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summer worsley

Christos Nicolaou
Divemaster & Paddler
Christos is a passionate diver, enthusiastic paddler
and amateur SUP racer

PRODUCT REVIEW

Starboard iGo Zen Inflatable Paddle Board Review

The Starboard iGo Zen (ZDC) board is lightweight and durable, and features a double chamber construction which makes it easier to inflate, more rigid and safer too. The Starboard iGo Zen double chamber is also lighter and more affordable than other boards in this range. As well as using premium quality materials and construction methods, all Starboard iSUPs are extremely environmentally friendly.

There are other construction options for the iGO such as the single chamber, deluxe double chamber, deluxe single chamber and even the option of a windsurf construction, but this review will examine in depth the Starboard iGo Zen double chamber board.

Our Overall Review

We have thoroughly tested - and read reviews from other experts and users. In summary, this is what we think:

4.5

Reasons to buy

  • Good price/quality ratio, budget-friendly
  • Wider tail increasing stability
  • Environmentally friendly product/materials
  • Double chamber option for added safety
  • Top of the range brand
  • At 22 pounds, it’s lightweight for easy transporting

Reasons NOT to buy

  • Not as fast on the water as other Starboard iSUPs
  • Less responsive than the Deluxe construction Starboard iGo model

Review

  • DIVEIN.com Score: 4.5/5
  • Construction: 4.8/5
  • Stability: 3/5
  • Maneuverability: 4.6/5
  • Portability: 4/5
  • Price/Quality: 4/5

An all-round board ideal for paddle boarders of all levels, the Starboard iGo series is an excellent choice for those starting paddle boarding or looking for a lightweight, recreational iSUP. One of the most popular board shapes from Starboard, the Starboard iGo Zen Double Chamber (ZDC) iSUP has a wider tail giving the board it’s straighter shape and increasing buoyancy and stability, especially when turning.

In performance and all round experience it’s similar to the Bluefin Cruise Carbon 10’8, though it doesn’t have the same SUP package as that Bluefin model.

The wider tail with the narrower midsection also makes it easier to hold the paddle close and vertical, improving tracking in the water. Using the popular Zen construction the Starboard iGo Zen is a more affordable board from the Starboard company and is also very lightweight, making it ideal for travel.

With the Starboard Zen construction method paddle boarders can choose between the double-chamber and single-chamber builds. The double chamber increases the board safety whilst the single-chamber making the board leaner and more budget-friendly. Two chambers also makes inflating SUP boards a little easier than single chambers.

The Zen construction method uses heat-welded rails to increase the strength of the board and create a completely airtight, mechanically bonded seam. The heat welded rails also ensure the board will last a long time. The use of galvanized 2000D rails also increases the rigidness and strength of the board. The added use of the linear dropstitch means the board is strong and lightweight, making it ideal for transporting to and from the water.

Overall, the Starboard iGo Zen is a great option for all paddle boarders of all levels, however given its increased stability and buoyancy it is a better choice for beginner paddle boarders, in particular. The Zen double chamber is more affordable than a lot of similar double chamber models.

See the complete list of the best Inflatable Paddle Boards here!

Starboard iGo Zen Inflatable Paddle Board Review: Key Specifications

  • Best Suited For: Beginners/all levels/ recreational
  • Material: single layer linear knitted drop stitch, heat welded rails, and 2000D galvanized rails
  • Volume: 330 liters
  • Capacity: 265 lbs
  • Dimensions: 10’8” x 33” x 5.5”
  • Board Weight: 22 lbs
  • Package Weight: 35 lbs
  • Recommended Inflation: 15 PSI

Where to Buy:

Features

  • The board has a unique shape with a wide tail and narrow midsection. This larger width at the tail gives the board a straighter shape which makes it more stable on the water. It also increases the boards’ buoyancy when turning, ideal for beginners to learn paddle boarding techniques.
  • The narrow midsection also makes it easier for riders to hold the paddle vertically improving speed and tracking on the water.
  • Full length EVA pad adding to stability and balance for users. This EVA traction pad increases grip but also adds extra comfort with its layer of cushioning. This is an ideal board for all the family to enjoy exploring.
  • The board also includes a high quality EVA kick pad on the back of the board which aids when making pivot turns and moving the board on the water.
  • As well as all the performance features the board has two bungee ties to hold down personal items (one at the front and one at the back of the board).

Accessories

The Starboard iGo Zen uses excellent materials in its construction and along with the added accessories it comes as an affordable, budget-friendly package. It comes with an Enduro paddle, a V8 Pump, a lightweight leash, Zen fin and high quality Re-cover bag.

  • Paddle: The package includes a 3 piece adjustable hybrid carbon Enduro paddle. This paddle is strong and durable, great for long distance paddling. The paddle also features one of the most ergonomically comfortable handles on the market.
  • Leash: A lightweight safety leash weighing only 70g is included in the pack. Made from Yulex instead of neoprene, it has an 80% smaller carbon footprint and when stood on it flattens thanks to the cushioning.
  • Fin: The iGo Zen double-chamber construction comes with a no tools U.S. box fin. This unlike the deluxe double chamber comes with a 9” permanent fin.
  • Pump: V8 double-action pump means the board can be inflated very fast. With continuous pumping cycles in both upward and downward action it also makes it easier to inflate your board to 15PSI. The pump also comes with a Tiki gauge which indicates the board pressure (PSI).
  • Backpack: A Starboard Re-cover bag made from upcycled plastic bottles that is made into the strong 450D material. This bag features padded rucksack straps and a set of wheels for easy transportation.
starboard igo zen accessories

Stability

Thanks to its unique shape, the Starboard iGo Zen Double Chamber (ZDC) inflatable SUP is stable and buoyant on the water. Its wider tail with the narrow midsection gives this board a straighter shape, this shape makes the board especially stable when turning. The Zen double chamber construction of the board adds to stability by providing a strong, rigid structure.

The linear drop stitching used in the Starboard iGo Zen keeps the board lightweight whilst also adding to the rigidity of the board, and in turn the stability. The added galvanized 2000D rails of the board also increases the stability of the board as it makes it more stiff and rigid, almost like a hard board.

The Starboard iGo Zen also comes with the option of the single-chamber construction (ZSC). We think the double-chamber is better as this technology increases the stiffness of the board, making it even more stable on the water and allowing it to tackle rougher water and chop.

Due to its shape and the materials used in the Zen construction the Starboard iGo Zen is very stable and perfect for beginners to learn paddle boarding techniques and maneuvering.

starboard igo zen stability

Maneuverability

The Starboard iGo Zen is made for easy maneuverability. Its unique shape of a wider tail and narrow midsection allows the rider to hold the paddle closer and more vertically, this paddle positioning makes it easier to make turns and control the board’s direction. The wider tail also gives the board more buoyancy when pivoting and turning.

The addition of the EVA kick pad at the tail of the board also makes it easier for riders to turn the board. We like that there are no cargo chords right on the kick pad too, which a lot of boards have. That means your feet won’t get snagged on them when learning how to do backstep turns.

The shape of the Starboard iGo Zen makes it ideal for paddle boarders who are looking to improve their techniques. It is a responsive, lightweight board and along with the stability is perfect for all levels of paddle boarders.

starboard igo zen maneuverability

Portability

As an inflatable SUP board the Starboard iGo Zen SUP is very portable. The Zen construction used for this model of Starboard iGo is particularly lightweight making it much easier to transport. The added bag included in the package is made from upcycled bottles, and opens fully making it easier to remove and re-fold the board and all accessories inside it.

The bag also has wheels and backpack straps, this makes it great for transporting over varied terrain. The durability and strength of the bag is also convenient for those who wish to travel with their Starboard iGo Zen iSUP.

When inflated the board has a central flat-handle which makes it easy to carry to and from the water, whilst also being small and unnoticeable when using the board. There is also an added handle at the rear of the board. These handles make it easier to transport the board to and from the water once inflated. At 22 pounds it’s lighter than most other boards in this quality range.

starboard igo zen portability

Price/Quality Ratio

The Starboard iGo Zen is one of the most affordable boards in the Starboard collection. The Zen construction, high quality materials along with the comprehensive package make this board an excellent deal with a good price to quality ratio. Starboard iSUPs are premium boards and this is apparent in their high quality materials and innovative use of technology, these boards are built to be durable and last a long time.

The premium quality is apparent in every board with added features and accessories which add to the comfort of the board for the rider. It is apparent when using the Starboard iGO Zen Double Chamber that it is of high quality, as it’s very durable, sturdy and rigid on the water. For beginners, including all levels of paddle boarders, this board is a good investment if looking for quality and durability.

Optional Accessories from Starboard

  • Starboard Lima Paddle
  • Starboard Enduro Paddle
  • Starboard Armacore Fin
  • Starboard Net Positive Fin
  • Starboard Coil Race Leash
  • Starboard Surf Leash
  • Starboard V8 double action pump

Summary

Do we recommend it?

Yes, we strongly recommend the Starboard iGo Zen iSUP. Recommended for all levels and excellent for paddle boarders looking to improve their techniques, the Starboard iGo Zen inflatable SUP is a great choice. One of the most environmentally friendly companies and boards on the market, the Starboard iGo Zen Double Chamber iSUP is made from high quality materials, guaranteed to last a long time and all for a more affordable price.

See the complete list of the best Inflatable Paddle Boards here!

What We Like

  • Good price/quality ratio, budget-friendly
  • Wider tail increasing stability
  • Environmentally friendly product/materials
  • Double chamber option for added safety
  • Top of the range brand
  • At 22 pounds, it’s lightweight for easy transporting

What We Don’t Like

  • Not as fast on the water as other Starboard iSUPs
  • Less responsive than the Deluxe construction Starboard iGo model

Where to Buy:

Where to Buy:

FAQ – Frequently asked questions about Starboard iGo Zen Inflatable Paddle Board

  • image/svg+xmlimage/svg+xml
    How long does it take to inflate the Starboard iGo Zen inflatable SUP board?

    The Starboard iGo Zen inflatable SUP Board can be inflated and deflated in about 10 minutes.

  • image/svg+xmlimage/svg+xml
    What pressure can the Starboard iGo Zen inflatable SUP board be inflated to?

    The Starboard iGo Zen inflatable SUP Board needs to be inflated to 15PSI.

  • image/svg+xmlimage/svg+xml
    What does the Starboard iGo Zen Inflatable SUP board come with?

    The Starboard iGo Zen Inflatable SUP Board comes with one U.S. box system fin, an Enduro paddle, a lightweight leash, V8 pump and backpack.

  • image/svg+xmlimage/svg+xml
    What weight can the Starboard iGo Zen Inflatable SUP board hold?

    The Starboard iGo Zen Inflatable SUP Board can support a weight of up to 265 pounds.

  • image/svg+xmlimage/svg+xml
    Is the Starboard iGo Zen Inflatable SUP board covered by warranty?

    The Starboard iGo Zen Inflatable SUP Board is covered by warranty for up to 2 years.

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