adidas Harden Vol 8 with Good Performance and Unique Visual

Harden Vol 8 side overlays

adidas basketball shoe has faced challenges in recent years, experiencing a downturn in their on-court performance shoe offerings since 2018. While some shoes were average or above-average, there were also several disappointments.

Then, in the previous year, they introduced the Harden Vol 7. Not only did it boast a visually distinctive design, but it also delivered exceptional performance on the court, earning it a spot among the best of 2023. This release marked a turning point for adidas, showcasing that while performance is crucial, a bold and innovative design approach is what truly elevates a basketball shoe from good to exceptional.

Crafting a shoe as impressive as the Vol 7 comes with the challenge of setting a high standard for future models. However, it's reassuring to note that adidas has consistently met this benchmark.

The AE 1 stands out as fantastic, the Trae 3 delivers solid performance, and even the Dame line, which initially relied on remixing past models, has evolved with the introduction of the Dame 9 showcased during All-Star weekend. Not only do these shoes excel in performance, but they also boast visually distinct and innovative designs, making them stand out in the realm of basketball footwear.

Related: Adidas Harden Vol.8 Arrives Earlier than Anticipated

Now, with the arrival of the Harden Vol 8, anticipation is high as it promises to be a powerhouse on the court while also sporting one of the most unconventional designs we've seen in recent times. Let's delve into the review and uncover what the Harden Vol 8 brings to the table.

Outsole and Traction

Harden Vol 8 sole units

The Harden Vol 8 boasts an unconventional traction pattern etched onto its solid rubber outsole. With three distinct traction patterns, including radial pods in the forefoot, herringbone along the perimeter, and an "H" shaped pattern down the middle. It appears poised to excel indoors, and provides outstanding multi-directional coverage.

In terms of durability, the Harden Vol 8 might have a slight edge over other models for outdoor use. However, this doesn't necessarily make it a top choice for outdoor play. While the rubber compound is solid, it leans towards the softer side, and the traction pattern itself is relatively shallow.

Foam and Cushion

The Harden Vol 8 brings back full-length Boost to the Harden signature line. Boost is renowned for its cushioning properties, but upon initial wear, this setup feels slightly firmer compared to the Vol 7. The full-length Boost unit in this shoe is mostly encased, limiting its ability to compress and expand as you move on the court.

As the shoe breaks in, the cushioning system is expected to become more plush underfoot. However, the extent to which it will achieve this remains to be seen. A significant factor will be whether adidas incorporated any room within the shoe between the midsole and the substantial EVA side panels on either side. If so, and if the Boost material "warms up" after some time on the court, these shoes could potentially become one of the most comfortable performance models of the year.

Constructions and Materials

Harden Vol 8

The Vol 8 incorporates a variety of synthetic materials along with premium leather accents. The prominent white side panels, featured in this colorway, are made of EVA foam. This material provides both durability for structural support and flexibility to allow natural foot movement. Beneath the EVA foam, the shoe retains the same textile booty design found in the Vol 7.

This design significantly reduces the shoe's weight and aids in ventilation. Additionally, it features a robust external TPU heel counter for added stability. There's a premium leather panel over the toe box. Incorporating high-quality materials alongside modern synthetics and textiles, without compromising performance, earns the shoe extra points.

Safety and Support

Excellent support is undoubtedly a standout feature of this shoe. With a wide and stable base, a low-profile yet steady cushioning system, a robust upper construction with a torsional shank plate, and a sturdy heel counter, the Harden Vol 8 offers excellent support. Essentially, it retains the same setup as the Vol 7, which provided exceptional containment and support, now presented in a refreshed design.

If you found the on-court experience of the Harden Vol 7 enjoyable, you're likely to feel the same about the Vol 8. And for those who missed out on the Vol 7, the Vol 8 promises to deliver a fantastic, agile, low-profile, and secure feel on the court.

Harden Vol 8 upper

Size and Fit

Fit remains nearly identical to that of the Vol 7. If anything, the Vol 8 might feel slightly snugger, but it still fits true to size. Stick with your regular size, and you should have a comfortable fit.

Summary and Conclusion

Adidas has crafted a highly commendable successor to their standout basketball shoe of recent years. When it comes to performance, the Harden Vol 8 is poised to match the effectiveness of its predecessor on the court, positioning it as a top contender for the title of best basketball shoe of the year.

In both design and construction, the Harden Vol 8 remains faithful to the aesthetic of its predecessor, the Harden Vol 7, while enhancing and polishing various elements. Undoubtedly, it boasts a distinctive appearance, albeit somewhat unconventional for a basketball shoe. Yet, therein lies its allure. Truly remarkable basketball footwear not only excels in performance but also possesses a unique visual identity, and the Harden Vol 8 effortlessly achieves this balance.

Buyer Reviews

Harden Vol 8 toebox

Jeremiahmoore: Great, I recommend for hoopers and 3ssb circuit. Love this shoe, definitely better than the harden 7 and I see this shoe being on the top list for hooping & style!

Eon2: Best purchases. Nice wear, very comfortable, very jice design, worth the money!

dababy: Good traction and has good stability. value for money.

  • Product: adidas Harden Vol 8
  • Price: $160
  • Styles & Colors:
    • IE2695: Cloud White / Core Black / Better Scarlet
    • IE2694: Hazy Copper / Core Black / Lucid Lemon
  • Usage:
    • basketball shoes
  • Other Features:
    • True to size
    • Textile upper
    • BOOST midsole
    • Lightstrike cushioning
    • Solid rubber outsole