“The better the waves, the better this board gets”
“The ride is quite planted but gives good control at the top end”
“The tail feels a little loose and slidey in softer waves – you need a steeper section to get the grip and then it carves really well”
There’s no doubt that this is an absolutely stunning looking board. With its gloss rails and polished bottom finish it really does look a classy product, and one that you’d be very proud to own. As usual with Fanatic the quality of fittings is equally impressive – the Quad TE sports decent G10 Choco fins and some of the best footstraps in the business.
The Fanatic is one of the longer boards in the group at 223cm and one of the narrowest at 55cm. Tail width is middle of the group at 33.7cm, while the weight is pretty respectable at 7.45kg complete. Bear in mind that the Fanatic has the highest quoted volume (79L), so this might have some effect on the weight also.
Similar to our findings with the 86L NewWave Twin, this board feels smaller than its quoted volume. It fits perfectly into this 75L test and works best with a sail range of 3.7- 5.0m, and will take a 5.3 at a push in cross-shore conditions. In a straight line the Fanatic is the most planted of all the quads. It sits quite low in the water, which gives it a slightly less exciting feel but more control at the top end.
Having sailed it in everything from knee-high chop to logohigh glassy down-the-line, it becomes clear that this board has been designed around proper waves. When you look at the Fanatic range it kind of makes sense, as they have their twin for ‘hot-dogging’ in smaller onshore conditions.
That’s not to say that the Fanatic Quad is bad in onshore – far from it in fact. It is a little more sedate than most in a straight line, but on the wave it has a very loose and slightly soft, forgiving feel to it. The bottom turn is very secure and doesn’t take as much effort to initiate as some of the other boards (such as the JP for instance), but it also isn’t quite as agile as the RRD or Tabou (or for that matter the Fanatic Twin).
The turns get better with the steepness of the wave. In a softer wave the top turn can lack a bit of grip, and often becomes a slide rather than a carve. But the steeper the wave becomes the more grip the board gets, and when it grips it carves with an impressively tight arc.
Which brings us to this board’s forte – cross-shore conditions. In proper cross-shore waves this board really is something special. In a similar way to the Quatro, it feels like it is running at tick-over in the onshore stuff, but face it into a proper wave and the hammer goes down. In a full-speed bottom turn there’s a huge amount of grip, drive and security – as much as you’ll ever need. You can really bank the board in as hard as you like no matter how fast you’re going. Off the top you can throw it through the turn with huge amounts of grip and control. It also gets good kick for aerials and a lot of control in the slide when you want it to break out. The Fanatic scored top of this group (jointly with the Quatro) for proper crossshore wave conditions, and for good reason – it’s awesome!
The Fanatic’s strength is cross-shore conditions, where nothing is able to top it. In onshore conditions it holds its own, but you may be better with the NewWave Twin if you want a more playful, loose feel and tight turning on softer onshore waves. The Quad does have better wind range though, and is therefore likely to make a better ‘one board solution’. The graphics and finish are fantastic – a true object of desire!
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