K2 Auto Ever Bindings ($299)
Key feature: Toe strap automatically closes and opens with the ankle strap—one ratchet, two straps.
Pros: This was very easy to use—not a lot of levers and pull strings to get it to work. You’re basically just strapping in your ankle every time, and by doing that the toe strap tightens—so easy! It also looks like a regular binding with really comfortable straps. The cushion for the base is soft, and the highback is comfortable and made with just the right flex.
Cons: I might worry about what happens if the system that tightens the toe strap through the ankle strap breaks. It looks well protected through the binding, but technical enough that if it breaks, it would be hard to fix or replace.
Verdict: The fastest binding to get in and out of without the one strap look, the fold down heel feel, or the stigma of a step-in system. I would use this binding all the time—it practically straps your foot in for you.