Driving Gear Evaluation: Forcite MK1S Sensible Bike Helmet


A short time in the past we caught up with the founders of the Australian bike helmet producer, Forcite. In our unique interview, we mentioned the event of their enterprise, their good helmet know-how, and the processes concerned in creating such a novel product. Forcite not too long ago launched the most recent iteration of their good bike helmet, the MK1S, and I managed to get my fingers on one to provide it a check run.

For the reason that launch of the Forcite MK1S, it’s been receiving quite a lot of constructive suggestions from the primary spherical of consumers of their neighborhood discussion board. Forcite has additionally simply been awarded ‘Greatest in school’ on the 2022 Australian Good Design Awards for product design within the Automotive and Transport sector. So, as you possibly can think about, my expectations for this helmet had been excessive.

Forcite MK1s smart helmet review

Forcite MK1S Specs and pricing

The MK1S  contains a T400 carbon fiber composite outer shell. T400 carbon fibre was designed particularly for aerospace purposes so together with being light-weight it’s extremely robust. Contained in the helmet is an EPS foam liner much like these you’ll discover in most helmets. In whole the shell, liners, and built-in know-how equate to round 1500g (giant measurement) which positions it between the likes of Shoei’s RF-1400 and the tremendous gentle AGV K6. Not unhealthy for a helmet that packs a lot tech into its design.

Sensible know-how is what makes the MK1S actually particular. Built-in into the helmet is a 1080p 30-60fps HD digital camera, a 40mm Harman Kardon speaker system, a chargeable battery that provides 3-4 hours of steady use whereas recording video (7+ utilizing the app or listening to music), twin omnidirectional microphones and Forcite’s distinctive peripheral LED alert show system. That’s quite a lot of further gear to suit right into a helmet however by some means Forcite has managed to do it seamlessly. So seamlessly in truth that the presence of all this gadgetry is just about undetectable to the wearer when it’s not energetic.

Different options of the Forcite MK1S good helmet (sure there’s extra!) embody an built-in tinted UV-blocking solar visor, 8 air flow ports, interchangeable visors with pin lock functionality, the selection of both commonplace or premium padding (additional $79 AUD) and a two-piece detachable chin wind curtain.

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The Forcite MK1S is on the market in both a matte or gloss clearcoat end. This exposes the carbon fibre weave beneath permitting you to scrutinise the standard of its manufacturing. Judging by the weave on my check helmet Forcite’s QC management is top-notch. There have been no noticeable defects within the gloss clearcoat or something that may detract from its premium end.

The MK1S is available in sizes starting from XS to XL and is designed to finest go well with an intermediate oval head form. Pricing for the Forcite MK1S begins at $1,200 AUD. Forcite provides add-ons on the level of buy comparable to reminiscence playing cards and totally different visors. These will, in fact, bump the value up a bit, however Forcite has stored the price of this stuff low and aggressive so it is sensible to seize them unexpectedly.

Forcite MK1s smart helmet review

Forcite MK1S what’s within the field and setup

The MK1S is available in all-black packaging with silver foil branding which makes an excellent first impression. Contained in the field, you’ll discover a shelf containing all of the included equipment and the helmet stashed safely beneath. The equipment you’ll discover embody a helmet bag, an working information, Bluetooth controller and mounting bracket, a upkeep device, a Forcite certificates of authenticity with the manufacturing variety of your helmet, and a USBC charger for the helmet and the distant.

Forcite MK1s smart helmet review

As with every rechargeable system, earlier than you employ the helmet and distant they have to be plugged in and absolutely charged. As soon as it’s performed you possibly can mount the Forcite distant to your handlebars utilizing the provided bracket. The bracket matches onto 7/eighth and 1-inch bars utilizing the provided rubber mounting rings and the controller is hooked up utilizing a screw-on fastener.

The distant fastener is the draw back to this setup as a result of it must be performed behind the unit which could be fiddly, particularly if the area in your handlebars is restricted otherwise you’re sporting gloves. A clip much like a number of the smartphone bike mounts we’ve featured previously could be far more handy, however that is definitely no deal breaker.

To function the MK1S helmet you will want to obtain the Forcite app (IOS or Android). As soon as put in there’s a setup course of that the app walks you thru. This course of entails registering your helmet and controller so that they’ll auto-connect after they’re switched on.

A easy press of the ability button on the within of the chin bar turns the helmet on. A inexperienced LED lights as much as point out the helmet is energetic and also you’ll hear a brief beep by means of the built-in audio system. One essential factor to recollect is that in an effort to use all of the helmet’s capabilities you will want the app operating in your telephone. With out it, there are some things that will not perform as anticipated comparable to answering telephone calls. It’s because the app works as a communication bridge between the helmet and the handlebar distant.

Forcite Helmet Phone App

The Forcite smartphone app and distant

If you launch the Forcite app it defaults to a map display. From there you possibly can enter your vacation spot, leap in your bike, and the helmet’s good options will information your means. The Forcite app means that you can simply add waypoints to your journey, in case there’s a specific means you need to go, and you’ll share the route with different riders. The wonderful thing about this navigation system is that it’ll additionally notify you of probably harmful hazards in addition to the usual directional directions. The app collects information about particles on the highway, roadworks, pace digital camera areas, and so forth, and can notify you utilizing totally different audio and visible alerts contained in the helmet.

On the backside of the app are 2 icons representing your helmet and the distant. These have inexperienced rings round them when every part is linked and double as battery life indicators. Between these 2 icons, you’ll discover a document button so you can begin the helmet’s digital camera recording along with your telephone if you’d like.

To enter the choices/setting display you faucet an icon that includes 3 horizontal strains beside the map search bar. When that’s clicked you possibly can regulate the audio and visible alerts coming by means of the helmet. On this menu, you can even edit your profile, use the media cable to entry video content material out of your helmet and regulate different issues such because the show, navigation settings, the helmet and controller settings, and entry the assistance menu.

Forcite controller instructions

The Forcite MK1S distant is designed to will let you management the helmet with out having to the touch your telephone. It mounts on to the handlebars so you possibly can place it near your left hand for fast button presses. The controller is triangular and has a button in every nook and the centre. These are used to carry out primary capabilities regarding navigation, telephone calls, digital camera recording, and controlling your music. There are a number of instructions you’ll must do not forget that contain both fast presses or holding the buttons. It’s going to take you some time to familiarise your self with their location and the totally different push combos, nevertheless it’s all fairly simple. On the aspect of the controller, you’ll additionally discover easy-to-access quantity buttons.

Forcite MK1s smart helmet review

Driving in and working the Forcite MK1S

If you pull the Forcite in your head every part feels fairly acquainted. It matches cosy and the liner is comfortable in opposition to the pores and skin. As you’d anticipate it’s a reasonably tight match at first as a result of the liners are designed to chill out over time to kind an ideal match. All of the vents are opened utilizing slide switches and the inner tinted visor is operated by way of a sliding swap on the left of the helmet behind the principle visor hinge. The D-ring strap fastener is identical as any you’ve used earlier than and the visor opens utilizing a thumb tab.

The match: The MK1S is a cushty helmet. My check helmet has the non-obligatory premium padding improve (+$79AUD) which options contour-forming foam, a snug-fitting neck roll to assist forestall wind noise and ingress, a big chin curtain, and plush supplies. I’ve observed a little bit of strain on my brow within the MK1S. It hasn’t left me with any awkward dents on my head and I’m anticipating it to reduce over time because the padding breaks in. The massive chin curtain and neck roll are a welcome addition, notably on cooler days and nights.

Wind noise and turbulence: This helmet is under no circumstances the quietest I’ve examined; particularly when speeds exceed 80km/h. The noise might be on par with my previous Bell Star Carbon, however nowhere close to as quiet as my AGV K6. Ear plugs are in fact advisable, however there’s one more reason for that I’ll cowl under.

Air flow: The air flow supplied by the 8 vents within the MK1S is excellent. The breeze coming by means of the chin ports was notably noticeable. The one destructive concerning the air flow system is how the ports within the chin bar perform. Relatively than exterior switches like the opposite vents, they’re operated utilizing sliders contained in the chin bar. Because of this if you happen to neglect to shut them earlier than you set off you’ll have to drag over to do it. First-world drawback.

Forcite MK1s smart helmet review

Visor and aerodynamics: The sphere of view out of the MK1S visor isn’t the widest available on the market nevertheless it’s not limiting. The mechanism that operates the visor feels somewhat clunky nevertheless it performs because it ought to. The visor has a number of open positions so you possibly can experience with it partially open if desired.

The interior visor is nice if you happen to don’t like using 24/7 with a tinted visor. It operates simply utilizing an exterior slider and I’d describe it as a darkish tint with a slight yellow tinge. For those who’re using into direct daylight it’s a godsend. The one difficulty I’ve with the inner visor is that it hits the top of my nostril when it drops down. That is most likely solely a difficulty for individuals like me with massive pointy noses.

As for aerodynamics, most of my using takes place on high-speed roads and I haven’t observed any ungainly wind buffeting or turbulence so far.

Battery life: Primarily based on Forcite’s numbers you will get some actually good use out of a single MK1S cost. Charging the helmet is completed rapidly by way of a USB-C put up beneath the chin bar. With the digital camera on they estimate 2-3 hours of operation which is greater than sufficient to seize the very best elements of a day’s experience.

One factor to notice is that because of the helmet’s standby perform the battery will drain. It’ll take a few weeks or so, nevertheless it’s one thing price remembering so that you don’t get caught out with a flat battery simply as you’re about to set off.

See additionally

Recording video: You might have 3 methods of recording video with the MK1S helmet. You can begin recording both utilizing the app, the distant in your handlebars or you possibly can set it as much as begin recording as quickly because the helmet is turned on. The latter is a good choice for individuals who just like the peace of thoughts a dashcam offers.

The lens of the digital camera is situated within the middle of the chin bar. It’s positioned in order that in an ordinary using place it captures a very good view of what’s straight forward in addition to the highest of your handlebars. As for high quality, it competes nicely with different equally spec’d cameras and does a reasonably respectable job coping with low gentle circumstances. One factor it may benefit from is improved picture stabilisation, however the bumps it captures could be smoothed out with respectable modifying software program. As for the sound recording, the two inside mics captured what I used to be saying good and clear and there was sufficient engine noise within the background to let you realize I used to be on a bike.

Forcite MK1s smart helmet review

Audio and visible expertise: The sound that the helmet delivers to you thru the Harman Kardon speaker system is nice, however earplugs are important. It’s because the treble appears to be turned up excessive. I’d assume that is deliberate that can assist you hear what’s being performed over the wind noise. Audiophiles won’t like what this does to Phil Collins’ ‘Within the Air Tonight’, however let’s face it, you’re by no means going to get probably the most out of your music when it’s coming by means of audio system stashed inside a bike helmet.

Cellphone calls additionally work nicely whilst you’re on the transfer. At suburban speeds, it’s unlikely anybody will even know you’re using a bike. I referred to as my spouse once I was doing 110km/h on the freeway and he or she was very stunned by the readability saying it merely appeared like I used to be on a hands-free name.

Because of the standard audio system, navigation instructions are additionally very straightforward to listen to. You’ll be able to select between 3 totally different voices for the prompts and so they ship directions clearly and concisely. The most effective a part of the navigation system nonetheless is the distinctive peripheral lighting bar.

Sitting on the high fringe of the chin bar beneath the breath guard is a white strip that’s about 5 mm thick and 15cm lengthy. Inside it’s an LED gentle array that shows navigation alerts utilizing totally different lighting patterns and hues (The video under reveals how this appears to be like in motion). I’ve ridden within the helmet in full daylight and at evening and the lights are very straightforward to see. At evening they’re in fact far more intrusive however by no means a lot that they’re overly distracting. It’s a superbly easy mechanism and the considering behind it’s nothing wanting genius.

Last ideas on the Forcite MK1S helmet

When contemplating a helmet buy a price ticket of $1299 AUD could be arduous to swallow. However it’s essential to consider precisely what you’re getting with the Forcite MK1S.

The MK1S helmet itself isn’t fairly as much as par with the likes of a equally priced Shoei. I feel it’s fairly related in high quality and luxury although to the Bell Star DLX MIPS I not too long ago examined which retails for $890 AUD. To see the actual worth right here you’ve obtained to consider all that tech. Sena’s newest 50C Harman Kardon, 1080p digital camera geared up intercom system retails for $899 AUD. Slap that on the Bell Star and also you’ve spent near $1800. Then there’s the truth that the Sena is a bolt-on answer versus the seamlessly built-in tech of the MK1S. Personally, a $500 saving and one thing I don’t need to spend an hour putting in is much more interesting to me.

The Forcite MK1S is a big leap ahead in helmet know-how. I’d regard it as important because the introduction of parking sensors to automobiles. There will likely be loads of riders who don’t need the distractions this know-how introduces to their experience, however there are numerous others who’re positive to profit from it. Seamlessly integrating all this performance right into a helmet that’s light-weight and each ECE and DOT licensed is spectacular to say the least. I had excessive hopes for this helmet and Forcite delivered. I sincerely hope we’ll be seeing extra improvements from this sensible Australian helmet producer sooner or later.

[ Save 5% off your purchase using the code ROTCR5 ]


  • Seamless inbuilt know-how
  • Peripheral LED alerts are ingenious
  • Good worth for cash contemplating all of the tech
  • Nice buyer help and rider neighborhood
  • Supreme all-in-one vlogging helmet


  • Battery drain can catch you out
  • Wind noise excessive for the value level
  • Visor mechanism feels somewhat clunky
  • Preliminary setup could be fiddly

Forcite MK1s smart helmet review



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