Zray A4 Paddleboard 11’6″ Inflatable SUP Review

Sometimes, size does matter. The Zray A4 Touring inflatable standup paddleboard (iSUP) is a sizable board with a lot of other features that add to its uniqueness. It’s manufactured by Zray sports, a leader in personal sports watercraft production.

The added extra surface area makes the Zray A4 more stable and allows for increased carrying capacity. It is also constructed with a double layer shell to maintain its integrity and compensate for potentially heavy loads. This model is large and durable, but it still manages the maneuverability and agility one would expect from any other touring model.

Type: Inflatable SUP (iSup)
Suitable for: Touring on rivers, lakes or other mild to intermediate conditions
Rider Experience: All skill levels (particularly beginners and novices)
Length: 11’6″
Thickness: 6”

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Sizable Advantages

zray-a4-inflatable-paddleboardThe Zray A4 touring iSUP is of above average size when compared to most touring iSUPs on the market, and that size comes with benefits. The increased length makes the board well suited for single or multiple riders as well as larger amounts of cargo.

The Zray A4 holds all that weight with 6-inch thick drop-stitched material to give it a weight capacity of up to 352 pounds. So not only can it carry extra people and luggage, but it is also strong enough to do so reliably for a significant lifespan.

The width of the Zray A4 is also slightly above average, coming in at 32 inches. That isn’t all that much wider, but the added width, however slight, aids in stability and helps to cut down a lot of the wobbling. This increased ease of use makes the Zray A4 a great choice for beginners who haven’t built up their balance or strength yet, or for riders who plan to take on passengers frequently. Cut down on those embarrassing falls!

Adventure Ready

zray-isupPortability is one of the main draws of inflatable standup paddleboards, and the Zray A4 touring has it in spades. Despite its larger size, the Zray A4 weighs in at a mere 25 pounds. Even while inflated, the no-slip carrying handles make it easy to carry around. It also folds up easily into its included carrying case when deflated, which also has room for the other added goodies like the high-pressure hand pump. The carrying case also sports backpack straps so that it can be easily trekked in and out of an adventure.

After arriving at the destination, the Zray A4 touring is ready to go in minutes. The included high-pressure hand pump can inflate the Zray A4 to the maximum pressure of 15 psi in under ten minutes. Once inflated, the detachable main fin is easy to secure by sliding it into place and securing with a pin that is tethered to the board, so it doesn’t get lost. After the outing is over, deflating it is just as easy as it will quickly lose air as it is folded back into shape for storage in its backpack.

Top Features and Specifications

  • Durable and Rugged: Zray constructs the A4 with 6-inch thick military grade PVC to resist scratches, nicks and other damage. Reinforced nose protects against collisions.
  • High Surface Area: Increased length and width provides more area for passengers and increases stability.
  • Easy to Use: Increased stability and responsive maneuverability make this board an easy one for first-time riders.
  • Exceptional Rigidity: Boasts impressive rigidity and stiffness when inflated to maximum psi.
  • High Weight Limit: Can handle up to 352 pounds while on water.
  • Smooth Ride: Three fin system (two fixed, one removable) and a strengthened forehead helps the Zray A4 cut smoothly through water in a variety of conditions.
  • High Quality Extras: Several extras included with purchase such as the carrying backpack, high-pressure hand pump, adjustable (66″ to 87″) aluminum paddle, footrest and closing belt to keep the board folded up while it’s in the bag.
  • Expansion Ready: Sports 12 high-intensity D-rings in various places on the board to allow for towing, installing a kayak seat (not included) or other add-ons. It also comes with preinstalled bungees cord straps on the forehead area.
  • Quick to Get Started: Fast inflation via a high-pressure valve and rapid deflation and storage into its carrying bag.
  • Nonslip Surface: Soft EVA traction footpad for safety and comfort. Prevents slips and adds to rigidity with its 4mm thickness.
  • Versatile Performance: The advantages of size without sacrificing performance.

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What Customers Are Saying

zray-a4-paddle-boardBuyers loved how the Zray A4 touring handles and stays firm in the face of rough conditions. The Zray A4’s rigidity was also impressive to buyers; it’s comparable to a standard epoxy SUP. They were impressed how little the inflatable SUP bent or buckled during paddling or on heavy chop.

Customers were delighted that the extra size translated to better functionality, not weakness. The easy to inflate and deflate board is definitely a hit with customers, especially at its relatively low price point.

There are surprisingly little negative opinions about the Zray A4 touring mostly because this board accomplishes everything it sets out to do. It isn’t the fastest or flashiest board, but buyers didn’t purchase this board for that. There were some concerns about the included paddle being a bit too flexible during paddling, however.

But these downsides aren’t even really downsides, just natural weaknesses of a board that Zray Sports built with different intentions. The Zray A4 is a recreational touring board that doesn’t need to go super-fast and as such doesn’t need a heavy duty or fancy paddle. It does exactly what it is designed to do, and it does it quite well. It may not win any races, but it’s a fun and smooth ride.

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Final Thoughts

zray-a4-inflatable-paddle-boardFor a reliable and high capacity iSUP, there aren’t many better options than the Zray A4 touring model. Its impressive size adds to the stability of the board and makes for a versatile experience. Multiple riders and cargo can ride on the board with ease. The sturdy construction means that it won’t buckle under all that weight. The high quality of the materials and construction of the product is unexpected, considering its reasonable price.

Despite its impressive size, the Zray A4 is surprisingly lightweight and makes for an exceptionally portable board. The included extras make inflating and deflating a snap, and provide a lot of options for use. The Zray A4 is an excellent option for novices, beginners and intermediates looking for a fun, easy and smooth ride. It’s a superb all-around inflatable paddleboard that is perfect for rivers and lakes.