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PS Engineering 8000BT vs Garmin GMA 345


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As part of a fairly economical panel upgrade I'm going to replace a KMA 24H.  I think I've narrowed the choice down to the two audio panels above.  Any feedback or opinions that might  help me decide which one to choose will be greatly appreciated!  Thanks!

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Lance,

many have gone this way recently...

https://www.ps-engineering.com/PMA450B.shtml

it is the Bravo version of the most updated PS audio panel.

So add that to your comparison...

If you are a fan of Big G... also consider the R version... remote, to help move some weight to the back shelf...

The choices get easier when you don’t want one supplier for any reason...

PS is the best audio panel, because that is THE thing they do...  they are also present on MS... so if you have some tough questions we can ask them directly and share the answers... openly.

For that kind of help with big G... you have to go elsewhere.... Trek can be found @Bt... :angry:

Best regards,

-a-

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I have the 8000BT and love it. I pair it with my iPad mini and get ForeFlight audible alerts (“approaching runway 31”). I also get audible checklist items using MiraCheck. I pair it with my phone and listen to music. Lately I have had a lot of passengers, and if they don’t like my music, I just tell them to pair their phone to the 8000BT and we listen to their music. Couple weeks ago, had three passengers plus me and we all took turns listening to each other’s playlist. Lots of fun.

 Flying to MSP today my iPad mini would not connect. Turns out it pairs up to eight devices and then kicks the oldest ones off. I just had to go through the process of re-pairing and I was all set. 

After owning one, I can’t imagine anything better. 

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10 hours ago, cloud116 said:

I have the 8000BT and love it. I pair it with my iPad mini...

Same here, it's one great unit. And don't forget about the instant playback feature and the ability to make phone calls using the headset.

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Thanks all for the good feedback.  It seems like the PS Engineering is the way to go.  I don't see the percentage in the Garmin, it seems like it's just more money without any more features.  It just has the same name as some other stuff in the panel.  

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If you want PS-E quality with a funky old big brand name on it....

BK will sell you exactly that...

Bendix King has repackaged the PS 6000 with BT... it can nicely match an old IP...

Should make for an easy upgrade of an existing BK audio panel...

PP thoughts only, not an instrument guy...

Best regards,

-a-

 

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36 minutes ago, Lance Link said:

Thanks all for the good feedback.  It seems like the PS Engineering is the way to go.  I don't see the percentage in the Garmin, it seems like it's just more money without any more features.  It just has the same name as some other stuff in the panel.  

for 700 more you can have the pma450B. and the install cost is gonna make that 700 a lot less different. Includes a charger, and is generally the best audio panel available right now.

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I really appreciate all of the kind words. I’m currently exhibiting at the AOPA-Frederick Fly-In and I must say, I am humbled. It is amazing the number of pilots who come by just to say thank you. When it is me that is so appreciative for the pilots who trust us with their audio panels.

We are here to help, let me know if you have any questions. 

Thanks

Mark

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Thanks Mark for all you do for the piloting community.  I have a unicorn of an 8000BTi.  It’s amazing.  Pretty much flawless. Excellent audio quality.  It took me a while to realize I needed to flip my new headset to stereo mode but the intelli-Audio feature really works.  I’ve found the recorder feature to be occasionally useful and unobtrusive.  Bluetooth works.  We can get Moana or the Little Mermaid piped through the kids headsets and I don’t have to isolate myself to not miss a radio call.  Really well thought out engineering and high quality easy to use products. 

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Go PS anything before any other option if you want the best audio performance. PMA450 if you can swing it...even a used A or original would be a great choice! Install labor will be a chore no matter what you choose, unfortunately. So worth it though!

Sent from my LG-US996 using Tapatalk

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PMA450b fan here. For all the usual reasons. I was under the impression that the audio panel was the last thing I'd upgrade in my Mooney. After all, it couldn't have as much impact as a good ANR headset, and even that pales in comparison to a good GPS or Engine monitor. But after @Avionics Source made it just too easy with a Black Friday sale and a trade-in on my GMA 340, I bought the PMA450. And WOW. I never realized how much nicer my cockpit could be with a really nice audio panel. 

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Shoot, ya’ll must be rich.  

I have good ol’ KMA24 with a Sigtronics RES-400 intercom and a RES-401 stereo retrofit system (I got it off eBay new in the box for $60).  Plug a $10 Bluetooth receiver into the RES-401 audio input and bam, your listening to your iTunes with 1980 technology!  iPad/Foreflight, all that Jazz...

If I wanted to call somebody that’d have to go through the Bose A20 but I don’t do that.

Now if I could only figure out how to get the music through the cabin speaker for my daughter while we’re on the ground before we get rolling.

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Just now, Culver LFA said:

Shoot, ya’ll must be rich.  

I have good ol’ KMA24 with a Sigtronics RES-400 intercom and a RES-401 stereo retrofit system (I got it off eBay new in the box for $60).  Plug a $10 Bluetooth receiver into the RES-401 audio input and bam, your listening to your iTunes with 1980 technology!  iPad/Foreflight, all that Jazz...

If I wanted to call somebody that’d have to go through the Bose A20 but I don’t do that.

Now if I could only figure out how to get the music through the cabin speaker for my daughter while we’re on the ground before we get rolling.

This is exactly what I was thinking, until in a weak moment, I traded my Garmin audio box in on the PMA450A. It's not just bluetooth, and piping music over the intercom. It's more like the difference between listening to tunes in your car with the full premium Bose audio package, or through the one speaker in the top of the dash connected to your AM and Eight track.

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On 5/8/2019 at 3:48 PM, Bryan said:

If you have a GTN 750, do the remote audio panel. (GMA 35c)

This will give you Bluetooth, Telligence, stereo audio, and a nice clean panel.

Meh... A remote audio panel is a great option if you don't have the panel space, but if you use a panel mount audio panel, you can get four more data fields at the top of the GTN screen.

That said, either the 35c or 350c is really the way to go if you have a GTN. It makes getting things done on the GTN *WAY* faster. Instead of Home->Nearest->Airports, it's "Show nearest airports." Instead of poking the standby frequency and twisting/typing to get the right frequency, it's "Tune destination tower." 

If you don't have a GTN or really don't want to be able to give voice commands in your plane, then I would go with PS Engineering. Aside from voice control, Garmin's audio panels aren't anything special. PS Engineering ONLY does audio panels, and it shows - Their stuff is fantastic. 

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4 hours ago, flyingcheesehead said:

Meh... A remote audio panel is a great option if you don't have the panel space, but if you use a panel mount audio panel, you can get four more data fields at the top of the GTN screen.

 

Which is the very reason we opted for a separate audio panel. Those additional data fields are very nice to have, although we did lose one when we had the GDL 88 installed, since it must display the current transponder code (for some reason) in one of the data fields.

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3 hours ago, flyboy0681 said:

Which is the very reason we opted for a separate audio panel. Those additional data fields are very nice to have, although we did lose one when we had the GDL 88 installed, since it must display the current transponder code (for some reason) in one of the data fields.

Yeah, I have the GMA 350c and the GTX 345 (both panel mount, not remote) and I do still have the transponder controls. I think that's optional, though. There are four data fields in the map on the 750, and six more at the top of the screen between the com and nav frequencies. Transponder takes two of those, audio panel takes four.

I'm OK with having 8, that gives me most of what I want. Eventually, hopefully, we'll have a G3X Touch and more data fields than we know what to do with.

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Personally, I like the look of both of your choices 8000BT and 345

i prefer those to the 450 look . Just not a fan of that LCD display. I am sure quality is great. 

i like that the GMA has a usb charger. That’s how I would go if you don’t have usb chargers somewhere else

I do have a PMA 8000BT in my panel . And a mid con clock with USB ports 

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2
17 hours ago, OR75 said:

i prefer those to the 450 look . Just not a fan of that LCD display.

 

Thanks OR75 for being our customer! I very much appreciate your trust in us. I just wanted to clarify one point, while the original PMA450 did use an LCD display, we replaced the LCD display to an OLED display in early 2016. A HUGE improvement. It also upgraded the standard USB charger to the USB-c charger (15 watts). Now the PMA450B has dual Bluetooth modules. You can see the difference by going to PMA450B

Thanks again OR75!

Mark

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.... another constructive criticism if you don't mid !  The PMA 8000BT has a lot of great features that most pilots don't use because they don't understand they exist.   It helps reading some of the sections of the INSTALLATION manual to understand those and take full advantage.   The Pilot Operating manual is not very good.      

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Thanks for the feedback. Could you please tell me what serial number you have? I want to review the one for your panel. We’ve been building the PMA8000BT since 2006 and during the last 13 years we have made considerable amount improvements both in operation as well as the manual. 

Thanks for your help! If this is a current production unit, I personally will get involved with improving the Pilot Guide.

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