frequency Approved: The 2012 Burton Driver X

Often, snowboard boots are defined by a simple equation of comfort versus support—the more supportive a boot, the more break in time, the more foot pain, but, also, the more life you get out of the product. The Burton Driver X, however, fits my foot just right—a bit wider in the toe box, a bit narrower in the ankle—and offers the most support of damn near any boot out there.

As with most boots there is a short break in period with the Driver X, but I’ve noticed over the past six years I’ve been riding them that Burton has been able to tweak the boot to the point where, with the addition of custom footbeds, this year’s set felt good by day three. This year, I’ve also paired them with the light-and-stiff Burton Diode bindings for a combination of fit and performance that may have seemed impossible back when I started riding in the early ‘90s. The Speedzone lace system is simple and effective—just check for wear if you’re heading out for more than a day on the resort to be sure, as I’ve heard it can be difficult to repair in the field, although I’ve yet to run into this issue.

While one boot can’t be perfect for everyone, I think I’ve found my match with the Driver X—a supportive, freeride oriented model that, with its Vibram sole, can stand up to an 80-day-plus season and stay supportive throughout. From splitboard missions to groomer days, the Driver X feels solid and I’ve never had issues with the boots breaking down in key moments—and they’ve been with me on everything from extended, multi-night tours to resort pow days, sled missions, Mt Baker’s Legendary Banked Slalom and even some spring jib laps.

Boots, some say, are the most important part of your snowboard setup. And I’ve been coming back to the Burton Driver X for the past six years. While they have been tweaked here and there, the Driver X have remained true to form as quite possibly the best offering for someone looking for a stiffer, more supportive and responsive boot.


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