Adidas NMD R1 vs. R2 [Which One Offers More Value?]

Written By Sunny

NMD has been in the vein of casual footwear lovers for a long time. The appearance and performance make them one of the top-selling series and a better value-for-money option.

I wore the NMD R1 and R2 for two straight years, and till now, I find them comfortable and equally fashionable with ongoing trends.

Today, I’ll share my experience with Adidas NMD and provide major differences between R1 and R2 to help you pick the right shoes.adidas-nmd-r1-vs-r2

Let’s dive in.

Overview of Adidas NMD R1 & R2

The NMD, a short form of Nomad, is a popular series by the world-famous apparel brand Adidas. It has high demand and a huge fan base due to its affordability and performance.

Adidas NMD R1

The R1 is the first model of the Adidas NMD series, released in December 2015. It reflects a classic design and delivers a combination of style and comfort.

The socks-like design, Primeknit upper, and BOOST material give a fashionable and comfy feel in everyday casual usage.

NMD R1 caught the attention of sneaker enthusiasts, and the craze has brought NMD R1 V2, and V3 to the market.

Adidas NMD R2

The NMD R2 is the successor to the Adidas NMD R1, released in December 2016.

It kept the iconic characteristics and the same materials but brought upgrades in the shoe design to give comfort and a refined look.

The sleek silhouette pattern and minimalistic casual design stormed the market and were appreciated by sneakerheads.

R1 and R2 are two NMD siblings who share the same blood and show many similarities.

However, several changes between them distinguish one from the other.

The changes affect the overall user experience, and it’s important to learn about them before purchasing or upgrading to a model.

I’ve described all the crucial points and compared Adidas NMD R1 and R2 below.

Ultimate Feature Comparison Between Adidas NMD R1 & R2

The major difference between Adidas NMD R1 and R2 is in the design structure. It affects the overall size, weight, and stability, which brings changes in perfect fit and comfort.

Let’s compare the features of Adidas NMD R1 and R2 below:

Upper Material & Design

The NMD has a distinct design that separates it from other series. Adidas has re-touched the design characteristics in NMD R2 to give a better

Adidas NMD R1 and R2 use Primeknit for the upper material. It is made from a single piece in both models and is highly breathable.

But, the upper has a different shade and texture in R1 and R2.

NMD R1 has a mesh upper with a smooth shape and plain finish. The shoe has a sock-like design and offers a snug fit to my feet.

The upper material is stretchy and feels comfortable for long-day usage.

On the other hand, the Adidas NMD R2 has a line pattern on the Primeknit upper. It covers all the tops and gives an aesthetic appearance.

When the light falls over the upper at an angle, it delivers a unique shade and looks beautiful.

I’ve found the material stretchy, but not as much as R1.

Both models have toe puffs to protect the front side. But, the toe box in R2 is a bit narrower compared to NMD R1.

NMD R1 and R2 come in regular colors, like black, white, red, yellow, etc. The whole upper has a single color, and the sole offers an opposite to match the contrast.

The three-stripe Adidas logo is clearly visible in both models and covers the quarter area.

The main differences I’ve seen in the body structure of these shoes are in the tongue, lace, and TPU plug.


NMD R1 doesn’t have a physical tongue mechanism. The whole upper is made out of a single piece.

It gives a good fit but troubles a lot when you need to tighten the lace.

The system has changed in R2, and a physical tongue is present there. It helps to adjust the fit and tie the lace firmly.adidas-nmd-r1-r2-tongue-laces

Eyelets & Lace

The NMD R1 has a plastic eyestay and contains three eyelets on both sides.

The shoe has no separate tongue, so the lace doesn’t provide the best support and firm tightening.

On the contrary, the design is wholly redesigned in NMD R2.

It has five eyelets on both sides, and they are embedded in the upper material. The tongue and laces can give you a loose or tight fit as you prefer.

TPU Plug

The TPU plug is attached to the sole and located at the medial and lateral sides of the shoe. It gives stability and support in standing and walking.

Adidas NMD R1 has three TPU plugs, one on the inner side and two on the outer side.

The medial plug sits between the heel and midfoot. The lateral plugs cover the heel and forefoot area.

In contrast, R2 has just one TPU plug at the medial side of the shoe. It’s larger in size compared to R1 and placed in between heel and midfoot.adidas-nmd-r1-r2-tup-lugs

Midsole & Outsole

Adidas features the BOOST midsole in the NMD R1 and R2 shoe. It’s soft, bouncy, and gives a cushiony feel after wearing.

The midsole in R2 is slightly thicker than NMD R1, which makes it more comfortable.

The outsole is the same and made out of rubber in both models. The outsole lug pattern is the same in both models.

Size & Weight

Adidas NMD R1 and R2 both fit true to size. So, you don’t have to worry about the size if you are from the US, UK, EU, or other regions.

I’ve used both previously, and they almost feel the same in feet.

But the R1 is stretchier and feels looser after some days. So, I would recommend purchasing half or one size smaller than your regular size for a perfect fit.

On the other hand, NMD R2 is slightly narrower.

If you have wider feet, you can size up for a better fit.

Both models are made out of the same material and weigh the same. Depending on shoe size, they weigh from 250g to 300g.

Fit & Comfort

Both NMD R1 and R2 are stretchy and bite the feet pretty nicely.

I’ve used them for two years and never felt uncomfortable in regular usage. The same goes for my buddy. He’s been using the NMD R2, and his experience is very satisfactory.

Compared to R1, the NMD R2 has better lace functionalities and tightens the shoe very easily.

So, if you prefer a tight lace fit, the R2 would give better comfort.

Both shoes have a textile lining in the heel collar. But the R2’s cushioning feels much softer compared to R1.cushioning-of-adidas-nmd-r2

The insole and foam in the midfoot and forefoot area are sufficient to give comfort for an extended period.

The BOOST technology is revolutionary and gives a very soft feel on the heel side.

However, if you come from Ultraboost or Solarboost and wear the NMDs, it won’t feel very comfortable. Because Ultraboost and Solarboost are newer technology and superior in comfort.

Stability & Support

The NMDs are very stretchy, and the soft BOOST midsole makes it unstable in crooked or off-road.

Therefore, R1 and R2 use TPU plugs on the sole for better stability and support during walking or running.

Adidas NMD R1 has three TPU plugs compared to just one in NMD R2.

The R1 supports both the medial and lateral sides of the foot. However, the NMD R2 only assists in the inner side of the shoe.

Stability-wise, the R1 performs better. But the NMD R2 isn’t far behind.

It has a much bigger TPU plug, which covers the failings, and you won’t feel much difference after wearing them.

Durability & Performance

The Adidas NMD series is popular for its durability. The upper, midsole, and outsole materials are the same in both R1 and R2.

So, there’s no significant difference in durability and performance.

I’ve walked over 300 miles using my NMD R1 and R2, and the cushioning, midsole, and outsole are still in good condition.

My friend bought the R2 in 2018 and is still using it without any issues.

If you wear it for casual purposes and take good care of it, it will easily last for a couple of years.

Price Differences

There’s only a year difference between the release date of NMD R1 and R2.

They offer the same quality and performance, so there’s not much variance in price.

Adidas NMD R1Adidas NMD R2
Around $120 - $150Around $130 - $150

Shoes of the same size between the two models have around $10 differences. But sometimes, the price may vary due to discounts in the official store.

Pros & Cons: Adidas NMD R1 and R2

Adidas NMD R1 and R2 are from the same series. But they have some differences which can give advantages and disadvantages to some users.

Here are the pros and cons of Adidas NMD R1 and NMD R2:

Adidas NMD R1

  • »Attractive design and appearance.
  • »Snug and socks-like feel.
  • »Versatile and suitable for walking and casual purposes.
  • »Very affordable.
  • »Has three TPU plugs.The tongue
  • »Tongue and laces don’t give good tightenings.

Adidas NMD R2

  • »Thick BOOST midsole.
  • »Very lightweight.
  • »Offers a minimalistic outlook.
  • »Tongue and laces offer regular tightenings.
  • »Slightly narrower in the forefoot and toe box area.

Adidas NMD R1 vs R2: Which Should You Buy?

Both Adidas NMD R1 and R2 are equally popular with sneaker lovers. They are very affordable and deliver a good user experience.

The performance is almost identical. So, you can choose either R1 or R2 that matches your personality better.

But, if you have wider feet, want a stretchy, tight fit, and don’t mind about the laces and plugs on the side, NMD R1 will be your go-to shoes.

However, if you have regular or narrow feet, want a working tongue & laces, or prefer a minimalistic design with no plugs on the outer side, the Adidas NMD R2 is your best choice.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is NMD R1 so popular?

Adidas NMD R1 is very affordable and provides a good value-for-money option. It’s more accessible than other expensive NMD models, making it popular among sneaker enthusiasts.

Are NMD R1 still in style?

NMD R1 might be eight years old, but it still has equal popularity and hype with its casual appearance. You can wear it and go with the current trend flow easily.

Are Adidas NMD good for walking?

Yes, Adidas NMD is very good for walking. You can casually walk in the city area wearing it. But it’s not ideal for walking on crooked roads or off-road.

About The Author
Sunny is all about action and activities. He finds it difficult to contain himself. Be it motorcycling, playing football, or exploring the great outdoors, he loves to keep his legs busy.Sunny quickly realized the importance of footwear to keep himself going healthily. This was when he decided to share all his knowledge and expertise regarding different footwear and their significance.Now, he’s on a mission with this humble platform by his side. With time he plans on doing bigger and better things.Apart from his writing and other hobbies, he loves spending time with his cat Sophie. He loves to cook for his friends and family too.

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