Darkside – SRAM vs. Shimano.
I love the Ultegra one, smooth, precise, feels expensive. But the difference is massive and I want to know how I could flog the SRAM equipped one, what are its strengths and weaknesses etc. None of the roadies I know here would even consider a non-Shimano stuff so they are clueless too.Posted 8 years agonjee20Subscriber
Ok, I dislike the levers but that's kinda irrelevant.
How's that irrelevant, that's the only part of the group you touch and the part which gives the group it's 'feel'. It's personal, I would always choose Dura Ace over Red, as I have too many issues with Red for a top end group, but the lower stuff seems perfectly good!Posted 8 years ago4ags4Member
Recently converted from Ultegra to new Sram Force (with Shimano cassette & chain) , and IMO the only thing better about Ultegra is the front shifting.Posted 8 years ago
Rear shifting speed is much the same but shifts are more positive, hand comfort/ergonomics when on the hoods (especially over longer rides) and braking are all better for me (with Sram).
I dislike the Rival's feel and shifting but it matters not. Why? I ride a singlespeed Puch, gears are for woosies 😉Posted 8 years ago
They both have a carbon fibre frame and forks, same wheels (Mavic Ksyrium SL), same bars, stems and posts with saddles. Just different groupsets.
Seems it's just another take on the same subject and if you're new you won't care.ribenaMember
i've got SRAM rival and i'm no roadie but it seems fine to me. Not quite as smooth a shimano 105 (though its improving with use), but i guess you an always stick a shimano cassette on there. Seems a lot lighter for the same cash (?).Posted 8 years ago
it all ends up worn out anyway so i've never worried about it that much.lapizeMember
I've only ever owned Shimano road kit, and it's always been fine, except I find the idea of squeezing in the brake lever to shift up a wee bit awkward, especially from the drops. I used Campag Centaur on a hire bike during the Summer and I prefer that shifter set up. SRAM doubletap shifting sounds possibly a better option still.
For a saving of 800 euros I would definitely consider giving SRAM a go over Ultegra.Posted 8 years agosolariderSubscriber
For an €800 difference, this is a no brainer. Ultegra simply isn't worth that much more. In fact you could buy an entire Ultegra groupset for that price difference! I can't help thinking that there must also be some spec differences elsewhere on the spec list. But you aren't quite comparing apples with apples.
If the frame and wheels are the same (the bits that really matter), and it fits you (the ultimately most important aspect of a road bike since you are fixed in the same position for longer than an MTB if it is your first road bike), then go for Rival. Ultegra is probably a bit nicer, but beyond that the question you are really asking is 'SRAM vs Shimano at any price level'. Red vs Dura Ace, Ultegra vs Force, 105 vs Rival, or any combination thereof comes down to the same comparisons. The main difference is which shifting you get on better with. The slickness is generally reckoned to be better with Shimano, but it ultimatelyt comes down to which method of shifting you prefer. Front changing is generally reckoned to favour Shimano. Other than than you can't trim the SRAM brakes to centre them, but you can with Shimano (quite a big niggle in practice). The SRAM chain is likely to have a split link which makes proper cleaning easier but might not be the case with Shimano. Having said that, new Ultegra is generally reckoned to be a great groupset.
Nevertheless, a simple answer to your question would be to go for Rival and do something more interesting with the €800 saving. Go on a biking holiday, bling up your mtb if you really want to spend it, or buy some seriously fast wheels for the Rival equipped road bike which will make much more of a difference.
And don't worry about the 'proper roadies'. SRAM has become widely accepted, and this comes from someone who has used Campagnolo for 25 years. It has been good enough to win the last few major tours (although I think that Contador's legs spinning those Red cranks may have had something to do with it too!)Posted 8 years agostoooMember
As mentioned above – shimano stuff seems much more expensive than SRAM can be had for just now – exchange rate stuff I think.
I've recently switched to a new Rival group after years on shimano 105 of varying models.
In terms of quality/market… Rival=105, Force=Ultegra, Red=Dura-Ace. Though actually quality and performance is a matter of opinion.
Shimano tends to be much lighter shifting. The levers feel bigger and they've got that nice bulbs bit to wrap your fingers around at the front/top of the levers… I always liked that.
The new Ultegra and DuraAce finally get the cables inside and have a flatter top section on the hoods… they feel comfier. SRAM allready had this.
I prefer the double tap functionality to Shimano's two levers approach. I miss the light action of shimano, but growing to love the SRAM positive shifting. You really know when you've changed.
Braking is better with SRAM, IMHO.
Once big comparison is weight. SRAM is lighter than equivalent Shimano groupo. in fact, Rival is over 100g lighter than Ultegra from memory.
I spent a long time mulling over SRAM vs Shimano when choosing my new groupset and in the the end, couldn't ignore the value for money you get with SRAM, so went with Rival.Posted 8 years agosolariderSubscriber
Hairychested. Not really sure what the point of your post is if you are trying to sell the bike professionally not buy it? The 'norm' seems to be to ask advice on a potential purchase in the (hopeful!) knowledge that the bike shop knows their stuff. If you can't sell a Rival bike for €800 less than an Ultegra one, you might need to question your career choice?! Surely that's partly what selling bikes is all about?
Sorry, I think this is my first ever 'pop' at another STW member, but for a bike salesman, this shouldn't be a hard sell. How would you sell a bike with XT VS SRAM X5? It's not that different a dilema.Posted 8 years ago
Solarider, if I knew anything about road bikes it'd be easier, I don't. Everybody looking at the bikes was asking me about the Rival groupset but I haven't a foggiest idea, not my cup of tea those skinny-tyred bikes.Posted 8 years ago
I normally don't involve myself in selling road bikes but if needed I have to. It is the only SRAM road bike in the shop, wrong size for me – too large, so it's impossible to test ride it properly.
I should've probably asked if the difference in price was anyhow justifiable. From the answers I gather it isn't.
BTW The most "experienced in subject of road bikes" shop locally is manned by guys who don't fit a rim tape into the wheel to ensure the punter comes back for another inner tube. Would you ask there?
Can you clarify who "they" are? I have customers that like Shimano, Sram and Campag, for different reasons, and different uses.
I recommend the best components for a given usage/customer preference, and try to strike a balance.Posted 8 years ago
I'm not a big fan of SRAM gears because they mix composites with metals in key stress areas. Which in certain conditions can lead to premature failure of the components inside of warranty periods, that are usually passed off as wear and tear.
Shimano and Campag kit in the same category seem to last much longer IME.
But in racing terms, where durability isn't a factor, SRAM kit can compete and win out over it's competitors in preformance and weight savings.
It all depends on the customer's needs.
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