The Nike Total 90 Laser III is a cleat that is designed with specialized details, tailored towards a specific category of soccer player. Earlier this year we reviewed the T90 Laser III with decent results and were excited to be able to get or hands on a pair of Elites. I know the title reads “review”, but the real purpose of this article is to give you a direct comparison of what to expect from the Elites compared to the Regular T90 Laser III.
For testing, I wore a size 9US in the Challenge Red colorway. I recommend checking out the comprehensive review of the regular T90 Laser III before reading over the head-to-head comparison below.
I actually found the Elites were easier to break in than the Regulars. They felt pretty comfortable from the beginning and I was confident running in them. The only area that I had some concern was with the soleplate. It seemed a little stiff but this was something I expected after testing the Superfly’s, which also have the carbon fiber soleplate. On the Regulars, I encountered some discomfort on my little toe, that seemed to rub against an inside seam. In the Elites this was not as much of an issue as the area feels like it has more padding. One negative, I did suffer some slight discomfort with the Elites along my right instep and ended up wearing some band-aids there. The insert in the boot seems to ridge down from center to the heel, and it didn’t suit my fit. In hindsight a few additional training sessions could have confirmed this without me taking them into a game situation.
This is where the biggest difference lies in design. Nike have chosen a Carbon Fiber insert for the Elite range, helping to reduce the weight of the boot substantially. You can definitely tell there is a huge difference between both boots. I found the Elites to feel more rigid to begin, but over time as the soleplate adjusted to the flexibility needed while running they started to feel a lot more fitting. Nike have also injected the studs into the soleplate to make a cleaner surface area. On the regulars, the stud design is more rounded.
Nike have removed the external heel counter on the Elites to reduce weight. This gives the boot a completely different look but it also gives the regulars an additional safety edge over the Elites. I am surprised by Nike’s decision to remove it as it is definitely an area players need protection, but it seems there was more of an emphasis placed on creating a lightweight boot.
The Elites weight in at 8.2oz, while the Regulars weigh in at around 10.4oz, so there is an evident difference when you wear them.
From the upper to the insole used, both boots use very similar materials throughout (bar the soleplate.) The one major difference I found was that both boots have very different stitching patterns. This is mainly seen around the outer sides of the boot as well as around the heel counter, or no heel counter as it may be for the Elites. I also noticed that the Elites have an additional layer of visible stitching on the insole that attaches the upper to the sole (both boots are also cemented.)
Comfort and Fit
Both offer a great deal of comfort. I found that over time they mold nicely to your feet and are great for striking a clean ball. Ensuring you make the most of the 5 pods that line the strike zone is key, as it absorbs impact and if you catch it cleanly it feels great. In terms of fit, they are definitely very different to the T90 Laser II. The primary difference is that this version has off centered lacing, that angles the shape of the boot slightly inward. The fit is a decent option for someone with a wide fit. I am a little wary to say they are a great option because of the outer region of the upper that could potentially cause some discomfort on your little toe. Finally, I recommend you order them true to size. I wore a size 9, my true size, and they fit extremely well.
One of the determining factors for deciding between the Regular T90 Laser III and the Elites will be price! The Elites are priced around $100 more than the regular version. Are they worth the money? That is for you to decide. Personally, I wouldn’t want to pay an extra $100. But, if you want the “complete package” you will need to fork out a little extra. Nike have put in a lot of work to create a more focused boot that gives you additional power with the bonus of lightweight – something no other boot on the market can currently offer. Ultimately, you need to weigh up the good and bad before making that final decision!
thanks bryan! I have a question, what's the difference between center lacing and offcenter lacing when it comes to performance like shooting and other things? Thanks
bryan are laser iii good for winger/set piece/ free kick takers
I have the green lasers. They are really great and i dont have any problems with them. i cant really tell if they improve accuracy but i find them to be great and comfy boot overall. also i got them with 50% discount:)
lol ali your hella funny hahaha
Most of the pro's (most notably Wayne Rooney) don't wear the Elite version of these boots. I doubt money is a problem for them.
So what does that tell you.
im a former T90 Strike 1 user. off center vs center lacing.. when it comes to shooting and kicking the ball, i can definitely feel a cleaner touch/contact with the ball. maybe your shooting accuracy will improve by abit but dont expect any miracle =)
and i believe the T90 boots in general are quite an all rounder boot.i would have gotten the laser or strike 3 but in my country, prices for nike boots currently (especially the k-leather version) are very high as compared to others and thus i settled for something else 🙂
hey frido, actually what's the difference between the T90 lasers 3 and strikes?
they both have the fins and the pods the green ones are made of the same synthetic leather right?
i can see a difference in the studs but i dont know what is the effect of that and whether you can feel any difference?
the laser 3 vs strike 3? basically the laser 3 has memory foam under the tongue, similar to that of the ctr360 and the strike 3 doesnt. referring to the synthetic version, yeah both the laser 3 and strike 3 has the same teijin upper but for the leather version, the laser 3 uses k- leather while strike 3 uses premium grade leather.
apart from that, the soles/studs are slightly different but no effect in terms of play at all. doubt people can "feel the difference"… the laser 3 just uses something like a dual density TPU studs that perhaps may have better abrasion resistance (kinda unsure on this) =) so yeah, its kinda overpriced in my honest opinion if anybody want to purchase the laser 3.. i would have gladly stick to the strike 3 =)
Thanks for the answer fido:)
Hey just in case your wondering why these wiegh 1 oz more than the wc versions it's because of the stitching and most people will be like " why did they do that?" but if you look closely at the July isssue of soccer.com magazine, ramos and miacons lasers both have stitching on them. That's probably because they didn't have enough protection so enen the pros didn't want to waer them.
would you recommend these to me (winger/froward)? Like i have said before i am looking for an accuracy boot that is light weight.
Hey bryan do you think you could do a comparison of the T90 laser III to the Predator X? I'd be interested to know which is the top power boot since I've only used the pred X.
what about the pods and fins on the laser 3 and strike 3? are they both the same or there is some difference to it? thanks.
Does the T90 work well in wet & muddy conditions? Because the area I'm in rains alot and the pitch is always wet.
If you had a choice, which ball would you choose, the jabulani or t90 tracer
Without a doubt I would choose the T90 Laser
which soccer cleats are coolest or prettiest the red with black t90 laser iii or the black with blue ctr 360?
are t90 good for firm ground are they best for any piticulap position
i am think of getting the elite version of the total 90 laser iii or should i get the nike mercurial vapor vi because i am afraid of the carbon fiber cracking on the bottom of the boot but over all which boot do you prefer
I would not be concerned about the carbon fiber cracking – it is pretty durable so it is not likely to happen. I personally prefer the Vapor VI range – but the T90 Laser is also a great boot!
I have a question, which one is better if I want to chose a boot between predator x and 90 laser 3?
It is very hard to define better, it really depends on what you are looking for in a soccer cleat. Check out the review scores page for more information on how they compare against each other!
Just got these off ebay for $140.
T90 laser elite iii or vapour vi? for a centre-forward(i am definitely more of a power than speed player, but i fancy i could use the extra edge of a light yet powerful speedy boot via carbon fibre!)
another thing, i noticed that the wc edition don't have seams, dyou think that would eliminate the blister on the little toe problem?
I have heard that the synthetic on the regulars is slightly different from the elites. I have the elites, but am thinking about purchasing another pair of boots from the laser series (haven't decided between elites and standards). Have you noticed a difference in the two? If so could you compare them?
hey bryan. There are some t90 laser 3 boots that does not seem to have tpu fins at the part they are suppose to be. An example is the new white/black/orange one. Is nike trying to cut cost?
I wanted to know how sturdy the fins are on the instep because my dad thinks that they would fall of after multiple kicks, shots, etc.
All of the latest T90 Lasers still have the TPU fins. You might be looking at the cheaper versions?
They are sturdy and really should not ever fall off while shooting or passing.
I see some t90 laser 3 sold at some stall and even main nike stalls does not have the 'ridges' on the tpu fin area,so the tpu fins area is bald
are the t90 laser III elites or the tiempo III elites better for the role and needs of a defender?
i would stay away from those pairs – all T90 Laser III have the TPU fins.
It depends on the type of player you are. T90 Lasers offer more protection for defenders who like to tackle and the advanced strike-zone allows you to play more efficient long balls. I see plenty of defenders wearing Tiempos so they are actually also a great option!
Even if u see soccer.com-some if the t90 previews,if u see closely,there is the honeycomb panels but NO TPU FINS.
Hey I really want to know, what is the difference between the T90 Lasers and the T90 Strikes, they both have the TPU fins and the only really noticeable difference is the bottom of the two. I would really appreciate an answer. Thanks
And I think Kenneth is talking about the T90 Shoots.
Is there any other difference between the world cup editions (purple/orange/black) and the new elites (red/black) other than the material on the outside of the shoe? Has anyone tried them?
@mateo-i am talking about the t90 laser 3.
So speaking of elites, soccer.com has put up some old cleats on there, like the very first colorways of the maestris, vapors, and all the world cup editions of the cleats, any idea why?
@Kenneth- i kno but there r cheaper versions of the lasers such as the shoots with no fins and the strikes with fins but a different bottom among other things. I believe tht u r talking about the shoots bcuz I have friend who has T90s with no fins which r called T90 shoots a more affordable version of the lasers without all the technology
@mateo-dont u tink nike is cutting cost?
it’s the shoots your talking about! of course there not as good as the lasers, but there only 60 dollars! You are mistaken
since you have soo many nike soccer + codes.. can you help a brother out? and tell me the code?
just got these off wegotsoccer.com, with all the discounts for 135 with free shipping, I’m expecting much more comfort and fit than my puma pwr C, the pumas cause MASSIVE blisters on my heels hoping for better/lighter cleats
Hey Brian, i am a center forward but I’m thinking of playing center mid next year but I don’t know if I can for my team so would you suggest these or the ctr’s? What are some of the differences in the boots?
dude i just got these for 130 off ebay, except that it was the metallic platinum color. I cant wait till they get here!!!!!
These cleats are crap. Just bought a pair in May and already two of the studs on the right cleat have fallen off. Way overpriced for such a nondurable boot. Don't waste your money, switch to adidas and none of this will happen.
How about the Adizero? The best adidas cleat was the first adizeros. The best cleat after broken in has to be the superflys
Are these boots good for midfielders as well? Specifically I play attacking mid. Thanks in advance.
Yeah definitely, Paul Scholes and Wesley Sneijder both wore them last season!
the t90 elites are amazing! my shooting has became more accurate and even stronger with these cleats and i notice i difference! my last cleats were tiempos and those were my favorite because they were comfortable and light, but my shooting has increased tremendously with the t90s. only problem is my right heel is rubbing in the t90s, so i would suggest either tape on your heel or maybe a bigger size? not sure
just picked up a pair for $100