BEST FOR: All-mountain riders who don’t shy from hardpack.
THE TEST: The Eco Genetics’ tried-and-true profile (rocker underfoot, camber outside the bindings) and seven wavy contact points (called Magne-Traction) made our testers basically fearless. They took to slaloming down anything—icy double black diamonds, powdery tree runs, low-angle groomers—at top speed because the board held an edge so well. “We should ride boards with Magne-Traction last: it’s not fair to the others,” said one. The Eco Genetics’ sustainably harvested bamboo, balsa, and aspen core made it exceptionally poppy. But the lack of a wraparound edge had testers questioning its durability.
THE VERDICT: Experts milked the most performance out of this board, but its excellent edge hold made intermediates better, too.
WHAT'S WITH THE WAVY EDGES? Lightly run your finger along the edge of many snowboards these days and you'll notice it's not straight. That's because these boards have what's known as serrated edge or Magne-Traction, as the inventors of the technology, Mervin Manufacturing—the maker of Gnu and Lib Tech snowboards—dubbed it. The reason for the waves is to take the squirrelliness out of rockered boards: those wide points in the wave give you more stability and edge hold when you're ripping around. You'll find serrated edges on the Jones, Gnu, and Arbor boards.