Ski Review 2017
SKI REVIEWS 2017
Click on the name of a model to view a full review
Head Super Joy [click]
Type of ski : Women's high-end
Unable to review this ski last year because of a preparation problem, the Super Joy from Head is back with a vengeance this year and (easily, we have to admit) scoops the "Best Ski" medal for this category.
The first quality noted by the PROSKILAB™ reviewers is its incredible versatility. The ski is happy in all types of ride, snow conditions and terrain. From gliding around on soft snow to aggressive rides on hard pack and steeps, the Super Joy is quite simply ready for anything.
Cruising at medium speeds, the reviewers noted its smoothness and comfort. When you pull out the stops, without being a racing tiger, the Super Joy has the qualities of a true sports ski.
The ski is efficient on all types of slope. Turn entry is fast, almost incisive. Turn hold is quite simply magnificent; in addition, the ski is incredibly stable and grippy. At faster speeds, it gives a real feeling of confidence.
Described as a "perfect advanced ski" by one reviewer, the Super Joy shines for its consistency and the sensations it offers. It's not only user-friendly but also performs superbly, is comfortable, and extremely enjoyable. PROSKILAB™ warmly recommends it for intermediary riders beginning to master curved turns up to experts who want the ideal combination of sport and pleasure.
Recommended by our reviewers!
Liked: Extremely versatile
Rapid and easy turn entry
Comfortable in dynamic turns
Disliked: Nothing special...
Head WC Rebels iSpeed [click]
Type of ski : Giant slalom
We decided to include the iSpeed Rebels from Head in the PROSKILAB™ review after the pre-tests and discussions with the brand, and we were not disappointed. This model really walks the talk in powder! There's no doubt, it’s the kind of ski that invites you to rip through the snow.
With incisive initiation, fantastic turn performance, exceptional stability and explosive push-off, the ski reminds anyone who may have forgotten that it has a true racing ski pedigree.
The model is a devil in disguise that just invites you to step on the gas; in most cases, the skier reaches his limits before the ski does.
But the model also demands a lot in return for its elitist performance and requires considerable technical and physical prowess. It's not an easy ski since it's very stiff with little flex. According to the reviewers, it requires "constant engagement", and perfect positioning...
The iSpeed Rebels is a powerful and aggressive ski, designed for performance, but unfortunately lacking the accessibility needed for the programme. It's a great choice for very good, expert and competition skiers looking for performance above all.
Liked: A stiff, efficient ski
Punchy and playful
Exceptional hold in turns, especially impressive in long turns at very high speeds
Disliked: Requires concentration
Technically and physically demanding
Head Premium [click]
Type of ski : Men's high-end
As soon as you hit the piste, you know that Head's "Premium" is designed for carving.
Its well-distributed stiffness helps it to excel in this domain. Turn entry is fast and incisive, grip is excellent and rebound is full of punch. It has no complexes attacking the turn, and edge hold is incredibly stable, linking turns extremely smoothly, even at considerable angles. Its shape, the quality of turn initiation and the energetic rebound all add up to a ski that which performs exceptionally well and is fun in short-radius turns.
Like most skis designed for ultimate carving performance, it is distinctly shaped (with a wasp waist) and a stiff tail. On the other hand, skid turns are a challenge. When edging, the tail tries to anchor, hampering the ski's rotation.
Not versatile enough to do well in this category, the Head Premium is nonetheless an excellent ski for good to expert carving fans.
Liked: Excellent carving qualities
Exceptional performance in short-radius carved turns
Great stability in turns
Disliked: Less comfortable in skid turns
Requires a certain degree of technical prowess
Behaviour deteriorates at high speeds
Head Strong Instinct Ti [click]
Type of ski : Men's recreational groomers
The Strong Instinct Ti from Head immediately stands out as a ski adapted to the weakest levels. The ski enters turns easily, skid turns are very consistent and reassuring and its tail helps produce successful parallel turns after a snowplough opening. It's brilliant for beginners and fair to middling riders.
In addition, the ski is extremely comfortable and requires little physical engagement. Highly versatile, with 83 mm underfoot, the ski is happy on all types of snow and is especially agreeable on soft snow.
Very user-friendly and reassuring, the String Instinct Ti nonetheless performs well overall. Carves and grip are especially good for the category. The ski is adaptive and will allow fair riders to advance to more technical moves.
However, the reviewers also noted a lack of punch. Globally docile and reassuring, the ski does not kick back much energy, to the detriment of riding enjoyment. In addition, stability becomes increasingly haphazard at high speeds.
The Strong Instinct Ti is an excellent choice for a wide public from beginners to good skiers (medium to heavy frames) who're looking for a versatile and consistent model.
Liked: Stable when cruising
Overall versatility, comfortable in all snow conditions
Easy turn initiation and entry
An enjoyable ski
Disliked: Clumsy, lacks punch
Head I. Supershape Magnum [click]
Type of ski : On-piste cruisers
The 13.1m radius on the Supershape Magnum from Head gives an indication of what's to come. This is a ski designed for short turns, where its smooth and nimble performance is impressive. As one reviewer put it: "you have the impression you've got a snowblade under your feet!"
Initiation is immediate, grip is excellent and turn control impeccable... as long as you're well positioned. In fact the ski will easily overdrive if distribution to the fore is too great. Some reviewers found it performed best with slight pressure on the heel. Once you've found the right positioning, the ski is incredibly easy and efficient, linking parallel turns at a fiendish rate and with virtually no effort.
However, the ski's highly chiselled shape (which well deserves its name) and the stiffness of the heel tend to hamper skid and slide turns. In addition, when you want to ride wider turns, the ski's performance quickly deteriorates, with a tendency to lose pressure and grip.
The Supershape Magnum is obviously a highly specialised 'short turn' ski that we recommend for good to very good athletic skiers looking for an incisive and responsive tool for dynamic and tight turns.
Liked: A highly responsive and playful ski
Good fun overall
Very good short turn performance
Good carving qualities
Disliked: Skid/slide turns difficult
Mono-programme and mono-radius
Requires time to adapt to find the right positioning
Head Absolute Joy [click]
Type of ski : Women's recreational groomers
Last year, we detected a problem of preparation with the Absolute Joy that Head gave us to test, so we wanted to review the model again this season.
The ski perfectly fulfills its mission in terms of accessibility, which the reviewers considered as excellent. It’s very user-friendly, and obviously happy in the snowplough and skid turns, as well as entering turns.
However, like many of its rivals this year, it's not very adaptive. Progress to more technical turns is hampered by a lack of overall performance and carving performance.
"A very nice ski" according to one rider, the Absolute Joy is a true initiation ski, which will suit female skiers from beginners through to intermediary level.
Liked: A very user-friendly ski
Requires little physical engagement
Disliked: Not very adaptive
Lack of overall performance
Less comfortable in carved turns