Nothing like a good pair of cycling shoes to make you feel fast, and a bad pair to feel like you may as well be wearing sneakers. I had a pair of Specialized Expert Carbon for many years - I loved those shoes. When I first started looking for new shoes I wanted something that would have an equally stiff sole, preferably all white, and with the Boa closure system (or something similar). The Fizik R3 Uomo Boa ticked all those boxes.
The other pair of shoes I was looking at was the Giro Empire ACC White/Black. But the speed I know I can put the Fiziks on because of the Boa, and the easy on-road adjustments, made me go with the R3s.
SPECS: 230g / UD Carbon Fiber Sole / Microtex Upper / $299.95
IN THE BOX: Nice presentation; while I appreciate that, I also feel like I'm having to pay extra for it ..... and being pretty thrifty, I'd rather just get the shoes.
OUT OF THE BOX: Nice leather, stiff carbon sole. The carbon is kind of polished on the bottom. These shoes are pretty light, I'd say lighter than my old Specialized. I love the look - kinda classic, super clean, super white. I know they're going to get dirty, but having the first few months of uber crisp is worth it to me.
ON THE FEET: They felt pretty good, nothing overly good or bad. I'm not very particular about fit width-wise, and most shoes fit me pretty OK. In terms of length, I usually wear a 42. The Fi'zi:k 42 was a little big, the 41.5 a little small. There also seemed to be a big jump in size difference between those two. I'm going with the smaller and hoping the leather stretches a bit.
ON THE BIKE: Most important. They performed as well as the old Specialized in terms of stiffness and power transfer. The closure system kept everything feeling snug. With out of the saddle efforts, I felt well connected to the bike, and power felt like it was transferring well through the whole pedal stroke. Despite not having any large vents, they actually stayed pretty cool the entire time.
PROS: They look sooooo sweet. Good stiff soles. Good performance.
CONS: None really. Length isn't perfect for me, but probably is for someone else.
PRICE: $299, which I think is similar to other cycling shoes with this performance spec. I was able to find them at 20% off, which was another reason to pop on them.
RECOMMEND: Yeah, I'd recommend these; but I think shoes are a pretty personal purchase.