Archived Cleat Reviews, Diadora Reviews — August 7, 2012 at 12:21 am

Diadora Maracana RTX 12 Review

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The Diadora Maracana RTX 12 offers exceptional value in a professional level shoe. Kangaroo leather teams up with an anti-stretch lining in the upper for incredible comfort and durability, while Axeler in the outsole and Double Action inserts offer support and cushioning. Partially hidden loop lacing system. Soft ankle collar lining.

Comfort/ Fit

This shoe is unbelievably comfortable and really unmatched in its price range. The kangaroo leather that Diadora has used on this boot, like with all of their top end boots, is some of the best quality leather that you can get on any soccer shoe. It’s very soft and pliable right out of the box, and given the time, will mold beautifully to the exact shape of your foot. The heel is lined with a very soft cotton like mesh, that provides plenty of comfort and does a great job of locking your heel in the boot. This shoe also uses a somewhat unique lacing system, that is ever so slightly off centered and uses only 5 lace holes on each side. Once you pull the laces tight, you can feel how nicely shaped that this boot really is, and how it uses the tight fit of the leather to wrap your foot and secure it in place.

The fit of the boot is definitely on the wider side, so anybody can wear this boot. I have a fairly narrow foot, but had no problems wearing this boot. Sizing is another important thing with this boot. For review, I went down a half size to what I normally wear into a size 8.5US. The reason that I did this is because I knew that the boots would stretch and I still wanted to keep that tight fit after stretching. The sizing goes like this: If you like your boots very tight, get them a half size down and take the time to break them in slowly until they stretch to your perfect size. If you don’t like your shoes extremely tight or you wear double socks on a regular basis, order your normal size. Overall, these shoes really do feel like slippers, and once they are broken in, they are the softest and one of the nicest fitting shoes that I have ever worn.

Weight

This boot weighs in at 9.4oz, which is pretty much one of the lightest on its class, 0.2oz lighter than the Legend IV and 0.4oz lighter than the adipure IV. By no means does this boot feel heavy, but it is in my opinion the perfect weight for the type of boot that it is. Considering the quality of leather that you get with this boot, it’s pretty impressive that this shoe is this light.

Traction

This boot features a very unique outsole and stud pattern that is somewhat unusual, but very effective. The stud pattern is made up of all blades that are all the same shape, an open “V”. This makes for a very good amount of multidirectional traction because you end up having a blade that will grip when pushing off in almost any direction. The studs are not overly long and are a very nice length that makes for a very stable feeling when running. The stud pattern is unique on this boot because it seems to flow with the boot. What I mean by this is that you don’t really feel the studs under your feet. It feels like a running shoe on pavement, very smooth and stable. Part of this may also be due to the Axeler technology that Diadora implements into all of their top end shoes. Basically what it is a metal, I think, rod that zig zags from stud to stud, through the midsole of the boot and finishes of in the heel. As far as it making a noticeable difference from other boots that I have worn, I couldn’t tell it was there, but I can say that it felt unique in comparison to other stud patterns.

Touch

This has to be my favorite part of this shoe. The kangaroo leather is unlike any other that I have used on any of the recent heritage boot releases. The only way that I can really explain the touch is that the boots almost control the ball for you. They provide the most amazing cushioned feeling, but you don’t lose any of the feel of a thinner boot. Its truly amazing and it really shows why, in my opinion, kangaroo leather is still the best upper material for a soccer shoe. Diadora has also added a few modern touches on this boot by using a clear, somewhat tacky coating on the instep of the boot, providing a little bit of grip. There is also a flap over lace cover on this boot, something that almost all of the modern kangaroo leather boots have eliminated. Normally I would complain about the flap lace cover and the strap, but in this case I really like it. It covers the laces only at the top where the knot I and really gives the boot a unique look.

Shooting

I really enjoyed shooting with this boot. It provides, like I said before, a very cushioned feel but still allows you to feel the ball. This little bit of extra cushion seems to aid in controlling your shots. I felt like I could take shots that I feel like I would normally miss, but was instead able to finish them. Something about this boot just seems to add an element of control to all aspects that you can think of in the game of soccer. Other than that, this is still a pretty classically style boot that really offers no beneficial shooting technology.

Durability

This boot is extremely high quality. You can feel the quality in the materials that were used. They appear to be put together very and very classically. You can spot out several little stitch imperfections and some of the rough edges where the leather was cut. Does this take away from the durability? Absolutely not. The little imperfections give the boot a more hand made feel and look less like they came out of a factory. The leather quality is top notch and I don’t question the durability whatsoever. This boot, with proper care, will last for a minimum of one season, and could go on for several more after that.

Protection

Because the leather is so nicely padded, this boot will definitely be one of the more protective boots that you can get if you are worried about getting stepped on. You also get a very large, external plastic heel cup that will certainly protect you should you take a shot the heel area.

The Verdict

I have to say that this is the best kangaroo leather boot that I have worn to date. The leather quality is by far the best from that of the Legends and the adipures, and the fit is truly fantastic. I truly felt like I had a perfect touch with this boot. All of this is great, but this is without even mentioning that this boot only costs $85! For that bargain price, this is a boot that I think everyone should give a try. If you can get past them not being Nike or Adidas, you will find a boot that offers some fantastic quality as well as performance. I would honestly pay $200 for this boot.

Comfort/Fit10 out of 10
Weight8 out of 10
Traction8 out of 10
Touch10 out of 10
Shooting8 out of 10
Protection9 out of 10
Durability8 out of 10
FINAL SCORE61 out of 70 or 87%

11 Comments

  1. Hi Josh, I got maracana rtx12 but they are half size large, am thinking to get half or get the 2013 model.

    The 2013 model conical studs you mentione are not very long, I had nike premier and found that conical studs are bit too short, soleplate are bit too flexible, I feel premier do not have stability and grip as blades studs and stiffer sole plate , for traction reason shall stick to rt12 model ?

    Just out of interest, tiempo 5, diadora maracana rt12, mizuno Morelia, which shoe do you like better overall? Thanks for answer all my questions, and super work on all the reviews!

    • For me, the Legend 5 is the best of the bunch you named. The Morelia is also a great option is you’re looking for something a little more traditional.

  2. Thanks for your review. This is an amazing shoe and one of my favorite. 2 questions for you.

    1-How do you compare the stud pressure and stability of the gx14 stud pattern versus the rtx12? I’ve never tried the gx14 studs but i absolute love the rtx12. The gx14 studs seem really long compared to the rtx12 blades. Is this mostly an optical illusion? Which leads me to my second question….

    2-I found the dd eleven k gx14 for the same price as the maracana rtx12 (both under $90). Which one would you choose especially if you play about 75% of the time on turf fields?

    Thank you.

  3. I’m a goalkeeper and want a leather boot. I’ve been looking at the Nike premier but then saw these. Since they are basically the same price, which ones do you prefer? Also since I’m diving alot I need alot of traction. Which one do you think provides better traction for a dive? Thx

  4. hey josh I wanted to buy a soccer cleats and these diadora cleats got to my interest but I have always got nike or adidas cleats so would going from nike and adidas to diadora be a good change or stick with nike adidas

  5. hey josh I was wondering which cleat is better the nike premier or diadora rtx 12 I am a defender so I need a cleat that’s comfortable good for wide feet good touch and good protection

  6. Hey Josh, I recently got a pair of nike premiers and I absolutely love the touch, fit and feel, thanks to your sizing recommendation, but I was wondering if it would be a smart investment to pick up a pair of these rtx 12 (since the leather quality looks amazing) to be able to take turns between the two? I’m hoping extend the life of both cleats by doing this.

    • These are great shoes, although quite different in comparison to the Premiers.

      • Thanks for the reply! I’m really leaning towards getting a pair of rtx 12s too, Im liking my premiers a lot, but it wouldn’t hurt to get a new style of leather cleats, I like the way they get the laces out of the way and leave a clean striking element with the k leather.

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