Friday, October 20, 2017

Xiaomi Huami Amazfit Pace review

19 Sept 2017
The Xiaomi Huami Amazfit Pace, a Sports watch that I have been following very closely and wanted to get hold of it. The first release back in mid 2016 was in Chinese version which is only meant for the China market. In the earlier part of 2017, Xiaomi had fix quite a fair bit of software bugs and finally ready to release the International model (English version).




















That was when it really caught my attention and I decided to purchase it for my personal use and also to review it. At the kind of price point of at least 50% lower that we are looking at, it is definitely a market disruptor versus all the other premium brands that are available in the market in terms of functions and features.




















Amazfit Pace is a GPS-enabled sports smart watch that has a 280 mAh battery, which can work for about 11 days in watch mode, about 5 days in running mode, while GPS and heart rate monitoring mode will get you to about 35 hours. The Corning Gorilla glass screen used is durable and resistant to scratching. The always-on display is easily readable even under bright sunlight. The Amazfit is IP67 and IP68 certified, which means its waterproof, resistant to dust, rain, splashing, and accidental submersion. It's a Run phone-free with onboard music storage, pedometer, sleep tracker, and it also tracks key metrics like pace, cadence, distance, time, heart rate and more. One can choose from activity and sport modes for: Outdoor/Indoor Run, Trail Run, Walk, Outdoor/Indoor Bike, and Elliptical. The Swim mode is not part of the function made available. You can also change and customize the watch face by uploading personal photos, and receive all your calls, texts, emails, and app notifications via the always-on display. All data can be sync with the Amazfit Android interface and it does also works well with the Strava app.




















Personally I have tested the Amazfit thoroughly over the past couple of days especially focussing on the time taken to sync with satellite GPS signals at different locations, accuracy of the distance track on road and in the trails, and most importantly the integrated HRM functions. With the respective tests done, I can safely say there is no issue found in terms of accuracy as I did use other brands of GPS watches to compare during my test. For example during a run, I have a few runners using other brands to act as a comparison for the accuracy test.




















NOTE: I am not paid or sponsored by Xiaomi to write this product review, but actually paying the full amount to purchase the unit for my personal use.


25 Sept 2017
Tested out the Xiaomi Huami Amazfit Pace on Sunday during the 2XU Compression Run 2017. Sync up with the satellite to get a strong GPS signal takes less than 10 seconds. That's probably as good as those premium brands out there. No lost GPS signal throughout the HM route even with many runners along the route. Distance captured was about 20km. As a comparison I checked around with others using different brands and the difference is from a minimum of 200m to a maximum of 500m. For me this looks OK as sometimes when we run, most will run at a different angle especially when climbing steep hills and taking corners. Hence with this, I am happy with what the Amazfit can do and considered​ as a good buy at the price point I am paying.



1 Oct 2017
After testing it over 3 races and numerous training runs, I can finally and safely conclude that the Xiaomi Huami Amazfit Pace was performing up to expectation in terms of GPS signal acquisition, distance accuracy and HR monitoring.

The watch was paired with other premium brands GPS watches to compare on distance accuracy, time taken in getting GPS signal in a race and it's HR monitoring function was constantly tested against an Omron BP / HR device.

And today the final test I did was to compare on distance accuracy during the BHP Orange Run 2017. Here are the readings from other brands as a benchmark and the difference is only about 0.04km to 0.1km amongst all of them. Very accurate for the Amazfit on the distance captured.

Xiaomi Amazfit - 10.76km
Garmin - 10.80km
Polar - 10.78km
Suunto - 10.65km

And from now on time will only tell how durable is the Amazfit on frequent usage. My recommendation is that it's a GPS watch with integrated HRM that one should seriously consider coupled with a good price point.






















9 Oct 2017
Xiaomi Huami Amazfit Pace stress test!!!

Mine went thru an acid test over the weekend. It was pouring cats and dogs when the 2XU SG Ultra Marathon 2017 was flag off. With overcast sky and rain pouring down, it had no problem syncing up with the satellite and got the GPS signal in less than 20 seconds. Touch screen works perfectly fine even during the downpour when the surface of the dial is totally wet. No lost signal throughout the entire race.





















13 Oct 2017
Testing out the Export and Import of Gpx file from the Amazfit Pace.

Works perfectly fine when exporting a route from the watch directly to a gpx file.  The good thing is that you do not need to use any interface to do the conversion.





























Importing a gpx file generated from another watch is also a very simple task.  Just connect the watch to your PC via a USB connection and copy it to the /Gpxdata folder and you can use it immediately.






















17 Oct 2017
A lot of runners asked me what will the power consumption be if they will to turn on the music function during their runs.  How long can the battery last?  I have no answer for it but to actually give it a test to find out.  The ideal condition was no other than testing it during Newton Challenge 30k which I will be assuming the role of a 4hr pacer.

Hence the test was carried out on race day when I turn on the mode for RUN+GPS+HRM+MUSIC.  The watch was fully charged,  showed a 98% power on race.  It was paired with a Bluetooth speaker with max volume turn on.  After finishing the race in 4hrs,  the watch was still functioning + music playing and with a remainder of 13% battery life.  Therefore with the above modes switched on,  it will eat up 85% of the battery life which I think is quite reasonable.  My thoughts is if you paired it with a headset with a lower volume,  you may not need that much battery consumption.




















With all these tests done,   I have come to a conclusion of the completion in testing of the Amazfit Pace.  From features and functions plus coupled with the price point,  I personally think that it's a value for money compare to other premium brands.  The only thing that I can't conclude is the durability of the watch,  and only time will tell based on usage and wear/tear.







Tuesday, December 27, 2016

MIZUNO Wave Sayonara 4 (Men US9.5) - Wear test review



Wear test review of MIZUNO Wave Sayonara 4 (Men US9.5)

The Sayonara 4 represents the top line light weight trainer of the Mizuno stable.  In the past it has been listed as a racer, but since then had been transformed into a hybrid of racer/trainer.  I would say more of the characteristic of a trainer.  The construction of the shoe is ideal for those who are not use to racing flats and use it for a fast race because of its light weight.

The shoe was provided by World Of Sports Malaysia for me to do a wear test review, and the pair I got from them was the Blue/Lime color.  This did not influence the outcome of the wear test review.












The shoe was put into a run-in session of multiple runs consisting of short runs of 5k to 6k, and progressively increased to 10k, 20k and the finale acid test was a 35k run.  In the initial few runs, the sole is a bit hard, and hence I can hear louder noise when my feet hit the tarmac.  As it gradually eased in, the rubber of the sole gets softer and the loud noise during landing actually fades away.  Overall the shoe had clocked about 100km before I wrote this wear test review.

















Outsole
The Sayonara 4 has an outsole with a horseshoe shape of the Mizuno X10 black carbon rubber around the heel.  The X10 had proven to be of soft and high durability material to prolong wear and tear.   As I said the Sayonara 4 had clocked about 100km during my test run and I don’t actually see much wear across the sole from the forefoot area and all the way to the heel area.  Hence in terms of durability, I must say the X10 material handle it pretty well without sacrificing anything on its weight and softness.

The outsole feels firmer compare to other softer shoes of similar class. But sometimes when one is looking for that extra push in a race, that firmness is something that what we are looking for, and for that I really like it.  But if you are not fond of a firmer ride then this could be more of a nuisance rather than an advantage.
















Midsole
If you are not familiar with it, Mizuno’s Wave Technology comes in 3 different designs, each with its own role.  In the Sayonara 4, it uses the Parallel Wave plate combines with “U4ic” foam at midsole to give you a good cushioning and propulsion (the action of pushing forward).  I believed Mizuno use the Parallel Wave plate was because it is considered the most appropriate for neutral runners, the elastic thermal plastic plate was designed to absorb the impact from striking and allocate it evenly throughout the midsole.  The benefit from this is to reduce in energy loss from one stride to another.  Hence this will give you a more responsive strike.

Additionally, the added foam provides a more structured feel at the bottom and gives the runner a better support feeling compare to other shoe of the same class.  This is something I found to be a plus point on longer tempo runs.  The U4ic foam is thickest at the heel and gradually thins out toward the front of the shoe.   This is a great consideration for heel strikers that will wear this shoe off.


Upper
The upper had good breathability that does not retain heat on a hot day.  What Mizuno did was to use an external mesh top (very thin layers) with larger openings.  To me this constructions offer very good breathability without sacrificing durability (won’t get torn easily)
Another area that is worth mentioning was the plastic lined toe box.  It looks like an ordinary design but actually had proven that it actually prevent water from getting into the top of the sock (if you run through a puddle of water or wet lawn)   So happened I ran over a field during the test run after a downpour and surprising the top of my sock did not get wet at all.












One more plus point that I would like to mention in the Sayonara 4 is the lace guide on the tongue.  This will secure the tongue properly when you run.  Ever experienced the shoe tongue had completely moved over to the outside of your ankle?  Elastic laces were used for the Sayonara 4 and it gives you good traction in terms of strength applied while lacing up and securing the fit.

Fit
The Sayonara 4 is true to size (at least for me).  I do not need to go any size up or down.  The first fit give me a good feeling that the fitting is perfectly OK comparing to other US9.5 that I am wearing.  The feel is exactly the same.  The shoe comes in a weight of 9 oz (Men US9) and is consider light for a trainer.  Toebox is not narrow as I normally wear a Medium cut.  Those who have wider feet may need to do a shoe fit and check out if the toebox space is good enough.


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Overall
The Sayonara 4 offered me a comfortable ride, whether it is over a short run and longer LSD.  Although it may not be my first choice for a 10k or 15k run, but definitely will be my top of the list for longer runs of 20k to 35k and beyond.  It offered the right amount of cushioning plus support yet not sacrificing on the weight itself.  A stack height of 28mm (heel) and 18mm (forefoot) giving you a drop of 10mm.  If you are very used to lower drop shoes of 4mm or less, then you will probably avoid this shoe.  But if you are one  that consistently wear trainers with 12mm drop or higher, then the Sayonara 4 is the shoe for you on marathon race day.  Plus with the extra cushioning at the heel and forefoot, it will definitely be of great help when you are building up your distance.  And if you are a heel striker, you must give it a try.

Weight: 9.0oz (Men US9)
Stack Height: 28mm (Heel), 18mm (Forefoot)



Wear and Tear of the outsole after about 100km.



The MIZUNO Wave Sayonara 4 is available at all World Of Sports Malaysia outlet retailing at RM479.00

            


Friday, October 14, 2016

Hoka One One Clifton 3




Announcing the availability of Hoka One One Clifton 3 (Men)

The same Clifton cushioning with a more accommodating fit, the Clifton 3 is the shoe you've been waiting for. Built on a new last, the Clifton 3 utilizes a seamless speedframe upper with a wider forefoot to allow for better toe splay. A full length HIP CMEVA midsole provides a soft cushioned ride sufficient for high mileage training, yet light enough for uptempo runs. Along with an Early Stage Meta-Rocker design, the Clifton 3 maintains a smooth and efficient ride from foot strike to toe off.

PM me if you are looking for one of the lightest max cushioning shoe in town.





















Contact: Choi @ 0193289083 or cchoi_2020@yahoo.com

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Ultimate Direction Jenny collection - Ultra Vesta



Introducing Ultimate Direction Jenny collection - Ultra Vesta

Designed by Women for Women.








UD made it better.
With 7.2 litres of storage space, the updated 2016 UD Ultra Vesta has more fluid capacity (2x 500ml soft flasks included as standard and ability to accept up to a 2.0L bladder), more storage up front, better organization in the rear and it weighs less.


SIZING AT CHEST (WOMEN'S)
XS/S: 23 - 36 in. / 58 - 92 cm
M/L: 26 - 43 in. / 67 - 108 cm


Price: RM599.00
Contact: Choi at 0193289083 or cchoi_2020@yahoo.com




Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Hoka One One Odyssey 2





Introducing Hoka One One Odyssey 2 (Men & Women)


Dubbed the "TWINS" of the Hoka Clifton, the Odyssey 2 offered a firmer ride plus a more durable outsole with harder rubber. Other than that both the Clifton and Odyssey are practically the same. The Odyssey 2 gives a balance of cushioning and more responsiveness (firmer ride) to pickup the pace for the neutral runner who values light weight over stability. The early stage Meta-Rocker geometry encourages a smooth transitions from foot-strike to toe-off, and the seamless upper provides lightweight support. The Odyssey is ideal for any distance of training from speed workouts to marathons.










PM me or Whatsapp 0193289083 for the Introductory Offer (for those interested)





Monday, February 01, 2016

Inov-8 Race Pac 8



Gear up for your next trail adventure with the Inov-8 Race Pac 8. This pack includes a 2L bladder to keep you hydrated as you move along the trails, and multiple pockets for ample storage during your trek. Constructed from Nylon Ripstop and 3D Airmesh, this pack is durable and comfortable. Multiple adjustment points allow you to customize the fit and position of the pack.


 



























































Vest Details

  • Includes 2L Hydration bladder
  • 3D AirMesh back construction for breathablity and comfort
  • Nylon Ripstop construction for durability 
  • Adjustable chest strap for a customer fit
  • Chest strap position can be moved through a series of snaps running along the shoulder strap
  • Adjustable waist strap to secure pack
  • Adjustable Padded shoulder straps for a secure fit
  • Large rear pocket with two internal pockets and bladder compartment ample storage 
  • Large rear pocket comfortably fits a 2L bladder (Included)
  • Small back pocket with internal zipper pocket for storage of smaller essentials
  • Mesh stash pocket on lower left perfect for gels or other small running essentials.
  • Safety whistle attached at front chest
  • Reflective details throughout for increased visibility in low-light settings
  • Weight: 12.0 oz (340g) 
  • Pack Volume: 8L (488 inches³)

Fabric 

  • Nylon Ripstop/Polyester/Spandex

Price: RM330.00
Contact:  Choi at 0193289083 or cchoi_2020@yahoo.com




Tuesday, December 29, 2015

ALTRA Provision 2.0



If you are looking for a Zero-Drop shoe with a wide toe box and gives you that natural motion while still stabilize the foot and reduce the rate of over-pronation, the ALTRA Provision 2.0 will be the answer.

Men


  











Women














StabiliPod Technology

















Support and natural running combine in the Altra Provision 2.0. Using innovative StabiliPod technology, this zero-drop shoe features a firmer foam pod on the lateral heel and on each side of the forefoot to stabilize the foot and reduce the rate of overpronation. The Provision 2.0 also utilizes a stability wedge on the medial midsole to offset overpronation, and a quick drying air mesh for exceptional breathability and comfort.


MIDSOLE
Ultralight EVA midsole foam for lightweight, durable cushioning.
A-Bound is a recycled, environmentally friendly midsole compound for resilient underfoot protection.
StabiliPod provides support through the three natural stability zones of the foot.
Built-in Varus Stability Wedge offers support for overpronation without pushing up the arch like traditional stability devices.

Natural Ride System (NRS) design includes a more natural, foot-shaped last, zero millimeter heel to toe drop, and metatarsal-specific shapes in the outsole to assist in proper foot mechanics and allow for more natural foot movement.
Natural Foot Design follows the natural shape of the foot for ultimate comfort.

OUTSOLE
FootPod Outsole follows the natural construction of the human foot for maximum flexibility and a responsive ride.

UPPER
Quick Dry Air Mesh wicks water away from your foot while remaining light and breathable.
Heel Claw construction uses a snug fit around the heel for added support.
A-Wrap design holds feet securely around the midfoot and allows for a roomy toe-box.
Support Insoles are 5mm-thick removable insoles designed for runners needing more traditional support and a molded arch.
Strobel Last with the upper stitched to full length fabric for a comfortable underfoot feel.

STACK HEIGHT UPPER
23mm (Heel), 23mm (Forefoot)


Price: Call or email for promotion price.
Contact: Choi at 0193289083 or cchoi_2020@yahoo.com