Expert Review: 2024 K2 Mindbender 90C Skis [with Video]Published on 08/28/2023 · 6 min readSkiing Experts Ian Hamilton and Luke Hinz tested the 2024 K2 Mindbender 90C skis in the carving, freestyle, and freeride categories.
Curated Skiing Experts Ian Hamilton and Luke Hinz got their hands on the 2024 K2 Mindbender 90C this spring. Check out how it performed in the carving, freestyle, and freeride categories, but consider the fact that each and every skier is different; if you have any questions about the K2 Mindbender 90C or need recommendations on which ski would be best for you, reach out to a Skiing Expert here on Curated.
Before we get started, it's worth noting that Curated Experts are not sponsored by any brands. All of these reviews are completely unbiased.
What does K2 claim about this ski? [Ian] K2 markets the Mindbender 90C as an intermediate level ski that's light, good on groomers, and easy to ski. It’s wide enough to get off trail a little bit, too.
[Luke] The Mindbender 90C is obviously a part of K2's Mindbender collection; but, what makes it different is that other Mindbenders have a sheet of titanal metal in them to stiffen the ski and this ski goes without that and uses carbon instead. So typically metal stiffens the ski, but it does make the ski heavier, which can be really hard on some people's legs. Carbon also stiffens the ski, but it's a much lighter material than metal. So, K2 markets this as an all-mountain ski for lighter skiers who don’t need a ski with metal in it.
What is your overall impression of the ski? [Ian] I really like it! It's light with the carbon in it versus the titanal of the “Ti” Mindbenders. Overall, it's a fun, cool looking, high quality ski that has a really nice top sheet feel.
[Luke] It works really well for what K2 claims, actually. Surprisingly, I had a lot of fun on these skis even though I'm actually a bigger skier (I'm about 200 pounds). The carbon in the ski gives it some stiffness and solid edge grip but does keep the ski lighter. They're not a super aggressive ski, but they're very confidence inspiring.
How does the ski turn? [Ian] I felt it was great on the groomers and was quick edge to edge. It's definitely a more groomer focused ski at 90 underfoot.
[Luke] I was super impressed in how they handled. I like that it's really well suited towards medium radius turns. It's not going to be executing super high speed GS and Super G turns, but it's very maneuverable and you can be comfortable opening up into those medium radius turns.
What is the edge hold like? [Luke] They felt stiff enough for me. I would say these are medium to slightly stiffer, maybe like a seven out of ten in the stiffness factor. But, they had great edge grip. They didn't quite have the edge grip of the Mindbender with metal in it. But, again, for a lighter skier I think these would be more than apt and they'd be a lot less effort on your legs.
What about dampness? Any chatter in the skis? [Luke] There wasn't a ton of chatter on these, which I was really surprised by. Sometimes carbon skis can be lacking compared to metal skis when it comes to edge grip and higher speeds. But, these felt really solid and very stable. I could carve fluidly through the turn.
How is its energy/acceleration? [Luke] There wasn't a ton of energy or acceleration in these skis, but they felt very stable. I felt confident on them, which I really liked.
How is it for freestyle skiing? [Ian] It's definitely not a park focused ski.
[Luke] They're not really designed to be a park ski
Could you speak about playfulness and pop? [Luke] I wouldn't call this the most playful ski. But, they do stay fluid and have medium playfulness just because of that lack of metal. It keeps the ski lighter, more nimble, and a little bit easier to maneuver.
Is it good for skiing switch? [Ian] The Mindbender 90C does have a partial twin tip which is nice so you don’t catch your tails and so you can ski switch on it a little bit.
[Luke] There's a little bit of rocker in these skis but there's definitely not a full twin tip. These aren't really made for skiing switch.
How is it in powder? [Ian] It has a little bit of early rise in the tips here. There was a little bit of fresh snow this morning, and it did pretty well. It pivoted pretty decently and had a little bit of float from those noses.
[Luke] I was lucky enough to take these off piste and in some powder, too. I was actually super impressed with how they handled the powder. They almost had this like Goldilocks suppleness to them where they were stiff enough that I could control them but still soft enough in the tip and tail that they were easy to steer. They were a lot of fun in soft snow.
How is it in uneven terrain and chunder? [Luke] I would say the Mindbender 90C is adequate in crud and chunder. There are going to be better skis out there, like something with metal in it that’s stiffer, but for lacking metal they could cut through most of that stuff. If you get into real variable snow, they could get knocked around a little bit, so that’s something to keep in mind.
How is it skiing in the trees? How is its maneuverability? [Luke] I like how they performed in trees, too. Again, because of that lighter construction, they were a lot easier for me to flick around in and maneuver through tight spots.
What terrain is this ski good for? [Ian] It's a good hardpack ski. It does well on moguls, groomers, and even a little bit of off trail.
[Luke] This is a ski that I would mainly use for on piste skiing. But, like I said, it can handle powder fairly well which is a huge plus. These are skis I would reach for in between storms when I'm mainly sticking to on trail skiing.
Who would you recommend these skis to? [Ian] I think it's a great advancing beginner through advancing intermediate ski. I think a lot of people will like it - it's a pretty middle of the line, fun ski to be on,
[Luke] Anyone from an ambitious lower intermediate up to an advanced skier could have a lot of fun on these. If you want a stable, confident yet forgiving, intermediate to advanced ski that’s lighter and not as stiff, this is a great option at a really affordable price.
Who should avoid these skis, there are better options out there for them? [Luke] I wouldn't put a true beginner skier on these. They're just a little bit more advanced than that. At the other end of the spectrum, I wouldn't put an expert skier on these. They could definitely overpower the ski and it wouldn't quite do what they want them to do, especially if you’re skiing at really high speeds these are going to be a little lacking. Also, with a 90 millimeter waist, they're not a true powder ski. If that's what you're looking for, there are better options.
Skis work differently for different types of skiers. If you are wondering whether the Mindbender 90C is the right ski for you, chat with Ian, Luke, or any other Skiing Experts here on Curated, and they’ll put together free, personalized ski recommendations on the best skis for your needs.