Shoei Neotec II Modular Helmet Review: Pros, Cons, Is It Worth It?

Shoei’s upgraded or improved model Neotec II scored high marks over several of the tests we conducted.

However, there are a few drawbacks users may be uncomfortable with. This is not to say Shoei is a bad choice.

In fact, it’s an above-average helmet that performs phenomenally in terms of comfort, ventilation, build quality, and features. It’s not cheap, though.

And if you’re worried about the price you’d have to spend, our review will help you decide. Let’s dive in!

Shoei Neotec II: Our Thoughts

Pros

  • DOT-approved safety ratings
  • Improved airflow inside the regardless of riding position
  • Cable-activated internal sun shield for longer protection
  • Lightweight but durable construction
  • Has a built-in Pinlock in the visor to prevent fogging

Cons:

  • Heavier than the average
  • Fits only long-to-medium oval head shapes
  • Small buttons for the audio system which can be hard to use when wearing gloves

What Is the Neotec II Modular Helmet?

The Neotec II is the successor of Shoei’s Neotec, designed to upgrade on the shortcomings of its predecessor.

Released in early 2018 in the United States, the Neotec II quickly became tagged as the quietest among all the premium modular helmets.

With improved aerodynamics, minimized noise inside, and ensured comfortable features, the Shoei Neotec II promises a premium quality ride experience.

Curious to know more about the features of the Neotec II? Continue reading this article to find out!

Shoei Neotec II Review: An In-Depth Look at Its Features

Safety Ratings & Overall Construction

For starters, the Neotec II is DOT-approved, so our expectations have been set high from the beginning.

The exterior shell is made of Shoei’s Multi-Ply Matrix AIM construction. This combined fiberglass with other lightweight organic and high-performance fibers.

Did you know? A motorcycle helmet with a fiberglass shell is stronger and more durable than its polycarbonate counterparts? [R]

Fiberglass types are lighter than others, and since the Neotec II is made of other high-performance fibers, it’s also flexible in terms of its impact absorption.

The only drawback of having a fiberglass construction is it’s less rigid and needs Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) in dispersing energy across the helmet shell.

Guess what! The successor of the Neotec line has various EPS foam densities tuning the impact absorption to the position of the helmet.

Not only that, but the EPS sections allow for improved airflow inside as well.

Has the Neotec II Been Tested for Safety?

ABSOLUTELY!

Of course, Shoei wouldn’t be top 1 of the safest motorcycle helmet brands for nothing, right? Well, not really.

One of the assessments for safety is called the Safety Helmet Assessment and Rating Programme (SHARP). It’s a reliable source of safety ratings as it replicates real-life accidents.

The ECE version of the Neotec II scored 4/5 stars for safety, the same rating the old Neotec got.

BUT, that does not necessarily mean that the new one did have some promised upgrades. In fact, SHARP noted that the chin guard remained locked and closed 70% of the time during testing.

Do We Think 70% Is a Good & Trustworthy Number?

Frankly, for a helmet in its caliber, we were quite disappointed. Other modular helmets scored at 100%.

The helmet is dual homologated, but we don’t advise you to ride with an open-face mode especially given the ratings received from SHARP.

On the other hand, the shape itself of the rear is designed to reduce the likelihood of injury.

Overall, we have mixed feelings about this, especially since a Shoei helmet is expected to receive higher ratings and be safer for its users.

Helmet Noise

If there’s one thing you should know about motorcycle helmets, it’s that modular types are RARELY quiet.

BUT, this is where Shoei Helmets excelled for both modular and full-face helmets.

The company put A LOT of effort into improving its aerodynamics, which in turn increased helmet stability and decreased the wind noise coming inside the helmet.

For one, the “Integrated Vortex Generator” located in the leading edge of the seam of the modular lid, between the chin bar and the main section helps with noise reduction.

Additionally, in the base area is the “Aero Deflector” which manages airflow in a variety of riding positions.

We were worried that if we started moving, a lot of the noise reduction wouldn’t work as much. But to our surprise, the noise level was minimal considering the reputation of most helmets not being as quiet.

But Wait, There‚Äôs More…

Shoei Helmets reworked the interior padding of their helmet.

With the ultimate goal of reduced noise, the cheek padding installed a technology called the “Noise Isolator”.

The mechanism involves the cheek pads minimizing the opening below the rider’s ears and then expanding slightly to fill the gap between the area to the rear of the chin curtain.

The face shield sucks into the opening of the helmet when it is closed, effectively pushing against the rubber seal.

Compared to the previous Neotec, the Neotec II has approximately 10% quieter helmet noise.

This is a huge leap given that modular is naturally noisy.

Of course, to ensure the complete protection of your ears, we still recommend you wear earplugs, especially when you’re riding at highway speeds.

Ventilation

In our personal opinion, aspiring to create an excellent helmet is a balancing act between maintaining minimized noise while ensuring there’s still enough air to breathe in.

The Neotec II has an improved ventilation system with tons of air that doesn’t make you feel like you have to breathe twice as hard as you would like if you were wearing a face mask.

To regulate the air, there is a single chin bar vent that provides direct cooling to your face.

Have we mentioned that it also helps in defogging your face shield?

Not only that but there is also an exhaust vent above your eyebrows and a three-position top vent that feeds the rear vent.

The chin vent is easily adjustable, while the upper vent takes some pressure to move because it lacks a dent to push from.

The entire helmet is designed in a wind tunnel to keep it aerodynamic, PLUS the vents are pretty easy to operate even with gloves on. We’d say the wind tunnel design marks for a HUGE win.

The only downside is the internal sun visor doesn’t have a city position, so riders opt to use the cracked open position instead to ensure ventilation.

Visor

Visors are one of the most important parts a helmet can have, especially when the sun is low.

According to Shoei, the integrated sun visor is designed to give a better “weather seal” and minimize optical distortion. PLUS, it offers 99% UV resistance with decent coverage.

Not to mention, the company also supplies the Pinlock Evo, which is their top-of-the-line version working effectively with their visor.

At the press of a button, the Pinlock visor slides down. Regardless of whether you’re fighting against wet weather or riding on a really really bright sunny day, the anti-fog visor has your back.

The great thing is, you don’t have to buy the visor separately from the helmet itself, as is often the case with other premium helmets.

However, there’s a lack of a cracked open position, which doesn’t allow much freedom for the rider especially if you’re in an unfortunately humid place.

All in all, the Shoei Neotec II scores above average, since it does all the expected functions but falls slightly short of the standard for a premium-priced helmet.

Chin Guard

On the brighter side, the chin bar mechanism utilizes a stainless steel locking mechanism to ensure the safety of the riders.

BUT!

The chin bar shares an axis with the helmet’s face shield and locking mechanism, which we personally think is a bad move.

When it comes to chin guards, we would give the Neotec II a below-average mark upfront.

As mentioned above, SHARP noted that the chin bar only remains fully closed 70% of the time, and with its price range, it’s disappointing when we talk about price value.

What’s even worse is the predecessor of the helmet scored higher at 83%, which was odd seeing that Shoei’s new helmet model was supposedly an upgraded version.

The chin bar is easy to operate, even with gloves, and a rider can have a comfortable ride with the chin bar raised up to around 50mph.

However, the safety of the rider comes first before comfort. This is why we felt the Neotec II doesn’t get a passing grade in terms of the chin guard.

Helmet Sizing, Fit, and Aesthetics

Shoei Helmets are branded for producing comfortable helmets, and Neotec II is not an exception.

The Neotec II weighs 1.8kg. Although it’s a little on the heavier side, the experience and comfort inside the helmet more than make up for it.

The cheek pads wick away sweat AND reduce wind and noise. PLUS, it doesn’t create pressure points against the face.

It’s an excellent mark for Shoei on this aspect seeing as to how the wind and noise inside the helmet remain at healthy levels for the ear.

For people who enjoy riding in the fast line, that could be considered a win!

Note: If you want a more secure fit, make sure to use the chin strap and adjust accordingly.

As for the fit, it caters to a long to medium oval head shape. If you don’t think it fits you, you can always opt for a different size and adjust using cheek pads to improve the overall fit.

What Are the Available Colors and Sizes of the Helmet?

Aside from the usual matte black, the Neotec II also comes in the following designs:

  • Jaunt TC-1, Jaunt TC-5, Jaunt TC-7
  • Winsome TC-1, Winsome TC-6
  • Respect TC-1, Respect TC-5, Respect TC-10
  • Separator TC-3, Separator TC-5, Separator TC-10
  • Splicer TC-2, Splicer TC-6, Splicer TC-8

If you are the type of person who’s not into flashy designs, Shoei Helmets also has minimalist designs. These are the following solid colors available:

  • Anthracite Metallic
  • Matte Deep Grey
  • Matte Blue Metallic
  • Light Silver
  • Black
  • White
  • Wine Red

Originally, there are three shell sizes available for the Shoei Neotic II, but in the United States, it now has four, ranging from XS-XXL.

Communication System

If there is one thing we would vouch for about the Neotec II, it’s their comms. The communication system of the Neotec comes in the form of the Sena SRL, short for Shoei Rider Link.

The Sena system is the Bluetooth communication system designed by Sena tailor-fitted for Neotec II.

Although it requires manual installation, at most, the installation requires only around 15 minutes, which is quite fast even for a beginner.

What’s great about the Sena SRL is it fits snuggly AND it doesn’t add to the noise. Other universal mount systems would also stick out on the sides, making it awkward for the rider.

The buttons of the Sena SRL are snug on the left side of the Neotec II. Have we mentioned that it also recognizes voice commands?

The operating system of the Sena SRL can be controlled through a variety of clicks on the three buttons, but it also responds to “Hello, Sena” followed by a command.

PLUS, the speakers are powerful enough even when you’re wearing earplugs. This is a great feature especially for those who prefer listening to music while riding.

Can I Still Use Third-Party Systems?

Of course! The Shoei Neotec II can still function well with other audio systems.

BUT, please remember that the installation will not go quite as smoothly as the Sena SRL.

The fit might also be compromised a little. It’s not completely impossible, but it will take some trial and error before you have a comfortable position for your audio system.

Miscellaneous Features: Warranty, Glasses, and Build Quality

An allowance for glasses is also an important feature – regardless if it’s a modular or a full-face helmet.

There are just days when the sun shield won’t be enough to cover the glare of the sun, and you need sunglasses to navigate the road.

The Shoei Neotec II has a groove for the stems of your glasses. Now, you won’t have to worry about having to wear contact lenses or being uncomfortable with the awkward position of the stems.

In terms of the build quality, everything has a premium feel. All the materials used are of sound quality. The mechanisms are flawless, too.

But, in terms of quality control, there are lots of things to be improved.

Lastly, the Shoei Neotec II has a warranty of five years.

Shoei Helmets Not for You? Check These Good Alternatives Instead

#1 AGV Compact ST

This is a modular helmet that rivals the Neotec II in terms of minimizing wind noise. The major difference is it has an excellent SHARP safety rating.

Compared to the materials used in other helmets, the thermoplastic shell of the Compact ST just means it’s not as durable as those made with polycarbonate, and it’s a lot heavier too.

If you are looking for a quiet helmet that can stay locked 100% of the time, you’ve found the perfect one for you.

#2 Caberg Duke II Modular Crash Helmet

The Duke II has a lot of similarities with the Neotec II, like having a double visor and anti-scratch visor with a pin lock.

Aside from that, the internal part also contains a removable and washable liner, paired with great ventilation, and ready wiring channels for a communication system.

What’s different in the Duke II is it has reflective inserts at the back of the neck.

This safety feature would keep riders safe at night if you’re someone who likes riding at night and using wide roads alongside larger vehicles.

#3 Schuberth C3 Pro

If you’re a daredevil driver who prefers to engage in motorcycle sports, then this is the best helmet for you.

It’s lighter than other helmets and has an excellent build. Like the Neotec II, it’s also made of fiberglass and promises a 5-year warranty.

However, it’s also obtained a 3-star rating from SHARP, which is also quite disappointing given its price. The ventilation is also average.

If you’re a daredevil driver who prefers to engage in motorcycle sports, then this is the best helmet for you.

It’s lighter than other helmets and has an excellent build. Like the Neotec II, it’s also made of fiberglass and promises a 5-year warranty.

However, it’s also obtained a 3-star rating from SHARP, which is also quite disappointing given its price. The ventilation is also average.

It claims to be one of the quietest in the world and comes with a clear external visor. Remember to keep the chin curtain in place as it reduces the sounds produced below.

Verdict

Given its price range, we can say the Neotec II has a lot of improving to do. The simple fact that it only got 70% in SHARP ratings speaks volumes.

Nevertheless, we still enjoy using this helmet and a lot of riders feel the same way too. If you own the old Neotec model, should you upgrade?

That depends. If you can look past the chin guard below-average score and don’t mind that your helmet isn’t completely quiet, we’d say to go for it.

The price may be slightly steeper than most, but there’s no denying Shoei’s build quality, comfort, comm system, ventilation, and visor system still make it a pleasure to wear for daily use.

We hope you enjoyed reading our honest review of the Shoei Neotec II helmet. Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!