These shoes are unbelievable, I love everything about them! The Dark Matter rubber is definitely the stickiest of anything on the market compared to the various other shoes I’ve used (5.10, LaSportiva ), and contrary to some of the expert reviews I read online prior to reading, while it is a softer rubber its held up incredibly well and not worn down faster than other rubbers on the market ( should note, I’ve used these for indoor climbing only this far ). These shoes are hyper aggressive and are exceptionally awesome for pitch-back and roof climbing, yet despite how aggressive they are I’ve found them to be incredible comfortable as well. The only flip side to that, due to how aggressive they are and the fit, I definitely wouldn’t recommend these for beginners. The one and only issue I had was about a month after climbing in them a part of the sole starting peeling away at a spot that doesn’t contact that wall ever, however contacted So Ill, and their customer service was awesome and immediately let me know that was a rare manufacturing defect and they shipped me a new pair of which have not had any issues at all. Literally won’t climb in anything but So Ill from here out!!
These are great bouldering shoes but suited for advanced+ climbers!
Has great point pressure on the wall with a killer look to match.
Not only do they pop dont let the slick look of these shoes fool you they preform amazingly. From high heel hooks overhanging terrain and supper sticky rubber these shoes rock.
I've worn the 5.10 Blackwing since 2013 and when it got discontinued I started looking for a shoe that could fill the void. The Free Range is it and more. Probably one of the best climbing shoes I've ever worn and I've gone through a lot (La Sportiva, Scarpa, 5.10, Evolve) now finally landed with So iLL and couldn't be happier. I emailed customer service to help point me to a shoe with the characteristics of the Blackwing. It came down between the Free Range and New Zero - I opted for the Free Range due to the medium stiffness (which they balanced with the perfect amount of sensitivity) Louis was super helpful answering my questions, concerns and sizing - response time was within hours.
First impression - Looks aggressive. The green color pops. Sick shoe. It's easy to get in and out of. Nice padded tongue. The single strap lets you adjust easily to what kind of climbing you'll be doing. There is little to no heel slip but when strapped high there is no way the heel is coming out. The rubber GRIPS - super sticky. Fun shoe to climb in.
Sizing. So iLL chart is 100% accurate. If you're bouldering V5 or higher 1/2 size up. Measure your foot exactly. I am a 10, bought 10.5 and it was a squeeze. The kind of feeling that once broken in, it's still slightly uncomfortable - which is want I want in a performance climbing shoe. If you want to it be "comfortable" - most likely for gym climbing then I'd say go a full size up. For reference I wore a 10.5 in 5.10 Blackwings and these fit exactly the same. tight. tight. tight.
So iLL Thanks for keeping it simple in design, aesthetically appealing, and making straight up performance climbing shoes. As long as you don't become notorious for discontinuing shoes that make the climbing world happy - this will be my go to brand.
• FREE RANGE •
The Free Range offers up a unique one-strap, cross-foot closure system to keep dead spots to a minimum so that you are fully in control. The thick padded tongue adds an extra level of comfort.
As our most aggressive shoe, the Free Range has more rubber coverage and heel tension than any other model in the So iLL line, offering an unprecedented amount of technical precision.