Expert Review: 2023 Line Blade Optic 104 [with Video]

Ski Experts Brandon and Hayden tested the 2023 Line Blade Optic 104 skis on carving, freestyle, and freeride at Powder Mountain in Utah.

Curated Ski Expert Brandon Westburg skiing on the 2023 Line Blade Optic 104 skis at Powder Mountain

Curated Ski Experts Hayden and Brandon tested the Line Blade Optic 104 at Powder Mountain in Utah this spring. Check out how it performed in the carving, freestyle, and freeride categories. Chat with Hayden, Brandon, or another Ski Expert here on Curated to see if the Optic 104 is the right ski for your needs and to receive free, personalized recommendations.

Note that Curated Experts are not sponsored and have no ties to any particular brand, so these are honest and unbiased opinions of the skis.

Brand Claims

What does the brand claim about this ski? [Brandon] Line claims that the Blade Optic 104 is their most versatile ski in the Blade Optic collection. It does have a lot of metal in the ski, and it's great for big-mountain, all-mountain and anything in between.

Overall Impression

What was your overall impression of the ski? [Hayden] This one was so fun. I was super excited to get out on it.

What's really cool, and what I like about Line skis, is that all their skis are kind of in between those cookie-cutter categories, especially this one. It's a metal ski, but there's not a lot of metal freeride skis out there right now. That's what they're trying, and they're onto something with this one.

[Brandon] My overall impression of the Line Blade Optic 104 is that it was extremely fun to ski, and Line is definitely right. This is an extremely versatile ski. I got to take it on a variety of terrain today anywhere from groomers to cliffs, to spinning 360s, to tree lines. This ski really held up and was extremely fun in all the conditions that I was able to ride it in.

How does the shape of the ski affect the way it rides? [Hayden] The shape of the ski changes underfoot, which gives it that burly ski feeling underfoot where you want it. The tip is much more playful. My personal favorite ski shape is rocker, camber, rocker, which is exactly what these are. The camber underfoot lets you grip and rip.

It has Line’s Gas Pedal Metal. A lot of skis just have a metal sheet with a specific shape, and Line calls their metal shape Gas Pedal Metal. It's not going to be the stiffest ski like a lot of skis with metal. It's consistent throughout the whole ski.

Carving

How well does the ski carve? [Hayden] As far as carving and edge hold, it had a little bit of chatter when we got it at speeds, but nothing that's going to be a deal breaker or scary. It was there for me when I wanted it. We threw the brakes on it, and it held up.

When you're in that turn, you can feel these different zones of the ski load up. That was really unique, and that's what stood out to me with the Blade Optic.

[Brandon] The Line Blade Optic 104 was extremely fun to carve on groomers. This is a stiff ski because there's some metal in the core, but it was playful, and fun as well. I had an awesome time carving. It was pretty quick edge to edge, and I didn't really experience any chatter on any steeper terrain or technical terrain or chopped up snow. Overall it was a really fun experience on the groomers.

How does the skis feel at high speeds? [Hayden] The Line Blade Optic 104 at speed was great. There was a little bit of chatter, but nothing that's going to terrify you. It performed better than other skis out there that just aren't really designed to get up to those speeds.

If you just like skiing groomers, the Blade Optic could be the one ski that'll get you off the trail. Because, if you were to pop off the groomers, the Blade Optic 104 is going to be there for you. It has just enough underfoot if you get into some soft stuff, and the early rise is really cool too, because it keeps the ski above the snow. It's a great all mountain ski.

[Brandon] At top speed, the ski holds up quite well. There is a touch of chatter in the tip when at top speed, but you should be confident riding this at pretty much any speed. If you're skiing longer, faster turns, the ski will hold up. It has great edge hold, and I think you'll really enjoy it. We got to ski at a variety of speeds today, and we did ramp it up to speed fairly quickly. It did a great job, and you should be controlled and comfortable at most any speed on this ski.

Does the ski hold an edge well? [Brandon] The Line Blade Optic 104 has really great edge hold. Line's unique titanal design is called Gas Pedal Metal, which incorporates a lot of metal towards the edge of the ski. That gives it that edge hold, and you shouldn't experience much chatter at all underfoot when skiing on groomers or harder snow.

Does it feel damp underfoot or have a tendency to chatter? [Brandon] Again, because of the gas pedal metal, Line's unique titanal design in the ski, it was very damp, and I didn't experience much chatter at all. I got to ride it on a variety of terrain, and I felt very confident that the edge would hold in most conditions.

Freestyle

Can you speak to the ski’s playfulness and pop? [Hayden] The Line Blade Optic 104 was a playful ski, which you usually don’t see in skis with metal in them. What Line did here with the shape of the metal is really nice.

When you throw back on it and you try to load the ski, you definitely feel it. They are poppy. The ski is definitely designed for a freerider. If you're jumping, you're doing flips, you're airing, you're spinning, you're hiking lines, you're skiing down them fast, this is definitely a ski to consider.

[Brandon] I thought this ski was extremely playful. There is a bit of metal towards the edge, but it had a lot of pop and it was super fun. We did pop around and hit some larger hits as well as some smaller ones today and caught a lot of air. In addition to being playful and fun, it also is stable on most all landings. Overall, it's a pretty well rounded and versatile ski that's fun, and freestyle lovers will eat it up.

Do they feel stable on landings? [Hayden] We were fortunate enough to find some sweet jumps at Powder Mountain. Nothing crazy, but the Blade Optic 104 held its own. We even found some little rock jibs, but both Brandon and I were super stoked on how it performed.

it's a great ski, Line designed this specifically for freeriders, so in that free ride category, you've got jumps, airs, maybe straight lining down the landing or something, but the ski will be there for you.

How does the ski feel riding switch? [Hayden] The Line Blade Optic 104, for riding switch, is awesome. It has early rise in both the tip and tail where a lot of metal freeride skis don't have early rise in the tail. You don't need it per se, but if you're landing in any kind of soft snow or powder and you don't have that, if your weight is not fully forward, you are going to go back. These will give you the confidence to both ride, carve and land switch.

[Brandon] There was a full twin tip on this ski. We were actually able to ride it switch very confidently.

Freeride

Are the skis maneuverable in the trees? [Hayden] It has a 19 meter turn radius, so it's not the tightest ski, but with the Gas Pedal Metal paired with the wood core, it's not as heavy as other metal core skis. So, there's not a lot of swing weight in the tip and tail, which helps out that turn radius and it makes them kind of quick to turn.

As far as skiing moguls or in the trees, this may not be the best ski, but it can do it. If you're the type of rider that loves a little bit of everything, consider this one. If you're a strict tree mogul only, this might not be the ski for you.

[Brandon] It was surprisingly nimble in the trees. This ski is not quite as heavy as others in its class at the 104 width, and it did go edge to edge quite quickly. We skied some tighter terrain and caught a little bit of air in the trees too. It was fun, responsive, quick edge to edge, and you should feel confident riding this ski in any sort of trees or technical terrain.

How do you think the ski would feel in powder? [Hayden] Being only a 104 waist, it's not the biggest ski, but I think it would hold its own. That early rise definitely helps keep the ski on top of the snow. Other skis in its category around the 104 waist width that don't have as much rise in the tip and tail would not be able to hang with this ski, but we were able to ride it in some kind of soft, slushy, mashed potato snow. And if it can do well in that, it would definitely do alright in powder.

[Brandon] The Line Blade Optic 104 would be a great performer in powder. Looking at the rocker pattern up towards the tip, there's a significant amount of rocker. Unfortunately, I didn't get to ride any powder in this ski today. I wish I did, but the rocker profile along with how flexible and playful it is, gives me great confidence that this ski would do awesome in any sort of powder terrain.

How does it handle chop and chunder? [Brandon] We got to ski a variety of terrain today, including some uneven terrain, chunder, and some hardpack. It held up quite well. As mentioned, there was a little bit of chatter where the metal and the ski stops towards the tip, but we had a fun time plowing through snow and going through chunder. This ski is certainly capable of it, and you should feel confident and stable in most all situations.

What conditions is the ski best suited for? [Brandon] The line blade optic 104 is great for most all terrain in the resort, anywhere from powder, groomers, rollers, catching air, or in the trees. This ski did it all today, and we had a really fun time out there. There's not much terrain that the line blade optic wouldn't be capable of. It should feel extremely confident on most all snow days in any sort of terrain on the resort.

Is there a specific location where you would bring this ski on a trip? [Hayden] I would consider maybe taking this up to Alaska if there wasn't going to be a big storm or anything. But other than that, it’s a great option for that ski that can handle a little of everything. If you get a surprise powder day on your ski trip, then you're not going to be disappointed.

[Brandon] I think that the line blade optic 104 is great for most all Western resorts. I can see this ski being fun on the East Coast as well. But, the purpose of this ski is mostly an all mountain or big mountain ski, which you don't see a ton of on the east coast. I think this ski would thrive a bit better on the west coast, but certainly would be a great option for the east coast when it does snow or if you're big tree skier or love skiing variable terrain.

Who would you recommend this ski to? [Hayden] The skier that's going to excel on these is intermediate to advanced free riders that are looking to jump, jib, and go all over the mountain. If you’re not just on groomers, and you have your parallel turns down, then this ski is definitely a ski to consider.

[Brandon] I would feel confident recommending this ski to most intermediate all mountain skiers all the way up to advanced big mountain skiers. I would feel confident recommending it to intermediate all mountain skiers because it doesn't take a ton of work to move edge to edge or to use this ski properly. I would recommend it to the more advanced big mountain skiers because it's a fun ski in any sort of powder conditions. And again, is stable and supportive for those harder-charging guys. It’s definitely a great ski for most intermediate to advanced skiers.

Who would you not recommend this ski to? [Hayden] This is a freeride ski. It isn't going to be for beginners that are still learning the basics.

[Brandon] I would not recommend the line blade optic 104 for any beginner skiers or anyone who skis strictly groomers. It skis really well on the groomers, but I think its purpose is more all mountain and getting into those big mountain lines.

Beginners, I wouldn't feel confident recommending this to you because a bit too much underfoot. If you're looking to get into all mountain skiing, there are certainly better options out there that are a bit more narrow than this ski.

Remember that everyone’s ski style is unique, and skis work differently for different types of skiers. Reach out to Hayden, Brandon, or any other Ski Expert here on Curated to find out more about the Line Blade Optic 104 and get free, personalized advice on the perfect ski for you.

Selling Line on Curated.com
Line Blade Optic 104 Skis · 2023
$749.95
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Written By
I am a passionate east coast skier who loves skiing no matter what. Rain, sleet, snow, sun, I'm still having fun! I hop on skis for as many days possible each season. (205 days for 22' season!) Currently, I am an avid freestyle skier and Level 200 Certified Freeski coach. I work with 20 skiers all w...
I grew up in Alaska loving the outdoors. I became hooked on skiing at a very young age and haven't looked back. I enjoy skiing deep pillows in the backcountry and enjoying the terrain parks. I am always pushing myself to progress. I love meeting new people and am always the most stoked person in the...

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