Home > Product Reviews & Comparisons > Epic V8 Pro vs Think Zen
A copy of a review I posted in Rivermiles forum.

Fit wise the Zen has more lower back support and hugs you more then the Epic, it also has more contact on the outside of the calves which will gives you a bit more control which some may like and some won't. The Epic will fit larger paddlers better but at 6.3” 185 I fit great in the Zen with plenty of leg length to spare while I am one notch away from max on the V8P. The Epic is better for people over the 210 pound range where the Zen will most likely feel too confining.

The grab handles on the Zen are nice for carrying as you can get your whole hand around them not just your fingers like on Epics. The Zen has a painted
finish which is beautiful but it is most likely not as durable as Epics gelcoat.

The Zen accelerates very well with its K1 ish shaped hull and is a blast to paddle. Speed wise they are surprisingly close considering the Zen is 8” shorter and .5” wider. We speed tested them with GPS’s and found the Zen about 1/10 mph slower at normal cruising speed and it takes slightly more effort to maintain speed. The Zen has two separate footstraps which some folks like, some don’t. Personally I prefer the Epic mono strap which some people retrofit onto the Zen. The Debritto bailer in the Zen is not nearly as nice as Greg Barton’s design IMO.

When reentering, the Zen has much less residual water for some
reason to drain out, probably because of the slightly higher gunwhales. Reentry is still easy on the Zen but probably a touch easier in the Epic. Build quality on both are Excellent.

You can’t go wrong with either ski. Both can be special ordered with a kick up rudder and the Epic is probably easier to retrofit one on. Think has a River Layup which is a nice choice for a more durable but still light ski.

These are really two totally different feeling skis and I love paddling
them both.