Picking a binding can be tough! They look similar and when you take a closer look at the specs, you often get overwhelmed with fancy words that doesn’t really describe what´s in the package. So let me point out the differences between two of the best selling bindings in Burton´s range: the Cartel vs Malavita.
Burton Cartel vs Malavita
When you stick with Burton´s recommendation, …
… you can ride every binding in every terrain. Their bindings are also quite close to each other when it comes to their FLEX, so it really is down to your personal preference.
The Cartel has a slightly more responsive set up while the Malavita is put a little bit into the freestyle section. Nothing is set in stone here but that already can help you with your decision – more responsive means a better set up for slopes and backcountry, a softer binding is more forgiving in the terrain park.
A great and unique feature on the Malavita…
… is the Heelhammock. This mash is built in the highback, wraps around your heels and locks them in securely – even if you want to ride your straps a bit more loose!
They also offer a winged highback on the black/white version. This version of the highback gives you extra support on the outer side of your leg, preventing you from overpressing your tip or tail. Quite a specific feature and probably not needed for the majority of riders out there – but for some it can be a gamechanger! Like I said, it only comes on the black/white version of the Malavita.
EST or Re:Flex? …
… that is up to you. Both, the Cartel and the Malavita, are available with the Re:Flex as well as the EST baseplate. In case you hear that for the first time, I wrote an article about the differences between the two baseplates. The short version: EST bindings are specifically designed for Burtons very own mounting system and don´t fit on any other board. Click here to find out more!
The differences in every single part of the binding
Same brand, same systems. You can get both bindings with the more traditional Re:Flex disc which will fit on every board out there. In case you you have a Burton snowboard, you might be interested in the EST version – check out this article to find out more about the differences between EST and Re:Flex.
The Cartel and the Malavita are quite close when it comes to their flexibility. The Cartel has a slightly more responsive set up, while the Malavita is a little bit more forgiving. The heelhammock on the Malavita gives you also the option to ride your straps more loose which of course results in more flexibility.
Cartel – 45 % composite material for more response
Malavita – 30% composite material for more tweak and pop
Cartel – one-piece highback with a canted design and adjustable forward lean
Malavita – built-in mash that wraps around your heels to lock them in position, canted design with adjustable forward lean. On the black/white version you get the winged highback for extra support that prevents overpressing.
You can ride every Burton binding with 0° forward lean if you like!
Cartel – a new version of the Hammockstrap, an ankle strap that is made of one piece and a material that stays soft in the coldest temperatures. That means great comfort while no stitches that can become loose.
Malavita – asymmetrical Hammockstrap which is very similar to the one on the Cartel, but you can switch them from your front foot to the back foot and vice versa. In that way, you can change from a more supportive to a more playful set up.
Cartel – Burton´s smooth glide buckles which slide in super easy. Solid, durable and do what they are supposed to do.
Malavita – Burton´s double take buckles featuring insta-click, the best buckles Burton has in their range. Special because they have two rows of teeth: One helical one that crank down your straps faster, one that holds the strap in place. Check out the video below!
Same same – but different?
Not really – lot´s of similarities but also features that result in two different bindings.
With the Cartel you get one of the best selling bindings, not only in Burtons range, but throughout the market. Great performance for everyone who want´s a solid binding that copes with every terrain. Mount a Cartel on your board and you will be happy – lot´s of riders are.
The Malavita has some nice extras, but you have to shake out some extra dollars. If you like to spend time in the terrain park, the Malavita might be the better option or, generally speaking, you simply get a more advanced binding that tends to feel a bit more playful than the Cartel.
Check out my full-length articles about the two bindings, click here for the Cartel, and this way for the Malavita. I really hope this article helps you making your decision or simply provides some interesting and useful informations.
Please feel free to drop any questions or thoughts in the comments below, I will get back to you! Let us know what you ride, like and share if you want!