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  • Comfort 90% 90%
  • Warmth 90% 90%
  • Ventilation 90% 90%
  • Safety Tech & Features 90% 90%
  • Goggle Compatibility 90% 90%
  • Weight 60% 60%

Weight: 501.8 grams

Adjustment System: BOA FS360 Fit System

Number of Vents: 18

Removable Ear Covers: Yes

Goggle Attachment: Yes

Visor: No 

Audio Compatibility: Yes

Price: $156-$260

What We Like: Most of the Features of the Quantum at a Lower Price

What We Don’t: Lacks the Ultra-Premium Protection of the Quantum

The Smith Vantage MIPS is right on par with the Smith Quantum MIPS as a top pick for the best ski and snowboard helmet on the market. With an MSRP of $260, it is still expensive, and we are not sure that the slight price difference sets it apart enough from the Quantum to make us choose the Vantage over it. However, there are a couple of areas where the Vantage actually outshines the Quantum, making it a potentially better buy for some riders.

Compare to Similar Products

See Our Best Ski & Snowboard Helmet Review 2020 HERE!

Smith Quantum MIPS

  • Comfort 100% 100%
  • Warmth 100% 100%
  • Ventilation 80% 80%
  • Safety Tech & Features 100% 100%
  • Goggle Compatibility 90% 90%
  • Weight 40% 40%

Pros

Class-Leading Safety

Top All-Around Performance

Cons

Heavy

Expensive

Weight: 623.69 grams

Adjustment System: BOA FS360 Fit System

Number of Vents: 22

Removable Ear Covers: Yes

Google Attachment: Yes

Visor: No

Audio Compatibility: Yes

Giro Range MIPS

  • Comfort 90% 90%
  • Warmth 100% 100%
  • Ventilation 80% 80%
  • Safety Tech & Features 90% 90%
  • Goggle Compatibility 90% 90%
  • Weight 60% 60%

Pros

Unparalleled Fit Adjustment

Goggle Compatibility

Cons

Expensive

Can Cause Ear Pain for Some Riders

Weight: 538.65 grams

Adjustment System: ConformFit technology

Number of Vents: 12 adjustable

Removable Ear Covers: Yes

Goggle Attachment: Yes

Visor: Yes

Audio Compatibility: Yes

Giro Nine MIPS

  • Comfort 70% 70%
  • Warmth 80% 80%
  • Ventilation 70% 70%
  • Safety Tech & Features 70% 70%
  • Goggle Compatibility 70% 70%
  • Weight 70% 70%

Pros

Mips Tech

Warm

Light

Comfortable

Great Price to Performance Ratio

Cons

Non-Removable Earpads

Lower Tier In Form Fit System

Weight: 436 grams

Adjustment System: In-Form Fit System

Number of Vents: 14

Removable Ear Covers: No

Google Attachment: Yes

Visor: No

Audio Compatibility: No

Salomon MTN Lab Review

  • Comfort 70% 70%
  • Warmth 50% 50%
  • Ventilation 100% 100%
  • Safety Tech & Features 80% 80%
  • Goggle Compatibility 70% 70%
  • Weight 100% 100%

Pros

A True Ski Mountaineering Helmet

Ultralight

Well Ventilated

Cons

Non-Closable Vents

Not for Everyone

Weight: 360 grams

Adjustment System: Custom dial adjustment system

Number of Vents: 20

Removable Ear Covers: Yes

Goggle Attachment: Yes

Visor: Yes (brim)

Audio Compatibility: No

POC Auric Cut Backcountry Spin

  • Comfort 80% 80%
  • Warmth 90% 90%
  • Ventilation 90% 90%
  • Safety Tech & Features 90% 90%
  • Goggle Compatibility 90% 90%
  • Weight 40% 40%

Pros

Cutting Edge Safety Tech

Warm

Well Ventilated

Cons

Heavy

Look is Not for Everyone

Weight: 585 grams

Adjustment System: 360-degree adjustment

Number of Vents: 10 adjustable

Removable Ear Covers: Yes

Google Attachment: Yes

Visor: No

Audio Compatibility: Yes

Smith Variance

  • Comfort 80% 80%
  • Warmth 80% 80%
  • Ventilation 90% 90%
  • Safety Tech & Features 70% 70%
  • Goggle Compatibility 80% 80%
  • Weight 60% 60%

Pros

Price to Performance Ratio

Warm

Comfortable

Cons

Lacks Safety Features of Top of the Line Smith Helmets

Weight: 538.65 grams

Adjustment System: BOA Fit System

Number of Vents: 18

Removable Ear Covers: Yes

Google Attachment: Yes

Visor: No

Audio Compatibility: Yes

Smith Vantage MIPS

  • Comfort 90% 90%
  • Warmth 90% 90%
  • Ventilation 90% 90%
  • Safety Tech & Features 90% 90%
  • Goggle Compatibility 90% 90%
  • Weight 60% 60%

Pros

Most of the Features of the Quantum at a Lower Price

Cons

Lacks the Ultra-Premium Protection of the Quantum

Weight: 501.8 grams

Adjustment System: BOA FS360 Fit System

Number of Vents: 18

Removable Ear Covers: Yes

Goggle Attachment: Yes

Visor: No 

Audio Compatibility: Yes

Oakley Mod5 MIPS

  • Comfort 80% 80%
  • Warmth 70% 70%
  • Ventilation 80% 80%
  • Safety Tech & Features 70% 70%
  • Goggle Compatibility 90% 90%
  • Weight 40% 40%

Pros

Modular Brim System

BOARetention System

Comfortable

Cons

Cold Earpads

Average Ventilation

Poor Quality of Goggle Clip

Weight: 601 grams

Adjustment System: BOA 270 fit system

Number of Vents: 11 on MIPS helmet

Removable Ear Covers: Yes

Goggle Attachment: Yes

Visor: Yes 

Audio Compatibility: No

Comfort and Fit

Like the ultra-premium Smith Quantum, the Smith Vantage MIPS is among the most comfortable ski and snowboard helmets on the market, and the fit of the two helmets is nearly identical, due to the use of the BOA FS360 Fit System. The BOA system really makes the helmet conform to the shape of your head when you cinch it down, rather than just feeling like a band is pinching tighter on the back of your head, which is the feeling that some retention systems give. Furthermore, it allows for a wide range of adjustability for riders who want to comfortably wear a buff or beanie under their helmets, and It is also very easy to operate one-handed.

As a rule, Smith helmets are quite comfortable in general and fit a fairly broad selection of head shapes, and this is particularly true of the Smith Quantum and Vantage thanks to the BOA system. However, they do favor skiers and riders with a round shaped head, as opposed to the more oval shaped fit of Giro helmets.

Warmth

Also like the Quantum, the Smith Vantage is an exceptionally warm helmet. There is little to no airflow that finds its way between your cheeks and the earpads, and the Vantage MIPS’s 18 vents seal off tight against the wind.

Ventilation

While the Smith Quantum MIPS was our top overall pick for best ski and snowboard helmet, there are a few areas where the slightly cheaper Smith Vantage actually outshines it, and ventilation is one of those. While its 18 vents are four few than the quantum, the half shell Koroyd liner of the Smith Vantage lets air through that the full Koroyd lining of the Quantum does not.  Meanwhile, the Smith Vantage MIPS features the same dual adjustment system and the Quantum, allowing you to independently open and close the front and rear vents to perfectly dial in your climate control.

Safety Tech and Additional Features

While the Smith Vantage matches the more expensive Quantum in nearly every category, this is the one where it comes up short.

Rather than the full Koroyd protective lining of the Smith Quantum, the Vantage uses about 50% less Koroyd. This does achieve better airflow while knocking a few grams off of the helmet, and Smith claims that it is still Koroyd reinforced in the highest potential impact zones. However, we go in for safety, and would prefer the full Koroyd Lining of the Quantum.

The hybrid construction of the Smith Vantage also lacks the exoskeleton reinforcement around the sides and back of the helmet, found on the Smith Quantum. Like the reduced Koroyd, this knocks both grams and dollars off of the Smith Vantage, and it is up to you to decide what you are willing to trade for increased protection.

The Smith Vantage features a standard buckle and chinstrap, rather than the single piece adjustment and magnetic Fidlock buckle found on the Smith Quantum. Finally, like the Quantum, the Vantage’s earpads are compatible with audio inserts such as the Chips 2.0 by Outdoor Tech.

Goggle Compatibility

Long before the folks at Smith were making top of the line helmets, they were busy making top of the line eyewear. Not surprisingly, this leads Smith helmets to be some of the best on the market when it comes to eyewear integration, and the Smith Vantage MIPS is no exception to that rule. In addition to simply fitting goggles well, the Smith Vantage utilizes Smith’s AirEvac2 to funnel moisture away from your goggles, making sure that they stay fog free.

While the Smith Vantage provides excellent integration with most goggles, the best combination of fit and ventilation is achieved when using the Vantage with Smith’s own snow goggles.

Weight

As in the ventilation department, this is another area where the Smith Vantage outshines the Quantum. At 501g, the Smith Vantage is on the lighter end of ski and snowboard helmets with a premium load of features, if not on the lighter end of ski and snowboard helmets altogether.

The Bottom Line

At $260, the Smith Vantage is an expensive helmet by just about any way of reckoning. However, it is a great all-around ski and snowboard helmet that is packed with features. Riders who want to save a few dollars and prioritize ventilation above all might prefer it to our top pick, the Smith Quantum. However, we are willing to take the price, weight, and ventilation tradeoffs in exchange for the supreme protection offered by the Smith Quantum. Riders on a budget meanwhile, might be better served by the Smith Variance, which includes much of the Vantage’s safety, without some of the bells and whistles or the Giro Nine, which was our best value award winner for ski and snowboard helmets.

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