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Kask Protone Review

A pricy Italian semi-aero helmet that falls short on comfort and adjustability.
Kask Protone
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Price:  $300 List | $224.99 at Amazon
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Durable, leather chin strap
Cons:  Expensive, adjustment issues, not comfortable
Manufacturer:   Kask
By Nick Bruckbauer & Curtis Smith  ⋅  Oct 2, 2019
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67
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#12 of 15
  • Comfort - 20% 5
  • Adjustability - 15% 5
  • Weight - 15% 9
  • Style - 15% 8
  • Ventilation - 20% 5
  • Durability - 15% 9

Our Verdict

The Kask Protone is a semi-aero helmet that is comparable in design to the Giro Synthe and is best suited to road racing and training. Kask is an Italian company well known for making high-quality helmets. Team Sky, one of the most successful professional cycling teams in the Pro Peloton, uses Kask helmets. This helmet is designed to provide good ventilation while maintaining an aerodynamic profile. This is undoubtedly a sharp-looking, durable helmet. Unfortunately, it was hampered by comfort and adjustability issues during testing, keeping it out of range of high scoring helmets like the Giro Synthe.


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Kask Protone
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Kask Protone
Awards  Editors' Choice Award   Best Buy Award 
Price $224.99 at Amazon
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Overall Score Sort Icon
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Star Rating
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Pros Durable, leather chin strapLightweight, comfortable, low profile, good ventilationGreat ventilation, elegant style, advanced MIPS liner designWell ventilated, affordable, comfortable, uses CES protectionLightweight, well-ventilated, very affordable
Cons Expensive, adjustment issues, not comfortableExpensiveExpensive, heavier than other high-end helmetsForehead padding requires visor, bulky, doesn’t use MIPSNot as durable or adjustable as high-end models
Bottom Line A pricy Italian semi-aero helmet that falls short on comfort and adjustability.A high-end road biking helmet with a semi aerodynamic profile, that is lightweight and well-ventilated.A high-end road biking helmet with excellent ventilation and a unique MIPS liner design.A playfully designed offering with plenty of features for casual and serious riders alike.A low-cost, lightweight helmet with many of the same features as higher priced competitors.
Rating Categories Kask Protone Giro Synthe MIPS Giro Aether MIPS Catlike Kompact'o Urban Giro Foray MIPS
Comfort (20%)
10
0
5
10
0
9
10
0
7
10
0
8
10
0
7
Adjustability (15%)
10
0
5
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
8
Weight (15%)
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
6
10
0
6
10
0
9
Style (15%)
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
7
10
0
7
Ventilation (20%)
10
0
5
10
0
7
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
8
Durability (15%)
10
0
9
10
0
7
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
6
Specs Kask Protone Giro Synthe MIPS Giro Aether MIPS Catlike Kompact'o... Giro Foray MIPS
Weight (grams) 268 g (size M) 312 g (size L) 330 g (size L) 291 g (size M) 312 g (size L)
MIPS No Yes Yes No Yes
Number of vents 20 19 11 21 21
Sizes S, M, L S, M, L S, M, L S, M, L S, M, L
Size Range (cm) 52-58 cm (size M) 59-63 cm (size L) 59-63 cm (size L) 51-61 cm (size M) 59-63 cm (size L)

Our Analysis and Test Results

Performance Comparison


Out testing with the Kask Protone.
Out testing with the Kask Protone.

Comfort


We expected the Protone to be one of the more comfortable helmets in the test following our past experience with Kask helmets. Regrettably, that was not the case. The main issue we experienced is a fore and aft adjustment system that does not lock in place, allowing the helmet to shift forward and backward on the head. The headband strap system also has a bend near the temples that creates uncomfortable pressure points. Despite these complaints, this model does have very plush Coolmax padding, and a very comfortable leather chinstrap.

The Kask Protone has a leather chin strap.
The Kask Protone has a leather chin strap.

Adjustability


This helmet scores poorly due to a fore and aft adjustment mechanism that does not stay in place. Just touching the helmet while riding can cause it to shift forward or backward. In addition, it does not have an adjustable Y-buckles like the high scoring Giro Synthe or the Lazer Z-1. The lack of adjustable Y-buckles made getting the straps evenly tensioned impossible for some of our testers. The rear straps have fixed anchor points, further limiting adjustability. For a more adjustable helmet, we suggest the Giro Synthe.

The Kask Proton suffered from comfort and adjustability issues during testing.
The Kask Proton suffered from comfort and adjustability issues during testing.

Weight


The Protone has a competitive weight of 268 g in a size Medium. The Giro Synthe has a similar semi-aero design and comes in at the same weight, but it also has a MIPS liner. The non-MIPS version of the Synthe would be most comparable to the Protone, and it is 30 g lighter in weight. When you take the durable construction of the product into account, the weight is actually quite reasonable for a semi-aero helmet.

Style


This is a nice looking helmet, with some aerodynamic benefits. Lots of vents up front give it an almost traditional look, but from the side, the aerodynamic intentions are apparent, with a rounded top section free of vents. The Protone lacks rubber sunglass grippers found on other high-end helmets like the Giro Synthe. We like the leather chin strap, and our testers found it to be very comfortable on the skin. The design is solid, except for the fore and aft adjustment system, which does not stay in place.

The Kask Protone worn with POC Do Blade sunglasses.
The Kask Protone worn with POC Do Blade sunglasses.

Ventilation


Overall, ventilation is adequate but falls short of the Giro Synthe, our Editors' Choice Award Winner. The Synthe has 26 vents, compared to 20 on the Protone. Fewer vents could be what makes the difference between the two helmets, but we feel it is more likely do to with the Roc Loc Air suspension system on the Synthe that maintains a few millimeters of space between the head and the EPS foam liner. Internal channeling is quite extensive on this model, which helps with ventilation at speed. The extra heat build-up is most noticeable at lower speeds when compared to the higher scoring Specialized Airnet and the Synthe.

Lots of vents on the front of the Kask Protone.
Lots of vents on the front of the Kask Protone.

Durability


The Protone is one of the most durable helmets we tested. A full wrap polycarbonate shell protects the EPS foam from damage. Though more of an aesthetic issue, it scores lower than the Smith Overtake due to flimsy stickers that easily scratch and peel, compared to durable painted-on decals. Also, the failure of the fore and aft adjustment system cost this, offering some points in the durability category.

A full wrap polycarbonate shell enhances durability of the Kask Protone.
A full wrap polycarbonate shell enhances durability of the Kask Protone.

Value


Due to the poor design of the fore and aft adjustment system, we do not feel it is a good value.

Conclusion


The Kask Protone is a nice looking semi-aero helmet. It suffers from poor adjustability and lack of comfort. If you are looking for a semi-aero helmet, we suggest you consider the Giro Synthe.

Front view of the Kask Protone.
Front view of the Kask Protone.


Nick Bruckbauer & Curtis Smith