Portland, OR (November 12, 2015) — Lightspeed Aviation, a leading innovator in aviation headsets, announced the launch — via a live webcast — of a breakthrough in cockpit communications. For the first time in history, pilots and their passengers can enjoy the untethered freedom of a wireless headset along with the premium performance and features the brand is known for.
“For years pilots have been asking us when we will be coming out with a wireless headset,” said Allan Schrader, President and CEO of Lightspeed. “There are a number of electrical and acoustic issues that made the project a challenge. I am very proud of our development team for finding novel solutions to those hurdles, enabling our customers to enjoy this new experience in their flying. Having numerous flight hours on it myself, I discovered there is an unanticipated sense of freedom that comes from not having a cable on your headset!”
According to Lightspeed, Tango uses a patent-pending combination of analog and digital technologies called Lightspeed Link™ to create a reliable wireless signal that delivers quality audio and clear communications. Neither Bluetooth or WiFi produced acceptable levels of performance to be selected as the protocol for Tango.
“One of the greatest challenges was to develop technologies that offered the audio fidelity Lightspeed is known for with the reliable signal connections pilots require,” said Schrader. “With Lightspeed Link, we developed a unique solution that accomplishes this while also delivering the excellent ANR that pilots expect from Lightspeed.”
In another aviation headset first, Tango is powered by rechargeable lithium ion batteries in the headset and the panel interface (the panel interface is the communication hub of the Tango wireless system). The batteries, which measure just 1⅜” X 2⅛” and weigh just one ounce, deliver twelve continuous hours of use. Lightspeed refers to them as earth and wallet-friendly because over their lifetime each replaces 300 disposable AA alkaline cells.
The two-port USB charger (included) will fully charge the batteries in just two hours (for those charging during a lunch break, a 75% charge is achieved in 60 minutes). The headset and panel interface can also be charged in use. A separate wall charger and extra batteries can be purchased for those wanting a fully charged backup battery solution.
Because the panel interface includes multiple mounting options and the lower cable it stores is adjustable to 31 inches, it can be placed conveniently in any aircraft. Lightspeed had an eye on redundancy, adding a backup cable that is also stored in the panel interface, ensuring uninterrupted communications in the event of total battery depletion.
Like all Lightspeed headsets, Tango includes Bluetooth for both phone and streaming music and an auxiliary input jack for connecting audio devices via a patch cable, and is compatible with FlightLink, Lightspeed’s in-cockpit recording app. Tango retails for $800 and is available in dual GA, LEMO (panel power), and heli (U-174) configurations. Shipments will begin immediately.
About Lightspeed Aviation
Lightspeed Aviation is a leading manufacturer of premium aviation headsets. The company has established a reputation for outstanding performance, value, and support and is a leader in innovation in aviation headsets with a number of first-to-market advances, including Bluetooth® integration, Auto Shutoff™, Streaming Quiet™ ANR, and now, with Tango™, the world’s first premium wireless aviation headset. This has earned Lightspeed a loyal customer following among professional, commercial, and private pilots.
Lightspeed also creates shared values with both employees and customers by generously participating in corporate charity matching programs and through its funding of the Lightspeed Aviation Foundation, which supports growth and compassion-related causes with an aviation focus. Over half a million dollars has been given to over 50 aviation non-profits in its 6 years of operation.