ESAB SENTINEL Auto Darkening A50 Welding Helmet Review

Welders are at an increased risk of injuries from sparks, flash burns, infrared light, heat, and ultraviolet light every time they perform a welding activity. That is why they need to wear a special type of headgear that will protect their eyes, neck, and face. Only the top welding helmets can provide such protection. One of the best welding helmets on the market today is the ESAB Sentinel A50.

Best Features

The most important advantage of wearing a Sentinel A50 is the comfort that it provides. The revolutionary helmet features more than 500,000 different contact points. These contact points allow users to make the necessary adjustment for optimum fit. Ordinary welding helmets can only provide about a fifth of the different adjustments that the A50 can.

The A50 has a ratcheting feature that makes it very easy to adjust the fit on the fly. Reducing any pressure point on the head or face is also made easy simply by shifting one’s weight. This is enough to ensure a snug and comfortable fit.

Protecting the eyes against the extreme brightness of welding sparks is easy with the A50. The lens features a True Color technology that allows welders to have a clear and real-world-view of what they are working on. Assessing the weld pool is never a problem because of the optical clarity of the A50. The lens has excellent rating when it comes to optical distortions, glass impurities, and shading consistency.

The viewing area of the Sentinel A50 is larger than conventional welding helmets. The lens measures 3.93 inches wide and 2.36 inches high. These dimensions give welders a good range of view. Inside the lens is a color LCD screen that features advanced touchscreen functionality. The control buttons are easy to access, allowing for effortless navigation of the different settings.

Speaking of the settings, the A50 allows users to store their preferred welding helmet settings into the device’s memory unit. This feature eliminates the need for constant adjustment of the helmet settings every time you put it over your head. You can easily wear the Sentinel and go straight to weld in an instant.

The feature that offers the biggest advantage for the A50 is its shade selector settings. Other advanced welding headgears can only offer a shade setting of between 9 and 13. The Sentinel A50’s lightest shade setting is at 5. The darkest that the helmet can adjust its shade setting is 13. That is a total of 9 different shade settings that can account for the different brightness conditions during a welding job.

The Sentinel A50 also comes with an external grind mode feature. There’s no need to remove the helmet just so you can finish your work. The A50 lets you work from start to finish with the helmet over your head.

Things to Know

While the dome-shaped lens has anti-scratch finish, it does not offer a high level of scratch and abrasion protection. You can easily scratch the lens surface if you do not observe a safe distance from what you’re doing.

There is also the tendency of the dome-shaped lens to warp when exposed to extremely high temperatures. Some welders report about the cover lens melting during TIG welding. This is especially true if you do not maintain a considerable distance from the welding point.

Best Comparison

There is no question that the Sentinel A50 is a revolutionary welding helmet that provides excellent comfort and cutting-edge features that get any job done. For those who do not have a need for a touch screen functionality, a good alternative is the Jackson Safety 46131 Insight Welding Helmet.

The Insight looks and feels a lot like the Sentinel A50 once you put it over your head. It has a 5-point shade system with a delay function that allows the eyes of users to adjust to the darkened condition. There are auto-dimming sensors that are also easy to access and adjust.


The advanced features of the Sentinel A50 command a hefty price tag. It is what you would expect for a device that provides optimum comfort, while also ensuring your safety during welding procedures. If the price is too steep for you, then the Jackson Safety 46131 Insight is the one to get.

Personal Opinion

Welding requires the best possible protection. The Sentinel A50 provides more than the average bright light and heat protection for anyone. Its greatest strength is its wide range of auto-dimming capabilities; although, its multi-adjustment design is not far behind. Not only is this welding helmet the best when it comes to protecting your eyes, neck, and face. It also happens to be the most comfortable to wear.


The multi-shade, auto-dimming functionality of the ESAB Sentinel A50 makes this welding helmet the best possible headgear for any serious welder. It is the perfect solution for anyone who wants optimum comfort, convenience, and safety in a revolutionary design that can make even the most advanced military hardware look like sissies.

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