Burton made good boards for a long time. A decade ago, Burton was ahead of the pack. It doesn't appear that way now because other companies are stepping up their game. I wouldn't recommend mid to low range boards from Burton, but I see nothing wrong with their high-end models. Brand name recognition is the reason why they cost more, and the same can be said about Nike.
Hating Burton because they are mainstream is something I often hear from "hypbeasts" here in trendy California. You shouldn't dislike something if you never tried it.
I guess I have to take your word for it. I never owned a Burton board but I also never rode on one that I thought was bad and I've ridden a few. I was curious as to which Burton boards people are referring to when they're talking about bad quality and what specifically are they comparing them to.
days not on snow in 2011: 11