Snowboard Review: 09-10 Lib Tech Banana Magic

14 Dec, 2009

Location: Loveland, CO

Snow Conditions: Hardpacked to icy conditions on the mountain.

Setup: I rode the Lib Tech Banana Magic with my Force SL bindings and Bonfire Geo boots.

Size: 157cm.

First Impression: Definitely not the loosey goosey feeling of the Skate Banana, Banana Magic is all freeriders version.

Weight: Average

Flex: The Banana Magic is on the stiffer end but it’s still got some playfulness so you can take it into the park.  The stiffer flex came into play on the mountain when pointing it, it’s stiffer than the Skate Banana and in my opinion meant for a freerider who occasionally plays.  Overall it was stiffer, I didn’t notice the flex being too varying longitudinally or torsionally.

Turning: The sidecut didn’t remind me of the park pickle, but it was deeper which made it very fast and easy to turn on the mountain.  Going from edge to edge was no issue on the banana magic, it rallied through carves and you could really hold this board on edge in a carve.  I didn’t notice the sidecut being an issue on longer radius turns, I could still draw it out into those turns and felt comfortable on it.  The MTX helped on the icy sections of the mountain and I never noticed the board going into super mtx mode for me, it was more mellow but gave that grip when I needed it.

Stable: The Banana Magic was very stable with freeriding, the stiffer flex made it charge a lot more than the Skate Banana without feeling squirrely or loose when riding.  Through some choppy/bumpy snow, it absorbed the conditions without getting tossed around on the board.

Pop: It had more pop that I was expecting and really easy to pop ollies and butters with the board.  It’s not as easy as the skate banana when it comes to the playful factor.  I was able to butter and press on it, but wasn’t as easy as the other boards.

Switch: Supposed to be a true twin but when I went into switch riding, it felt a little off than a true twin.  I noticed some difference in how it rode.

Overall Impression: I was told that this board was the freeriders skate banana and I definitely agree after riding it.  For me as a freerider who occasionally does park, it was ideal when it came to stability and carving the mountain but it didn’t let down when I did take it into the park and wanted to butter or pop ollies with it.  It’s meant for more the aggressive rider, I didn’t find it as easy as the Skate Banana and if you hit on this board in the bar, it’d definitely make you work for taking it home.

Shay’s Honesty Box: This board rode more like C2 in how it handled the mountain, it completely got rid of the squirrely feeling that I hated about the Skate Banana and brought out a stiffer all mountain Banana that is for the freerider who also wants to play around with the board.  I definitely liked how it rode and could have spent all day riding it.

Ready to buy? Head over to evo for the 2011 version of the Lib Tech Banana Magic or shop their full line of Lib Tech snowboards

On Snow Photo

Lib Tech Banana Magic description


Review Disclosure: I rode this board at a demo day.

About the author


From the beginning of time, I was Shannon. From the beginning of snowboarding, I was Shay. From the beginning of online communities, I was Shayboarder. In the end, I’m the writer, photographer, editor, publisher, guru of sorts, product tester, curvy girl, and most importantly the snowboarder behind it all. Follow me on this journey through snowboarding, mountain biking, traveling and fun experiences!

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  1. Bob
    December 14, 2009

    Thanks for the review Shay. Been interested in trying out a rockered board for a while but I’m 95% big mountain/freeride and wasn’t really seeing a rockered board that fit the bill for me. I need to demo this one.

  2. dan
    December 14, 2009

    This sounds a lot like my Lib Tech 1986 Mullet in terms of technology and overall feel. This thing charges on the mountain over ice or powder. The rocker is just added fun. No loss of control. Lib Tech makes great gear.

  3. timmy
    December 14, 2009

    Bob, U should check out the premier f1-r. Or if u ever go in the park, check the sl-r

  4. December 14, 2009

    Bob, definitely demo it if you can. There’s a couple reverse camber boards that fit the more freeride/big mountain over this board like the Billy Goat or Premier that are worth checking out as well. Demo would be the best way to see which one works for you.

    Dan, I definitely want to try the snow mullet since I haven’t ridden it.

  5. David (aka Kimchi)
    December 14, 2009

    Sounds interesting, but wtf are “numerically enhanced sidecuts” and “numerically enhanced banana tech”?

  6. wha?
    December 14, 2009

    you never said you “hated” anything about the skate banana…

  7. December 14, 2009

    David, I feel the same way. I wish Mervin would do a better job of being real and actually putting specs on the site…versus marketing mumbo jumbo. Most people always ask if a board is true twin/directional/etc and they don’t even tell you that easily.


    From my Skate Banana review here “The Skate Banana and I have a love/hate relationship. I’ve tried to ride it at demo days but it generally is a board I can’t wait to get off of, so I set out to borrow the board for a day and really get a feel for it to see if I just hated the first impressions of it or if it grew on me after more turns. I didn’t hate it at Copper…but it’s still a board that is not my preference, I prefer the stiffer lib BTX boards.”
    The review goes into deeper detail why i’m not a fan of it.

  8. Andrew
    December 15, 2009

    I love riding on stiff bananas.

  9. Slippy
    December 15, 2009

    I’ve got one, can’t wait to try it. Hurt my knee last week,so missed giving it a go on my day off yesterday.It’s light to handle, and looks great. Still something to look forward too.

  10. Cory
    December 20, 2009

    I copped one of these things and it is the greatest board ive ever owned, period. it truly IS magic…. im an admitted park rat, but at 6’4″ 185 its tough to find a board that works and has the responsive but soft feel all good park boards have. you surrender alot of forgiveness when you get into the 57-59 range. but this board has solved that and then some! I took it through the trees at beaver creek on monday, and i have to say its effortless in the deeps too. super pop, goes exactly where you want it to, presses efforlessly, and i cant wait to get 100 days on this thing under my belt! id reccomend it to everyone, but unless youve got a hookup of some sorts, 700 bucks is too much to pay for a snowboard, period.

  11. Fes
    January 21, 2010

    After reading your review and demoing one, I finally bought one.

    Heh how I wish Lib had this available last season. I went from a beginner’s board (the K2 Anagram season before last) to an advanced freeride board (a Burton T6 last season).

    The T6 definitely gave me confidence on the steep runs but didn’t allow my to play much at all, being one of the stiffest decks around.

    Looking forward to riding the Magic and being able to mess around on the runs. We’ll see how it handles the steeps. 🙂

  12. Bdawg
    January 22, 2010

    Numerically enhanced banana tech refers to the 5mm of rocker/banana between the bindings. It’s the most rocker on any of Lib’s boards.There’s a video of Mike Olson on Youtube at sia last year talking about this board. Don’t know what numerically enhanced sidecut means.

  13. January 22, 2010

    Cory, awesome to hear you are enjoying your banana magic! Definitely agree 700 is too much for a board!

    Fes, let me know how you like it after getting a couple runs on it!

    Bdawg, thanks for the clarification! Funny they decide to put the most rocker on a freeride board.

  14. Elvina
    January 25, 2010

    Hi Shay.
    I’ve just baught the banana magic (157 cm)and i’m going to ride this at very deep snow. (I hope that I’ll meet a great powder at Himalaya)
    But I’m a little bit anxious about my weight (it’s arround 180lbs). Salesman said that it’s ok. But my previous board was Nirto Natural 169.
    So, I don’t know exactly should I take at mountain my Nitro or my new banana magic.
    Could you give me an advice please.
    And excuse my English, I’m from east Europe )))))

  15. Jkm
    February 15, 2010

    Thx for the review Shay. I have one and love it. Your review is spot on. One thing: it is a little chattery at high speeds. Not unstable though. You just need to get used to it.

  16. Andy
    June 02, 2010

    Hi Shay, this might be my next board, however, I’m between sizes and not sure if I should get the 152 or 157. I’m 5’8″, 140 pounds and a high intermediate level.

    I currently have a Lib TRS 154 which feels a little small but I used to have a Burton Custom X 158 which felt too long. I won’t be doing any park, just blue and black resort runs up in Whistler, BC.

    What do you think? Thanks for your time. Peace.