With the Align, Specialized undeniably serve up a lot of helmet for your money. At 339g, the Align’s weight is about par, but its coverage is slightly lower than some of its competitors.
The shell isn’t fully in-moulded, meaning that a fair amount of EPS foam is left exposed to potential damage. In-moulding adds cost, so it’s understandable that it’s lacking on a bargain-basement lid.
Specializedhelmets often do well when it comes to ventilation, and the Align is no different. Specialized has managed to trickle down its mouth-port vent, which sits over the forehead, while the rest of the 22 vents help suck air in. The vents are bigger on pricier lids, but the Align still manages to do a good job.
The Align has a peak that’s non-adjustable, but long enough to be effective. It can be easily removed, making the helmet look a little smarter on the road, should you care. The straps use Specialized’s Tri-Fix web splitter to keep the reflective straps in a comfortable position.
This article was originally published in What Mountain Bike magazine.