Gnu Mutant 2014 Review by The Good Ride
The Gnu Mutant isn’t bad for a quick release binding. Many quick release bindings are missing support or performance or both. Gnu thought this out well. The Gnu Mutant has good performance and good support thanks to some unique tech. Can you do better with a lot of traditional strap bindings? Yes, but would we hate on you if you chose these? Nope. If you are going to do quick release these bindings aren’t without flaws but they will provide a better quicker strap ride than most.
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So Gnu’s pressure relief tech is the big thing that makes these bindings better than most quick strap/release bindings. It makes for a quicker on without much or any extra adjusting. It’s just an extra lever that opens up the ankle strap so you can get your boots on and off easier. So most quick release/ quick strap bindings have a ratchet system or something like that so after you pull up the high back you still have to adjust the ankle/toe or uniform straps if you want a good secure fit. With Gnu when you pull up the high back you just snap down the pressure relief system back down and if dialed out well doesn’t require any additional adjustment.
Flex: Gnu’s rating seems true about their flex. It’s pretty rigid.
Adjustability: After a little bit of playing around you can get this pretty dialed out and it works well enough.
Comfort: Pretty comfortable. Nothing over the top but the big ankle strap should not cause problems for most.
Heel-Toe Response: Pretty quick edge to edge and does a good job turning a board.
Tip-Tail Response: It’s not bad but it’s kind of middle ground when it comes to flexing a board from tip to tail. There is a little bit of flex underfoot thanks to the foam or rubber stoppers but it doesn’t have that dynamic feel underfoot like many bindings with a lot of reduced dead spot going on.
Boot Support: Nice grip around the ankle and I felt pretty secure and locked in.
Ratchet System: You don’t use the ratchet system as you do with other bindings so it doesn’t really matter.
Shock Absorption: These bindings feel damp but I didn’t feel like it had bottomless shock absorption.
This binding wasn’t bad at all for a quick release/strap binding. There are still many traditional strap bindings I would choose over the Gnu Mutant but as far as quick strap release goes Gnu would be the brand I’d recommend if I can’t talk you out of the quick strap.
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Gnu Mutant User Reviews
I own a pair of the 15/16 model and have been very pleased. I was highly skeptical at first of a quick release binding, but this has exceeded my expectations. I'm an older rider and knee and back issues were making it more difficult to get in and out of traditional bindings, even while standing. The ease with this binding is huge. While the Mutant isn't quite as comfortable and doesn't provide quite the same measure of response and support, it isn't a big enough difference to outweigh the ease. The extra ankle strap is particularly huge in this department as it adds extra support.