One of my favorite basketball shoes of 2017 is the Dame 4. It took the attributes that worked really well from the Dame 2 and 3 and carried them over to the 4 while reducing the bulk. It shows the lines refinement and fluid transition from one model to the next. Evolution, baby. Evolution!
As mentioned in the Dame 4 performance review, the Bounce midsole felt lower than any of the previous iterations — which you can see here. You still ride inside of the midsole, but the bulk has been trimmed down. So, you receive support and containment from the midsole in key areas rather than the entire thing. That’s what made the midsole of the Dame 3 look so chunky; practically the entire top line rode above your foot wheres in the Dame 4 it’s much more precise.
Cheap insole — standard adidas practice nowadays. If you ask those that have been wearing adidas models for the past 10 years what aspect the shoes have declined in it would be the insole. Yes, you can swap the insole out for your own — which is recommended to maximize comfort and fit — but the Three Stripes used to provide thick PU insoles that were heavenly.
I can only imagine the comfort Bounce would offer coupled with those old PU insoles. Maybe we’ll get an insole upgrade from adidas eventually. For the time being, the standard insole wasn’t horrible, but it’s cheap and sticks out as the glaring overlooked item in an otherwise perfect package.
Strobel board, standard in all footwear. Some shoes add an additional foam layer for extra comfort, something the Dame 4 could have used with the slimmed down and firmed up Bounce. Not a deal breaker by any means, just something to note.
The torsional plate is interesting. I just reviewed a runner from Asics that featured a beefed up version of this. If you missed that video you can catch it here. I had wondered how something like what Asics offered would feel on-court, and while this is a much smaller version, it’s still fairly similar and offered ample torsional support.
The forefoot is very thin. Bounce offered just enough cushion to make this a well balanced ride between court feel and protection.
Meanwhile, the heel rides a bit higher. You can feel more of the bounce that Bounce offers here mostly due to its thickness and the holes placed throughout. These holes allow your weight and pressure to force the compression of the midsole more than it would without them. While you “squish” the foam down it’ll expand into the cored out sections and then bounce back. (This is what Nike should have done with React. It would have made that cushion setup much more forgiving.)
This is a great shot of the Dame 3 and Dame 4 side by side. You can see the top layer of Bounce foam in the Dame 3 (above) that sits inside of the EVA midsole carrier. This makes me wonder if the Dame 4 midsole is completely Bounce or if Bounce was removed altogether — which I doubt — but it’s never out of the realm of possibilities. I think if adidas was caught removing tech from any of the lineup it has right now it could kill the momentum so, again, I doubt that’s what it did. It’s more likely that adidas firmed Bounce up and made it the entire midsole — which is how the shoe felt while playing in them.
Here are the layers of the upper. This is a cool image that shows you each component within the upper. The main structure is the exterior layer while the middle lining and third layer of padding protect your foot from the more structured material.
This view allows you to see what your foot sees. If it had eyes, of course.
In between the structured outer layer and padded interior are the lace cables, much like Nike’s Flywire — except these cables were much stronger.
I had wondered if the heel tab was connected to one of the lace cables when I first grabbed the Dame 4 but I couldn’t tighten any of the laces tight enough to move the pull tab. It’s nice to see that they are in fact connected. I just couldn’t notice a difference once on-foot.
This is the outsole. Nothing to see here, other than it looks really cool with all those teeth at the heel. It’s very thin as well so wearing for outdoor hooping is something that you’ll do at your own risk while knowing it won’t be the most durable.
That takes care of the breakdown on the adidas Dame 4 deconstruction. Another great job by the folks over at FastPass and it’s always awesome to learn everything you can about what your money buys you at newjordans2018.com