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Wonderful helmet - Cacy TX
Recommended by Reviewer: Yes
Pros: Awesome color, great price, lighter than most helmets
Cons: Visor lock a little stiff at first
I decided that for a new season I was going to pick a new helmet and this one caught my eye. I've always been a fan of biomech design, so naturally I wanted my helmet to have the design. I had tested the helmet at a local shop, and I will say that the sizing is different from model to model. I tried one of the Airmada helmets and a large was what fit well. I tried a large on with the alliance model and it fit loose around my head. I can't say for sure if this will be the experience for everyone, but a medium fits for me fine. Speaking of fit, the first thing I noticed was the lighter load on my neck. My other helmet was a scorpion ex400 and not only was it big but also weight more. The pads fit well even new so I imagine them molding nicely as I get more riding in. The only problem I have so far with the helmet is that the visor lock is stiff at first. As you open and close the visor, it loosens up but eh...whatever.Overall, I would recommend this helmet to other people, especially since it's on sale and they still have them in stock.
Better than expected - nWo4Life
Recommended by Reviewer: Yes
Pros: Light, quality, shield lock, vents
Cons: No chin curtain, cumbersome shield changing, annoying liner installation
I was originally looking at the Bell Vortex since it's arguably the best helmet in its price point, but I was concerned about all the reviews about how noisy it is. After finding the Alliance on closeout in the Speedmetal graphic, I took a chance on the Alliance and I'm really glad I did. Here's whyIt's exceptionally comfortable. It fits very snug out of the box. I went with an XL and should be at the smaller end of needing an XL. But it's actually extremely snug. I don't want to use the word tight because it's not too small, it's just very very snug. It's all from the cheek pads. It has potential to break in very, very nicely but time will tell. If not, I love this helmet so much I will try thinner pads if that's what it comes to. The inside is plush. Very soft. Much nicer than my Bell Revolver Evo.The view is excellent. Can barely see any of the helmet on the sides. Vertically is far and away better than other helmets I've tried. The shield is described as anti-fog, but will fog a little at the bottom if closed while standing still. I couldn't actually fog it on purpose by breathing directly on it, though. It gets the job done well enough, way better than my Bell, but you'll still want to crack it or open it at red lights. The shield automatically locks when closed completely. Theres no latch or lever, it just takes slightly more force to open than other helmets. Not enough to be annoying. It's a really nice feature that makes you wonder why can't all helmets do it like thatVentilation is excellent. The chin vent is huge and very easy to open and close with gloves. Head vents are easy as well and can be opened halfway if desired. There are also 2 internal cheek vents that can not be opened or closed while wearing the helmet. They'll add some noise but the extra ventilation is worth it.One thing I read about with this helmet is the difficulty of changing the shield. Some people complained it takes 10 minutes or more. Here's the most honest review you'll see about changing the face shield It's definitely more difficult than other helmets. Difficult isn't the right word. It's just more time consuming. Where changing a Bell or Shoei takes seconds, Icon's system takes about 2 minutes, with a minute and a half of that time coming from the side plates. My biggest struggle was removing them. It takes so much force to remove them, I was scared they would break. But there's no trick to them. You just have to force it till they pop off. Luckily reinstalling them is as easy as popping them back into place. And you cant just leave them off. It whistles unbearably without them due to the exposed holes in the shield. A non-sideplate versionof the proshield from Icon would be a welcome accessory. Overall removing the shield isn't difficult, it's just not as simple as Bell. You have to actually watch what you're doing instead of just click and off comes the shield. Don't let whiny reviews about the shield deter you from buying this helmet. It's not that hard.I got the speedmetal graphic in blue. It looks awesome, but it's a deeper blue than the pictures show. I can't blame CompAcc since it's the same picture on every website. Because it's darker than expected, the graphics don't pop at all and that's a shame because the pattern is awesome. It might look better in some other colors, but in blue, the graphics are quite understated. I still think it's awesome, but was hoping for a brighter blue like it looks online.I do have 2 negatives for this helmet. First, it really needs a chin curtain, especially for its price. I'm willing to let that go because I got the helmet on closeout. Lack of a chin curtain at the closeout price is more forgivable, but at full price, you deserve a chin curtain. Amazingly enough, even without it, it's still quieter than it's main competitor the Vortex.Second is reinstalling the cheek pads after removing them is unnecessarily difficult. It took me about 10 minutes to get them back in straight, the way they were out of the box. They don't just snap back in, they also get tucked up into the bottom of the helmet. No matter what i did, one side was always closer to the front than the other. It took me 10 minutes of doing it over and over again until it was mostly even. I still don't have it perfect. For all those people who whined about the shield changing, the real difficulty is in the cheek pads. It's a major pain and I don't want to do it ever again. Sadly, I'll have to eventually.Overall quality is excellent. It's really well made and very sturdy. Nothing feels cheap or rushed. If you're torn between the Alliance and the Vortex, I think the Alliance will provide a better fit, is lighter and quieter. The Vortex will be quicker and easier to customize and clean as far as shield changes and liner removal and installation. If performance while on the bike is paramount to all other features for you, get the Alliance.