Hello and welcome to my Nitro Santoku snowboard review.
In this review, I will take a look at the Santoku as an all-mountain-freestyle snowboard.
As per tradition here at SnowboardingProfiles.com I will give the Santoku a score out of 100 (based on several factors) and see how it compares with other all-mountain-freestyle snowboards.
Board: Nitro Santoku
Flex Rating: Medium-Stiff (7/10)
Flex Feel on Snow: Soft (2/10)
Rating Score: 80.9/100
Compared to other Men’s All-Mountain-Freestyle Boards
Out of the 24 men’s all-mountain-freestyle snowboards that I rated:
Overview of the Santoku's Specs
Check out the tables for the Santoku's specs and available sizes.
Full Camber - Nitro's "True Camber"
Sintered "Sintered Speed Formula 2.0 Base"
Felt on the ligher side of normal
Waist Width (mm)
Rec Rider Weight (lb)
Rec Rider Weight (kg)
Who is the Santoku Best Suited To?
The Santoku is a great option for anyone looking for a super buttery all-mountain-freestyle board, that's bordering on all-mountain, in the way it rides powder. It has a long nose and tail for an all-mountain-freestyle board - a really good option for those that like to ride switch when they get in the pow.
Not for beginners, mostly because it is a full camber profiles - that said, a high end beginner probably wouldn't be too far off it - and it doesn't feel like a typical full camber profile would, IMO.
The Santoku in More Detail
O.k. let’s take a more detailed look at what the Santoku is capable of.
Board: Nitro Santoku 2020, 156cm (250mm waist width)
Date: March 7, 2020
Conditions: Cloudy but still around 90-95% visibility.
Groomers had a decent layer of soft with mostly a medium firmness under that layer, with some harder spots in patches.
Off groomer soft with some overnight fresh. Not waist deep or anything, but a nice amount.
Wind around 10-15kph (6-9mph). Temperature was -8°C (17.6°F) and with wind chill -11°C (12.2°F).
Bindings angles: +15/-15
Stance width: 540mm (21.3″)
Stance Setback: Centered
Width at Inserts: 263mm (10.35")
Rider Height: 6'0"
Rider Weight: 175lbs
Rider Boot Size: US10 Salomon Lo-Fi
Bindings Used: Burton Malavita M
The first thing that struck me about this board was the flex. Think it's the softest board I've ridden. The Nitro rep even said that it was the softest board ever. That's why I was so surprised to see Nitro rate it as 7/10 for flex. It's the most off-rated board I've ridden. Certainly stiffer than 2 between the feet but tip and tail was like a 1/10 almost. I would put it down to the fact that it had become a noodle over time, but the rep did say to expect it to be soft. Granted also, if I'd ridden the 159, which was probably the better size for me, it would have felt a little stiffer, but still no more than 3/10 I'd say.
It has a long nose and tail and that helps this thing to float in powder. It's a centered twin and a full camber profile, which is usually a recipe for pretty poor powder performance, in my experience. But that longer nose and tail makes it float pretty decently for a twin.
Good option for those looking to ride switch in pow a lot.
Carving & Turning
Carving: It's not ultra carvy, but it definitely carves better than you would expect for a board that feels this soft. I think the camber profiles helps there - and the fact it's a little stiffer throught the middle of the board.
Turning: Easy and snappy on regular turns.
Maneuverability at slow speeds: I found it super nimble at slow speeds.
Skids: Actually pretty easy to skid turnds on, despite being full camber. The softness defintitely helps there though.
Again, for how soft it feels, it's surprisingly good at speed, which is usually not a characteristic of a super soft board. It's still definitely no crazy bomber, but can handle more speed than you would think for the flex.
It's pretty good. Doesn't crush through the crud - can get bucked around a little, but easy to make adjustments when you get thrown off a little.
And super nimble for weaving between bumps.
Overall decent without being epic for jumps.
Pop: Not oodles of pop but as easily accessible as it gets.
Approach: Stable enough and really nimble.
Landing: Not a stomper but more solid than I was expecting.
Side-hits: Fun on sidehits. Super maneuverable for those trickier approaches and easily accessible pop.
Small jumps/Big jumps: Small is best, IMO and medium fine too, but not as suited to larger jumps, IMO.
Really good for riding switch.
Really easy to get the spin around, despite the longer nose and tail - and good for landing and setting up switch.
Easy to jib with. I'm not a strong jibber and I found this board easy to jib with.
So buttery it's almost too buttery. Almost too easy to butter. Just had that feeling like it was too squishy. Usually I find the easier the better, and this is super easy to butter, and all round very good, but just that feeling like it was almost too easy.
Score Breakdown and Final Verdict
Check out the breakdown of the score in the table below.
TOTAL after normalizing
Overall, the Santoku is a very intersting board. Ultra soft in the nose and tail and overall felt very soft to me, despite being rated 7/10 by Nitro, I felt it more like 2/10!
But a fun board and something that is better for carving and speed than you would think - but still definitely more on the playful side.
More Info, Current Prices and Where to Buy Online
If you want to learn more about the Santoku, or if you are ready to buy, or if you just want to research prices and availability, check out the links below.
If you want to check out some other all-mountain-freestyle snowboard options, or if you want to compare how the Santoku compares to other all-mountain-freestyle snowboards, then check out the next link.