Welcome in the Concave Volt+ TECHSTITCH, the first Concave boot to feature a knit style material through the upper. In order to create something different that falls in line with Concave’s marketing strategy, the knit actually interlocks throughout the upper’s inner lining to maintain structure and minimize weight. So, rest assured that there is no compromise to the core values of the brand. It is a bold new design that is definitely worth exploring.
Every time we find ourselves discussing a Concave release, the debate of “cutting edge” vs “too gimmicky” comes into play. So, what can you expect from this latest release and exactly which category do they fit into?
In order to get a true understanding of the Volt+, it is important to break it down into each individual piece. In other words, take a look at what is on offer with and without Concave’s famous PowerStrike Technology. All too often players get bogged down in what roll the front plate has without actually looking at the general performance of the boot itself. It is a very important piece, but taking a deeper look gives you a little more understanding and respect for what Concave is building.
First question that needs to be answered……
What exactly is TECHSTITCH?
It is basically a knit style material that interlocks throughout the upper’s inner lining to maintain structure and minimize weight. Important to note here is that it is not like a Nike FlyKnit type material. Instead, the upper has a more rigid feel about it, not like a flex-stretch you’d find in other knit uppers. The best way I can describe it is Concave placed the knit on a mold and melted a synthetic around it. So, they TECHSTITCH provides the strength while the outer layer adds as the support. Through the heel area it looks like the material is perforated, but it isn’t. The top layer is transparent, so you don’t see it run through the layers of stitching very well. This is important for players that play in wet conditions, knowing that the material is not intended to let moisture through.
In terms of feel, the entire upper has a medium style firmness to it. You don’t get a real natural feel on the ball, but you are getting what is a very, very durable boot. Over the past few years the trend from top brands has been to produce lighter boots with less material that, in reality, really don’t last very long. Concave has taken a very different approach, one that puts them in their own unique bracket. Their focus with this release was to reduce the overall weight of the boot without negatively impacting the intended design of the silo. If their intent was to make a lightweight contender, they easily could have. There are many ways in which you could trim weight off a boot like the Volt+. But that would be going against their values and the true core of what is a true shooting boot. With so little options currently available on the market, it gives the Volt+ a true purpose.
As you move toward the front of the boot and the key areas that you will use for tough and control, the level of texture stays in play. This provides some extra grip on the ball and is a defining feature of this Volt+ release. Rather than being a tacky material like what was found on prior versions of the Volt+, this type of texturing helps the upper material mold a little easier, giving you a little more flexibility as you connect and move with the ball at your feet. Again, the material is slightly thicker than other boots on the market, so you lose some of that natural touch and feel that you might be familiar with.
What is PowerStrike Technology?
This is a part that has evolved over time to its current design. In terms of actual intent, it definitely serves its purpose. The large concave rubber panel provides some additional power as you strike shots, pending you use the area to its full extent. It is a part of the boot that you either love or hate, and if you are considering Concave boots it obviously has a huge part to play. From my personal experience, you have to adapt to how it feels when controlling and shooting the ball, often resulting in unexpected rebound off the surface. Then you also have to factor in a modified weight distribution that produces a different fell on foot. So, you spend a lot of time adjusting to the new style.
Does it enhance power? It definitely offers some additional rebound while reducing the feel/impact as you strike the ball. For players in need of some added protection across the forefoot, that is a definite positive and something that is worth factoring in.
How do they Fit?
Large! The trend with Concave boots continues. In this particular boot, I wore an 8.5US when I’d normally wear a 9US. Going down an additional half size was definitely an option, but overall I feel like the 8.5US offered a suitable, comfortable fit in game. If you are considering a pair, I’d definitely recommend considering going a half-size down to get a more snug and natural fit.
In terms of width, they are pretty spacious so they are an option for wider fitting players. This is a boot that offers the option of opening up the laces to increase the width through the midfoot. But, note that the laces run through the large rubber Power element, resulting in additional time needed to get the fit just right. When you receive a new pair, take the time to readjust the lacing rather than wasting time when you arrive at training or practice.
Retail and Availability
If you are looking to pick up a pair, Concave have finally made their boots more readily available in the US, you can find them via the official Concave website or at soccer.com. Each pair retails with an original price of $160, while there are several colorways currently available on sale. Presentation of the boots is pretty top quality also. Concave use a pretty slick black box that is definitely higher quality than your standard issue release, and each top-tier pair comes with a matching boot bag.
Would I Buy A Pair?
Concave continue to evolve, and there is definitely room on the market for what they have on offer. Is that on my foot? Probably not. But, as a standard issue boot, they have a lot going for them including durability and added protection through the forefoot. Plus, they are one of the only remaining power focused silos left on the market. At At 9.25oz, this is not a boot that falls naturally into the speed category, even if that is how Concave Markets them. Even so, if one of those falls in line with what you need or are looking for, then definitely put them up for consideration. And please-please-please remember to order a half size down to get the fit right!
What You Need To Know
- TechStitch is a combo of a knit material built into a synthetic upper.
- They are not as pliable as other knit boots on the market.
- Volt+ is still advertised as being a “speed” silo, but they weigh in at 9.25oz.
- Making the most of PowerStrike Technology is all down to the individual player.
- Plenty of texture and definition through the forefoot for enhanced touch on the ball.
- A very durable boot, definitely designed to last a season!
- Retails for $199.99.
Check out the latest Concave Volt+ line-up at soccer.com.