A few months ago I purchased my first headset. Previously I had been borrowing a friend’s set of David Clarks. After countless hours of searching online for information and reviews I decided to go with Lightspeed Solo SSc. The specifications are as follows:
The QFR SOLO SSc has noise reduction rating (NRR) 25dB. Adjustable gain pre-amp allows for field ‘balancing’ of mic sensitivities. Includes cell phone interface, Confor-Foam ear seals and soft plush headpad, dual volume controls and stereo/mono selection switch. Features an electret microphone with windscreen. Weighs 14 oz., three year warranty. Imported. (From Sporty’s)
The headset arrived in a white box. Inside it was a headset bag, cell phone cable, and user guide. The first thing I noticed was how light they felt. Comparing them to the older set I was borrowing they were noticeably lighter. The build quality did seem a bit flimsier then the DCs but that is expected when you purchase something for half of the price. The cord is nice and long and not coiled/springy so it does not tangle as easily. There are two volume controls and a switch to select stereo or mono.
The ear cups are easy to adjust up and down and conform to your head. I noticed on my first few flights that the clamping force on my head was a bit too strong but that eventually got better. The microphone is very flexible and easy to move into position. One problem with the unit is the location of the headset cord. It comes directly out of the bottom of one of the ear cups. For me not being that tall (5’7″) I found it pokes me in the shoulder when I try to swivel my head around. While it isn’t that bad it is worse with the addition of jackets and winter clothes, still I can live with it. I had my friend who is a bit taller try them on and he doe not have any issues at all with shoulder clearance.
One of the neat features is the integrated cell phone connection. The jack is right on the wire about 1ft from the connectors. While I am still learning so much about flying I can’t imagine making phone calls while I am busy in the cockpit but it is nice knowing I have that ability. However the cable supplied does not work with my current Blackberry phone. I emailed customer service and was directed to bberry.com to purchase a 2.5mm adapter.
The performance in a word is excellent. I can hear my instructor even better then with the DCs and the overall ambient noise is much quieter. They are even comfortable on those hot days were sweat becomes a factor. Overall I am very happy with my purchase. For the money I would recommend them highly for students and even pilots. They feel great, sound great and are not very expensive.
Updated: Now that the weather is colder and I am wearing heavier clothing/pullovers I find the cord poking quite irritating. I decided to purchase a set of David Clark H10-13.4 and make the Lightspeeds my passenger headset. I still think they are the best value for money and an excellent sounding set.