JUMP TO:

LifeBEAM Smart Helmet with Integrated ANT+ Heart Rate Sensor In-Depth Review

DSC_1692

It’s been almost a year since the LifeBeam SMART helmet hit the interwebs via a Kickstarter crowd-funded effort.  Since then they’ve iterated through prototypes, status updates, and then ultimately a few months back – delivery of the actual product.  It would be the first ANT+ enabled heart rate (HR) sensing cycling helmet (perhaps the first HR helmet at all for that matter).  They’d also be simultaneously introducing a Bluetooth Smart version as well.  Both options were set to allow you to broadcast your HR straight to compatible devices (such as a GPS bike computer or phone), without the need for a HR strap.

I got the unit I paid for earlier this winter and have been using it on all my rides since.  Yes, even some of my indoor rides.  I’ve got tons of data, from cold days to hot days (such as recently in Florida).  And from dry days to very wet days.  Lots of sweat indoors and no sweat outdoors.  In the course of that I’ve been charting the data against one or more additional HR monitoring devices on all these rides, allowing me to see how well the unit actually performs.  Obviously, accuracy is the most important thing here if you’re going to pay extra for such a device.

So with that, let’s dive into the whole kit and ultimately whether or not I think it’s worthy of a ride.

Unboxing:

IMG_9863

If you were shopping in a local bike shop, you’d likely not even notice the fact that this helmet was terribly different than any other.  From the outside, the box looks basically like any other helmet box – minus the addition of the little pulse-looking graphic on the front.

Most importantly though on the front is the tiny little ANT+ symbol, which indicates its an ANT+ device.  Should you have bought the Bluetooth Smart variant, you’ll find that logo instead.

IMG_9865

Unpacking the box you’ve got the below collection of goods.  First is the Lazer Sport GENESIS helmet, which the electronics were fit into/onto.

Then there’s some paper manual stuffs, a USB charging cable, tiny adjustment pads, and a handy little carrying bag.

IMG_9875

Here, the micro-USB cable.  It’s the same as almost every phone cable on the planet these days except iPhone’s:

IMG_9878

And the manual, indicating the different LED lights.  Ultimately, all you’ll really need to know is that blue light on = helmet on, blue light off = helmet off.

IMG_9897

As noted, the helmet includes a carrying bag – which is a nice gesture.  I’ve found it’s pretty durable for travel though without the bag, as I’ve attached it directly to the outside of my backpack on a recent trip to the US, which includes all assortment of planes, trains and automobiles – with the thing bonking around off various objects while strapped to the back.

IMG_9877

Inside the helmet you’ll have a few labels.  The ones below on the left side are less important:

IMG_9884

However, the ones  on the right side are fairly important, as it includes the CPSC safety label.  Without said label most races won’t let you participate.  This is especially true of triathlons that might check such helmets (officials only check aero helmets, but sometimes if they see something out of the ordinary, they’ll check it too).

IMG_9885

At the very front is the tiny heart rate sensor.  But I won’t get too far ahead of ourselves yet.  We’ll get into that in a second.

IMG_9881

Lastly, when it comes to the weight of the helmet, I measured it at 409g.  For comparison, my other helmet (without any ‘smartness’ to it), came in at 220g.  The Girl’s helmet (which is a smaller size), came in at 272g.

DSC_1702

DSC_1700

DSC_1699

Despite being a fair bit heavier, I really didn’t notice the weight.  Ultimately, we’re not talking a ton of weight in the grand scheme of things (though I definitely realize some cyclists are very focused on helmet weight).

With all the contents surveyed, we’ll go and get into the basic day to day use of the unit.

Basic Operation:

IMG_9899

Because the the helmet does have electronics within it, it does need some sort of battery.  In this case, it’s powered by a USB re-chargeable battery that has a small USB port on the back of the helmet protected by a rubber door.  As noted above, the cable is a standard micro-USB cable and can be plugged into either a computer or any USB outlet you’ll find.

The battery is designed to last 13-15 hours between charges.  And though I didn’t have any 15 hours rides to validate that, I never had an issue with the unit not having power (and I recharged only about once every 1-2 weeks).

Inside the helmet you’ll see a few tiny wires running from the battery compartment in the back to the sensor in the front.  These provide power and the HR data to the communications transmitter in the rear of the helmet.

IMG_9888

While I didn’t attempt to remove the entire wired setup (it was firmly affixed), I do know of at least one reader that was able to successfully remove it and ‘re-install’ everything into a different helmet (with a bit of modification).  Obviously, not something you’d do over a coffee-break – but within the realm of possible for the more DIY geeks.

For me, I just stuck with the helmet as-is.  In doing so, I used the little scrolling nob on the top to tighten it down to my head.  You can use this to tighten/loosen the helmet inside.  Also, the chin-strap is exceedingly long, so you can trim that as well (like most helmets).

DSC_1658

When it comes to the operation, everything is controlled by the rear pod.  This is where the USB port is as well as the power button.  To turn it on you simply hold down the button below the blue light bar for a few seconds, and it’ll chirp that it’s on.  To turn it off, you do the same.  The unit will automatically go into a power saving mode if not used for 10 minutes.

The blue bar on the back slowly glows on and off, indicating the helmet is currently powered on.

DSC_1664

I found it took about 5-10 seconds for it to find my heart rate upon putting it on – typical for most optical sensors.  Once it found my heart rate, I was good to go.

When it comes to the optical heart rate sensor, it’s situated on the front of the helmet, just at your forehead.  This measures blood-flow and is able to produce a pulse reading.  The company actually started off doing helmets for fighter jet pilots and astronauts with the same technology.  Despite what The Girl sometimes thinks (or wants) though, I’m not going to the moon anytime soon.  But, the technology thus far appears to work equally as well here on earth (as I detail in the next section).

DSC_1660

Unlike most other optical sensors however, you won’t actually see any green (or yellow, or red) light emitted visually from it.  It just looks like above, all the time.  The underlying sensor will ultimately be seen in other products as the company has recently signed deals with a number of other entities for placement of the sensors in 3rd party products.

Connected devices (ANT+ or Bluetooth Smart editions):

DSC_1678

The singular reason you’d buy the Smart helmet over other helmets is because of the heart rate sensor connectivity.  It should go without saying that if you don’t plan to use such connectivity, you should close this browser tab now and go onto something more productive…like watching YouTube.

The helmet comes in two flavors: ANT+ or Bluetooth Smart.  The two dominant low-power wireless transmission protocols used in sport devices today.

ANT+ is used in all Garmin devices, as well as Timex, Magellan, Suunto and a slew of others.  Bluetooth Smart meanwhile has predominantly been used connecting to mobile phones – but as of late some newer devices are indeed supporting it (like the Polar V800 and V650, and TomTom watches).  On the ANT+ side, it’ll work with any ANT+ device that’s capable of utilizing heart rate.  And on the Bluetooth Smart side it’ll work with any app that’s capable of Bluetooth Smart HR profile reception (i.e. Strava, MapMyFitness, etc…).

LifeBEAM (the company) plans to offer a dual-protocol version in about two months, which would be inline functionality-wise with what most heart rate sensor related companies are doing these days.  This would transmit on both ANT+ and Bluetooth Smart concurrently, so you don’t have to buy one version or the other.

Since I bought the ANT+ edition, let’s focus on that.  I suspect that as it stands today the majority of cyclists would likely buy the ANT+ version since said majority of cyclists interested in this product would probably have a Garmin GPS bike computer (or other ANT+ enabled cycling unit).

DSC_1679

To pair with my Garmin Edge unit, I simply went into the heart rate strap pairing menu and told it to search for the sensor.  A few seconds later it found the helmet and then I was able to validate the ANT+ ID displayed as well:

DSC_1682

From there on out it’ll automatically be paired for future rides, and above, you can see my heart rate.  Of course, you can display your heart rate in BPM or via zones, depending on what your specific cycling unit supports.

Optical HR Accuracy Geekfest:

DSC_1657

Of course, no amount of pretty blue lights mean anything if the unit actually doesn’t measure heart rate accurately.  Thus, I’ve done my usual job of recording rides with multiple heart rate devices to validate accuracy.  These devices include both traditional HR straps (ECG) as well as as other optical sensors by other companies.  While I have months of data, I’ll just boil it down to a few random snippets to demonstrate what I’ve seen.

Ride A:

This was actually a ride from just last week in 80°F Florida (with lots of sun, which can sometimes be an issue for optical sensors).  As you can see the numbers aligned spot-on against not only one strap, but against two other optical units.  I saw a brief excursion of the Scosche unit (that blue spike), which is interestingly the only spike I’ve ever seen with that product in running or riding.

image

Ride B:

This was a mixed city ride and park ride, thus with lots of stops and starts – with the middle section being loops around a park without any cars/traffic/stops.  As you can see, things track very closely.  There appears to be one point in the first few minutes where it diverges briefly when I increase effort quickly, and then the same about 1/3rd of the way through for a few seconds in delay.  But otherwise everything tracks my increases/decreases in intensity quite well.

image

Ride C:

In this ride I actually drove to a park where I do loops on closed roads and then proceeded to ride the loops.  Thus why the effort is quite smooth.  I see that the HR strap and the helmet tracked quite well, with the Mio Link having a bit of difficulty in the first 90 seconds and then locking in and matching for the remainder of the ride.

image

Ride D:

In the below ride, which happens to be a trainer ride, I did a few short high-intensity intervals in the middle of it, causing my heart rate to quickly rise and fall.  Interestingly, I saw a bit of a delay in this activity – which I hadn’t seen at other times.  Note that the heart rate data is captured by all devices at once, so it’s not a case of two sets of data being offset.

This really amounts to just a couple of seconds of delay – and is something I hadn’t seen with any of the other test runs I did, so I think it’s just a one-off oddity.

image

I do want to point out that The Girl did wear the helmet for one indoor ride testing data.  But ultimately the helmet was too loose on her (since it didn’t go small enough), and as a result I saw significant variations in data in that case.  Given that any HR monitoring device requires a proper fit – this makes sense.

In summary, I’m just not seeing any issues with the accuracy of the sensor used here, for me.  Nor am I seeing any issues with weak signals or the like from the ANT+ transmitter (occasionally a problem on some sensor devices).  Overall, things look very solid.

Comparison Charts:

Starting with this review I’ve introduced a new category into the product comparison chart – the heart rate sensor category.  This category includes a combination of leading edge heart rate devices that have some form of ‘unique’ aspect to them.  For example, this helmet, or other optical sensors.  Or HR straps that transmit underwater, or capture running metrics.

To that end, the below chart is only a handful of products I’ve added to that database.  Thus, if you want to mix and match other products you can use the full product comparison tool here to do so (it allows you to add more products than seen below).

Function/FeatureLifeBEAM Smart HelmetWahoo TICKRMio Link4iiii's Viiiiva
Copyright DC Rainmaker - Updated October 5th, 2014 @ 7:18 amNew Window
Price$249$59$99$79
Product Announce DateMar 2013Jan 6th, 2014Jan 6th, 2014Jan 7th, 2013
Product Availability DateJan 2014Apr 2014Apr 11th, 2014July 2013
Measurement TypeOpticalECGOpticalECG
Typical PlacementHead (Helmet)Chest StrapWrist StrapChest Strap
Battery Life13-15 hours1-2 years8-10 hrs200 hours
Battery TypeUSB rechargeableCoin Cell CR2032USB rechargeableCoin Cell CR2032
HR TransmissionLifeBEAM Smart HelmetWahoo TICKRMio Link4iiii's Viiiiva
ANT+Yes (specific Model)YesYesYes
Bluetooth SmartYes (specific Model)YesYesYes
Dual concurrent ANT+/BLENoYesYesYes
Analog for gym equipmentNoNoNoNo
Usable HR data underwaterNoNoDepends: If on same wrist, YMMV.No
Bridging ANT+ to Bluetooth SmartNoNoNoYes
Can record activity w/o 2nd deviceNoNoNoNo
Additional DataLifeBEAM Smart HelmetWahoo TICKRMio Link4iiii's Viiiiva
Run PaceNoNoNoNo
Run CadenceNoNoNoNo
Run Economy/MetricsNoNoNoNo
Cycling Power Meter EstimationNoNoCan pass through ANT+ PM's
Valid HRV/RR dataNoSoonNoYes
Requires Bluetooth Smart Phone for ConfigurationNoNoYes (for HR zones)Yes (for bridging only)
Firmware UpdateableNoYes (iOS/Android)Yes (Platform TBA)Yes
Amazon LinkN/ALinkLinkLink
Clever Training Link (Save 10% with DCR10JKW)N/AN/ALinkLink
More InfoLinkLinkLinkLink

Again, remember you can mix and match and create your own comparison against additional HR products not shown above.  Think of it like going to the ice cream parlor and making your own sundae.

Summary:

DSC_1653

At the end of the day, the helmet does what it says it does, and does it well.  It allows you to ride heart-rate strap free while still getting heart rate data.  The accuracy of the sensor technology appears solid based on my testing (and, at least, based on my body).  And the build of the helmet in total feels solid and seems to withstand crappy riding conditions well.

Of course, there is the reality though that you would now have one more thing to charge.  For most riders, that’d be charging it once every 1-2 weeks depending on how much you ride.  I found it held a charge well, where in cases that I was travelling for a few weeks I had no problems coming back to using it without charging.  And of course, if you don’t like this particular style/model of helmet, then you’re currently up a creek without preforming some helmet transplant surgery.

I’d have no problem recommending it, though, I think unless you needed it immediately it may be worth waiting until they release the new dual ANT+/BLE models in about two months – since that will make the unit effectively ‘future-proof’ in that you can choose any sports device on the market today without concern for protocols.  Further, the helmet is a bit pricier than it was when it initially hit crowd-funding sites at sub-$200.  Where now it’s $249US.

As always, thanks for reading!  And if you have any questions – feel free to drop them below!

Retweet 26 Like 160 Google +1 22

54 Comments

  1. AKW

    Now that is a cool bit of kit.

    Reply
  2. scott buchanan

    Thanks for the review, Its a product I'd be very interested in. It has the CE mark so ticks all the box's in terms of being a safe helmet but visually at least I'm a tad bit concerned looking the size of the ventilation gaps/holes that it could provide enough heat evacuation so as not to over heat on a long hot ride. Also with that in mind how affected (if any) would the optical sensor be when combined with a sweaty contact? Thoughts appreciated.

    Reply
    • Rainmaker replied

      No problems with sweat. That's one of the main reasons I did indoor workouts with it, was to sweat it up (I lack AC or a fan most of the time). So I'm drenched.

      Reply
    • Shion replied

      Hey Scott, just as a heads up: the CE marking is not designating any kind of safety - it is just a self-certified marking by the manufacturer, stating conformity regarding free movement and sale of the product throughout the EU. It´s rather about trade, not technical and safety standards.

      Reply
    • Chris replied

      Shion, the CE stamp on a helmet actually does indeed indicate that it passed certain safety tests. The stamp is also required to be sold in Europe.

      Reply
    • Nick replied

      Just confirming that this is incorrect: The CE mark *does* mean the helmet meets the EN 1078 safety standard.

      See link to xsportsprotective.com for the details.

      Reply
    • Aart replied

      Heat is not the problem….I use the helmet in Israel….temperature gets up to 30 degrees Celsius….(and higher , but than the bike is inside…..
      Going up the hills you for sure can sweat here.

      The helmets are made by Fazer…one of the best brands in the world...

      Reply
  3. Drew

    Ray,
    Very interesting and pragmatic integration of two pieces of equipment - particularly, if you are in the market for a new helmet.

    Any statements relative to the helmet's comfort?

    Also, the slight adjustment to picture of the helmet weight is that you also get to drop the weight of your HRM and strap, which is probably is 40g-50g range. And, I've generally found riding with a HRM strap to be a bit of an annoyance.

    Look forward to your thoughts...
    Drew

    Reply
    • Rainmaker replied

      I found the helmet quite comfortable. Then again, I tend not to be bothered as much by comfort as some people, so perhaps I'm not the best subject there.

      I'll continue using it as my primary helmet, simply so I don't have to deal with a chest strap on rides - especially cooler spring/fall rides where sometimes the chest strap is finicky but I'm wearing lighter clothing (versus heavier stuff that causes more sweat and reduces issues).

      Reply
    • Pat replied

      I'm the one who transplanted the smarts of the helmet into a different helmet. I used a Giro Aeon helmet, mostly because I couldn't stand the Lazer helmet. I just couldn't find a comfortable adjustment for it. I love the idea, but find it sad that you are forced to use a specific brand of helmet. Considering there isn't much to the system (basically the sensor/padding strip attached with Velcro, and the smarts in the plastic enclosure on the back of the helmet), I'd like to see Lifebeam come up with a "guts only" version. Until then, I'll ride with my Frankenstein Giro Aeon!

      Reply
    • Jason K replied

      The other concern I would have is if you crash now you have to buy a whole new helmet again. Additionally if you are riding in cold weather and put a liner cap under won't you be blocking the sensor?

      Reply
    • @Jason K @Euen Henry
      Great Question
      LifeBEAM follows Lazersport Crash Replacement Policy and works closely with them on crash replacement claims. Basically helmet can be replaced with in three years of purchase at a reduced price if it was involved in an accident.
      We hope it never comes to this though!

      Contact our support team for more details
      Ride Safe,
      The LifeBEAM Team
      support@life-beam.com

      Reply
  4. Sucking Wind

    As always, another great review. Thanks for your thoroughness and beautiful pictures!

    Reply
  5. Michael

    It might shave a little time off of T2 as you'd no longer need to remove the helmet in order to have HR data for your run.

    Reply
  6. Erwin

    The links in the table dont work, they redirect to link to dcrainmaker.com etc. (for all 4 products)

    Also it looks like the Wahoo Tickr was available some 8 months before it was announced :)

    Does it have to be on tight? I'd imagine if you frown/have wrinkles/squint your eyes in the sun (Arizona here) it might lose alignment..

    Reply
    • Rainmaker replied

      Strange, not sure why they were doing that. Simply reset the links in the database and they appear all good now. Thanks for the heads up!

      As for tightness, no, just normal tight. Same as I'd always wear a helmet. You don't want it bobbling around your head for safety reasons, but it feels the same tightness to me as my other helmet. Just comfy.

      Reply
  7. RV

    It is very interesting, hover 80% of the time I cycle with a buff under my helmet and below with a windstopper hat. This would make this type of sensor useless. Unfortunately, though the idea is very nice. This of course varies per person.

    Reply
    • Moran Zilberg replied

      I'm also used to ride with a cycling cap or bandana. Since I purchased the Lifebeam Smart helmet I simply pull my headwear a bit up and let the optical sensor touching my forehead. Works great for me!

      Reply
  8. Snusmumrik

    My LifeBeam helmet does not work nearly as well as yours, sadly.

    When I first turn it on, it works for a while, but the heart rate will then begin to drift
    upwards or downwards, where it will stabilize and not change significantly
    even despite significant changes in actual heart rate, effort and position of the helmet.

    The only thing that seems to work is a reboot of the helmet (turning
    the helmet off and then on). This however, only fixes the issue for a while, as the drift will again appear after a time.

    The helmet is the correct size, and I've been experimenting with securing the
    helmet more or less firmly, trying to get it to work, but this has not helped.

    In fact, securing it tightly has only given me a very visible mark in the skin of my forehead in the shape of the sensor, which lasts for a quite a while after a ride! Securing it as tightly as possible gives me slight headaches, so I'm thinking the sensor should work with a fit closer to normal.

    It's indeed excellent for the initial period, when it works. I just wish it worked for me all the time!

    Reply
    • Morey000 replied

      "My LifeBeam helmet does not work nearly as well as yours, sadly."

      This was also a test of the Mio Link, apparently. And Ray's Link tracked beautifully, whereas other people have had more mixed results with the optical sensor. I'm wondering if Ray get's sent units that are higher performing (not uncommon with normal component spec variation). Hand picked ones.

      Perhaps Ray is going to need to start ordering his products under a fictitious name. (although - it would make it hard for him to get his hands on the pre-productions units)

      Reply
    • Drew220 replied

      I have the same issue Snusmumrik. My life beam helmet is very inconsistent. It worked great at first, but now It will work sometimes and won't at others The heat rate will either be super low or way to high and will drift. I was going max heart rate the other day and the helmet was only reading 71 BPM. A reboot will sometimes fix it, but it will slowly drift over time. It's worse than a heart rate strap :(

      I'm done with mine and will probably look into a mio link.

      Reply
    • Patrick Brochu replied

      Mine has been working flawlessly with no drift whatsoever. I wonder is skin color, blood pressure, or other variables can affect it??

      Reply
    • Rainmaker replied

      Well, except my Mio Link production ones "hand-picked" and send to me don't really work well either. So I'm in the same boat as others. In the case of the Smart helmet, it came from the same production batch - they just re-directed shipping.

      Just in case you're curious, I do actually get production units out of retail locale - without any knowledge of my name. ;) Obviously, as you pointed out that doesn't help the pre-prod scenario, but I think the Link is the first time I've really seen such cases where it's just being troubling.

      Reply
    • Isaiah replied

      I got the link and have been pretty disappointed with it so far after your positive pre-review look at it. Do you think it's a firmware or hardware issue with the production units? Have you heard anything from Mio about the issues?

      Thanks

      Reply
    • Rainmaker replied

      I'm reasonably certain it's firmware. They cut the power transmission output to try and get more battery power. While that wouldn't affect the readings piece (in theory), it's definitely affecting my ability for units to pick it up.

      They have been talking to me, as well as actively responding to comments. It sounds like a firmware update is in the works.

      Reply
    • Isaiah replied

      Awesome. Thanks

      Reply
    • @Snusmumrik @Drew220
      Thank you for your feedback.

      We are sorry to hear that you are experiencing heart rate inaccuracies.
      If you haven't yet contacted our support, please do, so we can work on a solution ASAP.
      It’s important to mention that customer satisfaction and product feedback is our top priority, so feel free to contact us with every little problem or feedback in the future.

      Ride safe :)
      The LifeBEAM Team
      support@life-beam.com

      Reply
    • Snusmumrik replied

      I've now been in contact with LifeBeam regarding the drift and inaccuracies in heart
      rate readings that my helmet exhibited.

      It appears that I've simply been unlucky to get a helmet with a malfunctioning sensor, and after determining this, LifeBeam arranged for a new helmet to be sent.

      They were very proactive in seeking out a solution and even set up a video call to resolve the issue. In fact, I have never experienced this kind of dedication in customer relations in dealing with any company before.

      I'm now looking forward to soon getting a working helmet!

      Reply
  9. Interested if the sensor works well if you're wearing a skullcap under your helmet?

    Reply
    • Rainmaker replied

      No, since it requires direct skin contact for the optical piece.

      Reply
  10. N Ray

    Ray

    Thanks for your in-depth review of all the stuffs. I really appreciate the kind of effort you put into.
    I am eagerly awaiting for your full review of mio link. Based on your review I'll decide whether to buy the same or to go for traditional chest strap.

    thanks again
    N Ray

    Reply
  11. Ehhhh one more thing to charge? I think I"m out. But this is a great great review, I love it :)

    Reply
  12. Everyday Fella

    Very nice writeup! Impressive accuracy!

    Does it work when you run as well, or just biking? Do you know if this Lifebeam group is using PerformTek (the stuff that Scosche, Intel, and LG are using)?

    Reply
    • Rainmaker replied

      I didn't try running with it unfortunately. Though, I see they do sell a headband of sorts.

      No, the technology is developed in-house and is not from Valencell/PerformTek. Which means there appears to be three companies that are able to correctly get HR data during athletic performances (with products on the market):

      A) Mio, with Mio Link/Alpha (underlying sensor from Phillips)
      B) Valencell, with Scosche, iRiver, Intel, and a few others
      C) LifeBeam, with Smart helmet + other upcoming 3rd party products

      There are other companies working on athletic focused sensors, for example Texas Instruments. But I'm not aware of any specific 3rd party product that's using it.

      Reply
  13. With this being a safety helmet what happenes if you crash and damage the helmet. Is there a discount replacement policy. If I crash with my chest strap on, no problem. @ $250 not cool.

    Reply
  14. EddNog

    Completely off topic, but do you really leave the Switch Aero seatpost in aero position like that while riding road, without your clip-ons on? O.o

    -Ed

    Reply
    • Rainmaker replied

      Not normally. I had gone out for a short test ride and had removed the bars and forgot to swap the seat-post back.

      Reply
  15. Hey Ray,

    No Love for the Cycle Ops powerCal in the HR database? (or in the power meter database for that matter?)

    Reply
    • Rainmaker replied

      Ask and you shall receive. Just added to HR database. I've got a small list of ones to add in over the next few days. Just started with the most popular ones.

      Reply
    • mitch w. replied

      You're too quick to respond. You sir are a gentleman and a scholar. Thanks for your reviews and insights.

      btw I recently purchased a Fenix 2 and gsc10 using your Amazon link (which worked out great because I had a bunch of Amazon gift cards burning a hole in my pocket). Can't wait till it arrives.

      Reply
    • Rainmaker replied

      Thanks for the support, I appreciate it!

      Reply
    • Kiri replied

      Thanks for your review! Looks like a cool product. I don't like HR straps because they leave a red mark across my chest. I think The Girl has the same problem..?

      Love your reviews. Have your amazon link set up in my bookmarks so you should get something from my immense Amazon habit...!

      Reply
    • Rainmaker replied

      Thanks for the support via Amazon shopping!

      Reply
  16. Dave Ruso

    What a professional review!! Kudos!! I am definitely going to order their next version

    Reply
  17. Orson Stolarski

    Thanks Rainmaker for the great review!
    I'm using the Lifebeam helmet for 2 months and very happy with it! Beautiful design, works like a magic!
    I was planing to buy a second helmet as a present for my wife (she hates the chest strap!) but since you mentioned the 2nd generation with dual connectivity (ANT+ & BLE) I'll wait 2 months for that!

    Reply
  18. Paul

    48....... 48..... your heart beat goes as low as 48!!! You are one fit cookie. The next time my heart beat goes that low, they'll be burying me.

    :-)

    Reply
  19. Aart

    I had to get a TomTom to get a reading of the heart beat for the Bluetooth version as the iPhone did not work. It is working now for some weeks

    Mine is on the Garmin with ANT+ and this works fine.......and….as I
    challenged Lifebeam how accurate it is….I had to check it and bought
    separately a Polar, with belt around the breast.....and I must say…..Lifebeam
    was very correct!!
    Due to refreshment time etc there may be a difference sometimes of 1 or 2
    beats, but for the rest it gives the same data !! (which seems to confirm
    that I have 1 heart and that the beat is equal in my head as in my
    chest....;-)
    I have had a few bike helmets by now (2 were severely damaged in some "
    accidents" so needed to be replaced.....but I must say this is a very good
    and convenient helmet.

    Would I recommend this Lifebeam helmet to others..... Yes, absolutely !!

    Reply
  20. Mr Nofish

    Ok, it's close enough but not as good as ye-olde-belt, it's not exactly cheap (VS HR belt), it requires USB to charge (VS a simple coin cell), it's yet another thing to remember to keep charged (again VS coin cell), when the LiIon battery goes belly up you scrap it, it doesn't work if you put anything under your helmet, be it summer or winter, and on top of it, if you crash you'd likely be replacing the whole thing.

    I'm not quite positive this is the silliest placement for a heart rate sensor I've ever heard of, but it certainly comes close. Even for those who hate the HR belt with a passion, there must be a better solution.

    Anyone who doesn't think this is a gimmick, I have a dual mode ANT+/BT Smart power meter bridge I'd like to talk you about. It even comes with an iPhone App to roll it up and down.

    @ Paul I'm nowhere near as fast as Ray, yet my resting heart rate is around 40 (and on occasions I've gone even lower). On the flip side, it never went very high either, 182 is my recorded maximum. When fully detrained it goes back up to around 60.

    Not that this means anything on its own, and being fit is about so much more than your heart rate number in any given condition.

    Reply
  21. Mike

    Seems like a perfect replacement for a chest strap. You mentioned it being another thing that cyclist would have to charge. I already am charging lights, my garmin, cell phone, girl friends lights and cannot imagine what your charging station looks like. Any good solutions to charging many things at once?

    Reply
  22. Jacob

    I'm sure you have seen many pictures of what happens to a helmet in an accident.
    Does the company offer any kind of warranty for accidents?
    Or if the systems survive a crash and the helmet does not, can they re-install the system in a new helmet?

    Reply
  23. I noticed that LifeBEAM is now selling a hat with a sensor. Ray, any chance for you to get your hands on one and review it?

    Reply

Post a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked.
If you would like a profile picture, simply register at Gravatar, which works here on DCR and across the web.

*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>