Rider 550 - Hoarse voice in headset

JP_RAVEN Registered Users Posts: 24
Master Explorer
edited January 2019 in RIDER
I recently purchased the brand new TomTom Rider 550 and paired it by Bluetooth to my Sena SRL headset and iPhone.

Whenever the iPhone pairing is active, the audio from the Rider is badly distorted. When you turn off the phone or put it in airplane mode, the problem goes away.

After searching the forums, I discovered that this problem is not new. It has existed for over 2 years with the Rider 400/450, yet despite hundreds of posts, nothing seems to have been done about it.

See: https://en.discussions.tomtom.com/rider-51/rider-400-hoarse-voice-in-headset-987745/

See also: https://en.discussions.tomtom.com/rider-51/rider-400-audio-quality-not-improved-in-latest-software-1000309/

Not only has TomTom brought out a new model with exactly the same fault, but they have also incorrectly marked the first thread above as "Solved"!!!

I tried contacting support today. The support agent put me on hold for three minutes, then told me my issue would be escalated. She didn't bother asking me for the make/model of phone or headset! The confirmation email I received following the call stated "As discussed on call, I have escalated the case to the concern team and may be in future we might release an update for the same."

Worse still, the email stated "After 3 days your incident will be automatically set to Answered".

Come on TomTom, treat your customers with some respect!

I look forward to a reply from TomTom, but I'm not holding my breath...


  • KawiNinja400
    KawiNinja400 Registered Users Posts: 6
    Apprentice Traveler
    Im wondering if this issue is happening with Android phones too. Im seriously thinking of buying the Rider 550. One of the main selling points of going with the Rider 550 VS zūmo® 396 LMT-S is that the Rider has a faster processor.
    PFWIL Registered Users Posts: 5
    Master Traveler
  • mplacona
    mplacona Registered Users Posts: 1
    New Traveler
    Same problem and no solution. Whilst they're selling well they won't bother to fix.

    Also, since ever, Tomtoms takes ages to download and update maps and/or firmware.
  • AndersNordh
    AndersNordh Registered Users Posts: 277
    Supreme Navigator
    JP_RAVEN wrote:
    Not only has TomTom brought out a new model with exactly the same fault, but they have also incorrectly marked the first thread above as "Solved"!!!
    Hi, just a test if you like to see if the problem get less noticeable ...

    If you stop the live traffic update by not allowing the device to use you location info, does that help the hoarse voice situation?

    Have a good one,
  • Chorsley
    Chorsley Registered Users Posts: 11
    Apprentice Traveler
    have you tried the a2dp setting in the bluetooth menu?
  • RoadRider
    RoadRider Registered Users Posts: 750
    Revered Pioneer
    When you only need traffic updates and navigation instructions it is an option to disable de Bluetooth connection with the phone an enable Wifi.
    To do this follow these steps;

    - Remove Bluetooth connection with phone in TomTom Rider 5x0
    - Remove MyDrive App on Phone
    - Remove Rider in Bluetooth settings on phone
    - Create WiFi hotspot on Phone
    - Add the WiFi hotspot in the Riders WiFi settings
    - Connect the Bluetooth with the Rider using the Advanced Audio Distribution Profile (A2DP)

    You will get a stable traffic updates connection and better audio for navigation instructions.

    (Never enable both WiFi and Bluetooth connections with the Phone)
  • AndersNordh
    AndersNordh Registered Users Posts: 277
    Supreme Navigator
    RoadRider wrote:
    You will get a stable traffic updates connection and better audio for navigation instructions.
    Hi, I have tried that but I had several GB usage per 300-500 km rides so for me that was not an option. Tomtom responded with info saying that wifi was not limited at all and not intended for use while riding, they said to use Bluetooth to avoid using surging my data contract.

    Please see https://en.discussions.tomtom.com/rider-51/rider-550-using-a-lot-of-bandwidth-while-riding-1039007

    Have a nice one,
  • lemagus
    lemagus Registered Users Posts: 4
    Master Traveler
    Chorsley wrote:
    have you tried the a2dp setting in the bluetooth menu?
    Choosing this option worked for me - the quality of the TT directions improved dramatically. However, now the spoken TT direction interrupt any music playing and the music will not return at all - a real problem. Sometimes when the next direction is spoken the music will turn back on but it is random and not acceptable.
  • RoadRider
    RoadRider Registered Users Posts: 750
    Revered Pioneer
    Does your headset support two A2DP channels?
    Many  headsets only support two BT channels if one is HSP and tho other A2DP. 

    My headsets has the same problem with the intercom. TT directions interrupt the intercom function and many times the intercom doesn't reconnect.
    In my case this is not a TomTom issue (with Garmin Zumu same problem) but a bug in the headset. When I contact Cellularline they know the problem exist and is by design.

    (now I use a cheap A2DP adapter and FM transmiter for TT directions over FM)
  • Michaelkeay
    Michaelkeay Registered Users Posts: 10
    Legendary Explorer
    edited May 2019
    I was experiencing the distorted voice on my new rider 550 with a Sena 10S (and iPhone 6S) I deleted pairings then paired the Sena (as a gps) then paired the phone. It worked with no distortion. The BT connection to Sena is the high quality a2dp option. I can also listen to music from my phone with tomtom interrupting with directions or warnings and then returning to the music. All is great. I worry this will not last 😀. Possibly the trick is to pair the headset first.
  • JeromeFra
    JeromeFra franceRegistered Users Posts: 27
    Outstanding Explorer
    edited June 2019
    This problem has not been resolved since months. I have bought first a rider 400 the a rider 550 then a Sena 10S and a Sena 20S hoping that this will resolved the issue but I still experiment the same problem. Connexion not stable and sometimes the micro to answer calls doesn't work and my correspondant doesn't hear me. I have escalted the issue to Sena who responded quickly with a personal answer. You will find hereunder their answer that I have translated in English. I am French.
    Your request (#295700) has been updated.
    To review the status of the request and add additional comments, follow the link below:
    You can also add a comment by replying to this email.

    Support Agent NG, Jun 12, 12:25 AM PDT:
    Dear Mister,

    Thanks to have contacted the Sena customer service again.

    First let me raise one question: as we are not TomTom technical support, have you contacted TomTom to ask them their advice about the issues that you have with your Rider 550 and the SRL (Sena 20S) ?

    We hope that they will be able to help you to find a solution, you are not the only one to use this configuration and to complain about the phone functionalities which are not correctly transmitted by the TomTom to the Sena.

    But since there is no issue when the phone is connected directly to the Sena like you did for the 10S. I am afraid that the issue doesn't come from the SRL but the issue is the connexion between the phone, the TomTom and from the connexion between the TomTom with the Sena.

    What ever we speak about the 10S or the SRL, the common deniminator is unfortunately always the TomTom rider 550.

    We would like to find a solution my colleague Alexis has contacted them, unfortunately without answer from TomTom since a month and my manager a already send several Sena in order that they test them and tell us why we have these issues.
    Actually we cannot adapt our systems to a navigation system for which we don't know the exact Bluetooth protocols and can only hope that TomTom will answer us.

    I hope that in getting more request from their customers that TomTom will recognize the urgency of this subject, their forum shows that we are not the only one to have difficulties with their Bluetooth pairing. https://discussions.tomtom.com/en/discussion/1036438/rider-550-hoarse-voice-in-headset

    If you could contact TomTom in order that we find a solution together that would be great.

    Thanks and regards.

    Support Specialist
    R I D E C O N N E C T E D
    SENA Europe GmbH
    I Paul-Henri-Spaak-str. 22
    | 51069 Cologne
    | Germany

  • Michaelkeay
    Michaelkeay Registered Users Posts: 10
    Legendary Explorer
    edited June 2019
    I have a 550, Sena 10S and (then) an iphone 6Splus. I had this distortion problem after just pairing up everything myself. I deleted the pairings on all devices and then paired in this order:

    Update to v2 firmware on Sena
    Phone to Sena headset
    TomTom to Phone
    Tomtom to Sena headset (see Note)

    It was important to also uninstall Mydrive app on the phone and then reinstall it. Then when you pair Tomtom to phone you are advised to run the app and follow instructions. The tom tom generates a Qcode which the app scans and you get phone fully connected with options for messages display etc.

    All worked well - no distortion and when playing music the sena would play tomtom voice instructions and then return to the music - albeit after a bit of a lag sometimes. When audio multitasking was enabled on Sena the instructions would overlay (rather than interrupt an intercom conversation - which was cool)

    I then dumped Apple and bought a Samsung S10 and thought 'here we go again...'
    But I simply paired the phone after a new install of Mydrive app and all was well.

    Note: It is also important to check the pairing procedure for a Sena headset to tom tom. With firmware version 2 for the Sena there was a new instruction (6.3.1 on page 27) for GPS pairing (jog dial 5 seconds then double tap phone button until you hear a (new) "GPS Pairing" mode which I dont think I had heard before

    Hope this may help.
  • Michaelkeay
    Michaelkeay Registered Users Posts: 10
    Legendary Explorer
    edited June 2019
    OK - after further testing after my post on June 26th I have found that the hoarse distorted voice will return if I switch the tomtom bluetooth connection to the sena to low quality HSP rather than A2DP (high quality) - so make sure it is on A2DP. I find I can still use my Samsumg voice controls (hey Bixby next track) which is great ..... BUT when the tomtom chirps up with a voice instruction it SOMETIMES fails to return to the music - about 50% of the time. I can stop this happening by switching off voice instructions on the tom tom (which is fine for me most of the time) If however I want voice instructions and it fails to return to the music I briefly turn off then on again the tomtom bluetooth Sena A2DP selection. Not ideal but workable. I have found the above to be true whether the Sena audio multitasking is on or off.. So the problem is definitely with the Tomtom - but requesting help from Tomtom is like pixxxxg into the wind.
  • ninjaef
    ninjaef Registered Users Posts: 10
    Master Traveler
    edited July 2019
    I use Interphone Link headset paired with the TomTom 550 in A2DP mode. And a Samsung A70 running MyDrive app paired with the TomTom 550. .The A70 has "Connection Sharing" enabled so that data is transmitted over Bluetooth. The A70 is set to fire up bluetooth and connect to the TomTom through a BixbyRountine that runs when I start MyDrive app.

    Perfect clear sound, anything playing through the headset (FM tuner,, music) is interrupted and resumes after the navigation audio. Traffic and Speed Camera audio works. Hardly any data usage. Intercom gets priority over Navigation - and this is as expected so excellent again!

    No complaints. Excellent. Cannot recommend enough.The Interphone Link works perfectly, cost me £60 and has a built in FM tuner. GREAT !!

    I did fully update the TomTom until no further updates were available and then paired everything up. Tried several times using different methods but always worked flawlessly. If users are having these problems reported here then it cannot be the TomTom [provided youhave installed all updates] it must be your phone/headset. Note not all headsets have A2DP and/or the other protocols needed. As per previous post above, make sure you follow pairing guides for phone and headsets. Some firmware requires a certain order to pairing because of the way two channel bluetooth works. I dont think the TomTom cares because it was happy whatever method I used.