ASICS Novablast 2 vs Puma Magnify Nitro: which is the best cushioning running shoe?
Fast running shoes are great, but it’s true that everyday sneakers will always be more popular among runners than carbon-enhanced speedsters. The Novablast 2 and Magnify Nitro are two of ASICS and Puma’s latest well-padded sneakers (respectively), and we figured that instead of looking at them separately, wouldn’t it be more fun to compare them to see which ones are the best under daily racing conditions?
But first, a brief presentation of the shoes in question. As you might have guessed from the name, the Asics Novablast 2 is the second iteration of the Asics Novablast, a well-received running trainer from February 2020. The Novavlast 2 offers more all compared to its predecessor, including more foam, weight and stability.
The Puma Magnify Nitro is the latest addition to the all new Puma Nitro collection and was presented later than the rest of the team in August 2021 as part of the Puma Spectra Pack. These running shoes are packed with new running innovations and are meant to “give you more of the good stuff,” as Puma puts it.
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Without further ado, let’s see how these chunky running shoes stack up.
ASICS Novablast 2 vs Puma Magnify Nitro: price and availability
The Asics Novablast 2 is available for purchase now at Asics UK / Asics United States for a suggested retail price of £ 130 / $ 130. It is available in several colors, including the superb white / safety yellow (men) and birch / rave pink (women).
The Puma Magnify Nitro is available for purchase now at Puma France / Puma France. Prices from £ 110 / $ 140. Considering how new these shoes are, it’s no surprise that the color options are limited, but the Puma White-Sunblaze-Green Glare colourway is worth a look.
AUS price to be confirmed.
ASICS Novablast 2 vs Puma Magnify Nitro: technology
It’s not like the original Novablast doesn’t offer enough cushioning underfoot, but the Novablast 2 does offer even more. The FF BLAST foam is soft and responsive and allows you to land smoothly without wasting too much energy.
According to Asics, the indentation found on the back of the foam was inspired by the trampoline and would have allowed additional compression for a more responsive bounce in the toe area. And of course, the Novablast 2 puts a lot of spring in your stride.
But wait, there is more! Asics has also increased the mid-foot width of the shoe. They achieved an asymmetric undercut on the midsole geometry, which works with a new TPU heel stabilizer to create a “more balanced stride and harness the rebound of the shoe.”
The Puma Magnify Nitro features Nitro foam that offers responsiveness paired with comfort in a lightweight package. Nitro foam is incorporated into the ProFoam midsole so the shoes can offer even more bounce.
The shoes might not look super breathable at first, but the upper is not that thick and best of all, the CoolAdapt cooling technology helps you stay cool during your run.
The PumaGrip rubber compound provides traction and extends from the front to the end on the outsole. Even Puma admits that there is a “generous amount” of rubber present in the shoes which adds to the overall durability but also contributes to the weight of the shoes.
ASICS Novablast 2 vs Puma Magnify Nitro: running dynamics
It is an absolute pleasure to run in stand shoes but especially in the Asics Novablast 2.
The Asics Novablast 2 is not a lightweight running shoe; in fact, it is heavier than the original Novablast. However, and interestingly enough, the extra foam makes the Novablast 2 a more stable running shoe.
I would never expect a cushioned running trainer to provide super energy return, but the Novablast 2 did a great job in that regard. The midsole is somewhat flexible, which helps propel you forward.
Although the upper is well perforated and comfortable, the shoes are long and I would recommend reducing by half a size. The rod is soft and expands well, so tightness shouldn’t be an issue.
The Puma Magnify Nitro is an exciting shoe in terms of comfort and ergonomics. It’s well padded, especially the collar and tongue, but the front part of the upper isn’t as forgiving as the Novablast 2. It’s not uncomfortable at all, but it certainly offers a tighter fit.
Speaking of stiffness: the midsole is also less flexible than the Novablast 2. The latter rolls better, although I can see the Magnify Nitro working for people who prefer a last second take-off: the firmness of the sole might help. add a propulsion supplement.
The PumaGrip outsole works great on tarmac, but it would likely benefit the shoes if the amount of rubber was reduced slightly. It would definitely help to reduce the weight slightly. No need to copy the Under Armor FLOW Velociti Wind but maybe just shrink it down a bit, Puma.
ASICS Novablast 2 vs Puma Magnify Nitro: the aesthetic
Cushioned shoes weren’t famous for their amazing looks, but it looks like Asics and Puma are trying to change that. The Asics Novalbast 2 is an eye-catcher with its unique heel pattern and protruding midsole configuration. The Clear Blue / White colourway tested is a nice shade of blue, and the red accent of the outsole complements the overall tone of the shoes well.
No matter how cool the Novablast 2 is, the Puma Magnify Nitro steals the show with its light and vibrant attitude. You can tell Puma knows how to make great sneakers: the Magnify Nitro looks great on the feet no matter what the occasion. Well, maybe don’t wear them with a tuxedo.
ASICS Novablast 2 vs Puma Magnify Nitro: verdict
Strictly from a racing performance standpoint, the Asics Novablast 2 is by far the better choice of the two. He works better and feels more comfortable; Simply put, it offers a better cushioned running shoe experience than the Puma.
That said, the Magnify Nitro is a new franchise from a company that has just started producing road running shoes again. Considering this, the Puma isn’t a terrible option, especially for those who like to wear running shoes other than running.