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POC Octal AVIP MIPS Helmet

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59 Reviews


Light, airy, and safe.

The POC Octal AVIP MIPS Helmet is more than just a bundle of Swedish design and multilingual acronyms—it’s designed to keep you protected and comfortable so you have one less thing to think about while you’re riding your bike. The secret to the Octal’s airiness is pretty obvious; just take a quick look at the size of those vents. Rather than peppering the shell with a bunch of little vents, the engineers at POC realized they could create a helmet that was just as protective with less material, and the Octal was born.

MIPS, put simply, is a system that allows the shell of the helmet to move independently from the protective liner, which can help reduce the severity of an angled impact (like most impacts you’d expect to have on a bicycle). It functions in the same way as the brain/cranium does in the human body, with a protective, mobile layer between the two.

  • A cycling helmet that checks off our headwear wish list
  • Shell distributes impact through itself, not into your head
  • Aerodynamic shaping makes wearing a helmet less of a drag
  • Adjustable cradle keeps fit secure and protection in place
  • Highly visible white EPS foam catches road users' attention
  • Padding wicks moisture and fights funky odors
  • Eyewear perch lets you anchor your shades
  • Prominently displays emergency contact information in case of disaster
  • Item #POC003R

Tech Specs

Shell Material
Impact Foam
14 large vents
Fit Adjustment
size adjustment system
EN 1078, CPSC 1203
Claimed Weight
[S] 210g, [M] 215g, [L] 225g
Recommended Use
Manufacturer Warranty
1 year

Tech Specs

  • Reviews
  • Q & A

What do you think about this product?

Have questions about this product?

Great Helmet bad for Oakley's

  • Familiarity: I returned this product before using it
  • Fit: True to size

This helmet is awesome. It feels really good, very light and comfortable. The looks are a little hard to adjust but I can get pass it because it offers great protection. The reason why I am returning it is because I only have Oakley sunglasses and the legs are too long for this helmet. The legs of the glasses go underneath the back of the helmet so when I tighten the helmet it adds a lot of pressure on my head because its pinching the legs of the sunglasses. I hope this makes sense other than that its an awesome helmet

Life Saver

  • Fit: True to size

Had my helmet about 2 mos. Had a pickup truck / bike encounter. Bike lost, hit the ground, hit my head wearing POC. Helmet was destroyed...multiple breaks in foam on side that contacted pavement and back bar relieving stress. No head injuries! Not even a headache. As for soft tissue...ugly. Thanks POC!

Best helmet ever!!!

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
  • Fit: True to size
  • Size Bought: Medium
  • Height: 6'3"
  • Weight: 230lbs

This helmet is true to size, fits like a glove is lightweight and honestly there is nothing bad I can say about it. The tension system that adjusts to your head is very comfortable and works extremely well.

Great product

  • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
  • Fit: Runs large
  • Height: 6'2"
  • Weight: 200lbs

After a crash I was looking for some extra back of the head protection. Was using a specialized Prevail. It did its job well. However felt I needed more protection lower in the back based on my wreck. Pretty sure I suffered a minor concussion in the front of head (brain bounce reverb). Its possible that the MIPS might help cushion the blow a bit in the future. Hopefully, I will never find out. This one runs a little lower on the back of the head. The real reason I am here writing this is to actually mention how it is true that this helmet really just disappears. Forgot I had it on after a few miles. Very comfortable. I will tell you that it does have great ventilation, but the vents tend to be a bit deeper - harder to scratch your head through the vents than the prevail. All in all, happy with the purchase. fyi - Runs a tad large - 59cm - use the medium.

poc serves a specific purpose,,,,

  • Fit: True to size
  • Size Bought: grande
  • Height: 5'5"
  • Weight: 170lbs

i got the orange mips for fall and winter. riding on the city roads, i'm a bit more cautious. orange for visibility and mips for protection. not crazy about the look, but you get used to it.

Great Helmet, Plenty of Ventilation

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
  • Fit: True to size
  • Size Bought: Medium
  • Height: 5'10"
  • Weight: 157lbs

I've had a lot of helmets over the years, and this one offers excellent comfort and the vents are the most effective I've used. Here in South Florida, the summers brutalize cyclists and you need as much cooling power as possible. I haven't used it in cooler weather, so you may wish for less ventilation if you live in cooler climes and have only one helmet.

Super comfortable

  • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
  • Fit: True to size
  • Size Bought: Medium
  • Height: 6'
  • Weight: 180lbs

I've been exclusively riding in Giro road helmets for the past 10+ years, but the Octal seems superior in just about every respect to my Aeon and the various helmets I've had before that. Super light, fits perfectly (obviously subjective), holds my glasses securely (Oakley Racing Jackets) and seems a bit safer with the extra coverage and MIPS. Hands down the best helmet I've owned.

Noggin Protection

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
  • Fit: True to size

Very well ventilated, smart design features like the grippy tabs for holding sunglasses in place. The helmet feels well built. Fit, I would compare with a Specialized or Smith helmet, not quite the same as a Giro for head shape. This isn't the lowest profile helmet out there, it has the appearance of being a little larger than some of the competition, but I feel like it is more protective and the extra external volume ensures that the helmet will be hitting the ground before the rest of my head.

Great helmet !

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
  • Fit: Runs large

I love the look of this helmet. The standard swept back and sit high on the head look of most helmets does not appeal to me or gives me any comfort that my head is fully protected. This helmet looks awesome and feels substantial on my head. It's very light and you'll forget you're wearing it. My previous helmet (LG Titan Carbon) was very well vented. The Octal feels even better! I always wind up with that funny looking wind blown hair that takes the shape of the vents. I ordered a large and it felt a little big. However, I did not exchange it for another size. It has plenty of adjustment to take up the slack and still feels great. I'll probably order the Octal Aero for the winter and try the medium and shoot for a more snug fit with that one. It may fit me at the upper range of medium.

I highly recommend this helmet. I got a good deal at CC but no matter what I paid for this helmet it feels much safer and comfortable than anything I've ever owned.

The eyeglass garage is awesome! Holds glasses very well. I don't sweat them dropping out. However, the POC glasses definitely work better than the ones I had (Tifosi and Bolle). Not mention that if you want your straps underneath your glasses the POC glasses accommodate the straps that stick out. I have POC half Blades and they are best suited for the helmet straps and garage.


  • Familiarity: I've used it several times
  • Fit: True to size
  • Height: 5'8"
  • Weight: 155lbs

I needed to find a new helmet that would meet a lot of criteria after a crash. I wanted increased protection and this helmet meets all needs and more. Comfortable, great coverage, lightweight and great ventilation. I'm glad I made this purchase.

Such a great helmet!

  • Familiarity: I've used it several times

I can't say enough great things about the POC Octal AVIP MIPS. Super light, very well ventilated, great fit to standard sizing (medium) and a very nice change to the traditional road helmet lines. I haven't had a chance to "try" out the MIPS, but in theory the technology makes sense. That's good enough for me. The white/white color option looks great, especially with the subtle yellow MIPS logo and liner. Great job POC for a awesome helmet, and as always great customer service by Jacob Stenberg, my Customer Account Manager with Backcountry!

Kinda Ugly...but in a good way

  • Fit: True to size
  • Size Bought: large
  • Height: 5'7"
  • Weight: 140lbs

I bought this helmet because I was looking for something that breathed better in the south Texas heat. Super comfortable, I never find myself feeling like I need to adjust it during the ride, it breathes really well and the orange is very visible from a long ways off. I'm a big fan of anything that makes me more visible on the road.

Great helmet and awesome service!

  • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
  • Fit: True to size

The helmet is great of course but I wanted to comment on the amazing and fast service from Competitive Cyclist! My order arrived in record time and in perfect condition. Great service!

Very light with great ventilation

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
  • Fit: True to size
  • Size Bought: Medium
  • Height: 6'3"
  • Weight: 154lbs

What makes this helmet awesome is that you don't feel it while you're riding. It's light, and the huge vents are a great asset on hot days. It really makes a difference compared to my previous helmet.
Luckily, I haven't had any crashes, but the MIPS technology gives me peace of mind.
The only complaint I have is that my Smith Pivlock sunglasses don't stay in the vents very securely. Maybe it's just that model and other fit great.

Swedish, Light and comfy

  • Familiarity: I gave it as a gift but have feedback to share

I bought this as a gift to a friend. He wanted this helmet so bad because it's sweden made and because it looks rad (his words). He says he has a weird shaped head and this is the only helmet he could feel comfortable with. Although it looks bigger than your regular road bike helmet, he says that it feels very light and offers great grip for the sun glasses. He went for the Orange Large one.

My favorite helmet

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
  • Fit: True to size

I've used quite a few helmets over the years....and notably the Giro Atmos II for the past 10 years or so. I've had two crashes with the Atmos - first one I hit pavement at around 23 mph and got a concussion. Second one was getting hit by a car nearly head-on, and no concussion (although my side/shoulder seemed to take the brunt of the hit into the windshield). I always hated the buckle/retention system of the Atmos II, but it was lightweight, vented well and looked cool.

A little over a month ago, I decided my current Atmos II needed a replacement as the shell was starting to separate from the foam core, so I ordered the POC - I had been eyeing the POC, but at full retail, it was a bit it on sale, and that was much more manageable. My first impression was that the helmet was pretty big - however, I was surprised at how light it was. It took me no time to dial in the fit to my head, and the straps/retention system is infinitely better than the Giro.

I've been using the helmet for a little over a month and around 800 miles, and I often say to myself

This helmet saved my head, face, neck

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
  • Fit: True to size

This helmet is crazy expensive, but I resolved to splurge on head safety after a 12mph crash head first (after my front wheel dropped from the front fork) into pavement wearing an older Giro Ionos hurt my head too much.

Good thing I did that. just a few weeks later I crashed onto pavement and gravel when cut off by a car at over 21mph. I got back up from that crash with destroyed helmet, shoes, jersey, gloves but no concussion and no neck or shoulder stiffness. The POC scooped up the gravel and kept it from punching into my forehead and temple as it would have done on a traditional helmet. The MIPS and extra low brow did their job and prevented more serious injury. One trip to the emergency with even modest injuries runs well over the cost of this helmet. Consider it good insurance. An analysis of crashes determined that major brain trauma was 50-50 odds at speeds 19mph+ even with a helmet--so wear one, hopefully this one!

It isn't an aero helmet. It's oversized and aesthetics are an acquired taste. But it does cool your head even at slower speeds. I have mounted the ICE dot crash sensor on the back; which is a feature POC designed into this helmet and available for about $120. It recorded my crash forces, sent a text and a map pin to my wife who was headed out to pick me up while I was still brushing myself off.

Excellent investment. I highly recommend this helmet over all others. I've never had a crash at such a high speed and incurred so little trauma. I credit the MIPS system with reducing torque on my neck. We never want to crash, but it happens to the best of us given enough time. When it does, you want the POC Octal MIPS on your head.

PS: POC has a crash replacement program for helmets damaged in crashes within the first year. 50% off list. It's worth contacting them.

This helmet saved my head, face, neck

Octal gave its live to save mine.

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
  • Fit: True to size

Bicycle safety has always been super important to me, so makes sense that I used the day-glow Orange POC Octal before it was available in US. I researched it closely and understood why it wasn't available here yet... so I bought the EU version.

As an avid cyclommuter, I looked forward to riding the 23+ miles to work on average three times a week. In my 8 years at this job I’ve racked up over thirty thousand commuting miles... Check my Strava account. but you'll have to check earlier than 3/30/16, because that's when a drunk driver doing at least 45 mph slammed into me... thank g-d for my POC Octal!

My Strava entry on that date goes into details of my injuries... The helmet is in pieces but my head isn't, not to say I didn't receive any head injury. Would have been hard not to... the drunk first threw me into her windshield (the metal around the windshield was bent-in from the impact), then over her roof and onto the pavement at a fairly high rate of speed as displayed by the road rash over most my body.

I awoke late the following day in the hospital with my family around me. Thanks to my POC, there was an 8" cut to my scalp but nothing more severe.

Now eight months later, I'm staring at my new POC Octal MIPS helmet (orange of course) bought from CC during the TdF Countdown Sale as motivation. Why another Octal? You already know the most important reason... But not the only reason I like it: In Florida it gets HOT in the summer, the helmet you choose can make or "brake" your ride. Brake, as in keep you from pushing hard cause ’it makes you too damn hot!

I’ve had the S-Works/Specialized Prevail, so for comparison:
If a Specialized fits your head then the Octal should as well. The straps aren’t quite as adjustable but never had a problem getting a secure, comfortable fit around the ears.

To beat the heat it must have large vents, the Octal does and they're shaped properly to catch the wind... but still I'd give it 2nd place, it's slightly less cool than the Prevail but you’ll still feel the wind in your hair and it’s comfortable and cool enough NOT to make feel like you have to take it off at rest stops.

This helmet uses a single knob in back to control the sizing as well as two adjustable ribs on the plastic frame. The knob concerned me because I've had other helmets using this system which broke... but with over twenty thousand miles of unapologetic heavy sweaty use, I never had a problem with the Octal .

The Octal also provides better (more) coverage around the sides and back... makes sense to me since we more frequently hit the sides, not the top of our helmets on a fall. I also imagine this feature mitigating cuts in a crash with lots of sharp debris, glass, etc. I’ve also found some large glasses don’t fit properly with a lower helmet so beware.

Never... but MIPS should be one step closer.
What’s my biggest complaint with the Octal? If you've read the reviews, I can confirm that the ecologically friendly dye they use fades quickly in the Florida sun. However, if you don't compare it to a new one, or look under the bottom ;-), it can be hard to tell.

What else do I recommend for safety?
1) Bright jerseys and lots of reflective elements if you ride at night.
2) Newer high lumen lights, use 24/7... no excuses!
(I especially like handlebar-end tail lights, bikes look bigger... hint hint CC)
3) A backpack or other back protection. I used a Shimano T30, with foam layers for the laptop section and the change of clothes I carried, it saved my spine. How do I know? Below the backpack, my non-protected pelvis and sacrum were shattered and broken in multiple pieces.
Need another reason to wear a backpack? Motorists respect you more! My experience is that drivers pass with greater clearance and safety when they think you’re coming/going to work and not just another recreation cyclist getting in their way!


Octal gave its live to save mine.
Unanswered Question

Are all first responders able to access the information from the ICEdot?Or does the ICEdot require special equipment to access data? Meaning some emergency responders such as in small towns may not be able to use the data.

I have read that the Octal MIPS version has less ventilation than the non-MIPS version. Is that correct, and how noticeable is it?

I suppose that it is possible given the extra material, but I haven't noticed it. I've ridden with the non MIPS version for almost a year before upgrading. I couldn't tell any difference. Both definitely give a lot of ventilation. With my prior helmets I had to wear a halo sweatband the keep the sweat in check on hot 90+ days. No need with either of these helmets. Plenty of ventilation. I hope this helps.

Unanswered Question

I just received a MIPS Octal in White in Size Medium and inside the helmet the sticker says 250 Grams for the weight. Also weird is it has two conflicting dates of manufacture one saying 2014/12 and the other 2014/4. Any insight to these inconsistencies?

Are the claimed weights listed for the European helmet or those sold in the U.S.? I know there is a difference for the original Octal. Thanks

What is MIPS and what's the difference between this helmet and the regular Octal? Do they look different?

Hey Tony Lee,

MIPS or Multi-directional Impact Protection System is a technology designed to reduce rotational forces that can occur during a crash. The inner part of the helmet can move separately from the shell of the helmet reducing rotational forces that could affect the brain during a crash.

The helmet looks very similar to the non MIPS model. However this model is using white foam instead of black foam. Other than minor coloring differences the helmets will look very similar.

Does this helmet comes with ICE tag?

They do not come with an ICEDot crash sensor, they do come with an ICE sticker that allows you to load contact information onto the ICE website and if you crash, first responders can access your information by scanning a QR Code on the sticker.