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Groupset Ranking Chart (Shimano/SRAM/Campagnolo) Opinions?

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Groupset Ranking Chart (Shimano/SRAM/Campagnolo) Opinions?

Old 11-14-13, 09:47 AM
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StabbyJoe89
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Groupset Ranking Chart (Shimano/SRAM/Campagnolo) Opinions?

Heya,

I've poured over hundreds of threads and many reviews of different groupsets and how they compare to and against each other. I've come up with this mental image of how they would line up with each other across the big 3 so I decided to put it in a visual format. This is just a general guideline of how I perceive them to be arranged based on all the information I've read and the arguments I've heard. I remember scouring the inets for something like this back when I was starting to learn about groupsets. So I thought having a little tier system providing general rankings/guidelines might be useful for new guys looking to pick their first groupset. By general ranking I’m thinking just roughly where they would line up, I don’t mean to start an all-out battle royale =p. I would very much appreciate any opinions and input! All are welcome! From detailed, experience-based comparisons to a quick reply saying “X group should be at tier #4 .” Thanks!!!

What would you switch around? Just a forum to shoot around ideas!

[TABLE="width: 375, align: center"]
[TR]
[TD]#
[/TD]
[TD]Shimano
[/TD]
[TD]SRAM
[/TD]
[TD]Campagnolo
[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]1
[/TD]
[TD][/TD]
[TD][/TD]
[TD]Super Record
[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]2
[/TD]
[TD]Dura-Ace
[/TD]
[TD]Red
[/TD]
[TD]Record
[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]3
[/TD]
[TD][/TD]
[TD]Force
[/TD]
[TD]Chorus
[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]4
[/TD]
[TD]Ultegra
[/TD]
[TD][/TD]
[TD]Athena
[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]5
[/TD]
[TD][/TD]
[TD]Rival
[/TD]
[TD]Centaur
[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]6
[/TD]
[TD]105
[/TD]
[TD][/TD]
[TD][/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]7
[/TD]
[TD][/TD]
[TD]Apex
[/TD]
[TD]Veloce
[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]8
[/TD]
[TD]Tiagra
[/TD]
[TD][/TD]
[TD][/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]9
[/TD]
[TD]Sora
[/TD]
[TD][/TD]
[TD][/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]10
[/TD]
[TD]Claris
[/TD]
[TD][/TD]
[TD][/TD]
[/TR]
[/TABLE]

***I did not include Di2, EPS, or 10 vs 11 speed into the considerations. I feel like that would add a whole other level to all this. I'd like to consider this just in terms of mechs, performance, weights, asthetics, ergonomics, etc. Thanks!

Last edited by StabbyJoe89; 11-14-13 at 10:01 AM.
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Old 11-14-13, 09:57 AM
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Within the manufacturer, you've got Athenain the wrong spot ahead of Chorus.

Between manufacturers, you're never going to get consensus on the pecking order, I.e. uletegra> force, etc.
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Old 11-14-13, 10:03 AM
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My mistake! I meant to be put Chorus ahead of Athena but the weird html chart thing messed me up =). Thanks for the correction! And I'm positive a consensus wouldn't be reached, but I'm hoping more for an open forum to shoot **** and open a discussion =)
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Old 11-14-13, 10:11 AM
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If you ranked according to how well they work most of them would be on one line. Groupsets just get lighter as the cost goes up due to the use of more expensive materials like CF and Ti, though "what the market will bear" is probably the biggest factor in pricing. I also believe durability suffers with reduced weight, for example, Ti fasteners aren't as strong as steel.
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Old 11-14-13, 10:13 AM
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If you haven't already, you really need to test ride at least one from each group, and more if possible. The hood shape and physical operation of the shifters will in all likely hood skew your chart to favor one brand over the others.

And this is something that is mostly personal choice. Everybody's hands are little different and sometimes one shifting movement will be more natural than another.
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Old 11-14-13, 10:17 AM
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Old 11-14-13, 10:22 AM
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Thanks for the input. I agree that personal preference ergonomics is definitely key to picking a groupset. I've ridden Shimano and SRAM. I'm partial to feel of SRAM hoods & DoubleTap, there's just something about the feel of having stationary brake levers that I enjoy. I think Rival is the best bang for your buck from their line-up and since I don't race competitively I see anything above as unnecessary weight loss for my uses. I would love to try Campy at some point though
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Old 11-14-13, 10:22 AM
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Originally Posted by sced View Post
If you ranked according to how well they work most of them would be on one line. Groupsets just get lighter as the cost goes up due to the use of more expensive materials like CF and Ti, though "what the market will bear" is probably the biggest factor in pricing. I also believe durability suffers with reduced weight, for example, Ti fasteners aren't as strong as steel.
It's not just weight that distinguishes the groupsets as one goes up the line. There are also some noticeable differences in engineering and functionality. All three groups add cogs. Campy gets different crank technology and different shifter behavior.
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Old 11-14-13, 10:26 AM
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Originally Posted by halfspeed View Post
It's not just weight that distinguishes the groupsets as one goes up the line. There are also some noticeable differences in engineering and functionality. All three groups add cogs. Campy gets different crank technology and different shifter behavior.
It's exactly those differences that I'd like to hear about. How would you say Campy shift behavior differs? I like the crisp, concise mechanical shifts of SRAM as opposed to the smooth shifts of Shimano, but I've never had the opportunity to try Campy (short of some very nice older Campy downtube shifters =p)
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Old 11-14-13, 10:32 AM
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I can say with certainty that my Chorus equipped bikes don't shift as awesomely as my boss's Super Record equipped bikes. Not to say Chorus is bad, my first ride told me that I wouldn't own a bike with mechanical shifting adorned with anything but Campy. But... then I tried Super Record, and it just feels like Chorus perfected.

That said, I will be leaving Campy behind on my next build as I want hyrdo disc brakes, and Ui2 seems to be the best bet in that area, as Shimano MTB disc brakes are like heaven. SRAM is the only one I don't see myself ever owning.
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Old 11-14-13, 10:45 AM
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DI2>everything
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Old 11-14-13, 10:48 AM
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Old 11-14-13, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by StabbyJoe89 View Post
It's exactly those differences that I'd like to hear about. How would you say Campy shift behavior differs? I like the crisp, concise mechanical shifts of SRAM as opposed to the smooth shifts of Shimano, but I've never had the opportunity to try Campy (short of some very nice older Campy downtube shifters =p)
I don't think that he was referring to a difference between them and the other manufacturers, but rather the differences between the individual tiers within Campy, ie, the ability to dump more cogs in one lever throw.
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Old 11-14-13, 11:46 AM
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Red is lighter than SR
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Old 11-14-13, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Ghost Ryder View Post
Buttered or plain ?
Microwaved or kettle popped ?
Salt ?
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Old 11-14-13, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Adrianinkc View Post
DI2>everything
You've ridden EPS?
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Old 11-14-13, 12:38 PM
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Originally Posted by halfspeed View Post
You've ridden EPS?
Other than button feel, heavier, ugly battery, and hood shapes what's the difference ?
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Old 11-14-13, 01:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Elvo View Post
Red is lighter than SR
Did somebody say otherwise?
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Old 11-14-13, 01:12 PM
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utterly ridiculous. you can only compare 1st with 1st, 2nd with 2nd etc. Then you can say one brand is better in their top model. comaring 1st with 2nd and all over the place is just idiotic.
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Old 11-14-13, 01:13 PM
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OP,
Even though you are well intentioned, an ill fated exercise.
First, people's judgement about groupsets is largely qualitative...i.e. subjective....amalgam of a number of factors...ergos, shift quality, appearance, weight...even sound. You either have to isolate these or prioritize them. This sort of parametric analysis can get muddy fast.

Also, you don't speak to specific models. 2013/2014 is a new world for Sram and Shimano. Major improvements with revised Red and Ultegra/DA that leaves previous versions in the dust. Nobody can say that Super Record is better than new DA 9000 which is excellent....or even latest Red.

Good news is, all of the new stuff has made making a buying decision difficult or easy because its all so good. Not the case even a year ago.
So either distill your study to a given factor...say easiest is weight....or ride what you like or what came on the bike you like.
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Old 11-14-13, 01:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Campag4life View Post
OP,
Even though you are well intentioned, an ill fated exercise.
First, people's judgement about groupsets is largely qualitative...i.e. subjective....amalgam of a number of factors...ergos, shift quality, appearance, weight...even sound. You either have to isolate these or prioritize them. This sort of parametric analysis can get muddy fast.

Also, you don't speak to specific models. 2013/2014 is a new world for Sram and Shimano. Major improvements with revised Red and Ultegra/DA that leaves previous versions in the dust. Nobody can say that Super Record is better than new DA 9000 which is excellent....or even latest Red.

Good news is, all of the new stuff has made making a buying decision difficult or easy because its all so good. Not the case even a year ago.
So either distill your study to a given factor...say easiest is weight....or ride what you like or what came on the bike you like.
I think it's fairly obvious where the OP's personal bias lies, campy sr is sitting at #1 all by itself even though the chart allows for different brands at the same levels while record on his chart is even with red and dura ace.. if I were to assume from reading his chart I would think campy was the sheezneet and possibly SRAM would make a decent budget group... I wouldn't even consider shimano.. I mean look Ultregra is pretty much below everyone elses 2/3 tiers...and 105 is sitting way down there very close to some bottom end "performance" groups even though it is the supposed sweet spot between price and performance. I also understand that interpretations are subjective and that I'll also be opening a can of worms with this next statement.. campy isn't any better, it's just prettier.
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Old 11-14-13, 01:27 PM
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typical campy fanboy stuff.
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Old 11-14-13, 01:41 PM
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Lol... I've never touched a Campy setup =p. I've tried Shimano 105 and SRAM Rival. What I based this chart off of is reading through many, many threads of "Athena or Ultegra" "Rival or Centaur" "Red or DA" etc, etc. I put SR up top because of what I've read from various forums. People seem to have a tendancy to treat SR as the coup de grace on a bike that would considered a piece of art. My personal aesthetic preference lies with Campy. From a performance standpoint my experience with only 2 groupsets can't say much lol. I prefered Rival based on ergo and shifting style. My chart was based on heated forum battles that I only observed. I was hoping this thread would spark more conversation so that I can learn more =)
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Old 11-14-13, 01:47 PM
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I'm a huge fan of Campy but really no group will put you at a major disadvantage and they all have pro's and con's.

Having used all 3 groups my biggest reason for liking Campy more is the feel and the fact that after 4 years it still shifts like the day I bought it. My other 2 have needed adjusting after a few months.
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Old 11-14-13, 01:48 PM
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Great. Now I gotta *****can my 6800 and go Campy. Just great.
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