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Whats the difference in groupsets, really.... when your at a quality level.

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Whats the difference in groupsets, really.... when your at a quality level.

Old 06-30-13, 02:39 PM
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Whats the difference in groupsets, really.... when you're at a quality level.

......When you’re at a quality level, is it really just splitting hairs and being a fashionista?

I've always been happy with choosing what I personally believe to be the 'tipping point' in quality 'v' quantity in regards to Groupsets.
Been looking at what and how my 2012 Carbon (compact) Centaur kit compares to the higher echelons of the campag family and in all fairnesss, all I can really tell form the fact sheets on campies website are the whole set becomes a fraction lighter, till you get to record where things really get interesting, same for Shimano and SRAM. For a simple fella like myself who does nothing but ride out alone on 80-100 mile tips once, or maybe twice a week would I notice any difference in a higher-end groupset??

Please be frank and to the point as you like
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Old 06-30-13, 02:55 PM
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Your assumptions are correct.

The performance to price ratio falls off pretty quick above 105 / rival level.

It is VERY are to find a poor performing groupo any more. Sme may be lighter and flashier, but they all work well.
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Old 06-30-13, 03:02 PM
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I think the higher end stuff appeals to those who value weight savings and aesthetics. My SRAM Rival shifters work pretty well.
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Old 06-30-13, 03:04 PM
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And Centaur is a great looking group. And has plenty of curb appeal. At least in the US where Campy is relatively uncommon.
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Old 06-30-13, 03:06 PM
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Especially for certain components there is little to no difference. Front derailleurs get slightly lighter but don't work differently, while rears have more of a weight difference (for whatever it matters) and can be snappier, especially going from a low-end to mid or upper. On the other hand, from what I have read the early 6700 shifters tended to fray and cut shifting cables due to an engineering issue that was rectified for 5700, making the lower-end option preferable of those two.

Over in Campy-land, going to Chorus shifters instead of Athena allows more gears to be shifted at once in each direction, and the crank gets an appreciable upgrade as well.

Now, how much all this means to a recreation rider is an entirely different question.
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Old 06-30-13, 03:06 PM
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I think the Centaur set looks like 'real' campy kit and has a retro edge to the mechs.. the carbon mechs look 'techno' as does SRAM. Shimano, well that's just uninspiring IMHO
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Old 06-30-13, 03:07 PM
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Not anymore but a few year ago all Campagnolo 10 spd groups where interchangeable. The only difference was in material making them lighter. I've been happily using Centaur for years, trying every group set above and below minus the electronic ones, never noticing a difference. If I where to choose now I would choose Chorus as there are mechanical/functional differences.
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Old 06-30-13, 03:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Bah Humbug

Over in Campy-land, going to Chorus shifters instead of Athena allows more gears to be shifted at once in each direction, and the crank gets an appreciable upgrade as well.

Now, how much all this means to a recreation rider is an entirely different question.
I have the ultra shifters with my Centaur kit already.. Some times I actually would prefer it if they didn't shift more than 1 at a time!!
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Old 06-30-13, 03:12 PM
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Originally Posted by clausen
Chorus as there are mechanical/functional differences.
I agree, I'd skip Athena.
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Old 06-30-13, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by DinoShepherd
Your assumptions are correct.

The performance to price ratio falls off pretty quick above 105 / rival level.

It is VERY are to find a poor performing groupo any more. Sme may be lighter and flashier, but they all work well.
Except for shimano 2300, which performs only OK, would rather have Alivio.
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Old 06-30-13, 04:51 PM
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The bling intimidates your opponents at the start line and stop lights and intersections. And if they don't bow down, you can pull what Sacha Baron did in, "the dictator".

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Old 06-30-13, 04:58 PM
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The electronic shifting groups are a step up from the mechanical, IMHO. The new Dura Ace and Ultegra groups supposedly have really great front shifting due to a redesign of the front derailer (derailleur if you prefer).

I would really like to spend the cash on a Dura Ace groupset, I love the way the new 9000 stuff looks and apparently it is mechanically awesome too, but then reality takes over and I realize I am probably fine with 105.
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Old 06-30-13, 05:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Bah Humbug
Especially for certain components there is little to no difference. Front derailleurs get slightly lighter but don't work differently, while rears have more of a weight difference (for whatever it matters) and can be snappier, especially going from a low-end to mid or upper. On the other hand, from what I have read the early 6700 shifters tended to fray and cut shifting cables due to an engineering issue that was rectified for 5700, making the lower-end option preferable of those two.

Over in Campy-land, going to Chorus shifters instead of Athena allows more gears to be shifted at once in each direction, and the crank gets an appreciable upgrade as well.

Now, how much all this means to a recreation rider is an entirely different question.
Disagree about FD especially the DA 9000 FD. That thing is beautiful, shifts are as easy as rear shifts, even going up to the big ring. The new design and shift operation is totally different than other Shimano stuff. Two trim positions for each ring as well. It's way different, and a major improvement.

I had 6700 stuff, and it was a step down from 6500, especially the shifting. First gen under-tape cable routing for the Ultegra line and it showed. Much cleaner looking, but practical operation was not very good. Shifting up on the FD was really stiff.

But the DA 9000 group is ridiculously good. You can certainly argue the value and pricing (I got a price that I felt comfortable paying), but the operation is a massive improvement to anything I've used before in the Shimano line.
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Old 06-30-13, 05:16 PM
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Originally Posted by cthenn
Disagree about FD especially the DA 9000 FD. That thing is beautiful, shifts are as easy as rear shifts, even going up to the big ring. The new design and shift operation is totally different than other Shimano stuff. Two trim positions for each ring as well. It's way different, and a major improvement.

I had 6700 stuff, and it was a step down from 6500, especially the shifting. First gen under-tape cable routing for the Ultegra line and it showed. Much cleaner looking, but practical operation was not very good. Shifting up on the FD was really stiff.

But the DA 9000 group is ridiculously good. You can certainly argue the value and pricing (I got a price that I felt comfortable paying), but the operation is a massive improvement to anything I've used before in the Shimano line.
A man who knows his groupsets. Well stated. DA 7900/6700 was a huge disappoint. I thought both were awful. DA 9000 is wonderful as you say and as good as Campy which I believe it terrific. OP...honestly there are many schools. Depends on your background. Some guys aren't plussed by any decent groupset but others are particular like me. So YMMV. 2010 Centaur I believe is the best groupset for the $$ on the planet...especially if you buy out of the UK. For new Campy, I wouldn't go below Chorus because Campy should include multiple shifting which is a great option. So Chorus or Record. Athena also has the crappy Power Torque cranks which don't hold a candle to Ultra Torque.
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Old 06-30-13, 05:32 PM
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Originally Posted by clausen
Not anymore but a few year ago all Campagnolo 10 spd groups where interchangeable. The only difference was in material making them lighter. I've been happily using Centaur for years, trying every group set above and below minus the electronic ones, never noticing a difference. If I where to choose now I would choose Chorus as there are mechanical/functional differences.
+1. My 10-speed group has Chorus ergolevers and Centaur everything else. Works flawlessly, looks great.
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Old 06-30-13, 05:38 PM
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The major difference, at least with Shimano and SRAM, is that the high end group sets get new features/improvements first, which then trickle down over a few years into the lower levels. 7900 came out a while before 6700, and that came out a while before 5700. 9000 is the New Hotness for Dura-Ace, but there is not yet a matching group at the Ultegra or 105 levels with the new features. SRAM doesn't quite follow the same pattern, but the effect is more or less the same. ZeroLoss on both shifters used to be Red only, but now it's also in Force. This years Force is essentially last generation Red. 2012 Red got a new hood/lever shape and the Yaw FD which wasn't available in other groups until the just released Force22.
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Old 06-30-13, 05:42 PM
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Originally Posted by buffalowings
The bling intimidates your opponents at the start line and stop lights and intersections. And if they don't bow down, you can pull what Sacha Baron did in, "the dictator".

If your busy checking everyone out on the start line, your probably not going to be around at the end.
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Old 06-30-13, 06:04 PM
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Originally Posted by killa
I agree, I'd skip Athena.
But only for the shifters; I wouldn't necessarily bother for the rest of the group.

And yes, of course in certain situations there are differences in the FD; the SRAM Yaw ones are an example. In general, though, I'd say there's little difference. Certainly, say, 5700 and 6700 have little difference there.
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Old 06-30-13, 08:38 PM
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Beyond the minimal weight savings, claimed durability advantages and aesthetics, for those of us who are not racing (and even many of those who are), the perceived advantages in performance are no more than a placebo effect. I would seriously question the ability of most weekend warriors to blindly tell the difference in performance between mid-level and high-end groupsets ...I know I could not, but I am certainly no barometer.

As for curb appeal, I have never taken notice of another rider's component package (they usually whiz by me too fast to see it ).
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Old 07-01-13, 09:55 AM
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A lot of the strongest riders and most competant racers I know stick with Rival or 105. I generally buy Ultegra because I can afford it and I've never had a single problem with the series in 25 years of riding seriously. I'm sure I wouldn't be able to tell the difference between Ultegra and 105, but I figure that there's no reason to mess with success. I had DA on a bike once. Nice stuff but in no way worth the ~100% markup over Ultegra.
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Old 07-01-13, 10:09 AM
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I don't know about other districts, but in NorCal racing you see a lot of Ultegra/105, Force/Rival, Chorus/Centaur.
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Old 07-01-13, 10:43 AM
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Manufacturer-independent rule-of-thumb: second from the top group set gives the best "bang for your buck."
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Old 07-01-13, 11:47 AM
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Every year there is supposed to be some invisible idea of levels based on price. Then magically it happens all over again next year, and the year after that, etc. I don't doubt that drop-down of tech actually happens, and that they get better, but it's funny to think just how much time some have put into trying to figure it out for a purchase at a specific point in time with no real knowledge of what the names and numbers really mean for a few years of riding.
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Old 07-01-13, 01:00 PM
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I went from Ultegra 10 which was shot @ 3900 miles. to CAMPY Record 11 in 2011.
6000+miles on Record group and is fine. i replaced the chain @ 5500 miles but wasn't that bad.

This will explain some of the improvements the 11speed group has over Centraur (i think is 10 sp)
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Old 07-01-13, 01:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Ridelots24
I went from Ultegra 10 which was shot @ 3900 miles. to CAMPY Record 11 in 2011.
6000+miles on Record group and is fine. i replaced the chain @ 5500 miles but wasn't that bad.
shot at 3900 miles? What was shot?
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