Salomon X-max X12 (2017)


Rating: 2.70 / 5
Price: $950.00
Year: 2017
Gender: Female
Waist Width: 73
Tip/Tail/Waist: 120-73-103
Lengths: 155, 160, 165, 170, 175

Stability at speed: 2.75 / 5
Hard snow performance: 3.01 / 5
Crud performance: 1.99 / 5
Flotation: 1.29 / 5
Forgiveness: 2.99 / 5
Overall: 2.70 / 5

For the ultra-light, super-quick twitchiness of carbon, see the X-Max X12. But for reassuringly calm performance at the highest speeds, many expert hard-snow carvers will prefer the heft and edge security of the metal-reinforced Salomon X-Max X12. It's a precision arc machine built for race-ready performance on groomer days, sold only as a system, with a sturdy 12-DIN Salomon XT Ti binding. Salomon expanded the Frontside Performance X-Max series of narrow, high-precision carvers to three models for 2017, renaming the X-Max the X-Max 12 and building a model above it (X-Max X14) and one below it (X-Max X10). All share the same 73-mm waist, for hard-snow quickness and edge grip. The signature technology is Salomon's Powerframe reinforcement system, a layer at the top of the layup that is strategically shaped to deliver maximum energy to key transmission zones tip and tail. In the top of the line X14, its all carbon fiber, for ultralight quickness and responsiveness. In the X12, it's Titanal (aluminum alloy), for a heftier, more robust dampness at high speeds. In both models, the Powerframe layer extends all the way through the tail (Powerframe+), for strong turn finishes and rearward support. In the X10, it stops short of the tail, for easier-to-skid turn finishes that allow quicker speed control (Powerframe, no "plus"). For additional stability and dampness, both top models also feature Salomon's Powerline reinforcement: a narrow tip-to-tail strip of snappy carbon fiber mellowed by a sheath of rubber. It's anchored underfoot but free-floating tip and tail in a way that allows the ski to bend roundly into its arc. The top two models are full wood-core constructions; the X10's Hybrid more-forgiving core is foam down the middle (light, soft, economical) with wood over the edges where it's needed for edging strength. The top two models feature Koroyd tips; a honeycomb structure of air pockets that reduces swing weight. All are sold as systems (with binding). Salomon has been headquartered in Annecy, France, since its founding there in 1947. Along with sister brands Atomic and ArcTeryx, it is a division of Amer Sports of Finland, which acquired it in 2005. Its U.S. headquarters are in Ogden, Utah. -J.C.