New balance Reviews

New Balance 1080V11 Review

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SCORE: 8.5/10                                         (May 22, 2021)

Weight: 9.3 oz (263grams)

Heel Drop: 10mm

Shoe Type: Neutral cushioning shoe



  • Highly breathable
  • Bouncy
  • Lightweight
  • Responsive
  • Bootie upper for a snug fit
  • Sufficient cushioning
  • Stable


The toe box may still be narrow for someone with a broader foot.


Take Away

The previous version was a near-perfect shoe that did not deserve changing. However, New Balance took the risk of tweaking things that did not work to develop the best version of 1080v10. 

New Balance chopped off some weight by retouching the upper but retained the superb cushioning. If you loved the experience with the previous version, then you won’t go wrong with 1080v11.


New Balance 1080v11 First Impression



 When I first heard about the release of the 1080v11, I thought New Balance had turned out to be a killjoy. “Why do they want to ruin a perfect shoe? When did New Balance become a Grinch?” I wondered.

 If you have New Balance 1080v10, you will understand my sentiments. 1080V10 is a revolutionary shoe of the 1080 series, and I never imagined New Balance coming up with an updated version before the excitement settles.

Two months ago, I decided to get myself a new pair of 1080v11. I had to be part of the thrill. I went for the blue color and what excited me was the premium look from an enhanced structure, revamped vamps and improved lacing system.

Just like in the 1080v10, my foot sank deep into the bootie upper and sat on a comfortable Ortholite sock liner. I immediately felt comfortable and snug fit.

My first trial was on the road. I did 3miles of a slow run, then alternated from tempo, base and long runs for another 7 miles. The initial 3-mile run felt pretty firm, but the upper and midsole gave in with time, and I could feel softness and responsiveness under the foot and a more welcoming upper. I noted that it rode easy and bouncy, just like 1080v10, especially at a slow pace and was quite responsive when picking up the pace.


New Balance 1080 V11 Sole Component

1080V11 MIDSOLE1080V11 MIDSOLE 2


The midsole comprises the Fresh Foam X, a soft and bouncy cushioning foam used by New Balance in many of its neutral daily trainer shoes. The midsole forms a rocker shape towards the forefoot. The geometry works well with the cushioning to increase running efficiency. As I landed, the soft cushioning absorbed the landing impact while creating a springy effect from the heel towards the midfoot. I could feel the rocker forefoot picking up the momentum, making toe-off easy and seamless. Hence, at a slow run, the ride felt easy and exciting. I also felt soft underneath the foot.

To increase compression and rebound, New Balance put a ring of honeycomb-like engravings around the midsole. The compression is conspicuous for a heel striker because the heel zone is highly staked with cushioning. The springiness increases when picking up pace.

Both 1080v11 and 1080v10 have the same outsole engineering. The outsole is entirely covered with blown rubber, and hard abrasive rubber placed strategically around the heel and towards the edge of the forefoot. The blown rubber does not interfere with the soft and springy ride of Fresh Foam X.


I could feel a tremendous amount of traction and stability. I did not experience slippage when I ran on wet surfaces. Still, it is advisable to stick to running on road and concrete. Avoid grass and trail because the lugs are not aggressive enough to handle such critical terrains. However, the rubber guarantees you maximum durability.

There are very pronounced flex grooves around the forefoot, with just one full-length flex groove running across the forefoot to enhance flexibility and stability. The rest of the flex grooves join together around the big toe to give it sufficient support, especially during toe-off.

Running in 1080 V11 feels pretty lighter than the 1080v10, but it rides like its predecessor. With the Fresh Foam X, the ride has always been easy. In about 75 miles of running, 1080 V11 has continued to demonstrate versatility. It is not as soft as the Clifton 7, Adidas UltraBoost, Bondi 6, or Brooks Glycerin 19 but offers direct competition to these options. Moreover, it is not as bouncy as Asics Novablast, thus not an excellent option for high-tempo long-distance running.

It still rides the way it should, soft with little effort to it. You will rack up longer miles with 1080 V11. You can also use it for recovery runs. I find it a versatile shoe that rides steady and easy.

Manipulating the midsole would have meant changing the structure of the outsole. New Balance had no choice but to leave the outsole unchanged.


New Balance 1080 V11 Upper Component

 1080V11 UPPER1


The upper part of 1080v11 evinces plush and comfort. As expected, the 1080v11 comes with only subtle updates. There was no way New Balance was going to do a complete overhaul of 1080 v10, which is a great shoe that competes directly with the Hoka One One Clifton 7, Hoka One One Bondi 6, Brooks Glycerin 18, and Adidas Ultra Boost. Such an intention would have ruined 1080v11.

New Balance retained the bootie upper construction. Just like in the previous version, it cradles the foot perfectly.

The upper part of 1080v11 is made of a Hypoknit dual-density mesh material, which does not run from heel to toe. Technically, the upper part is made of two materials.

The knit dual-density mesh material takes the front two thirds while the synthetic material used to mold the Ultra heel cup forms the rest of the rear one third. I felt the knit bootie providing my foot with a sock-like fitting.

New Balance did a little bit of enforcement around the edges of the toe box, giving it more structure, shape and sleekness. There had been complaints from runners about experiencing irritation just above the toe box and around the small toe when running in 1080v10. The toe box and lacing area felt shallow in the 1080 v10 version. New Balance took note of the customers’ feedback and did not hesitate to respond accordingly by giving the toe box and area around the vamp a touch of wideness. I could feel a snug fit and roominess. My toe splayed freely, and I felt my wide foot accommodated. 

There were enough spaces exactly where I needed them to be, and I liked the way the stretchy upper hugged my foot. I could feel a secure fit. The 1080v11 fits true to size.

New Balance also added more perforations on the toe box to increase ventilation. I could feel the wind permeating through the midsole, and my foot felt fresh throughout the run.

1080V11 UPPER 2

Another noticeable change is with the New Balance logo. In the previous version, the ‘N’ logo sits between the lacing eyelets and the midsole. In New Balance 1080v11, the ‘N’ logo is used as a midfoot cage, whereby the upper fraction of the ‘N’ logo forms part of the lacing system. The New Balance logo in 1080v11 gives the shoe more structure while enhancing a snug fit. However, the design may have created another problem. I could feel irritation on the midfoot, but it disappeared after few minutes of running.

1080v11 comes with a sufficiently gusseted tongue. Together with the knot bootie, the tongue generates a sock-like fitting. True to the say "little is enough," New Balance gave the collar a thin padding and a smooth inner lining to provide a proper cushioning. The Ortholite sock liner enhances comfort while the Ultra heel counter design wraps around the back of the foot and Achilles to give a cosy and supportive fit.

It is good to appreciate New Balance for making small but very significant changes to the upper layer of 1080 v11. The shoe comes with an improved stretchy and fitting knit upper material and lacing system, making it more comfortable and sleek. The only problem is that the Hypoknit is less forgiving during the first few miles, but it takes time to stretch to accommodate a wide foot.


1080v11 Conclusion 


The overall quality of the shoe is impressive. New Balance retained things that worked and improved on the flaws of the previous version. 1080 v11 is a plush shoe with a perfect and practical design. It rides soft but not as the Clifton 7 or Asics Nimbus 23, and bouncy yet not as a trampoline as Asics NovaBlast. It is a go-to shoe if you are looking to rack up long miles comfortably and quickly. It is worth the price tag considering that it is all in one: Plush, well-cushioned, responsive, and durable. It works best as a daily trainer shoe and can suit a beginner and a pro.


          Written by: Logan Philip, a passionate and experienced athlete with a critical understanding of running techniques and routine. He is also a personal fitness trainer. At 28, Philip has clocked several miles.

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