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Dura Ace vs Ultegra

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Dura Ace vs Ultegra

Old 03-31-16, 04:39 PM
  #1  
lightspree
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Dura Ace vs Ultegra

Trying to decide, thought some here might have some helpful feedback.

What is important to me is, primarily, function. Bling doesn't matter. Impressing others doesn't matter. Comparisons with others' bikes and componentry doesn't matter.

Fine workmanship matters, but is not exactly primary. Feel matters -- smoothness matters.

Money factors in -- I can afford the Dura Ace, but I don't like wasting money. If Dura Ace were slightly more, it wouldn't be an issue; but it is a lot more.

Durability matters. I am more familiar with Shimano XT and XTR componentry. XT can be more durable. XTR is lighter and more race-oriented. I am not familiar enough with Dura Ace vs Ultegra in these areas.

Thanks in advance for any helpful input.
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Old 03-31-16, 04:56 PM
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I'm sure others will chime in to disagree, but if you think of them like XT vs XTR, you're not too far off the mark.
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Old 03-31-16, 04:57 PM
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Ultegra....
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Old 03-31-16, 05:13 PM
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Chorus
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Old 03-31-16, 05:17 PM
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Originally Posted by lightspree View Post
Trying to decide, thought some here might have some helpful feedback.

What is important to me is, primarily, function. Bling doesn't matter. Impressing others doesn't matter. Comparisons with others' bikes and componentry doesn't matter.

Fine workmanship matters, but is not exactly primary. Feel matters -- smoothness matters.

Money factors in -- I can afford the Dura Ace, but I don't like wasting money. If Dura Ace were slightly more, it wouldn't be an issue; but it is a lot more.

Durability matters. I am more familiar with Shimano XT and XTR componentry. XT can be more durable. XTR is lighter and more race-oriented. I am not familiar enough with Dura Ace vs Ultegra in these areas.

Thanks in advance for any helpful input.
Between the two, I'd start with Ultegra, except, perhaps, for the wheels. My only DA component is a set of C24 clinchers.
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Old 03-31-16, 05:17 PM
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****.... because this will go south quickly
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Old 03-31-16, 05:36 PM
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Ultegra. Unless you're a weight weenie.
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Old 03-31-16, 05:36 PM
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Ultegra will probably do everything you need it to but I have never regretted buying premium stuff...
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Old 03-31-16, 05:39 PM
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I bought 6800 because most of the articles I read said it operated very close to 9000, but with a weight penalty that I didn't feel was material for my riding.
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Old 03-31-16, 05:39 PM
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If bling and weight don't matter you might as well go 105
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Old 03-31-16, 05:48 PM
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If you're going mechanical, Ultegra. If you're looking at electronic, wait for the Dura Ace refresh later this year (I'd still go with the Ultegra chainring/cassette though)IMO.
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Old 03-31-16, 05:53 PM
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ultegra, or save some serious money and go 5800, as the 105 is now 11spd. if you look closely a lot of "ultegra" and "DA" bikes use 105 cassettes and chains now to save a few bucks.
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Old 03-31-16, 06:02 PM
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when picking a group for my last build, I went Ultegra 10 because the crank was more aesthetically pleasing to me than the DA version.

but, I did go DA C24 for wheels.
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Old 03-31-16, 06:08 PM
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Originally Posted by patrickgm60 View Post
Between the two, I'd start with Ultegra, except, perhaps, for the wheels. My only DA component is a set of C24 clinchers.
I'd agree with this. Plus, saying so increases my post count by one. Because that's what matters most.
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Old 03-31-16, 06:26 PM
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Ultegra sounds like what you want. The DA finish is a bit nicer and it is a bit lighter, but the durability is about the same, or edge to Ultegra.
Best I know they are interchangeable. We have both sets and I have not had the need to swap them.
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Old 03-31-16, 06:41 PM
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Originally Posted by FLvector View Post
Ultegra. Unless you're a weight weenie.
+1.

Weight, bling, and cost are really the only appreciable differences between 9000 and 6800. I use Ultegra because the difference isn't worth the cost to me. If I was buying Di2 versions though, the weight difference might change my choice.
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Old 03-31-16, 06:55 PM
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Originally Posted by FLvector View Post
Ultegra. Unless you're a weight weenie.
105 unless you're a weight weenie
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Old 03-31-16, 07:06 PM
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I've got both. After more than four years the DA works a little better and feels a little more solid. The finish on DA looks new. But both function well.
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Old 03-31-16, 07:09 PM
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Originally Posted by rms13 View Post
105 unless you're a weight weenie
When I purchased my 6800 groupset, 5800 was still a year away. If I were buying now it would be hard to justify the higher cost of Ultegra.

I haven't done the math, but is the price to weight difference $1 per gram? That is the budget WeightWeenie measuring stick I go by.

I can justify $100 to cut 100g of weight.
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Old 03-31-16, 07:25 PM
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I posted DA held up slightly better for me. Then I remembered I used the Ultegra bike for two years at the Cheaspeake Bay in the salt air and some sand. So that probably accounts for the difference.
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Old 03-31-16, 07:46 PM
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Originally Posted by StanSeven View Post
I posted DA held up slightly better for me. Then I remembered I used the Ultegra bike for two years at the Cheaspeake Bay in the salt air and some sand. So that probably accounts for the difference.
I don't think that there is a notable difference in durability/longevity between Ultegra and Dura-Ace(other than cassettes), but I think XT might be a little more durable to mishaps than XTR.

Does that make sense?
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Old 03-31-16, 07:48 PM
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The folks at Art's Cyclery offered this and their picks for "the best value Shimano road components":

Rear Derailleur: 105 5800
Front Derailleur: Dura Ace 9000
Shifters/Brake Levers: Dura Ace 9001 or 105 5800 depending on budget
Cassette: Ultegra 6800
Chain: Ultegra 6800
Crankset: Ultegra 6800
Brakeset: 105 5800

So when I bought a new groupset I went all Ultegra except for shifters, where I coughed up the extra $100 for DA.

Art's Cyclery Blog » Shimano Road Components ? Where to Spend Your Money
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Old 03-31-16, 07:54 PM
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Originally Posted by GuitarBob View Post
The folks at Art's Cyclery offered this and their picks for "the best value Shimano road components":

Rear Derailleur: 105 5800
Front Derailleur: Dura Ace 9000
Shifters/Brake Levers: Dura Ace 9001 or 105 5800 depending on budget
Cassette: Ultegra 6800
Chain: Ultegra 6800
Crankset: Ultegra 6800
Brakeset: 105 5800

So when I bought a new groupset I went all Ultegra except for shifters, where I coughed up the extra $100 for DA.

Art's Cyclery Blog » Shimano Road Components ? Where to Spend Your Money
just curious, why the 9001 shifter over 6800.

Back with 6600 and 7800 shifters, the difference was obvious. What parameter influenced the 9001 upgrade?
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Old 03-31-16, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by noodle soup View Post
just curious, why the 9001 shifter over 6800.

Back with 6600 and 7800 shifters, the difference was obvious. What parameter influenced the 9001 upgrade?
Fair question -- if I had a compelling answer I would have included it in my original comment ;-)

Two things, really. First, I had read that materials were modestly better in the internals of the DA shifters, so they might be less likely to fail over the long term (who knows). Second, I had ridden 6800 so I knew front and rear shifting were excellent, though I thought the action of the shifters was ever so slightly imprecise (they work freaking great, don't get me wrong); I had hoped DA might be slightly better. Is it? Maybe. A little.
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Old 03-31-16, 08:13 PM
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Originally Posted by GuitarBob View Post
Fair question -- if I had a compelling answer I would have included it in my original comment ;-)

Two things, really. First, I had read that materials were modestly better in the internals of the DA shifters, so they might be less likely to fail over the long term (who knows). Second, I had ridden 6800 so I knew front and rear shifting were excellent, though I thought the action of the shifters was ever so slightly imprecise (they work freaking great, don't get me wrong); I had hoped DA might be slightly better. Is it? Maybe. A little.
A+ honest answer.

Both 6800 and 9001 work so well that it's very difficult to tell the difference. Longevity might be different, but with 25k miles on my 6800 shifters, I can't feel a difference in performance yet
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