I bought two Ardent 2.4's about a year ago. The front tire is still going strong. I destroyed the rear tire on the 2nd XC ride, probably on a sharp rock. But heck, it's not very rocky riding here and the tires were so new they still had their little rubber whiskers. Maxxis gave me no love, and attributed it to natural wear and tear. Whatever.
Performance-wise the tires handle well. They like to drift as you begin to lay the bike over but then hook up solidly when tipped enough to engage the sidewall knobs. This feeling is pretty predictable and often fun too.