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Skiing Magazine’s Frontside Expert Skis (Unisex)

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$1,525 (with binding) This big-turn carver needs a powerful touch but responds with ferocious edge bite and rock-solid stability. Breaks crud like…

$1,525 (with binding)
This big-turn carver needs a powerful touch but responds with ferocious edge bite and rock-solid stability. Breaks crud like an icebreaker through pack ice. Tester’s Take: “Like a bodyguard, this ski won’t drop you.” —Alex Shaffer

$1,139 (without binding) Narrow, snappy, and quick from edge to edge, the Laser SC prefers small- and medium-radius turns. Tester’s Take: “Ice will…

$1,139 (without binding)
Narrow, snappy, and quick from edge to edge, the Laser SC prefers small- and medium-radius turns. Tester’s Take: “Ice will fear you.” —Andy Gaylord

$1,300 (with binding) The quick-pivoting Tornado made crisp short turns at medium speeds and was very easy to steer. Tester’s Take: “Highly…

$1,300 (with binding)
The quick-pivoting Tornado made crisp short turns at medium speeds and was very easy to steer. Tester’s Take: “Highly maneuverable. Perfect for fall-line skiers and tight spots.” —David Currier

$1,550 (with binding) The CX 80 epitomizes a new generation of versatile carving skis that combine abundant carving power with turn-shape…

$1,550 (with binding)
The CX 80 epitomizes a new generation of versatile carving skis that combine abundant carving power with turn-shape variability and ski-anywhere capabilities. Tester’s Take: “Sticks a fork in the old paradigm of skinny-waisted carving skis.” —David Currier

$1,495 (with binding) As the name suggests, this ski is not happy going slowly. It demands precision and power and rewards an obliging skier with…

$1,495 (with binding)
As the name suggests, this ski is not happy going slowly. It demands precision and power and rewards an obliging skier with more of the same. Prefers medium- and long-radius turns. Tester’s Take: “Give this dragster some gas.” —Mike Britt

$1,450 (with binding) Kästle has returned from the dead to grab top honors in this category. This Best-in-Test winner has power to spare and prefers…

$1,450 (with binding)
Kästle has returned from the dead to grab top honors in this category. This Best-in-Test winner has power to spare and prefers big GS arcs to short swingers. Tester’s Take: “Like Zurbriggen: clean, precise, and very powerful.” —Alex Shaffer

$1,100 (with binding) Testers used words like “silky,” “smooth,” and “damp” to describe the Magnum. It wants to be flexed deeply and tipped on edge.…

$1,100 (with binding)
Testers used words like “silky,” “smooth,” and “damp” to describe the Magnum. It wants to be flexed deeply and tipped on edge. Tester’s Take: “A great Western frontside ski – it was stable and quick-turning.” —David Currier

$1,295 (with binding) We didn’t know “raceful” was a word until we found it scrawled on David Currier’s test card. But it’s accurate. This ski is…

$1,295 (with binding)
We didn’t know “raceful” was a word until we found it scrawled on David Currier’s test card. But it’s accurate. This ski is loaded with nerves and power, like a not-quite-broken horse. Tester’s Take: “Easterners, check this out.” —David Currier

Single ski

$1,299 (with binding)
Meaty and powerful, the Contact is a smooth-tracking, stable cruiser that eats up choppy snow and slices clean arcs – mostly the large kind. Tester’s Take: “This ski is as rewarding and fun as Pilates class! Too much fun!” —Mark Lesh

$1,300 (with binding) Make no mistake, this ski is a top-shelf carver. But its greatest attribute is the access it provides to upper performance…

$1,300 (with binding)
Make no mistake, this ski is a top-shelf carver. But its greatest attribute is the access it provides to upper performance echelons for those without race-school technique. Tester’s Take: “Let the blizzard of arcs begin.” —Andy Gaylord

$1,149 (with binding) A ski for control-hungry experts. It’s smooth and powerful without being hyper, and excels at medium-radius turns. Tester’s…

$1,149 (with binding)
A ski for control-hungry experts. It’s smooth and powerful without being hyper, and excels at medium-radius turns. Tester’s Take: “Like a greyhound, the SX 12 wants to race.” —Alex Shaffer