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    Wipika Amp 14M

    The Amp is Wipika's brand new 4 line top performance kite! Developed by Seb Cattelan, Hang time world record holder, the Amp will have you up there with the spy satellites!

    Extras :
    Adjustable carry bag, pump, repair kit and guide, fully fitted control bar (not tested).

    Recommended wind range :
    None given, our estimate 8 - 22 knots at the extremes.
     

    wipika_amp01.jpg

     


    Design, Finish, Tuning :
    It's a beautiful design and Wipika are offering three different colour-ways. The finish is top notch, great attention to detail, lots of good detailing and reinforcements.

    There are 7 inflatable battens, 2 valves on the leading edge (one hard one soft). One front line attachment point and three rears. There's also the possibility to add a bridle system to facilitate reverse take off thanks to an integral pulley. Wipika have decided to call the outer rear line attachment the 'Cruiser' setting where other manufacturers are calling it the speed setting. Could be confusing but amounts to the same thing. This tuning is basically for when you need to keep the kite moving for steady cruising.

    By contrast the 'Trixer' setting is for when you need lots of stability in the kite so you can rely on it while you pull your aerial moves. Between the two is the 'Styler' tuning, fast enough to hit good jumps but not so much that you can't hit some moves when you're up there. All clear ?

    Control bar :
    60cm long for this 14m2 kite. We didn't test it because it wasn't available yet at test time.

    Design remit :
    Designed as Wipika's new ultra performance, 4 line kite. AMP is an acronym: Amplitude, Manoeuvrability, Power! It's a high aspect ratio but is designed for precise control and response. Also built for big lift for those wanting to take Seb's record but with soft handling through even the most radical transitions, the AMP is also designed for effortless upwind and widest possible wind range. A kite to take the experts even further!

    Actioning the safety system :
    Not able to test the production control bar.

    Re-launch :
    Not easy, as you'd expect from a high aspect ratio 14 ! Then again, it doesn't fall down on the water that much so no real worries!!!

    Power :
    The AMP retains big power in light wind as long as you handle it gently. Doesn't like to be too powered-up or else it will luff, that means handling with kid gloves in light winds and a big stretch for your arms. Kicks in well when the wind does, big power for this size. And in big wind it pulls but stays controllable because it moves forward nicely in the window. However, lighter weight riders may find it physical and hard to get upwind in those conditions.

    Stability :
    The AMP is stable enough and doesn't give you problems in gusty winds (again, as long as you handle it correctly / gently !). Handles really well during jumps.

    Handling - general comfort :
    As we've already mentioned, needs gentle handling in light winds. As Wan Kanobi put it: let go, feel the force! With the wind up it speeds up well but stays soft on your arms. Great air speed for its size.

    Lift - jump :
    Excellent lift! In the right wind you can jump high and long, doesn't want to come down! Be careful, no jumping anywhere near downwind obstacles.

    Wind range :
    Moves around really well, is controllable but always powerful. Good range but could surprise you in a really big wind. Possibly problematic for lighter riders in heavy wind because of its heavy pull.

    Conclusion
    A good 14, powerful and fast with very good lift! Great handling in decent wind always with good power, more technical to fly in light wind because of the sensitive handling it needs. The AMP is a great product, solid and high performance.

    Pluses :
    Speed, lift.

    Recommendation :
    Gently does it for best results in lighter winds! Go big in the big stuff but watch out downwind...!

    Recommended skill level :
    Experts

    How does it fit the design remit :
    Should bust that record no problem ! Perhaps even more powerful than suggested in the design brief.

    The testers' verdicts in a sentence

    Caro, 33 years old, 63kg :
    "Easy and very light handling in light winds, very powerful and top performance in big stuff. And great lift!"

    Fred, 35, 83kg :
    "Hard work getting upwind sailing over- powered (and I mean big time over-powered !), otherwise, great lift."

    Franck, 29, 70kg :
    "A great toy, a bit technical in light winds though."

    Marco, 28, 86kg :
    "Gentle but fast at the same time, and superb lift!"

    Jean-Julien, 28, 67kg :
    "I had a few tuning problems in light winds! You mustn't pull on those rears or it luffs. Then in the big stuff (18 - 20 knots+) I found I was being pulled a lot, I couldn't resist the pull. Enormous lift and great stability in the jump!"

    Cedric, 21, 77kg :
    "A great compromise! Good at everything: speed, lift, response, de-power... Should be one of the most sought- after wings this summer."

     

    By : Team Flysurf

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