Here at the HobbyKraze, we ogle and drool over the performance of beautifully made wakeboards.
But I’ve to be honest, the quest for finding a dream wakeboard is an ongoing and evolving endeavor.
Just as every wake is different, so is every wakeboard.
Boat wakeboards, hybrid rocker wakeboards, cable boards, three-stage rocker wakeboards-the list goes on and on.
And with each board, every slightest differentiation in shape, outline, fin set up affects how the wakeboard ultimately feels and rides.
This is why we’re quite selective when picking wakeboard brands.
O course, I understand brand shouldn’t be the only thing to consider when selecting a wakeboard, but it’s also true that some brands go above and beyond with their products.
I’m pretty sure you’ve come across brands such as Hyperlite, Ronix, and Slingshot. These are just some of the established brands in the wakeboarding market- there’re other brands to consider.
The good news is, we’ve taken the liberty of rounding up some of the rad wakeboard brands that you’ll love.
We’re sure you’ll love our picks and even consider getting one of your wakeboards from our listed brands.
But before I share the list with you, let’s first see what wakeboarding is for the sake of the newbies in the house.
What is Wakeboarding?
Wakeboarding is an extreme sport performed on water.
It’s essentially a combination of three sports: surfing, skiing, and snowboarding.
In wakeboarding, the rider is fastened to a specific wakeboarding board. They’re then towed behind a motorboat or jet ski at a speed of about 30 miles per hour.
But the simplest way to describe wakeboarding is that it’s a combination of three sports:
1) Water skiing: This is because the rider is essentially skiing across the surface of the water. Only that riders use one board instead of two.
2) Surfing: Wakeboarders can “ride the waves” on a single board, although they’re towed by a boat and have a rope to hold onto.
3) And finally, snowboarding because the rider uses a single board to maneuver swiftly across the water, much like someone would on snow.
With a combination like this, it’s not a surprise that the original name for wakeboarding was actually “skurfing.”
What Makes a Wakeboard Brand Good?
Now that we know what wakeboarding is, let’s see what makes the best wakeboard brands.
The answer to this question is a bit subjective, and there’s no right answer.
What you may value most in a wakeboard brand may not necessarily be at the top of my priorities, so it’s hard to point out the best wakeboarding brand.
For example, some riders value where the wakeboard is manufactured, and some want something that looks cool.
But that said, in this post, we’ll be touching on some of the most important elements that helped me choose the best wakeboard brand.
Some of the important elements to consider include:
1) Quality and Durability of their products
The best wakeboard brands have a reputation for making quality wakeboards.
Their wakeboards are state-of-the-art products that will take on anything you throw at them without breaking.
They’re equally up to any task and are performance-oriented, so they can accommodate the needs of even the most experienced wakeboarders.
2) Variety of Design Option
Reputable wakeboarding brands have a variety of wakeboards in their stable.
Their wakeboard catalog is vast, and this is necessary to suit the needs of every wakeboarder.
S0, whether you’re a newbie, intermediate or expert wakeboarder, you can always find the right board for you in the best wakeboard brands.
You also need to consider how long a wakeboard brand has been in the market.
I tend to favor brands that have been long enough in the market as it shows they’re already doing something great.
They’ve also gained the experience of creating the best wakeboards.
However, don’t discount the newcomers yet.
Some entry board companies really have what it takes in terms of quality and performance. But you need to be extra careful with these.
4) Country of Origin
It’s a good idea to consider where the company is based and where the manufacturing plants are based.
For example, in countries like the US, products need to adhere to strict and thorough quality requirements and tests before getting released into the market.
The same case for some of the European Nations such as Germany and the UK.
But the same can’t be said for other countries.
5) How much the company supports riders
Consider how much a wakeboard brand supports riders and the general wakeboarding industry.
Do they have a workplace program for voluntary endeavors or team projects to help the community?
A brand that participates in such programs shows that it already has its customers’ interest in mind, which is ultimately reflected in the products they manufacture.
But always keep in mind that no wakeboard company is perfect. Each brand has their strengths and weaknesses, and at the end of the day, it’s hard to satisfy everyone.
Nevertheless, all the brands listed in the section below create products that will last longer and ride well.
Table of Contents
The Best Wakeboard Brand For The Money
#1 Hyperlite - Editor's Choice
We’ll start the list of the best wakeboarding brands with a pioneer in wakeboard manufacturing-Hyperlite.
It’s one of the trusted brands, and if you’ve ever owned or ridden a wakeboard, there’s a high chance you used the Hyperlite wakeboard.
One thing I love about this brand is it offers a whole range of wakeboard products.
Aside from wakeboards, they also offer other supporting gear such as life vests, wakeboard ropes and handles, and even apparel such as body gloves.
Their wakeboards are also some of the most versatile options, catering to a wide range of users of different skill levels.
What Makes Hyperlite Stand Out?
Numerous aspects make Hyperlite the go-to brand.
One, as we mentioned earlier, Hyperlite is a pioneer in the game. They’ve been manufacturing boards for over three decades.
So, they’ve such a wealth of experience in manufacturing and don’t take chances when creating wakeboards that last and perform.
The other thing is, Hyperlite’s boards are ultra-lightweight. Perfect beginner wakeboards.
A Hyperlite wakeboard won’t fatigue you in the water and is easy to maneuver.
Another great attraction with Hyperlite is their wakeboard bindings. Although they offer traditional bindings, no other brand offers the “System” bindings.
The system binding resembles the snowboard bindings, and they’re nice for the cable park wakeboarders.
They don’t require riders to take the entire boot every time a rider falls; instead, all they’ve to do is simply loosen the strap and step out.
In the big scheme of things, Ronix is still a new entrant in the best wakeboard brands.
However, they’ve not taken long to prove their worth, and today, they’re at the pinnacle in the wakeboarding community.
Ronix is also considered a leader, and many brands look up to them for inspiration.
For wakeboarders, Ronix has no shortage of high-quality wakeboards that deliver a quality boat riding experience.
What Makes Ronix Stand Out?
Like Hyperlite, I love Ronix’s bindings.
My Ronix wakeboard may change, but one thing that remains constant is the binding- binding from Ronix.
My greatest attraction to their binding is their simplicity.
They’re quite modest in design, but they don’t fail to perform.
The Ronix bindings are well made, reliable, and can hold up to rough usage. They’re comfortable too, and I can wear them for extended periods without feeling fatigued.
That said, the rest of the gear is equally up to the task.
Their best wakeboards are reliable, easy to use, and have what it takes to deliver a wonderful riding experience.
They’re versatile, too, as Ronix makes an array of wakeboards to cater to all types of riding styles, whether behind the boat or cable park.
#3 Liquid Force
Liquid Force is an old hand in wakeboard manufacturing.
They came into the market in the ’90s and remain as one of the dominant forces.
As a brand, Liquid Force conjures up a laid-back feel that is all about fun on the water. They’re also known for promoting fun events and sponsoring water sports activities.
As with our top two wakeboard brands, Liquid Force has a long list of products in its manufacturing line. Aside from wakeboards, they specialize in binding, life jackets, and even fun gear like party floats.
What Makes Liquid Force Stand Out?
Art is part of Liquid’s Force DNA.
This brand is known for their fun artworks on its boards. Their board designs are inspiring and incredible to look at.
Their distinct style stands out in the water and may be a great option for those who want something truly unique.
In fact, they even have an “artists series” of boards consisting of boards with special designs from different artists.
Liquid’s Force lineup is also pretty versatile and is filled with diverse designs ranging from the funky boards, classic Fish line up to the amazing Asym Noodle wakeboards.
Simply put, Liquid Force is an amazing brand, with their signature wakeboards taking their popularity to new levels.
Liquid Force boards are modeled as funboards and are great for partying and fun-filled expeditions.
Slingshot is relatively new in the world of wakeboarding.
They were primarily a kitesurfing brand, but they’ve now expanded their board-building skills and technology to wakeboarding.
Now, they have a huge catalog of wakeboards and other gear.
The brand made a name for itself as the popularity of the wakeboard cable parks grew.
Slingshot boards are reliable and can take a beating. Aside from durability, Slingshot’s boards are known for flexibility, so they’re a great pick for boat riders who need to hit ramps and slide rails.
While their lineup is mostly made up of wakeboards, they’re continually expanding their offerings to include foil boards, binding and life jackets.
Their passion comes from satisfying riders, and it’s not a surprise they seem to offer the best value for their purchase.
What Makes Slingshot a Standout?
A common feature among all the Slingshots wakeboards is flex.
Their boards became popular in cable parks because of their unmatched flex.
The other unique feature was their wooden construction.
It was especially one of a kind in the beginning, and it has now taken hold, and many brands are now using wood core.
Still, Slingshot remains the true pioneer for the wood core and for popularizing this material.
They continue to push the popularization of the wooden core, and one of their best-selling options, the Slingshot Space Mob, justifies the benefits of a wooden wakeboard.
It’s extra durable, and with the addition of a polyurethane strip, it simply bounces back instead of cracking when dinged.
Plus, it has a softer flex, so it supports softer landings, while its continuous rocker profile lets you ride for long without fatigue.
Overall, Slingshot is an amazing brand with awesome boards, and their boards are a must-have for riders who want to have fun and press the tricks with some style.
O’Brien is a staple in active water sports.
They made their way into the water sports industry through their water skis.
Now, they’ve a large repertoire consisting of wakeboards, water skis, water rafts, kneeboards, and so much more. But they tend to focus on beginner wakeboards.
What Makes O’Brien a Standout?
One, it’s because of the variety and depth of what they provide.
I love products from this brand because they also offer entry-level bundle options for riders on a budget.
Secondly, they carry a range of options in terms of the skill and type of riders they can accommodate.
O’Brien offers park-specific wakeboards from beginners, intermediate riders, and expert riders.
But as we mentioned earlier, O’Brien boards are skewed towards the beginners. In particular, I love their O’Brien System 140 Beginner Wakeboard Package. It’s a great beginner wakeboard that comes complete with everything newbies need for wakeboarding.
O’Brien System’s continuous profile is handy for better control and improved performance, while the molded-in fins provide improved maneuverability.
Overall, O’Brien is a great entry-level brand, thanks to their beginner and budget-friendly boards.
At the same time, they also have pre-made wakeboards and binding bundles for their wakeboards.
Humanoid is the underdogs in our bundle because they’re a relatively small, rider-owned brand.
But don’t underrate the brand.
It gives the established brands a run for their money as it’s known for its exceptional quality for all their products.
Like the Slingshot, Humanoid also relies on a wooden core for their wakeboards.
This means their products are lively and fun, thanks to the added flex.
Humanoid products are also reliable and will stand up to abuse and rough use without breaking. In fact, the brand has several cable-park-focused wakeboards to back up its durability claim.
What Makes Humanoid Standout?
One of the main attractions to Humanoid is they’re the only wakeboarding company that offers a trial on the boards. How cool is that?
On the website, they claim to offer a 30-day trial for their board. They send you the wakeboard, and if you don’t like it, you send it back.
It’s an amazing benefit considering wakeboard preferences are a personal thing, so it’s cool they offer the trial.
Secondly, Humanoid is the place to go if you’re looking for a professional-quality and custom-made wakeboard built.
Again, a few of the wakeboard brands will allow you to design and order a custom board. Yeah, that’s right-everything from the shape, color, art, design to the amount of flex.
Of course, you’ll pay a premium, but you get a wakeboard built for you and you alone at the end of the day.
Finally, Humanoid is quite generous with information, as they’ve a ton of great information on the website and provide personal advice about their board lineup on how to choose the right wakeboard for you.
Overall, Humanoid might be a great company for those looking for a tailor-made wakeboard.
Also, it’s a great avenue for riders who feel the need to support a small and growing company built by passionate people.
#7 Connelly/ CWB
Connelly is primarily a water ski manufacturer, but they’ve expanded their lineup to include wakeboards.
They’ve been in the game for the longest, since the 60′.
But having been in the industry for so long, it shows they’re doing amazing work.
The brand has a solid lineup of quality boards, and it’s not a surprise that pro riders use their decks.
And with a wealth of experience in wakeboard manufacturing, they offer quality and long-lasting wakeboards.
What Makes Connelly Stand Out?
One of Connelly’s greatest attributes is they’ve a good lineup of wakeboards. Most are budget-friendly and perfect for beginners.
The brand also tailors’ wakeboards in combo packages for beginners, further underlining their usability as an entry-level brand.
Their focused assortment, with a deep history in water skiing, delivers sets of board tailored for boat riding.
The simple and quality options focus on performance and ease of use.
Overall, Connelly is a great brand if you need a cheap wakeboard or any other wakeboard product at a friendly price. And make no mistake, you’ll achieve an incredible wakeboarding experience with a CWB board.
What to Consider When Selecting the Best Wakeboard Brand
If you’re new to wakeboarding, buying from a reputable brand is the safest thing.
This is because the established brands won’t dare taint their names with mediocre products.
That said, you may purchase the wrong wakeboard.
So, besides the brand, you also need to consider several critical wakeboard features that ensure you match a board with your park riding expectations.
Here’re some of the considerations, other than the product’s name;
You can never enjoy your wakeboard if it doesn’t fit your size and taste.
Usually, the size of your wakeboard should be based on your weight and height.
If it’s too short, it becomes unstable, and if it’s too large, it becomes unwieldy and difficult to carry.
But generally, big riders should consider the bigger and longer boards and vice versa.
If you already have bindings, ensure they’re compatible with your wakeboard and that they’re comfortable to wear.
If you’re choosy as I’m considering a wakeboard that uses a material, you like.
For example, brands like Humanoid and Slingshot utilize wooden cores, CWB used closed-cell foam, and Airhead used denier nylon, layered fiberglass, and PVC.
Each brand has strength that characterizes it.
Also, remember some brands live by their missions and reasons for creating their products.
For example, some focus on constant innovations, while other companies focus on creating product design.
Slingshot Sports, for example, centers its operation on unique and lovely graphics. On the other hand, CWB focuses on offering customized products for men, women, and kids.
Ultimately, what you need to do is know the reason why you want to purchase a wakeboard.
Finally, you need to consider what features a board comes with and how they’ll affect your riding style.
For example, consider whether you need molded fins, continuous rockers, removable fins, or even an advanced grid system for the advanced boards.
Best Wakeboard Brands Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: Why should I buy from a famous wakeboard brand?
A: If you know what you need from a wakeboard, you don’t have to buy from a famous brand.
You can choose from the unbranded one.
However, if you’re buying a new wakeboard, consider the branded options. They’re famous for a reason.
This is because customers trust them and they’re reliable.
Q: Is there a difference between cheap and expensive wakeboards?
A: Yes, there’s a difference.
One is the choice of material used.
The cheap boards are compression-molded, so they tend to be slow, cumbersome, and less buoyant. Most of these are beginner wakeboards.
On the other hand, the expensive wakeboards are customized and use quality materials such as polystyrene foam (EPS). They’re also light, buoyant, and maneuverable.
Q: What is the best Wakeboard?
A: The best wakeboards should be performance-oriented, and more importantly, form-fitting.
They should accommodate your weight and size, allowing you to ride effortlessly.
Plus, they should make your overall experience more enjoyable.
And of course, they should also be budget-friendly.
Wrap Up: Our Choice
As we mentioned earlier, no brand is better than the other; each has its strengths and weaknesses.
Secondly, what you value most in a brand isn’t necessarily what the other rider values most. So, it’s mostly a matter of personal preference.
But generally, the brands we’ve listed above happen to be some of the best wakeboard brands in the market.
Ultimately, however, a brand means little provided you get the best wakeboards that suit your needs- it may even be from one of the less known and unrecognized brands.