The Starbury 1 and 2 are both pretty comfortable to wear right out of the box. The Starbury 1 definitely lacks the cushioning of the Starbury 2. To my knowledge neither of these sneakers uses any kind of cushioning technology. All the cushioning comes solely from the insole. The Starbury 1’s insole is very thin with an extra foam pad at the heel while the Starbury 2’s insole is much thicker and provides a much better feel. Right off the bat, I knew that the cushioning of the Starbury 1 was not going to cut it so I did replace the insole with a $10 performance insole that I purchased at Foot Action. I did this to make it a fair fight. In my honest opinion both of these shoes can have about as much cushioning as you want. As I mentioned before, there is no cushioning technology incorporated into the midsole so you can buy a $10 insole or a $40 insole and put as much cushioning into the shoe as you want. I definitely do not recommend playing in the stock insole of the Starbury 1. The Starbury 2’s cushioning, however, could be compared to almost any lower tier Nike, Adidas or Reebok basketball shoe.
The Starbury 1 definitely offers far better support than the Starbury 2. The 1 is obviously cut higher than the 2. The Starbury 2 almost feels like you are playing in a low top basketball shoe. It offers very little ankle support and the shoe does not offer a very good overall fit. It seems like you can tie the shoe as tight as you want, but you cannot lock down the forefoot area and keep your foot from sliding from side to side in the front of the shoe. During play, my heel was locked down and didn’t move, but there was a lot side to side movement in the forefoot area of the shoe. This got to be very bothersome during long periods of play. I guess this wouldn’t bother players with wider feet; as a matter of fact it might even be more reason for a player with wide feet to try out the Starbury 2. I found the Starbury 1 to be the total opposite of the Starbury 2. It offers great ankle support because of the higher cut and although the fit can’t be compared to those of other higher end shoes, it’s not bad for $14.98. It provides a great fit and there is very little sliding within the shoe. One complaint I had about the Starbury 1 in comparison to the 2 is that the material used for the inside lining around the ankle is very rough and caused my ankles to itch a lot which got to be very irritating. I recommend higher cut socks for the Starbury 1 just for that reason. Neither the Starbury 1 nor 2 offer any kind of arch support. To many players this isn’t a very big issue, but for me it is. There’s not much you can do about this except maybe buy a new insole that does offer a reasonable amount of arch support.
Both, the Starbury 1 and 2, held up great outdoors and indoors. They both have excellent tread patterns that provide great traction on hardwood and on asphalt. The Starbury 1 has a very generic, basic tread pattern while the Starbury 2’s is a bit more complex. Neither one outperforms the other in terms of traction. I guess it was just a design effect on the Starbury 2. I did find that the tread on the Starbury 1 does wear down a lot faster than any other shoe I have ever played in before. After my first wear, I could already see a substantial amount of the tread had already started to wear down. If you are playing indoors, this shouldn’t be too big of an issue.
In conclusion, I think both of these shoes are worth the $14.98 price tag. Even if you have to go out and buy an insole for the shoe, you are looking at spending a total of $25-$35 for a well put together shoe that will last you a reasonable amount of time. I am a big supporter of the Starbury line and what Marbury set out to accomplish when he started it. I feel that a lot of people have shunned away from the shoe and laughed it off simply because of the price tag. I would definitely recommend the shoe to people who don’t want to or can’t afford to pay the big bucks to get a decent pair of shoes to play ball in. It’s not a bad shoe for the price. One thing I do feel that Marbury needs to stop doing is claiming that the shoe uses “state of the art technology” and is the equivalent of other higher end shoes because it is not. The Starbury sneakers are available at any Steve and Barry’s location. Most of the time stock is plentiful, but there have been times when I walked into a store and had a hard time finding my size in a particular style or color. Unfortunately, Steve and Barry’s does not have an online shop, but you can find almost all the styles on ebay for a few bucks over retail. The Starbury 2 is still being released in new colorways, but here is a compiled list of the Starbury 1 and 2 that are available now:
*White/Red/Black (Big Ben Colorway)