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The Lumos Matrix is the ideal urban bike helmet for a smarter, safer day trip – TechCrunch

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The Lumos Matrix is the perfect city bike helmet for a better, safer day journey – TechCrunch

Many people are nonetheless kind of confined to our personal houses and restricted social areas for the foreseeable future, and for lots of you, that has led to a rediscovery of the thrill of biking. Bike using is a good way to spend time outdoor exploring your individual city or metropolis, and if you happen to’re simply stepping into exploring this pastime, or if you happen to’re a long-time bike rider in search of an improve, the Lumos Matrix smart helmet is a wise piece of tech with a strong design that mixes plenty of related options into one nice package deal.

The fundamentals

The Matrix is a model of Lumos’ sensible helmet up to date with fashionable, city helmet aesthetics and a brand new giant LED show on the again that may be programmed to point out quite a lot of completely different patterns, together with easy photos. It features a built-in entrance gentle along with the rear-light panel, in addition to built-in flip indicators that work with an included bodily handlebar distant, or in live performance with an Apple Watch app. It’s obtainable in both a gloss white end, or a matte black (as reviewed).

Picture Credit: Darrell Etherington

Lumos has designed the Matrix to work with a variety of head sizes, thanks partially to 2 units of included Velcro pads for the within of the helmet, however due principally to the adjustable, ratcheting sizing harness on the within. This may be simply dialed to tighten or loosen the helmet, serving to it match heads ranging between 22 and 24-inches in dimension.

The outside of the Lumos is manufactured from an ABS plastic that gives full weatherproofing, to be able to put on it within the rain with out having to fret concerning the situation of the embedded electronics. There’s additionally a MIPS (Multi-directional Affect Safety System) choice which you can add in order for you an extra stage of security and safety, although that’s not but delivery and ought to be “obtainable quickly,” in keeping with the corporate.

Picture Credit: Darrell Etherington

A button built-in into the helmet’s strap enables you to flip it on and off, and cycle between the built-in patterns. You’ll be able to pair the helmet by way of Bluetooth together with your smartphone, too, and use the devoted app to customise options, together with brightness, and even create your individual customized patterns for the rear show. Within the field, you’ll additionally discover a charging cable with a regular USB A connector on one finish, and a proprietary magnetic charging floor on the opposite for powering up each your helmet and the handlebar distant.

Design and efficiency

The Lumos Matrix incorporates a principally steady floor, with 4 vents on the highest of the helmet for airflow, with an built-in brim constructed into the shell. As talked about, there’s a front-facing gentle built-in to the helmet and guarded by a clear plastic overlaying, in addition to a rear panel of seven×11 LED lights, which create a dot matrix-style show that may show photos or animations, together with scrolling textual content. These LEDs are all full RGB, permitting the consumer to take full benefit for their very own, or built-in, show creations.

Lumos additionally makes the Kickstart, which incorporates a extra aerodynamic, completely vented design. The look of the Matrix is extra akin to helmets utilized in skateboarding, and for city commuter bicyclists. Regardless of its extra solid-looking design, in testing I discovered that it was truly very comfy and funky, permitting loads of airflow. The helmet sits a bit excessive on the top, however has ample laborious foam padding and positively appears like a strong piece of protecting gear. General, the intense high quality of the development and stage of the finishes on the Matrix assist it earn its larger price ticket.

Picture Credit: Darrell Etherington

The Matrix can be comfy, and the adjustable sizing straps guarantee a cosy match meaning the helmet received’t be shifting round in any respect whereas worn. The activation button situated on the chin strap close to your ear is simple to seek out and press, with a tactile response mixed with an auditory sign so that you’ll understand it’s on. There’s additionally a built-in magnetic holder for the included two-button handlebar flip sign distant within the rear inside of the helmet itself, which is tremendous helpful when sporting the helmet out on errands.

When it comes to the sensible options, Lumos has created a really wise set of defaults for the on-board lighting that make it simple to only activate the helmet and get using. The built-in patterns provide a variety of choices, however all do the job of accelerating your visibility — and the intense lighting implies that it provides to your capability to be seen by motorists, different cyclists and pedestrians, even when you’re biking in shiny daylight.

The customizability of the rear dot matrix show can be tremendous useful. Even if you happen to’re not all for creating colourful designs to precise your creative self, you should utilize it for way more sensible causes — like displaying a easy scrolling message (i.e. “biking with youngsters”) with a purpose to alert anybody else round to causes to pay heightened consideration.

Picture Credit: Darrell Etherington

The included Lumos handlebar distant is paired out of the field, and is extraordinarily dependable when it comes to activating the flip indicators on the helmet. Lumos’ smartwatch app was way more hit-or-miss for me when it comes to recognizing my arm gestures reliably to automate the signaling, however that’s actually a value-add function anyway, and completely not essential to get the complete advantage of the helmet. The app’s integration with Apple Well being for exercise monitoring whereas biking can be implausible, and actually provides to the general expertise of utilizing the Matrix helmet.

Backside line

The Lumos Matrix is a implausible bike helmet, with a tremendous built-in sensible lighting system that’s each shiny and extremely customizable. There’s a purpose this factor is carried at Apple Shops — it’s high-quality when it comes to building, software program integration and design. That stated, its retail value begins at $249.95 — which is loads when you think about {that a} good-quality MIPS helmet with out sensible options will solely set you again about $60 or so.

When you think about simply how a lot expertise is onboard the Matrix, nevertheless, the pricing turns into loads simpler to swallow. It’s true that devoted lights additionally aren’t costly, however the ones on the Matrix are very prime quality and intensely seen in all lighting circumstances. And the Matrix gives distinctive options you received’t discover wherever else, together with lively flip indicators and automatic brake lights, which actually add to your capability to securely share the highway with different cyclists and autos.

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