Brooks Launch 4 vs. Brooks Ravenna 8 review

Brooks Launch 4 is a light and comfortable neutral running shoe for fast-paced runners. Brooks Ravenna 8 provides comfort and cushioning to moderate overpronators.

The Brooks Launch 4 and the Brooks Ravenna 8 fall in two different categories of running shoes, with the Brooks Launch 4 being a neutral cushioning running shoe and the Brooks Ravenna 8 a stability running shoe.

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Nonetheless, when you look at the Brooks Ravenna 8 and the Brooks Launch 4 The preceding link takes you to Amazon.com, you can hardly distinguish between them because they look so similar.

Similarities start in the upper where both the Brooks Ravenna 8 The preceding link takes you to Amazon.com and the Brooks Launch 4 have a very open forefoot and most of their overlays centered around the midfoot towards the back of the shoes.

The first very noticeable difference is that the Brooks Ravenna 8 comes with a thin strip that runs along the lower edge of the upper from front to back, so may tuck in your toes a bit more than the Brooks Launch 4 does.

A second difference is that the Brooks Ravenna 8 comes with an extra strap that pulls the saddle towards the back of the shoe to increase the amount of support around the midfoot and heel, which is what overpronators need.

Other than those two differences, the uppers are quite similar, especially due to the minimization of stitches to keep your feet comfortable and irritation free.

All in all, the Brooks Ravenna 8 delivers a bit more support through its upper than the Brooks Launch 4, but this is understandable because neutral runners do not need as much support as overpronators do.

Similarities between the Brooks Launch 4 and the Brooks Ravenna 8 continue in the midsole, where both running shoes make use of the same type of midsole material and cushioning, although the construction of their midsoles differ.

The construction differs in that the Brooks Ravenna 8 comes with support on the medial side to help stop the feet of overpronators from rolling too far inward, while the Brooks Launch 4 does not.

The lateral side of the midsoles of the two running shoes look quite similar with both having a small crash pad under the heel.

In terms of cushioning, running shoe lab test results show that the Brooks Ravenna 8 provides a bit more cushioning than the Brooks Launch 4 in both the heel and the forefoot and to both men and women.

For men, both running shoes have almost an equal amount of forefoot cushioning, but the Brooks Ravenna 8 provides almost twice as much heel cushioning as the Brooks Launch 4.

Overall, the cushioning of the Brooks Ravenna 8 lies just above average for men.

For women, the Brooks Launch 4 offers an average amount of forefoot cushioning, while the Brooks Ravenna 8 lies just a little bit above that.

However, the Brooks Ravenna 8 provides quite a bit of heel cushioning to women, while the amount in the Brooks Launch 4 lies below average.

So the conclusion is that men and women should be able to get a comfortable ride from the Brooks Ravenna 8 that is soft enough for long runs but not so soft to prevent you from going fast, and that the heel of the Brooks Launch 4 might feel a bit firm to male and female heel-strikers.

The outsole is another place where the Brooks Launch 4 and the Brooks Ravenna 8 resemble each other a lot.

Both come with a typical cross under the midfoot to provide faster heel-to-toe transitions, although the cross is more pronounced in the Brooks Launch 4 than it is in the Brooks Ravenna 8 due to extra support at the sides under the midfoot of the Brooks Ravenna 8.

The outsole of the Brooks Launch 4 is overall a bit more cut and separated than that of the Brooks Ravenna 8.

This benefits the flexibility of the Brooks Launch 4, which according to running shoe lab tests is very flexible and more flexible than the Brooks Ravenna 8 for both men and women.

The Brooks Ravenna 8 is also quite flexible for women but somewhat stiff for men.

The women's version of the Brooks Launch 4 weighs approximately 7.7 oz (218 grams), while the Brooks Ravenna 8 for women weighs approximately 9.0 oz (255 grams).

The men's version of the Brooks Launch 4 weighs about 9.2 oz (261 grams), and the Brooks Ravenna 8 for men weighs about 10.8 oz (306 grams).

The Brooks Launch 4 and the Brooks Ravenna 8 look very similar but serve two different crowds.

If you are a neutral runner, the Brooks Launch 4 would be the one to look into, and if you are a moderate overpronator, the Brooks Ravenna 8 would be the one to consider.

Note: The weight of a running shoe depends on the size of the running shoe, so any weights mentioned in this review may differ from the weight of the running shoe you choose to wear. Running shoes of the same size were compared for this review.

The two links above will take you to Amazon.com where you can read more about the running shoes.


This review falls under: Brooks

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