PHI BEAT 2 & BEAT 2 light review

We tested both versions in strong winds, thermals, light and strong soaring conditions, we induced collapses, and more! 

Overall Impressions

The PHI BEAT 2 and BEAT 2 Light gliders maintain the high standards set by the original BEAT, offering refined performance with significant improvements in internal construction and material choices. Both gliders excel in various conditions, providing a confident, smooth, and responsive flying experience.

Packaging and Accessories

Both gliders come with the PHI Harmonica bag and a small product pack, which includes repair patches and a mini wind sock. The Harmonica bag is highly praised for its lightweight, compact design and versatility, allowing it to be used as a compressed bag or left open for wrapping around the harness.

Construction and Materials

The BEAT 2 and BEAT 2 Light showcase excellent craftsmanship, with a notably clean and sharp appearance. The internal construction has been fine-tuned, leading to a smoother and more solid glider. The use of mini ribs along the leading edge and fully sheathed lower lines contributes to the gliders' high-performance feel, akin to higher-class gliders.

Ground Handling

Ground handling with the BEAT 2 and BEAT 2 Light is remarkably straightforward. The gliders build a stable wall easily, and the tips stay down even in light winds. They transition smoothly from a clean wall to launch without surging or hanging back, making them very user-friendly, especially for mid-B class pilots.

In the air

In the air, both gliders feel solid and confidence-inspiring without being overly dampened. They provide good feedback, allowing pilots to sense and react to air conditions effectively. This balance makes them suitable for pilots who prefer a communicative glider that still offers stability and ease of handling.


The handling of the BEAT 2 and BEAT 2 Light is agile and responsive, allowing for quick, efficient turns. This is particularly beneficial in thermals, where the gliders can hook into lift effectively and maintain a solid climb rate. They perform well in varied conditions, from weak thermals to stronger, more turbulent air.

Speed System

Using the speed bar, both gliders maintain a clean and solid shape even at full speed. The BEAT 2 and BEAT 2 Light have a moderate to slightly light bar pressure, remaining consistent throughout the travel. Although the standard risers do not include a BC bridge system, it can be optionally added for those who prefer it. The gliders exhibit minimal dimpling and flutter, contributing to their efficiency and solid feel.

Big Ears and Safety

Big ears on the BEAT 2 and BEAT 2 Light are easy to engage and maintain. They do not pop out on their own, requiring a bit of brake input to release. The pressure to pull them in is light, and holding them is not strenuous. The gliders are very solid and collapse-resistant, making them reliable in various conditions. The stall point is clear and forgiving, appropriate for the mid-B class.

Target Audience

  • Pilots Upgrading from A-Class or Low B-Class Gliders

The Beat 2 is an excellent choice for pilots seeking to transition from an A-class or low B glider to something with more sportiness and better handling, without jumping to a high B-class glider.

  • Pilots Downgrading from High B-Class Gliders

For pilots currently flying high B gliders but seeking more comfort and stability, the Beat 2 provides a safer and more stable option without a significant loss in performance.

  • Not Ideal for Beginners

While the Beat 2 is well-behaved and refined, it’s not typically recommended as a first wing. Beginners would be better off starting with a well-performing A glider or a low B glider like the Sonata 2 or Symphonia.


  1. Design and Aesthetics

    • The Beat 2 boasts a unique and visually appealing design. While initial reactions to its aesthetics may vary, many pilots find that it grows on them over time. It offers a range of colors, catering to different preferences.
  2. Performance

    • The Beat 2 delivers a noticeable improvement in performance. Pilots can expect sharper handling and more precise control, particularly when biting into thermals. This refinement makes the Beat 2 feel like a perfected version of its predecessor.
  3. Comfort and Stability

    • This glider is well-suited for pilots moving up from an A-class or low B glider. It offers a blend of sportiness and comfort, making it an ideal step-up option. It retains stability without sacrificing the enjoyable handling characteristics.
  4. Versatility

    • The Beat 2 caters to pilots who may find high B gliders too demanding. It also appeals to those flying high B gliders who seek more comfort and safety without a significant performance downgrade.
  5. Convenient Package

    • The Beat 2 comes with a concertina bag and PHI harmonica, enhancing its overall package.


  1. Lack of BC Bridge System

    • One potential downside is the absence of a BC Bridge system, which some pilots might prefer. However, this can be mitigated by opting for R7 risers, which include the BC Bridge, effectively addressing this concern.
  2. Design Preferences

    • The glider’s unique design might not appeal to everyone at first glance. Some pilots may take time to appreciate its aesthetics fully.

Is it worth the upgrade?

Definitely. The Beat 2 offers noticeable improvements in performance and handling. Pilots upgrading from the original Beat will find the new version tighter, more refined, and overall, a perfected iteration of an already beloved glider.

Light Version

The Beat 2 and Beat 2 Light are essentially the same glider, differing mainly in materials and risers. The light version behaves similarly to the standard version, with the usual differences expected between standard and lightweight models.


In conclusion, the Beat 2 is a refined, versatile glider suitable for a range of pilots looking to either step up or step down within the B class. Its design, performance, and handling make it a standout choice in its category.

Video review

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