My 8m “lithium” has a large hole in the bladder, so I jumped at the chance to borrow a kite. I’ve flown it for about 10 hours and I always come in with a smile. The Varial-X feels like an extension of my body-I don’t have to think about flying it. It is where it should be, when it should be there. I’ve been riding it in 20 to 30mph winds (I weigh 155lbs). The kite is smooth through the gusts; it reminds me of driving a car with great suspension. The canopy is solid and doesn’t flutter when sheeted out. What is really cool about this kite is how responsively it turns when sheeted out (most kites lose their steering ability when depowered). This allows you to reposition the kite while wave riding without it pulling you off of the face. It also means you can learn to kite loop while safely depowered. The website calls the Varial-X a supported LE C-kite. I call it a well designed kite. This is a beautiful kite. It is like driving a Porsche. Today I traded it back and forth with a different company's latest model kites and it made them feel like they haven't progressed since 2005.
The 2 minute video doesn't show too much, mostly underpowered, but you get some idea of the bar input needed to turnn the kite.
Overall, it is a solid kite. It turns as one, like a bridled kite, not like a C where the canopy flexes more. Turns are immediate though -- no delay, but not twitchy. So, things like riding blind should still be easy.
Not sure about the boost yet as I didn't have the juice.
I like the Varial X 2012 as well, but I was recently involved in an incident that made me a bit doubtful about the Varial X.
I was out in strong wind with my 9m Varial X. The kite was pumped to about 7-7.5 bar. At some points there were gusts that completely deformed the kite. The leading edge was sort of getting bended into a Sigma shape, the wingtips got bended upwards while the centre of the leading edge was bended downwards, it was not funny at all...
I should probably not have been kiting at all in those wind conditions, but I did and I was ok until the kite got deformed. Would be interesting to know if this would have happened to another kite in the same conditions or if it would have helped to pump the kite harder...