2023 Ski Comparisons: Men's 90mm All Mountain Ski Guide: Lead Image

Ski Comparisons - Ski Reviews

2023 Ski Comparisons: Men's 90 mm All Mountain Ski Guide

Next up on the Comparison list, the men’s 90 mm All-Mountain skis take center stage. There’s a pretty good variance of skis here, ranging from competition park skis all the way to ripping carvers and everything in between. For where we are in Vermont, skis on this list make excellent daily drivers, combining edge grip and carving capabilities with interesting shaping concepts that add to soft snow versatility. Have fun!

AT A GLANCE


2023 Volkl Revolt 90 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

168, 174, 180, 186 cm

19.5 m at 174 cm

118 / 90 / 118 mm

1818 g at 180 cm

Balance, Poise, and Composure in the air.


Overview:

Whenever a ski is developed in conjunction with skiers like Andri Ragettli, Birk Ruud, and Nick Goepper, it’s sure to have at least a few redeeming qualities. For 2023, the Revolt 90 takes over Volkl’s symmetrical twin tip slot from the 87 of yesteryear, adding a few mm and altering the shaping just enough to make it a smooth and strong performer in the park and pipe. Compared to more directional twins like the Captis, Bent 90, and even Prodigy 1 on our list, the Revolt 90 is far more competition-oriented and more one-dimensional in that regard. The matching taper and rocker sets it apart from the outgoing 87, as taper in park skis is gaining traction as the way to go when it comes to drifty and smeary takeoffs and landings. This ski is about as balanced and centered as it gets, and competition park skiers wouldn’t have it any other way. While there’s a limit to the ski’s all-mountain capabilities, that doesn’t mean you can’t rip it around the woods or groomers, it’s just not quite as competent or confident in those realms.

Who it's For:

Aspiring and current freestyle competitors. You do not want to settle for anything less than the ski designed for and by professionals.

Price: $599.99


AT A GLANCE


2023 Volkl Kendo 88 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

163, 170, 177, 184 cm

28 / 14 / 22 m at 170 cm

129 / 88 / 113 mm

1923 g at 177 cm

Edge Grip, Confidence, Energy


Overview:

With some fantastic updates for 2023, the Volkl Kendo 88 continues its superiority of the class in terms of grip, energy, and stability. They altered the titanal frame to be “tailored,” much like the carbon tips. This allows the engineers at Volkl to change up the amount of metal used per length of ski, giving the skier a more personalized feel. The metal in the shovel has been narrowed, but replaced with the carbon stringers that create a quick and agile initiation phase. Additionally, the gap between the frames in the underfoot zone has been opened up, allowing for a more natural flex. The big change, most likely, is the shortening of the radius by 1 meter, making Kendo a sharper and more responsive carver than ever before. The metal laminate and the shortened turn shape put it right there with the updated K2 Mindbender 89 Ti, and the ever-awesome Salomon Stance 90. While it still sits confidently with the Brahma 88 and Enforcer 88, it has become slightly more friendly than those as of late, and has done so without forgoing its super high-end performance ceiling.

Who it's For:

All-mountain enthusiasts who crave the carve and love being on edge. You want to stand on your skis and feel the power and stability from tip to tail.

Price: $699.99


AT A GLANCE


2023 Stockli Stormrider 88 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

166, 175, 184 cm

18.4 m at 175 cm

128 / 88 / 114 mm

1785 g at 175 cm

Silence, Quality, Range


Overview:

Smooth, quiet, and incredibly secure, the Stockli Stormrider 88 continues its legacy of being one of the most versatile and highest quality skis on the planet. Slightly more flexible in the shovel, and lighter than you may think, the Stormrider gets its performance from a few different areas, including the metal topsheet and the rubber dust. Mainly business from the mid-body on back through the tail, the Stormrider still has an approachable shovel, putting it right in there with the Dynastar M-Pro 90 and the Declivity 92 Ti. In fact, it shares a lot of similar sound-quality traits with the Armada, even while it’s 4 mm narrower underfoot. As far as range is concerned, the Stormrider continually ranks super-high in its ability to satisfy a broad variance of skier types. Progressing intermediates all the way through aggressive experts will feel right at home on the Stormrider. Compared to the other high-dollar ski on the list, the Kastle MX 88, the Stormrider is quieter and more supple, while it doesn’t have quite the high-octane character of the Kastle.

Who it's For:

Quality enthusiasts who love the feeling of a quiet and smooth ski underfoot. You do not like vibrations or chatter in your skis and are perfectly happy combining all-mountain cruising with adventurous conditions and terrain.

Price: $1,099.00


AT A GLANCE


2023 Scott Pure Free 90 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

170, 177, 184 cm

19 m at 177 cm

126 / 90 / 111 mm

2050 g at 184 cm

Compliance, Intuitiveness, Dampness


Overview:

With a thicker core, poplar wood, and partial metal laminate, the Scott Pure Free 90 is a fantastic addition to this comparison list. When we first got on it this past winter, it was noticeable that the ski had some heft and power to it, even without full metal laminates. It achieves a lot of the same qualities that make Ranger 90 so attractive to a lot of skiers—lighter and more maneuverable tips and tails, strong and stable underfoot, and well-rounded enough that you don’t have to think too hard about what’s on your feet. The Pure Free 90 is a very intuitive ski that will sail down the hill with a confident silence about it—much like the Liberty Evolv 90. Those both use thicker core profiles to put more material between your foot and the snow, and that gap makes for a more insulated feel. This sets it apart from thinner models like the Maverick 88 or even Kendo 88 in that, with those skis, you can feel what’s underneath. Not so much with the Scott—it's got some mass to contend with for sure.

Who it's For:

Adventurous skiers who are looking for something solid, smooth, and stable, but also maneuverable and versatile. You like it when a ski does what it’s told without complaint.

Price: $780.00


AT A GLANCE


2023 Salomon QST 92 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

152, 160, 168, 176, 184 cm

16 m at 176 cm

128 / 92 / 116 mm

1838 g at 176 cm

Short-swing turns, Flotation, Friendliness


Overview:

Right when you think Salomon has it nailed with a ski, they go ahead and change it up, and to their credit, continue to make improvements. The 2023 QST 92 gets the tweaks that made the QST 98 a staff and skier favorite last year, putting the new 92 in a pretty unique spot among this list. We get the long rocker profile, the shorter turn radius, and the smooth and quiet construction that make this ski an almost perfect option for a huge percentage of skiers. We’ve said it before regarding the QST 92 and will say it again—if you do not know what ski to buy, buy this one. The Line Blade Optic 92 and DPS Pagoda Piste 90 RP stand out as similar overall skis in terms of turn shape, profile, and style of skier. They’re all great floaters for their widths with similar taper and personalities. Round, clean, and effortless, the QST 92 makes awesome turns in any conditions or terrain. These new updates also serve to distance it a bit more from the Stance 90 or 96 insofar as those skis are firmly planted in the directional high-performance category while QST has a more adventurous spirit.

Who it's For:

Everyone. Quite literally everyone.

Price: $549.95


AT A GLANCE


2023 Salomon Stance 90 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

168, 176, 182, 188 cm

18 m at 176 cm

126 / 90 / 108 mm

1868 g at 182 cm

Carving, Versatility, Bumps


Overview:

Whereas the QST 92 is like a warm hug, the Stance 90 is slightly colder in its approach. This is not to say that it is unruly in any way, rather it takes a little more time to get to know. When you do, though, and if you appreciate a strong and sturdy ski that loves to be pushed, the Stance 90 will become quite endearing. I’d put this thing up there with Enforcer, Brahma, Kendo, and MX 88 for stability and power, but it differentiates itself with its versatile nature. As one of the better mogul skis on the list, at least for heavier skiers, the Stance 90 can be pushed and flexed without breaking composure. It’s probably more in line with Declivity 92 than anything else on the list, and that’s good company to be with. Like a lot of other skis on this list, such as Scott Pure 90, Liberty Evolv 90, or Stormrider 88, the Stance 90 is very intuitive and feels solid and silent underfoot. In a ski world in which groomers seem to be expanding and growing with each and every day, it’s important to get a ski to match the amount of corduroy that we see. Stance 90 strikes a fantastic balance between arcing clean and round turns on-piste with off-trail versatility and soft snow performance.

Who it's For:

True all-mountain skiers in almost every sense of the term, but especially those at the higher end of the skill spectrum. You are an accomplished skier looking for something that will stand up to the rigors of aggressive skiing while also allowing for fun and relaxation.

Price: $649.95


AT A GLANCE


2023 Nordica Enforcer 88 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

165, 172, 179, 186 cm

16.5 m at 179 cm

121.5 / 88 / 109.5 mm

2018 g at 179 cm

Stiffness, Grip, Stability


Overview:

Strong, stiff, and burly, the Nordica Enforcer 88 brings freeride into a much narrower shape than most ski engineers these days probably ever intended. As the skinnier sibling to the benchmark 100 mm waist ski, the 88 has considerably more edge grip and a stiffer tail, but still shares a shadow with the wider skis in the line, so really blurs the line between freeride and all-mountain, all the while checking in at 88 mm underfoot. Enforcer, along with Brahma, Kendo, Stance, and Kastle, is as powerful as it gets, but that does come at the cost of weight and a slightly unforgiving nature. It’s not amazing in the bumps or trees like Ripstick 88, Bent 90, or Captis, but on the other end, the on-trail performance is at the top of the class. With carbon-infused fiberglass, a strong wood core, and two sheets of metal, the Enforcer 88 is all there. That build makes the ski want to go fast, and when it does, it certainly lights it up from top to bottom.

Who it's For:

Aggressive expert skiers who are looking for top-flight stability and power. You appreciate a strong ski that is unflinching at speed, but still want some sort of playfulness or freeride inspiration built in.

Price: $699.99


AT A GLANCE


2023 Line Blade Optic 92 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

161, 168, 175, 182 cm

17 m

125 / 92 / 115 mm

1699 g at 175 cm

Quickness, Agility, Playfulness


Overview:

It’s always fun when there’s a new ski on the wall. We can sometimes get complacent with carryover skis and slight changes, but when a completely new ski arrives, it’s always just a bit more fun. The Line Blade Optic 92 somewhat takes the spot of the Sick Day 88 and 94, offering up a great deal of versatility in a light and maneuverable package. The Optic 92 is the only ski in the line without metal, but uses a blend of wood, rocker, and capwall construction to get a surprising amount of performance. Without metal, and with rocker that lines up with the capped portion of the build, the tips and tails are on the flexible and playful side, much like what we see with Captis and Bent 90. If you’re looking for true carving performance, there are better options, but what the ski lacks in stability, it more than makes up for in quickness, maneuverability, and playfulness. The tail splay is enough for park performance, and while we’d say that’s a nice complement to the other performance features of the ski, it’s certainly not a highlight.

Who it's For:

You’re looking for something light and maneuverable, but also poppy and snappy. Skiers who value a well-rounded ski on the playful side of the spectrum will gravitate to Blade Optic 92.

Price: $549.95


AT A GLANCE


2023 Liberty Evolv 90 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

165, 172, 179, 186 cm

18.5 m at 179 cm

132 / 90 / 114 mm

1670 g at 172 cm

Silence, Carving, Smoothness


Overview:

Smooth as silk and ready to run, the Liberty Evolv 90 takes advantage of a thicker sidewall profile, bamboo in the core, and three vertical metal struts to make it so. The Evolv 90 is about as unique of a ski as it gets in this category, distancing itself from others with a quiet and supple ride. While it may not be as playful or versatile as other skis like Ripstick 88 or Captis, it’s quite sturdy and groomer-focused, allowing it to be mentioned in similar conversations as MX 88, Stormrider 88, and Scott Pure 90. There’s not a whole lot of rocker or taper to go along with this build, making it more of a carving specialist, but in that realm, there’s not a lot out there quite like it. The effective edge is quite long, and that contributes to the smooth feeling of the ski. This is what happens when a freeride-inspired company like Liberty go ahead and make an on-piste ski. You get a blend of attributes that you may not have expected. To this day, the Evolv 90 is one of the quietest and most predictable skis I’ve been on in this width.

Who it's For:

Skiers who still want a great ski, and also want to support a more independent ski brand. If you value silence underfoot, the Evolv 90 is a must-ski.

Price: $729.99


AT A GLANCE


2023 Kastle MX 88 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

159, 166, 173, 180, 187 cm

17.1 m at 173 cm

130 / 88 / 114 mm

1859 g at 173 cm

Grip, Energy, Precision


Overview:

As one of the skis in the Clydesdale category of this comparison, the Kastle MX 88 is a strong, albeit heavy, option for skiers who want a high-quality and ultra-precise ski for carving turns on groomers, mostly. This is more of a 90/10 split type of ski for on-piste versus off-piste activities. It remains largely the same as in years past, with the exception of a slightly stiffer pre-preg fiberglass laminate. This mainly just standardizes their skis a bit more, so there’s less variance and more precision. We found that it adds a bit more snap and pop to the end of the turn, and even sounds slightly different than it did in years past. While I would avoid moguls and trees for the most part on this ski, it does great in firm snow, softer groomers, and cuts effectively through crud and chop. It’s right there with Brahma, Kendo, and Enforcer as the meatiest skis of the group, so if you’re looking for a ski that is part SUV and part Racecar, then look no further than Kastle MX 88. There’s minimal to zero rocker and taper, resulting in a long and smooth effective edge. Shape-wise, it’s a lot more Evolv 90 than Enforcer 88, although the burliness puts it closer to Nordica than Liberty.

Who it's For:

Precision skiers looking for a pure and clean carve. You value quality and consistency in your skis and likely have some sort of racing background.

Price: $1,249.00


AT A GLANCE


2023 K2 Mindbender 89 Ti Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

164, 170, 176, 182, 188 cm

16.6 m at 182 cm

130 / 89 / 114 mm

1850 g at 176 cm

Turn-Finishing Ability, Grip, Fun


Overview:

The changes to this ski are good. In general, when a ski company tweaks an already successful model, it can cause some anxiety. Those fears were quelled in the first few turns on the Mindbender 89 Ti. With longer rocker, a shorter turn radius, full sidewall, and a more sophisticated titanal Y-Beam, the new K2 is a turnier, more comprehensive ski than the outgoing 90 Ti. It may lack a little bit of off-trail prowess, but more than makes up for it when it comes to carving turns. That shorter arc really makes the ski come around nicely, and the difference in rocker profile allows it to feel smoother at the same time. Stance 90 and Kendo 88 are right there with it in terms of corduroy-crushing potential, and you can stand on the edges just like you do on the traditionally stronger Kendo. They’ve definitely narrowed the gap between those models with this new 89, and we’re all for it.

Who it's For:

Skiers who spend most of their time on-trail and looking for clean corduroy. You value the shorter turn radius, and aren’t afraid to open it up a bit. There’s still some versatility here, so no real need to go wider or more freeridey.

Price: $699.95


AT A GLANCE


2023 Head Kore 87 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

156, 163, 170, 177, 184, 191 cm

16 m at 177 cm

130 / 87 / 110 mm

1638 g at 177 cm

Lightness, Stiffness, Reactivity


Overview:

With a new topsheet for 2023, the Head Kore 87 becomes a bit quieter and more durable than last year, and those are both very nice improvements. What remains is the absurd blend of stiff flex and light weight that we’ve talked about with Head Kore for years. As the narrowest of the Kore skis, the 87 is the quickest from edge to edge, utilizing the carbon laminates and karuba wood core to its benefit. It compares pretty darn well to the Atomic Maverick 88 in terms of light weight and stiff flex, but is a pretty far cry from heavier hitters like Enforcer and Brahma. There’s nothing really “supple” about the Kore 87, it does require either a heavier and more skilled pilot who can tip it on edge and bend it, or a less-aggressive skier who’s happy using shallower edge angles. Either of these skiers will be very happy on the reactive Kore 87, especially if they value quickness and maneuverability. Thanks to Head’s ability to build a unique ski, there’s not a whole lot of direct competition, and I think that’s how they like it.

Who it's For:

Not everyone. Heavier skiers will like it because it’s light but supportive. Lighter skiers will like it because it’s quick and agile. Lighter, but more skilled skiers may find it to be on the chatty side.

Price: $699.00


AT A GLANCE


2023 Fischer Ranger 90 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

170, 177, 184 cm

16 m at 170 cm

124 / 90 / 114 mm

1852 g at 177 cm

Versatility, Grip, Energy


Overview:

Like the Line Blade Optic 92, the Fischer Ranger 90 is a totally new ski on this list. They took the good parts from the Ranger 92 Ti and 94 FR and mashed them together in a slightly narrower package. With metal extending from the middle into the tips and tails, but not all the way, Ranger 90 is able to grip tightly, provide excellent energy and snap, all the while keeping the tips and tails unencumbered by metal. This keeps the playful personality of FR shining through while the grippy Ti character continues forward. It’s an awesome blend of attributes, and this will be very endearing to a huge swath of advanced skiers. Salomon Stance 90 feels pretty similar, as does K2 Mindbender 89 Ti in terms of clean carving and versatile personality. The Ranger 90 does not excel in any one particular area other than versatility, and that’s the whole point of this new ski from Fischer. There’s a bit more metal than you may expect, but for on-trail performance, that is certainly a good thing for skiers who value stability and dampness.

Who it's For:

Advanced skiers looking for the pinnacle of well-rounded performance in a ski. Much like the QST 92, anyone can ski it any day of the year.

Price: $699.99


AT A GLANCE


2023 Faction Prodigy 1 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

164, 171, 178, 184 cm

17 m at 178 cm

120 / 88 / 112 mm

1819 g at 178 cm

Freestyle, Quickness, Energy


Overview:

Yay! A Faction ski in a SkiEssentials.com comparison video! The Prodigy 1 fills a great need in the 88 mm category, functioning as both a park and an all-mountain ski. It’s got a fairly simple build with a poplar and ash wood core, but adds the twin tip shape to go along with high camber underfoot. When park-oriented skis don’t have additional material to make them strong, they usually add the camber to the mix and this makes it very energetic. For park performance, this allows for good carving off of lips and a predictable pop for takeoffs and landings. We’ve always been fans of this style of ski, and while not on the list anymore, it definitely reminds us of the Nordica Soul Rider 87. For this list, it’s a bit more freestyle than Captis, but slightly less so versus Revolt 90. As such, the Prodigy 1 strikes a nice balance between freestyle and all-mountain, allowing skiers to have the ability to choose the intended application to increase the overall enjoyment of the ski day.

Who it's For:

Fun-loving skiers who do not want to have to choose between park laps and all-mountain skiing. You love dipping into the trees just as much as you like launching huge airs.

Price: $449.00


AT A GLANCE


2023 Elan Ripstick 88 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

148, 156, 164, 172, 180, 188 cm

17 m at 180 cm

130 / 88 / 105 mm

1688 g at 180 cm

Rebound, Moguls, Trees


Overview:

If you haven’t skied a Ripstick of any type at this point, now’s the time. The Ripstick 88 is the narrowest of the model line, and is also the lightest and quickest. Elan uses carbon in a very effective manner as a company by placing carbon tubes that run alongside the inside of the sidewalls. This gives the ski a very unique feel and sound to go along with the flexible shovel. It’s easy to get into a turn, but when you keep it up at high-edge angles, it really starts to rip across the fall line. For something so light and quick, the carving performance is absolutely terrific. Weight-wise, it’s close to Maverick 88 and Kore 87, but in terms of overall feel and character, it’s a bit more Stormrider, and that’s kind of saying a lot for a carbon-infused ski. For moguls, trees, and agile turning, there’s really not a whole lot better out there than Ripstick 88. While the shaping is pretty similar to Enforcer 88, the overall feel couldn’t be more different, and that’s one of the interesting things about comparisons like this—it's incredible how two skis that occupy such similar spots can feel so dissimilar.

Who it's For:

Skiers looking for a lighter version of an Enforcer 88 or Brahma 88. If you value versatility and agility, you’ll love the all-mountain poise of the Ripstick 88.

Price: $649.99


AT A GLANCE


2023 Dynastar M-Pro 90 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

162, 170, 178, 186 cm

18 m

120 / 90 / 110 mm

1763 g at 178 cm

Soft snow, Hard snow, Tail Strength


Overview:

With a bit of a graphics update for 2023, the Dynastar M-Pro 90 remains a strong ski with a slightly different approach to the shovel. It’s a bit more like the Stormrider in this regard, with longer and more flexible shovels while the rest of the ski is all business. There’s a good amount of rocker in the shovel, and this makes the M-Pro 90 one of the better pure floaters, but there’s also a very smooth and minimal taper shape, which allows the pilot to ease into turns rather than getting yanked into them like some other skis like Evolv 90 or MX 88. The tips of the ski are more like the DPS while the tail is decidedly more Maverick. As such, the kick at the end of the carve is quite robust, giving advanced and expert skiers the ability to rip around the mountain on the groomers, as well as having fun-loving and playful performance in softer snow, trees, and moguls. With a slightly longer turn shape coming out of the shovels, the M-Pro 90 is a bit of an outlier in terms of shape and profile, providing an interesting and unique blend of attributes and qualities.

Who it's For:

Advanced and expert skiers who are looking for a sharp-turning ski that doesn’t flake out when it comes to off-piste adventures. Normally you’d have to choose between one or the other, but the Dynastar makes it easy for you to have it all.

Price: $649.95


AT A GLANCE


2023 DPS Pagoda Piste 90 RP Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

152, 157, 165, 171, 179, 184 cm

15 m

118 / 90 / 106 mm

1826 g at 179 cm

Flotation, Short Turns, Ease of Use


Overview:

With the RP shaping that DPS provides, skiers get a short-turning 90-mm underfoot ski that is likey one of the better floaters of the group. Bent 90 and Blade Optic 92 give it a run for its money in the flotation department, but DPS’s use of carbon in the build makes it a strong carver as well. Like we see with Head’s use of carbon in Kore 87, DPS uses a similar philosophy to create a unique blend of stiff flex and light weight. The main difference here is the dramatic taper shape and rocker profile that makes the DPS float up and over softer snow while keeping the carved turn firmly intact. At 15-meters for the turn radius, this is a tight turner for sure, with speed demons and longer-turn fans may wanting to look elsewhere. But for fans of flotation and short turns with a high-level of quality, the DPS Pagoda Piste 90 RP is very effective when combining those attributes.

Who it's For:

Short-turning enthusiasts. You love a cleanly-carved arc while not wanting to give up anything when it comes to deep snow.

Price: $1,449.00


AT A GLANCE


2023 Blizzard Brahma 88 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

165, 171, 177, 183, 189 cm

16 m at 177 cm

128 / 88 / 110 mm

2112 g at 177 cm

Strength, Power, Stability


Overview:

My big takeaway from the Brahma 88 is that it’s one of the only skis on the market today that I would not select in its longest length. Normally, I’m pushing for more and more cm’s out of most skis, but I balk at the 189 Brahma 88. That said, when you get it down to the 183, this thing totally and completely rips the $h1t out of the mountain. It is an absolute destroyer of corduroy and about as unflinching of a ski as there is today. I’ll ski it in the moguls and trees if I have to, but for the most part, this ski is best used as a front side option at higher speeds. It’s stiff, strong, and burly, and if you don’t have the requisite skills to effectively pilot it, you better be big. The funny part about it is that it has a pretty tight turn radius, which amplifies the carving nature of the ski. The 177 produces a 16-meter arc which is on the shorter side of the list, so even with all the bluster and braggadocio, the Brahma 88 is still pretty darn agile.

Who it's For:

Former racers and larger skiers who are not afraid of a heavy and/or aggressive ski. You are searching for the ultimate in stability and power and have a good dental plan because there’s a lot of teeth-clenching going on with these skis.

Price: $699.95


AT A GLANCE


2023 Black Crows Captis Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

172.1, 178.4, 184.3 cm

18 m at 178.4 cm

128 / 90 / 114 mm

1704 g at 178 cm

Freestyle, Moguls, Trees


Overview:

The Captis becomes slightly more twin-tippy for 2023, but the overall concept remains the same. With an even and snappy flex, the Captis blurs the line between freestyle and all-mountain in a very effective and positive manner. They call it more incisive yet more playful, and I’m not sure how they came up with that, but at the end of the day, it’s still one of the most fun and playful skis on this list. In fact, it’s one of the only skis that I’d put up against by Bent 90 in the bumps and trees. It has slightly more energy and pop than the Atomic, but isn’t quite as park-oriented as Prodigy or Revolt. It’s actually more like the Blade Optic, just with less rocker in the tips and tails. For bumps, woods, park, and groomers, the Captis is one of the most versatile skis, and the fact that it has no metal makes it all the more interesting. It’s not a feather, either, even though it’s super-quick, and that adds to the overall positive experience that skiers have on the Captis.

Who it's For:

Playful skiers who view the mountain as their playground. You love hitting jumps and bumps and skiing through trees. You also appreciate an energetic and poppy ski on the groomers for all-mountain performance.

Price: $649.95


AT A GLANCE


2023 Atomic Bent 90 Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

157, 166, 175, 184 cm

19 m at 175 cm

119 / 90 / 109 mm

1686 g at 184 cm

Moguls, Trees, Park


Overview:

Built just like the ubiquitous Bent 100 but narrower, the Bent 90 is a new width that takes playful skiing to the next level. Much like the Captis, the Bent 90 is phenomenal in the bumps and trees, while also being a very effective park and freestyle choice for fun-loving skiers. For my money, the Bent 90 is one of the best tree skis on the market today, and as an owner of both the 90 and the 100, the only difference is the amount of snow underfoot. If there’s no fresh snow, the 90 is amazing. Even when it does get deep, the HRZN tech in the tips and tails make the 90 one of the best floaters of this comparison. My only complaint is that it tops out in the 184 while the 100 goes to the 188. Other than that, this is one perfect ski for all-mountain skiing for a huge range of skiers. It’s not the stiffest, so if you’re looking for Brahma-like response, you know where to look, but if flexibility is on your radar, this ski will fit the bill. It’s very similar to the Faction in that sense, as well as the Blade Optic.

Who it's For:

Park skiers looking for an all-mountain ski. Conversely, all-mountain skiers looking for a park ski. Either way is correct.

Price: $499.95


AT A GLANCE


2023 Atomic Maverick 88 Ti Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

161, 169, 176, 184 cm

18.2 m at 176 cm

124.5 / 88 / 109.5 mm

1694 g at 176 cm

Light weight, Strong Tail, Quickness


Overview:

Similar to the Head Kore 87, the Maverick 88 Ti provides an impressive amount of power for the weight. They do this with a thinner core overall and two thin sheets of metal. As such, the Maverick 88 Ti is quite light and quick, and for skiers who don’t want to work too hard, but also want something that doesn’t wear them down, skis like the Maverick 88 definitely come in handy. The Kore is a good comparison in terms of blending stiff flex and light weight, while the Kastle is a good one for tail shape and a lighter shovel. The Hollowtech of the Kastle lines up well against the HRZN tech in the tip of the Maverick, both providing a more friendly shovel that allows for better soft snow performance. There’s more tail in the Atomic, though, so it does like to have a skilled pilot that can carve a clean turn from front to back. I’d almost go so far as to say you can move the mount point back one or two centimeters in order to give the ski more of a freeride flair.

Who it's For:

Advanced and expert skiers who are looking for stiffness but not heft. Precision is at the top of your list as well in terms of attributes.

Price: $599.95


AT A GLANCE


2023 Armada Declivity 92 Ti Skis



AVAILABLE SIZES

TURN RADIUS

SIDECUT

WEIGHT

STRENGTHS

164, 172, 180, 188 cm

17.5 m at 180 cm

132 / 92 / 118 mm

1868 g at 180 cm

Silence, Grip, Flotation


Overview:

The Declivity gets a graphics recharge for 2023, but still remains the overlooked silent assassin that it’s always been. While Armada is better known for their freestyle and freeride skis, the Declivity 92 Ti turns that upside down by providing one of the coolest carvers on the planet. Their use of titanal allows for excellent articulation and smoothness throughout the turn. I’d stack it up against the Stockli Stormrider 88 in terms of silent and smooth nature any day of the week. These things are deadly quiet, and feel like there’s nothing on your feet. That is a good thing if you’re looking for an intuitive ski that blends ease of use and a high-performance ceiling. Salomon Stance also comes to mind in terms of a shaping relative, and I’d put them neck and neck in terms of overall performance and application, the Declivity is just a bit snappier. For off-trail purposes, the taper of the shovel makes it a decent floater, so for a wider-bodied ski on this list it definitely has good soft-snow prowess. Additionally, that shovel is not soft, so it will definitely stand up to rigorous and aggressive skiing.

Who it's For:

Aggressive skiers looking for the wider all-mountain range. You value precision and silence but still want to keep things fun and exciting out there.

Price: $699.95


Written by Bob St.Pierre on 9/08/22

6 thoughts on “2023 Ski Comparisons: Men's 90 mm All Mountain Ski Guide

  1. Hi, looking for my new skis for this season within this population.

    I typically only get 1 week a year in Europe ( live in uk so it’s not just a drive to the slopes!)

    I am 170cm, 95kg and ski to an reasonably advanced level for the time I get on snow.

    Probably 80% frontside, I am drawn to the Maverick 88Ti but not sure whether I’d be better on the kendo or Brahma?

    Any recommendations (including length/suggested binding) would be appreciated

    1. Hi Paul!
      The weight will likely be the determining factor for you, in that the Maverick is considerably lighter than the other two. If you're looking for a strong performing ski with a lighter weight, then I'd lean that way. It's easier to turn and maneuver, as well as being lighter on the legs and knees. For how much time you ski, I'd think that'd be a positive. On the other hand, the Kendo and Brahma are burlier skis that require more input and power on your part. Sure, you're getting better top-end performance, but in reality, how much of the time is that needed or necessary? If you go Maverick, which I think is a great idea, I'd go with the 169 and we pair them with Tyrolia Attack 14 bindings. Have fun!
      https://www.skiessentials.com/2023-atomic-maverick-88-ti-skis.html
      SE

  2. I’m from Australia and I’m looking for a new ‘does everything’ one ski quiver that I can take to varied places - here in Australia, Canada and US, Japan and Europe.
    I currently own 4 year old Rustler 9s and I love them. They do almost everything I want. Amazingly they’re great in powder up to about a foot. But since my skiing has progressed they are now just a bit short for me. The next size up may be too much given 8cm is a big jump? (I’m on the 164s as I’m only 5’7 and about 160 pounds).
    I’m looking for something similar to the current Rustlers but with a bit longer effective edge. I want the playfulness but don’t need twin tips.
    I’m considering the Black Crows Serpo but I’m concerned about the 20m turn radius. Will I be able to easy do short turns or slide the tails easily like I can in the Rustlers?
    Other options are QST 92 but I’m concerned they won’t carve as well because of the lack of metal? Or Ranger 92ti?
    Thanks in advance for your thoughts.

    1. If you're looking for longer effective edge, I don't think Ranger or QST will do the trick. The Serpo is a much better choice. While not as loose in the tail as the Rustler, I'd still say they are looser than more rugged skis in that range like Enforcer 94. Elan Ripstick 96 and Rossignol Sender 94 Ti should also be on the list as more directional, but still playful, skis in that range. Have fun!
      SE

  3. Hi! I’m in the market for new skis after having spent the last 20 years snowboarding. I’m certified as a level 3 Alpine instructor but have spent little time on skis until late last season. I’m about 6’ and 210 lbs. and ski a combination of east coast (Whiteface, Stowe, Jay, Killington) and Rocky Mountain (Sun Valley, Jackson, Big Sky, Bridger Bowl). I’m leaning toward the Kendos in 184, but also like some of the characteristics of the 179 Enforcer, the 184 Ranger, 184 M-Pro 90s. We get off the groomers almost everyday so having a ski that is versatile enough to handle broken powder, bumps and trees is important. Equally our east coast skiing puts a premium on edge grip on occasion! Yes, I do want it all! Any thoughts on skis and lengths I am leaning toward?

    1. HI Lee!
      When you're talking about handling it all, and then adding grip to the mix, I think the discussion begins and ends with Enforcer 88. It's got the freeride shape of the wider skis in the line but in a narrower shape that makes it grippy and carvy. For more of an off-trail ski, my second choice would be the Dynastar. I'd say the 179 Enforcer 88 is a solid choice. have fun!
      SE

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.