Which Groupset to choose in today's madness

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
kode54
Posts: 1619
Joined: Tue May 23, 2006 9:39 pm

by kode54

Di2 over eTap. I hardly charge the Di2 battery. eTap, I feel like I'm constantly tending to the battery.
- Factor 02 Disc + DA9170 + Enve 4.5AR CK CL hubs
- Moots Vamoots Disc RSL Titanium + DA9170 + Enve 3.4AR CK CL hubs
- Parlee Altum + DA9150 + Enve SES 4.5 Ene carbon hubs
- Argonaut Spacebike 2.0 + DA9170 + Enve SES 5.6 DT Swiss 240 CL hubs

robeambro
Posts: 613
Joined: Sat Jul 07, 2018 6:21 pm

by robeambro

Since we're there.. It seems clear that most (but not all) people seem to prefer Di2 over eTap.
But what about Campag EPS? I was looking at the other thread "Which Groupset do you ride?" and it seems to me that while Mechanical Campagnolo is still quite popular, hardly anybody seems to choose EPS.

Is it because EPS doesn't have nice functionalities like Di2? Is it because of the price tag?

Edit: adding screenshot
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by Weenie


MyM3Coupe
Posts: 213
Joined: Thu Nov 24, 2016 10:32 pm

by MyM3Coupe

robeambro wrote:
Thu Feb 14, 2019 4:04 pm

Is it because EPS doesn't have nice functionalities like Di2? Is it because of the price tag?
I'd say it's about product support. In the US where I live, there are virtually no Campy "Pro Shops" within many, many miles. And bike shops? Nobody within a 1,000 miles sells/supports Campy, so you're on your own if you bought EPS and have an issue. Opposite is Shimano, where 95% of shops support it, so if you need product support it's there. I think Campy makes great stuff, but they are only surviving because of Europe where it's still pretty popular. In the US they are in a death spiral.

robeambro
Posts: 613
Joined: Sat Jul 07, 2018 6:21 pm

by robeambro

MyM3Coupe wrote:
Thu Feb 14, 2019 4:44 pm
robeambro wrote:
Thu Feb 14, 2019 4:04 pm

Is it because EPS doesn't have nice functionalities like Di2? Is it because of the price tag?
I'd say it's about product support. In the US where I live, there are virtually no Campy "Pro Shops" within many, many miles. And bike shops? Nobody within a 1,000 miles sells/supports Campy, so you're on your own if you bought EPS and have an issue. Opposite is Shimano, where 95% of shops support it, so if you need product support it's there. I think Campy makes great stuff, but they are only surviving because of Europe where it's still pretty popular. In the US they are in a death spiral.
That's so sad. I wonder whether their management understands that having a good product isn't enough if you don't have a large enough distribution channel. It may be that they do not have enough assets to fund a proper expansion outside of Europe :noidea:

I'm on a full Campagnolo crush right now - but I want to touch them hoods before seriously considering it for purchase! :mrgreen:

Bondurant
Posts: 107
Joined: Tue Mar 01, 2011 12:28 pm

by Bondurant

A death spiral? Or never that popular in the US in the first place? Would like to see the numbers if they are available.

robeambro
Posts: 613
Joined: Sat Jul 07, 2018 6:21 pm

by robeambro

Bondurant wrote:
Thu Feb 14, 2019 9:11 pm
A death spiral? Or never that popular in the US in the first place? Would like to see the numbers if they are available.
It's not a public company so nope.
I had a quick Google Search in Italian and it looks like in 2015 they announced they'd cut ~70 jobs (which isn't little, considering that they have ~750 total employees according to Wikipedia) in order to further delocalise production to Romania.

Other than that, don't think they're struggling too much as a company, their wheels are surely appreciated - plenty of entry to mid-level bikes are fitted with Fulcrum wheels..

EDIT: found this link, https://www.reportaziende.it/campagnolo ... ne_la_prec , where they mention that their sales at around ~ 100m EUR. Curiously enough, both their sales and net income appear to have dropped between 2016 and 2017 (but for net income this may depend on a myriad of factors, it's not necessarily a bad sign and shouldn't be taken out of context as I've done).

That said, no idea whether these figures are real.. Seems a bit small to me.

robertbb
Posts: 1051
Joined: Thu Jul 23, 2009 3:35 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

by robertbb

robeambro wrote:
Thu Feb 14, 2019 8:30 pm
MyM3Coupe wrote:
Thu Feb 14, 2019 4:44 pm
robeambro wrote:
Thu Feb 14, 2019 4:04 pm

Is it because EPS doesn't have nice functionalities like Di2? Is it because of the price tag?
I'd say it's about product support. In the US where I live, there are virtually no Campy "Pro Shops" within many, many miles. And bike shops? Nobody within a 1,000 miles sells/supports Campy, so you're on your own if you bought EPS and have an issue. Opposite is Shimano, where 95% of shops support it, so if you need product support it's there. I think Campy makes great stuff, but they are only surviving because of Europe where it's still pretty popular. In the US they are in a death spiral.
That's so sad. I wonder whether their management understands that having a good product isn't enough if you don't have a large enough distribution channel. It may be that they do not have enough assets to fund a proper expansion outside of Europe :noidea:

I'm on a full Campagnolo crush right now - but I want to touch them hoods before seriously considering it for purchase! :mrgreen:
You reckon you've got a crush now. Wait till you wrap your hands around those hoods and try all the different positions..... :oops: :P

Also, @MyM3Coupe, while at the Giro in 2016 I rented a few bikes and rode a lot in various parts of the country. 9 out of 10 locals were riding Shimano and shook their heads when I asked why not Campagnolo.

Campy is actually pretty popular in Japan. Grass is always greener. Exotic/different is always special.

robeambro
Posts: 613
Joined: Sat Jul 07, 2018 6:21 pm

by robeambro

robertbb wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 12:53 am
robeambro wrote:
Thu Feb 14, 2019 8:30 pm
MyM3Coupe wrote:
Thu Feb 14, 2019 4:44 pm
robeambro wrote:
Thu Feb 14, 2019 4:04 pm

Is it because EPS doesn't have nice functionalities like Di2? Is it because of the price tag?
I'd say it's about product support. In the US where I live, there are virtually no Campy "Pro Shops" within many, many miles. And bike shops? Nobody within a 1,000 miles sells/supports Campy, so you're on your own if you bought EPS and have an issue. Opposite is Shimano, where 95% of shops support it, so if you need product support it's there. I think Campy makes great stuff, but they are only surviving because of Europe where it's still pretty popular. In the US they are in a death spiral.
That's so sad. I wonder whether their management understands that having a good product isn't enough if you don't have a large enough distribution channel. It may be that they do not have enough assets to fund a proper expansion outside of Europe :noidea:

I'm on a full Campagnolo crush right now - but I want to touch them hoods before seriously considering it for purchase! :mrgreen:
You reckon you've got a crush now. Wait till you wrap your hands around those hoods and try all the different positions..... :oops: :P

Also, @MyM3Coupe, while at the Giro in 2016 I rented a few bikes and rode a lot in various parts of the country. 9 out of 10 locals were riding Shimano and shook their heads when I asked why not Campagnolo.

Campy is actually pretty popular in Japan. Grass is always greener. Exotic/different is always special.
Being Italian and also browsing Italian cycling forums, I can tell you that Italians are the most vocal critics against the brand. And in general, local bike shops there tend to push strongly Shimano (arguably they get a higher margin on their groupsets..)

We’ll see about the crush - in two weeks I will go to a bike fair and hopefully there will be plenty of touching and grabbing :mrgreen:

AJS914
Posts: 3485
Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:52 pm

by AJS914

I think the reasons are:

Campagnolo EPS is relatively (even very) expensive hence you see a lot of mechanical.

Shimano vs. Campagnolo vs. Etap - I don't think it's shops pushing Shimano or hating Campagnolo. It's product managers specing bikes with Shimano. It's the same with Etap - not of lot of bikes spec'd with Etap. Etap started off very expensive but prices fell. Now Etap AXS is hideously expensive.

ParisCarbon
Posts: 1402
Joined: Mon Feb 05, 2007 5:39 am
Location: Winnipeg Canada

by ParisCarbon

The EPS 12 speed announcement is coming shortly...Campagnolo SRL on facebook is now starting to push it...

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

by fromtrektocolnago

nothing really changes, etap or 12 speed options not withstanding. if you like the shimano system you'll stick with shimano, same is true for campy or sram
Colnago C-59 (Dura Ace)
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Mr.Gib
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Joined: Fri Mar 18, 2005 4:12 pm
Location: eh?

by Mr.Gib

@robeambro, re Campagnolo shifters/hoods, it's a mixed bag. If you are considering mechanical 11 speed, I can give you my impressions coming from heavy use of Sram and Shimano. I bought a Colnago so I had to have Campy on it.

My first reaction was extreme dislike. Putting the shifters in what seemed like the appropriate location on the bars (standard compact shape - Fizik 00 Bull) resulted in a "U" shaped trough in the transition from bar to hood. So my large hands would get jammed into the U which of course was uncomfortable. I also found that the edge of the rubber hoods was quite thick and tapered abruptly resulting in a ridge that create a pressure point on my palms. The other stand-out problem was the thumb button. Engaging the thumb button requires that you lift your palm off the hood slightly to engage it. So let me get this right.... your supposed to let go of handlebar to change grears? WTF? And the detente on the thumb button is fairly firm so it takes real talent to push that button hard enough to get a one gear upshift, but not so hard that it results in dropping down two of three cogs. And the final issue - those brake levers - while nothing feels or brakes better from the tops, they are a log way from the bars in the drops. No issue for my big hands, but smaller hands, a small woman, no chance.

BUT, there are solutions to some of these issues. By moving the shifters higher up on the bars it is possible to create a nice flat transion from bar to hood (sorry Calnago). Also by overlapping handlebar tape at the edge of the hoods, it is possible to completely eliminate the ridge. The net result is what I feel are the most comfortable hoods. My hands feel better during a ride and "fresher" after a long ride.

The issuse of the thumb button remains, but you get used to it. Also the further you move the shifters up the bars, the further away the lever get from the bar drops. Again, big hands no issue, small hands - fugetaboutit.

But the real test of a group is how much one likes riding it. With 4 nice bikes available to me, I must admit that despite its quirks, I prefer to ride my Campy equipped bike the most. There is joy in it's uniqueness and beauty. If these emotional factors of brand ownership resonate with you, riding a Campagnolo groupset can be a very pleasurable experience.

And if you decide to go electric, some of the issues cease to be a factor.
wheelsONfire wrote: When we ride disc brakes the whole deal of braking is just like a leaving a fart. It happens and then it's over. Nothing planned and nothing to get nervous for.

robeambro
Posts: 613
Joined: Sat Jul 07, 2018 6:21 pm

by robeambro

Mr.Gib wrote:
Fri Feb 15, 2019 6:22 pm
@robeambro, re Campagnolo shifters/hoods, it's a mixed bag. If you are considering mechanical 11 speed, I can give you my impressions coming from heavy use of Sram and Shimano. I bought a Colnago so I had to have Campy on it.

My first reaction was extreme dislike. Putting the shifters in what seemed like the appropriate location on the bars (standard compact shape - Fizik 00 Bull) resulted in a "U" shaped trough in the transition from bar to hood. So my large hands would get jammed into the U which of course was uncomfortable. I also found that the edge of the rubber hoods was quite thick and tapered abruptly resulting in a ridge that create a pressure point on my palms. The other stand-out problem was the thumb button. Engaging the thumb button requires that you lift your palm off the hood slightly to engage it. So let me get this right.... your supposed to let go of handlebar to change grears? WTF? And the detente on the thumb button is fairly firm so it takes real talent to push that button hard enough to get a one gear upshift, but not so hard that it results in dropping down two of three cogs. And the final issue - those brake levers - while nothing feels or brakes better from the tops, they are a log way from the bars in the drops. No issue for my big hands, but smaller hands, a small woman, no chance.

BUT, there are solutions to some of these issues. By moving the shifters higher up on the bars it is possible to create a nice flat transion from bar to hood (sorry Calnago). Also by overlapping handlebar tape at the edge of the hoods, it is possible to completely eliminate the ridge. The net result is what I feel are the most comfortable hoods. My hands feel better during a ride and "fresher" after a long ride.

The issuse of the thumb button remains, but you get used to it. Also the further you move the shifters up the bars, the further away the lever get from the bar drops. Again, big hands no issue, small hands - fugetaboutit.

But the real test of a group is how much one likes riding it. With 4 nice bikes available to me, I must admit that despite its quirks, I prefer to ride my Campy equipped bike the most. There is joy in it's uniqueness and beauty. If these emotional factors of brand ownership resonate with you, riding a Campagnolo groupset can be a very pleasurable experience.

And if you decide to go electric, some of the issues cease to be a factor.
Thanks! I didn't really know about the thumb button, I'd be curious to see a YouTube video where it is shown how to shift on a Campag.

My crush is still there, but I need to understand pricing.
When it comes to pricing, at least online, I can see Ultegra Di2 being ~ 1600 eur / 1500 gbp on various websites .. I can't seem to find any website stocking Record EPS 11sp Disc other than Wiggle, where it is listing at around 3800 eur / 4300 gbp. And it's Record, not SR. I mean. What? How? Why?
I would probably pay a bit of a premium vs Shimano, but that is extortionary. Or is there something wrong with Wiggle's pricing? I just need to understand, if I were to buy a Record EPS 11sp Disc as part of a frameset build, what would be the ballpark price.. If it's aligned with Wiggle, my crush dies here and now. :mrgreen:

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Calnago
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by Calnago

@Mr. Gib... no need to apologize for how you like to set up your shifters. That's a personal preference thing, like a saddle choice etc., I've set them up both ways... flat transition to the hoods, and a more classic (which I prefer) position. But you've got to have the right bars as well. Not all bars play well with all levers. I prefer Campy above all the rest, and I prefer mechanical over electronic. I don't need to let go of my bars to shift... in fact, my thumb always seems to be in the exact place ready to shift whenever my mind wishes. In one of these threads someone asked about choosing between Campy Chorus and Potenza. I don't know where that post is right now, so I wanted to say something regarding that. By all accounts that I've heard, Potenza is a very nice groupset but it doesn't have the multi shift capability of Chorus and above. To me, that is the biggest thing that separates the mechanical Campy (Chorus and above) from ALL the rest of the groups, mechanical and electric. I know I've said it a bunch of times, but I'll repeat it here. I am so "in tune" with the mechanical shifting of Campy that I can shift 1, 2, or 3 cogs at the rear with the same motion, just by thinking about it it seems. And, I can simultaneously shift the front, which is something I do very frequently when you're getting into the outer edges of the cassette, either side. And any of those shifts is as quick as a single shift. It's like playing a musical instrument, you just acquire a feel for it. Just as any note or chord is available to the accomplished musician (just by hearing it) the mechanical action of getting there is secondary, it just happens. The fingers/hands just go there without further thought.

And that is what Campy mechanical has over all the rest of the groups, mechanical or otherwise. It's a tactile sense of intuition if you will. Shimano is very light, and shifts one gear at at time. Not the same, but perfectly functional and if you prefer that, then fine. With Synchroshit and Semisynchroshit of Di2, you can automate some shifting situatioins for you, none of which I want "automated" as I like complete control all the time in any situation. You can also program it to shift one, two, or three cogs with a button push, but then it will always shift either one, two or three shifts with a button push. But what if you only want it to shift two cogs or one cog when it's programmed to shift three. You're not going to stop and reprogram it to do just that for that shift right then. With Campy mechanical (Chorus and above) every single option is always available to me, everything that all the Synchroshift options (I spelled it correctly this time on purpose) can do is always available to me. And it's lightning fast. Faster than any of the electric systems. I think between Di2 and EPS, they are both very good and work equally well. Little different setups but once done, they both work fine. Where electric excels is in situations where cable routings would make a smooth mechanical routing difficult at best and subpar at worst. And also for people with phsyical handicaps, such as having the use of only one hand being fully functional. You could program everything you need to do regarding shifting on a bicycle so that it can be done from one lever with one hand. That has to be a huge thing for a handicapped person who wants to ride a bicycle. But a lot of it still comes down to personal choice. And unfortunately, and this is more a commentary on finding a good mechanic, is that the quality of a good mechanical setup is much more dependent on the mechanic who sets it up than an electric drivetrain is. Electric is pretty darn easy, I'll give it that. But for my senses, I just prefer mechanical, and there's nothing to charge. I've said it before, but I'd hate to think the dilemma I'd have if all the bikes in my garage were electric. I'd need them all to be wireless charging, and my entire garage floor would need to be a charging mat. I don't want to have to always try to figure out which bike is charged and which isn't before I grab one and go for a ride. And when something does happen on a mechanical drivetrain, I'm pretty darned confident I'm going to be able to diagnose it immedately and fix it in not much more time. When something goes wrong with an electric setup, I'm often left scratching my head the same as the person who brought it to me is. Those electrons are elusive little buggers and it's not always easy to figure out where they're all going and what they're doing sometimes.

Campy levers on classic bars... the way I like 'em...
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by Weenie


robertbb
Posts: 1051
Joined: Thu Jul 23, 2009 3:35 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

by robertbb

Just as sitbone width, "anatomy" and overall position on the bike will determine what saddle is right for someone, so too will hand size, length of fingers and even the strength in those fingers determine what hoods and button arrangement are right. And this is entirely dependent on the handlebar size and shape too...

I actually searched around for a rental with Potenza, just so I could see how those dropped thumb levers felt. That was while I considered moving from mechanical Ultra shift to a Record EPS setup. I found that those Power Shift levers being angled down by 45degrees compared to Ultra Shift just totally threw the ergonomics off for me. I have no problem reaching the thumb paddle from the hoods or the drops on Ultra Shift, but with Power Shift it became easier from the drops and actually more difficult from the hoods (I actually had to change my grip on the hood to reach it which for me isn't necessary at all with Ultra Shift).

That, plus what Cal says above RE: control, solidified Ultra Shift mechanical groups as the ones that work best for me.

If there was only one thing I could change about those 11 speed groups it'd be the physical size of the rear derailleur. It looks gorgeous (of course), it's easy to set and works flawlessly but I wish it was similar in size and lived more "inboard" - similar to the Shimano shadow ones. First world problems :)

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