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Choosing a Modular Helmet with Bluetooth, Tested and Reviewed

Bluetooth modular motorcycle helmets have three things riders want – versatility, safety, and integrated comms. 

If you’re not familiar with them, modular helmets lift up from the chin bar and turn a full-face helmet into an open-face helmet. This is super useful when you need to have a chat with someone, get fuel, or get a nice blast of cool air onto your face. 

In terms of safety, it’s worth noting that there isn’t a single modular helmet that comes with a Snell certification. When you check out their website, there isn’t even an option to check for modulars! (1)

The Bilt Techno 3.0 modular helmet with chinbar lifted.
The Bilt Techno 3.0 – our top pick in this category. Image Source: Cycle Gear

Don’t let that concern you a whole bunch. You’re still getting a helmet that should keep you safe in the event of a crash when you get a DOT- and ECE-certified modular. 

With that, let’s check out:

  • The Editor’s pick of the best Bluetooth modular helmet
  • The Runner Up to the best Bluetooth modular helmet
  • The Best Bluetooth-ready modular helmet
  • The Budget Option Bluetooth modular helmet from Sena
  • Affordable Bell and a Torc Bluetooth modular helmets

Sena Impulse – The Best Modular Bluetooth Helmet

The Sena Impulse launched in 2022 and quickly rose to the top spot for modular bluetooth motorcycle helmets. The Impulse is a premium lid in every sense, from its construction to its electronics. Let’s dive in.

Sena Impulse modular helmet in white
The Sena Impulse is a premium lid containing powerful communications technology.

The Outside

The Sena Impulse builds on Sena’s previous forays in to the Bluetooth helmet category, with a sleek and well-ventilated lid. You’ll find a reinforced chin strap with a quick release buckle (instead of the traditional D-ring) to hold the helmet on. This helmet features two large vents, one on the chin and one on the top. The shell is constructed from composite fiberglass, a generally well-respected material for its flexibility and durability in crashes. The helmet weighs in at just 1,720g or 3.79 lbs, very light for a modular with integrated Bluetooth.

Many reviewers note the helmet’s intermediate oval fit is similar to the Shoei Neotec 2, a more expensive helmet without any Bluetooth pre-installed. Reviewers also note you may want to go up a size, as buyers found the standard sizing was too tight.

Finally, Sena included a customizable taillight on the rear of this helmet – an amazing feature increasing your visibility for riders and drivers coming up behind you.

Nice touch that Sena included a taillight on this helmet. Riders can choose from a set of flash patterns, or leave it off.

The Inside

As for the innards on this lid, you’ll find premium removable padding as you’d expect from a high-end helmet. You’ll also find an integrated sun visor operable from a lever on the left underside of the helmet, and a Pinlock-ready clear visor that locks in to place in the down position (you also get a Pinlock antifog visor in the box!). The chinbar lifts up with a button underneath the center front of the helmet. And reviewers note that all the mechanisms are easy to find and operate with gloves on.

There’s a small chin curtain – a luxury on many modulars – that helps to seal out wind noise. A few reviewers did complain about excessive wind noise in this lid at high speeds, but that assessment was far from the norm. However, one noted he listens to audiobooks at 80 mph with the clear visor up and has no issues with wind noise.

The Bluetooth

The Bluetooth communications kit on this helmet is where it truly shines. Sena included their best electronics to date in this lid, with Bluetooth 5.0 supporting up to 4 riders over 2 km / 1.2 miles of range and Mesh 2.0 supporting virtually unlimited riders over 8 km / 5 miles of range when over 6 people are in the group. You’ll find a few buttons to control the integrated unit on the left side of the helmet.

The sound equipment in this helmet breaks new ground, as Sena has partnered with renowned sound company Harman Kardon to produce and tune the speakers and microphone for their comms and entertainment system. Reviewers say this is not just a brand flex, and that “the sound is so much better than anything else” (2). The helmet boasts a stunning 18 hours of battery life on Bluetooth and 11 hours when using Mesh. Of course this unit also connects to your phone for music and GPS, and supports voice activation with Siri and Google Assistant.

The only complaints on electronics are around problems updating the lid over Wifi and the unique magnetic charger, which while convenient to use is annoying to replace if lost.

Our Assessment

The Sena Impulse is a premium modular helmet with stellar Bluetooth integration, making it a great choice for any rider looking for the a great combination of safety, comfort, and technology in a lid.

Bilt Techno 3.0 – The Runner-Up to Best Modular Bluetooth Helmet

The Bilt Techno 3.0 is our pick for runner up to the best modular Bluetooth motorcycle helmet, and winner of the category prior to 2022. It was launched in 2021 as an upgrade to the Techno 2.0 and we’re in no doubt about the improvements to the Bluetooth system. 

The Bilt Techno 3.0 is a simple yet powerful lid at an affordable price. Image Source: Cycle Gear

The Outside

Starting from the outside, it’s made from “injection molded alloy composite”, which – as far as we can tell (1) – is a fancy type of plastic. There are two shell sizes, with the first covering XS-2XL and then 3XL – 5XL. 

Those sizes do tend to run small, as noted in some recent reviews (2) and in the YouTube review by Motorcycling with Carl (6). Our top tip: Get the size up from whatever you measure on their size chart. 

On to the venting, you get:

  • A chin vent
  • A vent at the top of your head

Both of which you can open and close – and there are two rear vents. 

One reviewer wrote, “Could use some additional venting, gets pretty hot in stop and go traffic during the afternoon commute, tempted to flip up the modular portion” (2). Worth taking note if you’re riding in really hot conditions.  

Profile shot of the Bilt Techno 3.0
Controls are neatly tucked in to the side of this helmet. Image Source: Cycle Gear

The Inside

Under the shell, you get EPS foam, which is exactly as you’d expect. There’s also a removable lining made of moisture-wicking material that can be washed when the sweat builds up. 

The Bilt Techno 3.0 also comes with an integrated sun visor; handy on all-day rides or when you’re commuting around the city. The lever to drop it down is on the left behind the chin bar hinges – once you’re used to the position it’s super easy to use. 

To lift up the chin bar and take advantage of the modular feature, you actually have to push up a lever on the outside of the helmet. They’ve moved the mechanism from the inside on the 2.0 and added a chin curtain, making the helmet a bit quieter.

The visor sits in four positions and forms a decent seal which should keep out some wind noise. It’s also Pinlock ready but you need to buy the right lens separately.

The Bluetooth

The helmet specs are pretty standard for a mid-range lid, but it’s the Bluetooth that you’re here for, right? 

The unit in the Techno 3.0 is a Sena DWO-6 which is equivalent to the stand-alone Sena 10R kits. That means you get: 

  • Bluetooth 4.1 with better battery life than 3.0
  • A battery with a 10 hour talk time
  • 1,000-meter range with connections to up to four riders
  • An iOS and Android app with upgradeable firmware

You can use the fully integrated set to make and receive calls, listen to music, take GPS directions, intercom with your riding buddies – as long as they all have a Sena set – and listen to FM radio. Pairing with your phone is really easy, too. 

In terms of quality, some users say the speakers can be a little quiet, but the overall sentiment is summed up with this review: “Phone calls are clear on both receiving and transmitting end and radio and nav synchronizing was a snap” (2). 

Our Assessment

The Bilt Techno 3.0 is a solid Bluetooth-enabled modular motorcycle helmet at a fair price. It’s road-safe and DOT-certified, and the Bluetooth is great quality. 

HJC i90 Solid Modular – The Best Bluetooth-Ready Modular Motorcycle Helmet

When you don’t want to commit to an integrated Bluetooth kit, we recommend the HJC i90. It’s Bluetooth-ready and there’s even a specially designed kit from Sena that fits right in. 

the HJC i90 helmet
A gorgeous lid from a top helmet manufacturer. Image Source: HJC

The Outside

The HJC i90 modular Bluetooth helmet is made from polycarbonate – a basic plastic – and comes in sizes XS – 2XL with ECE and DOT certification. However, ECE is all about slim size, so the 3-5XL sizes are only DOT certified. There are three shells covering all those sizes, which is good for the price range.

In terms of vents, there are two – on the chin and at the top of the helmet, both of which close.

The Inside

Right under the shell is the EPS foam to absorb any knocks you’ll take. The other internal details include:

  • A moisture-wicking, antibacterial lining that’s easy to wash
  • Interchangeable cheek pads
  • Cutouts for you to add speakers for your Bluetooth kit
  • A Pinlock-ready visor with a Pinlock lens included
  • An integrated sun visor
  • A red button on the chin bar to lift it up

All of which makes it a nice helmet that’s both comfortable and feels well-made. 

HJC i90 from the rear
Clean lines around this helmet. Image Source: HJC

The Bluetooth

This HJC i90 modular Bluetooth helmet doesn’t actually come with Bluetooth installed. Instead, you need to invest in a separate kit, either the SmartHJC 10B or 20B models. 

Here’s a breakdown of the differences:

FeatureHJC Smart 10BHJC Smart 20B
Bluetooth3.04.1
Battery life8 hours talk time10 hours talk time
Range400 meters / a quarter-mile1,600 meters / 1 mile
Intercom paired devices28
Other featuresUniversal intercom works with other brandsConnect two devices (phone, GPS, etc) at once, universal intercom
PurchaseGet the Best PriceGet the Best Price
The HJC 20B headset internals
This kit from Sena is built to tuck seamlessly inside the HJC i90 helmet. Image Source: HJC

Our Assessment

We concur with one recent review of the HJC i90 when they said, “A very high quality helmet, at a very reasonable price. The features and functionality far exceed the price point” (3). It’s maybe a little heavy at 1,720g, but it’s got a low price point and it’s modular so we’d expect a little extra weight. 

If Bluetooth came as standard, it’d be competing for the top spot on our list of the best modular Bluetooth helmets. 

Sena Outrush R – Best Budget Bluetooth Modular Helmet

For the price you pay for the Sena Outrush R, you get a decent bang for your buck – a helmet that will protect your head with a basic Bluetooth communication system built-in. 

The Sena Outrush R comes in two simple colorways – white or black. Image Source: Sena

The Outside

Made from polycarbonate plastic, the Sena Outrush weighs in at 1,730g or 3.81 lbs. You get vents on the chin and the head, plus a rear exhaust. The interior holes for the vents are pretty small so the ventilation isn’t amazing. 

The modular section is raised from a button under the chin with a smooth mechanism to raise it. A chin curtain is also thrown in to cut down on wind noise.

Sizes are basic, running from S-XL and the chin strap is a ratchet rather than a double-D. It’s not the absolute safest chin strap in the world, but is very popular among riders. Speaking of safety, this lid also sports a rare ECE certification on top of the standard DOT.

The Inside

You get the standard multi-density EPS foam and a removable and washable liner. There’s an integrated sun visor; it’s got a ridge at the bottom though which can distort your view a little. The padding is comfortable and thick enough to not cause rubbing or pressure points, according to reviewers. The visor is multi-stage, allowing you to crack it a bit for some airflow, and there’s a notch at the front that keeps it snapped in place. 

With the chinbar down, the Outrush R is a sleek lid. Image Source: Sena

The Bluetooth

While this modular Bluetooth motorcycle helmet is reasonably priced, it packs a capable Bluetooth system. With this helmet you get:

  • Bluetooth 5.0 sporting an 900-meter / 0.6 mile range
  • 4-way intercom and 2-way HD intercom
  • 12 hours talk time with 2.5 hours charging time
  • Advanced noise control and voice prompts for clear communications and controls

This headset also allows you to take calls and listen to your music and GPS directions, and reviewers note the volume and communications with chinbar down are great: “No wind inside to disturb my calls or music. I’m not a fast rider but got up to 86mph and was still jamming quite nicely” (4).

Our Assessment

Your budget shouldn’t be a barrier to trying out a modular Bluetooth motorcycle helmet. The Sena Outrush R is a solid choice for basic music listening and communications in a modular helmet.

Torc T28B – Best Modular Bluetooth Motorcycle Helmet for City Riding

The Torc T28B does have some limitations but it has enough cool features to make it on to our list – as long as you’re not using it for long distances and group cruises. 

The Torc T28B in vapor red
The Torc T28B in Vapor Red. Source: Torc Helmets

The Outside

This lid is made from thermal polymer alloy, which is the same tech as the Bilt Techno 3.0. You can buy it in sizes XS-2XL and the only details we can find about the weight put it at 5.15 lbs or 2,300g. It’s not officially listed on the Torc site so we can’t be sure, but it’s a hefty weight if so. 

As with the other helmets we’ve looked at, you get chin and top-of-the-head vents and rear exhausts. 

The Inside

Along with the multi-density EPS foam and removable and washable, antimicrobial liner, you get the integrated sun visor thrown in. 

inside Torc t28B
Inside the Torc T28B. Image Source: Torc Helmets

The modular section lifts up with a release button in front of the chin curtain. 

You can easily switch out your visor for one of five special tints that you can buy from the manufacturer, too.

The Bluetooth

Unlike every other helmet we’ve looked at, the Torc T28B uses Blinc Bluetooth rather than a Sena kit. It’s one of the reasons we’ve marked it down – your riding group is much less likely to be able to pair with you. 

Left side of helmet
The Torc T28B’s Blinc Bluetooth unit and sun visor slide. Image Source: Torc Hdelmets

There’s no record – even in the user manual – of which Bluetooth spec it uses, but it can pair two phones so we’re assuming it’s at least 4.1. No one seems to have tested the range on it, either. The specs we do know are:

  • Pairs with iOS and Android phones
  • 12 hours talk time
  • Intercom works with other Blinc devices

It’s not great at high speeds, with one review noting, “Other than when the bike is at an idle, you can’t communicate with each other. Everything is garbled” (5). 

Our Assessment

If you’re looking to have a modular Bluetooth helmet to commute around the city, this works well. It’s kinda heavy so not great for long rides, and if you go out in groups you might be the odd one out not using Sena. 

It’s DOT and ECE certified so it’s safe and you’ll be able to listen to music all you want. 

Bell SRT Modular – Best Bluetooth-Ready Modular Street Helmet

Bell Bluetooth modular helmets that are fully integrated don’t exist, but the Bell SRT Modular is ready to be upgraded. 

Bell SRT modular from the side
The Bell SRT is a striking lid. Image Source: Bell

The Outside

This helmet is both DOT and ECE certified – you might see in some places that it’s Snell-certified as well – but as we said up top, there aren’t any modulars with a Snell rating, yet. Here’s the rest of the details you need: 

  • It’s made from fiberglass, so a cut above the other helmets we’ve looked at
  • It weighs in at 1,750g for the medium helmet
  • There are three shell sizes covering XS-2XL
  • There are three vents on the chin, two on the forehead, and one at the top
  • The chinstrap is secured with the safest option – a double-D ring

The Inside

Internally, on the Bell SRT Modular, you get:

  • EPS foam with cutouts for Bluetooth speakers
  • An antimicrobial, removable liner
  • Separate removable cheek pads
  • A built-in sun visor
  • A normal visor that’s Pinlock-ready but only sits in two positions
  • An easy release modular section with a button at the chin bar
Bell SRT with chin bar up.
The chin bar on this helmet settles at a nice right angle. Image Source: Bell

The Bluetooth

You can choose any Bluetooth set to work with the Bell SRT. Sena does make a set for Bell but it’s customized for different models. That’s not to say it won’t work with the SRT, but it’s going to work as well as any other Bluetooth headset you choose to buy. 

Our Assessment

The biggest drawback of the Bell SRT modular helmet is the Bluetooth. Because there’s not a specially designed set to use it comes behind the HJC i90 that we looked at. 

It’s still a very solid helmet that looks and feels great, though. 

Derrick Saunders
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