No doubt the New Balance Fresh Foam 880 v10 takes an important step with the adoption of the Fresh Foam X compound in the midsole and although it is still in the shadow of the premium Fresh Foam 1080 v10, the leap in quality, both in materials and design, of this tenth edition will make it gain prominence. These changes are also accompanied by a reduction in the weight of the Fresh Foam 880 v10 by almost 10% compared to the previous generation while maintaining the 10 mm of drop, so we can expect a better dynamic performance in a shoe whose spirit has always been a great value for money.
There is an almost complete overhaul over its predecessor the 880 v9 shoe, which already featured a fairly clean upper. This tenth edition sports a stretchy and breathable HypoKnit™ mesh upper with woven midfoot reinforcements for a secure and personalized fit, a solution similar to the one used in the new Fresh Foam Tempo shoe. The stiffness of the outer structure surrounding the lower heel brings extra stability to the whole while the generous cushioning of both the collar around the ankle and the tongue offer the comfort needed to wear the shoe for many miles.
The midsole of the Fresh Foam 880 v10 is the most interesting feature being mostly composed of the aforementioned Fresh Foam X along with a layer of EVA to enhance the performance of the whole. Playing with both the geometry of the hexagons and the laser-made holes, the classic TPU piece embedded at midfoot height (T-BEAM) has been dispensed with, which is undoubtedly a big change in terms of the shoe's conception. The outsole also stars its own small revolution by almost completely abandoning the classic lugged outsole (which still retains its pronator sister 860 v10) for a variety of hexagons in different sizes and proportions but with virtually the same flex grooves for a smooth transition.