DIY Motorcycle Sound System for Helmets. Connect to Phone, GPS, or Music Device

Introduction: DIY Motorcycle Sound System for Helmets. Connect to Phone, GPS, or Music Device

About: Nothing special. Yet ;)

Disclaimer: It is not recommended that you use this system while riding on your motorcycle.  It is more important to keep alert and be aware of your surroundings than to jam on down the road.  I only use this system when taking long trips and want immediate GPS feedback.  Additionally, Do Not Cut or Modify the internal structure of your helmet. This would prove to be unsafe.  Use an approved DOT or Snell Helmet if you plan on wearing one at all.

In helmet audio systems are expensive, proprietary to the manufacture, and cumbersome.Like this NCOM $300 (Amazon)  If you have an iPhone and a helmet with a comm system capabilities, then you can DIY and save time, money, and communicate with any biker.  Optional (write in a pair of headphones with a microphone and your can talk back directly.)  I use the Outdoor Tech ADAPT Bluetooth adapter instead. (Amazon)

You can connect the helmet headphones to the ADAPT and get a bluetooth connection to your phone; listen to music, get directions, and communicated because the ADAPT has a built in microphone.  The big buttons on the ADAPT help when wearing gloves. At bluetooth will give you a wire free connection.  In the future I plan on taking the  built in NCOM bay and installing the ADAPT directly in there.

Your helmet may need some modifications to do this, but mine did not, so I will show you exactly what I used and how simply it is to attach.  I used the soldering iron at TECHSHOP to repair and modify my headphone cable.  Some heads won't require this step.  So this was made at Techshop. 

What I used:

1. Pair of Koss Portapro headphones (Amazon)
2. Nolan N43E Trilogy Helmet (all newer Nolan helmets should have the same internal mounting system. (REVZILLA)
3. Soldering iron (used to repair my old headphones, may not be necessary for yours unless you need to take apart headphone cables for installation).
4. Tape (Gorilla Tape, Duck Tape, Gaffers Tape, something with good grip) I actually used White Medical tape.

The Koss Portapros have a lifetime warranty, so if somehow they break inside your helmet you can just send them back and get a new pair for $7.  Not to mention they have great base and sound fidelity for such small and flat headphones.

Step 1: Prep the Koss Porta Pros

I had to solder to fix my old portapros, but if your buying a new pair all you have to do is pull the headphones from their plastic brackets.

Now you have these blue headphones with foam, remove the foam and get ready to mount.

Step 2: Prep the Helmet

Remove the front visor and washable foam insert.  Get down to the black Styrofoam-looking core.

Step 3: Just Do It Nike Style

Pop in the Headphones to the existing sockets, Tape them down, and run the wires through the pre-existing wire channels designed for the Nolan NCOM system.  All wires will lead south to the base hole where the nolan NCOM's microphone extrudes from.  Pull the 1/8" connector out and reassemble the helmet.

And that's it.  Your done.  So Simple and why spend $300 for propriatory NCOM communications when you can get away with it for less than $80 (40 for koss, 40 for Adapt).

The 1/8" jack can plug in anywhere you want to the ADAPT and you've got it all.

Hope this was helpful. Please leave comments and alternatives for headphones and helmets below.

1 Person Made This Project!


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5 years ago

It's great to see how widespread Bluetooth intercom systems are these says. It certainly makes riding a lot more pleasant.


6 years ago

Anyone modify the bluetooth adapter to work with headphones in line mic? I have headphones with a chin mic but they don't work through these bluetooth adapters. And I don't want a bluetooth dongle in my helmet. But never the less a good write up.


8 years ago on Introduction

how is the quality and total volume of the audio? I have the Oneal Fastrack II and the volume is not great and the sound is all treble in a tin can. Looking to swap out the speakers or just add this to my adventure helmet.


Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

Koss porta pros are notorious for having a lot of bass normally, but I would say once you get rolling that extra bass gets subtracted and the sound is good and well rounded, at higher speeds or with a obnoxiously loud exhaust you would want to look into headphones with louder dB's. a lot of the motorcycle specific headphones are not actually louder than a normal $15 (cheap) set of headphones. They just narrow the output to be stronger in the high and mid frequencies so that the over all sound can pierce through the riding noise. (Less bass more power). It is for that reason that i said poopoo on buying a cycle brand of headphones (most are just not high quality). I also have a set of noise canceling headphones and if the headband ever goes on those, then wiring them into my helmet will come next. Hope that helps.