Groupsets for the uninformed.

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

The sport is not elegant. It may have a very thin veneer of elegance, but percolating just beneath the surface, it is brutal, aggressive and sometimes violent. Accordingly, the choice of equipment must reflect that reality, too.

I don't disagree that the basics of any groupset is that it shift the gears and that most do that just fine. I think the question the OP was asking, is which does that the best, which requires some hair-splitting. 'Best' is a big word. To me, 'best' means 'best for racing'. To that end, I thing it is a dead heat between Campagnolo Record EPS and Shimano Di2.

When Di2 first came out, I secretly wanted it to fall flat on it's face. I freely admit to being a bit of a Luddite when it comes to equipment (I believed that Super Record is the pinnacle of groupsets...the 70's version!). I still prefer 'durable' over 'lightest' (I know, I know...). My mantra is 'you can't win if you can't finish...'. As the Teams have transitioned to Di2 themselves, however, I have ended-up on Di2 for the past several seasons and have completely changed my tune.

There is nothing like electronic shifting for racing. When your hands are so cold and wet that you can't even feel them anymore and your derraileur is crusted with ice and grit, the electronic groupsets will make short work of that. When you are way deep in the red and the split comes just in front of you (into a 25-knot block headwind, no doubt from a bumpy off-camber turn at the base of a descent or cresting 11%) and despreately claw for another gear, that is when the electronic group will prove it's worth.

by Weenie


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prendrefeu
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by prendrefeu

... and here we go....

:popcorn:
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ticou
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by ticou

Of course Cycling's tough we all know that, but to the viewing public it's elegant. Or elegant suffering if you like. Or Charasmatic elegant suffering..Bertie effortlessly honking the Alpe..

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Tinea Pedis
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by Tinea Pedis

prendrefeu wrote:... and here we go....

:popcorn:

Not at all kicked off by using us Aussies as 'ridiculous example of brand loyalty' at all, right?


Lets keep this informative. If it gets to school ground levels, there's only one result.


fwiw, I agree with Geoff's "It may have a very thin veneer of elegance, but percolating just beneath the surface, it is brutal, aggressive and sometimes violent". Anyone who has read The Rider will relate.

Not sure that means SRAM isn't up to the task, but it does summarise cycling rather nicely.

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prendrefeu
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by prendrefeu

Sorry TP, it was the first thing I could think of at the time where people fight over brands at an event to the point of fists and ambulances. It's Ford vs. Holden, not 'racer A vs. racer B' supporters. It's a bit different with sport teams - it's not like we see Arsenal fans battle it out with Chelsea because some people prefer to fly on Emirate Airlines over using Samsung phones, they battle it out for the team itself, not the brand sponsoring the team.

People getting into arguments over one team vs. another based on their riding style, ethics, whatever... ok
People getting into arguments over manufacturers that are on a bike? The only thing that comes to mind is Bathurst 1000. I'm sure there are other examples.

I'll look for search results for people who have beaten each other up or gotten into strong arguments over Android vs. iOS smartphones. Surely there's something there.

Somehow with all this tech people forget the very basic - and beautiful - premise of a bicycle: IT IS POWERED BY A PERSON. All the bike really need to do is function properly, and it doesn't matter what brand is on what bike in the end, or which brand is superior to another - it just has to work for the person riding the bike and fulfill their needs and desires, not yours.
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fdegrove
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by fdegrove

Hi,

I still prefer 'durable' over 'lightest' (I know, I know...). My mantra is 'you can't win if you can't finish


Fair enough. I don't think anno that 2013 any make of group would stop you from winning though.
And that's precisely why this discussion is so pointless.
There ain't no such thing as a bad groupset nowadays. They're all different and between the three available brands there's a good chance they cater for all of us clowns... :mrgreen:

From Kierkegaard to Sigmund Freud (insert your pet philosopher here), three brands of groupset makers cann't possible cater for all of the flavours of personalities out there so why even bring it up for discussion?

Bottom line is, if a groupset does what it needs to do and you like it, use it, buy it or hier it. Nobody cares.

And then came aesthetics, ergonomics, pride of ownership, perceived value, resale value and so on. IOW the subjective value(s).

Ciao, ;)
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Northoceanbeach
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by Northoceanbeach

Alright what I don't understand is this. If the answer is all groupsets shift and properly set up will help you win races, why is that not the answer to every thread on this board?

If someone asks "Help me find pedals" just say "get any, they are all good"

Help me find a shallow drop handlebar? "get any bar, they are all good, doesn't matter what they're made of"

So why is it ok to talk about pedals but not groupsets. Or bikes at all? If all groups properly set are good, then why bikes or anything? Can't this be said for absolutely everything?

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prendrefeu
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by prendrefeu

Well, that sort of is the answer to every question. :lol:

That is every question that isn't specific. You asked to rank the groupsets - and we did! They're ranked in this thread. Folks have also mentioned the differences between the levels. What we avoided doing is getting into the Shimano vs. Campagnolo vs. SRAM argument (thankfully). There certainly are still differences - both within a brand and between brands...

But, if you asked a more specific question, then people would give a specific answer - such as:

"I live in an area where shops mostly carry Campagnolo and I only have $x to spend, I ride in the mountains a lot, I tend to be rough with my equipment, what should I consider?"

or

"Can anyone recommend a drivetrain that I can mess around with but can still add 3rd party components to over time?"

or

"What's the difference between DuraAce 9000 and 7900? Will Ultegra be worth the difference? Budget is not an issue. Can I use a Sora FD and still be compatible?"

etc:.


As for your pedal/wheel examples, those are usually specific questions - knee issues, float, wheel availability, pricing, rider weight, riding type, etc:.
If someone asked for a 'general ranking' of all wheels... then... we'd end up with a few general lists within manufacturer's ranges, just as we did here.

:thumbup:
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allezkmiec
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by allezkmiec

Asking "Which groupset is best?" in a forum where there's a reasonably even split among people who use different levels of all three brands is just as apt to get you useable data as asking "Which food is best?" in a room full of omnivores.

None of the three brands in question make a "bad" groupset. Moreover, the top-shelf (and even second-shelf) groups from all three are all excellent, durable, lightweight collections of parts. They'll all work well, most likely for a long time. Apart from weight, which is the only real measurable metric at play in this discussion, everything else is just preference.

mattydubs
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by mattydubs

Geoff wrote:There is nothing like electronic shifting for racing. When your hands are so cold and wet that you can't even feel them anymore and your derraileur is crusted with ice and grit, the electronic groupsets will make short work of that. When you are way deep in the red and the split comes just in front of you (into a 25-knot block headwind, no doubt from a bumpy off-camber turn at the base of a descent or cresting 11%) and despreately claw for another gear, that is when the electronic group will prove it's worth.


Where are you racing that it's this cold? Granted, it's a wonderful image, but I don't know if that's the only concern one should have.

The one that shifts the best is the one that fits you the best. I used Shimano for years and have been won over by the lean nerdiness and mechanical simplicity of SRAM (I actually think SRAM is much more tunable and reliable, but YMMV). I also like their levers a bit better.

If it's between the top groups from all three, you need to try them all out. What are you doing? Are you racing? Are you shooting for bang for the buck? I think you need to be a wee bit more specific about your application as you're going to get wildly different and (of course) subjective answers.

Causidicus
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by Causidicus

Electronic shifting (and in particular auto trim) is better than Allah, and apparently Allah is all powerful.

SDP
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by SDP

so....shimano or campag?;-)

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fdegrove
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by fdegrove

Hi,

Where are you racing that it's this cold? Granted, it's a wonderful image, but I don't know if that's the only concern one should have.



Not Geoff but just imagine a cyclo-cross race during the winter season in Canada or Belgium or wherever temperatures drop to well below minus 10 degrees Celcius. Add humidity, gloves getting wet and so forth and I'm sure you can see the picture.

It's not just your fingers freezing, in extreme cases it will also be your eyes, your toes. IOW all of the body's venal extremities.

Cycling is an extreme sport, boxing is for wussies.... (just kidding about boxing, it is ranked, together with cycling, as a very tough expression of sports).

Ciao, ;)
Being a snob is an expensive hobby.

mattydubs
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by mattydubs

fdegrove wrote:Hi,

Where are you racing that it's this cold? Granted, it's a wonderful image, but I don't know if that's the only concern one should have.



Not Geoff but just imagine a cyclo-cross race during the winter season in Canada or Belgium or wherever temperatures drop to well below minus 10 degrees Celcius. Add humidity, gloves getting wet and so forth and I'm sure you can see the picture.

It's not just your fingers freezing, in extreme cases it will also be your eyes, your toes. IOW all of the body's venal extremities.

Cycling is an extreme sport, boxing is for wussies.... (just kidding about boxing, it is ranked, together with cycling, as a very tough expression of sports).

Ciao, ;)


Considering this question was posted to the "road" vs the "cx/touring" forum I arrogantly assumed that cx was not the OPs intended application. Silly me.

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prendrefeu
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by prendrefeu

allezkmiec wrote:Asking "Which groupset is best?" in a forum where there's a reasonably even split among people who use different levels of all three brands is just as apt to get you useable data as asking "Which food is best?" in a room full of omnivores.


Frozen bananas covered in dark chocolate and crushed almonds.

:podium:
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by Weenie


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