Like it or not, our phones are a big part of our lives. For many, their importance doesn’t go away when we throw a leg over our bikes. Most riders like to be able to use their phone as a GPS while on the bike. It saves from buying a dedicated GPS. For me I also don’t like having it in my pocket. I tend to wear tighter fitting jackets and I find it just gets in the way.
A small industry has sprung up of phone mounting manufacturers. Over the last couple years lessons have been learned and options have increased. There are several on the market today so it’s time to see who is who and which is the best motorcycle phone mount.
Before you set out to purchase a motorcycle phone mount, be aware of a few things first.
Your options will vary depending on whether you have handle bars or clip-ons. Most manufacturers offer different solutions based on different steering systems. Options like the ability mount on your fork stem nut are one example. Just make sure the options offered will work with your particular set up.
Next, check the diameter of your bars where you plan to mount it. Again, clamps vary depending on the manufacturer. It’s usually not an issue but it’s better to make sure.
With all that said you just want to make sure you select a mount that will protect your phone. Phones are expensive. If it pops off on the highway, forget it. It’s toast. Another potential problem is vibration. Some phones fare better than others but it is a concern in damaging your phone.
We will dive into all these points and help you select a device holder that will suit your needs. We will also pick our favorite here at Moto Affliction and tell you why we like it.
Let’s get to it.
Moto Affliction’s Top Pick
The reason we like the Quadlock system so much is its clean look when mounted.
Quadlock uses a dedicated case you purchase for your particular phone. On the back of the case is a “female” mounting port. Once you install the “male” port onto your bike, whether on the handle bar or other options like the fork stem mount, you simply line up the mounting ports and give it a quarter turn to lock it into place. It looks as if your phone is floating over the bar. You can not see any hardware when sitting on your bike looking at it.
This has an added benefit over the others. It leaves your power and volume buttons on the sides of the phone free of interference. Most phone Mounts utilize some sort of clamp that sometimes leads to the buttons being pressed by the clamp. This can get annoying.
In the box you get a few ring adapters that allow you to mount on different bar diameters. Setting it all up is quick and easy. All the mounting screws come pre dipped in lock-tight to keep them from vibrating loose.
Speaking of vibrating, I would recommend the anti vibe mounting adapter if you are considering the Quadlock. There have been reports in the past of phones getting damaged from vibes. The Quadlock system is a rigid setup with no give. With the small adapter you get a buffer to alleviate the vibes being transferred to your device.
The phone cases are very good. As good as any mid priced regular case. The one drawback to this system is when you inevitably upgrade your phone one day, you will likely need to purchase a new case from Quadlock
Of note also is that you have the ability to mount your phone in either portrait or landscape.
There are a bunch of other options you can order as well. Things like wireless charging adapters and rain ponchos that work with your particular phone.
The Rokform took all that was good about the Quadlock and put it on steroids. CNC aluminum instead of plastics. Plus an added magnet for extra mounting strength and many pivot points to adjust viewing angles. This is a great mount. Why isn’t it our pick for the best you may ask? No other reason other than price. Being about double the price of the Quadlock it’s out of reach for some. The one instance the price is worth it over the Quadlock would be if you do any off road riding. This is the one area I see the superior materials being a useful advantage and worth the extra money.
Like the Quadlock it uses a dedicated phone case with a mounting point on the back to connect to the mount. The mounting point here is an aluminum ring. The case is a bit beefier than the Quadlock cases. This is great but it has its drawbacks for your everyday use if you prefer a more slim case like I do. If you have an Apple you have choices in color for your case. Samsung? No such luck. A bit of a head scratcher there.
The aforementioned CNC aluminum mount clamps to your bar and screws down with a single screw. You have the option of a fork stem mount as well as a ball mount that is compatible with any Ram Mount accessories if you prefer. I like the versatility there. This is a well engineered product and if you have the money go for it.
Ram Mount X Grip
The X Grip is kind of the original motorcycle mounting system for phones. At least the most popular at one point until the new kids came along.
Ram Mounts are a super versatile system with tons of different mounting options.
It utilizes a spring loaded X that grips your phone tightly. From there you can choose a stem size. Half inch, one inch, whatever you need to work for your bike and how close or down low you want your phone to you The stem mounts to a ball on the X grip and another ball on your mount. You then choose your mount. Typically you’d choose either a clamp, U bolt or fork stem mount depending on your application.
The biggest benefit of the Ram Mount system is that you have a lot of control over the placement of the phone after it’s mounted. You can tilt it up, back, left, right. You can really pinpoint your line of sight. You are not tied to the one position like the Quadlock.
It’s not the cleanest looking set up and it suffers from side button interference but it’s a Ram Mount so it can be trusted.
One recommended option you should consider is the tether. This is an additional rubber cradle that wraps around the four corners of your phone. If the X grip fails for any reason, the tether is there to hold it down. It also provides added stability to mitigate vibration.
This is a simple clamp that securely and easily holds your phone. Made with steel and aluminum there is no question about its durability. There are different mounting options such as clamp, M bolts and Ram Mounts. It uses thumb screws to tighten its clamp which is handy but could leave you exposed to theft.
The spring loaded cradle is robust. It firmly holds your phone. It won’t go anywhere. In case you are not confident in its ability, you can purchase and use a rubber tether that cradles your phone as a backup.
A couple drawbacks are the clamp can interfere with your phone’s side button operations depending on your model of phone. Another is that you will have a large clamp on your bike at all times. Not a big deal for ADV style bikes but not sure I’d want that if I owned an expensive Italian bike. That’s a personal choice.
For its excellent materials and simple design it’s worth a look.
To Wrap It Up
We really wanted to add more choices in this review. We wanted to add at least one more option to consider. In the online review world you don’t find many top fours! At the end of the day we felt we could not. In our opinion the drop off is pretty steep after these four options. We couldn’t, with good conscience, offer a sub par product that we simply would never use ourselves.
It’s your phone. Not only is it expensive, it contains huge aspects of your life. We respect that at Moto Affliction. Therefore we feel that with these four options you should find a safe, quality device that will suit your needs.
To recap, for the all around, everyday rider, the Quadlock is a great product. It is reasonably priced and is of quality construction. It’s clean looking and we found no issues with it.
As for the Rokform, it is built with superior materials. No question about it. The question becomes, is having the superior materials and the added price, beneficial to the average rider? We say not really. The Quadlock will do the exact same thing as the Rokform. This comes with one caveat though. Off road. This is where I would trust the superior materials to get me through the bumps, jumps, ruts, and tumbles.
With the proliferation of TFT screens on most new bikes, I expect to see further integration of phones into those systems down the road. Things like Android Auto and Apple Car Play.
Until then these motorcycle phone Mounts offer a practical solution.