There are two major classes of aviation headsets.- First, there are the "heavyweights" which clamp the wearer's head very tightly ("like a vice," some say), and which reduce the sound of the engine to nearly inaudible levels, obliterating useful sounds, such as the stall-warning horn. Then, there are the "lightweights," which resemble the small headphones used with personal stereos (i.e. Walkman*). Lightweights are quite comfortable, but they reduce the engine sound little, if at all. This limits their usefulness in piston-engine aircraft.
The Model AIR-680 does not fit into either of the above categories. It is lighter than most of the "heavyweights," and it does not clamp the wearer's head tightly like those headsets do. Distinguishing it from lightweights, its large, padded, over-the-ear muffs reduce the engine sound sufficiently for clear communications, in typical piston-engine airplanes. This "in-between" design philosophy provides what may be the perfect compromise! Users report that they are able to wear the AIR-680 headset for many hours of flying, although they could tolerate typical aviation headsets for only 20 to 30 minutes.
The Model AIR-680 has a volume control on the left earcup which controls the listening level in both ears, simultaneously- a nearly indispensable feature for intercom operation. The state-of-the-art flexible boom holds its position after being bumped, due to its built-in mechanical memory- a feature usually associated with more costly headsets. The boom may be bent anywhere along its length, in any direction, for a nearly infinite number of adjustment possibilities. Its length is also adjustable, via a sliding mechanism which allows it to travel in and out of the earcup.
The electret microphone used in the AIR-680 has sound quality and noise cancelling ability which rivals the most costly headsets. We have been told that this same microphone is used by a famous manufacturer, as part of their $300 aviation headset. The earphones are moving-coil, dynamic types- again, the kind used in expensive headsets. At least one "industry leader" aviation headset maker uses outdated WWII technology "magnetic" earphones in a low-end headset which is priced higher than the AIR-680. Thus, it would seem that selecting a major brand-name is not assurance of superior quality.
Many people ask how we can offer a sophisticated, full-featured product at such a low price. The answer is that our company sells the AIR-680 directly from the factory warehouse to the end user. There are no dealers and distributors, adding their extra layers of profit. The result is a superb product at a lower price than many people would believe possible.
But is the quality really as good as we say it is? Only you can decide. So we give you the opportunity to try it for 30 days, with the offer of a full refund of the purchase price (less original shipping/handling charge), if you should not be satisfied. Historically, the overwhelming majority of buyers have elected to keep their AIR-680's. Many have ordered additional units for passengers, as well.
We have borrowed the term “a la carte” from restaurant menus where it refers to singly priced items, not bundled together with “full meals” that include other items. In this context it means we have completely “unbundled” our aviation headset pricing structure so that each buyer can select exactly those features or capabilities required by his/her individual situation, while skipping the others (and not paying for them).
(All options shown above also may be added to AIR-680 cosmetic rejects.)
Because we manufacture these headsets in our own USA facility, we have available at times, “B-Stock” headsets that we scratched accidentally during manufacturing. Although these flaws mostly are insignificant, we do reduce the price significantly. LIMITED QUANTITY. Please call us to inquire as to availability of cosmetic reject Model AIR-680, 510-282-9300 or 800-634-0094.
(Complete with Straight Cable Single Volume control and connector)