The Malavita is being marketed as a more freestyle park binding on burtons website and is rated on the same level of flex as the cartels which is a 6/10, but personally when I checked out the mala compared to the cartels you could feel a notice difference in flex in between these two bindings with the malavitas being the stiffer binding with a stiffer frame, stiffer highback, stiffer straps. If the cartels are a 6/10 on flex I'd say the malavita is a 7/10 and than the big brother diode coming in at 8/10
I currently ride 2007 cartels, they are great bindings and there is nothing wrong with them cept that I picked up a stiffer board and boot geared for freeriding and think a stiffer binding would compliment my setup. Though the Diode is geared towards freeriding purpose, I was not impressed with the binding. Lean adjustment isnt a simple twist and turn like all other burton bindings, there is no cushioning on the highbacks. Just doesnt seem like it would be a comfortable ride for a period of time.
Soooo I took the dive and ordered the malavitas to fill a niche of a slightly more responsive and stiffer binding than the cartels but something that would be comfortable to ride for a prolonged period of time. Its arriving tomorrow, hope their what I've wished for and more *fingers crossed*