The thing about gear is that, its relative to the hill or region. Sure there are the fan clubs...burton in east, ns and venture in colorado, lib/gnu in pnw, and prior in bc....and the reasons are partly based in fact that the team/proto testing is generally done in those areas...therefore a board/gear made to handle those conditions/terrain. In a general forum, like here, some folks forget that the local hill is a huge influence of their riding style, preferences and what they tote as the best. Perhaps at the beginner and intermediate level it doesn't matter so much but at the expert level the little design things for the conditions/terrain just add up. So just take into account their region and riding level and style and perhaps check in with a local core shop and their seasoned riders to see what they ride or recommend.
I absolutely agree with the comments above. I have found that only experience reading the reviews helps to determine any biases.
For myself, I ride the Ice Coast primarily. Powder is something only rumoured out here most of the time. For me, edge hold is extremely important, and I have found that Mervin's magnetraction works best. Therefore, if I reviewed a board, I'm sure I would be critical of ANY deficiency in edge hold. Someone who rides mostly powder might put far less emphasis on that feature and rate the same board more positively than me.
I'd be curious how some of the members on this forum who do review gear regularly feel about this?
Snowolf, BA perhaps?