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2017 K2 Supercharger, Head Titan, Head Magnum

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Demoed the K2 Supercharger (76 waist) in a 175 length at the Basin this week. None of the lifeless, damp "K2 feel" that infected many of their skis over the past decade or so. It's a powerful but not overly stiff or burly ski that loves to run. It's most at home making GS-radius turns on the groomers, but will also power through the 8-10 inches of heavy spring crud we had last week at the Basin. Bumps are not its strong suit: just too firm. An excellent addition to a quiver that has a wider, more nimble soft-snow oriented ski, or a great one-ski quiver for a good, technically strong skier who who likes to rip on the groomers. This is not a ski for casual skidder, upper-body rotator who cruises. As an aside, I much preferred it to the new 2017 Head Titan (80 waist) or new Head Magnum (72 waist). Both were fine skis last year, if a bit firm, but both (and the rest of the new Head Supershapes from what I'm told) have been firmed up this year. Too bad. They might work as an all-day ski if you are over 200 lbs., but I can't imagine your enjoying them if you are much lighter. Where the Superchargers felt like a smooth, powerful extension of my foot and leg, ready to do whatever I asked, the Heads felt like two heavy bricks attached to the bottoms of my boots.
Ah, well...that's why we demo.

post #2 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by mike_m View Post

Demoed the K2 Supercharger (76 waist) in a 175 length at the Basin this week. None of the lifeless, damp "K2 feel" that infected many of their skis over the past decade or so. It's a powerful but not overly stiff or burly ski that loves to run. It's most at home making GS-radius turns on the groomers, but will also power through the 8-10 inches of heavy spring crud we had last week at the Basin. Bumps are not its strong suit: just too firm. An excellent addition to a quiver that has a wider, more nimble soft-snow oriented ski, or a great one-ski quiver for a good, technically strong skier who who likes to rip on the groomers. This is not a ski for casual skidder, upper-body rotator who cruises. As an aside, I much preferred it to the new 2017 Head Titan (80 waist) or new Head Magnum (72 waist). Both were fine skis last year, if a bit firm, but both (and the rest of the new Head Supershapes from what I'm told) have been firmed up this year. Too bad. They might work as an all-day ski if you are over 200 lbs., but I can't imagine your enjoying them if you are much lighter. Where the Superchargers felt like a smooth, powerful extension of my foot and leg, ready to do whatever I asked, the Heads felt like two heavy bricks attached to the bottoms of my boots.

Ah, well...that's why we demo.

More info on lengths, please. If you're lighter, it's entirely possible the 177 Titan/ Magnum are too long. Did you play with the binding position? There are too many folks whose opinions I respect that like these skis that aren't 200 lbs which ends me to believe soemthing's amiss. That said, it's great to hear good news about the new K2 offerings. It's been a long time coming.
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 

I weigh 165. Height 5'10".  The Titan was a 170 length, the Magnum 177.  Both exhibited the same feel and degree of stiffness.  The binding was the standard Head demo binding.  The tip/tail engagement felt appropriate in both.

 

Skiing them reminded me of how Volkl took a very good high-performance ski (G30/G31) that was accessible to a wide range of skiers and gradually stiffened it until it reach its height (depth?) in the very stiff and burly AC50 that was much less fun for all but the heaviest, most powerful skiers.  I fear Head is following in that path.  Most skiers could feel comfortable on the previous-generation Titan, Rally, Magnum.  The current generation, perhaps not so much. 

 

Demo if possible.

post #4 of 9
Haven't demoed yet, but know others who have already ordered their 16-17 titans. All are excellent skiers, a couple north of 200 lbs. Local store has ordered both rally and titan be cause of employee/ownership on snow testing results. They've never carried 2 in the supers shape series. Knowing all these folks and knowing their skiing, it's tough to discount their thoughts. And I agree! Demo away!
post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by mike_m View Post

I weigh 165. Height 5'10".  The Titan was a 170 length, the Magnum 177.  Both exhibited the same feel and degree of stiffness.  The binding was the standard Head demo binding.  The tip/tail engagement felt appropriate in both.

Skiing them reminded me of how Volkl took a very good high-performance ski (G30/G31) that was accessible to a wide range of skiers and gradually stiffened it until it reach its height (depth?) in the very stiff and burly AC50 that was much less fun for all but the heaviest, most powerful skiers.  I fear Head is following in that path.  Most skiers could feel comfortable on the previous-generation Titan, Rally, Magnum.  The current generation, perhaps not so much. 

Demo if possible.

Quoted for truth. Also I note Rossi's done it this year, Fischer's been doing for couple of years. Apparently it's ski manufacturer's version of car design evolution: Slightly bigger each year until the model's so large they can introduce another small model, then repeat. Put another way, why do most skis get a touch stiffer each season? Does rocker encourage it? Do more people park and ride every year? Is it because we're all getting heavier? Do marketing studies or sales show we value stability above all other attributes?
post #6 of 9
Arguably, could we say Head is going back toward the old white titan in terms of who its for? Just curious.
post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 

Update:  Just demoed the 2017 Head Rally (76 waist) in the 170 length.  Interesting.  For whatever reason, it was a bit more supple and even-flexing than the Magnum or Titan.  Odd.  It's the middle-waisted model but felt different from its little and big brothers.  Still firm and powerful, but not overly stiff and, I would guess, more appropriate for a wider range of skiers.  Equal, if not necessarily superior to, the previous-generation Rally.  In case I was imagining things, I talked to a few other testers and they confirmed my impression of the Rally having a different feel from the others.

 

Skied the K2 Supercharger again back to back with the Rally and still preferred the Supercharger, but now they are in the same ballpark and both are definitely worth testing if you are a reasonably accomplished skier looking for a dynamic front-side-oriented midfat. 


Edited by mike_m - 5/8/16 at 6:21am
post #8 of 9

Wish I had tested the Rally. I did get to ski the Magnum 72mm and Titan 80mm @ 170 same days/place. It has been quite a while since I have skied anything narrower than 80mm. I could see myself on a pair of Magnums, maybe the 163 instead of the 170, my dims are 5'7" x 170#. I spent more time on the Magnum and was impressed with how well they handled deeper spring snow/crud as in put them on edge and point them where you want to go. The Rally seemed like more work to me. These skis don't like flat, they like to turn. I didn't spend enough time with either on Ramrod to get comfortable in bumps. I would have tried to buy the Magnums on the spot if I had been able to demo the shorter ski.

post #9 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by mike_m View Post
 

Update:  Just demoed the 2017 Head Rally (76 waist) in the 170 length.  Interesting.  For whatever reason, it was a bit more supple and even-flexing than the Magnum or Titan.  Odd.  It's the middle-waisted model but felt different from its little and big brothers.  Still firm and powerful, but not overly stiff and, I would guess, more appropriate for a wider range of skiers.  Equal, if not necessarily superior to, the previous-generation Rally.  In case I was imagining things, I talked to a few other testers and they confirmed my impression of the Rally having a different feel from the others.

 

Skied the K2 Supercharger again back to back with the Rally and still preferred the Supercharger, but now they are in the same ballpark and both are definitely worth testing if you are a reasonably accomplished skier looking for a dynamic front-side-oriented midfat. 

Mike I would agree that the 2017 Rally is approachable. I actually thought it felt like a bit of noodle when hand flexing it but when skiing it I was surprised by how well it held up to my aggressive 6'1" 185lbs. I was on the 170 - the KERS actually works. Initially I thought of the Rally as a lighter, wider coaching backup for less ideal conditions to my Head RD SL (119/66/99). I love new construction but to me the shape and behavior when not on edge is a deal breaker. For disclosure I hate park and ride skis and something that refuses to track well flat or at low edge angles. My baseline is the Head SL WC and my Kastle MX's which do exactly what you tell them but you gotta show up to ski em. Way too much taper going on here if this ski was say 125-76-104/7 ish I expect I would love it. By contrast the new Supershape Speed had only a hint of it wanting to hook up or wander when flat, tracked much better and had race room grip and energy while still being pretty approachable. Could see coaching the Speed the Rally not so much. Didn't try the K2 based on my similar experience with their previous feel. Your comments suggest a K2 demo - thanks! Mags seem to be loving the new Rally which again goes to show why folks should demo whenever possible.

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