Pearl Izumi Microsensor Short Shorts

3.7/5 (20 Reviews)
MSRP : $130.00


Product Description



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Reviews 1 - 15 (20 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:3
Submitted by decisivemoment a Weekend Warrior from Chicago, IL

Date Reviewed: November 6, 2007

Strengths:    Have to revise my previous comparative review of the 2004 and 2007 Pearl Izumi shorts. There is one big thing I overlooked in the 2007 and also one thing a previous reviewer wrote that I have to acknowledge -- and both are weaknesses for me. What a shame -- such a great product otherwise, amazingly quick drying, form fitting if sized correctly, etc. etc.

Weaknesses:    Pearl have shortened their inseam since 2004. Amazing but true. So to keep the same inseam, it seems as though a 5'9" person moves up from a small to a medium, which is probably too big in the waist if they're in shape, and a six-footer moves from a medium to a large, which is the same problem all over again -- unless, of course, you like a shorter inseam and then it's OK.

Also, what the previous reviewer said about having the Pearl 3D logo and patent numbers stamped to the inside of the chamois. Whoever cooked that one up is obviously a lot more into corporate fads than wearing bike shorts.


Bottom Line:   
Pearl has a great product spoiled by two avoidable mistakes -- the inseam debacle and the logo decals on the insert in a very painful place. I'll be a Pearl customer again once these two problems are solved. Lower ratings for now.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Purchased At:   LBS

Similar Products Used:   See below -- Sugoi (great tailoring, poorly designed insert can cause numbness), Canari.

Bike Setup:   Specialized Rockhopper MTB and a roadie.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by decisivemoment a Weekend Warrior from Chicago

Date Reviewed: October 26, 2007

Strengths:    Note that this review covers both the 2004 Microsensors and the current 07 model. This for some time has been a nicely cut short with great breathable fabric that's pretty tough. But for a long time Pearl did not seem to get it with the chamois. In their quest to simulate leather, they had a chamois that did not stay dry. For 2007 that problem is gone; the chamois is thinner, better shaped, and is dry when you take the shorts off even after a strenuous ride.

Also, if your seat bones are on the wide side, fortunately so is the Pearl chamois. If you have narrow seat bones, you might want to consider another short although the new style chamois won't bunch up in a small crotch like I suspect the old one would have.

If you like a suede leather style chamois, avoid Pearl -- they have gone the synthetic route. But personally I think this is a very good thing.


Weaknesses:    Pre 2006 models have chamois inserts that don't breathe enough so they get damp. You won't want to ride a pre'06 for a century or a 24-hour ride, let's put it that way. Also the price is on the high side, but the good news is they haven't changed it in the last three years, and they're still made in the USA. It doesn't seem as outlandish as it used to.

Bottom Line:   
Much improved on older models. Pearl is getting it. And even though the price is still on the high side, at least they haven't raised it in a while, a steady price while holding production here in the US.

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Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $90.00

Purchased At:   LBS

Similar Products Used:   Sugoi shorts (same insert breathing trouble). Plan to buy Boure Elite (similar insert to new style Pearl, slightly more aggressive cut for road riding than Pearl).

Bike Setup:   Specialized Rockhopper A1 Comp plus a road bike.

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:3
Submitted by P a Cross Country Rider from ATL

Date Reviewed: August 30, 2007

Strengths:    good fit due to multi panel design, quality chamois, quality construction.

Weaknesses:    There is some lettering that is heat zapped into the chamois, right near the "boys" and the captain. It says " 3D Pro", then some other stuff in smaller letters, around the outside of the chamois but still in a bad area. If the lettering contacts skin durring the ride, you will regret it. Heat zapping means it can not be removed.

Bottom Line:   
Great shorts if it was not for the lettering on the chamois. Had to come up with ideas to protect from chaffing in areas that contact the lettering. Chamois butter does not do the trick alone. I prefer to use my lower end Ultras because they dont have the lettering. I think this was a very bad design because it adds absolutely no function beyond a source of painful chaffing in an area your girl will surely notice.

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Favorite Trail:   Pinhotti

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Purchased At:   Ebay

Similar Products Used:   Fox and other Pearl stuff

Bike Setup:   Mt and Road

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by zach heylmun a Cross Country Rider from Omaha Ne.

Date Reviewed: June 24, 2007

Strengths:    Great bib shorts, comfy and dry, with the best chammy I have ever ridden.

Weaknesses:    None, maybe cut if you are not athletic.

Bottom Line:   
These are the best shorts I have ever ridden hands down. I have 07 shorts, so I cant attest to these old reviews, but my shorts have none of the problems mentioned here. The chammy is super comfaortable, with denser foam under your sitbones and softer pading for the front. Also, being as how the edges of the chammy are completely smooth and out of the way I dont see how you could possibly chafe there. (The shammy extends far enough that the edges are not in areas that experience friction.) I rode a twelve hour mtb race in these on a cheap slr style saddle with no chammy butter and was comfortable the whole time. The only problem I could foresee is fit on anyone who is overweight. The bib is very form fitting, and it may be a little tight if you have a belly. The shorts are very expensive, but you get what you pay for.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Razorback

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $60.00

Similar Products Used:   Several canari and specialized shorts.

Bike Setup:   Specialized toupe on my road bike and bontrager race light on my mtb.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Richard a Cross Country Rider from Sydney, Australia

Date Reviewed: September 28, 2006

Strengths:    Good cut and fit for me, Keeps me dry wicks moisture out well especially around the saddle area. Light weight. Nice simple cut and design.I found the 2003 Micros the best fit still my favourite. 2005/current new models seem a bit different in fit but they still wick moisture the same. maybe I have to break them in further. Still look good after a long period of use.

Weaknesses:    Chamois chaffed a bit after 3 hours but don't they all? A bit of Chamois cream fixed it. I havent really had any problems with them.

Bottom Line:   
I think these are designed to fit a leaner pro / athletic type body. This year I notice the difference like more chaffing in the seat/crotch prior to burning off the winter fat. Everyone has a different body shape I geuss, If they are the right cut for your body, definately worth the $$$$..

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Favorite Trail:   Menai

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $100.00

Purchased At:   Ebay

Similar Products Used:   Nalini, Attack bib Knicker other PI,

Bike Setup:   MTB + road bike

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Kim Whitehouse a Cross Country Rider from Sydney, Australia

Date Reviewed: June 25, 2006

Strengths:    There are NO strengths to these nicks...

Weaknesses:    These are the WORST nicks I have ever had the agony of riding in...They were purachsed after many years of being a dedicated Ultrasensor wearer. I wanted to see how the next level of nicks performed. These nicks are terrible, the pad is like riding on a pad with razors for seams, the pad is extremely hard in the middle causing serious pain on long rides actually on any rides (I can not do a 50 minute spin class without chamois cream - that is pathetic!). The nicks fit terribly, all bunched up on the back seams and they need to be folded over at the top to stop them slipping around (these are the same size as the Ultrasensor nicks I have been wearing for years so why change the sizing???). In short these nicks make minutes in the saddle painful, they edge of the pad wears skin away in a very short amount of time. For nicks go elsewhere - forget these!

Bottom Line:   
Girls, If you want a bottom at the end of a ride look else where for nicks to cushion your pink bits!

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Favorite Trail:   Wiseman's Ferry NSW

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $165.00

Purchased At:   Burwood Bikes - NSW Australia

Similar Products Used:   Ultrasensor, Castelli

Bike Setup:   Frame and wheels...

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Dave a Weekend Warrior from Redding, CA, USA

Date Reviewed: January 4, 2006

Strengths:    Perfect fit, Microsensor chamois is awesome, leg grippers do their job with no discomfort!

Weaknesses:    NONE. I, too, cannot believe anyone has trouble with these shorts. You must make sure to get the right size, and you must wash them in cool water and air dry them to keep them in perfect shape and comfy. No fabric softener or heat dry.

Bottom Line:   
These are pricey and worth it. I have gone through lots of cheap shorts and they don't hold up and are not nearly as comfy. Know your size, and if you can't decide between two, go for the larger. I will only buy Pearl Izumi clothing from now on; it's the only brand that does it ALL.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $45.00

Purchased At:   ebay

Similar Products Used:   Everything from 1970's wool and sheep chamois, cotton, lycra, you name it.

Bike Setup:   I have a decent gel saddle. What else matters here?

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Ray a Cross Country Rider from Brandon, MS, USA

Date Reviewed: September 9, 2004

Strengths:    Fabric wicks and is good quality.

Weaknesses:    Poor Fit, pad bunches up and causes chafing. I have had chafing problems in two different areas. Underneath and on the back edges of the pad seam.

My wife also has a pair of the "women's" microsensor short and the leg elastic started breaking apart after her first ride. It is all fuzzy now. She has had bad sores develop at the chamois seams at the back preventing her from riding for several days.

All this year, We kept trying to use these shorts because they cost so much money. We have finally decided that is is not worth it to keep getting blisters.


Bottom Line:   
If you use lots of Chamois Butter, they work good. These are the only shorts I have ever owned that required chamois butter to avoid blisters, and I used to ride with leather chamois shorts many years ago.

I really would not recommend these shorts due to the high cost to "risk of problems" ratio. If they work for you, great, but I could not tell a buddy to drop the cash on a pair of these and feel good about the recommendation.

After spending over $260 on two pair, and then they don't work, I am not looking to buy expensive shorts again any time soon.

I am rating a one chili for value due to now having $260 worth of non-wearable lycra.

I am rating the overall at three due to the fact that the lycra fabric material quality and workmanship are better than most shorts that I have owned.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Clear Springs

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $140.00

Purchased At:   LBS

Similar Products Used:   Pace, Giordana, Assos, Avocet, etc.

Bike Setup:   Typical lightweight XC race.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Andrew a Cross Country Rider from The ATL

Date Reviewed: August 28, 2004

Strengths:    I can't believe all the bad reviews. These are, by far, the best shorts I've ever owned. It fits me like a glove and apart from the occasional tug at the butt I forget I'm wearing them. The chamois works itself in, and after a few rounds in the washer you're good to go.

Weaknesses:    Pricey at $120 but if you can get them cheaper, well worth it. If you drove your Ferarri every day it would eventually break down. Same thing with these shorts. Put them in a rotation and they'll give you good service.

Bottom Line:   
Best shorts(non baggy)out there!

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $96.00

Purchased At:   R.E.I.

Similar Products Used:   Sugoi,Nike,Canari

Bike Setup:   Cool old school!

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:3
Submitted by dan barzel a Weekend Warrior from memphis, tennessee

Date Reviewed: July 1, 2004

Strengths:    good pad, dry preformance, look good

Weaknesses:    tight in the privates, price

Bottom Line:   
The product is great, but the cut is an issue. Buy up a size, I didn't, but would. They look great.
The cut binds on your nads and is too tight, but otherwise a great product.

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Favorite Trail:   road - 20-40 miles, mtn - 7-15 miles

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $100.00

Purchased At:   performance

Similar Products Used:   ultrasensors, old izumis,

Bike Setup:   road is litespeed arenberg, mtn is tomac hardtail

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Tracy a Racer from BFE, Georgia

Date Reviewed: May 13, 2004

Strengths:    NONE except hopefully they are returnable.

Weaknesses:    Seams pucker, HARD, raised chamois center, tight aroung legs, saggy across butt. Did a woman actually wear these before they were put on the market?

Bottom Line:   
I couldn't find a women's specific review board so am posting this here and hoping that the women will find it. Ladies, DO NOT BUY THESE SHORTS. When I first got the shorts I noticed how the seams wrinkled in the back. The info. guy at Pearl Izumi told me to shrink them in the dryer, which I did with some success. Now the legs are too tight. The next thing I noticed on a longer ride is how supremely uncomfortable the pad is. It is raised in the center section and very hard. You would think that part would be cut away and soft, wouldn't you? To put it mildly, these shorts hurt. Not at all happy with the performance given the high price. Hopefully, REI will take them back.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   the dirt ones

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $120.00

Purchased At:   REI

Similar Products Used:   Nike, Performance, Team Sponsor shorts whatever they are.

Bike Setup:   Does it really affect my shorts?

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:3
Submitted by Dror a Cross Country Rider from Ca

Date Reviewed: March 14, 2004

Strengths:    Good wicking, nice look, fit.

Weaknesses:    Durability??????, Comfort

Bottom Line:   
Not sure about the comfort, they did not fit well at the begining of the climb and caused some pain on my left, than after some adjustment all became comfy. I rode for less than 2 hours without falling or touching anything to find at the end that some of the fabric started to disintegrated (brushed agains some other part of the shorts?). Similar thing happend to the seam in the area.
I expected more from top of the line product.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Tested or demo'ed only

Price Paid:    $120.00

Purchased At:   REI

Similar Products Used:   old Ultrasensors

Bike Setup:   Bontrager HT with Thudbuster seat suspension and Terry Flight saddle

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Hunter a Racer from New Jersey

Date Reviewed: March 12, 2004

Weaknesses:    Seams are stiff, bunch up and don't lay flat when moving around.

Bottom Line:   
This review is for the new RED LABEL Heli-Arc bib but since it doesn't have a spot, I'm reviewing it here. While the intent to creat a bib with no seams is great in theory, they failed in execution. The seams are very stiff, bunch up and don't lay flat when moving around. They remind me of glued seams on an old raft that rubs and chafs your skin. Perhaps they will soften and get better with time, but for $220 I'm not willing to take the chance. They are going right back to the store. If your willing to spend this much money, do yourself a favor and get a pair of Assos. They are expensive, but you get what you pay for and you'll never wear anything else.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Tested or demo'ed only

Price Paid:    $220.00

Purchased At:   Performance

Similar Products Used:   Many but only use Assos.

Bike Setup:   Do you really care?

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Mike Anderson a Racer from Alpena, Michigan

Date Reviewed: January 25, 2004

Strengths:    These are the best shorts out there by far. I have done 100 mile road races and never get saddle sores. Also great for mountain bike epics. They put no pressure on the privates. I have put over 8,000 miles of mountain biking and road biking on them and they look new. The shammy is the perfect thickness and they are a pleasure to wear. If you are a avid cyclist these are great,


Weaknesses:    none- worth every penny

Bottom Line:   
Best shorts out there guarentee you will love these shorts; you will be wearing them when your not riding

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   boyne Mountain

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $100.00

Purchased At:   performance bike

Bike Setup:   Kona Kula Primo;All new XTR; Thompson seat post & stem; Rock shox Sid Race; Sella Italia SLR

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by timski a Cross Country Rider from Cranbrook, Canada

Date Reviewed: January 20, 2004

Strengths:    Best shammy ever!
Very light, excellent airflow.


Weaknesses:    Could use a bit more stretch.
Price.


Bottom Line:   
Bought the bib shorts because my girlfriend talked me into it. Didn't want to spend that much for a pair of shorts. Longest ride on them was about 30 miles, so they never got a really long workout, but felt great, for the most part. Had a tight spot at the top of the thigh. A little more stretch would help. It has the best shammy I have ever used. Makes everything else I own feel cheap and crappy.
Never had bib shorts before, but the work good. Very comfortable.
If you can find some on sale definitely pick them up.
Would like to see the stretch of the Ultra with the Micro shammy.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $140.00

Purchased At:   Cyclepath

Similar Products Used:   Louis Garneau, Sugoi, Castelli

Bike Setup:   Kona Mokomoko

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