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The CHPT3 x Thousand Barrivell MIPS Helmet is an interesting urban lid that offers a lot of practical and useful features. It's stylish too – though it'll cost you.
We are increasingly seeing the 'x' in the cycling industry as cycling brands collaborate, such as with the MAAP x 100% Glendale sunglasses and now here, with clothing brand CHPT3 and helmet-maker Thousand.
The Barrivell is essentially a limited edition of Thousand's Chapter MIPS Helmet, and gets CHPT3 branding – on Thousand's website it is simply listed as a colour of the Chapter.
In terms of basic design, this is very much a relaxed, urban commuting helmet, with a focus on practicality over weight or masses of ventilation. In addition it is clearly designed to be eye-catching, with bold shapes cutting across the top and the bottom edge in CHPT3s's signature fire red. If you're after a lightweight lid for climbing, you should probably consider something else.
Ventilation may not have been a key design element, but there is definitely a good airflow from the eight vents compared with most 'urban' helmets I have used. I wouldn't want to be wearing this for anything more than a gentle pedal in high temperatures, but for short trips around town or commuting, the airflow is more than adequate.
The MIPS system is discreet both in looks and feel, although a few more padding options wouldn't go amiss – I would have liked slightly bigger pads towards the front, purely because of the shape of my head.
You get a standard dial fit system, and it distributes pressure throughout the cradle well. The straps are thick and robust, but soft enough to stay comfortable whatever, and they dry relatively quickly too.
The magnetic clip beneath the chin is easy to operate with one hand.
Thousand includes some innovative ideas, such as the 'Poplock' for securing your helmet with your bike lock. This is basically a hole in the side with a magnetic cover (a cord stops it being lost), and it's a nice, practical touch... although I am yet to hear of anybody who has locked their helmet to a bike through the straps and had it nicked.
You also get a clever little magnetic rear light. This is a very cool extra because it works so easily – you don't even need to turn it on. Just stick it on and it illuminates automatically.
This attachment is also super easy, because the magnets are powerful enough that you don't even need to aim that precisely.
The light has two settings: a one-hour solid mode and a two-hour flash. Not great, but fitting for its intentions.
At £139, it's the same price as the regular Thousand Chapter – at least in the UK. Buy this helmet direct from Thousand in the US and it carries a $14 premium. Which is a bit confusing.
It's more expensive than the Bern Hudson, which Matt tested in March; that comes in at £109.99 and has a rear light too, though the Barrivell is arguably better looking, better ventilated, and has a more innovative approach. Cheaper still is the Dashel Urban Cycle Helmet at £79, which serves broadly the same market, though again in a more basic way.
Overall, the Barrivell is a good looking, innovative and practical urban helmet. The MIPS integration is seamless, the light is very simple to use, and the Poplock is a tidy addition too. That said, it would be useful to have a few more pad placement options – and while the price might be justifiable, it's definitely high.
Good looking, cleverly designed and comfortable helmet for urban rides and commuting
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road.cc test report
Make and model: CHPT3 x Thousand Barrivell MIPS Helmet
Size tested: Medium
Tell us what the product is for and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
CHPT3 says: "You don't have to sacrifice style for safety or performance. The CHPT3 x Thousand Chapter helmet is built to give you the best of both worlds and designed to help you play within your city."
This is an urban/commuter helmet designed to be comfortable and stylish. I don't know if I would ever describe this as a 'performance' helmet...
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
30 lumen magnetic taillight with 1hr runtime solid, 2hrs flash
Multi-use light adaptor
Secret Poplock function
Integrated dial fit system
Magnetic fastener and nylon straps
8 vents and internal channelling
CPSC and CE EN 1078 safety certified
Lightweight at 360g S, 370g M, 410g L
Seems well made, with no visible foam and a well-integrated MIPS system.
Cool enough and comfortable for commuting.
Fine for what it is.
It is more expensive than its competitors, but at the same time it offers a lot of tech and design innovations.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Really good for casual rides around the city, commutes, or lazy family rides. Ventilation is better than most urban helmets, MIPs is well integrated, and it looks good too.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The light – it works really well and the switch is clever.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Nothing major, but it would be nice to have some more padding adjustability at the front of the helmet.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
There are a couple of helmets we've reviewed recently that we can compare it to. The Bern Hudson that Matt looked at in March comes in at £109.99 and even has a backlight too. However, I would argue that the Barrivell is better looking, better ventilated, and has a more innovative approach to several elements that justifiy the additional £30. We also tested the Dashel Urban Cycle Helmet which comes in at £79 and serves broadly the same market; it may be half the price but I would argue it doesn't have half the tech or innovative designs of the Barrivell.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
It's very good: an innovative and well-specced helmet that does everything you need of an urban lid, though it would be nice to have a little more adjustability with the pads, and it's a bit pricey.
About the tester
I usually ride: CAAD13 My best bike is: Cannondale Supersix Evo
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed,
George is the host of the road.cc podcast and has been writing for road.cc since 2014. He has reviewed everything from a saddle with a shark fin through to a set of glasses with a HUD and everything in between.
Although, ironically, spending more time writing and talking about cycling than on the bike nowadays, he still manages to do a couple of decent rides every week on his ever changing number of bikes.