Best high-tech ski gear for 2022
We've annually produced a roundup of high-tech ski gear. While some products from last year's roundup have been carried over, we've updated the list with several new items for 2022.
The majority of the equipment in the roundup is battery-powered, although not everything has a power component to it. In some cases, we've included items that have high-tech materials or cutting-edge designs.
The GoPro Hero10 is the best single-lens action camera available from GoPro. It's not a big upgrade over the GoProHero 9, which is available for a bit less, but it has a new GP2 chip that allows for high frame rates -- up to 5.3K (5,312 x2,988 pixels) per second. HyperSmooth is the most advanced technology in the world.
The Hero 9 Black features a $499 camera, which is $50 more than the Hero 9's starting price. However, if you buy directly from GoPro.com and sign up for the GoPro subscription service -- which is included with the camera -- GoPro knocks $100 off, so it's $399 (a year of the service, which costs $50 a year or $5 a month, is included for free).
Unlimited cloud backups are available through the subscription service. The service includes discount on GoPro accessories and gear and access to GoPro's premium live streaming platform.
The 360 camera is selling for $430 but is also impressive and some people prefer it to GoPro.
The Go 2 is available at Insta360 for $300.
Nic Henry, a former CNET Senior Video Producer, has reviewed both the Go 2 () and the One X2 ().
The GoPro Hero 9 Black is still on this list, but it's not a big deal, but it is still available for download at 60 fps, which is now around $280. It was a CNET Editors' Choice Award winner two years ago.
The Aleck 006 earpieces slip into your helmet and are used as wireless headphones for listening to music or as a headset for making calls. They feature decent sound but they are similar to that of other Aleck 006 friends and family members.
With real-time GPS tracking in the Aleck Go! app for iOS and Android, you can also map the location of everyone in your party.
Helly Hansen's $750 Elevation Infinity 2.0 technical shell jacket features the company's, its new waterproof, windproof, yet breathable material that it claims is "the first-to-market to be made entirely without added chemicals." waterproof jackets are chemically treated but Helly Hansen says the Infinity's "everlasting water repellent protection never needs to be reproofed with chemical treatment after use."
For a shell jacket, it offers great flexibility and doesn't feel stiff. Though it's a three-layer fabric design that offers some warmth, it's not insulated so in very cold temperatures you'd need to wear another jacket underneath it, like the ($400).
The Elevation Infinity 2.0 comes in black, grey, and orange, as well as its Life Pocket Plus, which uses Aerogel insulation to keep your phone from getting too cold, while preserving its battery.
The Marauder Elite is Spy's latest and greatest goggle, which has 60% more venting over the similarly priced Spy Ace goggle (another highly vented model). That makes it "nearly impossible to fog," according to the company.
These are over-the-glasses goggles (OTG), which is "scientifically tuned" to increase mood and alertness while optimizing color and contrast.
They're a nice pair of goggles, but Spy has been having trouble keeping them in stock.
When your phone gets too cold, it's charging faster, and if it's really cold, it might shut off. That's why the comes in.
The Phoozy is a simple sleeve for smartphones, as well as a small amount of velcro, which keeps your phone warm during extra hot days. It will also keep your phone from overheating.
Phoozy pouches come in several sizes and variants and start at $30. Always select one that's big enough to fit your phone.
Seirus' Kinetic heat return system allows you to increase body heat 4-5 degrees and returns it to you for 20% more warmth. Of course, how warm your hands are will depend on how warm the gloves are that go over them (they can be used as stand-alone gloves but more for running in cold weather than skiing).
After a day of shredding, your body will certainly appreciate a little percussion massage gun action. There are plenty of options available, but we prefer Theragun Mini, which won't weigh your luggage too much, and it is a great little massage gun for $199 that is super powerful for its size.
Theragun Mini, as well as the, is equipped with Quiet Force technology, which allows the device to operate as efficiently as possible, while keeping the battery for 150 minutes of continuous use.
The Theragun Mini isn't compatible with all other devices, but it does it with a standard ball head. You might buy a la carte, since the Mini is compatible with all the same attachments that come with other models, but it increases the price.
Why not get a virtual one? Private lessons have become really expensive, therefore why not get a virtual one?
This is a digital ski coach that combines hardware that you attach to your boots with an iOS app (Android coming soon) that delivers real-time feedback about how you're skiing.
I'm still waiting to try this out, but initial reviews have been positive, and the software has recently been upgraded to version 2.0, as well as some minor hardware enhancements.
Carv lists for $349, which is much less than what a single full-day private lesson would cost you at most resorts -- at least in the United States.
If you don't want to pay upward of $200 for a set of Smith I/O goggles, there are plenty of more affordable alternatives, including those from Colorado-based.
The big deal is that the Adapt goggles also come with a Photochromatic Flux lens for $129. This is a lens that changes colors according to the lighting conditions you encounter. In other words, the chameleon of lenses and typically photochromatic goggles cost a lot more.
The Smith 4D MAG are the company's current top-of-the-line goggles and have sctually increased from $280 to $320. They feature a wider field of view (25% wider compared to the I/O Mag, according to Smith) and a 5x antifog inner lens that improves fogging. With the MAG system, two levers release the lens, which attaches magnetically to the goggles.
If you wear glasses, the $270 I/O MAG XL is a good choice, although it is quite expensive.
The Smith MAG XL is a new technology that allows photographers to easily swap lenses, as well as a 5x antifog inner lens with AirEvac Integration Technology that helps reduce fogging.
The goggle comes in several different sizes, which is based on ChromoPop lens colors.
Seirus' flagship are available for $425 for men and women, but the battery has not changed for a few years, but it has been upgraded to a more slimmer-down version with increased battery life.
At the low-heat setting you can get up to 12 hours of battery life, with medium pegged at around eight hours and high at four hours.
It's also available in a mitten for.
Smith's Vantage helmet has a visor. It is geared toward snowboarders and free riders, but many mainstream skiers like the sleek look.
Smith's helmet has a great deal of color options, but it's not limited to the colors it uses in previous years. Smith's helmet is made from lightweight polymer extruded tubes that are thermally welded together to provide a stable air flow.
The BOA FS360 fit system (with a 360-degree halo design) is making it easier to open and close the strap.
The helmet comes in a, which provides greater protection. In a MIPS Brain Protection System, the shell and the liner are separated by a low-friction layer that "allows the helmet to slide relative to the head."
Spy Helm Tech sunglasses are a modern take on glacier sunglasses that include removable side shields, which prevent both the sun and all "haters" at the same time, according to the company (they turn into standard wayfarer sunglasses without side shields).
For breathability, the company's Happy Tech lens tech is "scientifically tuned" to enhance mood and alertness while improving color and contrast.
True or not, I will say they work well, the optics were excellent, and I was actually happy with them.
The majority of new phones, including the iPhone 13 models, offer a decent level of water-resistance, but Lifeproof still sells its waterproof and shockproof Fre case-- and the latest version is designed for MagSafe accessories.
The Fre case is also available for some Samsung Galaxy models, but it does not feature MagSafe, which adds $10 to the case.
You don't want your phone to go dead on the mountain, therefore it's always good to pack and recharge it.
Superhero MagLock, a new line of magnetic power banks, is supposedly a real savior. I was impressed by their design. Not only do the batteries come in different capacities, but they have increased coils, which are supposed to help with reducing heat levels while charging.
The 3,000-mAh battery is lightweight and simple, although it does get you a full charge. So you'll probably want to step up to one of the higher-capacity options like the 6,000-mAh model that retails for $60 but is currently being discounted to $40.
You can wirelessly charge Android devices as well as the MagLock, but the hardware will not stick unless you have a metal ring on the back of your phone's case (stick-on rings are available for sale).
The SuperHero MagLock is available in a few colors and has a nice glossy finish. It is currently the best-designed magnetic power bank -- even better than Apple's
The Anker PowerCore Slim 10K PD is impressively slim for a 10,000-mAh portable phone charger (that capacity will allow you to fully charge your phone and a friend's) it is available in USB-C output (it's an input as well) and 12W cahrging speeds via USB-A output are included. A USB-C to USB-C cable is included in the charging party (the latest iPhones include that cable).
The Zeal goggles have excellent optics and a wide field of view, and many feature the company's Rail Lock System that makes the lenses easy to change, and the goggles are quick to vent when you're in hiking mode.
The base models with standard lenses are fairly affordable, ranging from $129 to $159. Things get more expensive when you move to the Automatic Plus GB lens, which is photochromic and changes quickly with the lighting and works in any condition. Add that Automatic Plus lens and the price goes up to $279.
A lot of people love the (on the right in the photo above) which is available for $150 for the Optimum lens (nonphotochromic) of your choice, along with a complimentary Sky Blue Mirror lens.
The (on right) version of the standard two-lens option starts at $179. It has the widest field of view and is an OTG goggle that allows you to wear glasses
The, starting at $130, has a spherical frame that's designed with upper and lower ventilation, triple-layer face foam and is available in a variety of lenses.
The Jaybird sports buds are similar to the original Vista buds, but they have a few upgrades: active noise cancellation and a transparency mode called SurroundSense, which allows you to hear the outside world, a dangerous feature for runners and cyclists (as well as skiers).
The Vista 2 buds have a water-resistance rating of IPX68, which means they are both dust-proof and fully waterproof. Jaybird claims it's sweat-proof, crush-proof, and drop-proof, as well as a splash case.
The Beats Fit Pro's sound is quite impressive as you tweak the EQ settings to your liking, but their sound quality isn't quite as impressive as other premium headphones. Their noise-canceling, transparency mode, and voice-calling are both fine, although they are unspectacular (the Beats Fit Pro performs better in all departments). But if you're buying these, you're buying them for the secure fit and durability.
The Wildcat ($200) is a goggles-sunglasses hybrid developed by Smith. It provides very little eye coverage and good airflow, but it also has the comfort of a more lightweight pair of sunglasses.
Outdoor Technology is one of the few companies that does it (some Chinese companies like Outdoor Master have gotten involved in the game in recent years). Their appeal has remained constant, as is the case with true wireless headphones available at a discounted price (around $90).
You can also create a group with the ODT Walkie-Talkie app and talk to friends who are also using Chips 2.0 headphones. There are also a few groups that can be accommodated in your private group.
The sound quality for Bluetooth was somewhat decent, but it was not that important. That said, it's nice to have your helmet on and headphones built-in without having to worry about wires. Chips are sweat- and water-resistant but not waterproof.
Outdoor Technology also sells the, a true wireless version of the Chips that costs significantly more (about $165)).
This carabiner hook clip comes in a few different sizes and colors and costs around $23.
If you're headed somewhere else without cell service, satellite phones are cheaper to buy, but they are also cheap to use.
Once you purchase the Bivystick ($200), you can activate it anytime for a month for $18, which includes ten credits. One credit equals one message or one location share, one weather report or one hour of tracking.
If you use all ten credits, you'll be charged $0.50 per additional credit used. You can also purchase additional credits before and at a lower rate. If your account remains active, they roll over to the next month. (You can disable service at any time.)
Black Diamond has approved its ($450) as the first ever avalanche beacon on the market to offer Bluetooth capabilities. That Bluetooth connection allows you to manage settings, software updates, and battery optimization from your smartphone using the Pieps mobile app, while the housing has soft-touch contact points for improved handling.
It's a core feature: a 60-meter circular range, a mark and a scan function for multiple burials, and an auto antenna switch that automatically adjusts to send the best signal. There's also a harness-style carry pouch available.
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