I just recently compared the following 2004-2005 skis on ultra-hardpacked eastern-type conditions (no noisy boilerplate...just squeeky-clean, ultra-fine grained re-groomed, re-groomed, weeks-of-cold weather PERFECT edge-tracking surface in wide-open, smooth terrain). All skis had demo bindings.
185lbs. 5' 11" tall 45 year old Masters-racer/coaching type skier...craving clean arcs on groomed surfaces under pressure at speed.
Atomic SX-11 SuperCross
170cm (105-65-95 16m radius)
Stoeckli Laser Cross 170cm (not the Pro)
(111-67-93 17m radius)
Head iXRC 100 Chip SR2 "X-Frame" titanium jacket 170cm and 177cm
(116-68-100 15.6m radius@177cm)
The Atomic SX-11 was indeed the muscle-car race-bred board with a rowdy kick in the tail at the end of the turns when prompted to "go". Excellent grip and quick. Tiring if you don't watch your touch, and definitely not happy in the crud off the groomers. Superb high-grip powerhouse not bothered by anything. Quick quick quick when driven hard...the more you put into it, the more it performs...no wonder they own skiercross titles...definitely a railing thoroughbred. Damp, but with that "high-tension carbon-wood-foamy" typical Atomic feel underfoot...lots of energy...don't get in the back seat! Could vary the turn radius quickly with the proper input. The ski seems to have a front-half and a back-half...the front is used to feed into the turns, then the tail is used for hookup and musclular acceleration. Wicked fun and endless power. Kinda ugly-but-cool-and-rowdy power graphics.
The Stoekli LaserCross was a different feel, typical germanic-euro wood-metal-fiberglass dampness and response underfoot. A very strong, very smooooooth carving tool. Somewhat more reluctant to start the carve than the other skis...took more effort to get it "on-line", but once hooked-up, produces a wonderfully smooth, perfect arc unfettered by changes in the surface conditions. No kick or rowdy tail acceleration, just smooth power for as long as you want to pressure it. Feels like a fine european automobile when carving hard...never distracting or surprising...fairly versatile, able to make quick turns with the proper input. Happier off-piste than the Atomic Supercross...not as single-minded (the "Pro" version may be more like the SX-11...I didn't ski it). Beautiful, high-quality ride, but unexciting. Very nice. Nice, clean, sophisticated graphic design colors. Very nice workmanship.
The Head i.XRC 1100 Chip SuperRailFlex 2 in 177cm was next. I immediately noticed these things RAILED. The instant I rolled an ankle in, the ski immediately went into slot-car mode on edge and wanted to follow its radius like it was being pulled on a string. It immediately wanted me to put more pressure on my uphill ski to create a matched pair of edge grips on the surface, then begged me to roll them both over, drag my hips on the inside, change direction and create a locked-down, slingshot, "slot-car" feel (it's the best description I can think of). Smooth and unfettered arcs across any surface irregularities. Really addictive edge grip and carving behavior. Endless, powerful pressure and kick in the tails if you wanted it, but it seemed to come from the whole ski instead of the tail like the Atomic SuperCross. The faster you rolled both skis from edge to edge, the faster they would change direction...short radius...long radius...it didn't matter. They wanted to be hooked-up and "on-radius" at all times. Not happy with any type of skidding turn...but handled off-piste crud very nicely without wanting constant muscle power to change direction. The 177cm was a high-speed cruising machine...beautiful. Not happy in short turns unless you really flexed it hard on-edge or had crud to float in. I switched to the 170cm version for a quick experiment. The 170cm had the same rail-to-rail slot-car feel, but would allow even tighter radius turns on edge. Still not happy with a sliding turn, but quick, quick, quick. You basically keep your hips in one place and your feet move from full-extension left to full-extention right on rails...fascinating. These skis reset my opinion on what a "carving ski" really does. Graphics are non-descript with basic lettering on black background...not fancy...not boring...no comment...
I like the comment "This is a ski for those who wish to tear through groomed terrain, just to get on the lift to look back and see the tracks that you just left." from http://www.huckzone.com/equipmentreviews.php