The Sena 50R intercom is the brand’s state-of-the-art communication system and is the device that aims to change the rules of the game.
If you don’t know me yet, let me introduce myself. I’m Filippo from motorbikeintercom.com, a motorcycle enthusiast and expert of bluetooth intercoms, and in these last weeks I had the pleasure to test this device .
By reading this review, you will find out what are the features, the differences with similar products and the link to buy the product at the best price.
If at the end of the article you have any doubts, please leave a comment and I will try to get back to you as soon as possible.
Are you ready to test the Sena 50R with me? Well, fasten your helmet, let’s go!
Sena 50R: review
Thanks to several software and hardware upgrades, the new Sena 50S and 50R devices have boldly made their way into the world of motorcycle intercoms.
Both feature two very important new additions: HD speakers and the new Mesh 2.0 software, which offers users a much more stable platform for communicating in intercom mode.
Today we will focus on the 50R, the more elegant of the two units thanks to its four-button interface.
This intercom is sold at a slightly cheaper price than its big brother 30K, making it a direct competitor to the two high-end Cardo Packtalk Bold devices.
Why choose Sena 50R
The Sena 50R intercom, leading on the list of devices produced by the American manufacturer, represents a technological leap forward.
Sena 50R thanks to the bluetooth 5.0 technology and the upgrade of Mesh technology now version 2.0, is capable of transferring data at almost double speed between intercoms even in unfavorable external conditions and can consume less energy while having a greater range with a conversation 4 times more stable and clear.
Mesh 2.0 is available for the whole 50 series and the Sena 30K.
With 50R you have 3 communication modes available:
- Bluetooth Intercom
- Group Mesh intercom
- Multi-Channel Open Mesh Intercom
Bluetooth Intercom is the classic Bluetooth communication between 2-4 people, with Group Mesh Intercom you can set up a private group of up to 24 participants within a 8 km radius.
While with the new Multi-Channel Open Mesh you can tune into 9 different channels and talk to different groups within the larger Group Mesh.
Last but not least, the new and redesigned HD earphones are included in the package, with more powerful and crisper sound.
The Sena 50R stands out from the 50S for design, in fact the latter still has the jog dial while the 50R has the most simple and user-friendly 3 keys.
Finally, please note that in addition to having all the classic features that a high-end intercom must have (music sharing, connection to phone and GPS, call management, etc.) the new 50R can be operated by voice commands (available in 8 languages) and you just need to say “hey Siri” or “ok Google” to receive help from your favorite voice assistant.
P.S. The 50R comes with the WiFi Adapter which offers the dual function of charging and automatic firmware update to the latest version. So you can forget about having to update. Not bad!
What you will find in the package
Inside the package you will find:
- 1 50R control unit
- 1 universal kit with helmet clamp attachment
- 1 boom microphone
- 1 wired microphone
- 1 USB cable for charging and updating
- stickers for helmet mounting
- earphone pads
- earphone straps
- microphone foams
- microphone holders
- WiFi Adapter
The range is impressive, about 8km in Multi-Channel Open Mesh (minimum 6 users at 1.6km distance from each other) and 2 km in Bluetooth Intercom mode.
A very remarkable operating range that make this high-end product one of the best available.
Mesh 2.0 Technology
One of the major changes in this product is the Mesh 2.0 system, which connects multiple riders at once.
What is this Mesh 2.0?
Basically this is a brand new firmware update designed for the 50 series and the Sena 30K.
Mesh 2.0 means you have a multi-channel open mesh communication capability, as well as improved performance and stability, which means you can communicate with an almost unlimited number of people.
As I mentioned earlier, the Sena 50R bluetooth earpiece offers three ways of communicating:
- The usual bluetooth technology that allows you to communicate with 2-4 people.
- The private Mesh mode that allows you to communicate with a minimum of 2 and a maximum of 24 people.
- Third, (which is a huge step forward for Sena) is the open mesh intercom setting that allows you to communicate with anyone within range who is also on the same network.
When you choose the latter mode, you will benefit from 9 frequencies so you can switch between conversation groups while driving.
Lastly, Sena has also added the option of connecting other users within the network, but the system has problems when you add more than one person.
Current owners of Sena 30K, Momentum EVO and + Mesh intercoms can upgrade their devices for free with Mesh 2.0 firmware.
The Sena 50R’s sound quality has improved over its earlier models, and the new earpieces provide up to 60% increased volume compared to its predecessors.
HD 50R speakers give you more powerful bass and reduced distortion.
At regular speed, both communications and music playback are consistent.
You can increase these already very good qualities, using a well soundproofed helmet and proper aerodynamic protection.
Sena 50R battery life is about 13 hours of bluetooth intercom use and 8 hours of mesh intercom use.
To fully recharge it, it takes 1 hour, while in just 20 minutes of charging time you get 6 hours of bluetooth conversation and 3.5 hours in mesh mode.
Main features and functions
- Audio quality: excellent up to 130 km/h
- Communication range: 2000m (bluetooth) or 8km (mesh)
- Number of connected users: 2 to 4 with Bluetooth, 2 to potentially infinite with Mesh
- Communication type: one-to-one intercom and conference
- Battery life: maximum up to 13 hours of use
- Charge time: 1 hour
- Universal Intercom: yes
- Radio FM: yes
- Music sharing: yes
- Automatic volume control : yes
- Voice control: yes
- Helmet compatibility: universal
- Waterproof: yes
Pros & Cons
- Voice controls
- Mesh 2.0
- Automatic frimware update
- Not particularly cheap
Sena 50R vs 50S
The main difference between the Sena 50R and 50S is the operation by using the control buttons on the 50R and a dial on the 50S.
Also, the 50S has a slightly greater battery life, which gives you an extra hour of Bluetooth and Mesh talk time.
Both devices use Bluetooth 5.0 technology (used to wirelessly pair your smartphone or GPS) and Sena’s patented Mesh 2.0 communication software.
Here is a chart with the main similarities and differences between the two Bluetooth intercoms.
|Sena 50R||Sena 50S|
|2.0 Mesh System||2.0 Mesh System|
|Mesh Intercom: provides superior sound quality||Mesh Intercom: provides superior sound quality|
|The multi-channel protocol in Open mesh gives users the option to switch between 9 different communication channels|
|5.0 Bluetooth technology||5.0 Bluetooth technology|
|Re-engineered HD speakers optimized for high performance in volume, bass power and clarity||Re-engineered HD speakers optimized for high performance in volume, bass power and clarity|
|Access to voice-activated virtual assistant (“Hey Google” / “Hey Siri”)||Access to voice-activated virtual assistant (“Hey Google” / “Hey Siri”)|
|30% faster charging||30% faster charging|
|Included WiFi adapter that automatically downloads and installs firmware updates||Included WiFi adapter that automatically downloads and installs firmware updates|
|Sleek three-button interface that is also suitable for winter gloves||Sleek three-button interface that is also suitable for winter gloves|
|Voice commands||Multilingual Voice commands|
|Bluetooth intercom: 4 riders||Bluetooth intercom: 4 riders|
|Open Mesh Intercom: unlimited||Open Mesh Intercom: unlimited|
|Group Mesh Intercom: 24 bikers||Group Mesh Intercom: 24 bikers|
Who is this product designed for?
The 50R is right for you if you are looking for the ultimate technology available on an intercom, with voice commands, Mesh 2.0, design and top-notch manufacturing.
It has almost everything, the only flaw is its price, as it is expected from a high-end product it is not very favorable, but the quality is worth the price and here there is a lot of it.
We recommend it especially to those who like to travel in group.