On the narrower and slightly softer end of the Intense 4×4 line is the 78. This ski is more of a front-side specialist, but still has the profile and the build to handle off-road adventures. Living up to the 4×4 name, these skis are good at going everywhere and doing everything. With a 15-meter turn radius at the 164 cm length, the skis like to make medium-shaped turns at medium speeds. Built with the same basic build as the wider and stiffer models in the line, the 78 has a Sapelli wood core with polyurethane. This is a great blend of light weight and dampness, and when that’s combined with the 3D Profile, you get a ton of maneuverability out of this ski. Reinforced with fiberglass, the 78 has a good amount of snap and pop, but overall, it’s an easy to use carver that loves to be shown around the groomers. With a central sidewall construction, the tips and tails are super-light and quick while the underfoot area has a ton of edge grip and control. Overall, our testers were quite impressed with the performance of this setup, specifically the stability and edge grip.
Caroline Kessler skied the 164, the longest length, and found it to be short. That said, she scored it 5’s out of 5 for quickness, maneuverability, forgiveness, and edge hold. It’s always nice to see when a ski has high scores for both forgiveness and edge hold, as those are somewhat opposing qualities. Her overall impression score of 4 is also impressive, especially given the fact that the ski is about 10 cm shorter than she would probably like. She calls it a “super-fun carving ski. Smooth fast turns, quick edge to edge, and can absolutely rip. Great for anyone looking for a fun ski for groomers and mild off-piste skiing.” Caroline admittedly “underestimated their capability and highly recommends this ski” to front-side skiers.
Kristi Brown skied the 158, thought it was short, but also states that they ski longer than she thought. All 4.5’s from Kristi for the Intense 4×4 78, which even surprised her. “Wow! New contender in the ring! The only thing intense about them is the intense fun you will have. This new construction sets the Intense 78 apart from its contemporaries.” Always nice to have a surprised tester, especially for a ski without metal and a bit too short. It shows a lot about the high-performance ceiling of a lot of modern skis.
On the 164, Darcy Mangan loved the length and had an overall impression score of 5 out of 5. All other marks were 4’s leading us to assume that Darcy was a huge fan of the Intense 4×4 78. Her words back that assumption right up. “LOVE LOVE LOVE. Rails big turns and plays on the side. They’re quiet and stable at speed as well as playful and fun! My smile couldn’t have gotten any bigger!” Reviews do not get much more positive than that, and it’s always fun to see that a ski can bring such joy to a person.
Nifer Hoehn skied the 164 as well, and while not as effusive with her praise as Darcy, she still had a favorable impression. “These skis initiate nicely, but the tail wasn’t as quick as I’d like it to be. Nice hold throughout the center of the turns and they feel very solid.” Her scores of 4 out of 5 for stability and edge hold certainly seem to reinforcer her statements.
The 2020 Dynastar Intense 4×4 78 skis certainly seem to strike a chord with a bunch of our testers. For a light, quick, and stable ski, they really have a lot going on, but at the end of the day, it’s a perfect option for intermediate skiers who spend the majority of their time on groomed terrain.