Best Open-Face Helmets of 2020 Road Tested Review – ChampionHelmets.com


Jet helmets can be a tricky category since
a lot of the focus is on your experience of the helmet, so, we’ve set out on our road
test to find the best one for 2020. Sebastian from Champion Helmets here and with
jet helmets the thing most people are looking for, besides a basic level of safety, is the
full experience of the road and the bike. Manufacturers often pride themselves on how
wide the field of view of the visor is and how much comfort you really get. But marketing and handsome business casual
models aside, let’s see how these helmets really do out on the road. For today’s road test, we’ve chosen our
top 3 helmets, which includes the Arai SZ-R VAS, the Schuberth M1 Pro, and the Shoei J-Cruise
2. Just a reminder before going further to subscribe
and check out our YouTube channel where we have full length reviews and road tests of
each individual helmet. Each of these helmets here represent the top
of their respective company’s jet helmet lines and offer a surprisingly large array
of options. But before taking them out on the road, just
a quick refresher for how we set up our road tests. On the left, is a white monitor showing the
helmet’s internal temperature in degrees C, measured through a thermometer placed in
the helmet’s EPS grooves. In the middle, is a decibel meter taking readings
from a microphone placed near our rider’s ear. On the right is a phone showing the day’s
airspeed from an anemometer mounted on the bike. Lastly, in the middle on the dash is our rider’s
speed and the day’s external temperature. First up, we’ve got the Arai SZ-R VAS, Arai’s
main entry to the jet helmet market. This helmet is made of Arai’s peripherally
belted complex laminate construction using Arai’s special super fiber laminates to
create a very strong and light helmet and it has 3 shell sizes. The helmet comes at a recommended retail price
of about 600 Euros, or approximately 660 US Dollars. This was also a light helmet, since it is
a jet helmet, and comes in weighing at about 1350 grams in a size M. The SZ-R VAS’ ventilation
system was inspired the Arai RX-7V, so this means this helmet will have very strong ventilation. The helmet’s vents are located in a set
of three at the top and two rear exhausts at the back. All of these air intakes are adjustable using
small switches. The visor of the SZ-R VAS is pinlock prepared
with the pinlock insert and Arai’s Pro-Shade system sold separately since this helmet also
doesn’t have an integrated sun visor. Lastly, the SZ-R VAS has a removable, washable,
and anti-bacterial liner that also fits glasses. When we took the helmet out, it was a cooler
day with a little bit of sunlight. During the test, our rider rode at about 130
km/h on long stretches of highway. The day’s airspeed on the helmet ranged
from about 110 km/h to 130 km/h. The exterior temperature for the day was 7
degrees Celsius compared to the SZ-R VAS’ interior temperature of 6 degrees. So, that’s one degree less than the outside. When we look at the noise measurement, we
see the helmet came in at a noisy 106 decibels, but this is unsurprising for a jet helmet,
since the name says it all. During the test, our rider found the helmet
to be very comfortable, quiet, and it ventilated well thanks to the strong airflow in the helmet. The main let down was the lack of an internal
sun visor and the pinlock lens in the box, since both features have become more and more
standard. Though the lack of an internal sun visor is
pretty standard for Arai given they see these features as weakening the helmets integrity. Now, let’s see how the helmet did for our
ranking. For material, since the SZ-R VAS is made of
Arai’s complex laminate construction and comes in 3 shell sizes, that’s 4 stars. For weight as well, the Arai gets another
5 stars. For the visor, without the pinlock insert
in the box, this helmet gets 3 stars. We were very pleased with the ventilation,
and, with 1 degree lower than the outside, the SZ-R VAS gets another 5 stars. For noise, it’s no surprise that the SZ-R
VAS gets 1 star with 106 decibels. Lastly, for comfort, the SZ-R VAS does well
with 4 stars. This brings the Arai to a total of 3.5 stars
at 27 Euros/star, which isn’t bad though these stars are definitely coming in at the
more expensive end of the market. Next up, we’ve got the Schuberth M1 Pro. This is another top jet helmet that definitely
shows some strong similarities to the Schuberth C4 Pro, Schuberth’s modular helmet. The shell of the M1 Pro comes in 2 shell sizes
and is made of fiberglass through Schuberth’s direct fiber processing method, where the
fiberglass is extruded and moulded in such a way as to make the helmet as light as possible. Nonetheless, this helmet came in weighing
at about 1401 grams. The M1 Pro comes at a recommended retail price
of about 440 Euros, or approximately 490 US Dollars. For ventilation, the M1 Pro has one large
adjustable vent in the top at the front and any other airflow will have to come from underneath
the visor, since that’s the only vent. The visor of the M1 Pro is very large and
pinlock prepared, and it even has an internal sun visor, though it does not come with the
anti-fog pinlock insert in the box. The liner of the M1 Pro is removable, washable,
and anti-bacterial as well as coming with the pre-installed speaker, microphone, and
antennae for the SC1M comms system. When we took the M1 Pro out, the airspeed
ranged from between 120 km/h to 130 km/h while the temperature outside was 9 degrees Celsius
with the helmet’s temperature at 12 degrees Celsius. So this does make the M1 Pro a good jet helmet
for winter riding, but it’ll definitely be hot during the summer. For noise, like any other jet helmet the Schuberth
M1 Pro was about 106 decibels according to our decibel meter. Nonetheless, our rider still found the helmet
to have a quality liner that was comfortable, though it didn’t reach that same level as
the Schuberth C4 Pro. Our rider also was disappointed in the helmet’s
ventilation performance. Given the inconsistent performance of the
M1 Pro, we’ve also got a confused ranking. For material, the Schuberth gets 3 stars for
its limited shell sizes. For weight as well, though it came very close
to the boundary, the Schuberth gets 4 stars. Like the Arai and the Shoei, the M1 Pro gets
3 stars for the visor since it does not come with the pinlock insert in the box. For ventilation, the score dips a bit further
to 2 stars due to the 3 degree difference. For noise as well, this helmet gets 1 star,
though this is on par with all the jet helmets we’ve road tested here. Lastly, for comfort the M1 Pro did well, getting
another 4 stars. This ranking brings the M1 Pro to ta total
of 3 stars at about 26 Euros/star, so a similar Euro per star ranking as the Arai though it
performs half a star worse. Lastly, we come to the Shoei J-Cruise 2, the
successor to the already successful J-Cruise. This helmet comes at a recommended retail
price of about 480 Euros, or in the region of 530 US Dollars. For the outer shell, the J-Cruise 2 has Shoei’s
Advanced Integrated Matrix (AIM) shell to make it light and strong, especially considering
this helmet comes in weighing at 1370 grams in a size M, which isn’t bad too. Even better, this helmet comes in 3 shell
sizes, which is good since this means it will accommodate a wider range of sizes with a
better fitting helmet. For ventilation, there are now 3 top vents
that are all adjustable and 2 always open exhausts at the back. The visor is pinlock prepared with the pinlock
insert not in the box. Lastly, the liner is removable, washable,
anti-bacterial, and fits glasses not to mention it also fits the SENA SRL 2 comms system. We tested the J-Cruise 2 in similar conditions
to our other helmets today. The airspeed on the helmet ranged from approximately
110 km/h to about 130km/h. While the exterior temperature for the day
was 5 degrees Celsius, the interior temperature of the helmet was 6 degrees Celsius, so 1
degree hotter is not too bad. For noise, this helmet also clocked in at
106 decibels, which is the same as all our other helmets. Lastly, for the ranking now we’ve got an
optimistic looking score. For material, this helmet gets 4 stars thanks
to its 3 shell sizes and AIM outer shell. For weight as well, the J-Cruise 2 gets 5
stars. For the visor, this helmet gets 3 stars since
it doesn’t have the pinlock insert in the box. For ventilation as well, the J-Cruise 2 does
well with 4 stars again. For noise, as usual, the J-Cruise 2 gets 1
star, but this was expected. For comfort, the J-Cruise 2 did just as well
as our other helmets with 4 stars for comfort. Overall, this brings the J-Cruise 2 to a total
of 3.5 stars at 23 Euros/star, which is an excellent value for money. Now, if we compare all the helmets all together,
then we find the Arai and the Shoei perform very similarly. While the Arai does better for ventilation,
Shoei is much more value for money friendly being 3 Euros / star less than the Arai. Unfortunately, the Schuberth does lag behind
a bit by half a star overall and its results do seem to range more widely. However, Schuberth still does hold its own
in terms of comfort and visor, though it would have been nice to see this helmet perform
stronger. If you’d like to purchase the Shoei J-Cruise
2, Arai SZ-R VAS, or Schuberth M1 Pro, make sure to head to ChampionHelmets.com where
we have a lowest price guarantee and great bundle deals including discounted visors and
discounted comms systems. Overall, it seems only fair to say that we
more or less have a tie between the Shoei J-Cruise 2 and the Arai SZ-R VAS. Both helmets show a focus on different helmet
aspects and have done really well and other than the Shoei’s greater value for money
and greater convenience with an integrated sun visor, the two helmets perform about the
same. If you liked the video, make sure to subscribe
and let us know your thoughts or questions down below. I’m Sebastian from Champion Helmets and
thanks for watching!

4 Comments

  • The Shoei J-Cruise 2 is my favorite in this review. Is there a free extra visor for the j cruise 2 in your product bundle deals?

  • Can you review rhe scorpion exo-st1400 carbon?

  • How about the AGV K5 Jet. Is that a serious contender?

  • Thanks for the video. Which of these helmets are the most comfortable?

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