Published on March 11th, 2017 | by Greg0
Smith Optics Quantum Helmet: Sleek & Stylish With MIPS
Just when you think that skiing and snowboarding season might be coming to a close in the Northeastern US, the weather does another turn, and a storm strikes. Today in New York City, it wasn’t quite a blizzard, but the sort of day when you’re tempted to wear a helmet simply when you are walking down the street due to ice and slick surfaces. If you’re in the market for serious head protection- the kind built specifically to handle rough conditions, high speeds, and tough slopes.
The Quantum helmet from Smith Optics is one of their top-of-the-line models, new for 2017, with plenty of features- like speaker compatibility for use with the Outdoor Tech Wireless Audio CHIPS Bluetooth system, lots of ventilation vents (22 in fact), MIPS protection (more on that later), and even a sophisticated chinstrap called the Fidlock. The buckle is magnetic, designed to be opened with one hand, even with gloves on, and unlike more traditional buckles, you don’t need to worry about the fastener pinching. Even the liner is custom, called the XT2, with a sweat-wicking material that helps keeps your head dry.
We’ve seen plenty of Smith Optics gear over the years, both of the actual optical variety and previous helmets. But we’ve seen nothing like the Quantum, which uses a bombsheel ABS outer layer, as well as Smith’s Aerocore and Koroyd layer that looks like a honeycomb and can offer protection at any temperature without fear of shattering or weakening. Another layer, a low-friction one, is what provides ‘multi-directional impact protection system’ or MIPS- which you might have heard about before, and is a pretty important addition that is quickly becoming a must-have for more serious professionals worried about the risks of rotational stress.
The Quantum takes every recent advance and combines them into one, with 14 of those climate control vents easily adjustable to help keep you comfortable, plenty of cozy padding, removable earpads, easy goggle integration and compatibility. Fit seemed true-to-size, with options ranging from small to extra-large, and there is a dial at the rear for manual modifications, the Boa FS360 system that you may have seen on other helmets including bicycle ones. Plus, it still manages to look sharp, not too bulky, with a sleek profile. It’s not the lightest out there, but the tradeoffs are the additional features. The only issue that might be noted is the price tag- the Smith Quantum runs $300, in black, green, or white, a price tag commensurate with it’s skill set.