Expert Review: Salomon STH2 MNC 16 Ski Bindings · 2022

This review is my honest opinion of the bindings which I purchased with my own money in December of 2021.

Photo courtesy of Jack Wise

Photo courtesy of Jack Wise

Published on

About this Review: This review is my honest opinion of the bindings which I purchased with my own money in December of 2021.

My take

The Salomon STH2 MNC 16 binding is a solid choice for advanced and expert-level skiers who demand perfect performance with reliable retention and release. With the new version, the toe piece has a sliding AFD and adjustable toe height for compatibility with nearly any boot on the market, whether touring or standard alpine.

The STH binding series has been around for decades. It’s been improved over those years, and the latest iteration is the most solid and reliable version yet.

About the gear

  • Model: 2022 Salomon STH2 MNC 16

About me

  • Height: 6’
  • Weight: 160lb
  • Preferred DIN range: 11
  • Experience: 30 years

Test conditions

  • When I bought these: December of 2021
  • Days tested: 20
  • Boots: Roxa R3 130 TI
  • Boot Size: 27
  • Skis Salomon QST Blank 194
  • Where I’ve used it: Utah, Idaho, Montana
  • Terrain: Inbounds skiing, groomers, glades, trees, chutes, and cliffs.

How they perform

Durability
4/5
Power Transfer
5/5
Release Reliability
5/5
Versatility
4/5

What I was looking for

When I got my new QST Blanks from Salomon, I couldn’t find any Look Pivot 15 bindings in stock, so I wanted the next best thing. I needed something that had a high DIN range and reliable track record that could drive my new big skis. I also needed something that would give me peace of mind and confidence since I like to ski dangerously.

Why I chose this gear

Salomon has made the STH binding for years, and the updated STH2 MNC is more consistent in its performance. The newest version has the MNC (multi-norm certified) toe plate so that it can accept any boot.

My first choice for a resort-specific binding has been the Look Pivot 15 since it has the most elastic travel, lowest rise, and complete metal construction. The STH2 MNC 16 is nearly as good for considerably less money.

The Salomon STH2 MNC Bindings mounted to a pair of white skis.

Photo courtesy of Jack Wise

What I love about it

  • Release Reliability: The added sliding AFD plate in the toe of the STH2 MNC 16 binding helps with lateral release and accommodates multiple types of boot soles. The higher DIN range is perfect for larger and more aggressive skiers.
  • Downhill Performance: The power transmission from the STH2 MNC 16 binding is great, and the connection to both boot and ski is super solid. These bindings are designed to drive the biggest skis at the highest speeds off the biggest drops.
  • Power Transfer: The STH2 MNC toe piece is the best toe piece on the market. It’s adjustable for various boot heights and has a large interface with the boot to hold solidly, and the wide track and mounting platforms sit low enough for a responsive, snappy feel on the ski.
  • Other: Due to the popularity of the binding and slow inventory, the 115mm brake was not available for purchase. Having some experience with other Salomon bindings, I knew they had a wider extension than other bindings, so I went with the 100mm. If you notice in these photos, the 100mm brake has no trouble reaching around the 112mm width of the QST Blank, and they weren’t stretched. It’s a little tough to get the skis apart, but that’s the nature of the toothy brakes on Salomon bindings, which do a great job stopping a runaway ski.

Issues I’ve encountered

  • Uphill Performance: This is a resort binding, so it doesn’t walk. However, for those who are looking to hike a bit, keep in mind that the weight of this binding is fairly hefty.
  • Durability: The STH2 MNC is a solid choice, but when compared to an all-metal binding like the Look Pivot 15, it just won’t hold up. Compared to other bindings from Tyrolia or Marker, however, the STH2 MNC is about as durable as I can get, and it has metal in all the important places to keep it strong.
  • Weight: I can’t help but feel like the binding would be only slightly heavier if it had a full metal construction. The weight is fairly heavy, though, and I’ll feel it if I shoulder the skis on a ridge hike or across a long parking lot.

Favorite moment with this gear

When I got my new STH2 16 bindings for my new QST Blanks, I chuckled at how well they match. The red metal on the bindings and the blue to red fade on the ski bases look so good together. It was really the only choice if I wanted a cohesive “sponsored” look. Riding the Lightning Ridge snowcat at Powder Mountain, I got tons of compliments on the matching, but what I really enjoyed was how much easier they were to get into and out of. Having used Look Pivots for all my resort riding going on 15 years now, I appreciated how there was no fuss with the heel piece swiveling or a boot toe not quite lined up with the toe wings of the binding. Also, they have an easy exit without having the heel piece pop back up the way the Pivot bindings do.

Value for the money vs. other options

For the price, there’s no better binding on the market. The STH2 MNC 16 has that high DIN value and metal in the construction that aggressive skiers need. For skiers who don’t care for the finicky (albeit reliable) heel piece in the Look Pivot or the hard stomp it takes to get into a Marker; the STH2 MNC is an excellent choice.

Final verdict

The STH2 MNC 16 is the only high DIN binding available that can accommodate any kind of ski boot sole. This binding will last for years and stay reliable for hot laps, big drops, and general abuse that big mountain freeride skiers put their equipment through. The main advantage I get with the STH2 MNC binding is the added functionality of the adjustable toe height and a good amount of elastic travel, so I don’t have to worry about a pre-release.

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Salomon STH2 MNC 16 Ski Bindings · 2022
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I am a passionate ski nerd. My brain is an encyclopedia of ski product knowledge. Using that knowledge base to help others find the same enjoyment and love for skiing is an intrinsic reward that has been fundamental in my career and personal ambitions. I love skiing all kinds of snow and traveling t...

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