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Old 09-17-2010, 09:56 AM   #1
Chillson OP
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Shoei Hornet vs Arai XD3 vs...

Okay, I've gone through all of the posts here in the equipment thread, but I cannot find a comparison/"which is better" thread for these adventure helmets.

I'm in the market and want to be as informed as possible when I make my purchase.

Quite simply, which one is better for you and why did you choose it?

Likes/Dislikes?

Pictures are always great!

Thanks,
Chillson
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Old 09-17-2010, 11:22 AM   #2
Shredahead
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I'd say you have to go which the one that fits better ultimately. That said I went through the exersize earlier this year. I ended up with the Shoei. I think for sure it has better vetilation than the Arai hands down. Also seems like the wind flows through the slots in the visor better on the Shoei and you get less of the wind grabbing the visor. Both helmets fit me really well so fit was equal. The only negative I can come up with on the Hornet is the windscreen options are limited. I think they only make the clear and a light tint screen. I wish they had a dark tint option like the XD3 does, but not a big deal, the ventilation was the biggest thing for me. Love the helmet and I do take the visor on and off depending on how much fast highway riding I'm doing but always miss the visors sun protection when its off. The helmet is actually quieter than my Shoei RF1000 surprisingly. Also wish the screws were metal instead of plastic but I have not had an issue. I ended up with the Hornet Sonora(graphic design model) I found on sale as oppossed to the solid helmet, think competionaccessories.com had it for around $350.
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Old 09-17-2010, 01:00 PM   #3
Mr_Adventure
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Just bought an Airoh S4 from ebay, shipped from the UK with two visors (dark/clear) for $275. Very cool lid, fits and functions very well.
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Old 09-17-2010, 01:11 PM   #4
bretedge
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I had to make this same decision last year when I bought my bike. I was impressed with the quality and workmanship of both helmets. I tried both on and wore them around the shop for at least 15 minutes each. Bottom line, the Shoei fit my strangely shaped grape better than the Arai, so I bought it. I've been riding with it now for over a year and my only complaint is that the plastic screws that hold on the visor come out too easily. I fixed it by replacing them with metal ones and it hasn't been an issue. All in all, very happy with the Shoei.
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Old 09-17-2010, 03:14 PM   #5
Chillson OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sshred@earthlink.net
I ended up with the Hornet Sonora(graphic design model) I found on sale as oppossed to the solid helmet, think competionaccessories.com had it for around $350.
Wow, thanks for the website! They have killer prices.

Thanks for all the responses. I'm in the same boat, both helmets fit my head nicely. I liked the shield on the Arai better, it felt a lot more sturdy opening and closing, but I've heard that the visor catches the wind more than the Hornet. I'm leaning more and more toward the Hornet, especially because it sounds to me like it is a quieter helmet and is more suitable for freeway speed. *no pun intended*
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Old 09-17-2010, 03:20 PM   #6
VEGASGSA
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Arai fits my narrow longer melon better,,,it is close though for me...the Shoei didn't fit bad..just not QUITE as well straight outta da box...

I don't notice any more real wind noiise with the XD3 versus my older Quantum...and to be honest it has to be a hell of a cross wind to be uncomfortable as far as the visor goes..

All about the fit!! try them ALL on before ordering...

Dirt Rider did a hell ofa test on skid lids...oddly...the two helmets with price tags north of 450-500$ did NOT win the shoot out...just a thought...

Cheers
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Old 09-17-2010, 09:25 PM   #7
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I bought a Shoei Hornet (Sonora for $345 from Revzilla) because Shoei's tend to fit my head perfectly. If it had been the Joe Rocket, Icon, HJC, etc that fit best, I'd be wearing that right now.
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Old 09-18-2010, 09:17 AM   #8
D K
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In the same boat at the moment.
BMW also makes a pretty cool enduro helmet. Anyone have experience with that one?


D
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Old 09-18-2010, 09:53 AM   #9
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Same as above (only I'm an Arai user). Fit is the key. Both are great lids.

Both the Shoei and the Arai fit my melon fine. While on my head, the Shoei felt a little more front heavy. The Arai was perfectly balanced on the crown of my head. This, and no complaints with my two prior Arai helmets, made my decision easier.

I have heard the Shoei may vent better. This was not as big of a deal for me (despite riding in 100+ heat here in the CA valley). This is because my GS has a large windscreen, so forced ventilation is pretty well muted.

Both helmets aren't great in cold. I've ridden with my XD3 in sub freezing weather before. It is bearable with the right gear (balaclava, etc) but neither will insulate as well as many other lids.
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Old 09-18-2010, 10:33 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Just_Jake
Both helmets aren't great in cold. I've ridden with my XD3 in sub freezing weather before. It is bearable with the right gear (balaclava, etc) but neither will insulate as well as many other lids.
Ain't that the truth.

I've had both and I'm squarely in the Arai camp. I've found the "peak" on the Hornet to be too small and is at such an angle that it's basically useless. I think it's more decorative than anything else. The Arai "peak" sits down lower and more like a baseball cap. I can actually use it to block the Sun.

If a Shoei fits you better, I'd skip the Hornet and go with a regular Shoei full-face. If you shop, you can get a really nice Shoei full-face for a lot less than a Hornet.
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Old 09-18-2010, 04:06 PM   #11
CodyY
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Love my xd. And mines the original version. The only problem is now my visor wont stay up, hopefully I just need the little plastic dealios replaced.
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Old 09-18-2010, 04:24 PM   #12
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Had the original XD and hated it. Way loud, the visor wasn't well thought out, bulky.

Went to the Hornet, the fit is definitely more to my liking and it doesn't have the inherent design flaws that make the XD too loud imo. The neck roll, visor, and screen design are low drag for wind noise and buffeting. I've logged thousands of miles with the Hornet on my SE, plenty of extended high speed riding and it's quiet and comfortable. The SE manages wind very well though. Never had any issues with cold, I run a rukka balaclava when it's real cold and it seals up everything.

That said, I just picked up a new XD3 for a friend and it looks like a nice helmet, the padding is much nicer than my Hornet and it looks like Arai dealt with the vibrating visor. Still looks like a globe to me though.
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Old 09-20-2010, 09:06 AM   #13
Chillson OP
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Thanks for all of the advice!

I'm still trying to decide but it sounds to me like I won't make a bad decision with either the Hornet or the XD3. I've got a regular full-face for the colder temps, but it sure would be nice to have a visor to shield the sun.

Also, I just have the stock windscreen and am 5'11", will that make a difference at highway speeds with the visor?
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Old 09-23-2010, 07:20 AM   #14
speed_kills
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I think both are great helmets and you can't go wrong either way (Arai TourX user here).

But if you are not in a rush, maybe you can also consider the upcoming X-Lite enduro helmet (by Nolan) that will be launched soon. I've seen pictures and it looks very well-made just like the XD3/Hornet. But unlike the XD3/Hornet, the X-Lite has extras like an inner sun visor and option for Bluetooth headset.

speed_kills screwed with this post 09-23-2010 at 07:28 AM
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Old 09-23-2010, 07:35 AM   #15
EnderTheX
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I love my Shoei! I chose it based on fit, it fits my huge head perfectly.

It has great ventilation and good weather resistance. The noise is OK but not great so I usually wear plugs for longer rides.


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