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2024 Atomic Redster Q9.8

SkiTalk Test Team

Testing skis so you don't have to.
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Philpug
Length tested: 173
Location tested: Snowbasin UT
Conditions tested in: Groomed old snow

Atomic has a history of producing stronger skis in the mid 80 mm segment and the Redster Q9.8 definitely lives up to that heritage. The Q9.8’s broad tip really pulls you into the turn and the stiffness underfoot and flared tail will hold you like a fat kid holds onto a glazed donut. The Redster Q9.8 is a tenacious ski with a hard snow bias which is quite refreshing when so many brands are coming to market with more off-piste-oriented skis of this width.
  • Insider tip: Atomic does a great job of scaling sizing. Also, the Q9.8 will be a part of SkiTalk's long term test fleet.
  • One thing I would change: The graphics are a bit blah. Shouldn’t a Redster have at least some red in it?
img_6592-jpeg.199683
4/6/23 Long term update: The one word I have to describe the Q9.8 and that is reactive. We talk a lot about "wide narrow skis" and the 9.8 is the epitome of such a ski. At 85ish underfoot, a construction that is race ski breed and fully cambered makes this ski a ripper even up to a few inches of fresh on top of corduroy. In the follow up to the initial review, I got to take these out in some nice chalk, if you are looking for a hard snow ski that has some versatility, here you.

Drahtguy Kevin
Length tested: 181
Location tested: Loveland, CO
Conditions tested in: Soft groomed snow, moguls, off-piste chalk

An ultra-smooth and stable ride with a confidence-inspiring tip balanced perfectly between stiff enough and not too stiff make this ski a winner for frontside focused skiers. The tip engages nicely allowing the ski to quickly cross the fall line with minimal input from the pilot. The 85mm width feels much narrower when getting the ski on edge and grips like a vice. The tail rewards with energy into the next turn. The 9.8 favors piste skiers, but a foray into the bumps and ungroomed isn't out of the question.
  • Insider tip: This ski feels its full length.
  • One thing I would change: A dab of red belongs on the Redster Q9.8
 
Awards
Who is it for?
Those who wanted the Salomon S/Force Bold but waited too long. Skiers wanting a predictable performance-oriented ride.
Who is it not for?
Lighter skiers might be overpowered. No worries Atomic offers the Redster as the Q7
Skier ability
  1. Advanced
  2. Expert
Ski category
  1. Frontside
  2. All Mountain
Ski attributes
  1. Groomers
  2. Moguls
Segment
  1. Men
  2. Women

Specifications

right ad
Available sizes
159, 166, 173, 181
Dimensions
134-84.4-18.8
Radius
14.4m@173cm
Rocker profile
  1. Full camber
Size Scaling
  1. Dimensions
Construction design
  1. Carryover
Binding options
  1. System

jcjpdx

Getting on the lift
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Joined
Feb 1, 2020
Posts
61
Location
PDX
I demoed these skis last year and enjoyed them tremendously. I have been a drifter early rise kind of guy for many years but recently have been trying to carve more. I was surprised at how well I could manage these skis, both on piste and moguls or cut up side snow. I could even drift if the occasion arose. So, I am looking at them for this year. I also have seen a the Redster 7.8, and am wondering about the difference. Same dimensions, the 7.8 is $200 cheaper, I’m wondering what I am giving up for the lower price.
 

Philpug

Notorious P.U.G.
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42,899
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Reno, eNVy
I demoed these skis last year and enjoyed them tremendously. I have been a drifter early rise kind of guy for many years but recently have been trying to carve more. I was surprised at how well I could manage these skis, both on piste and moguls or cut up side snow. I could even drift if the occasion arose. So, I am looking at them for this year. I also have seen a the Redster 7.8, and am wondering about the difference. Same dimensions, the 7.8 is $200 cheaper, I’m wondering what I am giving up for the lower price.
The 9.8 is a more substantial ski with the better Servotec and a much stronger binding. Check out the 7 review here

 

Paul Lutes

Making fresh tracks
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Jun 6, 2016
Posts
2,717
Recently acquired the Q9 (75 waist), but haven't been able to find any reviews/comparisons in the SkiTalk data base. Any body have some input?
 

Philpug

Notorious P.U.G.
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Recently acquired the Q9 (75 waist), but haven't been able to find any reviews/comparisons in the SkiTalk data base. Any body have some input?
Nice ski. :), like the 9.8 but 75mm underfoot.
 

Scruffy

Making fresh tracks
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Nov 16, 2015
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2,449
Location
Upstate NY
Who is it not for? Those who want their Redsters Red.



So what to call it?

The idea was there. The speed was there. Now for the name.
Easy: start with the Porsche Speedster – a icon of speed – and mix in Atomic’s famous red brand color. The name Redster was born.
Now to win some races…
 

Philpug

Notorious P.U.G.
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42,899
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Reno, eNVy
Long term update (11/20/23): I keep coming back to the Redster Q9.8 and I realize that I really like wide carvers. At 85mm underfoot, sorry 84.4mm, it can handle the cut up snow on the side of the trail and still rip the hardpack back to the lift. The three words I use to describe the Q9.8 is Solid. Solid and Solid.
 

tomahawkins

Making fresh tracks
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Dec 3, 2019
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Bellingham, WA
Can't wait to get on these this year. As much as I love my 65mm underfoots, I'll be better served with the extra width here in the PNW.
 

tomahawkins

Making fresh tracks
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^^^ Yep. First day down on the Q9.8s at pass holders day at Mt Baker. Stuck mainly to off piste of North Face and Austin. Got into several patches of week old, rain infused, refrozen, cut up crud. Extra width is good.
 

tomahawkins

Making fresh tracks
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The Q9.8 continues to surprise and amaze. Post rain event Baker day, which meant carving on our limited groomers, then once things softened up, mank converts to crud converts to soft bumps. I really like this ski (173) in the bumps.
 

tomahawkins

Making fresh tracks
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Bellingham, WA
5.5 out of 10 from Rickety Ski Reviews. This guy does a good job reviewing skis for people who think they ski better than they actually do. I'll continue to take my "only carving skis" and use it to carve up bump runs and steep chalk.
 

JC Ski

Putting on skis
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Mar 1, 2023
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74
Location
Minnesota
5.5 out of 10 from Rickety Ski Reviews. This guy does a good job reviewing skis for people who think they ski better than they actually do. I'll continue to take my "only carving skis" and use it to carve up bump runs and steep chalk.
Hah classic. I also think I enjoy taking stiff skis where they aren't supposed to go, but I think length plays a role in how punishing a stiff ski is.

You said you ski these at 173 for bumps, how long are some other skis you enjoy?
 

tomahawkins

Making fresh tracks
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Bellingham, WA
Hah classic. I also think I enjoy taking stiff skis where they aren't supposed to go, but I think length plays a role in how punishing a stiff ski is.

For sure. Rickety should have chosen the 173s, maybe even shorter, but not the 181s. The added punishment doesn't just come from the length, but also the flex. @Noodler has uncovered several examples in SoothSki showing how the same ski in different lengths often has significant differences in flex to the point where they should really be considered different skis.

You said you ski these at 173 for bumps, how long are some other skis you enjoy?
Good question. My skis range from 170 up to 188*. For the last year or so, I'm finding I enjoy shorter lengths. Must be getting old. I was out today on a legit Baker powder day on my Peak 110s at 188 and just wasn't having a great time at that length -- the width was also unpleasant. And now I'm pondering my next order for an all-mountain and struggling with the decision of going either 175 or 182; will probably choose the former.

* side note, I do have some 157s on order, but for a special project.
 

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