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Living up to their name, the Fizik Tempo Decos Carbon Wide shoes are significantly wider than the standard model, but retain impressive stiffness in the sole and comfortable uppers. They are hard to miss in bright white, but it's also hard to miss the price – and the limited adjustment possible for that money.
Some companies are known for their shoes being a wider or narrower fit, and my previous experience of Fizik shoes is that they are among the narrowest, appealing to those who either have narrower feet or just prefer a tighter fit.
I have always tended to use shoe brands known for having a wider fit, but with Fizik introducing wide fit models on a number of its road shoes, I was interested to see how these measured up. The Tempo Decos fall in the middle of the wide fit models in terms of pricing.
Fizik has a size chart and printable sizing guide that can help you determine which model suits your shape of foot best – standard or wide. Mine, as expected, fall within the wide range. The sizing guide also put my feet half an EU size below what I would typically choose, which was a surprise.
This size guide proved accurate, with the length being great and the width of the shoe significantly more generous than a standard Fizik shoe – and compared with other brands' standard width options.
The construction is excellent, with neat stitching and a very tidy junction between sole and upper, with no gaps or signs of glue evident inside or out. Combined with the colour, it certainly creates a sleek look.
The bright white of the shoes certainly stands out, and while you might fear spoiling the finish, I found they at least wipe clean well. If you don't want a gleaming shoe, or the potential hassle of cleaning them, you'll be disappointed to hear that white is the only colour the wide version is available in.
Fizik claims the shoes have arch support, and the insole does have some shape within this area, with a ridge near the arch, but I found it to be minimal and nowhere near the support that some shoe or insole companies offer.
Fit and comfort are going to be personal, but I have a high arch and high instep, and for me the basic shape of the footbed wasn't a perfect fit. On multiple occasions I suffered from numbness in one foot, causing hot foot, which was only eased by releasing tension from the Boa dial.
Although the Tempo Decos only have a single Li2 Boa dial, it does offer two-way adjustment that allows simple and precise movement in both directions, with small steps between each click. The single Boa does, however, mean any adjustment will affect the entire shoe, unlike models with multiple adjustment options such as dual Boas or a small Velcro strap near the front.
When attempting to loosen the fit and prevent pain, I found adjusting the single Boa left the front of the shoe looser than I would have preferred, and while I like the extra width, it does also mean extra volume, with limited option to reduce it.
For the price of the shoe, the single adjustment dial makes them look expensive compared with others. For example, Shimano has the RC7 at £189.99 (up a tenner since Steve tested them in 2020) and Sidi the Genius 10 at £250 – both available in a wide fit, and both having multiple adjustment.
Other brands with both standard and wide fit options include Lake, Bont and Northwave.
The Tempo Decos' upper is perforated throughout, and even in hot weather I found them fine, with no issues concerning heat or sweat build-up. The sole also has vents, though I didn't find them any more cooling than other shoes.
On the sole the cleat slots allow plenty of adjustment, which will really suit those who prefer their cleats to be set either very far forward or very far back. At the most extreme rear point, and fitted with cleats that also have sliding adjustment, it verges on a mid-foot position.
Adjustment markings should ensure you get a similar fit on both shoes, or when making small adjustments to perfect the cleat positioning.
One area where the shoe excels is sole stiffness, with the R2 unidirectional carbon design measuring as a 10 on the Fizik Stiffness scale; unlike some brands, this is the highest available – no Spinal Tap measurements here.
They are light, too, if that matters to you – just 440g for the test pair in an EU size 40.5, which is lighter than many top-end shoes, including the Shimano S-Phyre RC9s at 497g a pair (for the size 42 Liam tested), and even some minimal lace-up designs such as the Specialized S-Works 7 Lace Roads – a claimed 472g in a size 44, an actual 508g on the road.cc Scales of Truth in a size 46 tested.
Only a few models are lighter, including the Giro Empire SLX, which have a claimed weight of 350g for a pair of size 42.5s, measured at 408g on our scales for a size 45 in our test.
The addition of a wide fit option will be very welcome if you've previously found these great looking shoes too narrow. That said, the overall fit is let down by the use of just a single Boa dial – they could really do with more adjustment elsewhere; I found the toe-box area generous, but with just that single dial there's no independent adjustment of this area.
Sleek, stiff and generously wide, but the single Boa means limited adjustment
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Fizik Tempo Decos Carbon Wide
Size tested: 7 UK
Tell us what the product is for
"Decos is a performance road shoe for riders outside of the demanding pro peloton.
Instead, the new Decos epitomises fizik's famed minimalist design at its finest. For these shoes we took a disciplined approach toward simplicity to deliver the pure road riding experience you expect from fizik, from epic, big-mountain rides to granfondos and beyond
Designed with a performance fit for riders with wider feet, the Decos Carbon Wide provides a higher volume fit with more room at the forefoot around the ball of the foot and metatarsals.
At the base, the R2 outsole's engineered carbon fibre layup saves weight and delivers increased stiffness, with a stiffness index rating of 10, making this outsole the most responsive in the fizik range. A wide vent inlet and deep internal channelling provide cooling airflow, aiding in temperature regulation. The cleat positioning is set slightly further back compared to traditional settings to optimise pedalling efficiency and reduce knee compression''especially well-suited for very aggressive, forward aero positions.
The sleek uppers utilise a resilient polyurethane-laminated material combined over a comfortable mesh, resulting in reduced yield and providing long lasting foot support where it's needed most. The fit is practical and quickly fine-tuned with a single bi-directional Li2 BOA® dial."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
PU laminate over mesh upper
Li2 BOA® Fit System
R2 outsole – full carbon unidirectional, stiffness index 10
Weight: 230 g
Sizes: 36-48 (37 to 47 also in half sizes)
Good fabrics throughout, with impeccable finish.
The limited adjustment can affect comfort and performance; I was having to use them looser overall than I would have liked. The single Boa seems basic for the price. Stiffness is good, and if you were able to tighten them more securely, they would suit racers.
The bright white wipes clean fairly well but will mark more clearly than darker fabrics.
They are aptly named and are noticeably wider than the standard Fizik models, and wider than the majority of other brands. They are also high volume within the toe area, but the single Boa makes this difficult to adjust.
The size guide from Fizik proved good, despite going down a size from what I would normally choose.
The weight is approaching that of very minimal lace versions.
The insoles are quite basic, and have a small ridge under the metatarsal area.
More expensive than most others that have similar features with a single Boa.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
They wipe clean fairly well, or with a hose. Long-term, I would expect some dirt to show on a bright white shoe.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
The shoe lives up to its name, and I found the width within the front of the shoe good. The single Boa, however, is basic for the price, giving limited adjustment. I also found the pronounced ridge to the outer edge of the arch uncomfortable.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The fit, and wide toe-box area.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The single Boa gives a limited range of adjustment on the shoe as a whole. I found it could be too tight on the upper area, but loose on the bottom.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
Looking at other wide fit shoes, Shimano has the RC7 at £189.99 and Sidi the Genius 10 at £250 – both with multiple adjustment.
Did you enjoy using the product? They were OK, and the width in particular was great. For longer use I would replace the insole in an attempt to increase arch support.
Would you consider buying the product? Probably not, as although the width at the toe area is good, the lack of adjustment creates another problem.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? If they were looking for a high-performance shoe with a wide toe box area I'd suggest they consider them.
Use this box to explain your overall score
Though these deliver excellent performance and stiffness, with perfect finishing, the single Boa adjustment does make for limited adjustment, especially when compared with others at a similar price. They're good, but more adjustment would up the score.
About the tester
I usually ride: My best bike is: Cannondale SystemSix
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, cyclo cross, sportives, mtb, Lots of gravel style riding