This one is a really really really late review but I guess when it comes to shoes, the more mileage you put on them, the more credible your review will get. So after putting on around 250 kilometers on this pair, I can finally tell my experience with them. Let’s go.
I met this particular shoe model at a point in my life where my Salomon shoes were already deteriorating. My Salomon Wings Flyte 2 already had about 300 kilometers in them, and for long distances, the toebox just wasn’t wide enough for my expanding feet. One of my friends posted in Facebook about the New Balance 590 v3. It was a good looking trail shoe with an affordable price tag. So I went straight to the New Balance shoe store at BGC High Street and tried them on.
Oh ma lawd, the fit was perfect and comfortable. Khat tried them on and she liked the fit too. So without any hesitation, we bought a pair each. The 590 v3 is marketed as an all terrain shoe and while I wouldn’t use it for road running, it’s comfortable enough to use in my daily walking.
I just have to point out that this is my first New Balance shoe. I bought this months before the Fresh Foam Beacon. I’ve heard of the brand before but no one has really recommended it to me. Now I’m a convert and I actually prefer their models for the wide toebox and superior comfort.
Fit and Comfort
Just like what happened with the Beacon, as soon as my feet got into place, this shoe was just meant for me. At first glance, I thought the shoe would be heavy, but I was pleasantly surprised at how light it was for its look. The only downside was the lack of any quicklace technology. This is gonna be my gripe for all non-Salomon shoes. But I easily bought a third-party quicklace and that solved the problem quick.
Wide Toe Box
This is probably the most important aspect of a shoe for me. Especially for trail races that reach 100 kilometers, my foot will expand inside the shoe. That wasn’t a problem with this shoe because it’s so roomy. In fact, it’s so roomy that on the downhills, my foot kept sliding forwards and my toes were already bumping the front wall. But after adjusting the laces, there was no more concern at all.
The cushioning is decent. Walking is no problem for this shoe, but I have found that on the trails it’s not as cushion-y. However, it is still a lot better than the stiff midsoles I have experienced with my Salomon shoes. The shoe is flexible and provides comfort without being too maximalist like Hoka or Altra shoes. The drop is at 8mm as per the video review but it’s barely noticeable.
I recently finished a 100-kilometer distance without much foot soreness. The advertised ACTEVA rubber does what it says; absorbs impact and keeps the feet fresh even on long distances.
As long as the terrain is offroad, this shoe has got you covered. From muddy trails to stony pathways, this shoe performs well. What I have found to be a bit annoying is because of the cushion surrounding the foot and the ankle, dirt and debris can easily go into the shoe. This can be mended easily with a gaiter, but since I don’t use one, I just have to take the shoe off every now and then.
The grip of the shoe is good! The only thing this slips on would be wet and mossy rocks. Of course, that depends on proper footing of the runner, but I haven’t encountered any problem with this shoe when it comes to traction.
I’ve only felt the weight of this shoe when it’s wet or when it’s covered in mud. In dry runs, the shoe is barely noticeable. It’s probably the lightest trail running shoe I’ve worn, especially when it comes to perceived effort. It’s fit is good enough that your foot will hardly notice it as external weight.
The synthetic mesh upper is very breathable and I have never felt my feet get hot in the shoe. This may be because I’ve never used it in extremely hot races, but I have no complaints with the shoe’s temperature.
Durability and Protection
The upper of this shoe is amazing. After putting in the distance, it doesn’t show a lot of wear and tear. And that’s after ankle-deep mud and technical routes. I’ve used it from hiking to trail running and it provides the same experience every time. There is reinforcement in the toe and ankle areas so the only times I’ve felt pain was from hitting rocks with the side of my foot.
The design of the shoe has a lot of seams and stitches, but they don’t seem to affect comfort in any way. Plus they are really strong seams as they are still holding the entire shoe together until now.
After a lot of technical trails, the outsole is still holding up. However, there has been some slight peeling in the forefoot parts of one shoe. This is the area where my toes usually hit some rocks along the trail. But this hasn’t had a big impact on the shoe’s overall performance yet and it looks like it can still handle a lot more mileage. The compound is quite thick too as it shields my foot from feeling the rocks and pebbles of the trail. All in all, this shoe provides good protection from the elements.
Surprisingly, this shoe shields from water quite well. It took a bit of time before my socks got wet even when running through wet trails. Of course, once water gets in, there’s just no other way but to accept it. It’s not marketed as waterproof or even water-resistant, but I’m satisfied with its performance in keeping water out.
+ Good cushioning for a trail shoe
+ Handles all kinds of offroad terrain
+ Durable construction
+ Affordable price
– Debris gets in easily
– Heavy when wet
– No quicklace system
On my most recent visit to the New Balance store, it seems that there is already a 590 v4 on stock. It looks visually different from the v3 but upon trying it on, the comfort is still the same. I’m not decided on buying the newest version yet, as I think I can still use the v3 for more mileage, but who knows? It’s Christmas and it’s time for gift-giving. 😉
I’m also liking the Fresh Foam Gobi Trail V3 though. My gawd, New Balance, what have you done to me!? Stop putting out amazing shoes!!!
Eyes on the trail!