Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Bose X vs Zulu

I now have 4 nice headsets. 2 Zulu's, 1 Bose X and the QT Halo. By "nice" I mean a good quality headset with ANR or equivalent.  I have also have a David Clark H20-10 which is nice, but not ANR and it's basically on 5th headset duty.  Behind that I have a few cheapo sets including the crappy kids ones I bought and also my first ever headset, an old Flightcom.  My wife hates the David Clark and the kids love the Zulu's, so for family trips I needed one more good headset.  I bought a Bose X from a guy who upgraded to the new Bose A20 and paid $425 for it, shipped.  This weekend I had a chance to do a direct comparison on the Zulu to the Bose, and I must say for my head the Zulu wins hands down.  The primary reason is that the ear cups are smaller on the Bose, and so the Bose squeezes a little bit of my big ears.  My whole ear fits in the Zulu cup.  If you have small ears, it's a bit more of a wash I'd say... they have about equal noise cancellation.  So in order of preference I'd say Zulu, QT Halo, Bose X.  Value for money goes to the Halo.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

California adventures

This afternoon I basically flew all over California with my friend Alejandro.  Here is a little video he made, what a beautiful state California is!

B55 California Adventures from Alejandro Galioto on Vimeo.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Boogie time

It took me 30 minutes of flying & fiddling before I finally figured out why the XM radio wasn't working. The squelch was set too low on the copilot side. If it's too low, the XM cuts out even if there is no one in the seat and no headset plugged in. Duh.

I did get to play around with my new flight bag gizmo, it's called a boogie board and it's basically a toy I bought for my kids but then figured out I can use it in the plane. Here it is:

It's basically a digital writing board.  Here you can see I used it to write down my IFR clearance.  Press that top button and it erases itself.  Way cool!  No more post it notes scattered around the cockpit.  Any pressure on the screen will write on it.  Here I'm using a ball point pen with the point retracted, it's very readable in sunlight, though I haven't tried it at night yet.

Not bad for $40 from Amazon!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

XM weirdness

I suddenly have a weird problem with my XM radio.  I thought it was no longer working, so I refreshed the radio signal, then I went out to mess around with it and it still wasn't working.  Although the Wx displays fine and the AUX page on my G600 says signal strength is excellent, I can't hear the music audio. Then I turned up the volume by adjusting it on the G600 to max volume, and I could hear it but at max volume it was still very low. Even weirder, it would play even during transmissions. It used to be that whenever I or ATC spoke it would cut out. It also used to be loud. Either I have some fault going on or am I a total dolt and missing some obvious setting... I'm going to try to figure it out tomorrow on my flight down to LA and back.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Back from the shop

It turns out the MP split problem was a loose clamp on the induction hose.  Chris had changed out all the clamps but one, and as it happens that one had a small leak which caused the problem I noticed.  It took about an hour to change out the clamp because it was way up there and he had to reach up through the cowl flap to get it out.  Chris didn't charge me for the labor though so that was cool, and the engines are now running great again... smooth as butter.  Now I just need to get out more and fly her!  Even a quick flight over to Livermore for the maintenance is just such a treat, did I mention I love this plane?  She is so smooth and powerful it's ridiculous.  It was just me on board, but I blasted off out of LVK showing over 2000 fpm.  Wow!