P: Peter Line

If we were Scientific American Magazine, we would likely dive into the role that carbon has played over the millennia of the Earth's existence, owing its unique properties and malleable qualities to the fact that it is the only element that can form so many different compounds because each carbon atom is able to bond to four different atom at a time. But we are SNOWBOARDER Magazine and posses a layman's grasp of chemistry in as much that we know carbon is both light as it is strong, making its covalent bonding ability paramount to increasing our on hill carving ability. In the interest of paying homage to the the wonders of how carbon enhances our turning abilities when it is molded and crafted into a pair high quality bindings, we have rounded up a group of binders equipped with carbon highbacks, so while you may not be able to recite the number of electrons that carbons contains as dictated on the periodic table, you can benefit from the power of this esteemed element.

P: Peter Line

Nitro Machine

If you’re familiar with world-renowned author, computer scientist, inventor and futurist Ray Kurzweil, then you know about The Singularity. If not, you better get informed because The Singularity is “an era in which our intelligence will become increasingly non-biological and trillions of times more powerful than it is today—the dawning of a new civilization that will enable us to transcend our biological limitations and amplify our creativity” and this will be possible by man and machine becoming one in the same. Well, it looks like the fine folks at Nitro are one step ahead in the binding world because this Machine will make you and your snowboard become one on the hill. Equipped with a Carbon asym highback, the Machine’s response is nearly unparalled when rolling from heel to toe, and coupled with a Carbon composite baseplate, it’s comfortable, light and, simply, it just looks cool as hell. Nitrousa.com MSRP: $399.95

P: Peter Line

Salomon Quantum

Salomon takes their bindings seriously, and no example in their line is more prevalent than the Quantum. Featuring a Carbon highback and coupled with their patented ShadowFit heelcup technology, the dynamic of contrast is noticeable when ripping turns. The stiff highback plays off of the soft heelcup in ways that no other binding on the market can as Salomon took the “Opposites Attract” ideology to the Quantum and it’s a perfect pairing. Plainly put, this binding is ahead of its time when it comes to thinking outside the box, so when it comes time to drop in on a new pair of binders, think about taking a Quantum leap to the future of binding technology. Salomonsnowboards.com MSRP: $349.95

P: Peter Line

Ride El Hefe

While the real “El Hefe” is Aaron Abeyta, the lead guitarist and trumpet player for one of our culture’s most revered bands, NOFX, Ride Snowboards took that moniker and put it on a binding that’s sure to make some noise in the snowboard world this winter. With their patented Carbon Slimeback technology, the El Hefe sits at the top of their line in bindings and can tackle all of your on-hill needs. It’s light, and the reaction time from edge-to-edge is lightning fast. To top it off, the El Hefe boasts Ride’s Wedgie footbeds to improve dampening on harsh landings or choppy groomers. Make no mistake, the Ride El Hefe is muy bueno. Ridesnowboards.com MSRP: $359.95

P: Peter Line

NOW O-Drive

A few years back, famed French Canadian backcountry legend JF Pelchat was looking to transition out of professional snowboarding when he had an idea. That idea evolved into NOW bindings, as JF became the first binding to bring to market the idea that a bushing in the binding—much like on skate trucks—could be an interchangeable piece of equipment depending upon the terrain you’re riding. Because of that, JF has become a visionary in the binding development industry and his new O-Drive is a testament to his ideology. Featuring an all-new 100% 12-ply Carbon fiber highback , it’s the most responsive binding in the NOW line, but gone are the days when “rigid” and “responsive” were substitute terms for “comfort.” JF and co. beefed up the baseplate with to make it more comfortable without taking away any of the technology that makes it an all-mountain destroyer. JF’s pro career may be a thing of the past, but his legacy lives on, as NOW is the evolution of snowboard bindings. Now-snowboarding.com MSRP: $399.95

P: Peter Line

Flux Team

If you’ve ever been to their website, seen an ad or checked out their catalog, you probably know that the Flux team is stacked, but we’re not talking about team riders here; we’re talking about the all-new Flux Team binding. The Team focuses on being one of the most lightweight, responsive and durable bindings on the market but the tech backs up the talk with a super Carbon blend baseplate for maximum weight reduction as well as shock absorption for those icy, bumpy groomers or a twenty-stair rail to flat. But it’s not just the baseplate of the binding that focuses on weight reduction, but also the screws that fasten it to your deck, as they’re made of titanium, which is one of the strongest and lightest elements known to man. It’s no wonder that this binding is literally team-tedted and team-approved, hence the name. Flux-bindings.com MSRP: $250.00

P: Peter Line

Technine Bradshaw Pro

One of our culture’s most illustrious icons has done it again. Chris Bradshaw grew up honing his skills on the slushy slopes of Snow Summit and Bear Mountain, California and his legacy lives on in snowboarding with every tweak, shifty and stalled out tailgrab he rides away from. But, what allows him to progress every year is due in large part to the bindings that he develops every year with his longtime sponsor, Technine. This year, the new Bradshaw Pro features a Carbon highback to make sure that every time Bradshaw is tweaking, that binding is squeaking. It also improves the edge-to-edge capabilities that other bindings don’t afford in order to make park laps that much more enjoyable in between features. Technine.com MSRP: $329.00

P: Peter Line

Burton X-Base

It’s no secret that Burton bindings are snowboarding’s gold standard, and for good reason. The R&D department at The Big B is a small company in and of itself and they are dedicated to concepting, developing and testing cutting-edge bindings that reduce weight and improve responsiveness. That’s exactly what they’ve done with the X-Base, by incorporating a Carbon composite blend into the highback and the baseplate which not only makes the binding as a whole lighter, but also stronger. If you’re looking for a binding to rip in any terrain that a mountain can throw your way, the X-Base marks the spot. Burton.com MSRP: $519.95

P: Peter Line

Union FC

As a general consumer rule, if you’re looking for a binding that will outlast others on the market and be able to withstand a hefty workload, we would recommend at least taking a solid look at a binding brand whose company motto is “Stronger.” Union makes some of the most durable bindings in snowboarding, and the FC is on the top end of said durability. The “FC” stands for “Forged Carbon,” as the centerpiece of this product is focused on strength. The Forged Carbon in the FC is incorporated into the highback and the heelcup, providing unparalleled response, control and power. If you’re looking for a binding that can deal with anything that snowboarding can dole out, the FC is for you. You can take our word for it, or you can watch Dan Brisse launch himself over entire city blocks for proof before you head into your local shop to pick up a pair of these bad boys. Unionbindingcompany.com MSRP: $479.00