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Discussion Starter #1
I believe the NXR is also known as the RF1200 in some markets.

I bought the Scrambler 400 used as my first bike and I bought the NRX as my first helmet so I don't have any comparison. I am getting terrible noise from wind buffeting / turbulence. So loud I can barely hear the exhaust.

The noise can start at as low a speed as 60km/h but not always. At 100km/h the noise is guaranteed to be there and above 100km/h it just gets worse. There is also severe drag from wind hitting my chest at 100km/h and over and I don't dare let go of the handlbars.. but maybe this is normal with a naked bike..

I have managed to improve the noise issue using a few layers including a merino balaclava, a Revit Urbano windcollar, and another neck sleeve which I fold up and stuff into the bottom of my helmet to help seal the gap. This has improved the issue to the extent that I don't feel like I am going to go deaf after a 30 minute ride. But in summer we get 30 C so this is going to be awfully hot.

I am also wearing ear plugs.

I am wondering if this issue is mostly caused by the bike or by the helmet. If I lift my head and sit back the noise improves slightly and if I lean forward and down the noise gets worse, as I guess I am leaning into the turbulent airflow.

The bike did come with a screen which I removed trying to solve this issue, but after a few rides I am not sure if there was any difference with the screen on or off.

Does anyone not have this issue with any other type of helmet?
 

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I was going to suggest ear plugs, but I see you are wearing them already. Make sure you get them fit in correctly. If you are new to plugs, check out some videos, most people wear them incorrectly. You will never get it silent, but it should be bearable. I have a Shoei Neotec II, I had to remove the under chin seal, as the helmet got too hot with it in. Some helmets are quieter than others.
 

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Unfortunately noise affects everybody differently and as this is your first bike and first helmet it Is impossible for you to have any point of comparison and for us to offer any sensible advice. Riding a motorcycle is noisy compared to being cocooned inside a car. You get wind pressure on your chest riding a naked or near naked motorcycle and the faster you travel the more pressure there is.
You seem to have taken all the practical steps that you have to reduce the effects of noise. You did not say what ear plugs you are using but there are good and not so good ones right up to custom fitted products so maybe some experimentation with different plugs could be worthwhile.
Is your helmet the correct size? Who fitted it for you? A helmet that is too large will let way more air in and will always be noisy.
I noticed you used the word buffeting. Buffeting is a different issue. Buffeting is when your head is being shaken from side to side due to uneven air flow. It sounds to me like your issue is just wind noise.
 

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I agree with K1W1. If this is your first experience on two wheels I'm guessing you'll really feel it, especially on a naked bike.

One thing I always say re any perceived stability issues is try and relax your grip on the bars and concentrate on griping the tank with your knees, slouch a little if this is more comfy. A death grip on the bars exaggerates every tiny bump and wobble caused by road surfaces, wind, passing traffic, etc etc etc, making things seem a lot worse than they are. The bike will find its own path through these things. (Apologies if I'm teaching you to suck eggs!). And wind noise is amazingly loud - it can actually damage your ears over time if you don't wear plugs etc. My helmet fits quite tight and snug which helps and I do wear ear plugs on longer journeys but it's still fairly noisy tbh, relatively speaking.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Unfortunately noise affects everybody differently and as this is your first bike and first helmet it Is impossible for you to have any point of comparison and for us to offer any sensible advice. Riding a motorcycle is noisy compared to being cocooned inside a car. You get wind pressure on your chest riding a naked or near naked motorcycle and the faster you travel the more pressure there is.
You seem to have taken all the practical steps that you have to reduce the effects of noise. You did not say what ear plugs you are using but there are good and not so good ones right up to custom fitted products so maybe some experimentation with different plugs could be worthwhile.
Is your helmet the correct size? Who fitted it for you? A helmet that is too large will let way more air in and will always be noisy.
I noticed you used the word buffeting. Buffeting is a different issue. Buffeting is when your head is being shaken from side to side due to uneven air flow. It sounds to me like your issue is just wind noise.
It is mostly noise but sometimes there is also some minor buffeting where the helmet is being pushed up at the front, but only sometimes and the force is only minor.

I'm using the pinlock ear plugs, I think they are good enough if it wasn't for the wind noise. I might try the moulded plugs.

The helmet is the correct size for my head but it is an extra large and I don't have a thick body builder neck so the padding is not tight around the neck area. But if it were any tighter around the neck I wouldn't get it over my ears.

The helmet was fitted by an experienced motorcyclist and sales person. I had tried on a few other brands but Shoei was the only helmet brand that was not uncomfortable. I forgot to try on the Neotec II which is one of the options I was considering. Maybe this would have been a better option as it is designed as a touring helmet, I guess for a more upright position.


I am trying to establish if the noise issue is caused mostly by the bike or by the helmet. If it is the bike then I can consider trading the bike in. I actually wanted an XSR700 but I got this bike used at half price.

If I know I can solve the issue with a difference helmet then I will buy a new helmet and save this one for when I have a different bike in the future. My heads not getting any bigger..
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Try a new helmet - but don't buy via the Internet. Test it on your bike as every head is different. I am very happy with my Shoei GT Air-I.
That is an option but unfortunately they don't have any test ride helmets. So I don't want two ~NZ$1000 helmets that have the same issue if it is the bike causing the issue.

So you don't have any wind noise with the GT Air 1? I was looking at the GT Air 2 but bought the NXR..
 

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It is mostly noise but sometimes there is also some minor buffeting where the helmet is being pushed up at the front, but only sometimes and the force is only minor.

I forgot to try on the Neotec II which is one of the options I was considering. Maybe this would have been a better option as it is designed as a touring helmet, .
Looks like you did the right thing as far as helmet fitting is concerned.
The helmet being pushed up is still not buffeting. That is helmet lift. That is a bit of a worry as modern helmets are generally designed aerodynamically to reduce lift. Usually these days the only helmets that lift are ADV style ones with peaks and even then not much. If you can have a think about your riding position it sounds like you might be sitting on the bike with your chin up or perhaps you have the helmet on your head tilted a bit backwards. Can't really tell over the Internet unfortunately.
The Neotec won't be a help to you as far as noise is concerned. Flip front helmets are always noisier than one piece helmets and the Neotec II I own is no exception. I reckon it is at least as noisy as by ADV helmet and I ride with the visor up on that helmet almost all the time.
If you have a Shoei head you have a Shoei head and you will probably not find a more comfortable helmet. I current own three Shoei's and basically won't even bother trying other helmets on.
The noise is not going to go away so mitigation is the only real answer. My suggestion is to either try a couple of different brands of ear plugs or go the whole way and get custom fitted ones. If you go the custom route get them fitted by somebody experienced in ear plugs for motorcyclists. Take your helmet when the ear plugs are fitted and make sure you put your helmet on and take it off a couple of times with the plugs in your ears before you leave. It is not uncommon for custom ear plugs to pull out of riders ears as they take their helmets off if they are not fitted just right.
 

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I do have only very little wind noise in my GT Air 1 - really no issue. I had extreme noise earlier when I used this helmet with my BMW R1200GS before I bought my "naked" Scrambler. I am also looking for a good offer for the GT Air-2 in next year as all helmets "age" and there should be a new one every 5 years......
 

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I believe the NXR is also known as the RF1200 in some markets.

I bought the Scrambler 400 used as my first bike and I bought the NRX as my first helmet so I don't have any comparison. I am getting terrible noise from wind buffeting / turbulence. So loud I can barely hear the exhaust.

The noise can start at as low a speed as 60km/h but not always. At 100km/h the noise is guaranteed to be there and above 100km/h it just gets worse. There is also severe drag from wind hitting my chest at 100km/h and over and I don't dare let go of the handlbars.. but maybe this is normal with a naked bike..

I have managed to improve the noise issue using a few layers including a merino balaclava, a Revit Urbano windcollar, and another neck sleeve which I fold up and stuff into the bottom of my helmet to help seal the gap. This has improved the issue to the extent that I don't feel like I am going to go deaf after a 30 minute ride. But in summer we get 30 C so this is going to be awfully hot.

I am also wearing ear plugs.

I am wondering if this issue is mostly caused by the bike or by the helmet. If I lift my head and sit back the noise improves slightly and if I lean forward and down the noise gets worse, as I guess I am leaning into the turbulent airflow.

The bike did come with a screen which I removed trying to solve this issue, but after a few rides I am not sure if there was any difference with the screen on or off.

Does anyone not have this issue with any other type of helmet?
I just replaced my 6 year old Scorpion helmet with a Shoei RF1200. I have a CR. Compared to my cheap Scorpion, the RF1200 absolutely has worse aerodynamics. If the RF1200 isn't at just the right angle in the wind, I can get whistling, excessive buffeting, and reverberation. All this is on top of regular wind noise and average normal buffeting.

My vote is that it's the helmet that's the problem. But maybe your height and how high your head rides on the bike makes a difference, and some might not have a problem. I don't know.
 

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Maybe bikes aren’t your thing. Riding a bike is inherently noisy and theres going to be drag no matter what helmet you purchase Because you’re moving at speed through air. the question you’ve got to ask yourself is what are your expectations? Are you thinking it’ll be quiet like in a car? Did you try installing the chin guard? That helped me a lot with the noise and air dragging up.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Maybe bikes aren’t your thing. Riding a bike is inherently noisy and theres going to be drag no matter what helmet you purchase Because you’re moving at speed through air. the question you’ve got to ask yourself is what are your expectations? Are you thinking it’ll be quiet like in a car? Did you try installing the chin guard? That helped me a lot with the noise and air dragging up.
😄

My expectation is not to go deaf commuting to work. I have the chin guard installed, I think it made a small difference.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I just replaced my 6 year old Scorpion helmet with a Shoei RF1200. I have a CR. Compared to my cheap Scorpion, the RF1200 absolutely has worse aerodynamics. If the RF1200 isn't at just the right angle in the wind, I can get whistling, excessive buffeting, and reverberation. All this is on top of regular wind noise and average normal buffeting.

My vote is that it's the helmet that's the problem. But maybe your height and how high your head rides on the bike makes a difference, and some might not have a problem. I don't know.
Well I tried some different ear plugs today, the foam type. They wouldn't stay in my ears and I noticed the noise was worse than with using the pinlock type which I normally use.

I will buy some moulded ear plugs and see how that goes.

I went into the shop and they were surprised but have agreed to help solve the problem. One of the guys thinks the cheek pads in the XL may be too small as my head can move slightly side to side holding the helmet still. I tried the size L again and it is definitely too small with a pressue point on the forehead. They will be speaking to the supplier to source some larger cheek pads.
 

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Put the helmet on. Open the visor.
With one hand on the back of the helmet above the top of your ears push forward and down.
You should be able to just insert the first two fingers of your other hand into the gap between the centre of your forehead and the front edge of the helmet.
Any decent experienced helmet fitter should be able to demonstrate the technique.
If you cannot fit your fingers in the helmet is too tight.
If your fingers slide In and wobble about your helmet is too lose.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
Put the helmet on. Open the visor.
With one hand on the back of the helmet above the top of your ears push forward and down.
You should be able to just insert the first two fingers of your other hand into the gap between the centre of your forehead and the front edge of the helmet.
Any decent experienced helmet fitter should be able to demonstrate the technique.
If you cannot fit your fingers in the helmet is too tight.
If your fingers slide In and wobble about your helmet is too lose.

I did as described and I can barely get my fingers in. But the helmet does not feel too loose or too tight as described above. Also there are no pressue points anywhere in the helmet, the helmet is still very comfortable after riding for three hours.

I have ridden with helmets that don't fit right before. As a pizza delivery rider for a year or two in my student years (16 years ago) and also on the learner bike course earlier this year, so I know that only after a short time the pressure points really make themselves known.

Interestingly I never wore ear plugs where I was riding the pizza delivery scooter with an open face helmet and I never noticed any excessive noise issues but the maximum speed was about 60km/h.

I have had tinnitus since I was a teenager from listening to rage against the machine on my walkman with ear buds at maximum volume on the bus... but I never noticed an increase in tinnitus wearing the open face helmet on the scooter, from memory..

Wearing this helmet I notice an increased ringing in my ears immediately while I am riding when the wind noise occurs.. so this is not ideal..

My opinion is the helmet fit is good. I don't think it is the cheek pads which is what the shop assistant thinks may be the issue.

If the issue is with the helmet insulation the I think it may be a couple of things. There is a void space in the padding for the ear to fit, this may be too large with not enough insulation. There may be a small gap in the neck padding under and behind the ear position in the design of the cheek pads where they attach to the helmet rim.

But the noise seems to be coming from above and slightly to the rear of my ears, so that makes me think it is the rear wing or the design of the rear of the helmet that is causing the issue. In which case I bought a NZ$1250 paper weight (price with transition visor).

I am really thinking of buying another helmet. Financially it makes sense as my commute is 300km a week so I am saving $100 a week in gas, but I don't want to go deaf.. Hopefully the shop will let me test ride the next one though.

I really like the look of the Arai XD-4 but unfortunately it creates a pressure point on my forehead and I found the padding not as soft as the Shoei. Apart from this damning issue, the Shoei NXR is perfectly comfortable..
 

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I really like the look of the Arai XD-4 but unfortunately it creates a pressure point on my forehead and I found the padding not as soft as the Shoei. Apart from this damning issue, the Shoei NXR is perfectly comfortable..
I'm a new rider too (just over a year) so here are my thoughts on your issue. Keep in mind that I almost always ride with earplugs.

I have Shoei GT-Air (2018) and the Arai XD-4 (2020).Considering your situation, the Arai XD-4 would be a mistake. Its heavier and noisier than the Shoei, plus the visor makes it much more uncomfortable at high speeds (although you can ride without it).

I don't think there is a helmet out there that will help you with your wind problem. I used a 2019 Shoei NXR from a friend and my GT-Air was quieter and felt more aerodynamic (Shoei being the quieter helmets that I've tried amongst Arai, Schuberth, HJC and Shark).

I ride a 2019 Icon with the stock exhaust and from 90 km/h onward, unless I'm reving the engine a lot, I can't hear the exhaust either (with or without earplugs).

A pair of earplugs were what made a huge difference for me. I tried a few different types and the best ones ended up being the typical cheap foamy earplugs. I do wear them the other way around though for maximum blockage!

Once you get that sorted and understand that there are better and worse days wind wise to ride, you will get used to the wind hitting you and you will learn to relax your hands.

Wearing this helmet I notice an increased ringing in my ears immediately while I am riding when the wind noise occurs.. so this is not ideal..
This sounds pretty bad... perhaps the first step is to get your ears checked to avoid possible damage?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
The shop assistant mentioning the cheek pads got me thinking, there isn't a lot of padding above my head and the ventilation channels are moulded into the expanding foam a gap here could be causing some of the noise. I stuck a bit of 8mm thick closed cell foam inside the helmet and it still goes on my head. I think it has made a difference in lowering the severity of the noise, it is still there but maybe not as loud. Hopefully the shop can help me with this.

So it looks like the helmet doesn't fit right after all. I could tolerate this for up to two hours before a sore spot appeared on the top of my head, this is about the same amount of time as I can tolerate the terrible seat so no big deal.



 

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Discussion Starter #18
I don't think there is a helmet out there that will help you with your wind problem. I used a 2019 Shoei NXR from a friend and my GT-Air was quieter and felt more aerodynamic (Shoei being the quieter helmets that I've tried amongst Arai, Schuberth, HJC and Shark).
I went to the shop thinking I was probably going to buy the GT Air 2 and came back with the NXR, not sure how that happened. Good to know that there is a quieter option though, thanks for confirming. I may still get the GT Air 2 if the padding solution doesn't work, hopefully the shop to let me test ride it..
 

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I may still get the GT Air 2 if the padding solution doesn't work, hopefully the shop to let me test ride it..
I have a GT Air 1 and, unlike @surfguy, I have not been overly impressed with the wind noise. One of my purchase decisions was reviews regarding minimal wind noise. While my experience sounds better than the one you are having, I will be looking at a different Shoei when it is time to upgrade. Just giving you my two cents on the earlier version of the helmet you are considering.
 
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