Review: Giro's New Tyrant Helmet

Aug 5, 2019
by Mike Kazimer  

Giro's new Tyrant helmet is aimed at riders who tend to push things to the limit, whether that's at the dirt jumps or out on a trail ride. “Style over speed” is supposed to be the marketing tag line, but that doesn't really resonate with me – after all, why not be fast and stylish? I do understand the sentiment, though; the Tyrant wasn't made for XC racers where ventilation and lightweight are the top priorities, and it's not for enduro racers who need DH-certified full face helmets.

Instead, it's for anyone who wants a little extra protection just in case that whip doesn't come back around in time, or a two-wheeled drift turns into a full body drift right off the trail.

Giro Tyrant Details

• Roc-Loc Air DH fit system
• MIPS Spherical
• Adjustable visor
• Weight: 623 grams (medium)
• 5 color options
• Sizes: S, M, L
• CPSC, CE, and AS/NZS certified
• MSRP: $150 USD
www.giro.com
The Tyrant has a clean and simple look to it, with a silhouette that was obviously inspired by the classic 70s era skate / BMX helmet profile. But while the look may have a throwback vibe to it, the Tyrant is equipped with a very modern safety feature in the form of MIPS Spherical.


The Tyrant uses a layer of EPS foam to help with larger, higher speed impacts, and a second layer of EPP for slower speed impacts.

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First used in Giro's Avance ski helmet, and also seen in the Bell Super DH, MIPS Spherical uses two separate layers of foam connected by elastomers, which allow the two layers to move independently. The idea is that during a crash the outer layer is able to rotate enough to help dissipate a portion of the impact force, reducing the amount of stress that reaches the brain. EPS (expanded polystyrene) foam is used for that outer layer in order to deal with high speed impacts, while softer EPP (expanded polypropylene) foam sits closer to the rider's head to help with slower speed impacts


The fit can be fine tuned using Giro's Roc Loc DH retention system.

There are a total of fourteen vents, including the ones over each ear, along with internal channeling to help direct the air towards the back of the helmet. Giro's Roc Loc DH retention system is used to adjust the fit via a ratcheting, rubberized dial, and there are also multiple height positions to adjust where that system sits against the back of the head. The visor is adjustable too, and there are two different cheek pad thicknesses included with each helmet for further customization.

There are a total of five different color options – three of them are some shade of grey or black, along with a fluorescent yellow Citron, and a greenish Spruce colorway. Available in sizes S, M, and L, the Tyrant retails for $150 USD.

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Ready for blastoff.

Ride Impressions

I'll often wear Giro's Switchblade helmet without the chinbar in the winter time due to the extra warmth it provides, but when summer rolls around it gets pushed to the back of the shelf in favor of lighter and airier options. With the Tyrant, I've taken it on multiple rides where the temperatures were in the high 70s (26° C) and haven't felt like I was getting too overheated. Yes, it is noticeably warmer than a typical half shell, but the fit and vent position around the ears makes it feel less stifling than the Switchblade, giving it a much wider range of usable temperatures.

The overall fit was snug and comfortable on my relatively oval-shaped head - the dial at the back of the helmet is easy to reach, and once I had everything adjusted I rarely needed to touch it. The Tyrant weighs a couple hundred grams more than a typical half shell, but that weight is well dispersed. It's not overly top heavy, and it didn't feel like my head was getting pulled downward at all in steeper terrain. If you really shake your head you can feel the two foam layers moving independently, but I didn't notice that out on the trail. Granted, I typically wore goggles on the descents, which helps cinch everything down even further.

On the topic of eyewear, there's no place to easily stash sunglasses if you're looking for a place to put them while climbing - the Tyrant is best suited to goggle usage anyways. One thing I did occasionally notice was the sound of the two foam layers rubbing on each other. It didn't bother me, and it was really only audible while climbing, but it's worth a mention.



Pros

+ Good ventilation considering the amount of coverage
+ MIPS Spherical technology
+ Comfortable, secure fit

Cons

- Heavier & warmer than a 'regular' half shell
- You can occasionally hear the two foam liners rubbing together
- No spot for sunglasses



Pinkbike's Take
bigquotesI'm a fan of the extended, over-the-ears coverage the Tyrant provides. It's not a replacement for a full face, or a lightweight half shell for that matter, but I see it as a worthy option for those in-between rides, the ones that have a decent amount of pedaling in order to access terrain where extra protection is warranted. It's more of a niche item, but I'm sure there are plenty of riders out there who are fitting candidates for this type of helmet.
Mike Kazimer








149 Comments

  • + 151
 Have people started falling on their ears recently or what?
  • + 4
 Minus the ears I like the more skate style shape but with a decent retention system and ventilation.
  • + 162
 Problem: Chin bars improve safety, but impede ventilation.
Solution: Remove the chin bar but make sure that ventilation stays bad.
  • + 3
 Hahaha
  • + 13
 maybe they want to break in to the baseball helmet industry???
  • + 7
 The helmet for people who prioritize their ears over their face.
  • + 34
 PROGRESSIVE TRAIL RIDERS TEND TO HAVE PROGRESSIVE FALLS THAT TEND TO AFFECT HEARING PROGRESSIVELY.
  • + 1
 This helmet is just designed to keep them from chewing and biting at their ears
  • + 1
 My dad just had a bad crash this year when he hit the side of his face and got a bad concussion and nearly fractures his eye socket and cheek bone because his helmet did nothing during the impact. This would have taken the blow and he would have walked away.
  • + 30
 @Ryan2949: A big 'maybe' needed there fella.
  • + 14
 Starship Troopers look is so in right now.
  • + 3
 Yeah, they seem to be on the FUGLY train
  • + 13
 Prototype was a pumpkin
  • + 2
 Watch your ears man, the trail gods may ear you to deaf
  • + 2
 Ratboy Endorsed.
  • + 1
 tree branches yo
  • + 1
 I had the visor of a kali lid crack and slice a nice part of my ear off with it, so ya you should cover those ears...
  • + 2
 @Ttimer: That's just it, worst of both worlds. Why someone would choose this over a Proframe or a Stage is beyond me
  • + 1
 How do protect the back of your head lower down almost at your neck and not cover your ears somewhat?
  • + 1
 @honourablegeorge: Proframe's visor is a joke and Stage costs like it was made of gold. Remember that you should replace the helmet after every crash! Helmets are disposable items.
  • + 54
 Does it come with a moped?
  • + 38
 I can't help but see Charlie Brown and his pumpkin helmet when I see this.

cache.desktopnexus.com/thumbseg/309/309157-bigthumbnail.jpg
  • + 7
 Looks a lil bit silly.
  • + 5
 It should have been called:
The Slopestyle or the Sender. Because it's clear that's the intended market for this helmet.
  • + 7
 mullet bike, meet mullet helmet.
  • + 1
 I immediately think of Special Ed on Crank Yankers
  • + 1
 +1 that was one of my favorite Peanuts videos growing up
  • + 2
 @endurocat: agreed. The “tyrant” name makes me think it should be available exclusively in orange, with some kind of Twitter interoperability.
  • + 2
 Didn't rick moranis wear this in spaceballs. He was also a tyrant.
  • + 1
 @bizutch: Bread makes me poop.
  • + 33
 "progressive trail riders" anyone else is riding regressively?
  • + 27
 My old age and lack of saddle time definitely puts myself into that category
  • + 3
 i ride degressive, so nothing to see here
  • + 30
 Not a fan of this style of helmet. If you are covering your ears, you may as well have a chin bar and protect your face. I’d take something like a Fox Proframe over this any day.
  • + 0
 But Proframe is s simple styrofoam helmet that doesn't even pretend that it is built to protect from concussions, especially slow speed.
  • + 25
 Everyone one hated the look of the switchblade but liked the removable chinbar, so with the newest helmet we made exactly the switchblade but now with no chinbar - Giro
  • + 8
 Most people I know liked the looks.
  • + 1
 @colincolin: I actually own a switchblade but basically just because my old shop was struggling to sell them so i took one to use as my full face. Problem is its almost pointless in halfshell form because the ear peices are the part that trap the most heat not the chin bar
  • + 19
 So if I get this helmet I will instantly ride as stylish as the 50to01 guys right?? Perfect
  • + 8
 And if I wear 2?
  • + 8
 @fracasnoxteam: you just instantly turn into Ratboy.....
  • + 11
 When you hear your mate saying: “I want to be as stylish as 50to01 guys” you have to hope he means riding...
  • + 16
 I could give a frog's fat ass about looks. I like these types of helmets. I like the added protection. Is it overkill? Maybe. But I like knowing there is extra protection there for the ole knoggin.
  • + 6
 For the same weight and (lack of) ventilation you can get a helmet with a chin bar that offers even more protection. The Tyrant is the worst of both worlds between fullface and half lid.
  • + 8
 @Ttimer: or less weight and more ventilation. Guarantee my TLD Stage is both lighter and more breathable than this.
  • + 4
 @mtnbykr05: @Ttimer

You know, you are actually right.
To be honest, I have been looking over the proframe, stage, and trajecta lately.
  • + 2
 I’ve had this discussion with riding buddies recently. Trails we used to ride with DH or FR bikes and Full Face are now ridden on AM or TR bikes with half lids.
I enjoy eating solid foods so much that a TLD Stage looks like a good idea.
  • + 18
 Their should be a Super Dave Osborne edition. Anyone old enough to remember Super Dave?
  • + 3
 Yes, genuine Saskatchewan sealskin bindingsSmile Definite retro look--Super Dave compilation--

m.youtube.com/watch?v=9kQ2h6fjRkc
  • + 1
 I actually just saw Super Dave(Bob Einstein) sadly just passed this year.
  • + 15
 looks like something an e-bike rider would wear Wink #moped
  • + 9
 Many BMXers switched over to 3/4 shells like the famous Protec Full Cut helmet years ago. I for one am very happy to see the MTBers catching on. Some of the dinky little trail helmets don't look like they'd do much.
  • + 1
 Same, I have the Fox Dropframe which is similar to this and I love it. I hope to never need the extra coverage but will happy it's there if I do.
  • + 9
 Is this canoeing helmet safe for bike riding?
  • + 5
 It is not about covering your ears but about protecting just more than your front scullcap.
I started using the switchblade and even if I will continue wearing my two half-shells, these kind of helmets are usefull. And: comfortable. But maybe you must have a pretty face to make it look allright Wink
  • + 8
 I think this helmet is ok for skiing on warmer days end of the season
  • + 7
 Rumour says that you'll get 151$ refund if post photo with your face visible wearing that helmet in public.
  • + 3
 @mikekazimer: Does the text flip EPP and EPS? In most helmet applications I've seen, the EPP is intended to help with low/mid speed impacts and the EPS is for higher speed impacts.

Here's Bell's description:
www.bellhelmets.com/technology/flex
  • + 3
 Good catch - EPP (expanded polypropylene) is the softer stuff, and that's the layer closer to a rider's head. The text has been updated.
  • + 3
 I like this style of helmet, I think the dropframe looks better though. They make sense to me for how i ride, just playing in the woods. With a full face you almost always take it of when pushing up, plus the chin guard is a pain when talking,drinking,spitting, picking your nose or having a smoke.????
  • + 5
 Was waiting/hoping for a lighter Switchblade, instead they just released a uglier version, without the chin bar, and not even lighter... massively disappointed
  • + 1
 Same here!
  • - 1
 Don't worry, I am sure they will fire someone over this
  • + 3
 I wear my chinbar-less Switchblade exactly like Mike does (though in different seasons as my climate is colder). I like the extra protection though.

People are laughing at the "progressive trail rider" language, but who this fits best is riders who want to be the 50:01 guys. Who are trying to jib and slide everything and so end up sliding out, tumbling, and generally saying hello to the ground a lot more than riders who want to cover ground quickly/efficiently.
  • + 2
 All the people hating...just keep with your half shell lids than won't do shit no matter how you crash...at least this helmet sure is structurally stronger, goes deeper, moved less, covers all the surface a full face helmet does excepts the chin, weights much less and you can breathe too. I feel I shouldn't be wearing anything with less protection tjan this
  • + 7
 Spaceballs the Helmet.
  • + 5
 Well, at least it's not ugly.
  • + 1
 I seem to remember the Bell Super got a lot of stick when it first came out and after a while that proved very popular. I’m sure this will do the same. It’s just a slightly more MTB version of the Protec full cut (with the obvious technology advances for added protection) and that has proven to be hugely successful in BMX.
  • + 0
 I don’t know, I’m usually one to take safety over looks, and recently had a crash where I used my face as an emergency brake, but I would never ride one of these over the ear helmets. They just look so goofy, and I can’t imagine that the ventilation around your ears is in any way comparable to a normal half shell.

And sure, the ear muffs may have prevented the scratched face, but judging from the big crack in my Ambush I doubt it would have done anything against the concussion.
  • + 3
 Can u get it with a part that comes around the front and covers your face as well? Seems like a good idea...
  • + 3
 My Super3R weighs a little more but covers my whole face with more vents. What's the point of this one?
  • + 2
 There are substantially more breathable full-face helmets on the market.. Its pretty much hot all over the world now and this just doesnt make an sense to me.
  • + 4
 The new Panty Dryer 5000!
  • + 3
 Just needs a JOFA mouthguard
  • + 1
 Shoulda just added some extra vents and made the a lighter half shell only Switchblade, would have had a winner on their hands.
  • + 2
 I never come down here for feedback on the article. It's always to have a good laugh at all you comedians lol its great ????
  • + 1
 I would say that Bell SuperDH with removed chin bar is as protective than this. And why? Because of its shape and its is so thick that your ears are guite good covered.
  • + 2
 No storage for glasses...but how does it sit when wearing glasses? Any pictures?
  • + 18
 Wearing glasses with his helmet is forbidden
  • + 0
 *this
  • + 3
 I just wish it had a place on top for a water bottle.
  • + 3
 Temps in the high 70s!!!! Outrageously hot!!!
  • + 2
 Looks like a combo of my first hockey helmet and a ProTec BMX lid with a visor stuck on. Additional protection is good.
  • + 1
 Is this spherical mips only rotating around one single axis? I guess no, otherwise it might be a useless complication in way too many cases.
  • + 2
 It's a sphere and rotates/spins around a single point.
  • + 1
 I actually took a huge slam in this helmet in April and can verify that MIPS Spherical works. I think I would have been in bad shape had I been wearing a normal half-lid.
  • + 11
 No you can’t. Please take the very same slam with a non-mips helmet for the sake of science. Thanks!
  • + 3
 Nice looking helmet, can't wait to get it for $70.
  • + 3
 That is a fvcking terrible looking helmet.
  • + 4
 Having kazimer as the model don’t help Big Grin
  • + 4
 @Matt115lamb, true, I'm better suited to full-face helmet modeling.
  • + 3
 Looks like an old fashioned kayaking helmet with a visor stuck on....
  • + 2
 oh FFS now we're just making stuff to make stuff
  • + 1
 The helmet is designed to protect your ears from debris when you skid into berms.
  • + 1
 Slightly modified version of the switchblade, and without the chin bar...lame.
  • + 2
 My heads sweating just looking at that
  • + 2
 Development method : ty rant error.
  • + 1
 The switchblade has easily been the most uncomfortable helmet I've tried. Can't see this new one being any better.
  • + 3
 I like it.
  • + 1
 ahh those were clap emojis. Trying to be progressive and up wit social media....
  • + 2
 NAILED IT!! jeez thats bad...takes me back to 80's bmx helmets.
  • + 1
 $150 is nothing when you consider the small fortune you will save in birth control expenses.
  • + 1
 another 70 grams and you can wear a full face Stage helmet, but who needs teeth, right?
  • + 2
 Many Brits agree with your statement
  • + 1
 Needs to come in a chrome addition with a free orange reflective vest tooo!
  • + 1
 Wonder if any of the developers that worked on this gem were part of the big layoffs at Giro?
  • + 2
 Anyone know why the buysell page won't let me just pick Canada now?
  • + 1
 It will.

source: I just did it.
  • + 0
 Now that all their product people have been laid off, this should be one of the last things from Giro for a while.
  • + 1
 Eddie 'The Eagle' Edwards approved.
  • + 1
 Wtf is jibbing? Is that like dogging for bikers?
  • + 1
 Ugliest ????Helmet ???? Ever!!!????????????????????????
  • + 1
 Shit! Did I miss it? Did we do the Area 51 thingy?
  • + 1
 Hockey helmet without the bars
  • + 2
 Gazoo!!!!
  • + 1
 Hhahaha .!!!!!
  • + 0
 Geez. All they did was take a snowboard/ski helmet and put a visor on it and add a few ear cut outs. Ridiculous.
  • + 1
 would Chuck Norris wear it?
  • + 1
 Bring back the Bell Pro Plus open-face!
  • + 1
 Too hot for my latitude, as was the blade...
  • + 1
 Seen a few guys wearing them. Just looks odd. Would not buy.
  • + 0
 It's like 10 years late and not as cool as the half head D2 by TLD
  • + 0
 KILL IT! KILL IT WITH FIRE!
  • + 0
 What's up with the ear helmets lately?
  • + 0
 What does "progressive trail rider" means?
  • + 0
 The Giro Tyrant - Keeping your ears and chastity safe!
  • - 1
 Doesn't look very ventilated. I bet a proframe or stage is cooler, and safer to boot.
  • - 2
 Amazing you can tell how safe a helmet is from a picture. You should work for a helmet company.
  • + 2
 @warmerdamj: having a chinbar means your face is protected. Having a chinbar is safer than not having one. This isn't complicated
  • + 1
 @warmerdamj: having owned and crashed in a switchblade and a stage, I feel confident saying the stage is cooler and safer than a switchblade sans le chin bar.
  • + 1
 @spaceofades: curious what happened with the blade in your crash? Stage looks like a sweet lid, but the price is north of practical to replace more than once a season
  • + 1
 @SacAssassin: shittered the switchblade last season with an otb on crabapple. To be fair, i don't think any lid would hold up to that. Stage hasn't had anything that destructive yet, but a few decent hits and no damage thus far
  • + 1
 @spaceofades: Thanks for the heads up. Always wondered how it would do in the event of a big crash. If your still riding, must have done its job. Wouldn't mind a cooler lid. Stage looks lime a solid performer
  • + 0
 They should have called it the Evander Holyfield
  • + 0
 Oh that looks like a sweet bump helmet for Special farces.
  • + 1
 No.
  • + 2
 I'll get you one for your birthday.
  • + 1
 @Larkey1: you missed it. Few weeks ago ????
  • + 0
 DownCountry (R) certified
  • - 1
 for those mountain bikes that want to look like a meme

i.kym-cdn.com/entries/icons/mobile/000/000/774/lime-cat.jpg
  • + 0
 What a goofy lookn lid...
  • + 1
 Looks mad goofy.
  • - 1
 But my pretty face?!
  • - 3
 IMHO on looks - this looks better then the fox proframe & bell super combined

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