BLACKFIN Model XL Review + Discount (2019 SUP)

BLACKFIN Model XL SUP Board

Initially launched in March 2018 and freshly updated for 2019, the BLACKFIN Model XL is the largest all-around inflatable paddle board in iROCKER SUP’s range of premium inflatables. One of our most highly recommended iSUPs last year, the latest version has gotten even better…

Since introducing their initial iSUP models a few years back, Jacksonville’s iROCKER has quickly built a reputation for providing ultra-durable and dependable inflatable SUPs at super affordable price points. The new BLACKFIN SUP line takes everything up a notch, with premium features and a high-end accessory bundle that’s nicer than many boards costing twice as much.

BLACKFIN SUP Rail

Currently, there are three iSUP models in the BLACKFIN range: the 10’6″ BLACKFIN Model X, the 11’6″ Model XL, and the brand new Model V touring SUP. With talk of more models to come, we’re certainly excited to see how things develop down the line.

Inflatable SUP on Beach

iROCKER founders Steve Elder and Dave Erwin are extremely attentive to customer feedback, and we’ve watched the young company make significant improvements to their product line over the past several years. From new models to enhanced accessory offerings, it’s obvious that this company is intently focused on delivering exactly what their customers are asking for. The 2019 iROCKER inflatable SUP range is the most impressive to date and our top pick this year if you’re looking for a feature-rich line of inflatables that offer bombproof durability and affordable pricing.

BLACKFIN SUP on Beach

In this review of the brand new BLACKFIN Model XL SUP, we’ll go over all of this board’s features and changes for 2019, specs, overall build quality and construction, likes and dislikes, what’s in the box, optional add-on accessories, warranty coverage, and where to buy it. We’ve also included our in-depth video review, setup video, and unboxing video, and we’ll share all current iROCKER coupon codes and promotional discounts so you can save some money and get the best deal.

BLACKFIN Model XL iSUP

In a Hurry? Here’s a Quick Summary…

ProsMuch lighter than last year’s model (5 lbs)
Incredibly tough
Super stable
Very stiff
Glides and tracks well in the water
Excellent versatility
Attractive updated design
New mount at nose for GoPro camera, fishing rod holder, etc.
Rigid carbon fiber rail
Three removable fins for easier racking, packing, and storage
Convenient toolless fin system
Grab handles at nose and tail
Dual bungee storage areas
Removable safety handles at nose and tail for kiddos
D-ring for towing
6 D-rings on rails for attaching accessories
High-quality, Blackfin branded traction pad
High-end carbon fiber shaft paddle
New Full Throttle dual-chamber triple-action pump
Larger wheeled roller backpack
2-year warranty
30-day money back guarantee
Great customer support
ConsNeoprene carrying handle cover isn’t removable
GoPro mount needs thicker washer
Price & Where to Buy itCheck Price or Buy Now

Click Here to Buy the 2019 BLACKFIN Model XL

The BLACKFIN Model XL iSUP measures 11’6″ x 34″ x 6″ and weighs in at 27 pounds. One of the only complaints we had about last year’s board was the fact that it was a bit on the heavy side due to the ultra-durable quad-layer PVC construction, and we’re excited to report that iROCKER moved their BLACKFIN line over to a lighter triple layer composite PVC construction which has dramatically reduced the overall weight of the boards. The new Model XL shed a full 5 pounds of weight this year, and it’s a very noticeable change.

BLACKFIN Model XL Side

This is a wide and extremely stable stand up paddle board with a maximum weight capacity of 485 pounds, making it ideal for large paddlers and those times when you need to bring along plenty of gear. Previously, the company’s most stable board was the popular 10’6″ iROCKER CRUISER, but their BLACKFIN models now offer even greater stability.

BLACKFIN Model XL Inflatable Paddle Board

Perfect for beginners through advanced paddlers, the Model XL is extremely versatile and can be used for SUP fishing, flatwater paddling, paddling with children or a dog, river riding, touring, yoga/SUP fitness, and even in super choppy whitewater conditions.

Inflatable SUP Stability

iROCKER has really stepped up their game last season with major design improvements in the aesthetics department, and once again, these latest BLACKFIN boards are stunning. From the striking blue colors and accenting to the BLACKFIN branding, everything is tastefully executed. These are eye-catching new models that look amazing in the water, and they’re definitely some of the nicest looking boards we’ve reviewed.

(*Drag slider below to compare the 2018 and 2019 Model XL)

2018 2019

Features

The top deck of the 2019 BLACKFIN Model XL is covered by a high-quality EVA foam traction pad that provides outstanding grip and comfort. Instead of using a diamond pattern and crocodile texture as you see on iROCKER’s regular boards, the company neatly stamped the BLACKFIN logo into the deck pad which is a really nice touch. This traction pad is super comfy on the hands and feet, making it perfect for SUP fitness.

(*Hover over hotspots for additional details)

Model XL SUP Top

Large front bungee storage area for stashing dry bags, backpacks, camping gear, and more.

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Rear bungee area for additional storage — perfect for those times when there’s a passenger or pup at the nose.

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Comfortable center carrying handle makes it easy to carry the Model XL.

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Convenient front grab handle for pulling the board in and out of the water.

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Rear grab handle elevates the fins off the beach to avoid damage.

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Rear safety grab handles for the kiddos. Removable and well-padded for comfort.

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Rear safety grab handles for the kiddos. Removable and well-padded for comfort.

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D-ring at tail for quick and easy attachment of the included ankle leash.

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New accessory mount allows for easy attachment of GoPro camera, fishing rod holder, waterproof speaker, and more.

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6 D-rings along rails for attaching the optional kayak seat kit, shoulder carrying strap, or tying down additional gear.

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Premium EVA foam traction pad provides amazing grip and comfort.

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In the middle of the traction pad is a tough nylon webbed carrying handle that is covered by a soft and comfortable neoprene cover. The sewn-in cover features a rubber BLACKFIN logo patch, and there are 4 stainless steel D-rings located along the edges of the deck pad for attaching the BLACKFIN kayak seat or shoulder strap (these are labeled this year which is a nice touch). iROCKER also added 2 more D-rings this season for a total of 6 — these can also be used as additional cargo tie-down points if you’re going to be packing a ton of gear.

BLACKFIN Carry Handle

BLACKFIN Model XL D-rings

At the nose of the board are 6 additional D-rings and a generously-sized bungee cord storage area that’s great for stashing a dry bag, Crocs, camping gear, fishing supplies, and more. As we also saw last season on the iROCKER ALL-AROUND 10′ and ALL-AROUND 11′ models, the company has once again integrated child safety handles into the bungee storage area but this year they’re removable. These are perfect if your kids enjoy riding along on the nose of your board as it gives them a safe and secure place to hold onto.

Bungee Storage Area

Removable Safety Handles

Model XL Kids' Handles

There’s also another grab handle at the tip of the nose for pulling the board in and out of the water as well as a brand new Action Mount for attaching a variety of accessories such as a GoPro camera, fishing rod holder, or waterproof Bluetooth speaker.

Attaching GoPro Camera

The tail of the BLACKFIN Model XL iSUP features another grab handle which is covered by a soft neoprene cover as well as a D-ring for attaching the included leash and a high-quality Halkey-Roberts style inflation valve. The rear grab handle is definitely the one we reach for most often as it allows you to elevate the fins and avoid potential damage caused by rocky beaches.

Halkey-Roberts Air Valve

Pulling Model XL on Beach

Also located at the tail is a second bungee storage area which we absolutely love — in addition to providing more onboard storage space, the dual bungee cargo areas also give you an alternate spot to stash your dry bag whenever the nose of your board is occupied by a person or pup. New for 2019, iROCKER also added removable safety handles for the kiddos at the rear of the board which gives children another fun spot to ride along.

Front & Rear Kids' Handles

On the bottom of the Model XL is another D-ring at the nose for towing or tethering and the board features three removable fins this year (vs. a center removable fin and two fixed side fins as previously seen).

Towing D-ring

Tri-fin Setup

Being able to remove the two smaller side fins not only gives you additional versatility in terms of fin setups, it also allows the board to be rolled up into a smaller form factor for easier packing and storage. Lastly, if you happen to rack your boards on the roof of your vehicle, having the ability to remove all of the fins also allows you to stack them in a much neater fashion…

BLACKFIN SUPs on Roofrack

Construction

The BLACKFIN Model XL was designed with extreme durability in mind. In addition to the tough drop stitch material and bombproof triple layer composite PVC construction, the board features stiff, reinforced carbon rails which add even more durability and rigidity.

BLACKFIN SUP Carbon Fiber Rail

From the D-rings to the inflation valve, all of the hardware on the BLACKFIN Model XL is top-notch. The fit and finish is also excellent, just as you would expect with a premium inflatable stand up paddle board.

Paddling Performance

On the water, the new Model XL is extremely rigid, stable, and a bit faster than the company’s shorter BLACKFIN Model X. This isn’t a board that was designed primarily with speed in mind, but it glides well and is super fun in the water.

BLACKFIN Model XL

For those interested in a longer touring SUP but need something that offers a bit more in the stability department, the 34″ wide BLACKFIN Model XL is an ideal choice. The majority of inflatable touring boards are 30″-32″ wide, so you’ll notice much more stability with the Model XL thanks to its wider profile. Also, the dual bungee storage areas and additional D-rings give you plenty of places to secure dry bags and camping gear for multi-day, overnight SUP excursions.

BLACKFIN Model XL GoPro Footage

If you don’t need the extra stability offered by the Model XL and are looking for more of a pure touring design, we highly recommend checking out the new BLACKFIN Model V.

Setup Video

Likes and Dislikes

To be honest, there’s honestly nothing to complain about with the new BLACKFIN Model XL. This is a really nice inflatable paddle board that’s incredibly durable and loaded with premium features. The BLACKFIN lineup packs a ton of value and in our opinion — these boards could easily be sold with a much higher price tag.

Model XL Ocean Paddling

We love the fine attention to detail and well-thought-out design of the BLACKFIN Model XL. The logo stamped traction pad is a nice touch that you really only see on much more expensive boards and the dual bungee storage areas and twin grab handles at the nose and tail are extremely handy whenever you’re pulling this big board in and out of the water.

BLACKFIN Stamped Traction Pad

For parents of small children, the kiddie grab handles which have been nicely integrated into the front and rear bungee cargo areas are amazing. Our 2- and 3-year-old children absolutely love taking the BLACKFIN SUPs out as the comfortable handles provide a safe and secure place for them to confidently hold onto. We also love the fact that the company has made the handles removable this year — ideal for those paddlers who don’t happen to have children.

A friend’s son also came up with another fun and creative way to take advantage of these padded handles…

BLACKFIN Model XL Safety Handles

We also really like the high-quality U.S. fin box, removable side fins, lighter weight construction, and carbon reinforced rail. When fully inflated, the BLACKFIN Model XL is super stiff and feels very similar to a hard board under the feet.

Carrying Model XL SUP

In terms of design, the new board really stands out in the water and we like the fact that the company changed the color of the board’s underside from predominately white to all blue. The blue bottom of the 2019 Model XL doesn’t show dirt and grime nearly as much as last year’s board.

Model XL iSUP Bottom

Lastly, the new accessory mount at the board’s nose is super convenient. It’s nice to have a quick and easy place to attach a GoPro, giving you a great way to capture footage of your paddling adventures. This is also a prime spot to secure a waterproof speaker and anglers are sure to appreciate the ability to secure a fishing rod holder to the nose of the Model XL.

BLACKFIN GoPro Accessory Mount

When it comes to dislikes, it would be awesome if the carry handle’s sewn-in neoprene cover wasn’t permanently attached. Adding a simple velcro closure would allow you to remove the cover — great for activities like SUP fitness where a more lay flat handle is preferable. Having the ability to remove the cover completely would also speed up the drying process after a day on the water.

Secondly, the washer on the included GoPro camera mount definitely needs to be larger. As is, the camera is very difficult to  position securely once it’s screwed on. We mentioned this to the company and they reported that it’s already being addressed — as a quick and easy fix, we just grabbed a spare rubber washer that was laying around the house and it did the trick.

GoPro Camera Attachment

BLACKFIN Model XL Rating
  • Durability
  • Features
  • Versatility
  • Stability
  • Speed
  • Portability
  • Warranty
  • Customer Support
  • Price
4.9

Specs

Length11’6″
Width34″
Thickness6″
Weight27 pounds
Max Capacity485 pounds
Price

What’s Included

BLACKFIN Model XL AccessoriesWe love the fact that the BLACKFIN Model XL comes with everything that you need to start paddling. In the box is a premium wheeled SUP backpack, 3-piece carbon fiber shaft travel paddle, brand new Full Throttle dual-chamber triple-action pump, 10′ coiled SUP leash, iSUP repair kit, BLACKFIN SUP sticker pack, and user manual.

Unboxing Video

BLACKFIN Wheeled Roller Backpack

The Model XL once again comes with iROCKER’s wheeled BLACKFIN travel backpack. This is an impressive SUP backpack that is well-made and gives iROCKER fans something that they’ve been clamoring for — a bag with wheels.

Pulling BLACKFIN Roller Bag

New for 2019, the bag has been enlarged for easier packing and additional storage capacity. One minor gripe we heard from some last season was that the bag was a bit on the small side — we’re happy to report that the revamped 2019 bag is much roomier.

2018/2019 BLACKFIN Backpack Comparison

On the front of the bag is an oversized, zippered storage pocket which is large enough to hold the new BLACKFIN Full Throttle pump, fin, leash, and other accessories. There are also several compression straps that allow you to cinch the bag down once it’s fully packed.

BLACKFIN SUP Backpack

The top of the bag features a heavy-duty nylon grab handle that is covered by a thick rubber grip. There is also a see-through luggage ID window that’s perfect if you’re planning to fly with your board (once packed, the bag can be conveniently checked with your other luggage).

Luggage ID Window

Both sides of the bag feature durable grab handles, and there’s another sturdy grab handle that’s made out of plastic on the bag’s bottom. The bottom of the bag is heavily reinforced which adds protection and also helps the board to stand upright when loaded.

Side Grab Handles

Carrying Bag Bottom

Also located at the bottom of the bag are two oversized roller wheels that feature deeply-grooved traction — perfect for those times when you’re pulling the bag through dirt, sand, grass, or gravel. The roller wheels are super smooth and pulling the bag behind you is nearly effortless — definitely a nice option to have when it comes to sprawling airport terminals or long walks to the beach.

Roller Wheels

It’s also nice that the company strategically placed the wheels on the front of the bag which prevents them from digging into your back when it’s packed and on your shoulders. Of course, this also keeps the straps from dragging on the ground when you’re wheeling the bag around.

BLACKFIN Wheeled Carrying Bag

Located on the back of the bag are two heavily padded shoulder straps. These straps are fully adjustable and feature nylon webbed loops and dual plastic D-rings for attaching small accessories or electronics with a carabiner.

BLACKFIN Backpack Straps

The rear of the bag also features a thick back pad that is covered by a breathable mesh material, and there’s an adjustable sternum strap and waist belt for additional stabilization when the bag is fully loaded and on your shoulders.

Whether you’re wearing the BLACKFIN travel bag on your back or rolling it behind you, it’s a super convenient way to transport your board. The bag is durable and well-designed, and the variety of grab handles really comes in handy when you’re pulling the bag in and out of your car.

Loading BLACKFIN SUP Backpack

3-piece Carbon Fiber Shaft Paddle

The included 3-piece BLACKFIN SUP paddle features the same reliable design as iROCKER’s regular paddle, but the BLACKFIN version includes an upgraded carbon shaft. The lightweight carbon shaft has a premium matte finish and it’s neatly branded with the BLACKFIN logo.

BLACKFIN Carbon Fiber Shaft Paddle

To assemble the paddle, simply line up the holes with the locking pins and lock everything into place. The locking pins are extremely secure and prevent unwanted twist while paddling — a common issue that you see so often with other 3-piece paddles.

BLACKFIN SUP Paddle Blade

The blade of the BLACKFIN travel paddle is made out of ultra-durable nylon and there’s a protective rubber coating along the outer edge that helps to prevent damage from rocks and other hard objects.

New Full Throttle Dual-Chamber Pump

BLACKFIN Full Throttle iSUP PumpThe BLACKFIN Model XL comes with the brand new Full Throttle dual-chamber pump that’s similar in design to Red Paddle’s Titan Pump. The ultra-efficient dual-chamber pump features three different settings for inflating your board and it significantly reduces the time and effort needed to inflate your board.

Full Throttle iSUP Pump

While last season’s BLACKFIN boards also shipped with a dual-chamber triple-action pump, the 2019 pump is even faster and easier to use that the previous version…

2018/2019 BLACKFIN SUP Pump Comparison

Inflating BLACKFIN Model XL

On the back of the pump is a small “Action Control” dial with three modes. When you begin to inflate the Model XL, select mode “1”. This setting will allow you to quickly add air to your board. Once you notice that the pumping becomes more difficult, kick things into mode “2”. Finally, you can move the selector to setting “3” when needed to finish inflating the board to the desired pressure (recommended inflation pressure is 14-18 PSI, by the way).

Full Throttle Pump Action Control

Last but not least, the BLACKFIN SUP Full Throttle pump features a convenient built-in pressure gauge at the top so you’ll always know exactly how much air is in your board during the inflation process.

BLACKFIN Full Throttle Pump Pressure Gauge

Leash

We love the fact that iROCKER promotes SUP safety by including a 10′ coiled ankle leash with all of their boards. The BLACKFIN leash features a heavy-duty coiled cord that doesn’t drag in the water behind you when you’re paddling. There are dual swivels on both ends of the cord to prevent tangling, and the ankle cuff is well-padded with a soft and comfortable neoprene material. The BLACKFIN branded ankle cuff also features a hidden key pocket for securing your keys while you’re out on the water.

BLACKFIN Coiled SUP Leash

Repair Kit

The BLACKFIN Model XL’s repair kit is neatly packaged in a screw top plastic canister and it includes a valve wrench, three PVC patches, and a couple replacement lever locks for the new side fins.

iSUP Repair Kit

In the unlikely event that your board gets damaged, you can quickly and easily repair it yourself by following these simple steps:

  • After deflating the board, clean the damaged area well with rubbing alcohol
  • Carefully apply adhesive (not included) to the surface of your board as well as the matte side of the PVC repair patch
  • Apply a thin layer of adhesive to the area around the edge of the patch to ensure an airtight seal
  • Give the glue 24 hours to dry

User Manual & BLACKFIN Sticker Pack

BLACKFIN Sticker Pack

Lastly, iROCKER includes a cool BLACKFIN sticker pack and helpful user manual with the Model XL. Inside the user manual are detailed instructions on care and maintenance, water safety, board inflation and deflation, fin installation, repairs, and paddle assembly.

Optional Add-On BLACKFIN Accessories

In addition to their BLACKFIN range of premium SUPs, iROCKER also has a growing line of BLACKFIN-branded accessories. While these don’t come standard with the Model XL, we wanted to mention several of them as they’re great add-ons to consider.

BLACKFIN Kayak Seat Kit

First of all, the company has a BLACKFIN kayak bundle that’s available for purchase. This kit comes with everything needed to transform your BLACKFIN Model XL paddle board into a kayak, and the entire kit folds up neatly for easy transport and storage. Included with the seated kayak conversion kit is a padded seat, zippered storage pouch, and matching carbon shaft paddle attachment.

BLACKFIN Kayak Seat Package

To install the kayak seat, simply attach the strap hooks to the four D-rings located along the sides of the traction pad. Then, just tighten the adjustable straps to the desired length. Assembling the kayak paddle blade is also really easy to do — instead of sliding the paddle’s normal handle into the middle section of the paddle shaft, just attach the included paddle blade.

BLACKFIN Kayak Seat Installation

Lastly, attached to the rear of the kayak seat is a handy zippered storage pouch which is great for stashing small accessories.

BLACKFIN Kayak Seat

Insulated BLACKFIN SUP Deck Bag

Another great accessory to consider is the BLACKFIN deck bag. This is a fully insulated bag that is well-made and features a convenient carrying handle at the top so you can carry it around like a lunchbox.

BLACKFIN Insulated SUP Deck Bag

BLACKFIN Deck Bag Top

On the top exterior of the bag is a zippered storage pouch, and there’s an elastic bungee cord with plastic mounting hooks on the bottom of the bag for securing it to the deck of your paddle board. Of course, the bag will also slip right under either of the Model XL’s existing bungee cord cargo areas.

BLACKFIN SUP Deck Bag Bottom

BLACKFIN Insulated SUP Deck Bag Liner

Shoulder Strap

If you want an easier and more convenient way to carry your board around, iROCKER also has a handy shoulder carry strap which securely attaches to two of the D-rings located along the board’s rails. This carrying strap is adjustable and comes with 4 plastic D-rings for attaching small items with a carabiner, and the underside is lined with a grippy rubber material to keep the strap from slipping off of your shoulder.

BLACKFIN Shoulder Strap

iROCKER Electric Paddle Board Pump

A new accessory for 2019 is iROCKER’s updated electric paddle board pump. While the included Full Throttle Pump does a wonderful job of pumping up the Model XL, nothing beats the hands-free convenience of an electric iSUP pump.

iROCKER Electric Paddle Board Pump

This lightweight and fairly compact pump plugs directly into your vehicle’s cigarette lighter adapter and automatically inflates the Model XL without any effort on your part. There’s an auto-shutoff safety feature that prevents over inflation and the pump also comes with a set of alligator clips that connect directly to your car battery (it’s always nice to have an alternate backup power source just in case your cigarette lighter isn’t working).

BLACKFIN Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker (by Speaqua)

Another awesome new accessory added to iROCKER’s gear lineup this season is the BLACKFIN Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker. Available in two colors, this durable little speaker is 100% waterproof, sand/dust proof, submersible, and even floats.

BLACKFIN Waterproof Speakers

Located on the bottom of the speaker is a removable suction cup. There’s also a threaded insert that allows you to screw the speaker directly onto the new Action Mount at the Model XL’s nose.

BLACKFIN Bluetooth Speaker Bottom

This speaker produces a surprisingly rich sound and is super fun to bring along on while paddling. In addition to playing music directly from your phone, it also has 4GB of built-in memory that can store up to 1,000 songs — perfect for those times when you don’t want to bring your phone along.

BLACKFIN Speaqua Speaker

The internal rechargeable battery provides up to 5 hours of playback and there’s also a really cool speakerphone/microphone with caller-ID function. Last but not least, the speaker supports dual-pairing which means that you and a friend can wirelessly connect and sync two speakers together while out on the water.

Action Mount

If your SUP doesn’t have an action mount or you just want the ability to secure more than one accessory to your BLACKFIN Model XL, iROCKER has add-on action mounts available that you can quickly and easily attach to the top of your board.

iROCKER Action Mount

Waterproof Phone Case

Also available from iROCKER SUP this year is a waterproof cell phone case. Able to protect phones up to 6.5″ x 3.5″ in size, this useful little dry bag comes with a convenient lanyard and even floats with smaller phones (just blow a little air into it before sealing it up).

iROCKER Waterproof Phone Case

Cell Phone Holder

An add-on accessory that works really well when paired with iROCKER’s waterproof phone case, this new cell phone holder quickly screws on to the Model XL’s action mount and keeps your cell phone handy at all times while you’re on the water.

iROCKER SUP Phone Holder

Fishing Rod Holder

New for 2019, the BLACKFIN Fishing Rod Holder quickly attaches to the new Action Mount at the nose of the Model XL, giving anglers a super convenient spot to stash their pole. The mount easily screws on to the Action Mount and is fully adjustable.

Fishing Rod Holder

Warranty

As with all iROCKER paddle boards, the BLACKFIN Model XL is covered by a rock-solid 2-year warranty. This covers you in the event of any manufacturer defects, and the company also throws in a 30-day money back guarantee for added peace of mind. iROCKER stands behind the gear that they make, and they’re well-known for providing a high-level of customer service both before and after a sale is made.

Where to Buy it + Special Offers

BLACKFIN SUP on Beach

The brand new BLACKFIN Model XL iSUP is currently available at iROCKER’s official online store. In addition to offering the lowest prices and a 30-day money back guarantee, iROCKER also includes free shipping and they don’t charge sales tax unless your state requires it. If you currently live outside of the U.S., you can still buy the BLACKFIN Model XL and any of iROCKER’s other boards by using the following links: Canada, UK/EU, and Germany

Final Thoughts

As with the 10’6″ Model X, we were extremely impressed by the 2019 BLACKFIN Model XL. This is an incredibly well-built board that is super fun, feature-rich, and surprisingly affordable. In terms of overall quality, features, and included accessories, the new BLACKFIN Model XL rivals boards costing twice as much, yet it’s priced only slightly higher than the regular iROCKER SUP models. If you’re looking for a versatile, top-shelf board that won’t break the bank, this is it.

Click Here to Buy the New BLACKFIN Model XL

43 thoughts on “BLACKFIN Model XL Review + Discount (2019 SUP)”

  1. Thank you for the excellent review. I really love the looks of the new BLACKFIN paddle boards and the accessories look so nice!

    Would the BLACKFIN XL work well for SUP touring and river camping excursions?

    1. Hello Johanni, thank you for the nice comment.

      Yes, the BLACKFIN XL would be a great choice for both of the activities that you mentioned. It won’t be quite as fast in the water as the more streamlined inflatable SUP touring boards on the market, but it’ll perform just fine. Also, the dual bungee storage areas, additional D-rings, and excellent stability make the BLACKFIN XL a perfect board for overnight SUP camping trips where you need to bring along additional gear.

      Hope this helps. Happy paddling, Johanni!

    2. We’ve just bought the BF XL board w/Kayak Conversion kit. We “were” planning a day trip soon but discovered the paddle end (extra one supplied in conversion kit) DOES NOT FLOAT!!…but the rest of the paddle does. So, that piece is at the bottom of a harbour we practice in…the rest we then tested for flotability in the pool at home.

      If the entire paddle assembly is supposed to have styrofoam inside…this one missed out in the QC test and it’s pricey to replace.

      Otherwise: Absolutely the best damn board on the market. Hands down the best!!! This board is better than that Great Britain based (Red Paddle) SUP outfit as far we’re concerned. We could write pages on how amazing the XL unpacks, inflates, feels in the water…transports etc.

      P&D

  2. How much of the board is covered by the grip pad? Just the black and white sections? I’m looking for a board that has a lot of grip pad coverage so it is safer for dogs and kids to move around on almost all areas of the board. The Hala Carbon Hoss appears to have a larger surface of grip pad, but I’m drawn to the added features and lower price point of the Blackfin XL, I just want to make sure it will cover my needs from a grip standpoint. Thanks!

    1. Hello, Beth. Yes, you’re correct — the deck pad on the BLACKFIN Model XL is the white and black-colored area with the light blue border around it. The traction pad on Hala’s Carbon Hoss definitely provides a bit more coverage near the nose of the board, but I honestly don’t think it’s a big deal. Dogs have absolutely no problem standing on the nose of the Model XL, and the integrated safety grab handles are ideal for paddling around children.

  3. Greetings!

    First, a truly great review. One can only hope to find reviews of such caliber elsewhere, and more often too.

    Second, the SUP business. I am looking for my very first inflatable (or otherwise) board, and after a week of research, I am seriously considering pulling the trigger on the Blackfin XL! It seems to have everything I’d want in/on a board – stability, durability, versatility, and capacity.

    My primary uses would be recreational/workout paddling, cruising, and perhaps a bit of fishing. With that said, I am 5’10” 220 lbs. Considering those parameters, as well as number of reviews and suggestions online, I am inclined to think that my best choice would be an 11’+ board.

    I would certainly appreciate any additional advice you might have for a brand new SUP-er, such as the best dry bag and perhaps a sit-on cooler that would pair up nicely with the Blackfin XL, or any other board suggestion you’d have.

    And once again, stellar job with all the reviews, many thanks, cheers!

    1. Hi Pedja, thank you very much for the nice comment. I’m so glad that you enjoyed the review.

      The BLACKFIN XL definitely sounds like it will be a perfect fit for you. As far as accessories go, I’ve done a number of dry bag reviews which you can go over. Some additional bags that I haven’t reviewed but would recommend checking out are those by Watershed and Fishpond. As far as sit-on coolers go, I’d go with the ORCA 20 or YETI’s Roadie 20.

      Hope that helps, Pedja! Happy paddling…

  4. No place to suction cup on attachments correct?
    GoPro, lights, speakers etc. many attach to a rigid board via suction cup…. thoughts?

    1. Hi Steve, thanks for your comment.

      You’re correct — you can’t use suction cups on inflatables. The most popular workaround is to securely affix attachment points with 3M adhesive backing or glue. Depending on exactly what you have in mind, you could also rig everything to a plastic milk crate and then attach that to the nose of your board using a SUPpocket Crate Pad.

      Hope that helps!

  5. I’m really struggling here between the iRocker 11′ All-Around and the Blackfin XL.

    I’m 6’1″ at 210lbs and would like to use the board with my daughters (6 and 4) and even with my wife and I at the same time (5’2″ 110lbs). It seems the iRocker 11′ All-Around isn’t really that far off from the Blackfin XL in terms of being able to handle this.

    Then of course I would like to use it by myself as well and am worried if I get the XL that it will just be too large and won’t move as quickly/streamlined through the water. Does the XL offer that much more stability when I’m to use it with my wife or kids that it will be worth the $200 price and peace of mind when out on the water?

    Any help would be great! Thank you.

    1. Hey Tom, thanks for your comment…

      The Model XL is definitely a lot more stable — please keep in mind that in addition to being longer, it’s also 2″ wider than the ALL-AROUND 11′ which really impacts overall stability. Additionally, it’s more buoyant so it’ll do much better with heavier loads.

      As far as paddling it solo, it’s a blast. I’m quite a bit smaller than you and I have zero issues taking it out on my own.

      Bottom line — both are great boards, but if you’re planning to load up the entire family on it, I’d definitely go with the BLACKFIN.

      Hope that helps, Tom. Happy paddling…

  6. I would like very much to buy this sup (BLACKFIN Model XL), but I understand they don’t ship to my country.

    Will it be available on amazon?

    1. Shalom, Boaz. Unfortunately, the BLACKFIN line is only available on iROCKER’s website and there are no plans to make them available on Amazon.

      Do you know anyone who is coming from the U.S. for the Holidays? If so, you could ask them to bring the board for you as it can be checked with their luggage. Just purchase the board, have it shipped to their address in the U.S., and then they can bring it along with them.

      Hope that helps. Shavua tov and happy paddling…

  7. I currently have a peak… so far it hasn’t popped.

    Looking to get 2 new boards…
    We will be getting an 11’ all around and I’m stuck between the Blackfins x vs xl.

    I’m a big girl- 5’10 220# I hate falling and generally sup on my knees. Looking to start standing. Possibly fishing from the board and will be purchasing a kayak kit. The Blackfins is for me as I want the stability.
    If I’m not using the board my kid and his friends will use it.

    We travel with our boards. Generally small lakes the Mississippi and to the ocean over spring break where we use it on calm or small waves.

    Again, I’m trying to decide between the X and XL.
    I’m committed to buying and 11’ All Around in addition to one of the blackfins.

    Thanks for your help

    1. Hi Maria, thanks for your comment…

      I’m glad to hear that you haven’t had any issues with your PEAK board. Unfortunately, they’ve had a lot of recent problems with seam blowouts and leaks.

      Regarding your question, I’d definitely go with the Model XL. Both BLACKFIN boards will give you more than enough stability for standing and I think you’ll really enjoy the additional speed of the XL. By the way, be sure that you order the boards at the same time as you’ll get an additional discount from iROCKER when checking out.

      Hope that helps, Maria. Happy paddling!

      1. Ended up purchasing the 10″ All Around as it had better maneuverability and the Blackfin XL with a kayak kit. Thank you for your help.
        I’ll let you know how it goes.

  8. Hi,

    I plan to buy the Blackfin XL, I would like like to take the board out to the sea, not big wave sea but rather calm condition sea side paddling with a bit of small waves. Does the XL paddling as great as it is on the river?

  9. Hey there on ur previous recommendation I am now trying to decide between the blackfin xl and the the thurso Waterwalker 11. Now after watching the new reviews on both boards im struggling im not a big girl and will have my 11 yr old son with me @ times for some fishing looking for something more stable than my 12.ft naish one which lacks the stability I love both these boards my concerns are is the xl to much board I also don’t want a slow board when im solo or paddling with my friends thanks so much ur videos are great!!

    1. Hey Shelby! Thanks for your nice comment.

      Both are great boards but I’d recommend the Model XL for you. You’ll definitely appreciate the added stability for fishing and paddling around your son, and the grab handles at the nose and tail of the board are great for kids. Also, you’ll be able to use a fishing rod holder with the Model XL’s new action mount — a great new feature.

      Lastly, the Model XL isn’t a slow board at all and the weight reduction for 2019 will certainly make it easier for you to handle.

      I hope that helps, Shelby. If you have any other questions, just holler!

  10. Hello, and thanks for the great reviews on the Blackfin boards. Looking at a model X vs XL. I’m just looking for some leisurely paddling, will be getting the kayak attachments. I’m 5’7″ about 130 and will be the main user. Hubby may use it from time to time. Hes 5’9″ and 200. Not sure on the differences pros and cons on vs the other. Thoughts? Thanks so much

    1. Hey Heidi, thanks for the nice comment — I’m glad you enjoyed the reviews.

      Both boards would work just fine for you and your husband. In terms of differences, the Model X is easier to maneuver while the Model XL is faster and tracks better.

  11. Hi. My family is new to paddle boarding. My wife bought a nice Starboard 12’6′ touring board last year and now I love it as well! My son and I were going to share a board for this year and then if he likes it as much as I did, will maybe grab another next year.

    I am 6’4′, 210 ish, athletic and aggressive skier, moto crosser, pretty much all action sports.

    My son is shorter, maybe 5’11”, 175 ish, but also very athletic.

    My question…I was going to get the bigger 12’6″ Blackfin model but would we be best off with the shorter 11’6″ to suit us both better at first? I sort of wanted the bigger board,as I do love speed, but want my son to be able to enjoy it as well when he takes it out… We will mostly be on bigger lakes out here in BC.

    I have read the above comments, but am curious to hear what you say regarding our sizes.

    Thank you for the awesome reviews! Great job.

    1. Hi Chris, welcome! Thanks for your nice comment…

      You can’t go wrong with either board, but based on the fact that your wife already has a touring board and your family is so athletic, I’d probably go with the longer 12’6″ Model V. I think you’ll really enjoy the added speed on the large lakes in your area and the Model V still offers plenty of stability with its 32″ width.

      Where the Model XL really shines is added stability and versatility. It’s a larger all-around board that offers extreme stability and can do everything from SUP fitness to fishing.

      Hope that’s helpful, Chris. If you need any more help, just holler.

  12. Hi,

    Thanks for the great review. I am a beginner to watersports and SUP but I intend to get the blackfin XL 2019. But before I proceed I hope you can clarify my doubt in regards to its durability. In fact my question is applicable to isups in general but to the blackfin XL specifically:

    -Is there a limitation in terms of the inflate/deflate cycle per isup board?

    -Does the isup get damaged through the inflate/deflate cycle in the long run ?

    I ask because typically I intend to deflate, fold, and pack the sup after each usage in order to store it in my basement (I live in an apartment). Hence I am curious to know how it would behave if I want to use it 3 or 4 times per week in the summertime…

    Finally, under normal usage (flat water) what is the life span I can expect from the blackfin XL.

    It is quite an investment and I wish to get all the info before I get it.

    Thanks for your reply.

    1. Hello Souley, thank you very much for your nice comment. It’s honestly impossible for me to give you an exact answer regarding lifespan because there are so many factors that influence a board’s longevity (how it’s cared for, time left in the hot sun, etc.). What I can tell you is that iROCKER makes incredibly tough inflatable SUPs and their 2-year warranty is rock-solid. I’ve never had a single iROCKER SUP fail and the Model XL should last you many years assuming it’s well-cared-for.

      As far as deflating your board after each and every use, that’s no problem whatsoever and it’s what most people do.

      I hope that helps, Souley. If you have any other questions, just let me know…

      1. Thanks for the quick response, appreciate your feedback.

        I understand that is not easy to provide an absolute answer due to the multiple factors involved…

        Like that inflate/deflate after each usage is the usual use case, I will go ahead with the XL. I feel More secure for the purchase.

        Keep up the great reviews, thanks and Cheers

  13. Hello, I’m looking to create a fishing sup. Can I attach a Bote tac rac and Scotty rod mounts to the Blackfin xl deck? Thank you

  14. Hi,

    Can the US fin box support FCS or FSC II fins? just concerned about replacements or wanting to upgrade the fins in the future.

    1. Hey Graham, thanks for your comment. Yes, the center fin uses a standard US fin box that’s fully compatible with FCS fins. The side fins, however, use a different system which utilizes a flip lock to secure them into place.

      Hope that helps. If you have any other questions, just let me know.

  15. Hello and thanks for your great reviews!

    I need help deciding between the Blackfin Model X and Model XL. I am new to SUP and my balance is terrible, so stability is important when trying to stand up. However, I also really want to use the Blackfin as a kayak, and paddle long distances sitting down around Lake Tahoe, lagoons and a little bit of ocean, too! A lovely Blackfin sales rep recommended the Model X for me because (in her opinion), it would be better for kayaking because it is more maneuverable. However, If it’s too slow I might get frustrated. But if the Model XL is too hard to maneuver, I might also get frustrated! I really have no idea which would be best and was hoping you could tell me, since you have thoroughly tested and reviewed both, is there a really big discernible difference between the two models? If I wanted to kayak on it for several miles and in and out of coves and and harbors and around boats, which would you recommend over the other?

    Thanks for your help!

    1. Hi Heather, thanks for the nice comment!

      Both boards are unbelievable stable and super easy to ride — the main differences are that the Model X is more maneuverable (as iROCKER’s sales rep mentioned) while the Model XL is faster and delivers better tracking performance. Like the sales rep that you spoke with, I think you’ll do absolutely fine with the Model X and will have a blast with it paddling in all the areas that you mentioned.

      I hope that’s helpful, Heather. If you have any other questions, just let me know and I’ll do my best to help out.

  16. Loved the review, pictures and videos, thanks!

    I am deciding between the Model XL and the Model V. I will be using it as a family board (I Have a 4 year old and 1.5 year old), I will also be using it as a touring board with my Wife. Does the V give enough stability to have two kids, or would that make paddling a little more difficult vs picking the Model XL? How noticeable is the speed difference between the XL and V? Will I be disappointed that I didn’t chose the V over the XL because of the speed difference, when touring by myself? How noticeable is the stability difference between the two?

    I am 5’9″ about 155 lbs, currently have the Body Glove Performer 11 ISUP 11′ so have some experience paddling. Looking to add a Blackfin to the collection so my Wife can be on one and I can be on the Blackfin with one or both kids.

    What would you recommend?

    1. Hi Tyler, thanks a lot for your nice comment…

      Have you checked out our review of the Model V? In it are some shots of me paddling our 2- and 3-year olds. They have a great time on it and there are no issues with it feeling unstable, but the Model XL definitely offers another level of stability.

      Since you’re experienced, I’d go with the Model V as it’s faster and the 32″ width makes it easier to paddle.

  17. Great review!! You along with another youtuber, to remain nameless, helped my family decide on this Model XL. Oh, I can’t forget to mention I love the fact iRocker supports our military with a discount! My question to you is this: Have you tried, or know any other person who tried to rig a cover/canopy of some sort for shade and possible light rain blockage? I think this would be a great idea using possibly fiberglass rods and sheets or other light material while utilizing the D-hooks to allow it to stand/secure itself. Thoughts? This would be the best accessory hands down for those who just want to chill and take it very slow on the water!!!!!!! I may have to take this on as a pet project once we receive the SUP!! Taking it on a 4 day camping trip with the wife to celebrate our anniversary! She’s going to be surprised!

    1. Hey Eric! Thanks a lot for your nice comment, I’m so happy to hear that our review was helpful for you in the decision-making process.

      Your idea is definitely something that is doable, I’m just not aware of anything like that on the market at this point (specifically made for SUPs). The only canopy options I’ve personally seen are designed for kayaks and inflatable boats.

  18. Michelle Pedersen

    Hi,

    Thanks for great reviews. I’ve just decided to buy a sup, and it is going to be either a irocker or blackfin board.

    I’ve read all your reviews, a lot of other ones and watched videos.

    I’m still in doubt what to choose.

    I have never been on any board before 😂 but since I live right next to the canals of Copenhagen habour (people ride sups, swim and there is a lot of motorboats) I want to be on the water as well. I would also like to take the board to the beach and suntan on the water a bit away from the crowded beach. I think I most often would bring my boyfriend or sister for company, but I might do some paddling alone as well. I’m 5 foot 11 inches and 180 pounds ( my boyfriend is 6 foot 3 inches and 210 pounds) so the weight capacity plays a role.

    Since there can be some waves from motorboats in the canals, the board should be able to handle that as well.

    What to prioritize: stability or maneuverability? I also imagine I would like some speed but you can’t get it all, and since I’m a complete beginner I guess that’s not so important

    I have considered the allround, X, XL and V.

    It sounds like the XL is the best for stability for more than 1 person but also best on completely flat water, so I’m wondering about waves. Then it sounds like the V might be easier to maneuver? Would the cheaper (price also plays a role) Allround be good enough (would it perform ok with a weight closer to its max). The X is the widest so maybe that is nice for suntanning.

    Would you be able to recommend one of the boards for my purposes? (As you can see my thoughts are all over the place).

    Best
    Michelle

    1. Hey Michelle! The Model XL will be ideal for you — it’ll give you additional speed over both the Model X and ALL-AROUND 11′ and more stability than the Model V (which you’ll really appreciate in choppy water). It’s a super fun board and one of my favorites — you won’t be disappointed with it.

  19. Just got my blackfin XL and it’s the best inflatable I’ve stood on, I’m sold for life , portable , takes about 10 mins to fully inflate which is half the time from my previous board/pump , if you in the market for an inflatable , this board is the best in the market

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