Formula vs Hope Brakes (and maybe Deore XT brakes)

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  • Formula vs Hope Brakes (and maybe Deore XT brakes)
  • Premier Icon spawnofyorkshire

    I haven’t used Hope or Formula but i have XT’s. They are a little bit better than SLX’s but by the sounds of it you’d still prefer Forumla’s over them if that’s your thing


    evans cycles got a good deal on the XT brakes ATM £76


    I have hopes and xt’s. if i had to choose one id choose hope, but xt’s are better value for money.

    Premier Icon bigjim

    I went from Formula Oro K24 to XT and the difference is huge, xt blow them out the water. I’m sure there isn’t as much between more recent formulas and the shimanos though. SLX is pretty much the same brake as XT so I don’t think you’ll find much difference there as I understand it. I’ve heard too many bad things about Hope so didn’t look down that road for long.


    I had Formula Oro’s for years and then went to Formula R1’s. Not that I had a problem with the Oro’s but the R1’s were a big improvement.

    My XT’s on the HT are about 2 year old and bought on a last season deal so probably 3 years old technology wise. The new XT’s have changed to the Ice Tech system. Has that made such a difference that I’ll see a big improvement over the SLX’s ?


    The newer style of xt’s are a lot better than the old ones, however I’d say that puts the on par with the power of the best other brakes. They are pretty grabby until you get used to them, but I live the feel and that (for me) they are fit and forget. Slx are just as good, but not quite as adjustable.


    I’ve been using Formula brakes on my FS bikes for years and (apart from the odd sticky piston) never had an issue with them, always been impressed.

    I run SLX brakes on my HT and whilst they’ve never let me down the Formula brakes out perform them by a country mile.

    I’m doing a new FS custom build and was heading towards the trusted Formula brakes but I love the build quality in everything Hope do and a lot of the rest of the finishing kit will be Hope but so far I’ve heard both good and bad reports of the Hope brakes.

    Anybody got an opinion or got experience of going from Formula to Hope or likewise on the 2013 Deore XT brakes ?



    Not many votes for the Hopes then ?!

    Premier Icon tenfoot

    I have Formula RX on one bike and some old Hope Minis on the other. The Hope brakes, although old, perform just as well as the Formulas and have been totally reliable.

    It doesn’t necessarily follow that new Hope brakes will be as good, I guess, but someone I ride with has 4 pot Hope brakes, and he’s very happy with them.


    Did a custom build alpine 160 with brand new hope tech v2s, sold them on within 6 months. Hope-less.

    Had formula r1 before and went back to them for a bit. Much better for me.

    New shimanos seem to be the way now though.

    I have avid xo’s currently and rate them.


    formulas all the way have them on 3 bikes
    tryed hope just not got the same power , but hopes have a lot more feel
    a mixture of both would be a perfect brake imho
    formula power with hope feel

    Over the last year I have been trying different brakes to try and find the best I prefer, so here is the lowdown
    1st set hope x2 2011 fantastic quality and adjustment but underpowered as I just kept on going up in rotor size to 203 on s cross country bike?
    2nd set of 2013 hope x2 race stealth again fantastic quality no adjustment but more powerful than the standard x2 with 160mm rotors BUT they made so much noise I got fed up
    3rd set Formula R1s with 180 rotors again very good quality (not as good as hope) good adjustment and extremely powerful with 180 rotors but just didn’t get on with lever shape and also way too much movement on lever
    4th and current set shimano XT with 160 ice tech rotors and finned pads BEST brakes ever for feel, power, adjustment, not as good build quality as hope or formula but they are cheaper

    So if I were you I’d try shimano you will not be disappointed!!!


    Hope’s every time. Really easy to rebuild and service if they need it, which they won’t. Loads of modulation and power and they look the nuts, plus its all British made.

    Premier Icon funkynick

    Just to wade in on the side of the Hopes here…

    I’ve ridden bikes with Shimano, Formula and Magura brakes before I bought a set of Hopes (M4 front, X2 rear) and I am not sure how they can be described as being under powered… I’ve managed to stop myself on some pretty steep alpine descents with relative ease (and only using one finger braking)…

    What I have found is that they have a completely different feel to other brakes I have used, in that they feel far more progressive. The Shimanos I have used feel very on/off compared to the Hopes, the Formulas/Maguras not quite so much, but the Hopes feel like they have almost endless amounts of power as they just seem to stop you faster the more you pull them… this hasn’t always been the case with the others!

    Before I bought them I was pondering over a set of XT’s as I am not sure you can beat the power for the price, or maybe a set of Formulas especially with the deals they have on their website, but what swayed it for me in the end, aside from the fact I liked the way they felt, was that I can get every single little piece of the Hope brakes as a spare from only a few (maybe a hundred) miles up the road… now Formula are okay with this, if you can find the parts for sale, often from Italy so I found, Magura the same if you can find the parts for sale… Shimano just seem to only want to sell you either a caliper or a complete lever assembly.

    So, I went for the Hopes, and love them!

    Oooops… I seem to have waffled.. I blame this very nice Sauv Blanc!


    hopes for the feel personally

    There is no MTB brake on the market that if I pull it as hard as I can it will not lock up both wheels so it is all about being able to control that
    Formulas seem very on and off to me as do Shimano , which also gives the impression they are more powerful, but I dount they are. I dont like them as much for that reason
    Three sets of Hopes and I have had one sticking piston on one brake – to be fair it had not been used for circa 6 months
    All spares available
    British company with excellent service and parts for years to come
    If only on price i would just get some Shimano ones though

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