Niche Theme 2018 Review
The Niche Theme is mostly camber, medium flexing freestyle board that is pretty fun to ride.
Features of the Niche Theme 2018
- Camber Dominant Hybrid
Pretty similar to a regular camber profile, though it is a bit flatter between the bindings. It has solid pop, is stable at speed and has good edge hold.
- Medium Flex
Right in the middle of the flex range, it is solid enough to handle fast riding, but still won’t need a huge effort to press and butter the board.
- True Twin
Like most freestyle board, it is a symmetrical shape, so riding it switch is going to be just the same as riding it in the regular direction.
- Twin Flex
The flex of the board is symmetrical as well as the shape, so it will flex exactly the same in both the regular and switch directions.
- 2X Traction Bumps
The edges of the board extend out under your feet a little bit, which helps to give the board extra grip, and helps a lot when the snow is hard or icy.
- Profiled Tip & Tail
The core of the board is milled (reduced) at the tip and the tail of the board. It helps to reduce the swing weight (so it is easier to spin), and makes it a bit easier to press.
- Recyclamine Resin System
Basically the resin has very similar properties to regular resin – strength, flexibilty, toughness in cold temperatures – only it is fully recyclable.
- Basalt Stringers
They have similar properties to carbon fiber, which adds pop to the board, and dampens vibration for fast riding, but is more environmentally friendly.
- Sintered Base
The base is hard and fast, and does a good job at soaking up wax.
- Digi-Print Topsheet
The graphics on the topsheet are digitally printed directly on to the board.
- Water-Based Inks
They use non-toxic, solvent-free uv-based inks for printing the graphics on the boards.
- Sustainable Wood Core
The cores come from sustainable sources, which means that they are replaced by new trees.
- Flip Flop Base
Depending on the board, the base colors might be reversed so that there isn’t any wasted base material. So while one board might have a gold/brown base with black letters, the next one might have a black base with gold/brown letters.
- Recycled Materials
How the Niche Theme rides
Board: 155cm Theme
Bindings: Burton Malavita
Boots: ThirtyTwo TM-Two
Angles: +12 -9
The snow was quite hardpacked, windblown at the top and a bit softer at the bottom of the hill.
Flex & Camber Profile
Although it is rated as a medium flex, it almost felt medium stiff to me. I expect that it was because I was riding a brand new board, that hadn’t been broken in yet. The Camber dominant hybrid profile was very nice to ride, it felt quite close to a regular old school camber feel. It was very solid feel, with plenty of pop.
The edge hold of the Theme was really good, and the hardpacked snow was a good test for any board. The combination of the mostly hybrid profile, with the 2X Traction Bumps meant that the board felt very strong throughout the turns, especially at the start and end of a turn. Even riding fast through very hard snow where I would normally expect a board to slide out a little, it just cut through without a problem. Another plus is that the traction bumps don’t have that more aggressive feel (like magne-traction), but they still add to the edge hold. It isn’t usually a problem with my size 10 boots, but the extra width under the feet means that I could push the board right over in a turn and not have my toe or heels drag.
Being a true twin, in shape and flex it rides just the same switch as it does in regular.
I expected the board to ride pretty well at high speed, and it did that well. Camber is always nice for fast riding, and the ride felt quite solid and damp (no vibrations from what I guess is being helped by the basalt stringers). Even riding flat based at higher speed didn’t feel catchy.
There is plenty of pop in the board, if you load up the nose or tail it pushed back for ollies nicely. Landing feels very solid, even at high speed.
Overall the Theme is a very solid freestyle board. If you are looking for a board to ride in the park and all-mountain, it would be a good choice. The flex is strong enough that it can handle big jumps easily, the camber keeps it feeling very solid, while the edge hold is good even in bad snow conditions. On top of that, it looks really good, and is recyclable.
If you are an aggressive rider, but don’t want a board that is mega stiff, it is definitely worth a try.
- Nice camber profile
- Strong edge hold
- Not super playful
Niche Theme 2017 Specs
|Length (cm)||Effective Edge (cm)||Contact Length (cm)||Sidecut Radius (m)||Waist Width (cm)||Tip / Tail Length (cm)||Tip / Tail Width (cm)||Stance Width (mm)||Setback||Camber (mm)|