Plane & Pilot
Saturday, December 1, 2007

Buyer’s Guide: The Active Pilot’s Flight Bag

Consider one of these exciting new products

garmin gpsFlight bags have certainly changed over the years, but what has changed most is what today’s pilots consider “must have.” My first flight bag was a military flying suit with pockets everywhere, each stuffed with some necessity.
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Peltor 7000 Pro Headset: The new Peltor Pro 7000 offers a professional-quality set at entry-level costs. New Peltor gel air seals make these headsets comfortable and quiet in the nosiest cockpits. There’s a single dual-action volume control that provides individual ear balance and volume. The mic boom can be used on either the right or left side. The stainless-steel headband is wide and softly padded for all-day comfort. Suggested Retail Price: $229. Contact: Peltor, (317) 692-6582,

Sennheiser Electronics Model 460 Headset: The new HMEC 460 was designed for use in prop and turboprop aircraft. The unit has a silver, brushed surface giving it an exclusive and premium-class look. The headband has extra padding along with extremely soft ear pads. The headset has a very low contact pressure (8.0 N) and it also features built-in sockets for multimedia applications. It’s wired with a 3.5 mm audio-in socket to connect MP3 players; a 2.5 mm socket allows you to plug in your cell phone. The noise-guard circuit uses two AA batteries or can be powered from an instrument-panel power socket. The unit comes with a custom-designed carrying case, owner’s manual and a wind and pop screen. Suggested Retail Price: $789. Contact: Sennheiser Electronics, (860) 434-9190,

Sigtronics S-58 Headset: The S-58 comes in three models, S-58H for helicopter, S-58S for stereo and the standard S-58 for monaural. Among the features are a great look, comfort ear seals, headbands and RFI/EMI immune electronic circuits for clear, quiet transmissions. The set is available in adult and child sizes. Dual volume controls and a stereo/mono switch allow the pilot to fine-tune the set to his or her requirements. The helicopter version has a coiled cord and extra noise-reduction mic circuits and a single U-174-U plug. The S-58 series features 24 dB of noise reduction. It weighs in at a light 11.8 ounces. Suggested Retail Price: $237. Contact: Sigtronics, (909) 305-9399,

Telex Stratus DigitalTelex Stratus 50 Digital: Telex claims that this headset is the leader for hearing protection. Telex has patented its SmartSense technology, based on digital signal processing that produces 50 dB of total noise protection. The average headset normally has about half of that. The circuit constantly samples the cockpit noise and adjusts the circuit to the unique noise signature of your aircraft. The sets also have newly designed ear cups for even more comfort. The headsets have a cell phone/MP3 adapter that allows you to plug in your cell phone and MP3 player at the same time. The mic has a special low-battery drain circuit for longer life. Suggested Retail Price: $875. Contact: Telex, (952) 884-4051,


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