Think Sena and Cardo are the only good motorcycle Bluetooth headset brands? Meet Fodsports, a brand that makes budget motorcycle Bluetooth headsets with robust features that can rival these two giants. Sounds like an exaggeration? Just check out our Fodsports FX8 review, where we will break down one of the best sub-$100 motorcycle Bluetooth headsets that can rival even the best from the Sena and Cardo headsets.
Fodsports FX8 Review – Main Features
In a hurry? Here are all the main features of the Fodsports FX8 to know about!
- Weighs 53g
- Bluetooth 4.1 technology
- Intercom support for 8 people
- 2 kilometers (1,24 miles) of range
- IP67 waterproof rating
- Built-in FM radio
- Noise cancellation
- 20 hours of phone time
- 15 hours of intercom time
- 300 hours of standby
Without further ado, let’s begin our Fodsports FX8 review!
Design & Installation
We are quite surprised at the build quality of the Fodsports FX8 Bluetooth headset, with its fairly pleasant rubberized texture. This headset is certainly not built from cheap plastic. It also feels very light at 53 grams.
We also like the button layout of this motorcycle Bluetooth headset, with its tactile and glove-friendly jog dial dominating the button scheme. Other than the jog dial, there is also the Function button in the middle, the + and – buttons on the top left, and the Intercom button on the top right. They all are easy to find and work pretty well, even with gloves.
Another addition is the small antenna located on the top of the headset. With it, you can increase the radio and intercom signal by 30% (that’s what Fodsports claims).
Let’s talk about the box contents. As you open up the fairly sturdy and well-made packaging of the Fodsports FX8 Bluetooth motorcycle headset, you will see:
- Metal mounting clip
- Adhesive pads
- Microphone extender cable
- USB cable
- Foam and sticky pads
- Wired microphone
- Boom microphone
- Two 40mm speakers
Now, there are two ways to mount this headset on your full-face helmet or any other motorcycle helmet type. You can use the adhesive mounting brackets or the metal mount. We found that the metal clip doesn’t feel pretty strong, so we were less confident to use it.
Mounting it with the adhesive mount should do the job fine. Just make sure you leave it for 24 hours after sticking it to the helmet. You can remove the headset from the mount by simply pressing the button on the mount.
Overall, the Fodsports FX8 Bluetooth headset is fairly simple to install. Still, we don’t fully trust the quality of the metal mounting clip.
As we continue our Fodsports FX8 review, let’s talk a bit about its Bluetooth connectivity. The device is powered by Bluetooth 4.1 technology, making it compatible with almost any Bluetooth-enabled device. Of course, the most popular Bluetooth devices to pair with the FX8 will be your smartphone and other headsets. Let’s see how easy do they connect!
Before we delve into the specific procedure, keep in mind that you cannot use the intercom and phone GPS simultaneously. With that clear, here is how to pair the Fodsports FX8 Bluetooth headset with a smartphone:
- When the headset is on, press the Function button for 5 seconds until you see the red and blue lights flashing, which triggers the Pairing mode.
- Find the “FODSPORTS FX8” on your smartphone’s Bluetooth settings, and connect to the headset.
You can pair the Fodsports FX8 with seven other headsets, meaning that 8 participants can be in one Bluetooth intercom session. Keep in mind that you will get the best connectivity with Fodsports devices, as universal intercom could be much easier due to the need to connect a few times until you get it right.
With that in mind, here is a specific procedure to connect the FX8 Bluetooth intercom with other headsets:
- Enter into Search mode with your FX8 headset by pressing the Intercom button for 5 seconds.
- Red and blue lights will flash, indicating that you’ve triggered the Search mode.
- Now, enter into the pairing mode on the other headset to pair the two devices.
You can follow the procedure above in a chain until you don’t reach the limit of 8 headsets.
As we told you in the above section, you can connect up to a maximum of 8 riders in the FX8 intercom session. This makes the Fodsports FX8 headset quite suitable for group rides. How does its intercom range hold up?
Like its sibling M1S Pro, the Fodsports FX8 has a maximum range of 2 kilometers (1,24 miles). Basically, you get 500 meters (0,3 miles) of an effective talking distance between two riders. When you consider the price of the FX8, these are some surprisingly good numbers.
Check out our Fodsports M1S Pro review for another awesome budget Bluetooth headset!
Do these numbers work in theory? Yes, but with a catch. The signal will falter dramatically if you break the line of sight with your riding buddies. Also, the signal will be weaker if there are some disruptions, like a lush forest, steep hills, buildings, or congested traffic.
As we continue our Fodsports FX8 review, we must say we’re pretty impressed with the sound quality of this motorcycle Bluetooth headset. Yes, the two 40mm speakers are hard-wired into the mount, which is inconvenient if the speakers or the wire ever break, but the speakers are much louder than what we expected.
We can describe the speaker’s sound as loud, with good clarity and a decent amount of bass. They are actually so loud that you’ll need to turn the volume down a bit. Well, that’s better than being too silent for sure!
Another thing of note is the CVC noise suppression technology. This chip ensures the FX8 will produce a clear sound up to 120 km/h (75 mph).
Like other Fodsports headsets, there is sadly no dedicated system voice commands integration in the FX8 headset. But, you can use the voice prompts from your smartphone when you pair to it.
Looking for more Fodsports headset reviews? Check out our Fodsports headsets section to find out more about this promising brand!
Just say Hello Siri/Google, and you’ll open a wide range of opportunities, from calling your contacts and playing music to asking for GPS directions to the nearest gas station or supermarket.
Keep in mind that the voice prompts will interfere with your music, but the music will continue playing automatically once the voice prompt is over.
Here are some of the additional features of the Fodsports FX8 Bluetooth headset.
Mainly as a standard feature for most Bluetooth headsets, the FM radio on the Fodsports FX8 is a pretty common ordeal. We find it nice that the antenna increases its overall signal, which brings the tough-to-reach radio frequencies closer to the FX8 headset.
Water Resistant or Waterproof?
Fodsports are well-known for making their Bluetooth headsets waterproof, a thing that sets them apart even from industry favorites like Sena. The FX8 is fully waterproof, with an IP67 waterproof rating.
This means the silicon material and all the sealings will prevent rainwater from disrupting the operation of the FX8 Bluetooth headset. We love this feature, and it just adds up to the overall longevity of this headset.
Another thing we really like with the Fodsports FX8 headset is its battery life. Its 900 mAh battery can withstand:
- 20 hours of phone time
- 15 hours of intercom time
- 300 hours of standby time
Once the battery discharges, you can charge it in 3 hours. You can charge it on the go too!
For all the amazing features it brings to the table, you must think the Fodsports FX8 comes at a high price. Well, you are in for a surprise, as the single pack of this robust Bluetooth headset costs $92/€76/£65, while the dual pack costs $181/€150/£128. This is quite a bargain for all those looking for a high-quality, mid-range motorcycle Bluetooth headset!
As we reach the end of our Fodsports FX8 review, what’s our final verdict on this attractive Bluetooth headset?
We were a bit skeptical of it at first due to its low price. But, like the M1S Pro, we were pleasantly surprised by the FX8’s superior build quality that can even withstand rainstorms. The overall design of the headset is also well-made, with the only gripe being the hard-wired speakers, which may increase costs if you need to replace the speakers.
We are surprised at the long battery life it provides at a full charge, and the intercom range is one of the best in this price range. Yes, there may be no voice commands for the system alone, but that is compensated with an intuitive button control scheme and smartphone voice commands. Also, the sound is an obvious improvement over the older Fodsports headsets.
Overall, the Fodsports FX8 takes the crown for being the best headset from the manufacturer if you want the highest intercom range, along with the robust set of features. All that for under $100. Hard to imagine, but very much attainable.
Looking for more Bluetooth headsets? Check out our Bluetooth headsets review section!