When you first hold the Matik, it stands out for its robustness and construction although, at 270g, it is heavier than other comparable products, such as the Grigri 2 (185g). In principle this is a handicap, but bearing in mind that its main use is for sport climbing and not trad. or alpine climbing, the extra 100g is a minor factor for most, especially if you consider some of its advantages, such as that the Matik barely generates any heat during intense use.
The three main strong points are as follows:
At first, you need to take some time to familiarize yourself with this new system, but once you get used to it, it is simple and easy to use and feels natural, agile and ergonomic. We think that paying out slack with your hand on the brake line - using either the normal or fast option indicated by the brand â€“ is easier than with other devices on the market.
The Matik, is, without a doubt, a very interesting innovation with several improvements as far as safety is concerned, which are always welcome. Apart from the auto-blocking system with the double-hinged handle for the descent, maybe the greatest innovation is its dynamism when braking. This dynamism minimizes impact force, which doesn't only make the device safer but also minimizes stress on the climber, belayer, anchors and rope, making them longer lasting and reducing breakage.
However, we have to say that, with ropes over 9.6mm (upper limit of its optimum range), the rope doesn't run as smoothly through the device. For this reason, in our opinion, it's an exceptional assisted braking belay device for modern ropes with a narrow diameter, for use mainly by high grade climbers on zig-zagging routes.
Because of its advantages in relation to its competitors, we particularly recommend it for very high grade climbers, on walls with large overhangs and who usually use a narrow single rope. Those who often suffer innumerable flight falls when trying out a route will greatly benefit from the dynamism of this device, and it will also reduce the risk of accidents caused by the impact force on your protection.
However, even though the device can be used on ropes up to 10.2mm, the nearer you get to this diameter, the greater the friction on the rope, which means it is harder to feed out rope than with other similar devices. For this reason, we think it's a great choice, with obvious improvements and advantages in comparison to other devices on the market, and highly recommendable for ropes up to 9.6mm and we'd even put it above its competitors, but it has one handicap: it doesn't handle ropes as well if they have a large diameter.