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  1. #1
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    2012 Cannondale Synapse Hi-Mod 2...what purpose does this bike have over a Super Six?

    Hi there,

    I'm brand new to this site...and almost brand new to cycling. Can someone explain how cannondale deems their "Road Elite" models vs. "Performance Models?" I know the Synapse falls under the Performance Model line, but I guess I don't quite understand who the market is for that bike. Is a "cannondale performance bike" less aggressive and is slighty more upright?

    Does a synapse compare to a specialized roubaix, whereas a Super Six compares to a Specialized Tarmac.

    This past November, I rented my first performance bike in San Fran and had one of the greatest days ever. It was unbelievable and opened my eyes to cycling. The bike they rented to me was a Specialized Roubaix, but I am not quite sure of the model). But I assume 70 miles was too much, as my lower back was a mess and I couldn't move a week later. Obviously I over did it, and certainly wasn't conditioned. Though I am an avid runner, I can see that my core needs major strengthening to withstand this type of use .

    I've decided to purchase a quality road bike this month, and almost had a chance at a 2102 Super Six Ultrega di2. I now may have a chance at a 2012 Synapse Hi-Mod 2, but I don't understand the difference in each bike's overall purpose. Outside from some parts varying in from each model, especially when one is Shimano and the other SRAM red, I am thinking that the frame and the geometry of the design must be different for a reason. And that someone would buy one over the other for some specific reasons or what they plan to do.

    If the Synapse (like I believe the Roubaix is) is slightly less aggressive, and slightly more upright....maybe I fall in more of the Performance Side of bikes with Cannondale. That's assuming that either bike are exceptional, and that I am not giving up quality or features from one to another. If anyone has any input on what type of cyclist buys one over the other, it would be extremely appreciated.

    Thanks so much....John

  2. #2
    Senior Member Munk69's Avatar
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    You hit the nail on the head. The Synapse is going to be more relaxed than the Super Six. Sounds like it the kind of bike you want to look at.

    Good Luck!
    Right!

  3. #3
    Bike ≠ Car ≠ Ped. BarracksSi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jpersonette11 View Post
    Does a synapse compare to a specialized roubaix, whereas a Super Six compares to a Specialized Tarmac.
    That's exactly how I see them, and that's how they're marketed, too. I'd put bikes like Look's 566 in that category with the Synapse and Roubaix, too. Trek's new Domane is another, and BMC premiered a similar bike called the GF01 at this year's Paris-Roubaix race.

    What I find interesting is that not all road bikes with relaxed geometry have any other "relaxing" features like these that you and I have mentioned. Flexible, buzz-absorbing frame segments and clearances for wider tires count for quite a bit.

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    Bike ≠ Car ≠ Ped. BarracksSi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jpersonette11 View Post
    If the Synapse (like I believe the Roubaix is) is slightly less aggressive, and slightly more upright....maybe I fall in more of the Performance Side of bikes with Cannondale. That's assuming that either bike are exceptional, and that I am not giving up quality or features from one to another. If anyone has any input on what type of cyclist buys one over the other, it would be extremely appreciated.
    Ah, yes --

    I'd call a Tarmac/SuperSix a stripped sports car while a Roubaix/Synapse is a performance GT coupe. Both are fast and will get you where you want to go as quickly as is legally sane, but the GT will still have air conditioning, carpeting, and a nice radio.

    I bought a CAAD8 back when it was still a race-geometry bike, choosing it over an alloy Synapse because I thought I wanted a sharper-feeling ride. It was a rocket, handling anything my pitifully newbie self could throw at it... but as the months passed, I started to feel that I would've been having a nicer time on a plusher bike.

    My next road bike will certainly be more comfort-oriented.

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    At the price point you're looking at, you really should take your time and make sure you understand what the differences between these two types of bikes both "on paper" (geometry and stated purpose) AND how they feel to you personally. You may really like the more aggressive type frame or the more relaxed frame. BOTH will be very high quality, it's not like one is inherently slower or less quality than the other. In fact, if your body and preferences point toward the Synapse type bike, you may actually be faster, longer because you're more comfortable. If your body and riding preferences point toward the Super Six type frame, vice versa.

    A top of the line CF or Aluminum relaxed bike with top quality wheels, tires and components will not be lacking in general performance, except maybe for the most aggressive racers. But you might be more comfortable and happier w/ the more aggressive frame.

    I'm faster on my high end Felt Z than I was on my full-race kind of Cannondale (CAAD7). I'm more comfortable and therefore ride faster and longer.

    Just as a point of reference, most of the well known brands have similar options. Specialized (Tarmac vx. Roubaix), Cannondale as you know, Giant, Trek (can't remeber how they name it, but they have it), Felt F series vs Z series, etc. etc.

    Again, you're looking at really getting into it - take your time. Maybe find a really some racy bike syou can rent or at least ride for a minimum of 30-60 minutes, and do the same with at least a few of the more relaxed frames.

  6. #6
    Professional Fuss-Budget Bacciagalupe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jpersonette11 View Post
    ....I assume 70 miles was too much, as my lower back was a mess and I couldn't move a week later. Obviously I over did it, and certainly wasn't conditioned. Though I am an avid runner, I can see that my core needs major strengthening to withstand this type of use.
    Yeah, 70 right off the bat is too much. Your aerobic system is pretty well prepared, but running and cycling use very different sets of muscles.


    Quote Originally Posted by jpersonette11
    I've decided to purchase a quality road bike this month, and almost had a chance at a 2102 Super Six Ultrega di2....
    Keeping in mind that your budget is your own business:

    I don't see a reason to spend that much cash on your first bike -- especially since you don't really know yet the differences between bikes. $1500 will get you a top-notch aluminum bike, with very similar ride qualities to a carbon bike. You certainly aren't going to ride three times as fast on a $5000 bike as on a $1500 bike -- in fact, I'd doubt there is much performance difference at all.

    Unlike running, cycling also requires some specialty items whose costs add up: bike-specific clothing, repair gear, GPS-enabled cyclometers, helmet, professional fitting, bike maintenance etc etc. I.e. the setup costs will be higher than you might expect.

    And of course, if you really get into cycling, you're likely going to want a second bike. Use the primary bike most of the time, and your backup bike for bad weather, commuting, if the primary is out of service etc. So when you're sure that you are into cycling, and understand bikes and ride characteristics well enough that it makes sense to drop $5000 on a bike, the $1500 bike will become your backup.

  7. #7
    Bike ≠ Car ≠ Ped. BarracksSi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
    I don't see a reason to spend that much cash on your first bike -- especially since you don't really know yet the differences between bikes.
    I mostly agree with this statement, but I want to say exactly why --

    Some people take it as "you don't deserve a nice, expensive bike." What it really means is that, more often than not, someone's first good bike is really just to decide what they want in their second or third bike.

    A bike isn't the same as other things that people allow between their legs. You're not bound for life with your first bike.

  8. #8
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    If you have the money and want the bike, then get the bike. I'd suggest test riding a bunch of different ones (and not just around the shop either, see if you can find a demo day or something where you can go for an hour or more).

    Another swell idea would be to pick up a bike on craigs list - people buy nice bikes all the time and then never ride them. Ride that for a year and when you get to the point where you really know what you like, THEN spend an unreasonable amount of money on a new bike.

    One other really expensive item that people like upgrading are the wheels (which you can take with you when you upgrade bikes) so as Bacciagalupe mentioned, leave room in your budget for all the extras you'll want.

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