Headsets

Sidetone in aviation headsets: what is it and how does it work?

Pilots like to hear themselves talk. Well, at least my wife says we do. This is especially true when transmitting radio communications. This is known as sidetone. When we press the push-to-talk (PTT) switch, not only does the world get to hear my amazingly professional voice, I get to hear it too. You won’t find sidetone on cell phones or gaming headsets, but it’s common, if not expected, in aviation.

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Top 4 Passive Aviation Headsets for Student Pilots

When looking at student pilot headsets, the first thing to consider is your budget. The saying, “You get what you pay for” is pretty accurate when it comes to aviation headsets. Many student pilots are on a tight budget. This has them looking towards less expensive passive headsets. Most pilots will start out with one of these headsets, then graduate to an active noise canceling headset once they get their license. Their original passive headset then becomes a passenger headset.

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Lightspeed Aviation Headset Comparison - Sierra vs. Zulu 3

Based near Portland, Oregon, Lightspeed Aviation is a company deeply rooted in the aviation industry. They are well known for providing great pilot headsets at a good value, backed by a friendly support team. The premium Zulu 3 and budget-friendly Sierra have become top choices for pilots of all ratings.

You might ask yourself, “Besides $200, what’s the difference between the two?”

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What's the best headset for pilots?

At the top end of the market, three headsets dominate: the Bose A20, the David Clark ONE-X, and the Lightspeed Zulu 3. All three are great ANR headsets that will serve any pilot well for many years, but there are important differences. Here’s a look at each one, with comments from our team of pilots and from our customers.

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David Clark passive headsets - how to choose the right one

The famous green domes of David Clark headsets have been around longer than most of us have been flying, with a legendary reputation for durability. A little known fact is that David Clark started in aerospace by making high altitude spacesuits for the military. Communication became part of the suits, so speakers and microphones were developed. David Clark made their first pilot headset in 1975 and quickly became a mainstay in cockpits around the world.

 

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TSO'd aviation headsets—what does it mean?

When going through the plethora of data available about aviation headsets, you will inevitably come across the abbreviation TSO. This stands for Technical Standard Order and it is the FAA’s way of saying an item is approved for use on an airplane. Why does that matter? We'll explain.

 

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