Before purchasing these bindings, I was torn between the Calibers, the Salomon Relay Pro (I had the old Relay Thrusters) and Ride SPIs. My goal was to get a med-stiff flex, light-weight, high-performance binding for freeride and backcountry. Due to familiarity with the brand and a discounted price, I went with the Salomon Caliber 2011 bindings. The build quality is excellent and I foresee these bindings providing 3-4 seasons of high-quality performance.
I've ridden a couple days on them so far (paired with a 07-08 Supermodel and a Salmon Synapse 2010 boot). The bindings are perfect - extremely responsive, mega-comfortable, and excellent integration with the Synapse boots. The Calibers provide a noticeable increase in control in steep terrain and while I can't find it on the binding, I'm sure there is a secret gas-pedal installed as these things excel at top speeds. These bindings like to be ridden hard, fast, and aggressive... they'll repay you for putting them where they like to be.
Performance in untracked powder conditions was unparalleled.
Depending on your riding style and given the stiffer flex of the binding, you may want to slightly decrease your boot tightness or stop a notch short of your usual binding tight fit. On run-of-the-mill groomers it's fun to have a little more flex. As the winter progresses, I'm looking forward to putting the Calibers through some more testing but I'm confident they'll come through with flying colors.
- On the stiffer side (compared to the Relay series)
- Significantly greater control and responsiveness than "average" binding
- Perfect integration with Salmon boots (Synapse)
- Excellent build quality and components
- Like to be ridden very aggressively
- Easily adjustable (heel, lean, toe extension, etc)