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Help ! it is time to add some tunes to the R12RT


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I have a 2005 R1200RT. No radio. Sometimes I think it would be nice to have some music. Ride two up most of the time. I have a ipod but those ear speakers hurt and are a pain to keep in place when puting on a helmet{ Nolan N-102} I not sure that we are ready for Helmet speakers. All those wires hook to you. Wonder how well they work ? Should I get a XM radio? can I get speakers put in the dash that work good enough that @ 75mph we can hear and sounds like something ? Autocom ? don't know how well that will work . I sure need some help getting something that works and don't need 3 years of night school to understand it. confused.gif

Thanks , Mike . I guess pictures would help also.

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There are several ways to go but most seem to settle on in-ear phones such as the Etymotics ER6i or the Arizona Al custom plugs. Either of these are easy to wear and will not interfere with most helmets. Speakers flat don't work at highway speeds, and that's not just a BMW thing. I test rode a new Goldwing with the premium sound system and while it had plenty of power to be heard at just about any speed the fidelty was terrible due to extraneous noise. Good, isolating (very important for hearing protection) earphones provide excellent fidelity at relatively low cost.


MP3 players and satellite radio each have their own advantages and it's purely a personal preference thing. There was a recent thread (of course) on this tipic so I won't start another discussion here. Or, it's pretty easy to install both and have the best of both worlds.

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Hi Mike.. wave.gif


Since you stated that you ride 2-up a lot of the time, I will base my reply on that fact. I ride 2-up probably 60% of the time now.


First, about in-dash speakers. I do not believe you will like the results, and I know the pillion won't. Too much noise at road speeds for that set up to be of much use.


I believe, after all is said and done, for you to have a useful system to use for the life of your bike you should go with a quality intercom system...ala Autocom, Baehr, Starcom, what's the one Knappy wrote about?....Air Comm or something?


If you just were to go with in dash speakers you will lose out on a the wonderful ability to talk back and forth while you are 2-up. To Barb and I, this is the most useful feature of an intercom system, even above the ability to hear the iPod.

You can talk of the ride as it happens, not just every 2 hours when you dismount for gas, etc.


You will find the pillion really gets into the ride, along with you, as you can related back-and-forth in real time.


Also, as I am color blind ooo.gif, Barb sees the brown color of the deer against backround colors MUCH better than I, and gives me a "Deer-right" or "Deer-left" right now!! thumbsup.gif


As far as what device to use in the helmet to hear intercom output, that is a matter of choice. If you use ear plugs now (you DO, don't you? wink.gif), some go with custom molded ear plug speakers...these work great, we have a set.....Arizona Al is the man to talk to in this regard.

Some also use helmet speakers...and they work too, you just have to crank the intercom output to blast through the ear plugs I know you will use while riding (you DO use hearing protection, right wink.gif?). We have speakers in our helmet as well, and I generally use them for short rides.


Another advantage to an intercom system is in it's expandability. You can add radar detector inputs, GPS inputs, cell phone input, ....etc.


So I guess you can tell my opinion on the subject. We love our intercom. Technically an integrator/intercom I suppose.


These generalities should give you an idea of what WE like. If you would like, at a later time I can respond with details of the set-ups and particulars of the system we have. That might be better left to PM's between us.


Good luck on your mission! thumbsup.gif

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Lots of alternatives, dependent on price, requirements etc.



Ipod Mini ( 6 GB - 7 days of music )

Griffin iFM ( provides a handy remote, AND FM stereo )

Griffin Car charger

Powerlet tankbag electrification and cig lighter adapter

Entymotic ER-6i in-ear phones


I keep the iFM in the map pocket of my tankbag, and I can work most of the switches through the window while keeping it dry and safe. I keep the iPOD in that tankbag proper, plugged into the car charger, which is itself plugged into the Powerlet tank electrification cables.


The Entymotics are way better than the regular earphones you see around, and provide sound isolation similar to -30db ear plugs when not powered up.


Best part, the whole thing comes into the hotel with me when touring.


Good luck!

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I've got an XM MyFi in the tank bag, plugged into an Autocom intercom. Just did 1100 miles 2-up over the weekend, with music all the way. And the intercom allows us to chat. Works great, IMHO.

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I'm using custom molded ear buds (West Tone 2-way) provided by "Big Ear" and a60 gig I-pod in the tank bag. FANTASTIC. The ear buds are supper comfortable, the best sound isolation and real Hi-Fi at 80mph, I use full size music files on the I-Pod so I can only fit 60 hours of high quality recordings on it. Had all the radio / cd crap on the LT. Don't miss it a bit. Good luck, enjoy the ride.



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The folks recommending the earbuds seem to have this figured out. I've got a Starcom intercom with speakers mounted in the helmets. If we ride at highway speeds, earplugs are absolutely necessary, but force us to turn the volume up quite a bit. Conversation is OK, but music is so distorted that it's out of the question. I plan on taking the advice of the previous writers and incorporate some Etymotic phones. Some music would sure be nice on those longer rides. Now, the dream solution is a quiet helmet with Bluetooth wireless communication! I'll take two please.

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