When you are riding your motorcycle, the last thing you want is to lose your communication suddenly during the ride. That is why having an intercom system is highly important – and we will review one of these systems, the Lexin LX-FT4.
The motorcycle world is definitely increasing in popularity, as more people choose it as a means of transportation over a car. The demand is not unnoticed by manufacturers either; so many of them are coming up with designs that ensure the bikers’ life is easier and they can enjoy riding their bikes more often.
One of these improvements is the incorporation of the Intercom system, which ensures that you do not lose communication at any time, while remaining simple to use. There are numerous models of these systems in the market, but you do not want to spend your money on a system you regret, making it important to do plenty of research into the types and see what works for you.
What can you expect from the Lexin LX-FT4?
The company behind Lexin has its headquarters in Costa Mesa, CA; and they are recent entrants in the motorcycle helmet scene, with their founding going back to 2006. They were initially a manufacturer of car audio systems (particularly OEM), but they eventually entered the market for motorcycle electronics in 2010. Today, they have diversified their portfolio, and manufacture a variety of carrying cases and speaker systems for motorcycles, in addition to the Bluetooth systems.
The LX-FT4 is among their recent developments, and it comprises an intercom system that has advanced features to handle noise cancellation, as well as allowing communication, with an advertised range of 1.2 miles.
The primary purpose of the headset’s design according to the manufacturer, was to maintain a user-friendly and simple set of controls. It is meant to promote longer battery life as well as improvements in sound quality. To aid in this goal, it has speakers of high quality and water-resistant features. You can also upgrade the firmware easily if you need to, thanks to the official website that you can access and download updates in a few minutes.
Key features of Lexin LX-FT4
Quality of the speakers and microphone
With an in-helmet environment, this is among the hardest areas to win for manufacturers – in fact, our previous experience shows that wind speeds exceeding 70 to 75 Mph will drown out plenty of headset speakers, depending on how1 quiet the helmet is. Unfortunately, the same case applies with the LX-FT4 as well.
In the case of its speakers, they are definitely not Bose-quality, neither do they include ambient noise-cancelling technology to handle wind noise and standard helmet noise. The result here is that the speakers sound like they have very little bass content when you listen to music, instead having a tinny effect, and they do not handle voice conversation from other riders very well.
On the other hand, the microphone quality is great, even though the sound quality is low. Its main advantage is its flexible arm, which makes it excellent to use because it is smooth enough to manipulate, and the white label on its side will easily remind you which direction should go towards your mouth and away from the wind.
There is a silver lining here, though – the speakers still have the closest audio quality that the premium intercom systems have, yet the FT4 comes at a lower price. In our books, that is still a win.
Wind pickup and noise
When it comes to the wind noise aspect, we were quite impressed with this sound system – it never picked up wind noises, even if we used it at highway speeds with the raising of the chin bar. It has a tendency of distorting speech when you are talking with a person that usually speaks loudly into a microphone, so that is a negative point. However, that does not take away from the experience, and is even more impressive when considering the affordable price this comes in.
While the company advertises the range as 1.2 miles (slightly less than 2km), we unfortunately do not get that during the testing. Its best performance usually happens when pairing two Lexin devices while maintaining a clear line of sight between them, and the resulting range goes to a maximum of 3279 feet (1km). Anything more than that, and there was quite some interference occurring.
While you are in the range of sight though, you can still hear the other person using the system even if there are some obstructions. That means that it is paramount to maintain a clear sight line when using it, in order to guarantee top communication.
The FT4 only has three controls, which is the most frustrating aspect about it. This forces you to use different buttons simultaneously, or separately, in order to access a variety of features. With that said, user friendliness is great here, and you can check their website to access the manual.
The buttons themselves have a crisp feel when they work properly, but you can accidentally press the ‘jog dial’ button easily, which results in dropped calls or pausing your music.
- Very durable and strong build
- Easy installation and use
- Affordable, especially in comparison to the competition
- Includes a great combo kit, as well as RAM X-Grip mounting
- Long battery life and warranty
- Fast recharge time
- The speakers and microphone sound quality are disappointing
- Tends to have accidental button actuation
- The range is not as advertised
- Lacks a voice command system
The Lexin LX-FT4 is relatively easy to use, strong in design, and inexpensive – making it a great choice to cater to the needs of any rider; especially when you need to piper GPS instructions, phone calls, and listen to music while wearing the helmet. The sound quality is slightly more ‘treble-heavy’ compared to other devices, buy the microphone can struggle with picking up the voice sound clearly. That said, the system does what it needs to, and is versatile enough to cater to most of your needs, if not all.