Hello and welcome to my Nidecker Kaon-X review.
In this review I will take a look at the Kaon-X as all-mountain snowboard bindings.
As per tradition here at SnowboardingProfiles.com I will give the Kaon-X a score out of 100 (based on several factors) and see how they compare with other all-mountain bindings.
Bindings: Nidecker Kaon-X
Price: $229 (USD recommended retail)
Flex Rating: Medium-Stiff (7/10)
Flex Feel: Medium (4.5/10)
Rating Score: 76.3/100
Compared to other Men’s All-Mountain Bindings
Out of the 25 men’s all-mountain bindings that I rated:
Overview of the Kaon-X’s Specs
Check out the tables for the Kaon-X ’s specs and available sizes.
2 x 4 | 4x4 | 3 hole | Channel
US BOOT SIZE
EURO BOOT SIZE
UK BOOT SIZE
Who are the Kaon-X Most Suited To?
The Kaon-X are a nice affordable choice for anyone looking for someone not looking to pay too much, but still getting a mid-flex binding (most cheaper bindings tend to be softer). If you felt these in hand, they feel super soft (see more below) but they ride more medium flex.
Best suited to boards in the 3/10 to 5/10 flex range.
The Kaon-X in More Detail
O.k. let’s take a more detailed look at what the Kaon-X are capable of.
Bindings: Nidecker Kaon-X 2022, L
Date: January 20, 2022
Overcast with patchy visibility. OK in some places and limited in others.
Temp: 36°F (2°C) and 28°F (-2°C) with wind chill. 9mph (15kph) winds.
24 hour snow: 0" (0cm)
48 hour snow: 0" (0cm)
7 day snow: 0" (0cm)
Snow conditions on groomer: Well groomed in places. Ungroomed and choppy and slushy elsewhere.
Snow conditions off groomer: A little crunchy in spots but mostly slushy.
Bindings angles: +15/-15
Stance width: 22″ (555mm)
Board demoed with: Lib Tech Terrain Wrecker
Baseplate Length: 9.9" (25.1cm)*
*measured on the top side of the footbed - note that part of the heel of the baseplate is raised a little bit.
Weight: 2lb 3oz (980g)
* for one binding, including screws and disc. The average weight of a small sample size of around 45 bindings (2019, 2020, 2021 & 2022 models) I weighed, was 1lb 15oz (890 grams). The lightest was 1lb 8oz (680g) and the heaviest was 2lb 9oz (1,160g). So the NX2-TM are pretty close to average - just on the heavier side of average.
The highback on these bindings felt so soft. You could twist them so much it felt like I could wring water out of them - and you could even bend the top of the highback back and forth - felt like I could almost bend it in half. So much so, that I would say 2/10 flex in hand. But when riding they didn't feel as soft as that - they felt more medium - so I'm guessing they have a relatively stiff baseplate - because the highback and straps felt super flexy.
Nidecker rates toe/heel stiffness and lateral stiffness at a 7/10. Whilst they weren't as soft to ride as they felt in hand, they were softer than a 7 for sure. By my feel compared to other bindings, I would say 4.5/10.
On the Kaon-X I wasn't able to carve as hard as I could on my control bindings (Burton Malavita) and not as well as on the other bindings I tested that day either (Flow NX2-TM and Flow Fenix-Plus). Made the board feel more washy than the others.
Felt good in terms of turning at slower speeds - still not quite as good as the Malavitas and not quite as good as the Fenix-Plus, but a little better than the NX2-TM, which is a stiffer binding.
Board feel wasn't bad, but not great either. Not as good compared to either my control bindings or the Fenix-Plus. About the same as the NX2-TM.
Not as good for getting pop out of the board as my control bindings. Made the board feel marginally less poppy.
Heel Cup: Not the heel cup as such, but you can move the highback back and forward – so a similar thing to highback adjustment.
I moved the highback forward to have my boots centered on the binding. I was riding size L which are for US men's boots sizes 8.5 to 11. With low profile 9.5s, it’s not really a surprise I had to move the highback forward - good to have that option, so I could get better centering.
You’ve got to completely unscrew the screws on each side to adjust the highback – taking the ladder and straps completely off. Takes a bit of time as the screws are quite long. The instructions are pretty clear that you’ve got to take them all the way off though – so that’s good.
Stance Width: Good stance width adjustment – heaps of micro adjustability when you run disc horizontal - and with the ability to move the highback to help with boot centering you should be able to run disc horizontal in most scenarios.
Highback Lean: Yes and tool-less. Didn't feel like you could go fully zero lean - but pretty close to - and you could have a lot of highback lean if that's how you like it.
Ankle Strap Position: No
Toe Strap Position: Yes
Ankle and toe strap length: Yes, of course - and tool-less.
Gas pedal/toe ramp extension: No
Highback Rotation: Yes.
When adjusting the highback forward for better boot centering (see above) I did it so that there was also a bit of highback rotation. I didn't give it too much rotation – felt like it was unnatural for the highback to do more rotation than that. Not fully parallel to the edges, but I very seldom go completely parallel anyway.
Compatible with: 2x4 | 4x4 | 3D | Channel
Not terrible, but not great shock absorption. Compared to my control bindings and the Flow bindings I also tested that day, I felt more chatter in these and more shock when landing.
Pretty standard for strap bindings. Ratchets weren't super smooth or anything but weren't too grabby or sticky or anything though.
Let’s Break up this text with a Video
Overall nice and comfortable.
Ankle Strap: The Kaon-X have honeycomb type straps which are also nice and flexy and conformed well to my boots without pressure points. Overall nice and comfortable.
Toe Strap: Ditto toe strap.
Canted Footbed: Yes
Padded Footbed: Decent padding.
Highback: A little padding but not heaps - but no calf bite when riding, which is the main thing.
Ankle support was really good in these bindings.
Score Breakdown and Final Verdict
Check out the breakdown of the score in the table below.
TOTAL after normalizing
The Kaon-X are pretty solid all round, particularly for price, but nothing exciting. Kind of average at everything and a step down from all others I tested that day for carves and chatter absorption and board feel. But no major weaknesses either. For the price a solid binding without any x factor or major strengths.
I've heard others say they found the Kaon-X stiffer and more responsive than I found them - so perhaps the pair I tested were softer than usual. That highback was surprisingly flexy (as I've mentioned for the 50th time!).
More Info, Current Prices and Where to Buy Online
If you want to see how the Kaon-X compares to other men’s all-mountain bindings or want to check out some other options in that category, check out the next link.