it's on its way, I look forward to using it.

     

     

     

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  • Marc Brooks
    Marc Brooks

    I understand that having it on all the time would be bad.

    My suggestion is that we can turn it on in the Manager to be on/off for Phone, Intercom.

    For Standby the options would be always-on, or always-off or "triggered". I suggest that triggered would be when someone single-taps the jog-dial (like starting an intercom) at which point the side-tone would go live and stay live as long as there's no intercom connection made (e.g. nobody to talk to) PLUS at least 20 seconds after intercom doesn't connect.

    If the intercom connects, obviously side-tone would be on or off as set in the Manager.  ALSO make it possible (perhaps a triple-tap on the jog-dial) to turn on the side-tone until disabled with another triple-tap.

    This would be very useful so we could do the single-tap for a quick "what did you say" listen, or triple-tap for an extended conversation with a "civilian"

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  • Marc Woo
    Marc Woo

    Definitely, it must be optional. Users may activate/deactivate it by either software or configuration menu.

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  • Dennis J. Haggerty
    Dennis J. Haggerty

    Side tones were always on with my Autocom system. I never found that to be a problem. It was actually a good thing.

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  • Christian Aasland
    Christian Aasland

    I use the Sena with custom-molded earbuds which block 30+ dB. This makes it difficult to hear/understand other poeple when stopped for gas, paying tolls, etc. Therefore, my main use of this feature would be to turn it on when needed, when I am not actually on the intercom or riding, so that I can hear the environment around me. The sound would be picked up by the microphone and transmitted to the earbuds.

    I would appreciate a method to turn this feature on or off quickly, for example three taps on the phone button, and the amount to amplification would be determined with the jog dial.

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  • Christian Aasland
    Christian Aasland

    I would like to add that I think there's a way this can be implemented to make everyone happy.

    The basic concept is to feed sound from the microphone to speakers.

    There should be two modes:

    • Manual (default): The user must turn it on and off. As mentioned, this can be done with three taps on the phone button, and the jog dial to adjust volume. We should be able to turn this on and off at any time, i.e. whether we are on the phone, on the intercom, or when we just want to hear people around us.
    • Automatic: When in this mode, the sidetone will be turned on whenever a phone call or intercom session starts. (I'm not sure how to deal with the volume issue - as the jog dial would be used to adjust the volume of the call/intercom ... maybe a preset, or perhaps the Sena can detect the right level relative to the conversation).

    Changing between the two modes can be done via the software, or a sequence of button pushes / jog dial twists.

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  • RBEmerson
    RBEmerson
    Using the intercom function in Vox mode to get sidetone working doesn't do much for solo riders: no intercom connection to trigger sidetone. That's why user-selectable sidetone is the best bet.
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  • Roger
    Roger

    Side tone should be on for all conversations, intercom and phone.

    I would suggest that sidetone is on ALL THE TIME, when there is no active intercom or phone then the volume control sets the level of ambient noise from the microphone.

    This way every user can set the level of ambient noise to his own preference and can also quickly turn up the level if needed in an emergency.

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  • Christian Aasland
    Christian Aasland

    Hi Roger,

    It is ambiguous to control sidetone with the volume jog dial "all the time". During phone/intercom/gps/media the volume controls that. When there is no audio then the jog dial controls the volume of Sena prompts.

    Thus, there needs to be another way to control sidetone volume.

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  • Roger
    Roger

    Hi Christian:

    I believe side tone should be active at all times, but I would certainly be OK with the idea of 3 taps to enter the volume control mode.

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  • Christian Aasland
    Christian Aasland

    Hi Roger,

    The main reason I don't think it should be active all the time is that we'll have to constantly adjust the sidetone when we switch between different audio sources. For example, consider this scenario:

    1. Make a phone call. Adjust sidetone UP so that I can hear my own voice (and wind noise).
    2. End phone call. Listen to music. But I don't want to listen to wind noise via the sidetone, so then I'll have to turn the sidetone volume down.
    3. Receive an intercom call. Turn up the sidetone so I can hear my own voice.
    4. End the intercom, and resume listening to music. Adjust the sidetone down.

    See what I mean? We'll be constantly fiddling with changing the sidetone volume, because we don't want to be listening to wind noise when we're listening to music (or just riding in silence, for that matter). This can become VERY annoying for many people!

    However .. I figure .. maybe someone out there likes wind noise and their own signing / humming, maybe in addition to MANUAL and AUTOMATIC we need ALWAYS.

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  • Bryan Henry
    Bryan Henry

    Interesting comments, and glad to see it in the pipeline finally.  I would only want (and need) sidetone with phone, intercom and SR10 conversations. 

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  • Roger
    Roger

    Hi Christian

    The background is that my wife and I ride about 25,000 miles per year (she rides her own bike) and we spend much of the time (90%+) chatting on the intercom, I use molded earbuds, and I'm a bit deaf anyway, so apart from the intercom I cannot hear anyone unless they are up close and shouting.

    On several occasions I have stopped for lights / gas / tolls / roadworks etc and someone has been trying to get my attention, in once case a guy was shouting at me to alert me to the fact that a car was flying into a gas station and I was about to get hit, in all cases I hear virtually nothing. The only reason I wasn't hit by the car was that the guy doing the should was close to my wife and I heard someone shouting  (over the intercom) and looked around, if the intercom had been off then we would not be having this conversation.

    So I am coming at this from the safety angle. I have learned to live without sidetone on the intercom (although it will be MUCH better to have it) but not having side tone every time I stop is just dangerous.

    I understand your perspective, but from my point of view it needs to be on, all the time. As long as that is an option then I'm happy.

    I agree that the sidetone volume needs to be settable to suit the user and that setting need to be retained.

     

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  • Christian Aasland
    Christian Aasland

    Roger, that's exactly what my post on November 14, 2013 04:19 is about: the ability to hear your environment when you're not riding. Stop the bike, see that guy flapping his arms, tap three times and presto! you learn about a speeding truck instead assuming he's trying to fly. Back on the bike, tap three times, and no sidetone so you don't have to listen to the windnoise through the microphone.

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  • Robin Rumbolt
    Robin Rumbolt

    Sidetone doesn't have to be loud OR variable. My current comm helmet has a fixed level sidetone that I cannot adjust. It just has to feed just enough of my voice to my earphones for me to tell that my voice is being transmitted. That is all I need.

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  • RBEmerson
    RBEmerson
    Keep in mind that phones (cell, wired, wireless) keep the same level of sidetone for all calls. The main reason for twiddling the volume is to get it up to needed level (high sidetone volume is a distraction). Be very, very careful about adding too many options. That's the way to make using the SMH10 too complicated.

    Re: three taps to enable the intercom to deal with an emergency - let me politely and respectfully suggest re-thinking this idea. If things are getting sticky, remembering to do three taps on top of assessing what's going on...? And if one hand is grabbing the brakes while grabbing the clutch with the other rather limits options on doing those taps.

    Bottom line: KISS :-)
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  • Christian Aasland
    Christian Aasland

    I suspect that, unlike cell/wired/wireless phones, wind noise will vary with speed and thus there is often a need to adjust the call volume, and presumably the sidetone would also need to be adjusted. Maybe sidetone can just be a fixed percentage of whatever level the volume is at.

    I can appreciate keeping things simple, but if sidetone is on all the time, it defeats the point of wearing custom earbuds to block windnoise if the sidetone is just going to pipe that noise right into my ears anyway when I'm droning down the highway.

    I think we can all agree that it could be automatic when making calls or using the intercom. The question is - what about when listening to music, or not listening to anything at all? Is there a way to make the Sena smart enough to turn it on at low speeds and off at higher speeds? I'm thinking it would be too annoying to have a constant wind noise amplified through the speakers, so there has to be a way to turn it on and off.

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