Skiing is one of the most demanding but rewarding sports available. It asks a lot of power and balance from your legs, but the return is an adrenaline-fueled ride straight down a mountain at full speeds! The more you ski, the more you realize you love it all, so you're hunting through the best all mountain skis reviews to find the right pair for you! This led you to our Rossignol Soul 7 HD review after seeing the Rossignol Soul 7 HD skis end up on several lists.
This review will give you a full picture of these skis and tell you how they compare to their competition, the Salomon X-Drive All Mountain Skis. They will also pit these skis against some other popular Rossignol skis, the Rossignol Experience 100 Open All Mountain Ski.
Rossignol Soul 7 HD Review
The flex pattern of the Soul 7 HD skis is pretty great. The tips are about 4.5, with 6 to 7 shovels. The piece in front of the tow is 8.5 to 9.5 and the underfoot is 10. Behind the heel, the piece is 9.5 to 9, and the tails are 8.5 to 8.
The tips on the Rossignol Soul 7 HD are softer than previous versions of the ski models, and this difference is definitely noticeable. The tip has an entirely dimpled section.
Below the dimples, though, the ski widens out quite a bit and the dimpled tails aren’t as soft as the tips at all. The soft tip creates a little bit of a hinge point in the ski’s flex, but nothing unmanageable. Still, it’s enough to give the Salomon X-Drives the edge over them as a slightly better flex pattern for all mountain skiing.
The Rossignol Experience has a much more stout flex pattern. The tail is stiff and the tips are as well. These distinctions may be subtle, but the stiffer tails and softer shovels are much more pronounced on the snow. These are great skis, but we like the Soul HD a bit better for all mountain performance.
The newer models of the Soul 7 HD got narrower but still keep the wide underfoot. The extra trim gives it a bit more versatility for all mountain performance, but it's still not as good at it as the Salomon X-Drive, which has perfectly proportioned dimensions for all mountain experiences that don't sacrifice pop and playfulness!
Construction and Mount Point
The Soul 7 HD has a gorgeous construction. The art is lovely and it's got the best finish quality of any of the Rossignol skis. Even the Salomon barely keeps up with this design.
The cool thing that both Rossignol skis have over the Salomon is the Air Tip 2.0 designs. This structure was 3D fabricated, and it's lighter, stronger, and more integrated into the ski as a whole.
The Salomon’s are able to hold their own, though. Their simple design makes them ideal for maneuverability and terrain adaptation.
They include a patented C/FX layer that uses flax to dampen the experience over all terrains, which is a very unique construction that serves the skis well.
Their full sandwich sidewalls allow for both stability and precision while gripping smoothly in ski to snow contact.
The Rossignol Soul 7 skis have a pretty traditional mount, with a recommendation of -10.15 cm from the center of the ski. This is a definite change from older models, which had multiple mount points that were much closer to the center.
The Salomon X-Drives have a very similar mount point. They recommend -10.0 cm from the center for the mounting. The Rossignol Experience skis follow the recommended line as well. This makes all 3 skis very similar in terms of mount points, but for all-mountain skiing, the Salomon stays a bit closer to center.
Weight and Stability At Speed
The Soul 7 HDs are pretty average in terms of a 50/50 ski in this weight class. They measure 2030 and 2039 grams. They’re heavier than a lot of options, but the Air Tip technology still makes them lighter than a lot of other options. It certainly follows the trend towards all-mountain skis getting extremely light.
The Salomon X-Drive skis are 2131 and 2141 grams, making them a little heavier than the Soul 7 skis. The Rossignol Experience skis are unique because both of them weigh 2036 grams, instead of one ski being heavier than the other. Overall, the Salomon and the Rossignol Soul 7 skis are more traditionally weighted, and the heavier skis will perform a bit better in trickier terrains while the lighter ones will float well.
When it comes to stability at speed, the Rossignol skis both rely on the Air Tip 2.0 technology. They claim that it reduces weight without hindering stability. While it's true that these tips make the skis very lightweight, it's unfortunately also true that their stability drops at speed.
These tips start to chatter and the Salomons are definitely much more stable underfoot than either of the Rossignols. On groomers with soft snow, the ROssignols can race wonderfully but in any other terrain, use caution when bringing these skis to speed.
When it comes to performance in the sluff, the Soul 7 does really well. The same lightweight tips that cause the stability at speed to falter work brilliantly in this condition, making it really easy to float through softer snow. It's easy to initiate turns and the progressive flex with the substantial tip slows them down well in steep and soft pockets to kick up waves of white fluff. The Salomons do well in sluff, too, but this is the category where Rossignol construction truly excels.
When it comes to carving, the Rossignol Soul 7 HD skis are in the middle of the pack. They’re great for laying them on edge in soft snow, but when te snow starts to become firm or uneven, they don’t hold their edge nearly as well as the Salomon X-Drive skis do.
They're better than the Salomons when it comes to carving quick turns at a short radius, which is no surprise given Rossignol's background with racing skis. The Rossignol Experience does even better at carving than the Souls because the racing background is extremely clear in this construction.
You can still have fun on the edge in carving with the Rossignol Soul 7 HDs, but you need to be mindful of the conditions because they only perform very well in specific circumstances. The Salomons can carve well in nearly any terrain, so they take the victory here.
The Rossignols also leave much to be desired when it comes to skiing through crud. The aggressive tip chatter that shows up at high speeds also appears in the refrozen snow. It is not recommended to try skiing the crud after snow freezes overnight after melting in the sun.
These aren’t completely incompetent, because the chatter doesn’t appear on the underfoot. The skis were damp enough underfoot to absorb a lot of the vibrations the chatter kicked up. They’re just not quite as good at the Salomon as being completely smooth in crud.
The Soul 7 HD is a clear victor in the powder category. This is the ski condition that these were made for, and even the Salomon can't compete with them in the powdery conditions. Every design element in the ski works together to deliver such an incredible performance that they can give specialty powder skis a run for their money in this category!
The wide rocker tip offers plenty of float and the fat waist is a great platform in the powder. The rockered tails let you release from tue turns even in thicker snow, like what you find in the Sierras.
If the powder is your jam, then stick to the Rossignol Soul HDs. If you like an all mountain performance, the Salomon X-Drives can still deliver plenty of playfulness in the powder, they're just not as obviously designed for this specific type of skiing.
The fun powder experience extends into the overall playfulness of the Rossignol skis. The skis are lightweight, which makes them much easier to swing and spin when you’re in the air. They have enough tail rocker to ski switch, although their rear mount makes it a bit more difficult to do this than the Salomons do, and they’re not a true twin tip ski. They offered plenty of fun in the softer snow, but the harder stuff wasn’t great.
The Salomon's have an amazing playfulness. Their core pops well for higher jumps and more spins, and they're damper so the landings are much softer than with the Rossignol skis.
We recommend the Salomon skis as a bit more playful than the Rossignol, but it was a very close call.
The Rossignol Soul 7 HD skis are not great with bumps. They can get you down the mogul runs you pick but they aren't great at bashing through bumps and your knees will definitely feel the ride.
Both the Soul 7 HD and the Experience 100 skis are too long for bumps. They feel pretty clunky when they go through troughs. The low swing weight makes bump riding possible because you can get the tips around the moguls, but the underfoot width undoes this benefit.
The Salomon X-Drives manages to be the perfect ski for the job. They can handle pretty much any type of bump skiing you throw at them, even if you like zipping under the ski lifts! We highly recommend these skis.
All 3 skis are fantastic options, but the Salomon X-Drives are still the best option or all mountain skiing. The Soul 7 HD excels in powder, but in nearly every other category the Salomon X-Drives outpace them.