I got to try the new C8 boot today. Just like I compared the lower cut C6 to the lower cut C4 I am comparing the higher cut C8 to the higher cut R4. I went back and forth between the R4 and C8 around 20 times. I figured out quickly, just like the R4, we will again need to use the Powerslide ankle stabilizer to pull the heel back into the heel pocket. (review continued below).
Again the size 10 C8 fit my 10 5/8 inch foot just like the size 10 in the R4 I've had for the last year. In the C4 and C6 the 10 was to big so I had to grind the toe out of a size 9 in both, once ground they were perfect. The first thing I noticed skating in the new C8 was it seemed to fit tighter. It felt more efficient then the old R4. The C8 also felt lighter then the old R4.
Double push worked good, crossovers worked good and high speed was no problem. Going back and forth between the two the C8 was starting to feel more like a high cut speed boot and the R4 was feeling like a low cut recreational boot. I think it had to do with the C8 being more form fitting causing efficiency and feeling noticeably lighter.
When I got back to the shop and weighed the two boots sure enough the C8 was 3 ozs lighter then the R4. The one thing that came up again like it did last year with the new R4 was how stiff the upper back of the cuff is. I like to force my foot forward, reaching forward for the next stroke and that is hard to do in this boot.
I complained about it in last years review of the R4 but looking at the same R4 I reviewed last year, this year the cuff had loosened up to allow me to force my foot forward. If you get the C8, give it time for the upper cuff to loosen up. It may put pressure on the upper back of the leg but each day it will get better. Don't over do it in the beginning.
Powerslide is offering the C8 with 4x90 and 4x100 frames and may be one of the few boots on the speed market that will work for newer skaters and 90 & 100 frames. Overall I am very happy with the new C8. It's 3 oz lighter then the old R4 and now with the new C8 fitting tighter causing efficiency it feels like a high cut speed boot instead of the R4 feeling low cut rec boot. Give one a try, I don't think you'll be disappointed.