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Colnago C60 or start with something lower down the scale?

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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Colnago C60 or start with something lower down the scale?

Old 02-18-17, 07:41 AM
  #1  
robbo400
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Colnago C60 or start with something lower down the scale?

Hi all,

I've not ridden a bike for over 10 years and have decided that I want to get back into it at a nice level. It is part of my regime to get fit again, having already lost 10kg but still being 12kg over my ideal weight.

I have just had a £5k bonus from work and had intended making 3 purchases: a decent watch, a hybrid bike which I can just jump on to go to the shops etc and a good road bike.

The last road bike I had was a beautiful De Rosa Dual but, alas, I am over the weight limit for the bike. Comfort will be a priority but I'd love to have the same responsive acceleration that my De Rosa has. I thought I'd have to forgo the responsiveness for comfort which is the sensible thing to do. At 53, I am too old to get back into any sort of competition and realistically I want to work up to century rides and doubt I'll progress beyond that.

I had been thinking about either a carbon or titanium frame and was looking online at Boardman SLR Endurance and Kinesis Granfondo Ti respectively. Then today (on vacation in France) I went into a shop stocking Passoni, Colnago, Pinarello, De Rosa, Bianchi and Wilier - wow! Chatting to the guy, who knew I was not buying, he told me that the Colnago C60 had the comfort, speed, stability and durability in line with what I wanted. I spoke to a few guys of my age in the shop who had all returned to cycling in the last 10 years and all owned C40s, 59s and 60s.

The bug really bit when I rung a guy who specialises in Colnago in the UK who can do me the C60 frame, Chorus groupset and Ambrosio Excellence rims for under £5k. Am I being ridiculous in spending all my money on this as it's way beyond what I need and my performance level and look at a bike around half the price (as I'd intended and get a watch and hybrid) or should I go for it?

Thanks
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Old 02-18-17, 08:06 AM
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I think this is a question we can't answer for you, unfortunately. Personally I'd never spend any money on a watch, so that's the easy part. I like the idea of a casual bike to run errands, because that would allow you to incorporate cycling into your day to day routine beyond just training rides a few times a week, and that can help you lose weight faster, plus it's eco friendly and such.

For the actual road bike, my only advice is to not fixate on one halo bike like the C60. Keep an open mind and test ride a bunch. You will get a feel for what you can get for a given price point and will be able to decide for yourself whether you should jump straight into the C60 or maybe end up with something a bit less pricey.
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Old 02-18-17, 09:23 AM
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I would imagine there's a large number of bikes that fit your criteria. Bianchi Infinito and Intenso come to mind. Trek Emonda or a new Domane.

Here's another option, buy a good bike for around 1500, if you love riding then buy your dream bike. You can always sell the first bike, or use it for bad weather.

OK, so that was the sensible suggestion. Colnago bikes are simply gorgeous. At their price there's a lot of options though, from custom Ti to high end carbon.
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Old 02-18-17, 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by robbo400 View Post
Hi all,

I've not ridden a bike for over 10 years and have decided that I want to get back into it at a nice level. It is part of my regime to get fit again, having already lost 10kg but still being 12kg over my ideal weight.

I have just had a £5k bonus from work and had intended making 3 purchases: a decent watch, a hybrid bike which I can just jump on to go to the shops etc and a good road bike.

The last road bike I had was a beautiful De Rosa Dual but, alas, I am over the weight limit for the bike. Comfort will be a priority but I'd love to have the same responsive acceleration that my De Rosa has. I thought I'd have to forgo the responsiveness for comfort which is the sensible thing to do. At 53, I am too old to get back into any sort of competition and realistically I want to work up to century rides and doubt I'll progress beyond that.

I had been thinking about either a carbon or titanium frame and was looking online at Boardman SLR Endurance and Kinesis Granfondo Ti respectively. Then today (on vacation in France) I went into a shop stocking Passoni, Colnago, Pinarello, De Rosa, Bianchi and Wilier - wow! Chatting to the guy, who knew I was not buying, he told me that the Colnago C60 had the comfort, speed, stability and durability in line with what I wanted. I spoke to a few guys of my age in the shop who had all returned to cycling in the last 10 years and all owned C40s, 59s and 60s.

The bug really bit when I rung a guy who specialises in Colnago in the UK who can do me the C60 frame, Chorus groupset and Ambrosio Excellence rims for under £5k. Am I being ridiculous in spending all my money on this as it's way beyond what I need and my performance level and look at a bike around half the price (as I'd intended and get a watch and hybrid) or should I go for it?

Thanks
Mate, is that specialist in the UK the famed Mike Perry aka Maestro?

If it is him, I would highly recommend him. I am in California but I am willing to deal with someone across the Pond who is as knowledgeable, engaged and fair as Mister Perry is. Through Mike I have expanded my knowledge of all things cycling. He is a good person to know. Additionally, I don't think that there is anyone who has better Colnago prices than Mike does. Buying from Mike is a complete "experience." I highly recommend him.

As to your choice of bikes, that is really up to you and what you covet in a bike. Almost all of the bikes suggested here are good, even great bikes.

The C60, however, rides on a class all of its own. I can cite all the reasons why I chose Colnagos over other bikes. I don't want to waste others time reading my paean to Ernesto and his bikes. Besides, as you will soon learn, in this forum anytime anyone writes to praise a product, 100 other writers rise up to criticize your choice and extoll the virtues of their own choices. I won't play that game. But if you are interested in more details, send me a PM and I will answer you there.

I will only say this though. Own and Ride a C60 and you will never want to ride another bike. (BTW, I have owned and ridden many other bikes.)

Here is a short article, from FORBES magazine praising the C60:

Forbes Welcome

Last edited by eja_ bottecchia; 04-04-17 at 10:35 PM.
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Old 02-18-17, 10:16 AM
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I say go for it.
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Old 02-18-17, 10:34 AM
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When some people covet a certain product, buying a "lesser" product, but one that is still of good quality, is enough to satisfy their needs. For others, however, the satisfaction will be short-lived and their desire for their dream product will gnaw away at them until they finally give in and buy it.

You know yourself better that we do - are you the kind of person that'll end up buying twice if you "short" yourself the first time around? Are you the kind of person that has jumped in over their head and regretted it later? Your needs could easily be addressed by any number of bikes at far lower prices, but an honest assessment of your own personality is going to be the most important part of the decision.
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Old 02-18-17, 10:40 AM
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I never end up regretting spending "too much" on something I really want.
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Old 02-18-17, 10:51 AM
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At the risk of sounding like a millenial hipster (of which I'm neither): you only live once. Get the Colnago.

Just make sure you're also budgeting for a professional fitting from someone who really knows what they're doing. Being comfortable on the bike, in my opinion, is 70% fit, 15% tires & tire pressure, 10% quality touch points (which should be part of the fitting), and 5% frame choice. You can have the best frame money can buy, but if your fit is crap, you'll feel like crap.
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Old 02-18-17, 11:19 AM
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FYI you asked in the road forums, we're the worst sort of enablers.
Responses will roughly boil down to:

Response 1: $5k for a bike! Awesome! Go for it!

Response 2: No one should ever spend more than $$ on a bike. Buy a used steel bike.
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Old 02-18-17, 12:08 PM
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It's £5k.
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Old 02-18-17, 12:24 PM
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Originally Posted by mpath View Post
It's £5k.

Or $6,250.00 USD
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Old 02-18-17, 12:48 PM
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Originally Posted by robbo400 View Post
I've not ridden a bike for over 10 years and have decided that I want to get back into it at a nice level. It is part of my regime to get fit again, having already lost 10kg but still being 12kg over my ideal weight.

The last road bike I had was a beautiful De Rosa Dual but, alas, I am over the weight limit for the bike. Comfort will be a priority but I'd love to have the same responsive acceleration that my De Rosa has. I thought I'd have to forgo the responsiveness for comfort which is the sensible thing to do. At 53, I am too old to get back into any sort of competition and realistically I want to work up to century rides and doubt I'll progress beyond that.
What is the actual weight? I'm surprised you would be "over the limit" for the De Rosa, but not the Colnago.

Do you still have the De Rosa?

Why did you stop riding? How certain are you that the fancy Colnago won't get ridden once, then get hung in the back of the garage?

If it was me, I'd buy or build, maybe a $500 to $1000 used bike. Get the fit and comfort down. Get some time back on the road. Join some clubs if you wish. Lose a few kilos???

Then once you are ready, go out and buy or build up your dream bike (which could be a different dream). Then, either save your beater as a commuter and foul weather bike (I heard it rains in England), or sell it to help finance the new bike.

If your weight is, say over 200 or 250 lbs (100 Kilos?), you still can ride a "road bike", but you may make some choices like 28mm or 32mm tires, and 32 or 36 spoke wheels. And that may also impact your frame choice as not all of them support the wider tires.

Colnago has made some Cross bikes, and there may be some heavier duty frames to fit the larger tires.

Several "comfort" bikes out there too. The Specialized Roubaix is built for comfort. And other manufacturers are following suit. Larger tires are becoming more common, and also a comfort feature. And, with high quality tires/casings, the efficiency difference between narrow high quality and wide high quality tires is minimal.
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Old 02-18-17, 02:24 PM
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Learn from my mistakes. While this example doesn't apply 'directly' to bicycles, it does.
A few years ago I went back to motorcycling to finally get my license that I had been wanting for many years. I've been a huge Ducati fan all my life and I thought, one day I'm going to get my license and buy that Ducati I always dreamed of. Well, I got the license, fell in love with motorcycles all over again, but I didn't get the Ducati. I went with a Suzuki to save money and thought "it's similar, so, it's fine". But it wasn't. Every time I rode that bike I wanted that Ducati more and more and more until I eventually sold the darn thing for a loss and bought the Ducati.
I think you get the point of my story. If you don't get the Colnago, every time you ride whichever bike you DO get, you'll want that Colnago more and more and it'll eat away at you like a hungry termite. While, I'm not trying to be an enabler, part of why we ride bikes, motorcycles, etc.. is because we love the sport and looking at our bikes. Let's face it. But, as Dan has mentioned above, go check out some of the other Endurance bikes in that class that are available near you (if any) and see which one fits you. You might find another that you like. Cervelo c3 c6, Canyon Endurance, Giant Defy, Pinarello Razha are all other options.
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Old 02-18-17, 02:48 PM
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Originally Posted by motosonic View Post
Learn from my mistakes. While this example doesn't apply 'directly' to bicycles, it does.
A few years ago I went back to motorcycling to finally get my license that I had been wanting for many years. I've been a huge Ducati fan all my life and I thought, one day I'm going to get my license and buy that Ducati I always dreamed of. Well, I got the license, fell in love with motorcycles all over again, but I didn't get the Ducati. I went with a Suzuki to save money and thought "it's similar, so, it's fine". But it wasn't. Every time I rode that bike I wanted that Ducati more and more and more until I eventually sold the darn thing for a loss and bought the Ducati.
I think you get the point of my story. If you don't get the Colnago, every time you ride whichever bike you DO get, you'll want that Colnago more and more and it'll eat away at you like a hungry termite. While, I'm not trying to be an enabler, part of why we ride bikes, motorcycles, etc.. is because we love the sport and looking at our bikes. Let's face it. But, as Dan has mentioned above, go check out some of the other Endurance bikes in that class that are available near you (if any) and see which one fits you. You might find another that you like. Cervelo c3 c6, Canyon Endurance, Giant Defy, Pinarello Razha are all other options.
That is one side of the coin.

On the other side of the coin, there are millions of exercise machines collecting dust in people's garages and basements. It seemed like a good idea when purchased, but just weren't as exciting once they were brought home.

Browsing Craigslist, or one's favorite bike ads, and it isn't uncommon to find a bicycle listed almost new, ridden < 100 miles, or whatever. Some decades old, with original tires.

Just be sure that the "dream bike" is the right thing, and also is the style of riding that you'll be doing. Road riding isn't for everyone. Fenders? Fat Tires? Disc Brakes?

Oh, and I really like my Colnago C40, and will eventually get a C50 built up. I probably won't do a C60 for some time though. But, who knows, perhaps the right deal will show up.

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Old 02-18-17, 03:11 PM
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@motosonic, I agree with you. If you pass up on what you really want (and can reasonably afford) it will gnaw at you like a termite with a bottomless pit stomach.

If I am right, the seller in question is the famed Mike Perry, aka Maestro. Mike's suggested build, with Chorus and Ambrosio Excellence rims is a fantastic set up. The OP is in England and so he will benefit from the one on one dealings with Mike. You can't beat that!

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Old 02-18-17, 06:53 PM
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I have a C59 and it is great but from what I have heard you could certainly do better than a C60 if you are after a comfortable ride.
Then again if you aren't going to be happy with anything else go for it.
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Old 02-18-17, 09:37 PM
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I'm not a fan of spending huge sums unless I'm certain it's going to be well used. Would be a shame for you to get a C60 and decide maybe running or swimming is your thing and C60 either collects dust or ends up on CL.

Also I think you would be amazed at how great cheaper bikes are now. Especially if you haven't cycled in a while? I'm not sure a C60 geometry would be ideal. I'd go for a Trek Domane, Cervelo R3, Giant Defy/Contend, Cannondale Synapse or other Endurance style first. I'm building up a endurance R3 like bike myself, it's just more comfortable. Bike I sold is C60 geometry.

As for watch, I'm a big of affordables. I just purchased the Seiko Turtle SRP773, by far and away favorite blue faced diver. It's simplistic minimal rugged look is awesome. Also purchased Borealis Cascais for a bit more sophisticated flair. But it's still a Swiss STP11-1 (ETA 2824 clone with extra jewel and improvements), 300m WR, sapphire crystal, ceramic bezel, beefy bracelet with beefy dive extension, BWG9 (2nd best) lume from Superluminova. Very excited for that to be delivered.
- But if you need to spend thousands... I know I'd buy a Grand Seiko.
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Old 02-19-17, 05:18 AM
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Thanks guys for taking the time to write your very helpful replies. To answer some of your points:
@Bottecchia (by the way, a true legend, what a life story): yes it is Mike. Seems a real gentleman. If I buy, it will definitely be through him. I'll PM you following your kind offer.

@ Clifford. I'm embarrassed to write that my weight today is 97kg. I want to get down to 85kg and doing regular sport at that weight, I hope to get back to my ideal range of fluctuating 80 - 85kg. The De Rosa has a weight limit of 90kg and I still have it. It still is a beautiful bike - the model is Dual from 2003 . Tubing is badged as Dedacciai's U alloy (which I think is scandium) and it has rear carbon seatstays and a carbon fork. Would you risk riding it? Probably with gear on and a water bottle, it would be carrying 100kg.

Having read all of your comments which led to self-psycho analysis , I think my biggest worry is not spending the money but that I am not worthy of the C60's level (I fear being over-taken by a 75 yo lady on a tricycle!) and would not find it to be as smooth and comfortable as I am wishing so it would just sit there and be used sparingly whereas I want to be using it every day I can. Unfortunately, test riding bikes in the UK is a near impossibility. When I was buying my De Rosa, I was pretty annoyed that the shop would not let me test one they had on display in a different colour and one size down...seems to be the norm here.

Perhaps the most telling thing came after my original post. Fired up with enthusiasm, I was telling my cousin with whom we are staying in with France about my bike shop visit. He mentioned that he had an old mountain bike from the early 90s that he had not touched in years. As he is the same height and build as me, I went down to check. Giant Euro 1, if that means anything. We gave it a good clean up and lube, put it in the car and had the local bike shop put on new slicks to the 26" wheels - Schwalbe Stelvio. And off I went intending to ride a couple of miles. After 3 or 4 minutes, I was ready to jack it all in and write a post on here to apologise for wasting your time - slow, out of breath, aching and every slight incline feeling like the Alpe d'Huez. But I kept my cadence as high as I could and, by luck, found a lovely 2-mile long path around a lake in Divonne near the Swiss border. I really got back into it on the flat and ended up riding for 1h 45 minutes and felt so exhilarated but a bit depressed as I only did 40km in that time (giving it all I could) which is approximately a pathetic 14mph on flat.

Would a better bike and gears that worked properly have improved this? Possibly slightly but at best by 2-3 mph and remember this is flat terrain. The reason is me not the bike! So this made me think that buying a C60 was just an insult to Ernesto and his team and I should set myself a goal of getting up to 20mph average over a couple of hours on undulating terrain before buying it and maybe looking at something good secondhand in the interim to help me get there. I've looked at cycling weekend breaks for road beginners but I'll obviously need a bike for that. A secondhand one? Then again, that C60 is so beautiful...

Thanks for all the advice and sorry if the long post has bored you

@ zymphad. Yes Grand Seiko are beautiful but beyond my budget. I was looking at an Omega Speedmaster "moon watch" (to replace one I had stolen) or Tag Heuer. You can get a second hand Speedy for around £1500 in good condition. But I have definitely decided to sort out my bike situation first, although the daily runaround bike has been solved by my cousin donating me his Giant 1 in return for helping him bleed the brakes on his car, do an oil change and flush through the coolant system...fair exchange, no robbery! Re Endurance frames, I really want to stick with Campagnolo which usually means Italian bikes but your point is well taken - cheers!
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Old 02-19-17, 06:25 AM
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You can put campagnolo on any bike you want. Team Katusha will be using campagnolo on their Canyon Endurance SLX.

Also don't view endurance bikes as something less, these are the frames that are used on the most exciting races, the Spring Classics. It's because these frames are more versatile, comfortable, yet still powerful.

Go for the C60, but I wouldn't pay unless you somehow could get fitted first. Maybe you are different, but 10 years off the bike, and getting older, for most people their flexibility decreases and have more back pain due to our jobs (sitting long periods, tight hamstring etc).

I think you'll be surprised to see a lot of the long term riders on this forum, especially in Addiction, riders are switching to the endurance/gravel all purpose frames. These frames often come with disc brakes, they take wider tires, comfortable, fast, off-road or not, just overall tons more fun and like me, they probably don't want to be hunched over a race frame.
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Old 02-19-17, 07:11 AM
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The C60 is sexy. A friend owns one. He got rid of Sworks tarmac for it. I hope to one day own one, but alas fear it is a pipe dream
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Old 02-19-17, 08:27 AM
  #21  
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@zymphad : I agree totally with what you say about Endurance frames. Much more suited to people like me and what we're looking for.

The guy in the shop yesterday told me that Bianchi's Infinito CV was an alternative to the C60 based on my requirements but he thought the quality difference was enormous relative to the price difference in the C60's favour. He also told me that he was sure I could get a comfortable position on the C60 by keeping the front end as high as possible (he said 4 spacers max but this should be enough).

The reason I mention Campy/Italian bikes is that if I am not making up a "dream scenario" bike like the C60, I'll probably go with a made-up bike and tweak a few things rather than build-up a frame from scratch. I'll also set my budget at around £2,500. From what I've seen, there are hardly any non-Italian bikes in that range with Campagnolo. I looked at the Infinito with Chorus which costs £4,300 and with Potenza which costs £3,400; there is the Intenso ( a frame down from Infinito in the Endurance range) with Potenza at £2,300. I'll look at the Intenso and any second hand frames/bikes before deciding. I guess the Intenso is more than capable to help me bring my performance level up but I'll need to read reviews re comfort.

I won't go for the Infinito with Chorus - I'd be getting a lot less with the Infinito than with the C60 and Chorus which is only a few hundred pounds more from Maestro.

So my decision is now C60 or interim solution/future second bike at £2,500 which would seem to be between the Infinito, Kinesis titanium or Boardman.

Thanks again for the advice.
@battaglin Unfortunately, I cannot PM you until I have been a forum member for longer. Apologies
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Old 02-19-17, 08:40 AM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by robbo400 View Post
The guy in the shop yesterday told me that Bianchi's Infinito CV was an alternative to the C60 based on my requirements but he thought the quality difference was enormous relative to the price difference in the C60's favour.
Only if you're grading on an extreme curve or if you've got a really decked-out Bianchi. A good CF frame with 105-level equipment and decent wheels should run you half of what the Colnago costs and not hold you back one bit.
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Old 02-19-17, 09:09 AM
  #23  
robbo400
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Thanks WhyFi.
In the meantime I've read reviews of the Intenso with Potenza which are pretty good and, as you say, is roughly half of the C60.
Would anyone think that 2017 Potenza is going to have worse operational performance that 2003 Record? I'm not worried about weight, given where I am in my fitness regime, but I do remember that years back Campag's Avanti and Mirage came in for hammering on reviews. I think they have scrapped/upgraded both since and I am imagining that Potenza today is where Centaur/Daytona used to sit. I really don't want to change to Shimano. I know they are excellent quality but I'm used to Campag...

By the way, WhyFi you guys have some awsome hifi equipment in the US, especially tubes. I heard some McIntosh stuff at a demo and it blew me away. You need to sell a house to buy it though...I still get 2nd hand Sansui stuff which, to my ears, sounds better than so much modern day award-winning equipment.
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Old 02-19-17, 09:20 AM
  #24  
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IMO the best audio equipment to come out of US recently is Schiit Jotenheim. So affordable, fully balanced, simple/minimal design. Truly an amazing piece of equipment. I've become huge fan of power monitors now, makes life so much easier. One DAC with pre-amp output w/ powered speakers, life is simple.
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Old 02-19-17, 09:30 AM
  #25  
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Oh and if you're into Italian bikes, check out Wilier. The GTR series won bike of the year last year and it's a wonderful Endurance bike. Just something else for you to consider. I believe the UK versions can also be outfitted with Campy Drivetrains as well straight from the factory.
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