In this video, I'm reviewing the Shoei Neotec 2 vs the Schuberth C3 Pro, both being high-end modular motorcycle helmets. I have tested both these helmets extensively, riding thousands of miles cross-country with each in an array of different conditions. I actually ride with the Shoei Neotec 2 each day on my police motorcycle, as it is my issued helmet. I personally bought both the Shoei Neotec and Schuberth c3 Pro for my personal use so rest assured this is an independent review. I'll reveal the pros and cons of each helmet. (see video below)
Both these modular helmets have a top adjustable vent for airflow. The Shoei Neotec 2 has a rear vent that stays open. It causes a vacuum effect and pulls the air over the top of the head and it vents out the rear. Air on the Schuberth C3 Pro also enters through the top vent, goes over the top of the head, and down the back of the head and vents at the bottom rear of the helmet with an exhaust port built into the bottom of the neck roll. Both these helmets have nice airflow.
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Both helmets have removable cheek pads and inner comfort liners, so you can wash them. They both have cutouts on the inside to accommodate speakers for wireless Bluetooth headsets. Both have eyeglass stem channels inside.
The Shoei Noetec 2 is DOT rated while the Schuberth C3 Pro modular helmet is DOT and ECE rated. Neither are SNELL rated, as they do not rate modular helmets.
Both the Shoei Noetec 2 and Schuberth c3 Pro have a robust stainless steel latching system for securing the modular portion of the helmet. Both have an easy to operate one-hand system for releasing and rocking the modular portion of the helmet up. The helmets both seal up nicely with the latching system and the rubber seals that work in conjunction with the face shields.
They Schuberth c3 Pro is the quietest and lightest helmet in the world. The C3 was already the quietest but they made the C3 Pro even quieter. The Schuberth C3 Pro comes in at under 4 lbs while the Sheoi Neotec 2 comes in at over 4 lbs.
Both modular helmets have a clear face shield with detents in the hinge system for adjustment where you like it and both come with an anti-fog pin-lock system. Both have a drop-down tinted visor within. They each have a slider on the outside of the helmet for the tinted drop-down sun visor but in different locations. The tinted sun visors are anti-fog and anti-glare.
Face Shield & Hinge System Pros/Cons:
The face shield hinge system on the Schuberth C3 Pro is absolutely the best and smoothest operating system I've ever used on a modular helmet. It is so smooth and refined compared to the clunky face shield hinge system on the Shoei Neotec 2. Plus, the Shoei Neotec only has one plastic tab on the left side at the bottom for pushing the face shield up. When my clutch hand is busy, reaching across to the tab on the left side with my right hand to push up to open the shield causes it to flex a bit and it opens even rougher and clunky like. Much force has to be used to open the face shield. It's one of my biggest complaints of the Shoei Neotec 2. They need to add a plastic push/pull tab on both sides of the bottom of the face shield as Schuberth does.
Schuberth Fitment & Chin Strap Issue Fixed:
The original Schuberth C3 received many complaints about its fitment on some shape/size heads and pressure points at the forehead area after riding a long distance. Schuberth listened and it seems they have resolved this issue with the new C3 Pro version. They made more room in the forehead area and you can even purchase thinner cheek pads if necessary. I too experienced some of these forehead pressure points after riding all day on the original Schuberth C3.
Many also complained about the C3's chin strap being too far back and pushing into the adam's apple of some riders. This too has been fixed in the C3 Pro and they moved the chin strap forward. Schuberth really listens to riders and fixes issues it seems.
Integrated Wireless Bluetooth Communication System Issues:
An issue arises with both these modular helmets when it comes to adding aftermarket Bluetooth wireless headsets. On the Shoei Noetec 2 they added, for an additional charge, an integrated wireless headset. It's made by Sena and it's called the SRL and it's really the same as a clamp-on Sena 20's headset in its functionality. They changed both sides of the helmet to incorporate this integrated system and you now can't easily clamp on a simple Sena 20s or 30k mesh headset. You'd have to move it to near the rear of the helmet and it may not be the best ergonomically.
The problem this causes is with the Harley Boom Box Infotainment System functionality. In order to get full stereo sound and the appropriate menu options in the Harley Boom Box, you need a Harley branded Sena 20s or 30k mesh wireless headset. If you pair the integrated Shoei Neotec 2 SRL system, you won't get either of those things. And we now know you can't clamp the needed Harley stamped headset to the Neotec 2, which was not a problem with the original Neotec that I'm currently wearing. Understand, you could just pair the integrated SRL headset directly with your smartphone, but you'd be skipping the Harley Boom Box integration and benefits.
The Schuberth c3 Pro modular helmet shares some of the same issues. Cardo designed an integrated headset system, for an extra charge, that replaces the neck roll in both the C3 and C3 Pro. This system is called the SRC and you won't get stereo sound or the proper menu options on the Harley Boom Box if you pair it. Additionally, if you pull the neck roll partially out of its track to try and accommodate a Sena 20s or 30k mesh, you'll break the tight seal and you'll likely introduce wind noise and the neck roll may also just fall out on one side. It's not an ideal setup.
For those that don't have a Harley Boom Box Infotainment system or don't use it, this won't be an issue and you can just use the integrated modular headset systems and pair directly with your smartphone.
I really can't tell whether the Shoei Neotec 2 or the Schuberth C3 Pro is better. Each has its strong points and each has weak points. It is going to be dependant upon your exact needs.
I'd say that you'd be happy if you purchased either of these modular helmets. They are both going to hold up well and last you for many years and many miles of riding.
jerry harbowy says
Ryan, have you looked at the Shark Evoline Series 3 helmet? It gives this Road Glide Special rider the best of both worlds: 3/4 helmet for most of my 2 lane riding and and a full face for wet, cold or highway riding.
Ryan Urlacher says
Very cool. Looks like a great option.
Dan Scott says
Ryan. Love reading your articles and Thank You for all your information. But, I too wear the Shoie Neotec 2 helmet with the Sena 20S Harley Davidson headset. I differ with you that if I read your story correctly they wouldn’t mount to the side! I had my 20S mounted to the side of my Shoie and now I just upgraded to the Sena 20S Harley Davidson headset which is also mounted on the side.
Ryan Urlacher says
Yah, maybe something weird there. I’ll look. I show in the video and have the Sena mounted to the Shoei.