With the Mantra being one of the benchmark freeride skis on the market during the last few years, it's tough to see how Volkl can produce something as versatile and exciting that appeals to advanced and expert riders - with the 90Eight though, it seems like they have managed.
Their respective names hint at their characters - the Mantra taking you to places beyond the physical domain and the 90Eight performing like clockwork every time you wind them up. But don't think the 90Eight is soulless, it's far from it and will elevate a skier to a higher plain - who needs yoga when you have powder snow?
In terms of versatility, there are few other skis to match them if you're looking to ride the whole mountain - they carve on piste, fly over chopped up snow, float through powder and suck up moguls. They genuinely seem to have it all and are also more forgiving than many other freeride skis of similar ilk, meaning someone looking to really get into the world of off-piste skiing could progressive comfortably.
There's a multi-layer wood core with tip and tail rocker constructed with Volkl's 3.D ridge - full length sidewalls. They are cambered underfoot, helping to give the responsive and lively feel you get both on and off-piste.
If you're a confident skier looking to improve off-piste and considering a freeride ski that handles everything, then the 90Eight might provide all the numbers you will ever need.