Under Armour Micro G® Supersonic

The Under Armour Micro G® Supersonic

Introduction

When a company enters a new market, the uncertainty and lack of commitment often leads to a failed effort.  For Under Armour, the reputation has been well established in the athletic equipment and apparel market as a whole, and their entry into the basketball shoe industry came with some questions.  After a successful introduction campaign, the company is continuing their aggressive strategy this season, with more models, and added talent to their roster.  Earlier this month, we evaluated our first Under Armour performer of the season in the Micro G® Clutch.  Next in line is the subject of this performance review – the Micro G® Supersonic.

Adding to the Under Armour line up this season, the Micro G™ Supersonic features a similar style to last seasons Black Ice.  The features include the following:

  • Synthetic upper featuring HeatGear® technology, with patent leather accents
  • Under Armour patented Micro G® cushioning system (midsole foam and sockliner)
  • One piece rubber outsole, with circular pattern
  • Asymmetrical collar
  • Midfoot TPU shank plate

Aesthetics and Styling

For those who have followed Under Armour basketball, the Supersonic bears an uncanny resemblance to the Brandon Jennings signature Black Ice.  Perforations on the upper, a patent leather toe box, and an asymmetrical collar are the main style features which are carried over.  Adding new technology to the shoe, is the HeatGear® material (which can be assume to function similar to the Adidas ClimaCool and Nike DriFit) for ventilation, breathability, and overall moisture management.  As we have come to expect from Under Armour, style is very straightforward, with few flashy aspects.  One main aspect to be noted about the Supersonic, and with all previous offerings from the company so far, is exceptional construction and quality out of the box.  Although not directly related to aesthetics and style, the materials used are of the highest standards.

Under Armour Micro G® Supersonic

Asymmetry at the collar is the main aesthetic feature of the Supersonic

Sleek and sweeping lines characterize the Supersonic look, with a dramatic asymmetrical collar standing out.  With this, the overall layout is more simplistic, which is evident with the outsole.  The one piece outsole is done in a contoured shape, with a lone deep flex groove cut horizontally high at the forefoot.   A circular crater pattern is molded into the rubber for traction, bucking the trend of the standard herringbone groove patterns that dominates the market.  The outsole is bordered by a large grey rubber portion, which is stitched on at the toe cap and forms a very small outrigger on the lateral.  Branding comes in the form of a large grey “UA” logo at the forefoot.  Adding support and comfort is the white Micro G™ midsole.  Starting at the forefoot and extending around, the midsole is marked again with a circular pattern, with the “Micro G” logo printed on the heel, and the “UNDER ARMOUR” text molded on the medial.  A large shank plate runs from forefoot to heel on the lateral to complete the lower half.

Up top, the patent leather toe box is double stitched from forefoot to forefoot.  Close inspection reveals an animal type texture under the shiny layer.  The toe cap follows the asymmetry of the collar, as the stitching flares out wide to the lateral.  For the sides, the multi-layered material begins with a matte finished overlay.  This overlay makes up the eyestay, running the length of the lower half, and providing a large support beam throughout the lateral collar.  With a large Under Armour logo stamped on the side, the lateral is made up simply with a large perforated nubuck section.  Similarly, the medial side is also made with a single large section, albeit split by a beam of the overlay, with small circular plastic pieces pasted on the “heatgear” material.

At the rear, the dramatic asymmetry of the shoe is evident.  The opening appears as an oval shape, with the lateral side left open.  A true heel counter is not present, as the support is made up of the matte finished overlay, perforated nubuck, as well as the patent leather from the medial collar.  On the latter side, sits a grey Under Armour logo as the patent later rise up the high collar.  Inside, the collar is lined with the textured “heatgear,” which is branded on the high medial side.  Padding is light, but has a soft feel.

Fitted with premium flat laces, the lacing system of the Supersonic begins at the angled throat line.  The 8 eyelets are simply punctured through the smooth overlay, with the difference observed on the medial side, where the last two eyelets are on the patent leather collar.  Underneath the laces sits an all mesh tongue, with large elastic portions connecting the thin mesh on the inside.  A lace holder and small patent leather patch, with the Under Armour logo, complete the tongue which has the heatgear lining on the back side.  And finally, a thick Micro G™ insole sits on the foot be for added comfort.

Comfort and Fit

Getting through the asymmetrical collar is the task to start, and once the shoe is strapped in, the fit is true to size.  Initially, the imbalance of the collar height may seem awkward, as the difference is very noticeable.  Also prominent is the tight construction of the shoe, which has a comfortable fit.  There are no real areas of hard pressure, but the patent leather portions (at the toe cap and around the collar) do provide a rigid feel.  On the sides, the upper holds tight without pushing too hard down on the foot.  Up top, the heels are locked down with little problems and ankle support comes, as expected, from the medial side collar.  On the lateral side, however, the ankles are left somewhat exposed, but support is sufficient.  For cushioning,  the Micro G® technology brings comfort through the length of the foot, as the thick insole provides a memory foam like bed.  With all the cushioning, the shoe does sit a bit on the high side.  Overall, the Micro G® Supersonic has a tight construction with a comfortable fit.

Under Armour Micro G® Supersonic

Micro G® technology is the foundation of comfort and support down below

Performance

Out of the box, the Supersonic has a bit of stiffness all around, which is a contrast to the soft cushioning bed.  Working the shoe in, running has a comfortable and gliding feel, as the Micro G® workings below give each step a nice cushion.  The forefoot to toe area, with the patent leather toe cap, is very rigid and flexes functionally.  Weight of the shoe is average all around, with the sides acting as the lightest areas.  Lateral transitions have some fluidness, mainly aided by the lower cut, which provides added freedom of movement.  Naturally, any shoe with a asymmetrical collar would lean towards a player who plays face up.  However, there are some problems with the dramatic cut of the  collar.  When playing at a fast pace, and making abrupt changes in direction at high speeds, there is some shifting and movement in the ankle area.  The medial side of the collar does not entirely sit flush on the ankles, as the little movement can cause some jaggedness in performance.  It is for this reason that the shoe may not be recommended for big men who rely on quick, subtle movements.  Moving on, one very positive aspect of the shoe is in the cushioning set up.  Players who like a bouncy feel and play on their toes are well equipped, as the shoe plays very fast for quick first steps, pull up jumpers, as well as forward drives to the hole.  And naturally, the Micro G® cushioning provides some of the most comfortable landings for any basketball shoe.  In summary, performance of the shoe seems fit for an active offensive player that benefits from great cushioning.

Exhibiting a few problems, the Supersonic is satisfactory in the stability department.  As mentioned earlier, the main issue with court performance, as well as stability, is the lack of solid ankle support and protection.  Positive aspects begin with the side support.  On each side, the upper does an excellent job of placing and holding the foot down on the footbed.  This helps with responsiveness, as without this support, the cushioning would provide a somewhat mushy feel.  Next, the rigid areas of the shoe – the patent leather toe cap, forefoot outrigger, and lateral shank plate – do a great job in preventing foot roll.  For defensive mind players who need to move laterally, this is one of the brightest areas of the shoe.  Couple this with the fact that the cut is lower, and the freedom of movement, with support, is welcomed.

The uncommon crater patterned outsole does an excellent job of providing functional traction.  Playing hard and aggressive, traction holds up well as the rubber sole pick up little dust.  Furthermore, the outsole works well with the Micro G® cushioning, providing comfortable stick on the court.  Also outstanding in performance is the HeatGear® material.  Placed around the upper and for the inside lining, the HeatGear® technology, with a thin mesh tongue, does the job is keeping everything cool.  There are little problems with sweat or heat, even though air flowing through the shoes is not something that is felt.

Conclusion

What may become one of the top Under Armour models in this years catalog, the Supersonic, with the sleek asymmetrical package, fits the bill for the most popular playing styles today.  Although there may be some problems with the performance of the shoe on a whole, the construction quality, as well as the design, are very positive aspects which can not be overlooked.    In the end, the Supersonic is a fast playing and comfortable shoe, with the Micro G® technology standing as one of the most comfortable technologies in a shoe.  Later this season,  Under Armour will bring their catalog standouts in the highly anticipated signature model for the face of Under Armour basketball – Brandon Jennings – the Bloodline, as well as the Juke, which we might be seen on rookie Kemba Walker.  In any case the Under Armour Micro G® Supersonic was released this month and is available now at the Official Under Armour Online Store.

This shoe is comparable to:

Under Armour Micro G™ Clutch
Under Armour Micro G™ Fly
Under Armour Micro G™ Black Ice