Zumo XT and Sena 30K is NOT a good match

Having Garmin zumo XT problems? there is loads of help and advice in this forum
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Joined: 28 Apr 2021 20:49

Zumo XT and Sena 30K is NOT a good match

Post by Snafky »

Hi All!

I'm looking for possible some advice but also a place to share my problems with a Sena 30K (v3.1.1) in combination with the Garmin XT (newest at time of writing 28-4-2021).
I cannot get away from Sena because my whole friend group uses the Mesh system of that brand (who doesn't like vender locking :( )

Standard way I used to connect it all is:
- XT <--bt--> Sena 30K
- XT <--bt--> Samsung Fold 2 Smartphone
- Sena 30K <--bt--> Samsung Fold 2 Smartphone.
Probably allot of you say I should not have the third connect with the Sena to the Phone but when i'm starting a phone call on the XT the phone is calling and some audio comes through on the SENA which goes over the XT.
I therefore also see that the Phone is putting its (Headset) audio/mic over the XT output and does not select the Sena.
For good measure I DID make a separate test where there was no connection from Sena to Phone resulting in the same problem i'm listing below and less chance of recovering because I have no dedicated pair from SENA to phone.
I must note that i connected to XT to the Sena using the "GPS connect" bluetooth connection option which makes it possible to hear my buddies AND gps instructions.
The SENA needs this because otherwise it probably doesn't know that it should mix that audio.

On the XT I a see "blue" connect for: Headset->Phone, A2DP->Phone , DriveConn-> AND Headset->Sena , A2DP->Sena
Problems i'm having are:
- Suddens disconnect of headset being Sena or Phone.
- Allot of clicks and choppy sound of GPS instructions sometimes even dropping whole instructions.
- if i play music ON the XT (mp3) the music plays and then after the first gps instruction sound the music hangs and chops and sometimes does not even recover at all
- Music from the XT to the SENA plays in "slow motion" with weird low sound and just allround crap.
- Starting a phone call on the XT does start the conversation but other person can barely hear me and I only hear again choppy sound.

The Phone calling is so bad on unreliable i cannot trust it when i'm on my bike.
The only way I can make it work is with removing features, or in other words disconnecting certain bluetooth connections from the phone.
What I did was
- Pro: Disconnect the "phone/headset" option ON THE SMARTPHONE toward the XT. With this you will lose the functions of phone calling and viewing who is calling. But the Sena gets the (dedicated) Headset connection to the phone.
- Pro: I lose allot (almost all) choppy and clicking sounds in the Sena headset.
- Pro: XT still has a "Garmin Drive" connection to the phone able to update traffic and weather
- Cons: Audio of the phone is played over the XT which is not handy when I want to use for instance google assist (this audio goes to the XT)
- Cons:"Garmin Drive" only connects when there is A2DP connection available, without that it won't connect, you can make a manual disconnect of the A2DP from Phone to XT and the "Garmin Drive" will still be connected but it's always a manual action.

I think the GPS connection type in combination with the XT gives the biggest problem.
Again, having the Sena only in connected to the XT does not fix the issue it locks me even more out to fix stuff on the fly.

If anyone has suggestions or idea's please let me know i'm happy to try something else.
If no one has a solution then that's also fine ;) then this is only a warning for anyone considering this combination of devices.
For now I have a setup where I can still hear my budies make a simple phonecall and hear navigation perhaps the other things were to much to ask for in 2021 with more then 700 euro's spend......

Please feel free to respond and thanks for the forum. CHEERS!

@Sena or @Garmin PLEASE MAKE YOUR EXPENSIVE GADGETS WORK AS ADVERTISED, otherwise don't sell the options.

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