Facts

Top
Inspired from
Collection
Price
$210
Special editions

Road

Shoes best for road, track and light gravel. See the best road shoes.

Trail

Shoes best for trail, off road, mountains and other unstable surfaces. See the best trail shoes.

Good to know

As long as you stick to the road or path, and if you want just one running shoe, buy a road running shoe.

Neutral / cushion / high arch

Shoes for runners who does not need any additional arch support (Around 50% of runners). Best for people with high or medium high arches. See the best neutral shoes.

Stability / overpronation / normal arch

Shoes for runners who needs arch support (Around 45% of runners). Best for runners with a normal arch. See the best stability shoes.

Motion control / severe overproanation / flat feet

Shoes for runners who needs a lot of arch support. Best for runners with flat feet. See the best motion control shoes.

Good to know

- Rule of thumb: If in doubt, buy neutral shoes to avoid injuries.
- More about arch support in this video.
- Find your arch type by following steps from this video.

Daily running

Cushioned shoes for your daily easy running. Great comfort. See best shoes for daily running.

Competition

Lightweight shoes good for races, interval training, tempo runs and fartlek. Here are the best competition running shoes.

Good to know

If you want just one pair of shoes, buy a shoe for daily running.

The height difference from the heel to the forefoot, also known as heel drop, toe spring, heel to toe spring or simply drop.

There are many opinions about what a good heel drop is. We do not recommend any in particular. Lean more in this video.

Summary

We spent 5.8 hours reading reviews from experts and users. In summary, this is what sneaker fanatics think:

14 reasons to buy

  • The smooth, impressive suede detailing on the low-top New Balance 997 Desert Heat dominates the upper and offers a clean finish.
  • The striking variance of colors on the upper and sole imparts a desirable style.
  • A kind of sneaker that has designs suitable for wide range of clothing.
  • The ankle collar of the black version has a reflective finish which pops at night.
  • The reptile-like skin accent puts a high value on this 997 edition.
  • Buyers are pleased that the upper is well stitched and does not have adhesive residues.
  • The rubber outsole does not wear right away as it is fabricated with a compound that lasts for a long time.
  • The ENCAP cushioning placed in the heel of the low-top 997 Desert Heat absorbs shock, reducing a great deal of stress from that area of the foot up to the leg.
  • A dual-density C-cap foam makes up the midsole which is thicker on the heel as it encases the ENCAP for that fabulous
  • The C-cap foam that lies towards the forefoot grants flexibility which makes walking and running pleasurable.
  • The embroideries on the tongue and heel are accurately and neatly done.
  • The padded interior offers a comfortable, snug fit.
  • A decent choice of sneaker that is built with plush materials and worth its value.
  • Has a striking outsole that offers remarkable traction.

1 reasons not to buy

  • One unsatisfied reviewer was unamused that this shoe is offered in standard width only.

Bottom line

New Balance has developed an exceptional reputation on its own which is evident in the number of well-crafted variations of the 997 heritage classic. One that has an old-school character blended with modern styling is the low-top New Balance 997 Desert Heat. Its cover is constructed with premium decorative features, assembled with high precision, and almost has zero blots, blemishes, and discoloration.

Its decently crafted cover complements with ace proprietary technologies that offer cushioning, comfort, flexibility, and support to the feet. One needs to be prepped as this meticulously refashioned version comes with a high price tag.


Rankings


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4.4 / 5 based on 5 ratings

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Expert Reviews

Experts are running shoe geeks, who post reviews at youtube, directly at RunRepeat or at their own websites. Each expert is categorized from level 1 to level 5 based on expertise. See stats on expert reviews and how we calculate scores here.

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New Balance 997 Desert Heat History

One brand that has remained steadfast in delivering products billed as “Made in the USA” is New Balance. For many decades, this Boston-based brand has been producing sneakers from its five factories based in Maine and Massachusetts, employed with American workers. The company carries on such tradition especially since its chairman and chief executive Jim Davis is very much committed to domestic manufacturing.

When running became a craze in the 1970s to 1980s, several competing shoe brands expanded overseas tapping laborers outside the USA, chiefly from Asia to meet the increasing demand of consumers. New Balance did not go with the trend and banked on local production, putting more value on quality over quantity. As a result, a significant percentage of American customers continued to patronize New Balance products.

One of the famous designs issued by New Balance in 1991 and labeled as “Made in the USA” is the 997. Constructed initially as a running shoe, the New Balance 997 is made with more visible heel counter and higher midsole height versus the earlier models, the New Balance 995 and 996.

The popularity of this 997 version prompted New Balance to manufacture this model concurrently in its UK factory and facilities in the USA. It is for this reason that in the coming years New Balance 997 Made in England are made available in the market. One of the variations of the 997 crafted both in USA and UK is the summer-inspired Desert Heat Pack. This iteration is composed of premium materials sourced from such regions.

Just like the USA versions, the UK-made low-top New Balance Desert Heat sneakers are fashioned with a high level of craftsmanship, which makes much appeal to sneakerheads and sneaker collectors. As such, this model comes with a steep high price tag, which retailed at $210 on its initial drop.

New Balance 997 Desert Heat Style

Several models that belong to the New Balance 990 series are given a splash of summer-inspired colorways, particularly the Desert Heat pack, and this includes the low-top New Balance 997. These men’s casual sneakers exude a classic appeal and available in bright but not flashy upper color combinations as well as summer midnight tones of black and lilac.

The lighter version has a mesh forefoot while the darker one has perforated suede in the same region. The low-top New Balance 997 Desert Heat puts a glow to one’s laid back casual wear whatever time of the day.

Fit & Sizing

The New Balance’s 997 Desert Heat low-top sneakers are true to size and accessible in men’s sizes from 8 to 12 US. This variation of the 997 classic silhouette is designed with the same lace-up closure as the previous models, which offers a personalized, secure fit.

Notable Features

One of the standout characteristics of the low-top New Balance 997 Desert Heat is the fact that this model went through a meticulous process of craftsmanship as it is produced in NB’s USA and UK factories. The brand did not scrimp in sourcing out materials for this 997 edition as its upper is made of premium, velvety suede, breathable mesh, and synthetic textiles. The desirability of this model does not rest on its appearance as it is fabricated with cushioning features, mainly the proprietary ENCAP technology in the midsole, that increases the comfort advantages of this sneaker.

Additional Info

  • The ENCAP feature is a New Balance cushioning technology built into the midsole.
  • The ENCAP is made of a piece of foam compound bounded by a sturdy polyurethane (PU) material. This particular foam is placed in the heel area of specific models like the low-top New Balance 997 Desert Heat designed to absorb impact.
  • New Balance partnered up with lifestyle apparel retailers and fashion designers in producing original color patterns for the low top New Balance 997, namely: J. Crew x New Balance 997, Concepts x New Balance 997, Nonnative x New Balance 997, and Stance x New Balance 997, among others.