NTN Boots, Part 2: Scarpa T-Race vs. Scarpa Tx Comp


The biggest reason that going smaller in the Tx Comp isn’t a great idea is the placement of the bellows. Going smaller moves the bellows forward the to the knuckles of the toes in between the phalanges and the metatarsals, rather than staying placed over the cuneiforms, where the toes meet your foot. If the rest of the boot feels too big, I encourage you to seek out other options to make that boot smaller, because you will be hating your tele turns with the bellows too far forward.

After getting the sizing right, there really isn’t a difference in the bellows between the T-Race and the Tx Comp. They are both stiff and responsive. I’ve never felt under supported or restricted. For an aggressive tele skier on any terrain, these are the best bellows I’ve ridden.

As for durability of bellow, while I punched through the bellows on Garmonts and BD 75 mm boots, Scarpa’s bellows have lasted with no noticeable increase in elasticity, and the rubber/plastic is showing no signs of wear or cracking. And I’ve beat these to hell. No rock, stick, ski edge, or pole has been able to punch through them yet, on either the T-Race or the Tx Comp.

The forward lean on the Tx Comp runs 10-15 degrees, and the T-Race runs 9-12 degrees. I’ve ridden both boots at 12 degrees. This position places my ankle at a natural angle that keeps my knee right over the ball of the foot. In the Tx Comp, this is where I find the most power for free riding, basically putting a straight line right through the NTN’s center, up the middle of the reversed duckbill.

Walk Mode

The current designs of the T-Race and the Tx Comp both employ the same walk mode, but they didn’t always. When the T-Race and the Tx Comp were first released, switching the boot into tour mode required removing a metal rod with an allen wrench. This was a pain in the backcountry, and quite honestly I never did it. I just toured in a stiff boot.

My first season in the Tx Comp (2010-2011) was in this non-functional design, and was I stoked when Scapra added the walk mode to the Tx Comp in 2011-2012 . By this time, the T-Race had already been updated as well. The present tour setting in both boots is completely functional, works great, and adds to the versatility of the boots. It brings the aggressive downhill / resort stability to the backcountry.

review of the Scarpa Tx Comp and Scarpa T-Race, Blister Gear Review
Robin in the Scarpa Tx Comp, Suicide Chute, Wasatch backcountry. (photo by Joe Augusten)

When in tour mode, my ankles can breathe and have ample amounts of blood flow and flex. When in ski mode, the boot locks solidly translating into a stable, stiff, and responsive boot.

Power Straps

The power straps on each boot are now the same lightweight, velcro straps that Scarpa employs on every other boot. When first introduced, the Tx Comp had a metal synch on the powerstrap that was heavy. I’ve found the Velcro to work just as well, while also reducing weight. I’ve never had an issue with my power straps on either boot, they hold tight throughout the day, and work great for slinging your boots over your shoulder in the airport or on the way to the car.


The buckles in both models, in all honesty, get beat to hell. This may be the weakest part of the boots. After about 50 days my buckles become bent and don’t completely line up anymore. The boot must be manipulated in order to get the buckles to fully line up, and when storing the boots it takes a minute to make sure the boots are fully buckled so they hold their form through the off season. They are also easily bent.

Some of the other brands (e.g., BD and Garmont) seem to have better designs for their standard 75 mm buckles, and I would like to see Scarpa go this route.

Bottom Line

The Scarpa Tx Comp is a good boot for aggressive teleskiers who are ready to make the jump from 75mm to NTN, and who want to stay with a Scarpa boot. While it could use some tweaks in terms of buckle design and toe box fit, it is a light, durable, versatile boot that is consistent with it’s 75mm’s counterpart, the T-Race. And you might also want to check out the Tx Pro if you want to own an NTN and Dynafit compatible set up.


10 comments on “NTN Boots, Part 2: Scarpa T-Race vs. Scarpa Tx Comp”

    • Hey Superman,

      Anytime you want to go take turns, I’m game. Don’t think that me and my pinky toe won’t smoke you. Don’t worry I’ll tell Bruce Wayne to leave the batmobile in the cave.

      Best, The Boy Wonder.

  1. The funny thing is that the 24.5 and 25.0 are exactly the same size. The shells and liners are identical; it’s just marketing to suggest there’s any difference. Ever try to get a replacement liner from Intuition? They offer only whole sizes.

    • Hey Boot Fitter,

      Thanks for pointing that out, there was a typo in there! We’ve fixed it and you’re absolutely correct. The 25.0 and 24.5 shells are the exact same and it is the liner that is the difference between the two sizes. In fact I have ridden the 24.5 and 24.0 in the TxComps and have found the 24.0 shell to be too small. Thanks again!

  2. I am switching to NTN and need to buy boots. Trying to decide between the Scarpa TX Comp and Crispi World cup. I have been very happy with my Garmont Ener-g. I know the bellows are different and am worried the Crispi may flex very differently than my old boots. Anyway, I have to make a decision soon and was looking for input.

    • Darrell,

      This is the question I have been trying to answer for the last 5 seasons, to no avail. The many requests I have made to Crispi to ride their boots have gone unanswered. Either they don’t feel confident enough to put the World Cup or Evo up against the TxComp or they don’t care. Regardless, you my friend have come to the same place that all charging tele skiers find themselves and I apologize for not being able to help you, but know it is not for lack of trying.

      I can speak to the Scarpa TxComp vs. the Ener-g for you though. I rode the Ener-g for 6 seasons and, like you, loved them. They are, however, much different than the TxComp. The TxComp has stiffer bellows and a lower boot cuff and are a much more aggressive boot than the Ener-g. Also, while wider than they used to be, the TxComp will still feel narrower than the Ener-g. The NTN binding is already much more stable than any 75mm binding and has the potential to be stiffer as well (though you can ride with green cartridges if you like the “softer” feel) so going to a stiffer boot and binding may be more change than you’re looking for.

      If you are stoked on your Ener-g boot then I would push you towards the Scott Voodo NTN boot. The Voodo is the 3 buckle version of the Syner-g, which has now replaced the Ener-g in Scott’s line up. (I’m assuming that you know that Scott bought Garmont). You’re looking at a lower boot cuff, one less buckle, but a similar flex and width. In short the Voodo is the closest NTN match to the Ener-g. As you know, the TxComp is amazing, it just may not be the boot you’re looking for.

      I hope this helps, let me know if you have any other questions and congrats on the jump! Best, Robin.

  3. I just got the Scarpa TX Pro in the 27.5 and the toe box is insanely roomy. I have been skiing the Scarpa T1 the last 10 years in 27.0 and had to wear the thinnest sock liners I could find and trim my toenails to the nubs. That’s why I jumped up to 27.5 in the TX Pro. Rest of boot feels sized right – any recommendations on what I can do? Anything with the Intuition liner when I heat set them? Or is only option sizing down to 27.0?

  4. Sizing note to help others. I have been skiing T1 for years. The last pair is the black and red four buckle size 27. I have had the toe box expanded and use the thinnest orthodic, and really tried to get the liner as thin as possible when refitting it, Liner is super thin in the toe and heal. They are still super snug, but I love the way they perform. Moving to NTN, tried (but not skied) on the NTN Pro size 27 and I am excited as I think they will fit me out of the box due to the wider last.

    Only question is: NTN Pro or NTN Comp. If I have been skiing the T1 for years and have been very happy with them would the NTN Pro be more similar to the T1. Note: approaching mid 50’s. Probably don’t need to be skiing on bricks and want to tour a little in them as well.

    • Hey TelePK,
      I’m 54, tele last three decades. Enjoying T1s for years, I found the NTN Pro to be softer and better for my style and body size. Now I have a new pair of NTN Comps (6 days) which recall the bellows feel of fresh T1s. The Comps are now my favorites, and while still a touch stiff for me, are breaking in nicely at the bellows, and I’ve reduced the binding preload some to my liking.

      The Comps give bellows-located springiness, and stronger ski tip engagement. The Pros offer nice bellows suppleness, almost leather like in comparison, and a centered engagement of the ski depending more on lateral and rotary forces than tip driving. The difference in skiing is due to the bellows, the lateral and rear flex seems about the same to me. The Comp is snappy, fun, and fast. A better boot to lean on in high pressure turns, the Comp is more shin-pressure-oriented. The Pro is supple, poised, and neutral. A better boot for really feeling the skis underfoot (for me, at 150 pounds), the Pro is more foot-pressure-oriented. Hope this makes sense.

      The Comps lack tech inserts and so are a couple ounces lighter than the Pros. The current buckles are better, lighter than on your T1s. I’m taking the Comps touring this year, but either model would be fine. (Re: bindings… I recommend Rottefella Freeride, but love the amazing 22 Designs Outlaw/Outlaw X, which does it all with power and smoothness. If you want to use tech toe tele bindings, the Pro is the only choice from Scarpa.)

Leave a Comment