The Flow Five SE is worth the extra $20 extra over the standard The Five binding. We don’t even know why Flow is even offering the standard The Five. You get an over the toe strap and a less pressure on the top of your foot. Some feel better response with the over the toe strap. The shock absorption is still poor. It does have improved edge to edge response with the rocker base plate design but longitudinal flexing for something like a butter or press hasn’t really been addressed like it has with other bindings. The Five SE isn’t a bad choice but it would of been a very recommendable binding if Flow added a watered down NX2 base plate with less board contact and more shock absorption. Still it’s moving in the right direction.
Riders: James and Peter
Boots: Burton Ion, Nike Kaiju
Boards: Flow Drifter
Flex: Pretty mellow and easy going.
Adjustability: It takes a bit of work to dial it out but with some time it might work. We didn’t feel the quick strap vibe going on here. It didn’t feel fast. If you want to leave it a little loose you can get your boot in but if you want it snug like most bindings it takes just as long as a traditional strap. You do have the option to keep the high back up and get in/out like you are on a normal binding.
Comfort: Pretty comfortable and it felt better than the
Heel-Toe Response: Felt fine edge to edge for such a mellow binding. It powered the drifter fine.
Tip-Tail Response: The whole binding felt dead under foot and we couldn’t butter that easy on a board that felt like it could butter well.
Boot Support: It felt more supportive than the other uni body flow strap but it still didn’t have the support that other traditional strap bindings have.
Ratchet System: Not too great. If you want to use this like a traditional strap binding which you can it’s not as good as many ratchet systems we have used. Flow never really had to focus on this before so it might be time to work on them now that they are going to be used more.
Shock Absorption: Just a little sprinking of EVA across the base plate. It didn’t feel rough riding around and they were damp enough but I would not want to land flat with these bindings on.