The Value of Bike Reviews

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
RyanH
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by RyanH

When I switched over to 9100 this week, I was reminded how small changes in position can affect bike handling and the perception of the bike. I keep reading bike reviews where the reviewer makes a comment about how there was more stack or shorter reach than what they'd normally ride. Based on my experience, if my position is off by just a cm, my perception of the bike changes dramatically. How the hell can they provide accurate feedback if the bike isn't setup exactly for them?

To further elaborate on this, when I got the Crumpton, I had initially set it up with Sram eTap. I chose a stem length to get my desired saddle to hoods reach. What I didn't realize was that with the sram hoods being close to 2cm shorter reach than Shimano, my position in the drops was actually 2cm longer. Thus, when descending, my initial impression was that Crumpton understeered.. Basically, it felt like I was driving the bike from behind the saddle. Going to a shorter stem fixed the issue and completely changed my perception of the bike.

With that being said, how credible do you think bike magazine reviews are even if they aren't trying to be a paid advertisement?
Strava
Current Stable. The Snob Machine
The Ex's. LS Siena: 6.21kg | Parlee Z5 SLi: 5.9kg | LS Xicon: 5.76kg | C59: 5.7kg | Cervelo R5ca: 5.09kg | Fuji Altamira SE - 6.2kg | Scott Foil - 6.2kg | Evo - 5.18kg | LS Classic - 6.7kg | The Crumpton - 5.9kg

by Weenie


rpowell
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by rpowell

ryan, i hate to be the one to break it to you but there is no santa claus.

mattr
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by mattr

RyanH wrote:
Mon Dec 25, 2017 6:16 am
With that being said, how credible do you think bike magazine reviews are even if they aren't trying to be a paid advertisement?
Only thing you can trust is those dimensions and specs lifted directly from the manufacturers website.
And they can even cock that up, so i usually double check.......

fromtrektocolnago
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by fromtrektocolnago

the value of a bike review is only as good as its source. works that way for anything stock market research, wine reviews, restaurant reviews etc. read some great reviews about colnagos on washingmachinepost and some not so good ones on some other sites.
Colnago C-59 (Dura Ace)
Firefly(Ultegra)
Trek 5200(ultegra)

Marin
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by Marin

Anything in a review that describes the ride or handling is irrelevant IMO. I like reviews where there is scientific testing involved, or where new technical features are described.

But the usual "instant power transfer" and wheels that "spin up easily" stuff l can do without.

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TonyM
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by TonyM

I personally like the pictures in a review. Unfortunately most of them often also come from the manufacturers marketing department. So better if they have a short video. I don’t care that much for the rest (stiffer, feels comfortable, maintains the speed so easily etc..)

TurboKoo
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by TurboKoo

I mostly check pictures for bad engineering. Things like cable and Di2 routings have left me not buying SuperSix Evo and most Cervelos. I still find it strange how simple things can be so hard for engineers.
Scott Foil
Shimano 9150
Shimano FCR-9100-P
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fromtrektocolnago
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by fromtrektocolnago

i check for buzzwords and marketing terms, if i see too many i move on.
Colnago C-59 (Dura Ace)
Firefly(Ultegra)
Trek 5200(ultegra)

mattr
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by mattr

TurboKoo wrote:
Mon Dec 25, 2017 2:42 pm
I still find it strange how simple things can be so hard for engineers.
I suspect there are more stylists involved than engineers.... ;)

fromtrektocolnago
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by fromtrektocolnago

mattr wrote:
Mon Dec 25, 2017 3:55 pm
TurboKoo wrote:
Mon Dec 25, 2017 2:42 pm
I still find it strange how simple things can be so hard for engineers.
I suspect there are more stylists involved than engineers.... ;)
absolutely! could not agree more.
Colnago C-59 (Dura Ace)
Firefly(Ultegra)
Trek 5200(ultegra)

Hawkwood
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by Hawkwood

Marin wrote:
Mon Dec 25, 2017 11:08 am
Anything in a review that describes the ride or handling is irrelevant IMO. I like reviews where there is scientific testing involved, or where new technical features are described.

But the usual "instant power transfer" and wheels that "spin up easily" stuff l can do without.
"Instant power transfer" is a particular pet hate of mine. Still I don't think bike reviews have quite got down to the level of hi fi ones which is a relief.

fromtrektocolnago
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by fromtrektocolnago

so often they claim what they are reviewing is the bike, but it sounds like they are really reacting to the group set and wheels
Colnago C-59 (Dura Ace)
Firefly(Ultegra)
Trek 5200(ultegra)

ichobi
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by ichobi

So what are you guys looking for in a review?

I run cycling site and get to ride a LOT of bikes and i must admit i am bored riding and writing about them. A bike specced with light component and 60+ n/mm bb stiffness will have almost instant pedaling responsiveness. (reads: Most if not all the carbon bikes from reputable brands)

You can also have bikes that excel stiffness wise in bb and ht and still rides like poo. The numbers dont tell much unless they are working together as a unit. All in all there aren’t much to tell differentiating one racing bike from another.

Make no mistake each has their own characteristics but the differences are subtle and minor. It’s difficult to find adjective to describe them so I tend to write whats it like living with them, finding annoyances and such and report on those.

Each people will have different take depending on their bike fit, fitness, component choice, all highly influential on how they perceive the bike and thus render review rather useless.

Personally I read review to give justification on what i want to buy or looking at pictures finding what I like. It's silly but i think we all do it unless we can test ride said bike. (in some countries it's hard to demo bikes). I'd like to know what make you want to read bike review?

Can we make a more compelling useful format? I like what the gcn guy do - they don't review products. They use them (product placement?) or just talk about Pro's bike.
Last edited by ichobi on Mon Dec 25, 2017 9:42 pm, edited 2 times in total.

fromtrektocolnago
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Joined: Sat Dec 07, 2013 10:15 pm

by fromtrektocolnago

i think of reviews as creating a permission structure for people to buy the bike they would have anyway.
Colnago C-59 (Dura Ace)
Firefly(Ultegra)
Trek 5200(ultegra)

by Weenie


Marin
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Location: Vienna Austria

by Marin

ichobi wrote:
Mon Dec 25, 2017 7:18 pm
i am bored riding and writing about them
ichobi wrote:
Mon Dec 25, 2017 7:18 pm
almost instant pedaling responsiveness
There!!!!

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