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Jobe Aero 12 6 Review

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Price:  $1,100 List | $819.95 at Amazon
Pros:  Glides nicely, strap for carrying paddle on middle handle, stable for such a long narrow board, sturdy.
Cons:  No handle on nose or back, screwdriver required to install or remove fin.
Manufacturer:   Jobe
By Valentine Cullen ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Apr 30, 2016
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The Skinny

The Jobe is a great board that scored above average in every category, which is why it won our Top Pick award. It is 12'6" long x 29" wide x 6" thick. It's a touring model that is stable and glides very nicely. The only other board we tested that glides better is the Editors' Choice award-winning, Isle Touring. The Jobe has a long, narrow, rockered nose, a thick foam pad and a front cargo system. This board has the smallest width of any of the boards that we tested. It's very similar to the Raven and the Touring but it is more stable than the Raven.


Our Analysis and Test Results

Meet the Jobe. It's thin, narrow, tough, and stable and it has a long, narrow, pointy-rockered nose and it glides great. It has a front cargo system and a backpack that turns into a dry bag. It comes with a paddle and a nicer-than-average pump and air pressure gauge. We loved that it comes with a paddle-carrying strap and a D ring under the nose for tying off and anchoring.

Top Pick award winner  the Jobe with the KIALOA paddle.
Top Pick award winner, the Jobe with the KIALOA paddle.

Performance Comparison


Our Top Pick, the Jobe Aero 12 6, came in third place in our review, just behind our Editors Choice and Best Buy award winners.


Stability


The Jobe is a fairly stable board. It's not as stable as the NRS Baron 6, the Touring or the Isle Explorer, but it is just as stable as the Tower Xplorer and the Tower Adventurer 2 and it's much more stable than the Uli X Surf. It's almost as stable as the Touring.


The narrow width of this product makes it glide as nicely as the Xplorer and almost as nicely as the Touring, but takes away points in the stability metric. The Jobe is more stable than the Raven because it is slightly thicker. The information from both the Jobe website and the SHUBU Raven website state that both boards are six inches thick but the Jobe is actually slightly thicker than the Raven. We suspect this is due to the quality of the construction materials.

Rockered narrow nose of the Jobe.
Rockered narrow nose of the Jobe.

Glide Performance


The Jobe has a single large 9" curved fin and glides great through flat or choppy water and over wakes. It's also easy to steer. The Isle Touring is the only other board we tested that scored higher in this category. The Tower Xplorer received the same score as the Jobe in this metric, but it is much longer, thicker, and more challenging to transport.


Ease of Transport


The Jobe's inflation valve is on its nose. The contenders in this review that have inflation valves on the tail of the board vs. the nose received higher scores in this metric because they are easier to expel all of the air when rolling up after use. We also liked the products with inflation valves on the tail because if the fin is difficult to remove (like the fin on this board) then we could sometimes be lazy after paddling and roll the board up with the fins still attached.


This product lost points in this category also due to the fact that it requires a screwdriver to take the fin on and off and it's hard to unscrew. We also suspect the Phillips head screw might strip over time. We also think it's a drag to have to carry a screwdriver around as an additional piece of SUP gear.

The Jobe comes with a nice big backpack that has padded straps, a Velcro closure across the full length of the opening and Velcro straps on the outside for carrying the paddle if you need more room on the inside for more of your stuff. The Velcro closing can be rolled up and there are clips on each end that fasten to make the bag into a large dry bag if needed. The Jobe weighs only 21 pounds, so backpacking it to the water's edge shouldn't be a problem.

We do wish the Jobe had a handle on the nose or tail or both.

Ease of Inflation


This product comes with a nicer-than-average pump and air pressure gauge that have universal attachments at both ends of the pump hose, which is great if you are backpacking more than one board and want to lighten the load by taking only one pump. The Jobe takes an average amount of time to pump up.


Best Applications


This contender is great for touring on flat or rough water. It comes with a nice backpack that doubles as a dry bag and weighs only 21 pounds so it's also great for adventuring to places where the water's edge is not near where you park your vehicle.

Value


The Jobe's price tag of $1100 is a bit spendy, especially considering that the Editors' Choice Isle Touring sells for $745 on sale. But, it is a great board and it comes with a nice backpack that is also a dry bag and nicer than average gauge and pump with universal attachments. We loved the paddle strap on the handle of the Jobe.

The paddle strap on the handle of the Jobe is a nice feature.
The paddle strap on the handle of the Jobe is a nice feature.

Conclusion


We really liked testing the Jobe. It received Top Pick award because it's fun to paddle and scored above average in glide performance, stability, ease of transport, and inflation. It cuts through rough water with ease and isn't too wobbly. It comes with a dry bag backpack, paddle, and a really nice pump and gauge. We often appreciated its paddle strap, D ring on the bottom of the nose, and front cargo system. We do wish that it came with a handle on the nose or tail and an easier fin installation system like that of the NRS Baron 6.

The rockered nose of the Jobe cuts through choppy easily.
The rockered nose of the Jobe cuts through choppy easily.


Valentine Cullen