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Compact & Lightweight iSUP Test 2023 / SUPBOARDER PRO HEAD TO HEAD

In this SUPboarder PRO head to head test we put 10 Compact & Lightweight iSUPs priced between £419 and £1449 up against each other. Compact & Lightweight iSUPs are becoming more common in many brands product line ups and offer paddlers many advantages such as being easier to transporting store and lightweight to carry on adventures but are they right for you and what are the compromises you might need to consider when comparing them to a traditional iSUP? Our head to head comparison by 9 SUPboarder testers will help you decide what board is right for YOU!

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Natalie Boyle
Natalie Boyle
11 months ago

I haven’t got any audio for this video – is that just me?

Natalie Boyle
Natalie Boyle
11 months ago
Reply to  Will Rogers

Thanks Will, that worked. Great video!

Phil Chilton
Phil Chilton
11 months ago

Fanatic pocket, top tip, use the fins off the red compact. Same fins just bigger. Red compact, roll the board towards you and kneel on the board. Makes rolling a lot easier. I have both the red and fanatic.

Beau Nixon
Editor
11 months ago
Reply to  Phil Chilton

Great tips!

Luuk Nouwen
Luuk Nouwen
11 months ago

I own a Red Paddle Compact 11″ and my experiences match the test. It is a nice and well-built board, but with a few drawbacks. My first board was replaced by Red Paddle because of the abundance of glue residue. The second board had no problems with glue residue. As in the test, my fins face slightly inwards, which does not improve performance. I don’t understand why Red Paddle chose this setup.  The pump is, in my opinion, a poor choice. Namely, it is big, heavy and has no deflate function. I prefer to use the Bravo Super Pump from… Read more »

Beau Nixon
Editor
11 months ago
Reply to  Luuk Nouwen

Thanks for your insightful comment. Great to hear from you

Steve Smith
Steve Smith
11 months ago

That Kokopelli one is so cool, I need to grab one!

Beau Nixon
Editor
11 months ago
Reply to  Steve Smith

Yeah it sure is!

Paul (Alf) Garner
Paul (Alf) Garner
11 months ago

Great Review overall, but the was no mention of the ATB transformer bag Red Paddle Co. This can be stripped down to the core straps. Which make it lighter and more transportable.

I would love to see the a review on the compact Starboard, is that coming any time soon?

Archie Beeching
Archie Beeching
10 months ago

I have signed up to Pro for a month but can’t seem to access the actual review, just the teaser and the behind the scenes. Am I missing something?

Reuben Ellis
Admin
10 months ago

Hi Archie , Thanks for the sign up. This will be due to your computers cache. Please try opening a new browser and singing in again this should solve it.

Archie Beeching
Archie Beeching
10 months ago
Reply to  Reuben Ellis

Got it! Thanks Reuben. It’s a great review!

Reuben Ellis
Admin
10 months ago

Great

Steve Wildman
Steve Wildman
9 months ago

Great and really interesting video. It might be just me, but Vimeo won’t play on my tv/Chromecast, so i have to watch on my phone rather than the tv. But as for the video, great balanced views and it highlighted many considerations! Cheers!

Reuben Ellis
Admin
9 months ago
Reply to  Steve Wildman

Hey Steve, yeah we are aware of the issue. Sorry about this, we are looking/working to change this into the future. Thanks for the sub

cam
cam
9 months ago

Your reviewers said the Honu Seaton was a bit heavy. On the Honu website, they list it at 16 pounds, Is honu incorrect? 16 pounds sounds lite to me

Reuben Ellis
Admin
9 months ago
Reply to  cam

Hey Cam, We weighed the Honu we had at 9.16kg thats just over 20lbs. Maybe we had a slight heavier one or it was weight with the fins off.

cam
cam
9 months ago
Reply to  Reuben Ellis

Thanks Reuben. I guess we can not trust the listed specs on any board

Reuben Ellis
Admin
9 months ago
Reply to  cam

Most of time they are pretty close. TBH a few years ago I remember reviewing a SUP from Honu that we weighed it lighter than they stated.

tyl vergriete
tyl vergriete
8 months ago

Hi, did you have a chance to test the Starboard Zen Roll in the end?
Thanks. Tyl

Reuben Ellis
Admin
8 months ago
Reply to  tyl vergriete

We still haven’t seen one yet. But we do know its still coming our way. Sorry we cant give you our thoughts on this one yet. Stock issues and availability still the main problem. But I think it could be a good board

tyl vergriete
tyl vergriete
7 months ago

Hi, did you test or hear anything about the ultra light model from Lite venture? It seems to be relatively similar to the Indiana feather. Thanks. Tyl

Reuben Ellis
Admin
7 months ago
Reply to  tyl vergriete

unfortunately we did not. It will be interesting to see one

Greg Norman
Greg Norman
7 months ago

I don’t really know what to think of the Red compact, I purchased an 11′ over the 12′ because of the redundancy of already owning two of the Red 12′ 6″ Voyagers. It is a bit more flexy than the non compacts, but it paddles fine. Nothing really to write home about over it , while I think the 5 piece paddle is ok with the shaft, the small plastic blade is the real letdown in the whole thing. I like how small the thing packs down, even with the Titan pump, it is a setup that an average paddler,… Read more »

Reuben Ellis
Admin
7 months ago
Reply to  Greg Norman

Thanks for your comment and thoughts Greg. Good to hear you views on your compact. I do agree its a great all round shape and packs down well but the paddle blade is pretty small for most paddlers. And once you feel the performance of the longer faster boards it will feel pretty slow and boring.

Trevor Goodman
Trevor Goodman
4 months ago

Great test with some surprising results. Personally I love the idea of a compact board that you roll and not fold so really that the Fanatic was allways going to be a winner. I also like the Fanatic bag but it would work just as well with a roll top. Looking forward to the Starboard review. As I allways take a board when I go on holiday I am looking for a lightweight compact board that rolls so that I can put it into a standard bag with all my normal luggage and check it in as at 23k. .

Reuben Ellis
Admin
4 months ago
Reply to  Trevor Goodman

Hey Trevor, Thanks for your comment and thoughts. We still haven’t got on the Starboard unfortunately but I can see it being up there with the Fanatic on paper already.

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