7iDP Covert Knee Pads - Review

May 14, 2015
by Mike Kazimer  
7iDP Covert pad review

When it comes to knee guards, there's a sea of options on the market these days, everything from barely-there, glorified knee warmers that help protect from minor abrasions, to offerings intended for downhill usage that employ thick layers of energy absorbing foam to minimize the carnage that can result from rag-dolling off the trail. 7iDP's (iDP stands for Intelligent Design Protection) Covert knee pads fall somewhere in the middle of that spectrum, but possess increased versatility thanks to the fact riders can customize the level of protection the pads provide by adding or removing one of the foam layers that reside inside the polyester / spandex sleeve.

There are a total of three layers that protect the knee – two pieces of foam, one that's slightly thicker and less dense than the other, and a pre-curved 2mm plastic cap that sits on top. The sleeve itself has an elastic cuff on the top and bottom, and uses a strip of silicone inside the top cuff to help keep the pads from slipping down. With all of the padding and plastic shell in place the pads exceed the CE EN 1621-1 standard which is used for motorcycle armor, although removing a layer or two does diminish the amount of protection. Available in sizes S, M, L, and XL, the Covert pads retail for $89.95 USD. Weight: 416 grams (pair, size M). 7protection.com


7iDP Covert pad review
The sleeve on the left houses two layers of foam and a plastic cap.
7iDP Covert pad review
A fully assembled view of the Covert pad's internals.



Pinkbike’s Take:
bigquotesWhen I first pulled the Coverts on I was struck by how differently the shaping of the foam makes them sit - the center of the pads contact the leg from the upper shin to above above the knee cap, but the sides stick out slightly rather than fully wrapping around the leg. Despite the unique shape, the pads remained unobtrusive out on the trail, and there wasn't any chafing or discomfort during extended rounds of pedaling. Even with all of the padding in place, a setup I used for more gravity oriented days when the extra bulk was worth the peace of mind it provided, the Coverts do a stellar job of fading into the background. They're there if needed, but are light and form fitting enough that they were never a hindrance. For longer pedal sessions I preferred to run them with the wider, more pliable foam layer combined with the plastic cap, removing the denser foam layer that usually sits in the middle. This gave them a more low profile fit, while still offering what I found to be enough protection for most situations. Temperatures were fairly mild for the majority of the test period, but the mesh on the back of the leg does seem to help keep things from getting too steamy, and it's easy enough to slide the pads down for longer stints of climbing.

Performing the role of a real life crash test dummy is something I try to avoid, but after only a few rides with the Covert pads I took a massive spill that involved me tumbling through the trees, narrowly missing a boulder, and breaking my thumb somewhere along the way. The good news? The pads didn't slip down in the slightest, keeping my knees free of the scrapes and bruises that ended up scattered about the rest of my body. It was an abrupt end to what was supposed to be an epic ride, but it certainly proved that the Covert pads could hold their own when it mattered. Fortunately, the rest of my rides with the Covert pads went much more smoothly, and they continued to perform without any issues. Overall, the Coverts are an excellent addition to 7iDP's line of protective apparel, a lightweight, versatile, and well constructed set of knee guards that work as intended.
- Mike Kazimer



57 Comments

  • + 5
 Have these, use them in the same way that mike describes, (skip the dense foam layer for trail rides) The fit improved drastically when i started folding the sleeve that sits below the protection pocket up and underneath the pad. It forces it to stay up on top of the calf. Happy with the fit now. BTW G-Forms don't do anything enduro-mtb.com/knieschoner-test-zwoelf-knieschoner-im-haertetest might as well wear a tube sock.
  • + 8
 G-Forms may not offer the same level of protection as these, but they're far from "not doing anything"… Ask my knees and they'll tell you. :-)
  • + 4
 G-Forms do exactly what they are designed to do. Will they survive a catastrophic crash? no, but my knees did and that is what is important. expecting a knee pad to be thin, light, cool and unobtrusive but lasting multiple falls is unrealistic.
  • + 1
 keen515, what are you talking about by the fit "improved drastically when i started folding the sleeve that sits below the protection pocket up and underneath the pad"? What did you do?
  • + 7
 I might give these a shot. I tried the leatt airflex pads and they suck.
  • + 2
 I have a pair of the Coverts as well and being able to swap the internal pads appealed to me. I use the large foam and hard plastic shell for trail rides as well as dh race runs. I haven't used them in full AZ summer, but a couple 90+ days and there were no hotter than my g-forms were. One crash so far in them, and they didn't move and did their job.
  • + 2
 I ride with these and the raceface charge. These offer substantially more protection than the charge but I am more of an XC guy and find that I usually go with the raceface charges. These are nice when I'm do more down than up and down.
  • + 4
 Really not loving this whole pads without any straps thing going on. I'll just stick stick with my trusty 661 Kyle Straits , best and most comfy pads ever made!!
  • - 1
 Absolutely!
  • + 1
 Same here. Only problem is I'm down to the last pair in my stockpile and can't seem to find anything to replace them with. Have tried most other brands (and 661 pads) and they just don't compare
  • + 1
 raceface ambush are very good and have straps - they never move
  • + 1
 Take a look at the Seven iDP Flex knee it will be up on our site in the next week, I believe that this will be a great option.
  • + 0
 Wait til you see the new 661 Rage pad - it takes everything that's great about the Kyle Strait, and makes it 10 times better.
  • + 1
 Its not hard to make a kyle strait pad better, its pretty outdated and that doesn't even pass CE either what is it with these brands fobbing people off with unsafe pads. Hopefully they have tested the rage to CE1621.
  • + 1
 hemlock88 its not a matter of being better or passing a standard.. to me comfort is everything, if i had two types of pads, one certified that was slightly less comfy then an other pair that wasnt certified and was extremely comfy ill pick the less certified one everytime.
  • + 1
 @hemlock88 The most recentl Kyle Strait replacement (Rage) is completely CE certified to CE-EN1621. I am not sure where you got that information from...
  • + 1
 @qman11 But surely if it isn't certified and you crash your likely to sustain a sever injury if you land on knees on rough terrain. There are some pretty comfy pads out there these days that do pass CE. There is a review in enduro mag on a lot of knee pads where they were all tested for impact comfort etc. Maybe I'm just paranoid after my crash but never again for me. Knees are valuable to me.

@timlake Thanks its good to know those pass CE I had a very bad crash 12 years ago and was wearing kyle straits which at the time did not pass the CE mark (These are what I was referring to) and were still being sold in europe, I am still living with the injury today so little bitter. I was told that had I been in a good CE approved pad the impact would have been reduced considerably and I may not have had these issues. As I said above hopefully they have tested to CE as in referring to the rage pad, Its great that it now passes as the standards are there for a reason. Hadn't looked at 661 in 12 years but may give them a look in possibly.
  • + 2
 @hemlock88 Sorry to hear about your injury. I don't know about the history of the Kyle Strait and when it was tested to CE standards, but the past 6 years have definitely been tested to EN1621 standards at least.

Almost all protection is CE certified these days as it's illegal to market an item as protection if it does not have CE certification.

Thanks!
  • + 1
 Bumping a year old review Wink I just got into DH riding and I had a set of Race Face Flank knee/shin pads.They were super comfy... But pretty hot running for trail rides and offered nothing in the way of back of leg protection from pedal bite. I had a couple bad gashes in the back of my leg last year and this year decided to change it up. I bought a set of these 7idp covert knee pads because of their modular configuration. I'm a little nervous over the lack of side of knee protection. Hopefully that doesn't become an issue. I'm also wearing a set of fuse shin guards (fuse-protection.com) which protect almost the whole way around your leg. Just from walking around in them, they work well with the covert knee pads. There's a little over lap however. I think for my usual light duty trail rides, I'll do as mike suggested and ride without the dense foam insert. Then when I go for a little DH action, put it all together.
  • + 1
 After one day of riding, I'm really not happy with how they fit. The area behind my knee gets chafed by the mesh material getting bunched up and rubbing against my skin as I pedal.
  • + 2
 I have them and really like the ability to adapt to various rides. Looking for a long time, finally found these. Can't compare much as I've never worn pads but we do some epic rides of 5k+ feet and no issue with the climbs.
  • + 1
 I have a set and at first I wasn't thrilled about the fit. They have a tendency to slide down if the lower elastic band isn't pulled up to sit under the actual pad. When they would slide down they would bunch up behind the knee and chafe. My first rides were also cold rides and so it seemed the gripper strips were ineffective in holding on to my thigh. Now that they are starting to break in and used in warmer weather they do seem to hold somewhat better. I was hoping to use these on almost all rides but will probably stick to the more risky rides due to the fit issues.
  • + 1
 @CEKSTOY, are you sure you have the correct size? It sounds like the pair you have might be a little too big - I haven't had any issues when them sliding down, but I could see how that would happen if I had the next size up.
  • + 1
 I have never had an issue with them sliding down either. I think you may have gotten the wrong size.
  • + 1
 I double checked to see if maybe I was in too large of a size and found my thighs are middle of the range for a large and my calves are on the top end for the medium. I'm wearing the mediums and found like Keen515 started that pulling up the lower elastic strap up under the actual pad helps keep the pads from sliding down. And sweat definitely helps them stick in place as well.
  • + 1
 Nice, like having 3 knee pads in one. That might convince me to change my IXS Daggers for something a little less bulky for xc!! I really like 7 protection they have produced some great products since they launched.
  • + 3
 I'm sorry, but those look like the 10$ kneepads I used to skateboard with as a kid
  • + 5
 So take them skateboarding then?
  • + 10
 I don't know about you, but cool graphics are more important than reasonably priced knee protection.
  • + 2
 Definitely an upgrade from the g forms and the stitching is holding up well so far.
  • + 2
 What's bad with the g-forms compared to these? I have the g-forms and wouldn't mind knowing haha
  • + 3
 G-forms are not CE-rated and don't offer the same sort of protection as other pads
  • + 1
 Damn. Hate finding out cons of of products after i've bought them.
  • + 1
 They might. But I got a pair and they are legit for being middle of the road and I definitely don't worry banging my knees up anymore
  • + 1
 I will never buy something that requires a handbook to pronounce....

Me: "Hi, do you carry the 7iDp4000x26c's?"

LBS Guy: "What?!"

Me: "Nevermind"
  • + 1
 Me: "Hi, do you carry the 7iDp4000x26c's?"

Well they are called 7protection. I didn't make the name up or how it looks but 7iDP stands for 7protection.

7protection.com ------- read the url.
  • + 3
 Had a pair small crash and ripped the pad away useless
  • + 10
 Contact me - this is a real surprise - these pads have been tested at great length by some seriously talented riders capable of giving great feedback - they were over 2 years in development. Honestly our guys crashed, crashed and crashed again... it maybe you have the wrong size, the feedback we received was that they stayed in place really well.We want you to have a good experience with our product, so please get in touch and we'll try and fix any issues you have.
  • + 1
 Fox Launch for me. Don't slip. Don't chafe. Not too hot. And have protected from many catastrophic crashes.
  • + 2
 my recommendation... race face ambush.
  • + 1
 Remove the inserts and Walaa! Enduro Pockets. Lol. I wear TLD KG5400s these look like something from Halo. Haha.
  • + 1
 I use the Control series knee and elbow...the BEST pads I have used...very comfortable...sleek...don't move.
  • + 2
 I've got the Control knee, also. I like 'em pretty well but probably a bit much for most of my trail rides. I'm wondering how these Coverts compare in terms of protection, because it seems like they'd be just as sturdy with all those layers but I thought they were supposed to be a bit lighter duty.
  • + 1
 Best line of mtb protection in the game right now, with soooo many quality options! (From the looks)
  • + 1
 im more comfortable using ION k sleeve....padding wise, but for DH use, i think not coz no hard shell, just soft padding
  • + 2
 They look pretty overt to me...
  • + 2
 Scott grenade pro 2 end of story!
  • + 1
 no side protection, wouldn't even consider these over my trail skins

wp.me/p4HYH0-M
  • + 1
 West Coast retailers can pick these up from www.cascadevelo.com now!
  • + 1
 How did he continue riding with a broken thumb? Minnaar style?
  • + 3
 @Zaeius - They screwed my thumb back together, but I still had to take a 4 week time out from mountain biking.
  • + 0
 i could be covert...ed to these
  • - 1
 rollerblading knee pads
  • - 2
 scooter knee pads
  • + 8
 I think if you are rollerblading aka fruit boots, the knee pads are there for another use.
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