Alpinestars SM10 helmet review - an ADV perspective

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by BruceWayne, Jan 15, 2020.

  1. BruceWayne

    BruceWayne Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2017
    Oddometer:
    134
    I made the decision to get a more dirt oriented helmet to help in the high temperatures we see in Australia during summer. While my Nexx XD-1 is a decent helmet in some aspects, the ventilation isn't enough for off road riding when temps are north of 30 degrees Celcius. Given all the reviews of the SM10 are from a MX rider's view, I thought a write up that takes ADV riding into account might help some folks here.

    I settled on the SM10 based on a few factors - I wanted the protection of MIPS, low weight, ventilation and, of course, fit.

    Comfort is really good. Although not as low in weight as some of Airoh's offerings, it's quite light and very well balanced. I feel no neck strain at all after a long day of bouncing across crappy terrain, unlike the Nexx. Only negative I've encountered is sore ears after about 5 or 6 hours in the lid, at this point in time the top of my ears start to get a little sore. Nothing major but also not something I've experienced with other helmets.

    Ventilation is worlds above what you get in ADV style lids, even if you're using them with goggles. The helmet definitely makes riding in high temperatures and avoiding heat stroke a lot more viable. The downside is that you lose the ability to close vents in rain or cold weather.

    Noise isn't as bad as I thought it would be. Up to about 90km/h it's quite similar to the Nexx but gets a little noisier above that speed. Still manageable and I have no issues doing smaller slab stretches. I wear earplugs with this as I do with any helmet.

    The visor was another area I thought might be a problem. Although designed as a MX lid, it seems pretty aerodynamic. Even at freeway speeds, I've only had it being caught in the wind a little when there are very high head or cross winds.

    Fit and finish is great. The carbon fibre weave looks quite nice and decals, etc are all finished off to a very high standard. Although I've only been using it a few months, mine's not yet showing any signs of wear and tear.

    There's a channel behind the cheekpads on either side where you can place the hose of a hydration pack. It makes it much easier to reach the nozzle when off road but unless you have a long hose to work with, it can be quite awkward getting it set up and makes taking the helmet on and off more of a chore.

    While not as versatile as an ADV lid, I've really enjoyed using the SM10 and choose it above the Nexx for rides more often than I thought I would. It's definitely not the best choice for cold weather, nor for freeway work but is an awesome option in warmer climes where the focus is offroad.
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