Listen-Only headsets & Boom-Mic headsets for Ham Radio


Dave Bottom - A Career in Electronics

Although I had been building radios since I was 9 years old and I had worked in my Dad's business, my formal entry into the electronics industry would begin in 1966 with a summer job at Hewlett-Packard Co, in Palo Alto, CA.

By the end of the summer I knew I needed to keep working to bring in money for books, gas, car insurance and so forth during my first year in college. So I brought in some of my Ham Radio projects, some solid state VHF radio gear and talked to one of the people in personnel and told them I wanted to keep working during school. They asked if they could keep the radio gear for a few days and I said sure.

The next morning I was called to personnel and invited to go down to the Frequency & Time Division R&D Lab. There he showed me what sort of things they were doing and asked if I'd like to work any hours I had available there in the lab. This is like asking a kid if he'd like to work in the candy factory. Of course I would. This would be only the beginning of an amazing 43 year career, made in no small part due to a chance meeting with Bill Hewlett one evening in the R&D lab in 1967. That chance meeting would change my career trajectory forever.

While I spent much time testing, designing and building test equipment, I was also a product manager, worked on advanced telecommunications systems and with advanced networking and storage products before the explosion of the Internet where I would begin building data centers for multi-national corporations.

In 2000 our company was purchased by Intel Corp for $240M, primarily for some critical patents around advanced server and data center management technologies. Patents I would continue defending (successfully) for 20 years.

After retiring in 2003 and eventually getting "Back On The Air" in 2009 after a time spent with my other hobby, road racing - primarily with Porsches as I had back in teh '70s. I decide to build a couple of headsets for my station. A visit to the fellow that had built our race teams headsets, I asked if I could pick through his parts and build a stereo Listen-Only and a Boom-Mic headset for my station. While primarily a CW Op, I love chasing DX and so I work'em on Phone as well as CW.

Now I kept busy building headsets for local Hams that wanted headsets like mine. I think around 16 headsets when my then neighbor John, W6SL (now SK) said "Why donít you build these and sell them to Hams? After all where else can they get a commercial quality headset".

A visit back to my now friend that had built our headsets and sold me parts, I asked if we could build a small run and test the market to see if it was real. He agreed to make a small run of 25 each and well - the rest is history.

After 11 years and more than 10,000 headsets shipped to more than 130 countries and in use on most major DXpeditions since 2013, with expansion twice to larger manufacturing facilities, I would say: "Yes quality headsets were in demand".

Like at Hewlett-Packard in the '60s/70's we work at constant improvement and addressing the needs of each new generation of HF Radios from all of the major manufactures, while also focused on constant improvements in quality and performance to meet the capabilities of all of the next generation radios.

Leveraging all we do in the commercial headset manufacturing (millions of headsets) we do for our OEM customers, gives us the ability to provide headsets that would never be possible in the relatively low volume for Amateur Radio.

Today we build the very best headsets available for the latest HF Amateur Radio gear including HF Desktop, HF Mobile/Portable and QRP radios as well as the Remote Control devices for so many radios that may be operated remotely across the Internet.

How about a rugged headset designed specifically for Amateur Radio Communications?

What's different about radiosport headsets?

With radiosport headsets we have addressed the issues of the Consumer Electronics headsets typically sold to Hams, by developing our headsets around very high-end commercial communications headsets that typically retail in the $375 to $500 range, but we offer these at much lower cost to the Amateur Radio community.

With a radiosport headset you can enjoy the comfort, ruggedness and performance of the very best headsets we can make

10 Reasons You Want a radiosport Headset:

1) Rugged Construction

Foremost is a headset that is rugged enough to stand the abuse of the NASCAR Pit Lane and keep coming back for more. We used our own in the Pit lane while racing our Porsche GT3 Cup car for many years of faultless operation.

2) Noise Reduction

Tough Molded Ear Domes with sound insulation that provides 24dB Noise reduction from outside QRN and QRM in the shack or at that Multi-Op Contest station. Dual Layer Gel Ear Cushions, Cloth Ear Covers and Soft Pillow-Top Head Pad are standard on our deluxe "dream" edition and 10th Anniversary edition headsets.

3) Super Rugged Headset-To-Radio Cables

All of our Headset-To-Radio Cable Assemblies use Belden MIL-Spec cable materials custom made for us that have Kevlar reinforced 26 AWG leads with Teflon insulation that provided unmatched flexibility and strength providing a long life of trouble free operation.

4) User Interchangeable Headset-To-Radio Cables

How about a "No Obsolescence" headset you can simply purchase another Headset-To-Radio cable to use with a new radio or to use with your HF station during DX Chasing or Contesting but then use with your Mobile/Portable rig or for Remote over the Internet?

5) Industry Standard miniXLR Headset Radio Port

We use the super reliable Switchcraft miniXLR 6-pin locking i nterface connector on all of our deluxe "dream edition" Boom-Mic headsets - Including our 10th Anniversary Edition headset. The miniXLR connector has been an industry standard for more than 30 years - first in 5-Pin and later in 6-Pin (for stereo). This facilitates simple Headset-To-Radio cable swapping for different radios. Likewise our RS20S Listen-Only Headset comes with the same quality Belden cable material in a detachable cable with molded on connectors.

6) Use on any HF radio in your shack, or on the road

Only radiosport RS60CF headset support use of the same Mic on any HF or VHF/UHF station in your shack. As well as many Remote Rig type applications for operating across the Internet.

Our new Flex-Boom rotates nearly 270 degrees to allow you to simply rotate the Mic-Boom up and out of the way to move quickly to switch from Phone to CW operating.

7) Built-in PTT on the Headset

All of our radiosport headsets include a built-in PTT on the headset Left Ear Dome. Making it easy to make a quick reply if you step away from your operating position and your Foot or Hand Operated PTT Switch.

8) Auxiliary Radio Port

Our RS60CF Boom-Mic headset includes an Auxiliary Radio Port enabling connection of a second receiver to monitor the local repeater or plug our RS20S Listen-Only Headset in for a 2nd Op - Great for Field Day! I can routinely listen to the Main-receiver in the Left Ear, Sub- receiver in the Right Ear while also listening to VHF and UHF in separate ears as well from my TM-V71A Dual-Receive VHF/UHF transceiver.

9) Spare Parts for nearly every headset our factory has built since 1992!

That's right we have spare parts for nearly every headset we've built since 1992 and that also means upgraded replacement parts for very early models, as well as a host of headset accessories.

10) A 5 Year Warranty on our RS20S and RS60CF deluxe dream edition headsets

That's right we have enough confidence in our products to offer an unprecedented 5 Year Warranty that covers all but User Replaceable parts like Cotton Ear Covers, Gel Ear Cushions, Mic Socks and the Soft Pillow-Top Head Pads. We have many users still with there 7, 8, 9 and 10 year old headsets. The last headset you'll ever have to buy!

Who is this guy?

To learn more about me and my Ham Radio experience that began in 1957 at the age of 9, visit my shack at by clicking on the QRZ.COM logo below:

73, Dave WI6R

To see what others have to say about their radiosport headset - Click on the logo below:

radiosport headsets & boom-mic headsets for amateur radio

ARLAN Communications
5341 N Praire Heights Dr.
Kingman, AZ 86409
(805) 504-3944

Dave Bottom, WI6R

ex-KD6AZ - 1980-2010
ex-WB6BDA - 1962-1979
Copyright 1996-2023, Arlan Communications.