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Adidas Adios Pro 2 vs. 3 vs. Prime X vs. Boston 12: Differences and Reviews 2024

Adidas Adios Pro 2 vs. 3 vs. Prime X vs. Boston 12: Differences and Reviews 2024

    Adidas has a long history of excellence within the running world that continues to this day.You’re probably reading this because you want to know which shoes are best for your own running.In this article,I will dive into the exciting world of running shoes to bring you a detailed comparison among these adidas models: the Adidas Adios Pro 2 & 3,adidas Adizero,Adidas Adizero Prime X and  Adidas Boston 12.In the adidas catalog, these running shoes are the protagonists of different chapters,but which one is the best choice for you?What is the difference between Adios Pro 2 and 3?Should I get the Adidas Adios Pro 2 or 3?What is the difference between Adios Pro 3 and Prime X?What is the difference between Adios Pro 3 and Boston 12?What's the difference between Adidas Prime X vs. Boston 12?Difficult decision, yes, but I offer you the specific details with which you can discover which one best suits your needs.


  • Adidas Adizero Adios Pro

The Adios Pro is Adidas' flagship, long-distance racer. It's the shoe used by elite Adidas athletes to race marathons in and it has all of Adidas' premium technologies packed into it.Every year, it gets upgraded with a brand new design.

Adidas Adios Pro 2 Review

Released Year: 2021

Price: $132

Version 2 of the Adios Pro has been updated with a more breathable upper and a chiselled midsole which brings down its weight but it still has a very similar ride to version 1.

Created with insights and data by some of the world's fastest athletes, the adizero Adios Pro 2 features cutting-edge technologies: Carbon-infused ENERGYRODS, visible within the newly sculpted midsole to deliver lightweight stiffness which are designed for a more anatomical driven transition, limiting energy loss. Two-layers of re-sculpted LIGHTSTRIKE PRO midsole to support with energy return. Ultra-lightweight, partially recycled polyester, CELERMESH 2.0 upper, created for speed with flexibility, breathability and support.

It is such a unique carbon fibre racer because it utilises stiff carbon rods in its midsole instead of a rigid carbon plate like other racers.This innovative design approach has paid off for Adidas because the Adios Pro 2 is one of the most lethal weapons in the super shoe war.While it shares a similar form factor (Lightstrike Pro + Energy Rods) as the Adios Pro V1, it’s also a brand-new running shoe from top to bottom. This time, the ‘Energy Rods’ are visible under the midfoot – which wasn’t so with the V1.According to Adidas, these shoes are different in that they use rods rather than plates to mimic the bones in the foot. The rest of the material of the shoe is 50% made from recycled materials so this is a step forwards.


Who should buy the Adidas Adizero Adios Pro 2?

The shoes are designed with faster runners in mind and for distances of 10k upwards.Buy this shoe if you want a top-end race day shoe to squeeze your best effort out of. It’s fast, fairly comfortable, decently priced, and proven to win world records. 

Adidas Adios Pro 2 Pros and Cons

  • Lighter than version 1.

  • Breathable, cool Celermesh upper.

  • Energy-saving rocker.

  • Natural-feeling transitions.

  • Soft, cushioned ride.

  • Long-distance comfort.

  • Quick transitions.

  • Outsole traction.

  • The layers of foam cushioning give you around 80% energy return from each footstrike so there’ll be less shock going through the joints.

  • Unstable at slow speeds.

  • Not a big upgrade over the Adios Pro 1.

  • Modified Continental rubber is less durable.

  • Runs narrow.

  • Low versatility.

  • Poor heel stability.

  • Lacing anomaly affects the midfoot and heel fit.

Adidas Adios Pro 3 Review

Released Year: 2022

Price: $250

The Adizero Adios Pro 3 is the pinnacle of Adizero Racing products. It was built with and for athletes to achieve unbelievable feats. These adidas running shoes are made to optimize running efficiency. The Adios Pro 3 has received a whole slew of updates including a new upper, midsole and outsole.

The biggest difference between the Pro 3 and the previous iterations is that this is a race-day shoe without a full-length carbon plate. Adidas moved away from using the carbon plate in the Pro 3 and focused instead on using the energy rods. Featuring Adidas’ Lightstrike Pro foam cushioning and full-length energy rods (which you can see from the bottom), the Adios Pro 3 is becoming something of an icon – and a go-to shoe for PB chasers come race day.While all the chat on super shoes tends to be focused on the plate (or energy rods in this case), the real MVP with this shoe is the development work put into the foam, the Lightstrike Pro technology. It's a great feeling foam; lively and progressive, with a sense of firmness that give the shoe a feeling of pop, rather than feeling very cushioned. When combined with the rods (which provide stability and propulsion), it's a potent mix.

Moving onto the outsole, the Continental rubber provides one of the best and stickiest grips in the game, ensuring you won’t slip through all those water station stops out on the course, while giving you confidence around the corners.Version 3 has more foam in the forefoot, a wider net base and a more aggressive toe-spring which makes it softer, more stable and more propulsive than the previous version.The mesh upper on the Pro 3 has also been adapted from pervious verions, as has the tongue construction – so it feels pretty different to the Pro 1 and Pro 2. 


Who should buy the Adidas Adizero Adios Pro 3?

The Adidas Adizero Adios Pro 3 stands out as an excellent pick for any race, from a short 5K to the marathon.The shoe is designed for:

designed for:

  • Midfoot or forefoot strikers looking for a reliable racing shoe for their upcoming races, spanning from the 5K to the marathon.

  • Those on the hunt for a top-tier racing shoe that offers stability without the lateral wobble often found in racing models.

  • Fans of the Adios Pro series with wide feet who need enhanced stability and felt the previous editions too narrow.

Adidas Adios Pro 3 Pros and Cons

  • Fit is now true to size.

  • Thin, breathable upper with heel tabs.

  • Super responsive.

  • Ideal for speedy half marathon and marathon races.

  • Bouncy ride and high energy return.

  • Accommodates wide feet.

  • Outstanding outsole durability.

  • Top-notch grip, even in wet conditions.

  • Supreme stability... in a supershoe!

  • Increased forefoot cushioning.

  • More aggressive toe-spring.

  • Not suited for heel strikers.

  • Increase in weight.

  • Big bump in price.

  • Hard to find the perfect fit.

  • Lacing can be tricky.

  • Risk of heel slippage.

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  • Adidas Adizero Prime X

The Prime X was supposed to be Adidas’ marathon racing shoe but after World Athletics announced that shoes 50 mm and over in stack height would be illegal to race in, they had to create the lower-stacked Adios Pro. Luckily for us, Adidas still chose to release the Prime X to the public.The first two versions were similar, outside of upper differences as relatively light shoes for how much midsole they had. They had incredibly bouncy midsoles that felt like higher and less stable versions of the Adios Pro 2. They were also much heavier than other racing shoes.

Adidas Prime X 2 Strung Review

Released Year: 2023

Price: $300

The Prime X 2 is actually the third version of the Prime X. Built with innovative technology and designed without the constraints of world race regulations, the Prime X 2 Strung offers more performance-driven features in a single race shoe. It's constructed with a STRUNG upper, a textile innovation that transforms athlete data into a dynamic material tuned to the athlete's needs. Prime X 2 Strung also has 3 layers of LIGHTSTRIKE PRO, in a stack height of 50 mm. With an all-new energy core between two layers of foam, it helps to reduce weight and provide spring in the fore- and midfoot, so you can chase your fastest moment. An outsole featuring Continental compound delivers serious grip on a variety of surfaces.

A dramatic increase in weight is the trade-off for these clear improvements, moving the Prime X series away from being a super racer to a true super trainer. Those wanting a solid long-run shoe that does an excellent job performing at easy and marathon-pace runs and has more stack height underfoot than any other shoe may be interested in this shoe. The only thing I didn’t like about them was how unstable they were due to the tall stack height and the narrow midfoot/rearfoot. 

All in all, the adidas Adizero Prime X 2 Strung is a versatile shoes that offers an efficient running experience in a variety of situations, thanks to its higher rocker, increased stability and improved cushioning. It remains a solid choice for runners looking for performance and versatility in training and racing.


Who should buy the Adidas Prime X 2 Strung?

  • If you already own the Adidas Adios Pro 3 and you’re looking for something with more cushioning and more speed assistance.

  • Runners who need a durable shoes for extended wear.

  • Those who focus on intervals, long runs and tempo runs.

  • People who value extreme rocker in the forefoot and great cushioning.

Adidas Prime X 2 Strung Pros and Cons

  • More stable than previous versions.

  • Fun for a variety of runs.

  • High level of speed assistance.

  • Slightly softer ride.

  • Extra high stack (50 mm) for optimal cushioning.

  • Inclusive sizing.

  • As bouncy as it gets.

  • Great grip.

  • Expensive.

  • Less durable outsole.

  • Big weight increase.

  • Not better than “legal” shoes.

  • Still somewhat unstable.

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  • Adidas Adizero Boston 

Debuting in 1982, Boston was originally marketed as a comfortable and affordable road running shoe. In 2010, Adidas added the Boston to their Adizero collection, a group of shoes designed to be as lightweight and fast as possible. Fast forward to 2021, the Boston was redesigned again with innovative technologies and an increased stack height, changing the overall fit and feel of the shoe.Given the major shift, many former Boston lovers were turned away, while others found a liking in a trainer from Adidas that had an overall firmer and rockered ride.

Adidas Boston 12 Review

Released Year: 2023

Price: $160

Enter version 12, another major revamp to the Boston line, which feels like a much more natural progression from version 9.  The Adizero Boston 12 Shoes are built for mid- to long-distance running. They bring a race-day feel to training with a propulsive feel that comes from the glass-fiber infused ENERGYRODS 2.0, which limit energy loss underfoot. They're fast, but that does not come at the cost of durability — the midsole layers ultra-light LIGHTSTRIKE PRO cushioning with a new version of durable LIGHTSTRIKE 2.0 EVA.

The Adidas Boston 12 is sleeker, lighter and more streamlined than the previous two versions. Designers did away with the unnecessary (and heavy!) accents on the upper and updated the midsole with more flexible materials than before. Although these updates may sound like just minor tweaks, they improve the overall experience in a major way.  If you want a spirited daily trainer that can handle workouts, easy days, and race days, you should try the Boston 12.


Who should buy the Adidas Boston 12?

The Adidas Adizero Boston 12 is a training shoe built for mid- to long-distance running. They’re aimed at runners training for a half or full marathon who are incorporating speed training or tempo run into their week and the shoe is designed to give you a boost on these runs.

If you want a durable daily trainer which is firm but cushioned, the Boston 12 is a good option. If you’re looking for a lighter, faster daily trainer than the Solar Boost or Solar Glide, the Boston 12 is for you.

Adidas Boston 12 Pros and Cons

  • Great price for a fast shoe.

  • Sleeker design.

  • Softer ride.

  • Stable ride.

  • Weight reduction.

  • Excellent grip and durability.

  • Good energy return.

  • Snappy toe-off.

  • Smooth cushioning.

  • A bit fast for recovery runs.

  • A little stiff in the upper.

  • Laces slipped.

  • Needs more padding in the tongue.

  • Less rockered.

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Adidas Adios Pro 2 vs. 3 vs. Prime X vs. Boston 12: Comparison Side by Side

1. The Upper

Adios Pro 2 & 3 - Both uppers are made of thin, breathable Celermesh however, the Adios Pro 2’s upper is softer and doesn’t feel as scratchy as the Adios Pro 3.

Prime X 2 Strung - The Strung upper returns, but with some changes. The biggest change is the integrated tongue. If you have a tall foot, be prepared for a struggle getting your foot inside the shoe the first couple of wears. The Strung upper is surprisingly breathable. Your foot stayed relatively cool on hot summer days. And due to its construction, it can’t absorb water. So at least it won’t get any heavier as the run goes along.The lacing and achilles padding on the adidas Prime X 2 Strung are also different but neither change affected the experience much.Just like previous versions, there are no reflective elements on the Prime X 2’s upper.

Boston 12 - The Boston 12’s engineered mesh upper is lighter and more flexible than the previous version.Adidas opted for a racer-style upper. It works. It's comfortable. It's breathable. It's also chilly on wet, sub-30-degree runs. That's probably a non-issue for many runners, but our frozen toes demanded we mention it.The first thing you’ll notice with the Boston 12 is how transparent and thin the upper looks. The idea in itself is great but the result is rather poor with the material used being unpleasant against the foot and quite abrasive. The construction of the upper is also quite interesting with a floating tongue and a gusset connecting the strobel to three middle eyelets on the eyelet chain. 

2. The Midsole

Adios Pro 2 & 3 - Lightstrike Pro foam forms the midsoles of both these 2 racers. Lightstrike Pro in the midsole isn’t the softest foam, nor is it the lightest or the most energy-returning foam but it’s a very complete super foam which can do everything moderately well.The Adios Pro 3 has a wider base compared to the Adios Pro 2 so it feels much more stable.The heel stack heights are the same but the Adios Pro 3 has a thicker forefoot which feels softer than the Adios Pro 2.The Adios Pro 3 has more long distance comfort due to the softer and more cushioned ride so it’s better for long-distance racing.

Prime X 2 Strung - The signature feature of the Prime X line is the tall midsole, which hits 50mm at the heel and 43.5mm at the forefoot for a 6.5mm drop. That’s a slight increase in stack and drop on the 49.5mm/39.5mm of the original Prime X Strung.With all that room available in the midsole Adidas has been able to cram in two carbon-infused plates, which are sandwiched by three layers of its bouncy Lightstrike Pro foam. There’s a lot going on in there, and it’s a different set-up from the first Prime X Strung, which used Adidas EnergyRods and TPU plastic EnergyBlades rather than two plates.The double carbon plates work in conjunction with new midsole geometry to better stabilize the ride. The midsole is flared on both sides of the heel and forefoot to provide natural outriggers that keep you upright. 

Boston 12 - The Adizero Boston 12 are based on Energyrods 2.0 technology, designed for a smooth heel-to-toe transition and optimal performance in sprints and speed workouts. They also feature a midsole that combines ultra-light Lightstrike Pro cushioning technology and new Lightstrike 2.0 EVA foam, which provides high wear resistance. While the Boston 12 isn’t as responsive as its racing counterpart, the Adios Pro 3, it features the same configuration of Energyrods in the midsole to propel you forward. The fiberglass-infused Energyrods help the midsole foam compress during landings and rebound during toe-offs, creating a springy and energetic ride. Finally the energy rods are now carbon (instead of carbon infused fiberglass rods in the previous versions) and they run the whole length of the shoe to maximise the lever effect. 

3. The Outsole

Adios Pro 2 & 3 - Both racers use a modified version of Continental rubber on their outsoles. The rubber is thinner than normal Continental so the outsole have much lower durability. 

Prime X 2 Strung - The outsole is made from Continental rubber and there’s good coverage across the shoe, with just a small central section left exposed. The Continental Rubber outsole did its job, and especially when combined with the improved stability of the shoe, delivered a secure, trust-inspiring experience.On the other hand,the shoe also gets a facelift from the original. Gone is the ribbed outsole and in its place is a smooth, Indy car tire outsole similar to the Adios Pro 3. It features a lot of cutouts for weight savings and a transparent, plasticky rubber section on the medial heel. 

Boston 12 - The Boston 12’s durable outsole is its best feature. Like most Adidas running shoes, the Boston 12 features a Continental rubber outsole which will last a very, very long time. The grippy Continental rubber outsole will give you the confidence to tackle the slick roads with ease.

4. The Fit & Sizing

Adios Pro 2 & 3 - The Adios Pro 3 is true to size while the Adios Pro 2 runs big so you have to go down a half size.The fit of both racers are narrow so they are not recommended for runners with wide feet.

Prime X 2 Strung - The fit is more true to size than last year’s version- there’s less space inside the upper but I still recommend getting your regular size. This is one of the more accommodating racing shoe uppers so it’s great for long runs and suitable for wide feet. 

Boston 12 - The forefoot and toe box are fine but the midfoot is narrow which causes some arch pressure. This might be an issue for wide-footed runners or runners with flat fleet. The fit is true to size and works best for me with medium or thick socks.

Comparison Table

Adios Pro 2Adios Pro 3Prime X 2 StrungBoston 12
Weight7.5 oz7.6 oz10.8 oz9.4 oz
Midsole drop10 mm (heel: 39.5 mm / forefoot: 29.5 mm)6 mm (heel: 40 mm / forefoot: 34 mm)7 mm (heel: 50 mm / forefoot: 43 mm)7 mm (heel: 38 mm / forefoot: 31 mm)
UpperCelermesh 2.0 upper with internal reinforcementsSynthetic upper(contains a minimum of 50% recycled content)

STRUNG upper

Engineered mesh upper
MidsoleLightstrike ProLightstrike ProLightstrike ProLightstrike Pro
OutsoleContinental RubberContinental RubberContinental RubberContinental Rubber
StabilitySome stabilitySome stabilityNot particularly stableVery stable
Type of cushioningBalancedBalancedBalancedResponsive/balanced
Amount of cushioningHighly cushionedHighly cushionedHighly cushionedHighly cushioned
SizingBuy half size smallerTrue to sizeTrue to sizeTrue to size
Best forRacing, speedworkRacing, speedwork,long distance racingEasy runs, or fast runs if you can do itDaily training, tempo, budget race day

Conclusion: Which Is Best for You?

The Adidas Adizero Adios Pro 2 is a smooth-riding super shoe that relies on a rocker for speed. It doesn't have the most propulsion of all the super shoes but it feels more comfortable and energy-saving over long distances.The Adios Pro 3 is an improvement over the Adios Pro 2 in almost every aspect: it’s more stable, it has more cushioning and it feels faster.It is a long-distance specialist. Its highly cushioned midsole and its efficient, energy saving ride make it perfect for marathons and beyond. You should only get the Adios Pro 2 rather than the Adios Pro 3 if price is a big factor and you can’t afford the Adios Pro 3.

The adidas Adizero Boston 12 are designed as a multipurpose option with which you can compete, but also do series, and even those fast and demanding workouts. Developed to run with intensity, offering durability and speed. On the other hand, the Strung Adizero Prime X 2.0 is a high-performance model that challenges the rules of elite racing with revolutionary technologies.The shoe feels more like a super-trainer, and it is a fantastic super-trainer that will bring joy to many everyday runs. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

Does Adios Pro 2 have carbon plate?

The Adios Pro 2 has a carbon plate in the heel as well as carbon energy rods in the midfoot/forefoot.

How high is the heel of Adios Pro 2?

Stack height of 39 mm in the heel, 30.5 in the toe.

When did the Adios Pro 3 come out?

In June 2022, adidas introduced the Adizero Adios Pro 3, its entry into the marathon-ready, “super shoe” competition.

Does Adios Pro 3 have carbon plate?

The biggest difference between the Pro 3 and the previous iterations is that this is a race-day shoe without a full-length carbon plate. Charlotte Heidmann, Adidas running senior product manager, says, 'We moved away from using the carbon plate in the Pro 3 and focused instead on using the energy rods.

How tall are the Adizero Adios Pro 3?

These piece combine for stack height of 39.5mm in the heel and a forefoot stack height of 33mm for a 6.5mm drop.

Is Adizero Adios Pro 3 good for speed?

The adidas Adizero Adios Pro 3 is a big improvement over the previous version. It's fast, responsive, and feels great on the feet.

Is the Adios Pro 3 true to size?

The fit of the Adios Pro 3 has improved at least. You had to go a half size down in the Pro 2 but the Pro 3 is true to size. The heel, midfoot and toe box are on the narrow side but the forefoot is spacious.

What is the Adidas Adizero Prime X for?

The Adidas Adizero Prime X is billed by Adidas as a training shoe to accompany their road legal line up of racing shoes, the Adizero Adios Pro 3 half and marathon distance shoe, and the Adizero Takumi Sen 9, their 5k and 10k shoe.

Can I race in Adidas Prime X?

Yes.Those interested in racing in this will find it works best at marathon pace and above. The excessive amount of Lightstrike Pro provides an extremely bouncy ride that feels great at steady efforts. Anything faster than marathon pace efforts feels awkward and almost like the shoe gets in the way.

Does Adidas Prime X have carbon plate?

This is built in three distinct layers and has a carbon plate under the heel, carbon infused rods in the forefoot and a TPU plate also in the forefoot to add even more rigidity to the whole construction. The shoe is incredible stiff and absolutely does not bend.

Are adidas Prime X 2 Strung legal?

Simply, the World Athletes have set a limit of 40 mm for professional road racing. So, although the adidas adizero prime X 2 strung is illegal for elite racing, it is absolutely fine for the everyday runner looking for a new PB.

Is Boston 12 good for walking?

The Adidas Boston 12 is a no-brainer for runners seeking a firm yet flexible ride that can keep up with any pace. I would recommend this shoe to just about any runner or walker.

Is Boston 12 a daily trainer?

The Adidas Boston 12 is a well-cushioned, performance daily trainer that loves to pick up the pace.

What is Boston 12 used for?

If you are currently training for a fast half marathon or marathon – and you love racing in the Adios Pro 3 – then this performance-centred training shoe really shines at tempo-paced workouts. Yes, the Boston 12 is still a firm ride, but it's a drastic improvement in comparison to the Boston 10 and 11.

Are the Boston 12 good for long runs?

The Adidas Adizero Boston 12 is a training shoe built for mid- to long-distance running. They're aimed at runners training for a half or full marathon who are incorporating speed training or tempo run into their week and the shoe is designed to give you a boost on these runs.

Is the Boston 12 carbon plated?

The energy rods are now carbon (instead of carbon infused fiberglass rods in the previous versions) and they run the whole length of the shoe to maximise the lever effect. The plate in the heel has been removed and the rods form a “Pretzel” shape in the heel.

How long does it take to break in Boston 12?

The Boston 12 needs a break-in mileage, something that did not apply to the Boston 10 and 11.After 30-50 miles, the forefoot feels softer than on day 1.

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2024-04-08 20:3779