I have had many people ask me about the difference between the Brian’s Optik and GNetik IV pads, so I made this video that should show off their differences and help you make a decision of which pad might work better for you.
Please remember that my Optik pads are of the FLY variety, the FLX pads will be softer than my pads are and would feel a bit closer to the GNetik IV than my Optiks do.
- Both pads come stock with a removable outer knee wing (my pads have a the knee wings moved outwards, and it is not removable on my Optik pads.
- Brian’s fantastic Optislide design and technology puts their Primo material on the sliding surface of the pad while also removing all nylon binding and flattening out the sliding surface completely. This feature makes the Brian’s Gnetik IV and Optik pads the best sliding pads I have ever worn.
- The thigh rise of both the Gnetik IV and Optik FLY pads are fairly similar in terms of stiffness, even with the lower knee break on the outer roll of the Gnetik pads the overall flex feels fairly similar to the Optik
- Brian’s pads now feature a bindingless face design on the pad, the only visible binding is along the boot break.
- Both pads feature a bindingless thigh rise.
- Both feature Brian’s unique mesh accents throughout the outer wings of the pads.
- Primo material in the boot channel for wear protection.
- Brian’s Optik have a flattened outer roll that sits slightly below the face of the pad and has no outer breaks. Brian’s GNetik IV has a more traditional square outer roll with a single outer break below the knee.
- Optik have Brian’s elastic Smart Strap toe ties while GNetik uses a Bungee Smart Strap system..
- Optik strapping consists of their Smart X-Strap coming from behind the calf and the knee block down to the inner wrap, with an outer strap connecting the Optislide wing to the outermost calf wing. A bootstrap, and finally a strap coming from the inside calf wing to the outer knee flap which acts as a quasi professor strap.
- GNetik IV strapping consists of a single thick strap from the knee wing down to either the outer calf wrap or the outer knee wrap (I use the knee wrap). A single thick connection point coming from two elastic straps coming from the Optislide inner calf wing. There is also a strap coming from the inner calf to the outer knee wing similar to the Opik but I removed this. Brian’s GNetik IV pads also come with a lower calf strap (that is honestly rarely used by users) and a boot strap.
- GNetik IV knee cradle is made of a soft nash material and a 3D shaped knee block, Optik consists of nylon throughout.
- Brian’s Optik have a calf pillow that helps seal the ice when your knee isn’t completely down, GNetik don’t have a pillow, but have a thicker inner calf wing for added comfort and to in a similar manner to the Optik calf pillow.
- Gnetik’s strapping leaves the pad to fit a bit looser than the Optik since the Optik Smart X-Strap sits closers to the calf.
- GNetik’s shin area is an soft nash material while Optik has Brian’s X-Static material.
- GNetik boot is softer, more padded and thicker than Optik. GNetik feels like it fits more around your skate (more traditional) compared to Optik which feels like the boot sits on top of the skate more.
- GNetik has a much softer boot compared to Optik FLY.
- Rebounds on the Optik are firmer and a bit more lively compared to the GNetik IVs.
Hopefully the video and the details here help distinguish what pads might be best for you. Both are solid pads and I feel like most goalies would be able to use both with ease. I find going back and forth between the two pads to be very easy.