Here we go – the 2 main contenders for splitboarding boots – head to head – ThirtyTwo MTB Jones vs. Deeluxe Spark XV. Which one is better? In one corner we have the Deeluxe Spark XV splitboard boot. Deeluxe has been making them for a few years and keep improving on them every season. Check out our full review on the Deeluxe Spark XVs. In the other corner, we have the brand new ThirtyTwo MTB Jeremy Jones Splitboard boot. The first year it has been released and chock full of cool features. Check out our full review on the ThirtyTwo MTB Jeremy Jones boots.
So what separates the two boots? They are both made for splitboarding and are fully capable of getting you further and higher up the mountains. They both have Vibram soles, crampon compatible heel welts, durable construction and reinforced two caps. Then things start to show their why they are so different. It should be noted that no boot is superior to other boot – it is all about what you want in a boot and how it fits YOUR foot. Now that we have that out of the way, let’s dig in and see what makes them so different.
Deeluxe Spark XV Boots
The Deeluxe Spark XV is a comfortable boot, inspired by Xavier de le Rue in design and function. The liners are thick, the boots are lightweight, which is always nice, and they flex in the mid to mid-stiff range. The XVs use 2 speed laces and one power strap to tighten around the ankle. Some downsides are that the laces can get a bit messy hanging around. (see pic with laces hanging out) You can always wrap the laces around the pull tabs to keep things clean though. Another thing you will notice is the sheer size of the boot. It is significantly taller than the Jones. It is also bigger in circumference and length – though they did reduce the footprint size from last year. By no means is these low profile. These boots have done us well and we enjoyed them. They are very comfortable and have not really given us any issues. Opportunities for improvement on the Spark XVs: reduced size and footprint as well as a better lacing system. We have a bit of trouble getting a nice tight fit this year (did not have that problem last year).
ThirtyTwo MTB Jeremy Jones Boots
The ThirtyTwo MTB Jeremy Jones boot is by far the stiffest boot (out of the box especially) we have used. It did break in nicely though after several tours. We like to think that was a good sign that they took a while to break in, so they will maintain this flex for a long time. What strikes us most is the reduced size, height, circumference and footprint of this splitboarding boot. They pack a lot into this reduced package. Interestingly, these are significantly heavier than the Deeluxe. The padding is also much thinner (see picture) and the tongue is much thinner, though it does not cause any issues that we noticed (see picture). We also really liked how much more streamlined the boot is. There is nothing hanging off the boots or anything to break (thanks to the nice Cordura zip panels). The boots’ extra stiffness has come to be a strength when touring, creating a nice transfer of energy when you are side hilling and in more challenging terrain.
If you are looking for comfortable out of the box boot and don’t mind a bigger footprint (and want to save a bit of money) then the Deeluxe Spark XV are a good fit for you. If you would like a stiff, responsive boot that is much more reduced in size as well as features the unique walk mode (covered in the Jones review here) then this is the boot for you. Both are capable, but the Jones seems like a more versatile and longer lasting option. It all comes down to what fits best on your feet and how stiff of a boot you need.