Designed by legendary rider Dimitri Maramenides, this is the ultimate weapon for big jumps, hang-time and unhooked moves. If you're interested in jumping higher, riding faster and escalating every level of your kitesurfing experience, then the Screamer is for you. The experienced rider will enjoy the top end competition-ready performance, while intermediates will appreciate the fast relaunch and effortless turning that makes every session a progress builder. The Screamer the all-access kite for any segment of the sport, from racing to hang-time and unhooked riding.
TEST TEAM NOTES:
The Screamer certainly has board shoulders and is a good looking kite shape with nice swept back wing tips and definitely looks a bit fruity in this colour option. Strikingly vibrant on the beach, the Epic is pretty well put together and well featured. The one pump system operates on fairly skinny tubes and the clips aren't covered, but all the essentials are there and work well. Also simple and functional are the trimming straps that work on a traditional pull-pull webbing system and remain neat and tidy even when fully depowered. Although not the most fancy, everything is strong, durable and easy-to-use, including the chicken-loop which is a good size and is well presented to you when hooking back in, even through there's no self-righting key in the bar.
When you put the kite up it's immediately apparent that you're not going to be short on power. The Screamer flies smoothly and is nice and light at the bar and extremely responsive for a 12 metre. But what this kite is really all about is boosting and float. You get a huge amount of lofty hang-time, behaving something more like a light aircraft than a jumbo jet as it's easy to control above your head and not sloppy at all considering its size. The flight pattern isn't just up and down either; it takes you on a journey and as the boost is very easy to access by sending the kite and pulling down on the bar, it really inspires confidence. You don't lose it above you head either, it just sits there with you but is always ready to be redirected quickly for landing. You can see that Dimitri inspired this kite as you feel more inspired to start reaching for old school grabs or taking your hands off the bar completely because it sits so reassuringly above your head while you're flying.
Power-wise there's plenty on tap through just pulling in on the bar. You can dive it, park it and it will drive forward. The bar pressure is just nicely on the heavy side of light. There are no stalling issues whatsoever and the kite always retains a little bit of power as it doesn't depower to nothing, which is probably why it jumps so well and always remains so well balanced. It's just very neat and tidy in the air.
For freestyle the Screamer turns nicely and retains feeling in the turn and its cruisy nature is always evident; it's just extremely comfortable and delivers smooth power. Experienced kite loopers will notice a little drop in power when they initiate the turn, but only for a second and other than that retains good feeling through the loop. Unhooked it needs a bit of trimming, but then sits nicely out of the loop and generates good pop.
We tried the Screamer in regular 15 knot 12 metre weather and also pushed it in over 30 knots when we had no right to be on a 12 and its range is excellent.
The 12 metre Screamer delivers a good combination of hang-time and freestyle. A good low end and smooth power delivery is a great quality and then with all that hang-time and boost to tap into as you get a better rider, the Screamer is just perfectly set-up for the way most kiteboarders actually want and need their kite to perform, rather than how new school pro riders dictate.
A kite that reminds us what kitesurfing should be all about; a lot of fun, easy-to-use and can take you flying.
KW WOULD CHANGE:
Some extra refinement throughout isn't necessary, but would mean the Screamer could give the more luxurious freeride kites a real run for their money when cost is no object.
14, 12, 9 and 7m