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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So, I happened across a pair of these bindings for well below MSRP (sub 175) a few months ago from an undisclosed shop and I'm only reviewing right now—so here goes!

Ridden with 2011 158 malolo/2012 150 nug w/ sz. 9.5 Nike Zoom Force 1's @ 15/-12 for about 12 days (10 on the lolo and 2 on the nug).

First impressions:
They're light. The build quality is impressive. I own a pair of Union SLs and Flux DMCs/DS45s and as much as I love them—out of the plastic they had scuffs/molding flux/inconsistency on 'em right off the bat while the diodes had no such blemishes. I guess this sort of thing is expected from a $399 binding but it made me a bit giddy. They're super light. Hand flexing the highbacks was nigh impossible. The padding on the single carbon blade makes a weird sound. Did I mention they're super duper light?

Fit/Comfort/Adjustability
Fit perfectly. Burton has the best ratchets (smoothest actuating) in the business and their cap strap is great, though not as good as flux's—in my humble opinion.* The straps have no tool adjustment and are very comfortable despite the lack of material—it's odd they're very flexible with a good amount of give despite the hard charging nature of the bindings themselves. EST has great stance options—but the compatibility does suck ass. Basically, I enjoy the positioning variation of ESTs and I think the strap feel rivals Flux in plushness.The only thing bad I can say is that it was a chore adjusting the highback though, no FLAD so it was kinda like the Flux DMC's except with a bit more adjustment range.

Flex:
Laterally, they've got surprising give in the straps and spring in the base. The hinge tech adds a bit not only in terms of movement but also ollie power/rebound. Really the hinge was the main reason I was really interested in these. Helped me make super ollies on my nug that already weighs nothing! From back to front they're stiff as hell.

Response and Ride:
Very responsive—the combo of the stiffness in some places and give in other places make for very responsive but also very smooth bindings. I feel like they turn very smoothly and ultra quickly but aren't psychic think-and-turn quick like unions or dmcs and I think it's the flex in the base ameliorates the harshness and sudden nature of quick turns/carves. Mainly, the highback is serious business while the rest of the ride qualities were a party.

Dampness/Shock Absorbtion:
The shredbed 3.0 is good but I honestly prefer cantbeds or thinbeds on ESTs. I don't really see the point of using EST bindings for greater feel when it almost feels like I'm wearing 2000s asian girl heels under my boots—okay that's a little facetious but 3.0 beds are thick comparably to thinbeds and cantbeds. I'll say the stock cushioning isn't bad though and provides great shock absorbing but I feel that these are already comfortable enough without the weird polka dotted footbed.

Summary:
Yeah, they're overkill. Whatever. They're nice though. Worth $399+? No... well, maybe? I'd still say no—unless you're a drug dealer. If you're planning to get them, get them now before they mark them up again and sell them next year.

*I actually prefer the release mechanism on the Union Ankle Strap, the toe release is a pain in the ass though...
 

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So, I happened across a pair of these bindings for well below MSRP (sub 175) a few months ago from an undisclosed shop and I'm only reviewing right now—so here goes!

Ridden with 2011 158 malolo/2012 150 nug w/ sz. 9.5 Nike Zoom Force 1's @ 15/-12 for about 12 days (10 on the lolo and 2 on the nug).

First impressions:
They're light. The build quality is impressive. I own a pair of Union SLs and Flux DMCs/DS45s and as much as I love them—out of the plastic they had scuffs/molding flux/inconsistency on 'em right off the bat while the diodes had no such blemishes. I guess this sort of thing is expected from a $399 binding but it made me a bit giddy. They're super light. Hand flexing the highbacks was nigh impossible. The padding on the single carbon blade makes a weird sound. Did I mention they're super duper light?

Fit/Comfort/Adjustability
Fit perfectly. Burton has the best ratchets (smoothest actuating) in the business and their cap strap is great, though not as good as flux's—in my humble opinion.* The straps have no tool adjustment and are very comfortable despite the lack of material—it's odd they're very flexible with a good amount of give despite the hard charging nature of the bindings themselves. EST has great stance options—but the compatibility does suck ass. Basically, I enjoy the positioning variation of ESTs and I think the strap feel rivals Flux in plushness.The only thing bad I can say is that it was a chore adjusting the highback though, no FLAD so it was kinda like the Flux DMC's except with a bit more adjustment range.

Flex:
Laterally, they've got surprising give in the straps and spring in the base. The hinge tech adds a bit not only in terms of movement but also ollie power/rebound. Really the hinge was the main reason I was really interested in these. Helped me make super ollies on my nug that already weighs nothing! From back to front they're stiff as hell.

Response and Ride:
Very responsive—the combo of the stiffness in some places and give in other places make for very responsive but also very smooth bindings. I feel like they turn very smoothly and ultra quickly but aren't psychic think-and-turn quick like unions or dmcs and I think it's the flex in the base ameliorates the harshness and sudden nature of quick turns/carves. Mainly, the highback is serious business while the rest of the ride qualities were a party.

Dampness/Shock Absorbtion:
The shredbed 3.0 is good but I honestly prefer cantbeds or thinbeds on ESTs. I don't really see the point of using EST bindings for greater feel when it almost feels like I'm wearing 2000s asian girl heels under my boots—okay that's a little facetious but 3.0 beds are thick comparably to thinbeds and cantbeds. I'll say the stock cushioning isn't bad though and provides great shock absorbing but I feel that these are already comfortable enough without the weird polka dotted footbed.

Summary:
Yeah, they're overkill. Whatever. They're nice though. Worth $399+? No... well, maybe? I'd still say no—unless you're a drug dealer. If you're planning to get them, get them now before they mark them up again and sell them next year.

*I actually prefer the release mechanism on the Union Ankle Strap, the toe release is a pain in the ass though...
Thanks for your useful input!

kevin

________
pcb assembly
 

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My highback cracked first day of use, I got a new one and now it has started to crack aswell. Also the little pads that seperate the highback from the heel cup will not stay on, they last a few days before falling off and changing your forward lean. I find myself having to scrape snow off the footbed almost every time I strap in, the little circle indents seem like they were engineered to trap snow and hold it.

All in all they feel awesome but they have a few flaws and are not durable at all.
 

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I bought non est diodes the minute they came out at a sample sale in Denver a while back.

I concur with the review:
light
responsive--- the highback is VERY stiff.
comfortable = great straps and buckles.

Forward lean is complete nonsense -- It take forever to get right and is pretty much impossible to change on the fly ---(Maybe this has changed as I an early sample before they went public)

I don't ever touch my lean, so it's not a problem.

All in all, a solid, aggressive freeride binding.

What B really needs to do is bring back the CO2..
 
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