Ski Review 2020
SKI REVIEWS 2020
Click on the name of a model to view a full review
Rossignol Nova 14 Ti [click]
Type of ski : Women's high-end
For women's skis (just as with men's), in this "Cruiser" category we select skis that have an overall quality of consistency. We are not looking for the most high performance or the most accessible skis on the market, we are looking for those which offer a balance between efficiency, comfort, ease of use and versatility.
The Nova 14 Ti is the flagship of Rossignol's Nova range, which fits perfectly with this category. Nova is a new range for the French brand and an equivalent to the men's React, which replaces what was the Famous range.
At 699 euros, the Nova 14 Ti, is not cheap but of course you get what you pay for.
The first observation is that it scores for performance. Reinforced by a sheet of Titanal, the ski is grippy, gives solid support and is very "stable at top speeds".
It's also versatile: it carves or skids under control and is at ease with all types of turn.
The Nova 14 Ti is not demanding. The model is "easy to get to grips with" and is not technically or physically demanding. The successful blend of accessibility and performance make it also a very progressive ski which will allow skiers to move up to a higher technical level.
"Pleasurable ride", "very nice", the feedback from the testers are in agreement about the ski and the experience of the ride. The testers enjoyed the comfort and playful quality of the ski, in particular, the lively rebound at the end of the turn.
An excellent all-rounder, tolerant, accessible and offering a fun ride, le Nova 14 Ti will please intermediate level skiers who wish to evolve technically as well as experts looking for a performance ski which is versatile and comfortable.
Recommended by our reviewers!
Liked: Overall performance
Grip, stability, holds the turn
Fun, good rebound at end of turn
Good for technical progression
Pleasurable to ride...
Rossignol Hero Elite ST TI R22 [click]
Type of ski : Slalom
The Proskilab reviewers came back from the tests of the Hero Elite ST Ti with huge smiles on their faces! This year, the model was fitted with its R22 "race" plate (like its twin from Dynastar). It must be said that the ski offers an exceptional performance–accessibility ratio.
It only takes a few metres to notice that we are dealing with a ski with a well-tempered "slalom" personality. The Hero Elite ST TI R22 shows all the qualities expected in this category: trigger speed, edge-to-edge transition speed, grip, curve precision, and rebound at the end of turns. We are not disappointed, nor even surprised by this diabolically effective ski, "very good and very solid underfoot" that is brimming with energy.
High performance, the Hero Elite ST TI R22 nevertheless remains very accessible, "easy", "healthy" and tolerant for this category, very pleasant to use on a daily basis. It is also a versatile ski for this category that makes it possible to fluidly alternate very dynamic handling with cooler slid paths, on tight and wide curves.
The reviewers nevertheless found that the ski was skied on the front to allow for a "good closing of the curve".
The Rossignol Hero Elite ST TI R22 and the Dynastar Speed Master SL R22 (with very similar, if not identical behaviour) are not the most effective skis on the market. More than weapons to make fast times, they are very sporty skis with an exceptional accessibility–performance ratio.
The performance/accessibility/versatility mix makes it a fun machine. The ski seems to be subject to the good will of the skier, comfortable in all circumstances, never putting them in difficulty and giving a lot of sensations. The comments of the reviewers are eloquent: "excellent ski", "biggest favourite among the skis tested this year", "such a level of performance that's so accessible, it's amazing!"… Anyway, this ski excited the reviewers.
The Hero Elite ST TI is a very progressive ski.
A "leisure" slalom ski par excellence, it will delight a great number of skiers, from the good skier who wants to progress towards the performance of "tight curves" or competitions, to expert skiers who prefer fun rather than pure performance.
The edge lines of the Rossignol and the behaviour are so close to those of the Dynastar that we wanted to consider them as one and the same ski. The Rossignol seemed a little more accessible to us and the Dynastar a little more solid on its supports and better performing, but the differences are really minor and may be due to the preparation of the skis.
Recommended by our reviewers!
Liked: General performance
Excellent performance–accessibility ratio
Excellent versatility for a ski derived from competitions
Rossignol React R6 Compact [click]
Type of ski : Men's recreational groomers
From Rossignol, the new React range replaces the Pursuit range, already reviewed by Proskilab last year.
The React R6 Compact excels in this category, where we are looking for skis that are accessible at the lowest levels and able to advance the skier towards a more technical practice.
As far as accessibility is concerned, it perfectly fulfils the contract. The ski, considered "very balanced", "safe", creates confidence "from the first turns". The reviewers particularly appreciated a "perfect pivot" making it possible to put the ski into curves very easily when flat. Skidding is "comfortable", intuitive and "consistent".
The icing on the cake is that the ski has a natural tendency to loop the curve, which will appeal to skiers with a low technical level.
The React R6 gives you a lot underfoot. It responds when pressed and is even very comfortable in cut handling, large curves at sustained speed, where it remains remarkably stable and gripping.
This makes it a "perfect ski to progress" with "an obvious ability to evolve at the first turn".
It is, however, a little less at ease and requires more engagement in small turns.
A "progressive ski", the React R6 from Rossignol is perfectly placed in this category. Slightly less accessible and more efficient than the Konic 76 from K2, it is aimed at skiers who master the parallel skid riding and want to evolve towards cut riding or carving.
Liked: Accessibility and tolerance
Facilitates the skier's technical progress
Fluency in skidded, sl...
Disliked: A little demanding in small curves...
Rossignol React R8 TI [click]
Type of ski : Men's high-end
The React series replaces the Pursuit range from Rossignol reviewed in previous years. The Rossignol R8 Ti, reinforced with a Titanal plate, is at the top of the range.
In this "top of the range" category, we select skis offering a balanced mix of performance, comfort, accessibility and versatility. The React R8 Ti meets the defined specifications perfectly… with one big plus: fun.
On the performance side, the reviewers were not disappointed. The ski is "playful and incisive". Turns are instantaneous and intuitive thanks to a very present nose. Curve handling is impeccable, especially thanks to an excellent grip and imperial stability.
Accessibility and comfort are at the top. The ski is intuitive and does not require special guidelines. You're instantly "on it". It operates intuitively by requiring very little physical or technical commitment from the skier.
Its versatility is excellent. The React R8 Ti is capable of alternating at will the types of curves and handling. It should simply be noted that it is a little less comfortable in skid handling (in return for its excellent grip) and in large curves.
The reactivity of the ski, which is quite exceptional, the overall ease of use, and the little commitment that it requires make it a fun machine. This is a ski that is perfect for this category. It will offer great sensations to a wide range of skiers, including the less committed.
The React R8 Ti is our best choice for skiers of good to excellent levels, who are not necessarily very keen physically, but who want to have fun on a ski that is at the same time playful and not very demanding.
Recommended by our reviewers!
Liked: Very agile ski
Instantaneous curve entry
Accessible, requires little physical or technical commitment
Disliked: A little less comfortable in skid handling where its grip sometimes penalises it
Slightly less solid supports in turns at high speed...
Rossignol Experience 94 TI [click]
Type of ski : All Mountain 50/50
Two years ago, Rossignol transformed its Experience range from a very "piste" one to a real "all-mountain" one. The shape has become more reasonable and the tips more progressive, to the benefit of their behaviour, which is much improved.
The Experience 94 Ti benefits from the various modifications made and is at the best level of a very competitive category. This year, the ski wins the "Best Ski" medal, which rewards the progress made by Rossignol.
The ski fulfils its "All-Mountain 50/50" ski contract and demonstrates excellent versatility. It is distinguished above all by its accessibility and the liveliness of its behaviour on the piste.
The reviewers praised the general behaviour of the ski, considered very sound, "stable", "reassuring" and that easily forgives small errors of balance. It pivots easily, skid handling is homogeneous. It is therefore an easy ski that can be used with a minimal technical level.
Although very accessible, the ski is not lacking in character – far from it. It proves remarkably incisive and playful, carving very correctly on the piste. The trigger is instinctive, the ski enters curves with a minimum of effort. It is easily deformed, without excess. The rebound is good.
All of these elements contribute to the feeling of a light ski underfoot that is both easy and agile. One reviewer said "on the piste, it turns like a slalom ski". A rare quality for a ski in this category, which are generally relatively uncut skis that are rather aimed at larges bends.
Off-piste, the Experience 94 Ti brings the same qualities. Docile and manoeuvrable, the ski is comfortable on all terrains. A slightly larger waist width would have been appreciated in powder snow, but the 94 mm remain a very good compromise.
If the ski deforms easily enough; it shows its limits at high speed. Pure performance is not its domain of choice. Its added value lies in the mix of accessibility, versatility and manoeuvrability. The Experience 94 Ti is undemanding and gives a lot of sensations.
To sum up, the Experience 94 Ti is a very good All-Mountain ski, efficient and homogeneous, that provides a lot of fun. It will appeal to a wide audience, from intermediate skiers who want to learn off-piste to experienced skiers looking for a versatile and playful ski.
Recommended by our reviewers!
Liked: Behaviour in choppy snow
Surprising handling on the piste
Disliked: Limited at high speed...
Rossignol Hero Elite LT TI R22 [click]
Type of ski : On-piste cruisers
The Hero Elite LT ("Long Turn") Ti is another ski that is well known to the reviewers, evaluated here with the famous "R22" race plate that can be found on other models of the Rossignol/Dynastar group.
The effectiveness and precision of the Hero Elite LT Ti has been tested in previous years. The R22 plate offers an undeniable plus in terms of performance. The ski has power and offers qualities "close to a competitive ski".
Its LT name predisposes it to large bends. It is nevertheless "able to turn tightly when needed" even if it's not its favourite task. It is a versatile ski, very homogeneous, able to alternate all types of handling. The behaviour is "sound" but "punchy when you go for it".
This mix makes it a very enjoyable ski. You can ride in all-comfort sliding mode, then on a nice deserted slope, launch the ski into a series of carving turns at full speed.
The reviewers noticed a slight lack of agility. The ski is very pleasant, efficient and consistent, but it is not very playful due to a slightly slower entry into curves and a less energetic rebound.
The Rossignol Hero Elite LT Ti R22 is a ski that shines with its mix of performance, accessibility, and versatility. We recommend it to skiers of good to expert levels who want a high-performance ski without it being too demanding, for sports practice rather than oriented towards big curves.
Liked: General performance level
Quality of curve handling
Disliked: Rather unplayful, neutral behaviour...
Rossignol Experience 88 Ti W [click]
Type of ski :
Though the Rossignol Experience 94 Ti was awarded "Best ski" in the men's category, the testers rated the Experience 88 Ti W quite strictly.
The performance is good overall. The ski is stable, grippy, particularly at ease with short turns where the rebound is quite poppy.
The Experience 88 Ti W is quite stiff for a women's ski and is close to the men's version: the construction, lengths and sidecuts are the same and the weight is also similar.
The ski is difficult to flex for anyone of an average to good level. The tail, which is quite stiff, impedes the end of the turn, skid turns and when crossing into variable. NB: It is probable that the servicing accentuated this problem.
The Experience 88 Ti W is not a ski for gentle or relaxed skiing. It's a demanding model which requires effort and strength to flex. We recommend it for dynamic skiers with an above average to high technical level.
Liked: Good general performance, particularly on piste
Ease in short turns...
Disliked: Stiff, demanding, less playful
Not especially manoeuvrable
Aimed more at stronger skiers
Less good in variable...