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View Full Version : Walkie-Talkie systems for lessons: what have people tried?



SnicklefritzG
Oct. 10, 2010, 05:45 PM
I tried posting this in the H/J forum but didn't get many responses, so I thought I'd try posting here.

My hearing is ok, but not stellar, so sometimes I have a hard time hearing my trainer. I know it's my hearing and not her voice that's the issue. It's more of a problem outdoors when there is more background noise to filter out.

What walkie-talkie systems have people tried that they've liked? Smart-Pak has something for around $300 or so, but I was hoping to find something very basic for under $200 considering all the other horsey stuff I need to buy in the next couple of months.

princessfluffybritches
Oct. 10, 2010, 06:09 PM
My trainer uses them and they are great. For groups and clinics she uses a microphone/earpiece and the speaker system.

alibi_18
Oct. 10, 2010, 06:20 PM
Got mines at wallmart, motorola, and they work really great! Don't remember the price but under 200$

SnicklefritzG
Oct. 10, 2010, 06:35 PM
Got mines at wallmart, motorola, and they work really great! Don't remember the price but under 200$

With those systems, I'm assuming that there is a setting that allows two people to talk back and forth without having to push any buttons?

Edit: What model do you have?

alibi_18
Oct. 10, 2010, 07:25 PM
The 'TalkAbout' 5428, the blue ones and with head sets that has mics on. (one that goes aroung the ear for the rider and the other more comfy that goes over the head.

And yes, there is that function for those

SnicklefritzG
Oct. 10, 2010, 07:39 PM
The 'TalkAbout' 5428, the blue ones and with head sets that has mics on. (one that goes aroung the ear for the rider and the other more comfy that goes over the head.

And yes, there is that function for those

looks like a nice and inexpensive option. Thanks again for the info. Only downside is now my trainer will be in my ear all the time when I make mistakes. :D

Jane Savoie
Oct. 11, 2010, 08:29 AM
I use Eponaire. They've been great!

KatherineC
Oct. 11, 2010, 08:48 AM
My trainer uses a Comtec. It is great. She is able to say more because she doesn't have to shout.

Also terrific at shows because you don't have to pick your trainer's voice out from all the others.

SillyHorse
Oct. 11, 2010, 09:27 AM
We used one for the first time in my lesson yesterday. I liked it very much. It's not two-way, but I didn't find that to be a problem. I'm planning to get my own ear pieces at Wal-Mart for about $20.

Velvet
Oct. 11, 2010, 11:49 AM
If you have an unlimited calling plan on your cellphone, just get a blue tooth headset and have your trainer call you from the side of the ring. Seriously, why buy something else when this will often do? Or, if you both have two new iPods and an open wireless source nearby, you could use those (and just don't bother with the camera).

walktrot
Oct. 11, 2010, 01:40 PM
We audited several private lessons with Jane Savioe (at another barn) and the system she uses seemed to be extremely effective.

Velvet
Oct. 11, 2010, 01:45 PM
We audited several private lessons with Jane Savioe (at another barn) and the system she uses seemed to be extremely effective.

That doesn't make any sense to me. If you were auditing, you would need to hear the lesson. It is not a PA system the OP is asking about, but rather a system where it's just the rider and instructor.

Also, you did not provide the name of the system. Is the OP supposed to contact Jane and try to blindly figure out the barn and the system (whether or not it's owned by JS)?

Gallop~on~Grant
Oct. 11, 2010, 01:47 PM
We got a louder instructor. We call her "ALL CAPS!"

BetterOffRed
Oct. 11, 2010, 10:31 PM
We got a louder instructor. We call her "ALL CAPS!"

ROFL!!!:lol::winkgrin::lol::winkgrin:

SBrentnall
Oct. 12, 2010, 11:38 PM
If you buy the type that clips onto your belt, make sure you examine the clip carefully. My old trainer had a comtec, which fastened really securely. My new trainer has a different make (can't remember which one) with a wire "paperclip"-type fastener and it's always flying off during lessons! I have to remember to wear a belt fastened super-tight to try and hold it on. It's a big PITA.

ideayoda
Oct. 13, 2010, 09:05 AM
Get a tunebelt....it keeps the transmitters from flying off.

AnotherRound
Oct. 13, 2010, 09:23 AM
We audited several private lessons with Jane Savioe (at another barn) and the system she uses seemed to be extremely effective.


Yeah, what's this supposed to mean?

I would think these one to one systems would be fantastick for schooling at a show. I am going to have to get one of these for my trainer and me. I truly can't hear her during lessons. She also talks to me while riding my horse, or ground training my horse, and I don't hear well if someone isn't facing me. This will be fantastic. Make a nice Xmas present for her, too.

But speaking of auditing lessons, I would imagine that some of these sets come with several earpieces? I will have to investigate that. We have some guest clinics coming up, and I also wonder if there is a way to record from such a system?

AnotherRound
Oct. 13, 2010, 09:32 AM
Oh - one more question from me - do these need to be voice operated transmission (VOX) in order to work hands free?

AnotherRound
Oct. 13, 2010, 09:45 AM
I found a selection to look at in one place (best buy) to review - here's the url (http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olstemplatemapper.jsp?_dyncharset=ISO-8859-1&_dynSessConf=-3823079018418834848&id=pcat17080&type=page&lcn=Office+Products&sc=phoneOfficeSP&st=processingtime%3A%3E1900-01-01&usc=abcat0800000&cp=1&sp=%2Bbrand+skuid&nrp=85&qp=crootcategoryid%23%23-1%23%23-1%7E%7Ecabcat0800000%23%230%23%231qp%7E%7Ecabcat08 04000%23%230%23%232j%7E%7Eq70726f63657373696e67746 96d653a3e313930302d30312d3031&add_to_pkg=false&pagetype=listing)and its sorted by brand name, so the accessories are all mixed in with this list.

It seems like some are voice activated, and some need you to push the button to talk. If a rider is to talk to the instructor, a voice activated system seems to be important, to me. Because I would want my trainer and I to converse sometimes, like when she is working on my horse, say ground training, and I am in the middle watching and we 'discuss' what she is doing, and then I try it myself, I think we will want a voice activated hands free type of thing.

AnotherRound
Oct. 13, 2010, 09:51 AM
Well here's an interesting bit of information (http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?guideID=1072288099473&type=page&id=cat12077). Two types of radios, one requires a liscence, another is very short range, family radio requiring no liscence, and there are hybrids of the two. Worth reading through to understand what you may be buying and what radio will have the features you want.

AnotherRound
Oct. 13, 2010, 10:01 AM
So including more than two people into your 'conversation', such as auditing a lesson between an instructor and student, is possible, if the auditors have radios which can tune into the same channel the lesson is using. I presume?

Using cell phones or ipods would be prohibitively expensive, I would think, unless you both had unlimited talk time.

The advantages of one of these radios on the farm would be cool - talking to barn workers far away, and since we ride in the state forest, having one with alot of range between the group out in the woods and someone back at the barn would be really good for safety.

Velvet
Oct. 13, 2010, 10:36 AM
Using cell phones or ipods would be prohibitively expensive, I would think, unless you both had unlimited talk time.


I already made the point that you would want unlimited talk time if you were going to use cellphones.

For the iPod, I'm guessing you don't have one and don't understand how they work, so that comment is moot. A new iPod 4th gen is not an iPhone. You only need a local WiFi connection. There's no service to buy, etc. You might want to research it before making those assumptions. I'd hate to have people miss out on something that works great and is FREE (w/ the exception of the WiFi and the iPod itself).

AnotherRound
Oct. 13, 2010, 10:38 AM
I'm having an excellent conversation with myself on this topic!

I think I have found one I might consider. Based on the reviews I have been reading, this Motorola MR350 (http://www.amazon.com/Motorola-MR350-35-Mile-22-Channel-Two-Way/product-reviews/B001UE6MJ8/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1)sounds like it would serve several purposes - in the ring, around the farm and maybe in the woods. I guess its around $50 to $75. Supposed to be very clear compared to other brands/models

The only other feature I might like to have might be waterproof, to give to one of our family members single-handing a sailboat. Well, just to take out with us on the sailboat, with the NOAA weather channels as well.

Having the privacy channel features would be key, I would think, if you wanted to converse with your studen/trainer at a show. Can you imagine all the radio traffic if you didn't have a privacy feature?

I think I will saunter on over to smartpak and find out what makes their radios so worth the $200.00 someone mentioned they are!

magienoire
Oct. 13, 2010, 09:09 PM
The barn I used to board at had the Comtek system. In addition to the clinician and the student, there was also a receiver unit attached to a speaker so that auditors could hear. Ours was one way so only the clinician could speak, but it was so nice to be able to just hear even if in the wind or whatever.