S McBeanwrote a review of Assos T.cento_S7 Bib Shorts - Men's on June 14, 2016
Familiarity: I've used it several times
These are not one-star shorts. There have been enough changes to bring out the vitriol, though, so let's compare these S7/T.Centos to the S5/F1 Mille, and the old school F1 Mille. Besides Assos making bets in-house about how feminine they can make these colors and still get hundreds of dollars for them from us (I cringe at what's next--pink lace?), there are big differences, differences that matter on your longest rides.
The universally-loved S5s were, believe it or not, a controversial change from the old orange F1 Mille. The orange Cytech chamois was a classic and is still used by Rapha and Search & State. The orange pad still feels denser than either the S5 or the new S7, and is rougher than either of the new ones. The S7 pad is actually marginally thicker than the S5, and appears to be made similarly well and is the same size. It's safe to figure that the S7 chamois has the same durability and comfort as the S5, which is saying a lot. The big difference--the entire value of these shorts, really--is in the black, blank spot on the S7 chamois. There is a cutout so there is no pressure at all on the genital area. These are revolutionary in comfort, with no pad or pressure where it is harmful.
There have been some complaints about them fitting small. Now, I'm 6'5" / 190 and have been wearing "large" bibs from Assos forever. In Assos-land, "large" means "gangly," not "chubby." If you're comparing these to a Pearl Izumi large, it's going to be very different. Assos has always been like this, and frankly cyclists who ride so much that these short make financial sense are more likely to have the body shape Assos is aiming for--you're never going to stretch a pair of these over Axl Rose. Nevertheless, I don't find that these are materially different on the bike, but standing around they feel pretty small. Why? Let's review.
There doesn't seem to be a long-leg version like there was with the S5, so you're probably going to feel like these are a couple inches short, and that feels constraining. The leg opening size is the same on the S5 and S7. The thinner material is harder to get ahold of and adjust without pinching yourself, so it might feel tighter and more irritating until you get it all lined up. It seems to have less volume, but the measurements seem consistent from the S5 and S7.
The bib straps were probably a mistake. They are an unforgiving elastic strap similar to what a heart rate monitor strap might be made of. They have a lot less give than the old S5 straps, and there is just less material on the S7s. The picture I attached shows the shorts hanging from a closet bar, with another closet bar run through the two pairs of shorts. They were even to start, but the bar pulled the S5 shorts down more, indicating that the S5s have more give. So you seem to get less volume and less give on the upper half of these shorts, and it is less comfortable. There's a lot of tension in these straps and they definitely have more pull power than the S5 straps. I don't see why they made this change unless it was to save on production costs. I'll say that the chamois makes up for it, and you don't have these aggressive straps constantly squashing your junk because the chamois keeps the pressure off. I would still greatly prefer the old S5 straps with the new chamois, but the point is moot on the bike, where the straps seem more lined up and pulling up the back instead of the front. It works, somehow.
Over all, was it worth it? I think so; I mean, I won't go hit up the other sites to clean out their S5 inventory. The chamois is pretty incredible, and the other parts of it don't detract enough. Sure, I just paid $600 for two pairs of shorts, so I guess I'm committed now, but I think they have already been effective on long rides with relentless climbs.