Mizuno are a company that have been in the ascendancy for the past couple of years. Following off of the success of the Wave Ignitus, the Japanese brand have continually released some quality boots, specifically the Mizuno Morelia Neo, a boot we rate very highly. We were lucky enough to get our hands on Mizuno’s latest control boot, the Mizuno Supersonic Wave III, to see whether it could potentially create a splash in the control boot market currently dominated by the Nike CTR Maestri and adidas Predator LZ, and most importantly find out if it is a boot worth your money.
Design (3/5) – A design that looks good, but is nothing out of the ordinary.
The release black/yellow colourway that I had the opportunity to test out definitely made for a good looking boot, but ultimately was nothing out of the ordinary. The yellow soleplate, laces and trim definitely made for a boot that stood out on the pitch, but when compared to some of the best looking boots out right now, notably the Puma King SL, and the Morelia Neo, it becomes evident that Mizuno certainly played this one safe. In comparison to previous versions of the Supersonic Wave, the III isn’t much better looking than the II and I. Mizuno haven’t changed up the design much from version to version, and when one considers that the Supersonic Wave is a bit of a no nonsense boot, you can’t blame them.
Comfort (4/5) – A supremely comfortable boot, but there is a definite break in period.
As one can expect with pretty much any kangaroo leather football boot, the Mizuno Supersonic Wave III is supremely comfortable. That being said there is a definite break in period that you have to endure. From the first time I wore the boots it took me about a full training session to properly break them in, as the next time I put them on all the initial discomfort that I had experienced had gone. One peculiar thing about the Supersonic Wave III is that putting them on is a lot more challenging than one would expect. The boot is extremely tight at the area where you put your foot into the boot, and it takes a bit of pushing and pulling till your foot is properly in the boot. It’s a problem that has been constant ever since I’ve received the boot, and hasn’t let up much at all. Despite the fact that it doesn’t really affect the comfort of the boot after the initial challenge of putting it on, it’s still a bit of a blemish on an otherwise comfortable boot.
In terms of sizing, the Supersonic Wave III fit true to size. I wear a size US 9.5 for most everything, and I found that the same size fit me perfectly. You get a very secure fit while wearing the boot, and there is no slippage at the heel, thanks in part to the suede lining on the inside of the boot. The insole also contributes to the overall secure fit. It’s an extremely grippy insole, meaning that your foot doesn’t move about while in the boot, definitely a positive.
Performance (4/5): The boot certainly has some features that will actively help your game.
The biggest selling point of the Supersonic Wave III is arguably the ‘Feather Touch System’. Compared to control elements seen on other boots, like the pass pads and lethal zones, the FTS is definitely a more minimalistic approach, as at first glance the boot doesn’t seem to have any ‘technology’ embedded into it. That being said the FTS most certainly does work and was one of the biggest positives that I took from testing out the Wave III . At the forefoot the leather is pushed up by a foamy material that really helps when you’re trying to control a long ball or fast pass as it effectively absorbs a lot of the power from the pass. Thanks to the slightly off centered lacing, you also have a fairly large zone for shooting and receiving passes. While there is only a zone of rubbery material, called the Prime Touch Point, the huge amount of space you do have does make passing and receiving the ball a joy as you feel like you’re in control of all the passes you do receive and make.
Weighing in at 265 grams, or 9.5 oz the Supersonic Wave III certainly isn’t a ‘light boot’. It’s a fair bit heavier than the LZ, but only a couple of grams more than the CTR Maestri III. That being said, you certainly don’t feel bogged down while wearing the Wave III. If anything the boots feel lighter than they actually are, and the weight certainly didn’t play any factor in my in game performance or overall speed. The Tigerclaw system employed on the soleplate is a major feature of the Wave III, and is meant to improve traction by a lot, however, I really didn’t experience any noteworthy change in my traction while playing, and as such it isn’t something that had a major impact on the overall performance of the boot.
Value (3/5): Not the cheapest boot on the market, but it will last you for a while.
Coming in at around $170 US, while for today’s boot market the Wave III are about average in terms of pricing, you still have to fork out a fair few dollars to get your hands on a pair of these boots. In comparison to its rivals, the Supersonic Waves are cheaper than the Predator LZs, but more expensive than the CTR Maestri IIIs. One thing that the Supersonic Wave III do have in defense of its price is that it is, from what I can tell, an extremely durable boot. I haven’t had any problems with the upper splitting from the soleplate, and the studs are still in great shape after about a month of testing. As such I expect that a boot like the Wave III will last for a pretty long time, and won’t require replacing after say, a season of wear. Considering the upper of the boot is kangaroo leather, one thing that I expect will extend the life of the boot is applying leather cream to it every once in a while. I can’t stress how important leather cream is for anybody who owns a pair of leather boots, as it can really make the upper a whole lot more durable. In terms of extras, well, you don’t get any. The Supersonic Wave IIIs come with a box and nothing else. While I would’ve certainly loved another draw string bag, the omission of any extras isn’t something I can fault Mizuno on, as ultimately you are just paying for the boots themselves.
Total 14/20 or 70%
All in all the Mizuno Supersonic Wave III is a solid boot. It’s comfortable, has a good looking design, and has a piece of technology embedded into the boot that actually works. That being said it seems like Mizuno have played it a bit too safe with the Wave III. It’s lacking the ‘wow’ factor that makes a great boot, great. All my favourite boots that I’ve had the opportunity to review have all had a defining feature that propelled the boot to the level of greatness. With the Mizuno Supersonic Wave III you get a boot that is good, but not great. It’s certainly a viable alternative to the other control boots on the market, as the Feather Touch System most definitely does help with touch and control while on the ball. Furthermore, if you’re looking for a no nonsense boot that will do the trick, then the Wave III are for you. That being said, if you’re in the market for any boot, and not one that falls into the specific category of ‘control’, I personally believe that you’d be able to get a better boot than the Supersonic Wave III for potentially less money.