I recently was lucky enough to test some of the new Troy Lee Designs / Shock Doctor gear and I was really impressed to say the least. I tested all of the gear in some pretty poor conditions (wet/muddy). I also crashed pretty hard on one of my runs wearing the gear too.
I tested the following gear:
-Elbow Guards EG 5500
-Elbow/Forearm Guards EG 5550
-Knee Guard KG 5400
-Shirt BP 5850-HW
-New chest protector (not in online catalog yet)
So first on the review is the EG 5500 Elbow Guards. The fit on them is pretty standard compared to other elbow guards in that they are a snug fit to help keep them in place (I usually do not ride with elbow guards because I usually find elbow guards to be too uncomfortable). When I first put them on they felt different then other elbow pads I have used in the past. They were a thinner profile, lightweight, and for sure more comfortable than any other elbow pads I have used before.
I rode all day with this set on and was pretty impressed that they stayed in place without being totally uncomfortable. For me that was a huge improvement to other pads I have tried in the past (661, rockgardn, etc). Another cool thing that all of these pads have is some sticky 'no-slip zones' to keep the pads in place. All of the knee and elbow pads use the X-Fit technology to keep the pads snug, but comfortable. Below are some more photos of the fit.
Inside of the pad, this is one of the 'no-slip zones':
From the front:
Next up are the EG 5550 Elbow/Forearm Guards. These are basically the same as the just elbow guards, but provide a lot more forearm protection. They breath great and stayed in place just as well as the elbow only guards. They were nice and comfortable and provide that extra protection for those of us who tend to scrape up their forearms when they stack. They also have the 'no-slip zones' that keep them in place.
Now onto the KG 5400 Knee Guards. These things are badass first off. BY FAR the lightest knee pads I have ever used. After riding with them all day I really didn't notice them. And when I took a pretty good digger, they did their job great. The pads on the knee split at the right area to where they do not restrict movement when your knee is bending to pedal. They stayed in place perfectly (even while crashing). These are super minimal (but still very protective) and are perfect race knee pads.
From the front (you can see where the pad on the knee splits right under the TLD logo):
From the back:
Next up is the BP 5850-HW under shirt. Ok, I am going to say this and be 100% serious, I think that everyone who rides and races downhill should own one of these. This shirt provides amazing coverage, breathes great, and is so comfortable, you totally forget you are wearing it. It has removable pads on the chest and back (for those who run Leatt braces), also removable pads on the shoulders in case you didn't want to run them for some reason. Seriously, I cannot even explain how rad this thing was. It didn't restrict movement at all. If you have any questions about it, please ask. Again, I honestly think anyone who rides/races DH should have one.
From the front:
From the back:
From the side:
Under a jersey:
And finally, the chest protector for those of you who like to have a little more protection for riding gnarly stuff. The chest protector is lightweight and totally does not restrict movement at all. It also breathes REALLY well for being a full on chest protector. One of the cool features for this is it has removable pieces to accommodate for a Leatt brace. It also has a slot in the back for the brace to fit into. This slot also helps keep the brace in place (so you don't need to run the straps). To give you an idea on how I tested this, I did a 30 minute climb on my DH bike just to get to the trail with the chest protector on and it wasn't too hot. Another cool thing is that it is very form fitting, so you can easily run it under a jersey too.
Full gear from the back (with Leatt):
From the front (with the extra piece removed to fit the Leatt):
From the back (with the extra piece removed to fit the Leatt):
I hope this review is helpful to you on picking your next pads. I honestly recommend all of these new products I tested. If you have any questions at all, please feel free to ask.