After wrecking the standard RS8, I decided to give the EVS RS8 Pro a try. This review may seem familiar to you if you read my EVS RS8 knee brace review, they share a lot of the same features and perform the same in many ways.
EVS RS8 Pro Knee Brace Price: $479.99 From $349.57 on Amazon
EVS RS8 Pro Knee Brace Weight (size large): 1.7 lbs – This is right between the original RS8 and the EVS WEB.
EVS RS8 Pro features / how well do they work?
Perfect Form Fit Frame: EVS claims the RS8 Pro’s frame will form to all leg contours. The frame does have some flex to it, which allows it to form to the leg a very little bit when the straps are tightened down, but not as much as the original RS8.
Carbon fiber torsion limiting struts The carbon fiber torsion limiting struts were added to increase the support of the RS8 pro over the original RS8. The limiting strut adds bulk and the form fit frame loses some of its flex with carbon fiber strut addition, limiting frames ability to form to leg.
Lightweight & impact resistant injection molded shell: This was my favorite thing about the original EVS RS8 knee braces – the RS8 adds a bit of unwelcome bulk. I have always thought it would be great if someone created a knee brace that is halfway between a knee pad and a full out knee brace. EVS did this with the RS8, then added another step in between with the RS8 pro.
Click Tec Buckles: The Click Tec buckles are nice. You adjust the strap for your leg the first time you use them, then can easily adjust the fit for perfect comfort every time using the ratcheting click tec buckle. The carbon limiting strut makes it hard to release the buckle that is just under it. Other click tec buckles can be difficult to release as well. After some fiddling around I found out I had to push the strap in a bit to get it to come loose when this problem arises.
Tru-Motion 2.0 anatomically correct hinges: These hinges are great. They are the same hinges that come on EVS’s higher end WEB and Axis knee braces. They do seem to move naturally with your knee movement.
Dry-Suede comfort liner: It’s supposed to keep you cool and dry, but isn’t noticeably better than liners I’ve had in other knee braces or pads.
Dual Defense total tracking knee cup design: This is a great idea and it works well to protect your knee from impacts in most positions when it’s working correctly. The problem is that the tension strap that helps to keep the inner knee cup in the right place pulls away from the velcro it attaches to and even pulls EVS’s crappy velcro off of the frame. This makes the dual defense system not fully effective because the strap isn’t able to work properly and keep the cup in place.
What I didn’t like… The addition of the carbon limiting strut takes away some of the original RS8’s charm. It adds a considerable amount of bulk and limits the braces ability to form to the leg when strapped into place.
What does EVS need to fix?
Sizing: The sizing is a big issue. After measuring my leg, I determined that I needed a size medium. The medium (RS8) was too small. I got a size large (RS8 Pro) and that was too big! If you look at both sizes side by side, it looks like there should be a size between medium and large. The RS8 & RS8 Pro share a size chart with the EVS WEB. My size medium WEB’s fit me perfect.
Velcro: EVS seems to have an issue with getting velcro to stick to their knee braces. On my WEB’s I fixed this with super glue, for some reason on the RS8’s and RS8 Pro’s I couldn’t get the super glue trick to work. The velcro is a big issue with these braces because it detaches from the brace and causes the dual defense knee cup to work incorrectly. The velcro peeling off from the frame also causes the padding on both the top and bottom part of the brace to slide out of place.
Final Thoughts: I’m not sure the EVS RS8 Pro has a place in the market. It isn’t much (if any) lighter, less bulky or less expensive than most modern knee braces, it also probably doesn’t offer quite as much support as more traditional options. I really do like the idea behind and most things about the standard RS8, but if you’re looking for more support than that offers, I’m not sure the RS8 Pro is the right step.