Reviews You Can Rely On

Fox Racing Proframe RS Review

A killer enduro race helmet that blends a substantial and protective feel with excellent airflow and comfort
fox racing proframe rs downhill helmet review
This helmet has a comfortable and consistent fit. We would have no problem wearing it on a full-day enduro.
Credit: Pat Donahue
Price:  $360 List
Manufacturer:   Fox Racing
By Pat Donahue ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Nov 8, 2022
89
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#2 of 18
  • Comfort - 25% 9.0
  • Protection - 20% 8.0
  • Weight - 20% 9.0
  • Ventilation - 15% 10.0
  • Visor - 10% 9.0
  • Durability - 10% 8.0

Our Verdict

The Fox Proframe RS is a light and breathable full-face helmet ready for the enduro race course. This DH-certified lid offers excellent ventilation for pedal-y sections of the trail while retaining a very comfortable and secure fit. It is a little heavier than some of the lightest options in this test class, but it also feels a bit more robust and ready to rumble compared to the featherweights. We found a lot to like about this helmet. Given its more enduro-oriented design, it wouldn't be our first choice for frequent bike park use or DH racing, but it is a great option for slightly less aggressive ventures. It is fairly expensive, but we were quite impressed by this helmet's quality, design, and performance.
REASONS TO BUY
Comfortable
Breathable
Secure fit
Substantial protection for enduro-style lid
REASONS TO AVOID
Slightly heavier than other enduro lids
Not the best option for the bike park

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Overall Score Sort Icon
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Pros Comfortable, breathable, secure fit, substantial protection for enduro-style lidBreathable, more robust than other enduro-focused options, lightweightVery comfortable, protective, surprisingly versatileProtective, reasonably priced, comfortableImpressive price tag, comfortable, available in seven sizes
Cons Slightly heavier than other enduro lids, not the best option for the bike parkNot suited for frequent bike park duties, a little expensiveMediocre airflow, not well suited for substantial amounts of pedalingAverage ventilation, heavier weight, no rotational impact protection systemWarm, poor ventilation, fit is a little loose
Bottom Line A killer enduro race helmet that blends a substantial and protective feel with excellent airflow and comfortA dialed enduro-oriented helmet that delivers excellent breathability and solid protectionA comfortable and versatile downhill helmet with excellent protection levelsA full-face helmet that boasts a strong value and high levels of protectionA respectable full-face helmet at a stunning price tag
Rating Categories Fox Racing Proframe RS Smith Mainline MIPS Giro Insurgent Sphe... Troy Lee Designs D3... 7Protection M1
Comfort (25%)
9.0
10.0
10.0
8.0
9.0
Protection (20%)
8.0
8.0
9.0
8.0
7.0
Weight (20%)
9.0
9.0
7.0
5.0
7.0
Ventilation (15%)
10.0
9.0
7.0
7.0
5.0
Visor (10%)
9.0
8.0
9.0
8.0
7.0
Durability (10%)
8.0
8.0
9.0
8.0
7.0
Specs Fox Racing Proframe RS Smith Mainline MIPS Giro Insurgent Sphe... Troy Lee Designs D3... 7Protection M1
Weight (grams, size medium) 836 grams 765 grams 1042 grams 1219 grams 947 grams
Weight (ounces, size medium) 29.5 oz 27.0 oz 36.7 oz 43.0 oz 33.4 oz
Number of Vents 22 21 20 20 17
Shell Material Polycarbonate Aerocore Pre-preg Fiberglass Fiberglass Polycarbonate
Rotational Impact Protection System MIPS Integra MIPS MIPS Spherical None None
Sizes S, M, L S, M, L XS/S, M/L, XL/XXL XS, S, M, L, XL, XXL Youth M, Youth L, S, S, M, L, XL
CPSC Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
CE EN1077 No No No Yes No
CE EN1078 Yes No Yes Yes No
ASTM F1952 (DH) Yes Yes Yes Yes No
ASTM F2032 Yes No Yes Yes No
ASTM F2040 No No No No No

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Proframe RS is our top recommendation for the enduro crowd. The blend of nice protection levels paired with excellent airflow makes this lid a great choice for those multi-stage races that require some sprinting, punchy climbs, and pedal transfers. This helmet ticks most of the boxes and posted impressive scores in most performance metrics. The only real knock on this slick-looking model is its high price tag.

Performance Comparison


fox racing proframe rs downhill helmet review - the proframe rs offers a nice blend of padding that resembles a...
The Proframe RS offers a nice blend of padding that resembles a downhill helmet with a cradle system reminiscent of a half-shell.
Credit: Pat Donahue

Comfort


The Proframe RS is comfortable. Our medium test helmet fit true-to-size with no pressure points or areas of looseness.

The upper portion of the inner helmet resembles a half-shell model. It is lightly padded with strips of antimicrobial padding attached to a MIPS liner (more on that later). There is a BOA dial on the rear of the helmet that controls an adjustable cradle to fine-tune the fit. Tighten the BOA dial and the cradle tightens around the rear of your head, along the side, and over the brow. The dial is relatively small but can be easily operated with gloves on.


This helmet also has the option to adjust the entire cradle position. There are four ways to orient the cradle in case you want it to sit higher or lower on your melon. While this is a reasonably quick adjustment to make, you'll likely want to set the cradle position once and let it ride.

There are sizeable cheek pads on the chin bar that squeeze the cheeks with the perfect amount of force. They were snug and kept the helmet in place without being uncomfortable. There was no slop in the fit and the helmet didn't feel like it was moving around independently of our heads.

The helmet is secured with a magnetic Fidlock closure system on the chin strap. This style of buckle has become more and more common on both half-shell and full-face helmets in recent years. Among full-face helmets, Fidlock is far easier to use than a D-strap buckle. Simply guide the two pieces close to one another and you can feel the magnets pull the clip into place.

fox racing proframe rs downhill helmet review - send step-downs with confidence in this dh-certified helmet.
Send step-downs with confidence in this DH-certified helmet.
Credit: Pat Donahue

Protection


The Proframe RS carries a number of certifications. Most importantly it is ASTM F1952 DH certified. It is a relatively recent phenomenon to see these enduro-oriented helmets start to carry DH certifications. It also has ATSM F2032, EN 1078:2012 + A1:2012, AS/NZ 2063-2020, and CPSC 1203 certifications.


The Proframe RS has excellent coverage. Some of the lighter lids in this review can feel like they are skimping on certain areas like the lower portions of the rear of the head and the underside of the jaw. The Proframe RS covers these areas quite well. No matter if you rotate the helmet forward or backward, no key areas are left exposed.

The Proframe RS lid uses EPS and EPP foam. These foams are applied in two layers with a MIPS Integra Split slip plane in between. MIPS is a system that allows the helmet to rotate slightly in the event of an angled impact. This is designed to reduce the rotational forces that reach the brain and reduce the chance of a brain injury. In most applications, MIPS layers are located under the padding strips and is quite visible. With MIPS Integra Split, the slip plane is located between the EPP and EPS foam layers.

This helmet feels plenty protective for enduro racing, pedal-y shuttles, and is quite versatile. If your idea of fun is banging out dozens of bike park laps or sending the biggest gaps, there are beefier and more substantial DH-focused helmets you might consider. If you need excellent airflow and don't plan on simply riding the lifts all season, we feel the Proframe RS has plenty of protection.

Weight


Our medium helmet hit the scales at 29.5 ounces or 836 grams. That number puts it in line with most of the enduro-oriented or convertible helmets in this test class. A few of the convertible models are significantly lighter.


The fact that this helmet is a bit heavier than some of the lightest options helps this helmet feel a bit more protective. Yes, a light helmet is nice, but a couple hundred extra grams can make the helmet feel more confidence-inducing when things get gnarly and speeds increase. This helmet is plenty light to feel airy and breathable but has enough heft and bulk to feel like it could withstand a gnarly crash.

fox racing proframe rs downhill helmet review - ventilation levels are excellent. whether huffing and puffing up a...
Ventilation levels are excellent. Whether huffing and puffing up a punchy climb in an enduro race or casually grinding uphill, this helmet breathes very well.
Credit: Pat Donahue

Ventilation


Ventilation is the name of the game with the Proframe RS. The level of breathability is truly outstanding. This lid has a total of 22 vents. Despite its slight weight penalty compared to other enduro-oriented helmets, the Proframe RS is among the best in terms of ventilation.


The big story is the open vents on the chin bar. The vents are wide open and don't have any mesh or plastic covering. This allows enormous amounts of airflow when you are hammering on the pedals. There is an open diamond-shaped vent directly in front of the mouth. To the left and right there are large rectangular open vents. In addition, there are two smaller slits above the main vent on the front of the helmet.

Above the brow, there are a series of sizeable intake ports that allows air to enter the helmet. The rear of this lid has a number of exit ports for heat, moisture, and air to escape.

fox racing proframe rs downhill helmet review - the adjustable visor is just about perfect.
The adjustable visor is just about perfect.
Credit: Pat Donahue

Visor


The Proframe RS has an excellent three-position visor. The visor is reasonably broad and is approximately six inches wide at its furthest point. It is somewhat flexible when manipulated by hand. This can be useful as the visor can flex and resist cracking if dropped or crashed on.


The three available visor positions are sensible. We love an adjustable visor and three positions seem to provide all of the adjustment you could ask for. We generally preferred the visor in one of the two highest positions for the best range of vision but appreciated being able to drop it into the lowest position to keep the sun out of our eyes at certain times of day. The adjustable visor allows you to tuck your goggles above your brow if you choose, though we found this can lead to your lenses fogging as the humidity from your head feeds directly into the goggles.

fox racing proframe rs downhill helmet review - huge vent ports allow air to come in and heat/moisture to exit.
Huge vent ports allow air to come in and heat/moisture to exit.
Credit: Pat Donahue

Durability


Throughout testing, we observed no signs of premature breakdown of materials or padding.


One area we are a little concerned about is the BOA-actuated cradle tightening system. There is a small cable that pulls and tightens the cradle as you turn the BOA dial. While we did not have any issues with it, it seems like it could be problematic if used carelessly.

Extras


The Proframe RS comes with an additional, thicker, set of cheek pads if you need to snug up the fit. It also comes with a very simple helmet-carrying bag.

We didn't use the thicker set of cheek pads as this lid fit excellent right out of the box.

fox racing proframe rs downhill helmet review - the proframe rs is well-ventilated and pretty light but also feels...
The Proframe RS is well-ventilated and pretty light but also feels substantial and protective.
Credit: Pat Donahue

Value


This helmet is definitely on the expensive side of things, no two ways about that. That being said, we think Fox has done a wonderful job crafting a confidence-inducing, DH-certified helmet that is also extremely breathable at a respectable weight. It is a high-end enduro helmet that performs exceptionally well within its intended application.

Conclusion


The Fox Proframe RS earned a Top Pick for Enduro Racing. The fit is dialed, it is extremely comfortable, and the ventilation/airflow is top-notch. If you need a reasonably protective helmet that is comfortable sprinting up punchy climbs and allowing nice airflow on long enduro stages, this is the helmet for you. Sure, it is a bit expensive, but we feel the quality of design and construction is apparent.

fox racing proframe rs downhill helmet review - whether you are racing the clock or just looking for some extra...
Whether you are racing the clock or just looking for some extra protection on aggressive trail rides, the Proframe RS is a great choice.
Credit: Pat Donahue

Pat Donahue
 
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