New Balance 608v4 Reviewed

9.0 score
[Editors rating (9.0) + Users rating (9.4)] / 2 = (WalkJogRun) score (9.0)/10

Editor rating: 9.0 / 10
User's rating: based on 3 user ratings
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New Balance 608v4 Reviewed Review Facts

What defines a training shoe? A training shoe is designed to be a slightly heavier shoe to help build muscle. New Balance shoes have long been associated with being high quality, with the latest science and technology to improve a runner’s performance. The 608v4 sprang onto the market as casual training shoes. These are shoes that a person will love wearing all day while running or just walking on a trail with someone we care about. The 608v4 has a unique cushioned midsole and complete with New Balance’s ABSORBZ technology. The leather upper provides the perfect level of durability with a casual look that is perfect for just kicking it. The 608v4 has come from a long line of great shoes and this latest edition celebrates New Balance’s brand as being the everyman’s shoe with the subtle style many of us have grown to love about this great shoe company. The 608v4 is designed to help a runner in everyday running. The shoe is considered a neutral (has a more natural foot roll) and many who have purchased it have enjoyed both the comfort as well as the stylish brown leather look, making it a very rugged shoe for the active person.

Editor's Pros & Cons

Non-Marking Outsole

Leather Upper

ABZORB Heel Technology

Removable Insole


Sizes Run Large


The 608v4 is a training shoe but for what type of sport? Many long-distance runners have turned to the 608v4 as their main training shoe. One of the reasons behind this common choice made by so many is because of a unique technology that has helped New Balance stay ahead of the curve and ahead of the competition. The technology is non-marking technology on the bottom of the outsole. This means that they are completely gym safe as the rubber outsole won’t leave a mark on the gym floor. Many athletes who go to a gym to work out will appreciate not having to change shoes to work out. The 608v4 has a very strong gripping outsole that many reviewers have said it’s the perfect shoe for trail running or serious hiking. This makes sense because the rubber outsole tread has grooves that really dig into the varying terrain a hiker or trail runner can get into. The Outsole is made from a natural rubber which aids in the flexibility and the overall feel of the shoe. Like many who run know, the more flexible the shoe the easier it will be to move in the shoe.


The midsole of 608v4 is where this shoe earns respect. The midsole of a shoe is where the cushioning is of the shoe. Depending on what activity the wearer is going to be doing will determine how much cushioning goes into the midsole. Consider what most people who cross-train are doing in these shoes, like putting lots of miles on hard pavement or muddy trails New Balance designers had the perfect solution to this dilemma. They with DuPont developed the ABZORB technology but what is it? Traditional running shoes are built with EVA or ethylene-vinyl acetate (the fancy term for memory foam) which over time loses its responsiveness and can become useless, ABZORB works completely differently. ABZORB takes the individual cells of the foam and becomes a universal size and shape which is designed to resist compression. The lack of compression helps with keeping the midsole from deteriorating prematurely. The midsole is also complete with a removable insole called a New Balance Comfort cushion. This is important because it allows for a more customizable shoe, one that allows the wearer to decide what goes in. Whether high arches plague a runner or no arches, now the athlete can decide not the shoe company.


The upper of the 608v4 makes it look like it belongs on the trail and not in an urban setting. Rugged like a pair of boots, but agile like running shoe, the 608v4 is the small SUV of shoes. Leather surrounds the wearer’s feet. The leather is cushioned with EVA foam that gives the foot a snug fit. The laces on the 608v4 top off the rugged look with steel eyelets. The 608v4’s leather upper is also very flexible and can help the most serious trail runner tackle any particular terrain back woods or suburban park. The 608v4 is very much the black sheep of the New Balance 608 line, as it doesn’t resemble any of its siblings in the entire line up. Dark brown leather with hiking lace pattern make the 608v4 look completely different from the 608v5. Many reviewers have fallen in love with the unique rugged look as well its rugged ability to take runners farther into the woods and farther down the trail. The leather of the 608v4’s upper is stitched by hand to ensure quality. This also helps with the shoe’s durability, which is one of the many reasons that many are calling the 608v4 one of their favorite shoes.


Trail running or cross-training can be really hard on a runner’s feet and even a runner’s legs. The 608v4 has been celebrated as being a very comfortable shoe for both the trail or even on pavement. The ABZORB technology in the midsole helps cushion the foot when the heel strikes the ground better than traditional EVA does. Being that the insole is removable is a huge plus for this shoe and runners that choose this shoe. Being able to decide what type of comfort is important is such a game-changer. Not only will people with common foot ailments such as plantar fasciitis or metartarsaligia which require special insole, be forced to choose a different shoe. The 608v4 is designed to keep a runner’s foot comfortable at all costs. A runner can appreciate the flexibility of the 608v4 and the fact that it can keep a runner’s foot in a natural gait. Mile after mile, the 608v4 is one of New Balance’s most comfortable. New Balance shoes are known for being slightly wider shoes which really help those with wide feet or those that just like the extra room.


Running can wear a shoe out and cross-training is extremely hard on shoes. The 608v4 is durable and rugged. If properly protected with leather cleaner and conditioner there is no telling how long they will last. The ABZORB heel made with the patented ABZORB material is designed to be durable and feel just as it did from day one. Many athletes want a shoe that will last a long time and hold up to the rigorous conditions that they put them through. New Balance has always been known for longevity and durability. The reviews on the 608v4 talk about being able to put these shoes through a lot of extreme conditions and have them still be in great condition. The injected removable EVA insole is made of durable foams that will hold up to the constant punishment that a trail running will do. From many years ago to today, leather is a material that stands the test of time. The ancient Egyptians revered it for its long-lasting protection from the harsh desert elements. New Balance is constantly changing the script that keeps many of us wondering what they will think of next.


The average foot flexes in three major parts: the toes, the arch, and the heel. The major spots that need to flex when designing perfect cross-training shoes are the midsole, the upper and the heel. The New Balance designers are well aware of the anatomy of a foot and the different movements a typical runner goes through in the course of a workout. The main focus of the movement is being able to flex in the outsole. The outsole of the 608v4 is designed to conform to the foot’s natural shape when running. The upper being made out of supple leather flexes and doesn’t create any pinch points that traditional leather shoes do. The combination of the upper working with the outsole make for a shoe that not only flexes front to back but also flexes side to side in case work out may require it. For the most part, the 608v4 is one of the most stunning cross-training shoes that New Balance has produced, leaving a lot of reviewers surprised at how flexible the shoe actually was. Being a cross-trainer designed to look like a hiking boot, the 608v4 is sure to surprise even the harshest critic.


When many think about the support that a shoe might have, many think about the arch support, but it goes a lot deeper than that. Support is the all-around feel of the shoe gives the wearer. The arch needs support but without proper support in the heel or the upper, the shoe falls short and can be labeled as uncomfortable. The support needed when running is all in the fore foot as well as the heel. Think about when the foot comes down on a hard surface or any surface for that matter. The heel needs to absorb a lot of the heel strike and dissipate it through the shoe to give the heel support. The ABZORB technology does that and compresses with every strike. The person wearing the 608v4 will find the support in the upper as well. The support an upper part of the shoe gives is the fit around the ankle. The ankle length boot style gives support preventing the runner’s ankle from rolling in either direction. This is critical especially as a trail shoe. Terrain changes dramatically and the need for support may change to, but the one thing that a runner or hiker can agree on, that support in any direction helps from injury.


The New Balance 608v4 is as mentioned before, the SUV of the shoe world. An SUV may do most of its traveling through the city streets, but it has the ability to go off-roading and see the great sights out in the wilderness. The 608v4’s no mark rubber sole is the perfect shoe for the gym. Many gyms require a shoe that will prevent scuff marks from developing on the gym floor and the 608v4 does just that. The 608v4 is also perfect for out on the pavement having a great deal of cushioning within the midsole as well as the ABZORB heel. The gripping out sole is also perfect for muddy trails. One reviewer said that the New Balance 608v4 is so versatile that they took it running and hiking all in the same weekend. The terrain that the 608v4 is perfect for is any the runner or the hiker put their little minds to. The New Balance 608v4 is the perfect shoe for in the gym playing hoops or out on the trail hiking to get away from the noise and the hustle and bustle of the city.

Bottom Line

New Balance is a company that produces high-quality running shoes for an affordable price, and the 608v4 fits the bill. New Balance is one of the most stable and predictable shoe companies in the world but no one predicted this shoe. New Balance threw a lot of runners for a loop going away from their more traditional shoe safe looking shoe to the rugged and rough and tumble 608v4. The beautiful leather is very durable and flexible to provide the wearer with a long-lasting shoe that will be comfortable from morning till night.

The cross-training world is full of shoes that are a lot of talks and no action, the 608v4 is subtle, but it gets its message across as being a shoe that is perfect for any situation. The addition to the ABZORB heel technology makes the 608v4 very comfortable and durable. The removable comfort insole is not only comfortable and supportive but also customizable. This is huge as not one person’s feet are the same as the next person’s. New Balance is a company that does quality well, but who would have thought they would also do rugged well too? The fan following that New Balance has are sure to be elated with the 608v4 shoe, the perfect shoe for whatever life has to throw at it.