Tuesday, November 20, 2018

New Balance Fresh Foam Beacon vs Escalante vs Ride 7

New Balance Fresh Foam Beacon after 2 runs
For the last few years, I've run predominately in Skechers and Altra shoes. I like that they are generally lightweight, flexible, and have a wider toebox. My current favorite shoes are the Skechers GoRun Ride 7 and Altra Escalante. Both have been serving me well, but...we runners are always looking for another good shoe. Maybe that best shoe. Perfect shoe?

Enter the New Balance Fresh Foam Beacon. I saw one of my favorite runners on YouTube praising the shoe (Seth James DeMoor here). Then I read and watched a few other reviews. Not a single poor review. Why not give it a chance? Found it on sale at Zappos and made the purchase. I've only done two runs in the Beacon, but I feel I can compare it to the Escalante (v1) and GoRun Ride 7. Here are the basic number comparisons:

Weight (oz)
Mens US 13
Drop (mm)
Toebox Width
NB Beacon
(slightly firm)
Altra Escalante
Skechers Ride 7
10.6 (no insoles)
(better w/o insoles)

Best one thing about each shoe:
  • Beacon is lightweight
  • Escalante has wide toebox
  • Ride 7 has excellent responsive cushioning
Worst one thing about each shoe:
  • Beacon cushioning is a little firm
  • Escalante zero drop bothers me on longer runs
  • Ride 7 has slightly narrow toebox (better without insoles)
Let me repeat, the first thing that stands out with the Beacon is its very light weight (9.2 oz for a men's size 13!). It feels like nothing on my feet. The cushioning, while touted as cushy, seems a bit firmer than either the Escalante or Ride 7. For easy recovery type runs, I prefer the Ride 7 or Escalante. They both have more plush cushioning. All three shoes have a very comfortable knit upper. I imagine the Beacon working well for slightly faster paced runs. For an everyday trainer, I can still see the NB Beacon working just fine. Once I have more runs, with greater variety, I'll post an update on the Beacon. My main worry is the outsole wearing down too quickly. It's mostly exposed midsole foam with a few patches of harder outsole rubber. Will it last 200 miles? 300? 400? I'd be satisfied with 250-300 miles (since the shoe is fairly inexpensive).


Anonymous said...

Just bought the beacon and I put a softer insole in and that made it just as cushioned as the Go run ride 7 and the beacon is a tad more faster/responsive too. You should also try the Nike epic reacts, a bigger drop but a lovely shoe to run in, it seems to propel me forward when I run. The asclante is to lower drop for me
Regards S

Chris Ⓥ said...

Thanks for your thoughts on the Beacon. Like the idea of softer insole. Beacon is very responsive (think the Ride 7 is too), but I'd like it to be just a little softer.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, with the normal sole in the Beacon my legs got quite beat up especially when I ran down hill. I felt the road to much. A softer thicker sole seem to help them quite a bit. I feel the skechers can be a little unstable sometimes. I took out its insole and put a slightly firmer one in and that seem to help too. I seem to run faster in the Nike epic react though. I would like to try the new saucony triumph iso 5 and the new Nike Vomero 14's. Regards, S

Chris Ⓥ said...

I have not worn a Nike or Saucony in YEARS, but the Nike Vomero 14 looks interesting and is getting good initial reviews. I'd try it. I completely take the Skechers Ride 7 insole out and replace it with nothing. Like the extra room and firmer ride.