Hello and welcome to my Nidecker Alpha APX review.
In this review I will take a look at the Alpha APX as a Freeride snowboard.
As per tradition here at SnowboardingProfiles.com I will give the Alpha APX a score out of 100 (based on several factors) and also see how it compares with other Freeride snowboards.
Board: Nidecker Alpha APX
Price: $569 (USD recommended retail)
Flex Rating: Mid-Stiff (8/10 on Nidecker’s flex scale)
Flex Feel: Mid-Stiff (7/10)
Rating Score: 85.3/100
Compared to other Men’s Freeride Boards
Out of the 35 Men’s Freeride snowboards that I rated:
Overview of the Alpha APX’s Specs
Check out the tables for the Alpha APX’s specs and available sizes.
Hybrid Camber | Nidecker's "Surfy Camrock"
Sintered (Nidecker's "N-9000" base)
Lighter than normal
Waist Width (mm)
Rec Rider Weight (lb)
Rec Rider Weight (kg)
* the 162W is a new size as of the 2023 model
Who is the Alpha APX Most Suited To?
The Alpha APX is a great option for someone looking for something to handle a large variety of terrains - and someone who wants something that can lay into a carve pretty well when they want to, but also something that can get surfy when slashing and riding pow.
Certainly not for the beginner, but easier to ride than I was expecting and shouldn't be a problem for a higher end intermediate rider.
The Alpha APX in More Detail
O.k. let’s take a more detailed look at what the Alpha APX is capable of.
Board: Nidecker Alpha APX 2022, 158cm (258mm waist width)
Date: January 18, 2022
Cloudy and a little misty - visibility was OK in spots but quite bad in other spots.
Temperature: 32°F (0°C) - no wind chill - not a breath of wind.
24hr snow: 0" (0cm)
48hr snow: 0" (0cm)
7 day snow: 9" (22cm)
On groomer: Slushy and ungroomed. Very bumpy uneven conditions even on groomer.
Off groomer: Pretty sketchy - mostly slushy with lots of tree debris.
But also rode this a second day in better groomer conditions where I could open out and carve a little easier.
Bindings angles: +15/-15
Stance width: 21.3″ (540mm)
Stance Setback: Setback 3/4" (10mm)*
*on effective edge - on total length of board setback more like 2" (52.5mm)
Width at Inserts: 10.57" (268.5mm) at front insert and 10.59" (269mm) at back insert.
Rider Height: 6'0"
Rider Weight: 180lbs
Rider Boot Size: US9.5 Adidas Tactical ADV
Bindings Used: Burton Malavita M
Weight: 6lbs 3oz (2800grams)
Weight per cm: 17.72 grams/cm
Average Weight per cm: 18.43 grams/cm*
*based on a sample size of around 100 models that I’ve weighed in 2019, 2020, 2021 *& 2022 models. The Alpha APX is lighter than normal. And it feels just a little lighter on snow too. It's got this super smooth feeling and a feeling like it's a magnet to the snow - but at the same time doesn't feel heavy - usually I find smoother boards like this to feel a little heavier but not in this case.
Didn't have any to test it in either of the times I rode it, but it just felt so surfy at times, I reckon this thing would be super fun in powder.
And the specs suggest it should be good to. It's got a rounded 3D nose, a healthy amount of rocker in the nose before the contact point and whilst the setback on effective edge is only 3/4" (20mm), it's setback on the overall length of the board by closer to 2 1/4" (55mm), due to the longer nose than tail, in addition to the setback on effective edge. There's also a small taper.
Carving & Turning
Carving: Given how surfy it feels when you try to get loose on it, it carves really well, when you lock into an edge.
Turning: It's pretty easy to initiate turns on despite being stiffer - and when you get looser with the slashes this thing feels super surfy.
Maneuverability at slow speeds (nimbleness): It's not lightning quick edge to edge but for it's flex, it's pretty agile at slower speeds.
Skidded Turns: It's got a big bow of camber in it - 10.5mm at the highest point (unweighted)! But it's not catchy. The rocker and rounded 3D nose likely play a large part in that.
It has such a smooth, damp feel to it and when you open it out, it responds. Giving you a nice stable, minimal chatter ride when bombing.
Crud: It was able to smash through or over the crud, and we had a lot of it on the first day I rode it, really well.
Bumps: Pretty good. It was fairly good at short/sharp turns and generally navigated bumps, either over top or in between really well.
Let’s Break up this text with a Video
. Not a lot of snap/pop. Neither super easy not a super high ceiling. Just aboard that is smooth and likes to stay on ground. Landings pretty solid. Side hits hard to judge today but reckon it'd be average at best
Pop: Not a lot of pop. Pop wasn't super easy to extract either and there wasn't a bucket load when you really loaded it up either.
Approach: Stable but with some forgiveness.
Landing: Solid landings, without being a stomper.
Side-hits: Not amazing, but did OK.
Small jumps/Big jumps: Better for bigger jumps, but would be fine on any.
It's pretty directional, but it didn't feel too bad riding switch. The taper is fairly minimal and the setback on effective edge isn't massive, but I still thought it would be worse than it felt. Still not amazing though.
Not terrible. There was some pressability in the tip and tail - and whilst it did feel different to press the nose and the tail, it wasn't galaxies different.
Score Breakdown and Final Verdict
Check out the breakdown of the score in the table below.
TOTAL after normalizing
The thing that impressed and surprised me the most about the Alpha APX was how surfy you could get it to feel. When you really lent into the edge and committed to a carve, it reacted and gave you a carve, but when you wanted to surf, it was just so surfy. Not sure how that's achieved, given the relative stiffness of it and given it's ability to also carve so well - but it does it somehow.
And across the board, it just rides well - sure it's not awesome for freestyle or park stuff, but for everything it's so versatile - there's no terrain where this thing can go and not only get by, but thrive, whether it be a perfectly laid groomer to carve, the messiest crud at the end of the day, bumps, trees, ice or powder, this thing has got it all covered.
And somehow it achieves all of this with a price well below the average for this category.
More Info, Current Prices and Where to Buy Online
Check out the links below for more info on the Alpha APX, where to buy or if you are researching prices or available sizes.
If your keen to check out some other Freeride options or to see how the Alpha APX compares to other freeride decks check out the link below.
Hey man saw you had this on your freeride top 10. Just wondering why you didn’t include the Beta Apx instead which I thought would have been a better freeride board. Or what are your general opinions on the two boards (differences etc). Cheers
Thanks for your message.
I haven’t tested the Beta APX, so it wasn’t eligible. Having not tested it, I can’t say from experience how it would ride, or score. But on paper, it’s certainly more directional (longer nose, shorter tail, more taper, more setback) and would therefore likely do better in powder. So, it’s almost certain that it would be a better powder board. But I suspect also that it wouldn’t be quite as good for carving and maybe not as stable at speed either. So, overall, it may not score as well. But couldn’t say for sure having not ridden it. But it certainly does look more suited to powder and likely better if you were to use it as a powder board – so in that sense better, but overall, I’m not sure it would do better overall – at least not for the weighting’s that I give for different factors for freeride boards.
I’m in the search for a new snowboard as my last one is getting old and I want a board to better suit my style.
Im 190cm and weight 78kg with a size 12 boot. Im a borderline intermediate to advanced rider and I generally ride groomers blues and blacks as well as a bit of off track powder. I enjoy hard carving at speed but also snappy turns. I don’t enjoy park and not planning on starting.
Currently I’m deciding between the burton skeleton key and the Nidecker alpha apx but I’m open to other options.
I’m asking for your opinion on what would be a good board/size match. Any help appreciated.
Thanks for your message.
I think both would be suitable for what you’re describing. The Skeleton Key is the snappier turner, IMO, so it has that over the Alpha APX. Both can lay down a good carve and both are good in powder. The Alpha APX has a surfier feel in powder versus the SK. The SK a little more locked in and precise, but also has some forgiveness to it, because it’s not overly stiff. The Alpha APX is better in terms of stability at speed.
Size-wise, because of your boot size and that you like hard carving, the 158 Alpha APX is going to be too narrow, so there’s not a size there that would work, IMO. For the Skeleton Key, the 158 would also be too narrow, IMO. The 162 is even pushing it width-wise, IMO. I would look at something wider.
The Burton Hometown Hero in the 160W would be a good alternative to the SK for what you’re describing. It’s a little stiffer than the SK, but I think it would suit what your wanting well.
Some other options, taking into account your need for carving but with snappy turns, and some powder performance, include:
– Lib Tech BRD: 162W – though this is bordering on being a little big for you, IMO
– YES Hybrid: 157
– Lib Tech Ejack Knife: 159W
– YES PYL: 160W – though I’d make sure to go for the 2023 model over the 2022 model. The 2022 model was not as good for snappy turns as the 2023 model is
Hope this helps