Our picks for 6 of the best motorbike helmets
The Shoei RF-1200 is a helmet that has garnered immense popularity among motorcycle enthusiasts for its reputation of blending safety, comfort, and performance. As one of the top choices in the premium helmet market, it's important to weigh the pros and cons before making an informed decision.
Exceptional Safety: Shoei's commitment to safety is evident in the RF-1200. It's constructed using a Multi-Ply Matrix AIM+ shell, which combines organic fibers and multi-composite fibers to provide superior impact absorption and rigidity. It's also DOT and SNELL certified, ensuring top-notch protection.
Optimized Aerodynamics: The RF-1200 features a redesigned shell shape and an enhanced spoiler, resulting in improved aerodynamics and reduced wind resistance. This makes it a great option for both sport and touring riders, contributing to better stability at high speeds.
Ventilation System: The helmet's ventilation system is strategically designed to provide efficient airflow and keep the rider cool during rides. With adjustable intake and exhaust vents, the RF-1200 offers good ventilation control, making it suitable for various weather conditions.
Comfortable Interior: The plush 3D Max-Dry System II interior liner is moisture-wicking, removable, washable, and designed to offer a comfortable fit. The helmet's center pad has also been modified to provide better comfort around the rider's ears, enhancing overall wearability.
Price Point: As a premium helmet, the Shoei RF-1200 does come with a higher price tag compared to some other options in the market. While the quality justifies the cost, it might be a consideration for budget-conscious riders.
Noise Levels: While the RF-1200 offers impressive aerodynamics, some users have reported that it could still generate noticeable wind noise, especially at higher speeds. This can vary based on factors such as the rider's riding posture and the motorcycle being used.
Limited Sun Visor: Unlike some helmets that feature built-in sun visors, the Shoei RF-1200 doesn't have this option. Riders who prefer sun protection without the need for additional eyewear might find this a minor inconvenience.
In conclusion, the Shoei RF-1200 stands as a top-tier helmet choice for riders seeking a balance between safety, comfort, and performance. Its exceptional safety features, aerodynamic design, and ventilation system make it a reliable option for various riding styles. While the price point might be a consideration, the investment in quality and safety is worth it for many motorcyclists. Ultimately, the RF-1200 is a testament to Shoei's commitment to delivering a premium riding experience.
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The Arai Corsair-X helmet has carved a niche for itself in the motorcycle community, boasting a reputation for uncompromising safety and customizable comfort. As one of the most trusted names in the helmet industry, let's delve into the pros and cons of the Arai Corsair-X.
Premium Safety: Arai helmets are renowned for their commitment to safety, and the Corsair-X is no exception. It features a PB-SNC2 shell that combines Super Fiber and other proprietary materials to create a shell that's both strong and lightweight. The helmet meets SNELL and DOT safety standards, providing peace of mind for riders.
VAS Shield System: Arai's Variable Axis System (VAS) shield mechanism enhances the Corsair-X's shell integrity, resulting in a smoother, rounder shape that improves aerodynamics and minimizes turbulence. The shield itself provides excellent clarity, and its locking mechanism prevents unexpected opening during rides.
Custom Fit: One of the standout features of the Corsair-X is its customizable fit. Arai offers different interior padding options and removable pads of varying thickness to allow riders to achieve their ideal fit. This attention to personalized comfort sets the Corsair-X apart from the competition.
Effective Ventilation: The helmet's ventilation system is strategically designed to channel air through the helmet, effectively reducing heat buildup and enhancing rider comfort during long rides. The brow vents, side exhausts, and chin vents work together to create a balanced airflow.
Price Point: Arai helmets are known for their premium quality, but this quality comes at a price. The Corsair-X is positioned at a higher price point, which might deter budget-conscious riders. However, many riders consider the investment a worthwhile one given the brand's reputation for safety and durability.
Ventilation Noise: While the ventilation system is effective, some riders have noted that it can generate a noticeable amount of noise when fully opened. This is a subjective issue and can depend on factors like riding speed and wind conditions.
Relatively Heavy: Compared to some other high-end helmets, the Corsair-X can be considered slightly heavier. This might be noticeable during longer rides, especially for those who prioritize lightweight gear.
In conclusion, the Arai Corsair-X helmet lives up to the brand's legacy by providing unmatched safety features, customizable fit, and a commitment to quality. Riders who prioritize safety and comfort, and are willing to invest in a premium helmet, will find the Corsair-X an excellent choice. While the price point might be a consideration, the helmet's durability and personalized fit options make it a compelling option for riders seeking the best in protection and comfort.
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AGV Pista GP-R
The AGV Pista GP-R helmet is a pinnacle of engineering, designed to cater to the needs of professional racers and serious track enthusiasts. With its race-ready features and cutting-edge technology, let's explore the pros and cons of the AGV Pista GP-R.
Ultimate Safety: AGV leaves no stone unturned when it comes to safety. The Pista GP-R is constructed using a carbon fiber shell that offers exceptional strength and impact absorption. It's certified by both DOT and ECE, ensuring its suitability for racing and road use alike.
Aerodynamic Excellence: The AGV Pista GP-R's advanced aerodynamics are a standout feature. The helmet is wind-tunnel tested to perfection, providing exceptional stability and reduced drag, crucial for high-speed performance on the racetrack.
AGV Extreme Standards: AGV's Extreme Standards bring a host of features like the innovative AGV Integrated Ventilation (IVS) system that optimizes airflow, and the Metal Air Vents that provide enhanced durability. The hydration system compatibility is a boon for endurance racing.
Panoramic Vision: The Pista GP-R features a 190-degree horizontal field of view, offering racers an unparalleled view of their surroundings. This expanded vision can be a game-changer on the track, aiding in maneuvering and enhancing safety.
Premium Pricing: As a helmet built for racers and high-performance riders, the AGV Pista GP-R comes with a premium price tag. While the quality and technology justify the cost for professionals, it might be a significant investment for the average rider.
Intense Noise Levels: Due to the helmet's focus on aerodynamics and speed, some users have reported higher noise levels compared to other helmets. This is an inherent trade-off for the helmet's performance-oriented design.
Race-Focused Fit: The AGV Pista GP-R has a race-focused fit that may not be as comfortable for longer rides on the streets. The snug fit that enhances aerodynamics might not be suitable for riders seeking extended comfort during touring.
In conclusion, the AGV Pista GP-R is an embodiment of AGV's commitment to pushing the boundaries of helmet technology. Crafted for those who demand peak performance and uncompromising safety, this helmet excels on the racetrack. Its top-tier safety features, remarkable aerodynamics, and innovative ventilation system place it at the forefront of motorcycle helmet technology. While its premium pricing and specialized fit might not cater to all riders, those who prioritize race-ready performance will find the AGV Pista GP-R to be a worthy investment in their riding journey.
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Bell Qualifier DLX MIPS
The Bell Qualifier DLX MIPS helmet offers riders a versatile option that combines safety innovation with enhanced features. With the integration of MIPS technology, let's delve into the pros and cons of the Bell Qualifier DLX MIPS.
MIPS Technology: The standout feature of the Qualifier DLX MIPS is the MIPS (Multi-Directional Impact Protection System) technology. This added layer between the comfort liner and the EPS liner helps mitigate rotational forces during certain impacts, enhancing overall safety.
Transitions Shield: The Qualifier DLX MIPS comes equipped with a Transitions Adaptive Shield. This shield automatically adjusts to changing light conditions, reducing the need to swap out shields manually and enhancing visibility during various weather conditions.
Value for Features: The helmet offers a balance between price and features, making it an attractive option for riders seeking added benefits without breaking the bank. The inclusion of MIPS and the Transitions shield adds significant value compared to standard helmets.
Speaker Pockets: For riders who enjoy communication systems, the Qualifier DLX MIPS has built-in speaker pockets. These pockets accommodate communication devices, allowing for easy integration without compromising helmet comfort.
Fit Variability: Some users have reported variability in the helmet's fit. While the adjustable ventilation and padding help, riders with specific head shapes might need to spend more time finding the optimal fit compared to other helmets.
Noise Levels: The helmet's ventilation system, while effective, can lead to increased wind noise at higher speeds. This might be a consideration for riders seeking a quieter riding experience.
Weight: The Qualifier DLX MIPS isn't the lightest helmet in its class. For some riders, the weight might become noticeable during longer rides, especially for those used to more lightweight options.
In conclusion, the Bell Qualifier DLX MIPS helmet offers a solid combination of safety features and added benefits at a reasonable price point. The incorporation of MIPS technology and the Transitions shield elevate its safety and convenience factors, making it an appealing option for a wide range of riders. While fit variability and potential noise levels might be points of consideration, the Qualifier DLX MIPS's value for its features makes it a commendable choice for riders seeking enhanced safety and adaptability on the road.
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The Scorpion EXO-R420 helmet offers riders an affordable yet well-rounded option that emphasizes comfort and protection. With a focus on delivering value without compromising on safety, let's explore the pros and cons of the Scorpion EXO-R420.
Affordable Pricing: The EXO-R420 provides an excellent balance between quality and affordability. It's a budget-friendly option that offers essential safety features without breaking the bank, making it accessible to a wide range of riders.
Polycarbonate Shell: The helmet's polycarbonate shell construction strikes a good balance between strength and weight. It provides reliable impact protection while keeping the helmet relatively lightweight, contributing to rider comfort during longer rides.
AirFit™ Liner Inflation System: The EXO-R420 comes with Scorpion's AirFit™ Liner Inflation System, allowing riders to customize the fit for enhanced comfort. The inflatable cheek pads offer a snug yet comfortable fit tailored to individual preferences.
Ventilation: The helmet features adjustable intake vents and exhaust ports that facilitate proper airflow, helping to regulate temperature during rides. The ventilation system contributes to overall rider comfort, especially in warmer conditions.
Basic Features: While the EXO-R420 offers essential safety features, it lacks some of the advanced technologies and features found in higher-end helmets. Riders seeking cutting-edge features may need to consider higher-priced options.
Noise Levels: Some users have noted that the helmet can produce noticeable wind noise at higher speeds. While this might not be a deal-breaker for everyone, it's worth considering if you prioritize a quieter riding experience.
Limited Graphics Options: The range of graphics and designs available for the EXO-R420 might be more limited compared to other helmet models. This could impact riders who prefer a wide variety of aesthetic choices.
In conclusion, the Scorpion EXO-R420 helmet delivers affordability and comfort without compromising on safety. While it may lack some of the advanced features found in pricier helmets, it offers a reliable option for riders seeking essential protection on a budget. The customizable fit and decent ventilation contribute to a comfortable riding experience, making the EXO-R420 a suitable choice for those who prioritize practicality and value.
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HJC RPHA 11 Pro
The HJC RPHA 11 Pro helmet is a blend of high-performance features and comfort, designed to cater to riders seeking both protection and a comfortable ride. With advanced technology and a focus on performance, let's delve into the pros and cons of the HJC RPHA 11 Pro.
Premium Build: The RPHA 11 Pro boasts a Premium Integrated Matrix (P.I.M.) Plus shell construction that combines carbon fiber, aramid, fiberglass, and organic non-woven fabric to create a strong yet lightweight helmet. This construction contributes to both safety and rider comfort.
Aerodynamic Design: HJC has invested in wind tunnel testing to refine the RPHA 11 Pro's aerodynamics. The helmet's shape and spoiler design enhance stability at high speeds, reducing drag and turbulence for a more comfortable ride.
Advanced Ventilation: The helmet features a dual-channel, multi-stage ventilation system that efficiently channels air through the helmet, helping to keep the rider cool and comfortable during rides, especially in warm weather.
Quick Release Shield: The RPHA 11 Pro's shield mechanism is equipped with HJC's RapidFire™ II technology, allowing for tool-free removal and installation of the face shield. This feature adds convenience, especially when needing to switch out shields quickly.
Noise Levels: Some riders have reported that the RPHA 11 Pro can generate noticeable wind noise at higher speeds. While the helmet's aerodynamics are designed to reduce turbulence, noise levels might still be a consideration for those seeking a quieter ride.
Fit Consistency: While many riders find the RPHA 11 Pro's fit to be comfortable, some have noted slight inconsistencies in fit among different sizes and shapes. Ensuring a proper fit through thorough fitting is important to maximize comfort.
Price Point: The RPHA 11 Pro sits in the mid to high price range of helmets. While the features and quality justify the cost for many riders, it might not be the most budget-friendly option for everyone.
In conclusion, the HJC RPHA 11 Pro helmet stands as a testament to HJC's dedication to delivering a blend of performance, safety, and comfort. With its premium build, aerodynamic design, and advanced ventilation, it's a solid option for riders seeking a well-rounded helmet. While noise levels and fit consistency might be considerations, the RPHA 11 Pro's features and overall quality make it a compelling choice for those looking to elevate their riding experience.
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