Sizes Available: 4.5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14m
Sizes Tested: 8m
We built the RPX to create the next evolution in freeride kite design. Why do freeride kites need to lack versatility and performance? They don’t. The RPX was built to bridge that gap and create the highest performing and most versatile freeride kite on the market.
The RPX is one of the best all-around kites on the market today. It delivers hero-level performance in every category of kiteboarding. Faster, Lighter, and more technically advance than its predecessor; The RPX is the next evolution of a freeride kite. The RPX boasts top-of-the-line performance and handling as well as extensive range, depower, and upwind ability. The RPX is designed to take you to your next kiteboarding milestone, no matter what that is.
Visit for more info: www.slingshotsports.com/collections/kites/products/rpx-v1
For the huge RPM fan base in the world, there should be a collective sigh of relief now that the RPX v1 platform has filled the RPM void with a sequel that tunes up its edgy performance while softening some of its handling to feel a little more forgiving and intuitive. With lots of bridle tuning options, the new RPX covers a ton of territory between freeride/freestyle and wake with a wider appeal to riders of all levels.
Inflation Valve: Bayonet valve / no attachment required
Flying Line Attachments: Center Bridle: Larks head / Wingtip bridle: Knots
Centerline Split: Low-V
Front Bridle Options: Dual setting / Single slider
Design and Features
The RPX is a 3-strut airframe that shares the DNA from the RPM with its open C-shape that gives you a flatter center area of the medium aspect kite. From the second you unfurl the RPX out of its generously sized kite bag you will find a much lighter overall weight than the previous RPM. The new panel layout reduces seam weight and the crisp 4×4 canopy material along with thinner bridles adds up to some weight savings that you can feel. The leading edge and wingtips are still quite bomber in typical SS fashion with a good amount of Dacron in the wingtip and a lighter Dacron overlapping the trailing edge. You get three soft cord battens on each side of the kite for edge stability. The RPX uses the standard large diameter bayonet-style inflation valve that keeps your hose locked to the kite and requires no nozzle on the end of your standard pump hose for a quick and easy pump up. The RPX sports extra-large rubber distribution hoses between struts and the LE, which makes inflation and complete deflation much quicker and easier. The front bridle uses a version of the RPM’s Flyline bridle with a single slider that offers two settings: Freestyle and Wake. To be honest, at first we scratched our heads because we read the further back ‘Wake’ setting to be ‘Wave,’ but as soon as our reading comprehension skills got up to speed with the labeling diagram on the inside of the kite, the mystery was solved. The front bridle attachment pigtail ends in a larks head and the wingtip attachment ends in three knots. The wingtip offers three attachment settings (stock in the middle) to choose bar pressure with the wingtip pigtail offering three knots for tuning the tension on your outside lines.
In terms of feel, the RPX front bridle offers two different settings that seems to make a huge difference in how the kite performs. We started with the bridle set to the ‘freestyle’ setting and that made the RPX really come alive for general freeride, freestyle jumping, surfing and foiling. With the pivot point moved forward, the bar pressure felt fairly light with a really progressive delivery of power across the bar throw. The freestyle setting seemed to produce a slightly wider turning arc that generated more power and meatier loops with good power. The forward freestyle setting seemed to give us a fair amount of depower in the canopy that made the ride feel a little more forgiving and the airframe seemed to want to fly a little farther forward in the window. When we swapped the bridle setting to the ‘Wake’ setting we noted that the bar didn’t feely quite as progressive, with more of the power delivery happening in a smaller range as you pull in the bar. The bar pressure seems a little harder in Wake mode and not quite as tactile. The kite also seemed to sit deeper in the window with a gruntier or more powerful pull and not quite as much depower. In the Wake mode, the RPX excelled with unsent jumps where the kite would load up and then release, which seemed really tuned for unhooked freestyle moves. In terms of launching big airs, the ‘Freestyle’ setting seemed more intuitive for steering, but the Wake setting seemed to deliver more lifting power and punch, but the true difference or preference for jumping probably depends on the user.
In terms of handling, the RPX has the feel of a lighter version of the RPM, where the lighter build delivers a lighter feel at the bar and a faster kite that initiates turns quicker and moves across the window a bit faster. Strong-armed meatheads who ride two sizes overpowered might pine for the old RPM, but the finesse and performance of the new RPX will appeal to a broader segment because its handling is more refined and its power generation feeling is more efficient and versatile. The RPX in the forward Freestyle setting has better handling for those that mix waves with freestyle but are not willing to commit to the SST, or for those that dabble in kite foiling on those lighter days. The RPX fills a slot in the crossover freeride category for Slingshot with its lighter more efficient airframe. Combined with its tuning options, it additionally does a great job of keeping its unhooked wake pedigree alive for those that crossover.
Featured Control Bar
Some may be sad to see the end of the Compstick, but times are a-changing, and we are excited to embrace a new chassis and complete redesign for Slingshot’s 2021 control bar offerings. The all-new Sentry bar sheds some weight and delivers a click-in style quick release along with a host of other features that distinguish the new from the old. The Sentry is a fixed-length bar that comes in three widths: 17in/43cm, 20in/51cm and 23in/58cm. The small bar comes with 20m lines, the medium with 20m (17+3m) and the largest bar with 27m lines. One of the biggest upgrades is the new quick release that features the click-in/seatbelt style reset where the loop slips into the gate for an easy reset of the safety system. The reset is an easy target and the click is clean and reliable every time. Above the quick release is a hand swivel that doubles as a quick-release guard and the bar uses two PVC-covered throw lines that untwist the center lines after rotations while the single centerline safety system is cleanly routed up one of those PVC throw lines for a simple and unobtrusive setup that you don’t know is there, at least until you need it. The power tuning system uses a clam cleat and the adjustment toggle features Velcro to keep it in place during riding. The color-coding on the bar is subdued with red and white dots on the grip and solid colors on the leader lines; for good measure, a Slingshot logo on the insert when you are holding the bar in the correct orientation. With semi-padded bar ends and good-sized floats, the bar features hiding retractable bungees for a secure wrap-up and ample winding space to keep the lines secured to the bar during non-use. The bar grip features a stamped rubbery feel, a bit softer than the Compstick, that is very simple with no asymmetrical bumps or shapes, just a medium diameter round grip that is comfortable and grippy. Overall, the Sentry bar is much lighter than the previous Compstick and offers a huge upgrade in its quick release with rigging that is feature-rich yet simple and clean.
Visit for more info on the bar: www.slingshotsports.com/collections/bars/products/sentry-v1
With over 112 products reviewed, get the digital version of our 2021 Gear Review Guide that puts all the latest products reviews in one easy to access and searchable guide. Want a low-v bar with a durable PVC coated throw line and soft padded bar ends? Use our guide to stay on top of gear developments and find the exact piece of equipment to match your style.
*Already a subscriber or purchased our 2021 Gear Review Guide in the fall? Your guide has been updated to our latest version in your Tkb library. Log into your account to read the latest reviews.