Wednesday, July 18, 2012

ASICS Skysensor Neo...

By Frank

The ASICS Skysensor Neo...

The ASICS Skysensor Neo isn't really a new model by ASICS, in fact it was releasd to the market mid year 2011. However I recently got it "deployed" out of the box and used it for my KL Marathon 2012. A Japanese spec racing flat that is highly popular in the land of the rising sun, this is one particular model that is pretty tough to find in our local retailers.

Lateral view of the Skysensor Neo...

Medial view of the Skysensor Neo...

The Skysensor Neo is a unisex model. As it's of Japanese specification, sizing will be a little tricky as I found out from many years back that it can be pretty inconsistent compared to the regular ASICS models. It will be good to personally try them out at the store itself before committing. Besides, since this is of a racing series, they tend to fit like a glove which I kind of like it since I have a narrow feet. As for those with wider feet say like 2E width, tough luck then. Weighing in at about 183 grams for size US8.5, the Skysensor Neo falls under the neutral racing flat category.

Front view of the SkySensor. Note the ventilation on the toebox area and also the narrow width....

The Skysensor Neo is a very low profile shoe, something which I've learn to like after years of running. Although looking minimal, this isn't a minimalist shoe as I measured around a 8mm differential in heel to toe drop. The midsole is built on top of ASICS 2 very popular material call Solyte, which offers lightweight and cushioning, and SpEVA which offers durability. I am not really a big fan of Solyte as I find that it offers too much cushioning. Most of you will have know that I prefer firmer compound shoes and therefore rather to have the midsole to be made fully of SpEVA as it offers pretty good durability (if comparing EVA rubbers) and also good bounce.

Upclose on the Solyte midsole...

However, as both Solyte and SpEVA are made of EVA rubber, durability is enhanced on the rear foot and forefoot areas using ASICS High Abrasion Rubber or more widely known as AHAR+. I can swear by this rubber compound as it is one of the key material that gives ASICS shoe excellent durability. And this is also the material that give the shoe a firmer outsole.

I did take note of a separate material on the the midsole over at the medial forefoot area. It kind of look and feel like a stability posting as the rubber compound is certainly firmer when pressed. However, I did not feelt any discomfort during my run with the shoe hence I can't comment much on it. Whether functional or part of cosmetic design, I leave it as of a mystery.

The greyish silver area of another rubber compound suspected to be a stability posting...

The shoe has nothing fancy to be shout about. Not much of technologies are used in building it as only a rear gel cushioning is used over at rear outsole. Coupled with ASICS Magic Ventilation which I don't think it's magical enough to offer better airflow through the shoe, and also WetGrip technology on the outsole's fore foot area to allow better traction, this is all that makes up the shoe. Speaking about the WetGrip, it actually worked pretty good as tested on the wet morning of the recent KL Marathon. Excellent traction on wet tarmac and decent enough on the smooth surfaces like those red inter-lockable brick surface. Otherwise, everything else that builds the shoe are just plain overlays meshes, synthetics and normal flat shoe laces.

A couple of drainage pots on the outsole. 
WetGrip is made possible with the tread design on the blue area of the forefoot...

Overall, I find the ASICS Skysensor Neo to be a pleasant pair. I'm not sure how will it compared to the pretty similar ASICS Hyperspeed series, but overall I just like the simplicity of it.

Many thanks to ASICS Malaysia and Ms. Kris Lee for giving me the opportunity to test out the ASICS SkySensor Neo.

The ASICS Skysensor Neo retails at RM469.00 and can be found at major ASICS stores and dealers nationwide.

6 comments:

Nick Phillips said...

Never ran in an Asics before. Looks like a good pair of shoes though.

eezard_vazz said...

woww, i`m definitely will hav those Skysensor b4 this comin PBIM 4 my FMV ... I`m a neutral runner too... Thanx 4 da gr8 review dude!

Diket said...

Bro,

Does it really still can be found in asics retailers nationwide? I want to try it.

Frank@Runnerz said...

Your best bet will be ASICS concept store at Pavilion KL.

Diket said...

Thanks bro! Have a good run!

Alvin Ang said...

The Hyperspeed is another overlooked gem of a shoe. The distinct difference frim asics' other lineups is the absence of the plastic torsion plate, which I find its absence promotes a more natural gait. The feel becomes very flexible as a result, though some may say it is squishy. It has a lower drop of around 6mm and is a bit xloser to ground in the forefoot.