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We've compared four of the top modular helmets available on the market over the past few weeks and have put it all together for you with short summaries on each. We'll briefly go over the pros and cons of the Nolan N104, Shoei Neotec, Bell Revolver Evo, and HJC RPHA Max, and give you our thoughts to help you to make an educated and informed decision on your purchase.

What is a modular helmet? A modular helmet is basically the same as a normal street helmet, with the added benefit of a flip up chin bar. Initially popular among the adventure tourers and long distance travelers, you'll find all types of riders wearing these helmets now. The key to their success is the versatility. With the chin bar down, it performs the same as a regular street helmet. With the chin bar up, it makes it easier to put on glasses, is less intimidating to other motorists or gate guards, and easier to read GPS/maps with the chin bar out of the way.

Nolan N104



• Fit: Neutral to narrow
• Weight: 3 lbs. 13-1/2 oz (L)
• Safety: DOT/ECE w/P/J approval
P/J approval allows the motorcyclist to ride the vehicle both with open and closed chin guard, in compliance with the current legislation in force.
• MSRP $449.95
• Shell: Composite

Full Nolan N104 Review

Pros:
• Build quality is outstanding and what we’ve come to expect from Nolan
• Excellent ventilation
• The paint and graphic quality is superb for a mass production helmet
• Massive eye port for some of the best optics in its class
• Aerodynamically efficient even with the chin bar raised
• The only one to achieve a rating higher than DOT​
• Pinlock ready shield and Pinlock fog-free insert included​

Cons:
• The internal sun visor is spring loaded with only up or down, there is no in between. Also, the nose cutout is a bit overdone and can be distracting.
• With excellent ventilation comes noise. The N104 is fairly loud at speed.
• Uses a “microlock” chin strap. It works and has passed all safety tests, but some riders may prefer the tried and true standard D-ring retainer.​

Overall:
The Nolan N104 is a massive step up from the ever popular N90 and N103 modular helmets. It's obvious Nolan has developed the N104 from years of knowledge in building previous modular helmets. With the only modular helmet we reviewed to achieve an ECE rating, the N104 can be considered the safest of them all.



Shoei Neotec



• Fit: Neutral
• Weight: 3 lbs. 15-7/8 oz (L)
• Safety: DOT
• MSRP $648.99 solid/$662.99 metallic
• Shell: AIM multi-composite

Full Shoei Neotec Review

Pros:
• The perfect modular flip-up helmet. The Neotec includes everything one would require of a modular helmet and more
• Easiest internal sun visor shield operation of the bunch with a shield that encompasses the rider’s field of vision for no distractions while down
• Shoei quality. Can’t go wrong with a Shoei branded helmet
• Outstanding ventilation while still keeping internal noise levels to a minimum
• The Neotec includes a Pinlock Fog Resistant shield and clear Pinlock insert
• Five year warranty included

Cons:
• With perfection comes a price - this is the most expensive of the four reviewed
• At a hair under 4 lbs, the weight of the helmet becomes noticeable when compared with the others while riding

Overall:
There’s no question you could buy two or three cheaper helmets for the same price as the Neotec, but will you be as satisfied with the build quality and features? That’s up to you.



HJC RPHA-Max



• Fit: Slightly Narrow
• Weight: 3 lbs. 9-1/8 oz (L)
• Safety: DOT
• MSRP $459.99 solid, $464.99 metallic/matte, $499.99 (Align graphic)
• Shell: Composite – Carbon Fiber, Aramid, Fiberglass, Organic non-woven fabric

Full HJC RPHA-Max Review

Pros:
• The lightest modular helmet we reviewed. Saves weight with a single pivot point for both the flip up chin bar and external shield and carbon composite shell
• Three shell sizes give the helmet excellent proportions. A small head size isn't going to be stuffing their head into 30mm of padding.
• Carry over technology from the RPHA10 developed on track resulting in premium build quality, ventilation, and aerodynamics
• Ventilation is quite good while staying relatively quiet with extensive wind tunnel testing

Cons:
• The HJC Symax 3 is still available, and much cheaper
• Does not include HJC’s RapidFire shield removal system and the new way is not as refined
• Center shield lock is harder to use with thick winter/heated gloves

Overall:
A quality lid from HJC and steps up to the plate against the tried and true Nolan N series modular helmets. However, perhaps it’s worst competition is it’s older brother, the Symax 3, a cheaper modular helmet by HJC. But put them on one after the other, and it’s clear the RPHA-Max is far superior in every way and worth the extra pennies, it’s just hard to see that on a computer screen.



Bell Revolver Evo



• Fit: Intermediate Oval
• Weight: 3 lbs. 14 oz (L)
• Safety: DOT
• MSRP $199.95
• Shell: Polycarbonate

Full Bell Revolver Evo Review

Pros:
• Reuses same external shield seen on the Star, RS-1, and Vortex so you can use Bell’s popular transition shield
• Five year warranty included
• Bell exclusive Magnefusion magnetic strap keeper
• Integrated speaker pockets
• Extremely stable at speed

Cons:
• Modular mechanism isn’t as refined as the more expensive models
• One of the noisiest helmets we reviewed in comparison to the others
• Only one of the four to use a polycarbonate shell

Overall:
With the initial Revolver being Bell’s first step into the modular helmet market in 2011, the Bell Revolver Evo is a refresh of the original fixing key customer issues. At a price that doesn’t break the bank, the Revolver is a decent helmet. However, while you will get a solid helmet, you won’t get the refined and developed modular features that you would with the other brands that have been in the modular market longer.



Tell us what you think in a post below!

If you'd like to place an order for any one of these helmets, or would like more information, feel free to give Brad a call at 866.931.6644 ext. 810 or shoot him a message through this forum. Is email more convenient? Send those to FORUM at RIDERSDISCOUNT dot COM and we’ll get back to you right away!
 
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