Here are the answers to the most popular questions I’ve been asked about the NUVIZ Head-Up Display system since I started riding with it 2000 miles ago:
1: Yeah, it’s awesome.
2: No, it’s not a gimmick.
3: No, it doesn’t distract me.
4: I really, really like it.
5: 699 euros.
6: On sale now.
7: It might look like a weird bolt-on but it’s a massively useful tool that I now don’t want to ride without.
So now you’ve got the gist of my thoughts on the NUVIZ. And any thoughts you might have that it looks daft, will add weight or wind noise to the riding experience or anything other than positive – put them aside for the rest of this report.
What the NUVIZ is made up of is, basically, a smartphone that bolts onto the side of your helmet and projects a live screen onto a viewing area mounted in a clear acrylic ‘block’ which sits just in front of your visor.
The relevant/required information that you want sits about two inches away from the visor on the outside. You can tweak the projection block so that it’s in the ideal place for your line of sight.
The screen is in colour, easy to read and the functions are accessed via a controller which you can mount in various places on your bike.
NUVIZ offers up a few screens to scroll through including Phone, Music, Rides, Camera and Speed. Using it is child’s play. Internally loaded maps and a plethora of guidance voices – via the app – give you the ability to plan a route, select warnings for speeding etc. and connect the device to other Bluetooth systems you may already have hardwired into your helmet.
The battery is charged in-unit and lasts a long time. I rode from 8.30 in the morning until 1am the following days with the unit on for the majority of the time and it lasted the whole ride long. If you’re not using the live scrolling maps or making a call, shut the screen off, which drastically extends the batter life.
On my mega-ride across a chunk of Europe, I encountered rain of Biblical proportions and the unit performed perfectly for the hours of severe wet weather that we rode through.
The NUVIZ is easy to fit, comes with its own headphone speakers and microphone and in a very short matter of minutes becomes second nature to use.
In fact, after the first handful of miles I was aware that the small screen had started to ‘float’ into my vision as I was looking at the dash from time to time. Effectively my vision had adapted to the small screen so that I had a screen about the same size as my bike’s dash.
Focusing on the NUVIZ is very easy – even on the move. The focal point is about the same distance away from your head as the back of your hand when it’s on the handlebar. It’s a neat trick and means that you’re already used (conditioned, almost) to switching your focus from the road ahead to that dash-type distance.
A massive benefit with the NUVIZ is the way you use and interact with the camera, housed in the front of the unit just below the projection unit. You select the camera via the handlebar controller and the projection screen shows you what the camera sees in real time. No more guessing where the camera’s pointing. Pictures are automatically loaded on to your phone’s gallery as they’re taken and video is recorded onto the on-board Micro SD card.
Honestly, I could go on about how much use – and fun – this system is for many more words than I have space for here. What I will say in summary though is: try one. Speak to the NUVIZ guys. Go and have a look at the website. Watch our walkthrough video of the unit.
It is worth your while getting up to speed with this excellent bit of kit because, hand on Head-Up unit, this thing really will change your experience of big or small-miles riding.