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Rossignol Soul 7 HD W Review

An incredibly versatile ski that shines exceptionally bright on powder days
Rossignol Soul 7 HD W
Photo: Rossignol
Editors' Choice Award
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Price:  $750 List | $399.00 at Amazon
Pros:  Great float in powder, playful, decent stability
Cons:  More expensive, slightly lumbering in bumps
Manufacturer:   Rossignol
By Renee McCormack ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Jan 24, 2018
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92
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#1 of 15
  • Stability at Speed - 20% 9
  • Carving - 20% 9
  • Crud - 20% 9
  • Powder - 20% 10
  • Playfulness - 15% 9
  • Bumps - 5% 8

Our Verdict

Despite its unique shape, the Rossignol Soul 7 HD W ski deserves its place not only within the "all-mountain" category but at the very top of the pile as the winner of the Editors' Choice Award. Does it shine in powder and soft snow? Yes, absolutely. But does it also crush it in all other types of snow and terrain? 100%. If you're a competent upper intermediate skier, this ski will gently guide you into the exciting world of off-piste landscapes. If you are a hard-charging lady who wants something which will act as a powder ski but still be a riot in crud as well as on the groomers, you've found your birthday present to yourself!

Compare to Similar Products

 
Rossignol Soul 7 HD W
Awards Editors' Choice Award Editors' Choice Award Top Pick Award Best Buy Award Best Buy Award 
Price $399.00 at Amazon$469.95 at Amazon$599.99 at Amazon$470.46 at Amazon$649 List
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Pros Great float in powder, playful, decent stabilityIncredibly versatile, easy to ski, fun and quick, only 92mm makes it nimbleA blast to ski, easy to turn, relatively stable, fantastic in powderGreat stability at high speeds, good on hard snow and crud, affordableAffordable, quick edge-to-edge, beautiful graphics
Cons More expensive, slightly lumbering in bumpsNot the perfect powder partnerNot perfect carvers, some deflection in crudOnly for shallower pow days, needs strong skier to guide themSlightly soft, lack of edge-hold
Bottom Line An incredibly versatile ski that shines exceptionally bright on powder daysThis versatile model is a Goldilocks ski: strong enough to battle the crud, but soft enough to accommodate lighter or mellower skiersFun and flexible, this is a ripping ski for ripping skiers (or those on their way to becoming one)This model will do great in everything but the deepest powder and is ideal for an aggressive skierAn affordable, handmade ski from Colorado offering a fun ride on a slightly narrower waist and gorgeous top sheet graphics
Rating Categories Rossignol Soul 7 HD W Volkl Secret 92 Elan Ripstick 94 W Dictator 2.0X Icelantic Skis Orac...
Stability At Speed (20%)
9.0
9.0
8.0
9.0
7.0
Carving (20%)
9.0
9.0
7.0
8.0
6.0
Crud (20%)
9.0
9.0
8.0
9.0
7.0
Powder (20%)
10.0
9.0
9.0
5.0
7.0
Playfulness (15%)
9.0
10.0
10.0
6.0
8.0
Bumps (5%)
8.0
9.0
9.0
5.0
8.0
Specs Rossignol Soul 7 HD W Volkl Secret 92 Elan Ripstick 94 W Dictator 2.0X Icelantic Skis Orac...
Waist Width (mm) 106 92 95 96 88
Shape 136-106-126 130-92-113 135-95-110 127-96-117 126-88-108
Available Lengths (cm) 156, 164, 172, 180 149, 156, 163, 170 156, 163, 170, 177 155, 163, 171, 175, 179, 183, 187 155, 162, 169
Radius (m) 18 17.9 16.2 18 18
Rocker Tip and tail, camber underfoot Tip and tail, camber underfoot Tip and tail, cambered inside edge Tip and tail, camber underfoot Tip rocker
Weight Per Pair (lbs) 7.7 8.2 6.7 7.9 6.5
Construction Type Sandwich Full sidewall SST sidewall Sandwich Full sidewall
Core Material Paulownia wood Multilayer woodcore, poplar/beech Tubelite wood Paulownia & Poplar Pacific albus wood
Tested Length (cm) 172 170 170 171 169
Intended Purpose All mountain powder All mountain All mountain play All mountain stability Fun and versatile
Ability Level All levels All levels All levels Advanced/Expert All levels

Our Analysis and Test Results

One of our favorite skis to take out on a deep powder day, the Rossignol Soul 7 HD W is also incredibly competent in all other snow conditions. The tapered tip and tail shape make this ski easy to bring around in most environments and make it surprisingly quick for its girth. The Soul 7, despite its attributes elsewhere, is most at home in deeper snow and off-piste. This ski could certainly become an excellent one-ski quiver for a woman who is also most comfortable in variable terrain, but who wants something which offers a kick on-piste as well.

Performance Comparison


As the winner of the Editors Choice, the Soul 7 impressed us in all...
As the winner of the Editors Choice, the Soul 7 impressed us in all variety of terrain: Steeps, crud, powder, groomers - even skiing in the clouds as shown here!
Photo: Scott Rokis

Stability at Speed


This was one of the arenas in which Rossignol really upped their game and caused us to choose this ski as the Editors' Choice.


Rossi's use of their Air Tip technology, matched with a new Carbon Alloy Matrix, creates a ski that is as dependable as your favorite coffee mug. Despite the enormous rockered tips, which look like they would want to flap like a swallow's wings, there is amazing steadiness along the entire length of the ski. Not only does this ski love high-speed groomers, but we found it was confidence-building when gaining momentum in the steeps and off-piste conditions.

The Soul 7 lost its tip-flap of old with its updated construction...
The Soul 7 lost its tip-flap of old with its updated construction, and now feels much more stable at speed.
Photo: Scott Rokis

This ski's dampness absorbs rippling terrain and allows you the freedom to go as fast as you'd like. All of our testers loved going their top speed on these babies! Relatively small amounts of tip flap and secure edge hold made us feel confident to fly down any pitch.

The edge grip is increased on this year's Soul 7.
The edge grip is increased on this year's Soul 7.
Photo: Scott Rokis

Since this ski does sport some voluminous tip rocker, most women will want to opt for a size up from their normal length. Our tallest tester, at 5'10", wished we had tested the 180-centimeter length. That being said, our shortest tester, at 5'4" also wanted the same — but she packs a ton of energy into her tiny form!

Carving Performance


One of the most impressive aspects of this ski is how easily you can engage the edge and carve a beautifully clean arc — despite the slightly obese waist of 106 millimeters.


We couldn't believe how much fun we could have on such a fat ski on groomed runs! We found that when we made an effort to flip the ski over quickly, it responded well and rewarded us handsomely for getting a higher edge angle earlier in the turn. When you push it to engage earlier, it can feel like it has a tighter turn radius than 18m. We were thrilled with the rebound it provided when you pressure and then release it just the right moment. It feels like it springboards you into the next turn.

We loved how the Soul 7 tipped and ripped on-piste, and rebounded us...
We loved how the Soul 7 tipped and ripped on-piste, and rebounded us into our next flowing arc.
Photo: Scott Rokis

While this ski loves to carve when demanded, it is also happy to skid and butter its way through tight trees, and this versatility mesmerized us. This model came out close to the top of the pile in the carving metric, but it also happily released its edges and pivoted whenever we asked it to.

Charging over pow on the Soul 7, our tester Holly Moseley gets a...
Charging over pow on the Soul 7, our tester Holly Moseley gets a face-full of the good stuff.
Photo: Scott Rokis

Powder Performance


As the winner of the "Best in Powder" category in previous reviews, we expected this ski to charge in the deep, and it did not disappoint. Given its enormously rockered and spatula-style tips, it's no surprise that this beauty glides above any texture of fresh snow.


The chubby midsection of the Soul 7 allows the skier to maintain lift in deeper snow and butter the skis into the direction of her choosing. It is burly enough to plow through cruddy snow, but also pliable enough to bend in light powder.

These skis are built for soaring on top of deep snow, and we loved...
These skis are built for soaring on top of deep snow, and we loved them for how they helped us fly over the soft stuff.
Photo: Scott Rokis

The Soul 7 solidly beat out all the competition in this particular category. There is really no comparison when it comes to powder performance. given its wider waste and substantial rocker.

The Soul 7 suffers very little deflection in crud.
The Soul 7 suffers very little deflection in crud.
Photo: Scott Rokis

Crud Performance


Something magical happened when Rossignol incorporated their Air Tip Technology and weaved the Carbon Alloy Matrix through these boards. The deflection we previously felt from the tips in the crud virtually disappeared. Instead, we found ourselves bombing fearlessly through whatever the mountain tossed at us — churned up powder, avalanche debris, breakable crust down into elephant snot below, chundery death cookies, and even wind-scoured sastrugi.


The Soul 7 has certainly improved vastly in recent years. There were many strong competitors in this category this season, with many skis reaching for the top slot. This is one area in which the softer skis sit at the bottom of the pack; they will do alright in gentler crud, but if you want to charge it's worth trying something a tad stiffer.

Our testers all loved getting this ski airborne; it launches easily...
Our testers all loved getting this ski airborne; it launches easily and provides a stable platform for landings.
Photo: Scott Rokis

Playfulness


We had a blast popping off of moguls, small jumps, and little rock drops on the Soul 7. This ski is light enough to get airborne with ease, and it creates a solid platform for landing.


We found that we could get this ski to bend easily and that it had had a fun rebound when we released the pressure. It's surprising that a ski with such bulk could be so giddy, but it won us over in this metric as well.

Holly rides the waves of joy that the liveliness of the Rossi...
Holly rides the waves of joy that the liveliness of the Rossi brought us all.
Photo: Scott Rokis

The skis which performed really well in crud, due in part to their stiffness, also seem to have a bit of a stiff upper lip when it came to playfulness. Not so for the Soul 7. Despite its ability to cruise through chunder, it also was the life of the party in the park and in the air.

The tapered tip and tail shape will allow you to pivot through the...
The tapered tip and tail shape will allow you to pivot through the bumps more easily than on other models.
Photo: Scott Rokis

Bumps Skiing Performance


With the zippy and quick-to-turn nature of the Soul 7, it is no slouch in the moguls. However, it is still always going to act a bit like a bull in a china shop in delicate and precise terrain like the bumps.


Most women will want to select a larger size in this ski than they are accustomed to skiing, due to the extreme rocker at the fronts, which brings the skiable edge back quite far. Thus, when you take these massive planks into the moguls, they are going to feel slightly more cumbersome than a more traditional ski that might be easier to maneuver in tight spaces.

The Soul 7 is an ideal powder ski, but it offers strength in all...
The Soul 7 is an ideal powder ski, but it offers strength in all environments. It can be one-ski quiver, with bonus powder day potential!
Photo: Scott Rokis

Value


At a loftier retail cost, the Soul 7 isn't shy about its worth. Because this model packs so much versatility into a potential one-ski quiver, we think it's worth every penny. We would think of it as buying a powder ski with benefits.

Get out and splash into the deep with the Soul 7.
Get out and splash into the deep with the Soul 7.
Photo: Scott Rokis

Conclusion


So much sprightlier than you would envision given its weight and width, the Soul 7 surprised us at every turn, literally. It sailed smoothly on top of powder and wind-buff, cruised through chop, and laid down beautiful tracks when we got back to the groomer at the bottom. It popped around like a (predictable) jack-in-the-box and was so fun to get airborne. Despite its bulkiness in the bumps, it is still nimble enough to compete in the moguls. If you are a ripping chick who wants a new all-terrain vehicle or are hoping to become one, the Rossignol Soul 7 might be your new Soul Mate.

Renee McCormack