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Sram Red Etap vs Dura Ace mechanical?

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Sram Red Etap vs Dura Ace mechanical?

Old 02-19-21, 06:51 PM
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Ataylor
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Sram Red Etap vs Dura Ace mechanical?

For anyone who's tried both, which do you prefer and why? Could you please post any pros or cons you may have experienced? I'm deciding between the two for my Specialized Roubaix 2016 sport and not sure which to choose.
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Old 02-19-21, 07:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Ataylor View Post
For anyone who's tried both, which do you prefer and why? Could you please post any pros or cons you may have experienced? I'm deciding between the two for my Specialized Roubaix 2016 sport and not sure which to choose.
I, grudgingly, tried electronic shifting and upgraded a bike from DA to Ultegra Di2. Really liked the electronic shifting. I live in the frozen north so riding a lot of the time means full finger insulated gloves which tend to be a problem on DA mechanical but much more a problem on Di2. I don’t like mechanical SRAM shifting.

Then, I converted a mech bike over to electronic. The no-brainer solution there is to go with eTap because of wireless. Since I’d already become addicted to electronic shifting, then the only real choice for this bike was eTap Red.

Well, I sure liked the eTap electronic shifting ergonomics. The single paddle makes shifting with gloves super clean and easy since the paddle is larger and there is only one. On top of that, I liked the shifting set up so much that I switched my other Di2 bike over to eTap when I got a good deal on eTap Red. Been very happy since with both electronic shifting (not a single missed shift in 15,000 miles) in general and etap in particular.

While this may not matter to you, a big benefit for me was on my travel bike. Since there are no wires, you can just unbolt the RD and put it safely in the middle of the case. No wires to worry about, super simple.

J.
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Old 02-19-21, 08:00 PM
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I've had a few bikes with both mechanical DA and SRAM Red eTap (11 speed). Both are great. I prefer SRAM eTap for a couple of reasons. The whole right shifter goes to the right/outboard/down the cassette and left shifter goes left/inboard/up the cassette thing is so intuitive, simple and elegant. Also, electronic stuff fascinates me and, simple creature that I am, sort of leaves me in awe. Also, since I build my own bikes from used frames I buy, you just can't find easier setups than SRAM wireless. Both are excellent and you can't really go wrong either way. Whatever you choose, make sure we get to see your ride. Good luck.
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Old 02-19-21, 08:12 PM
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Can you even find Red Etap (I assume you are referring to 11spd) these days? Maybe Force Etap AXS x2?

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Old 02-19-21, 10:42 PM
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Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
I, grudgingly, tried electronic shifting and upgraded a bike from DA to Ultegra Di2. Really liked the electronic shifting. I live in the frozen north so riding a lot of the time means full finger insulated gloves which tend to be a problem on DA mechanical but much more a problem on Di2. I donít like mechanical SRAM shifting.

Then, I converted a mech bike over to electronic. The no-brainer solution there is to go with eTap because of wireless. Since Iíd already become addicted to electronic shifting, then the only real choice for this bike was eTap Red.

Well, I sure liked the eTap electronic shifting ergonomics. The single paddle makes shifting with gloves super clean and easy since the paddle is larger and there is only one. On top of that, I liked the shifting set up so much that I switched my other Di2 bike over to eTap when I got a good deal on eTap Red. Been very happy since with both electronic shifting (not a single missed shift in 15,000 miles) in general and etap in particular.

While this may not matter to you, a big benefit for me was on my travel bike. Since there are no wires, you can just unbolt the RD and put it safely in the middle of the case. No wires to worry about, super simple.

J.
Has the difference in shifting speed bothered you at all? I've heard that the Etap is smoother, but slightly slower. Whereas the DU is quicker, but just a tad big clunkier? To be honest, judging from the outside, I feel as though I would highly, highly prefer a quicker shift than a smoother one that comes with a bit of drag. This view could very easily and obviously change with a test ride, but for now, the main reason for wanting to go the electronic route is not only for the easier shift, but for the quickness. A smooth shift would feel beautiful, I'm sure, and it would be amazing to have both, but since it seems as though I have to choose one, without actually having much experience with either, I'm pretty sure I would choose speed over smoothness. Does, perhaps, smoothness and ease of use (slightly less pressure to deal with) trump a quick shift? Or is it a negligible difference for you?

Originally Posted by zatopek View Post
I've had a few bikes with both mechanical DA and SRAM Red eTap (11 speed). Both are great. I prefer SRAM eTap for a couple of reasons. The whole right shifter goes to the right/outboard/down the cassette and left shifter goes left/inboard/up the cassette thing is so intuitive, simple and elegant. Also, electronic stuff fascinates me and, simple creature that I am, sort of leaves me in awe. Also, since I build my own bikes from used frames I buy, you just can't find easier setups than SRAM wireless. Both are excellent and you can't really go wrong either way. Whatever you choose, make sure we get to see your ride. Good luck.
I agree. I think it's very awe-inspiring. Many of us just forget sometimes.

As for my ride, it's nothing special. Just a stock Roubaix. If I pick up the groupset, though, I'll try and take a pic. Thanks a lot for your input and the luck. I appreciate it.

Originally Posted by scott967 View Post
Can you even find Red Etap (I assume you are referring to 11spd) these days? Maybe Force Etap AXS x2?

scott s.
.
Yep, 11 speed. I asked my LBS and they couldn't source it. Why is this? Is it because everything's in short supply these days due to the pandemic? Or are you suggesting that it's discontinued? First heard about the Sram today, so I know practically nothing about this version or any other before it. I did hear that the Red is "better" than the Force by a bit, but they didn't go into to the reasons as to why that is, so it's on my list to find out why (or if) that is the case.
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Old 02-19-21, 11:59 PM
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I have one bike with Ultegra 11 sp mechanical and another with Force eTap AXS 12 speed. Ultegra is cheaper and simple, I can fix almost anything myself. eTap is excellent ergonomically, reliable shifting, easy to adjust. But it is more expensive and when the right shifter died for a mysterious reason I had to give the bike to LBS for a week to order a new shifter and replace.
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Old 02-20-21, 08:48 AM
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Sram 11 speed etap is dead. If you're not already stuck with it, don't buy it. The new 12 speed axs has replaced it. It won't work with genuine shimano wheels because the freehub body can't be changed to an XDR model.
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Old 02-20-21, 09:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Ataylor View Post


Yep, 11 speed. I asked my LBS and they couldn't source it. Why is this? Is it because everything's in short supply these days due to the pandemic? Or are you suggesting that it's discontinued? .
11spd eTap is dead.
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Old 02-20-21, 10:31 AM
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There are 11 speed Red products still sold, but the communication system is not compatible with any AXS products, so it doesn't seem like a wise investment.

https://www.sram.com/en/sram/road/se...levancy&page=1
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Old 02-20-21, 11:26 AM
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Originally Posted by tankist View Post
I have one bike with Ultegra 11 sp mechanical and another with Force eTap AXS 12 speed. Ultegra is cheaper and simple, I can fix almost anything myself. eTap is excellent ergonomically, reliable shifting, easy to adjust. But it is more expensive and when the right shifter died for a mysterious reason I had to give the bike to LBS for a week to order a new shifter and replace.
Gotcha! Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

Originally Posted by DaveSSS View Post
Sram 11 speed etap is dead. If you're not already stuck with it, don't buy it. The new 12 speed axs has replaced it. It won't work with genuine shimano wheels because the freehub body can't be changed to an XDR model.
Originally Posted by noodle soup View Post
11spd eTap is dead.
Originally Posted by DaveSSS View Post
There are 11 speed Red products still sold, but the communication system is not compatible with any AXS products, so it doesn't seem like a wise investment.

https://www.sram.com/en/sram/road/se...levancy&page=1
Thanks, guys. Glad you cleared that up for me. I was going to ask you all if there was a difference between those two. Wasn't super clear to me when I was searching yesterday.

And Dave, no, I haven't bought anything yet. Started with an intent to purchase the Ultegra groupset, then decided to go the DA/Etap route. Still undecided as of this moment.
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Old 02-20-21, 11:28 AM
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I have one other question for you guys. Since Di2 doesn't work on my frame and neither does the Sram (assuming the same incompatibly applies to the Force Etap), unless I buy a new bike, am I basically SOL if I want mechanical shifting (from a reliable brand) on my bike? If so, then perhaps DA is the closest thing I can possibly get (on my frame) to a mechanical shift?
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Old 02-20-21, 01:18 PM
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Does your bike have 105?
Why do you want to change it?
It should work perfectly well and is of a similar level to the rest of the bike.
If you change to a high end groupset then you will want some better wheels and then a better frame.
Bingo! A new bike.
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Old 02-20-21, 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Ataylor View Post
Has the difference in shifting speed bothered you at all? I've heard that the Etap is smoother, but slightly slower. Whereas the DU is quicker, but just a tad big clunkier? To be honest, judging from the outside, I feel as though I would highly, highly prefer a quicker shift than a smoother one that comes with a bit of drag. This view could very easily and obviously change with a test ride, but for now, the main reason for wanting to go the electronic route is not only for the easier shift, but for the quickness. A smooth shift would feel beautiful, I'm sure, and it would be amazing to have both, but since it seems as though I have to choose one, without actually having much experience with either, I'm pretty sure I would choose speed over smoothness. Does, perhaps, smoothness and ease of use (slightly less pressure to deal with) trump a quick shift? Or is it a negligible difference for you?
Frankly, I donít notice a difference. The big advantage of electronic shifting is that once you tell it to shift, it shifts quickly and perfectly. The same canít be said of mechanical, especially for me when Iím tired while in a long ride. I think this issue between the two is largely a case of ďtastes great vs less filling.Ē What is really impressive is the way it will shift under load.

What I do notice is the ergonomics. The SRAM shifting ergonomics are just much simpler than with Shimano and I like that. The paddle size is a big deal for me. The Shimano paddles are too small and they did cause me to shift incorrectly when I wanted to shift. So not a fan of that.

The other esthetic thing about wireless is you lose some cables and itís overall a much cleaner installation especially at the cockpit.

You canít really go wrong with either, but if you have to wear full finger gloves, then there is a significant differentiation.
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Old 02-20-21, 02:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Dean V View Post
Does your bike have 105?
Why do you want to change it?
It should work perfectly well and is of a similar level to the rest of the bike.
If you change to a high end groupset then you will want some better wheels and then a better frame.
Bingo! A new bike.
It does, yea'. It came stocked with 105 components.

I have new wheels, though, and buying a new bike seems pointless to me unless I was willing to spend double (or more) than what I'm currently willing to spend on DA components (should be around 2k?), which is something that I don't want to do. Why do I say this? Because my objective is centered around the shifting. The reason the thought of buying a new bike crossed my mind was because the frame would support the mechanical shifting. But if I pay $4,000 for a new bike (or a little less for a previous year's model - which more than likely will come with the same exact components I already have - i.e. 105, rendering the purchase pointless, IMO), then pay an additional $2,000+ for electronic shifting, that's way more than I want to spend right now. Which leaves me with the only other alternative I can think of: Buying DA (or maybe even Ultergra) components for my current frame. If you feel as though there's something wrong with my approach, by all means, please tell me. I'm not an expert and I'm open to hearing what everyone has to say, which is why I'm here.

With that being said, the current setup I have right now is defective. My LBS couldn't figure out for the life of them why my 11-speed bike only had 10 speeds. After much contemplating and even reaching out to Specialized and confirming model numbers and what not, they concluded that the gear was very simply defective, since it's an 11-speed that only shifts 10 times. Since my warranty was a month or so past the expirations date, Specialized chose not to repair or replace it. So be it.

That, however, is not the biggest reason for wanting to upgrade. The main reason, simply put, is this: quicker and smoother shifts. Mine just feels clunky and I've had issues with missing shifts for years. At times, it doesn't shift at all. I have to shift twice in order to get to the next gear and then shift back to sit in the gear I originally wanted. In other words, I want to go to gear 5, but nothing happens besides some rattling. I click twice to go from gear 4 to gear 6, it goes there, and I then click back to go to gear 5.

I'm not a mechanic by any means, so I don't know how to resolve this issue. I've had the bike tuned more than once (at different shops) and there's just always something wrong with the shifting. I don't know what it is and apparently nothing my LBS does cures said issues. Maybe I'll experience the same thing with the DA groupset after some time? Who knows. I just honestly don't think I have the patience or the willingness to deal with this anymore. I definitely don't deny that this purchase (to some degree) is emotionally charged, but at the end of the day, I'm hopeful that whatever I buy will be a step up from my current configuration (i.e. quicker, smoother, albeit not significantly, I know) and additionally will fix the issues I've had thus far.
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Old 02-20-21, 02:58 PM
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Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
Frankly, I don’t notice a difference. The big advantage of electronic shifting is that once you tell it to shift, it shifts quickly and perfectly. The same can’t be said of mechanical, especially for me when I’m tired while in a long ride. I think this issue between the two is largely a case of “tastes great vs less filling.” What is really impressive is the way it will shift under load.

What I do notice is the ergonomics. The SRAM shifting ergonomics are just much simpler than with Shimano and I like that. The paddle size is a big deal for me. The Shimano paddles are too small and they did cause me to shift incorrectly when I wanted to shift. So not a fan of that.

The other esthetic thing about wireless is you lose some cables and it’s overall a much cleaner installation especially at the cockpit.

You can’t really go wrong with either, but if you have to wear full finger gloves, then there is a significant differentiation.
Thanks a ton for your feedback, John. Unfortunately, it seems as though I have to stick with mechanical, but man does electronic sound heavenly. Either way, thanks again and enjoy your ride in good health, bud.
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Old 02-20-21, 06:24 PM
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There is no good reason why your 105 shouldn't work very well.
But if you are done with trying to get it sorted I would go for Ultegra di2.
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Old 02-20-21, 06:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Dean V View Post
There is no good reason why your 105 shouldn't work very well.
Yea', I don't know. I suppose if I can't make up my mind, I'll just have it tuned up yet again and hope for a different outcome this time around. I've tried some of the best shops in my city, so I don't quite know where else to take it.

Originally Posted by Dean V View Post
But if you are done with trying to get it sorted I would go for Ultegra di2.
I have an older 2016 Roubaix, so the Di2 isn't compatible with my frame.
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Old 02-20-21, 08:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Ataylor View Post
Yea', I don't know. I suppose if I can't make up my mind, I'll just have it tuned up yet again and hope for a different outcome this time around. I've tried some of the best shops in my city, so I don't quite know where else to take it.



I have an older 2016 Roubaix, so the Di2 isn't compatible with my frame.
It should fit. Can't see why it wouldn't.
It was available on the 2016 Roubaix Comp SL4.
Only frames it wouldn't fit are those with external gear cable routing in which case there are no holes to get the wires through the frame and sticking them on the outside would be rather ugly.
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Old 02-20-21, 11:14 PM
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the only opinion i have is is to stop buying discs and electronic shifting because all you are doing is contributing the increase cost of cycling and making it harder for people to get into bikes , as well keeping the industry trending towards a system that could fail and also bike that dont allow mechanical parts to become the norm so when you cant sustain a battery to shift you are put of luck because your frame wont even give the option to install mechs because the industry trended toward profits , instead of sticking with traditional systems that are fail proof !
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Old 02-21-21, 08:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Toespeas View Post
the only opinion i have is is to stop buying discs and electronic shifting because all you are doing is contributing the increase cost of cycling and making it harder for people to get into bikes , as well keeping the industry trending towards a system that could fail and also bike that dont allow mechanical parts to become the norm so when you cant sustain a battery to shift you are put of luck because your frame wont even give the option to install mechs because the industry trended toward profits , instead of sticking with traditional systems that are fail proof !


Nice rant, but you forgot to yell at the clouds.
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Old 02-21-21, 10:12 AM
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Electronic is that much better. Get it.
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Old 02-21-21, 11:41 AM
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I don't know if its been said tldr. Eff sram! Axis is nice, but it is far too expensive. Mostly owing to the proprietary garbage that sramm instituted with this groupset.
I was a staunch sram guy. But my next bike will be shimano.
I bought brand new 11 speed e tap group just last year. Now discontinued to divert sales to the new axs group. Now its not supported by the parent co. No parts, no spares nothing. If it fails I'm screwed. Well thank you very much Sham.
I have a Force axs groupset on a '16 tarmac. Functionally its fine, but its heavy. Red would have cost me another $1800.00. I have built entire bikes for that much. Just to gain a little weight savings? I couldnt do it.
The proverbial straw was the proprietary shenanigans with its parts not being backward compatible. And inventing another entirely new bb standard just to force you to buy the new crankset. Made me feel like had been on a date with Bill Cosby.
My advice advice Dura Ace or even Ultegra. There is really nothing to gain with Sham. Except room in your wallet.
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Old 02-21-21, 11:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Toespeas View Post
the only opinion i have is is to stop buying discs and electronic shifting because all you are doing is contributing the increase cost of cycling and making it harder for people to get into bikes , as well keeping the industry trending towards a system that could fail and also bike that dont allow mechanical parts to become the norm so when you cant sustain a battery to shift you are put of luck because your frame wont even give the option to install mechs because the industry trended toward profits , instead of sticking with traditional systems that are fail proof !
I wouldn't worry, if there becomes a large enough market for it someone will fill it. There are a couple different Chinese companies making unbelievably cheap groupsets that may warrant a look.
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Old 02-21-21, 12:11 PM
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From my readings of posts on the weight weenies forum, the weight difference between force and red is only about 100 grams, excluding the crank. I really think it was stupid to add a twelfth sprocket to increase range, then turn around and take that range away with a 13T difference at the crank. I've used a Campy chorus 48/32 crank and shimano grx 46/30 crank with force axs. Prior to force axs, I had Campy chorus 12 groups. Those can be mixed with axs drivetrains. I have seen some recent prices reductions on force hydraulic shifters and calipers. I sold off a spare force 4 piece group mechanical lever group for $1000 because my next move may be changing from my mechanical levers and Juin-Tech GT disc calipers to full hydraulic. The new wide RD is also the best choice for most riders, although the standard RD does work with the 10-36 cassette.
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Old 02-21-21, 12:36 PM
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Originally Posted by DaveSSS View Post
From my readings of posts on the weight weenies forum, the weight difference between force and red is only about 100 grams, excluding the crank. I really think it was stupid to add a twelfth sprocket to increase range, then turn around and take that range away with a 13T difference at the crank. I've used a Campy chorus 48/32 crank and shimano grx 46/30 crank with force axs. Prior to force axs, I had Campy chorus 12 groups. Those can be mixed with axs drivetrains. I have seen some recent prices reductions on force hydraulic shifters and calipers. I sold off a spare force 4 piece group mechanical lever group for $1000 because my next move may be changing from my mechanical levers and Juin-Tech GT disc calipers to full hydraulic. The new wide RD is also the best choice for most riders, although the standard RD does work with the 10-36 cassette.
From memory of research done last year when I built the force bike, because I had to use the force crankset. The weight difference was over 300 grams. But I can't remember if that included the hydrolic disk brakes. I did upgrade the calipers to red post mount. So it could be even worse than 300 gm.
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