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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Consumer Hardware & Components > iPods and motorcycles?

iPods and motorcycles?
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Drakino
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May 9, 2004, 03:54 PM
 
Just wondering how many people here have used their iPods on a motorcycle, and what they thought of the experience. I've heard some hard drives don't get along well with the vibrations such a ride can bring to the device. If I buy a portable player, it will be used mostly on a motorcycle ride, and not many other places.
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d4nth3m4n
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May 9, 2004, 05:37 PM
 
is that legal? i ride my bmx with my ipod all the time. thats pretty bumpy. no problems.
     
jeffnudi
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May 9, 2004, 06:09 PM
 
I belong to an H-D discussion board on About.com. There are a couple of threads there about mp3 players, and the iPod seems to be a favorite for the H-D. I have not bought an iPod yet, but I am considering one. I ride a Harley-Davidson Electra Glide Classic. The radio has an input jack which will allow the iPod to be played through the bikes speakers.
     
WSKCONDOR
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May 9, 2004, 06:30 PM
 
I use a 20GB iPod (and a 5GB one before that) on both a sportster and a V-Rod. Works fine, BUT I never hard mounted it to the bike. I just put it in my pocket. The body absorbs a lot of the vibration (and there is a LOT of it on the Sportster especially) so I don't know how it would fare if you planned to mount it to handlebars or something.
I CAN say that I have had some problems with a Gramin GPS unit mounted to the handlebars, and I think it was vibration related (and there's no hard drive in there). So at least speaking from a HD rider point of view, the vibration environment is a bit hostile. My guess is that an iPod would not be happy hard mounted there.
     
nick_coday
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May 9, 2004, 06:54 PM
 
That would be very dangerous I think; especially for in-city riding. You need to be able to hear what is going on around you.

However, for long distance riding on the hiway, I guess it would be ok, but still not advisable I think
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Rev-O
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May 9, 2004, 10:44 PM
 
Originally posted by nick_coday:
That would be very dangerous I think; especially for in-city riding. You need to be able to hear what is going on around you.

However, for long distance riding on the hiway, I guess it would be ok, but still not advisable I think
Agreed. At some point being absorbed in your music may equate to being adsorbed to a 4-wheeled idiots bumper.

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jamez bond
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May 11, 2004, 03:43 PM
 
ah, rubbish...
Get one and use it on your bike. No problems.

I have been riding bikes for...uhm, a long time. I have worked as a motorcycle dispatch, trawling through traffic all day with lots of music. No problem. Just use your eyes...

For connecting this up and get the sound, I would go for an intercom system that you can fit in your helmet. Get one that has input for your portable player (usually a minijack input) and both you and your lovely girlfriend on the back can enjoy talking to each other (the music will fade down when you are talking on the intercom system), and listening to great music.

Have done it and recommend it to others....
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Freeflyer
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May 13, 2004, 10:00 AM
 
Ex dispatch rider here. Rode for years with a casette walkman in my jacket pocket. No problems, just be aware of what's around you. I tended to use it mainly on long distance, as removing cables in town every time I took the helmet off to go into an office became a hassle. Plus, I had the radio on my shoulder that I needed to hear.

For long distance, it was a lifesaver, hours and hours of boring motorway that passed more quickly.

Just a warning though, don't ever ride up to an armed soldier at a border crossing in the winter, at 4am with the player inside all your layers of clothing and then shove your hand into your jacket as he's talking to you (you can't hear him) to try and turn it off.

Just don't.

And don't ask. I was stupid.

J.
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tooki
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May 13, 2004, 11:44 AM
 
Well, around here, they WILL ticket you for controlling any vehicle in the streets with headphones on.

Besides, it's dangerous to you AND others. How would you feel if you hit a pedestrian?

Unless your motorcycle has speakers, don't use the iPod when riding.

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jamez bond
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May 13, 2004, 12:54 PM
 
erm...so you are going to hear the pedestrian coming tooki?
Do you ride a bike...have you ever?

Come on good people, do we need to be this overprotected?
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Powaqqatsi
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May 13, 2004, 01:23 PM
 
Originally posted by jamez bond:
erm...so you are going to hear the pedestrian coming tooki?
Do you ride a bike...have you ever?

Come on good people, do we need to be this overprotected?
Exactly. After years and years of using my bicycle to go to school I know that I don't use the trafficsound to make my way through traffic safely. If you use your eyes, you don't need the sound. And on a motorbike, you have a lot of noise comming from the bike itself so you don't hear traffic anyway. And for a car it's the same. If I'm in my car, I don't hear too much of the traffic that's for sure.
     
Thorin
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May 13, 2004, 03:11 PM
 
I know that I find myself slightly disorientated as a pedestrian when using my ipod, and I've had a couple of near misses which I don't think would have happened if I hadn't been listening to it.

As far as bike's go though, I know my Dad, who rides a V-Rod found that he got mild tinnitus when he first started riding it, and had to ride it with ear plugs until he got a better helmet with more sound insulation, so I don't imagine that having music piped through an intercom system, or wearing headphones, would make much difference at all. Just my two pence though - I don't ride a bike myself.
     
talisker
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May 14, 2004, 12:40 AM
 
I don't ride a motorbike, but while I would never wear headphones whilst riding a bicycle, I would imagine a motorbike is a completely different kettle of fish. i.e. it's noisy to start with, so headphones won't make much difference to what you can hear. And as has been pointed out, you wouldn't have to wear headphones, just pipe it into an intercom system in the helmet.
     
Freeflyer
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May 14, 2004, 01:53 AM
 
The earplugs question is valid. I always ride with earplugs in (you should too), and find that I can hear the headphones in my helmet just fine. I don't have them turned up high enough to deafen me, just to give me some background music on a long ride.

The question about whether headphones distract you from riding, or that the cops will ticket you for it requires some additional explanation. I don't have music on when I ride in town, I find I use the audio cues to pick up on things. As for them being more dangerous and should be banned well, explain to me, in simple words, just how I am more distracted that someone listening to the radio in their car. Tell me how they are listening to the sounds outside, in their nicely insulated, double glazed mercedes with their 10 speaker stereo. If they hit a pedestrian is it ok whereas if I hit one listening to the stereo it's not. I'd feel shitty if I hit anyone. A crash helmet insulates you from the sound around you, lets not wear them at all. Let's get rid of windows and roofs in cars. Better yet, lets all go back to horses.

It's a facile argument. You decide how much notice you take of the outside world. From my 20 years of riding bikes, I know that, as a rule, bikers take more notice of what's around them than any other road users except cyclists. Why?, because it fuXXing hurts when you get clobbered by the muppet in a volvo who isn't thinking about what he's doing and turns right across the traffic without looking (Trust me, this hurts). It's called risk compensation, the less you can hurt yourself, the less care you take to not get hurt.

You could cut motoring accident rates by 99% overnight by making it law to fit a 12" steel spike to the middle of your steering wheel. Bet they won't implement that though.

J.
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Freeflyer
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May 14, 2004, 01:57 AM
 
double post. sorry
( Last edited by Freeflyer; May 14, 2004 at 02:14 AM. )
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