How to detect fake AJ IVs (help us end the incessant posts)

Methodical Management

Staff member
Dec 8, 1999
On any given day, this forum hosts at least 2-3 posts from people who want to know if a pair of AJ IV are fake. Although we already HAVE a post on identifying fakes, some people find it confusing and others are simply too lazy to sift through it. We need an effective solution to help consumers and to reduce the repetitive topics that clog our forum.

I've decided that, beginning with this post, we will create a series of guides to help Jordan fans determine whether or not a shoe is fake for themselves, using the same criteria as the experts.

I need knowledgeable sneaker fans to help share their expertise and generate content for this and future guides. These guides will then be placed in an upcoming FAQ (fake-q?) forum for public reference.

When all is said and done, we're going to clean up this post and archive the information. If you contribute a picture, make sure it is YOUR picture. DO NOT copy pictures from other sites. When this guide is completed, we'll start creating the next guide - and I'm open to taking requests as to which shoe we should highlight next. Our first order of business, though, will be the Air Jordan IV.

Here's my contribution:



nice job, but on the real you would notice rigth away if some1 is rocking fakes.
I would say those are the big two, but those two are much less evident on the retro+, which is would be the only reason I see to post about fake, because my expertise is simply not that I could detect fake retro+ without the mesh to guage from
Great post. Nice and simple.

Hopefully this will stop all those "Fake or Real?" threads.
For those about to rock (their kicks)... salute you
The mesh doesn't always run completely parallel with the lace pair doesn't at least.

Also, the air holes which are visible through the air bubble window, are smaller on the least when compared to my size 11.5.
I understand you Meth , but personally I didn't remember there was a fake identifying post made , and that this one was stored in the archives ...

Whatever , the Jordan IV are the shoes missing to my jordan collection , despite I have the white/obsidian-caro retro . I really hope to get both 1999 Retros one day ( I think OGs even DS are really too old to get some ) , and I still hope for a real re-issue as it was done with the cement III or the white/blk-red II this month .

Here is the sum-up of Jordan IV details you have to check to know if it's a fake or not (hope someone will add pics ) :

. #1 : " Corners at the heel of a real pair [ between the nubuck and the plastic parts ] are curved and not sharp [ just behind the origin of the lace holder ] " .

. #2 : " The mesh [ or plastic web on the side panels ] runs parallel to the lace holder " and not vertical .

. #3 : " the sole on the back on the fakes goes outward at the heal of the shoe aligned with the back like a \ while the real pic shoes that the sole tucks back in at the heel, straight up and down like a | " .

. # 4 : " the front outside portion of the sole [ midsole portion next to your pinky toe - only portion of midsole at the front of the shoes , since the outsole gum goes up ] is too short on fakes, on real pairs it tapers off into the rubber more " .

. # 5 : " The rubber covering the mesh should be line up with the top of the panel, not the bottom " .

. # 6 : " Stitching looks bad, common on most fakes. Lines all over the shoe are not straight, again, common on fakes " .

. # 7 : "Butt of the shoe is too flat [ shadow of the back of the shoe is more like ) than like I , like your foot is done ] . Should have more contour there "

. # 8 : Air Jordan " Tag is positioned to high on inside of tongue ".

. # 9 : Flight Jordan " tag is too low on tongue "

. # 10 : " The lines between each area on the [ out- ]sole are too narrow. Also the edges of each area are more rounded " .

. # 11 : " In many places the sole is shaped very badly " .

Thanks to all those who analyzed and elaborated those comments . Much respect .

This is what I've posted on several different sites.

Here are some pictures of a fake pair of IV's. I stole these pics from an eBay auction. They are claimed to be size 13.


1- The rubber covering the mesh should be line up with the top of the panel, not the bottom.

2- Stitching looks bad, common on most fakes. Lines all over the shoe are not straight, again, common on fakes.

3- Foam sticks out way to far.

4- "Butt" of the shoe is too flat. Should have more contour there.

5- Shape angle on that corner. This is the easiest way to spot fakes. All of the fakes on ebay show this.

6- Tag is positioned to high on inside of tongue.


1- This tag is too low on tongue.

2- Very little detail on the sole. The "stars" on the toe of the sole don't mean anything anymore becasue the people making these have added them in. The rest of the sole almost looked bare. I had to resize these pics to get them to fit in ISS's galleries, so it can't be seen very well in here.

3- The lines between each area on the sole are too narrow. Also the edges of each area are more rounded.


1- Tag again, too low.

2- Better picture of the sharp angle.

3- In many places the sole is shaped very badly.

These sellers are now starting to sell white/cement IV's as well. They have the same characteristics as these.
the thing that saddens me about this post is that even though your helping people tell the difference between fakes and authentic IV's you're also doing variant makers a favor by telling them what they're doing wrong. >:

" This whole time, never cared what other katz were sportin/Talk s---, I'll hitchu with a chrome nine, and I ain't talkin about Jordans/ "
We don't say everything wrong with them. At least I don't. Just the most obvious differences.
These differences aren't much of a secret for anyone with access to a real pair of AJ IV. I'd have a hard time believing that varient makers wouldn't be able to figure these out on their own. We didn't have a guide post up to inform everyone about the lack of stars on the soles of some variants, and yet counterfeiters still managed to rectify that omission.

So, why keep these a secret from the people who need to learn about them the most - fans? Let's not be selfish with this information.

Because the people making these shoes are reading these sites. If we post everything wrong with fakes, they will know and fix them. Tag info, we started saying look at the tag info to spot fakes, they fixed that. We say look at curtain areas on a shoe, they start taking pics trying to cover those areas. In a couple of months, fake IV's will have the rubber covering the mesh facing the correct direction. We should give some info, but not everything.
We should give some info, but not everything

So then it starts all over again: They step up their game, so NT needs to point out NEW area's to look for, since they fixed the others.

So in the end, you need to tell every point to let people figuring out it's a fake and at same time, tell the makers how to perfect them.

Either way it's kinda a lose/lose situation.
TJP - The Jordan Palace

They step up there game no matter what. If they get the info from us or someplace else. We will always have to keep updating posts like this. There's no point in helping them by just giving away everything we know. If we keep some info away from them, there's a chance they wont notice it and fix it.
The point is: I reject the notion that these types of posts shouldn't exist.

The entire purpose of this information is to prevent consumers from being swindled into purchasing counterfeit merchandise. To hold back this type of information in fear that manufacturers will correct their errors simply prevents it from being useful in the first place. Counterfeiters will always try to imrpove their product. That's a given.

They're not creating counterfeits sight unseen, crafting them freehand without the aid of authentic products.
If we can tell the difference through simple side by side comparisons, certainly counterfeiters can easily do the same.

The only difference between now and the point where fakes will inveitably become more difficult to distinguish is that we have the capability of helping people NOW. Why let people continue to purchase the current generation of fakes when these products are so obviously flawed?

Further, the information that I've disclosed in this post is essentially common knowledge at this point. I'd rather help other Jordan consumers than selfishly squander information in the vain hope that it might continue to benefit a select few indefinitely, as opposed to helping a great many people immediately.

1st: Method, I'm not saying this post shouldn't exist. It IS a helpfull post.


If we keep some info away from them, there's a chance they wont notice it and fix it.

Now that is exactly the point. Keeping the smallest tiny details away from the makers, so they can't perfect them, also means that 90% of "normal" people can't tell the difference between an 100% authentic pair and a pair of fakes that looks 99% like the real deal.

So THAN you'll have to point out EVERY tiny detail so everyone, even the most "newbie" can tell the difference between OG and 99% OG looking, but fake.

At the same time this will tell the makers how to EXACTLY duplicate the real ones.

But than again, the only difference between real or fake will me made or not made by Nike. If they can duplicate them 100%, EXACTLY the same, are they fake then? Think about that. (yes there fake of course, but try seeing my point)
TJP - The Jordan Palace

The only thing dats real wit the IV's is the retro card
When I come back like Jordan, wearin the 4-5
It ain't to play games witchu-Jay-z
Double edged sword or not i will still come to this post to check if i ever cop some 4's, thanks meth and to the others who are trying to help us consumers, i would be hella pissed if i bought fakes....................again >:

damn fakes are freakin everywhere,
can't be too careful these days
Right now we give out enough information to help people. We point out the most obvious areas. Would you rather give out 75-80% of what we know and still be able to tell a fake, or give out 100% and in two months have fakes that can't be detected? Like I said before, the people that make these shoes read these sites. Why should we help them by pointing out everything thats wrong with the countereits they make?

There's nothing vain in what I do. Squandering the information would be putting all of it in an easy place for these people to use it against us.
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