I have flown both kites. The Best was my first kite but now ride the Epic LTD. Flew the 2009 Best HP12m. Here is what I have to say.
Epic gets you higher. I found it initially pulls you fast and higher from the water.
Epic has more hang time but I have had big floaty jumps with the hp, just not as high. This may also be due to expirience. With the bar in the ltd deffinalty seems to hold you in the air longer.
- soft landings
Both kites offer soft landing. That really comes down to the rider sheeting in are stearing the kite at the right time.
- wind range
My epic i have flown in conditions from 18 to 33mph. (weight 215lb) If the winds are consistent at 30+ ill usually drop down in size. The best was a larger kite but I remember having to switch kites more often to get the right size when flying bests. I am now down to 2 kites.
- stability and gusts handling
This is hard to compare since i believe it comes down to skill. I learned most of my kiting on hp's and so to me it handles gusts really well. Gusts would come through adn pull harder but you could sheet out or just edge harder to avoid being dragged downwind. Not sure about the ltd as most of the flying was done in consistent winds.
Overall I enjoy the Epic more. Bigger wind range, more power, Boosts big. It is hsaped more like a C kite and loops super fast!!