Earlier in the year we reviewed dhb’s Aeron Seamless Base layer and stated that Wiggle’s in house brand dhb had raised the bar with the quality of their ‘performance’ range. Following that review, we wanted to see if the rest of the range could live up to our (now high) expectations – so we got ourselves some dhb Aeron Bib Shorts and gave them the ultimate test.
A comfortable pair of (bib) shorts are arguably the most important piece of clothing you need when cycling. dhb claim the dhb Aeron bib shorts offer maximum comfort for up to 5 hours in the saddle. This is ultimately down to the CyTech Elastic Interface Tour HP Series Air (chamois) pad. It’s multi-layered dense padding is wide and structured to allow better blood flow, whilst the internal foam is perforated to improve breathability and airflow.
The main fabric in the shorts is called MITI Grandfondo and uses MITITECH Power wrap knit technology. This is designed to create a close, compressive fit to support muscles – whilst remaining comfortable over a long distance. This is combined with ‘Interpower’ technology which provides wicking and moisture transfer. The result is a thicker-feel but pretty lightweight pair of bib shorts. Integrated at the bottom of the legs are an good size silicone gripper. Unusually, these only wrap around the outer-half of the legs but seems to work really. The shorts come in 5 colour options or rather the silicone grippers come in 5 colour options including black, white, orange, blue and red.
The mesh braces are comfortable enough – although they did feel a little thin in width over the shoulders. One feature that is nice though, is the fact that the mesh panel drops down to the base of the spine – for increased ventilation and body cooling.
We usually test products over a series of rides of varying distances – from shorter commutes to longer weekend rides of around 40-50 miles. Luckily for dhb, I managed to pick up a pair of the dhb Aeron bib shorts a few days before riding in a 100 mile charity ride. This give me a chance to give the shorts the ultimate test. First impressions of the shorts out of the packet was very good. The fabric felt expensive and the shorts looked and felt well made. I am 190cm and 96kg so tested size XXL which is the largest size dhb offer (size range is XS – XXL). To be honest, when it came to fitting I found the shorts a little on the snug side. Don’t get me wrong, these shorts where comfortable once in place but larger riders may find them a bit on the tight side.
On the bike the shorts performed brilliantly. They were comfortable from the outset and although providing a degree of compression, they were nonrestrictive. I was a little skeptical about the silicone leg grippers but they actually did their job very well. The shorts stayed in place and I don’t recall having to adjust or pull them down once during any of the test ride(s). The CyTech pad provides good comfort and seems to be well ventilated. My 100 mile test ride gave the Aeron shorts plenty of opportunity to let themselves down – but during the 5.5 hour ride they managed to stand up to everything in impressive style.
dhb Aeron Bib Shorts review conclusion
dhb have an impressive portfolio with some equally impressive products. The dhb Aeron bib shorts are definitely included in that statement. The shorts are well made and perform very well, whether riding 5 miles or 50 miles (or 100). The combination of a good quality pad, comfortable, technical fabric and mesh braces make for a premium pair of shorts. Whilst the inclusion of well thought-out details like the half-leg silicone grippers and the extended mesh back panel shows that someone has done their homework. Yes there are a couple little niggles but I think this is more from a personal point of view. Beware of sizing though. Historically I have found dhb clothing to be a good fit – but it seems that their higher end, performance range falls into the continental sizing bracket where everything seems to be at least one size smaller. From the all important price point, dhb sealed the deal for me with the fact dhb Aeron bib shorts have an RRP of £65.00 from Wiggle. Ok these aren’t cheap but if you are looking for a top performing, high level pair of bib shorts, these offer excellent value.
Well made, very good pad with some nice little features. Hard to fault such a good pair of shorts.