Esab Sentinel a50 vs Speedglas : Whose the Winning Welding Helmet?

Playing with metal requires a lot of heat. Molding, breaking, shaping, and structuring those stubborn sheets isn’t a simple job from what it appears to be. Not only expertise but safety gadgets are also unavoidable to finish a welding job.

Although there are essential gears to ease the task, a welding helmet is the first thing you need to start your project. And we know there are some A-1 quality helmets out there, but we also understand how confusing the buying process is.

Esab Sentinel a50 vs Speedglas
source: weldingproductivity.com

So to help you sort out what welding helmet you should choose, we are taking you on a tour to unearth the best product. Therefore, get ready to see some great competition between ESAB Sentinel A50 vs Speedglass 9100XXi welding helmets. Don’t forget to check out our in-depth Speedglas 9100xxi helmet Review

Comparison Between ESAB Sentinel A50 vs Speedglas

Design

ESAB Sentinel A50 comes in a traditional and rebellious shell design that is manufactured with high impact strength nylon. The Halo headgear’s presence in ESAB A50’s structure offers excellent balance. Whereas, the central pivot points and discrete design permits enhanced head clearance whenever the helmet is in an uphill position.

Speedglas 9100XXi is structured from the shield design perspective. This means you can keep the shield as near as possible to your head. The pivot point functions similarly like ESAB A50 and it stays closest to your head in the upward direction.

However, 9100XXi has a short lever length to eliminate excessive pressure on the neck muscles. Moreover, the helmet has exhaust vents to make sure the exhaled air is completely out to eradicate fog.

Comfort

Welding with a puzzled head? Unbearable. That’s why it is important to look for a comfortable helmet to assure easy work.

So, to provide comfort, Sentinel A50 is manufactured from a bottom-up approach with a high focus on ergonomics. It includes a five-point-contact adjustable headgear that helps shift the helmet’s weight around the head. 

This feature keeps your skull light and increases your comfort level even if you wear it for several hours.

3m Speedglass 9100XXi
source: paintandpanel.com.au

On the other hand, Speedglas 9100XXi also uses ergonomics, but it has focused more on the neck and head protection. For instance, the neck protection is designed using a flame-resistant material that protects you from flames, sparks, and molten materials.

Tecaweld (a combination of 25% Kevlar and 75% cotton) flame-resistant cloth is used for head protection. And despite being covered in so many layers, 9100XXi stays cool when used for prolonged durations.

Appearance

Aesthetics can help you adore your welding gears. And it seems like Sentinel ESAB A50 knows their target audience well. That’s why the helmet has a remarkable appearance, and it does grab our attention.

The A50 helmet looks seem to be inspired by a sci-fi videogame. Its Robocop look can steal the heart of millions. It’s a matte black helmet with a gradient shade (a blend of black and golden) on the shield. And it’s simply outstanding.

PS – You might secretly fall in love with the Sentinel A50.

Contrarily, we found Speeglass 9100XXi comparatively ordinary. It has a natural color combination (black and grey) that is pretty normal to the eyes. So don’t expect the ‘All Eyes on Me’ feel, as the helmet has a standard appearance. But it could be a good pick if you prefer simplicity over fanciness.

Weight

Some people are careless when it comes to the helmet. As long as the features are cool, they don’t care about the load. But most welders prefer lightweight helmet so they can work without feeling the added pressure on their heads.

So, we found ESAB Sentinel A50 heavier in contrast with Speeglass 9100XXi. It weighs 1.4 pounds (640 gram), which could be a bit weighty. But after wearing this helmet, we didn’t feel any heaviness.

On inspection, we learned that the credit goes to the five contact points (we talked about it previously) that divides load into five different places.

Nevertheless, Speedglas 9100XXi weighs only 1 pound. Still not an ideal weight but lower than Sentinel A50.

Viewing Area

It is always recommended to go for a wide viewing area. Why? Because you can continue welding even if you have to complete the job from some of the weirdest angles.

And when it’s about the view, the ESAB Sentinel A50 includes a 100 x 60 mm (3.93 x 2.36 inches) viewing area with a fast auto-darkening mechanism. Conversely, the 9100XXi offers a 73 x 107 mm (2.8 x 4.2 inches) viewing area but the auto-darkening feature is not quick as we were expecting it to be.

Shade

The next component is shade and it turns out to be that ESAB Sentinel A50 can be switched from shade 5 to 13 during the welding process. And the unique characteristic is the LCD screen that permits you to quickly select and adjust shades whether you’re working in daylight or darkness.

Also, shade 4 works as a grinding selector and it’s positioned on the helmet’s exterior. So all you need is a single click to activate grind shade. It’s handy and saves a lot of time.

Now judging Speedglas 9100XXi based on shade, you get ranges from 3 to 13 where shade 3 works to dark light and griding state. Shade number 8 to 13 works on dark states, whereas, shade 5 can be selected for the dark state, as well as, fail-safe shade. A Silver Front Panel is also available, but it’s not up to the mark in comparison to Sentinel A50’s LCD.

Sensors

Sensors improve your focus. And luckily ESAB A50 is fitted with four strong sensors, which allows you to use the helmet even on the industrial level. And all sensors engage within 1/25,000 seconds when you strike an arc.

On that side, the Speedglas 9100XXi has only one motion-sensor that only has a single job to do, and it’s turning on and off the filter.

Battery

Lastly, both ESAB Sentinel A50 and Speedglas 9100XXi possess a lithium battery. But Sentinel A50 also charges itself through solar power. Contrarily, the 3M Speedglas 9100XXi has an 1800 hours battery life on a single charge.

Things I Liked/Didn't Like of Esab Sentinel a50

Pros
  • It comprises five contact points to reduce weight pressure on the head
  • The helmet has a built-in LCD screen with an easy controlling system
  • It's a solid welding gear that shows clean results regardless of light or darkness
  • ESAB A50 offers easy lens replacement and adjustment
  • A50 is compatible with all major welding methods and comes with rapid auto-darkening
  • It can run of solar cells, as well as, lithium batteries
Cons
  • Expensive lenses and cannot resist extensive heat conditions
  • A50's sensors have less sensing power as compared to other brands with the same features
  • The LCD screen doesn't have excellent performance when used with gloves on
  • The viewing area is not wide enough

Things I Liked/Didn't Like of Speedglass 9100XXi

Pros
  • It is extremely comfortable due to head and neck protection
  • It has an easy controlling system that can be operated by beginner-level welders
  • It has a wide viewing area that's perfect for challenging tasks
  • 9100XXi is a lightweight and portable helmet that weighs only 1 pound
  • It works tremendously on Arc, TIG, and MIG welding projects
  • Speedglas viewing area is ideal for welders
Cons
  • It only has one AUTO On/Off sensor
  • Speedglas 9100XXi doesn't have a solar charging system

We hope you have enjoyed reading our ESAB Sentinel A50 vs Speedglas 9100XXi. And we are excited to see you welding some mesmerizing projects by using your most favorite welding helmet. But if you’re still unsure about choosing the right helmet, then think about your basic needs and know the purpose of having the helmet.

Remember, the viewing area is the most important factor. And next to it is the comfort level. And both these basic elements are available in Speedglas 910XXi. More to this, this helmet is loaded with lots of useful features. But if appearance and long battery timing matter to you the most, then ESAB Sentinel A50 is the best option.

David Ferguson
 

A professional and passionate welder, a writer who loves to write about the welding and plasma cutting tools. In this site, you will get all the information about welding tools in depth. Just share your feedback and suggestion that will help the website to grow more. Find me: Facebook

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