The Ski Trab Titan Vario is the pinnacle of performance amongst the race-weight, tech-binding crowd. The toe piece and heel piece are each unique and category-leading. When paired together, they offer an incredible binding that’s capable of being skied harder than anybody thought a sub-200g binding could.
A titanium spring joins the toe-wings and allows them to operate independently of one another. This means the opening force applied to one wing isn’t automatically applied to the other wing like in most traditional toe pieces. This increases retention when skiing bumpy, hard snow so you can feel comfortable pushing harder without the need to lock the toes. The lack of coiled springs also shaves weight while thwarting dangerous ice buildup underneath said springs. This means you have time to take in the view, plot your line, or even eat a few calories while your buddies are still working on clearing the ice from their bindings to ensure proper wing-closure.
The heel pieces appear nondescript but hidden underneath the cap is some pretty impressive hardware that allows the heel piece to rotate 21.5° to either side while applying significant return-to-center force. What this means is you’re able to load the skis up that much harder through rough snow and the heels will continue to snap you back to center while other race heels would have let go. For skiers that ski as hard as they climb, the Titan Vario is without a doubt the binding of choice.
Update 2016/17: There are now three versions with differing spring-strengths: R08, R10, R12. Also the toe lever has been lengthened for easier jaw opening (2.0).
Update 2018/19: A radical change: it's now called the "Titan Vario" instead of "Titan Release."
|Riser Heights||1 + flat|
|Vertical Release||R8, R10, R12|
|Lateral Release||R8, R10, R12|
|Crampon Ready||Yes, removable|
|Materials||Ergal, titanium, steel, plastic|
|Skimo Co Says|
|Notes||Noticeably better retention vs other minimalist designs|
|Bottom Line||Safer than your average race binding|