The new Banshee Viento is the ultimate versatile all mountain hardtail. Constructed with new custom lightweight ½ RAD tube set, the Viento’s chassis is light and solid for blasting through rocky sections and exclusive internally ribbed seat and chain stays deliver the power to the ground with authority.
I'm easing into this bike - so far the only disappointment is that it leaves no room for excuses. It goes where I point it, I'm taking lines I wouldn't have before, and it wants me to sprint. It's really fun to ride & provides a solid transfer of power from pedals to the dirt. It makes me happy and looks pretty good too.
have reviewed this bike before but wanted to write one more cause i weight 250lbs and have beat on this thing and it's still going strong. wish the original paint wouldn't have chipped so fast because it was a beautiful frame with a bought it with the black chrome color but oh well it's all go and no show otherwise it gets 5 chilis
a Weekend Warrior
from Santiago, Chile
Date Reviewed: April 21, 2011
Strengths: Strong, really stiff, great details in every way, lightweight for what it is and for the purpose it is built for.
Weaknesses: -a bit pricey (I bought mine second-hand)
-I would have preferred a 3-4º difference between seatpost and headset angles. Too much "effective top tube" effect.
It is built for something more on the Trail/All Mountain side... This is not the typical XC frame. It reminds me in some way the Santacruz Chameleon, although this frame takes full advantage of the cockpit space and minimizes the rest, thanks to the extra large (a bit exagerated) effective top tube measure. axle to axle distance is minimal at the same time, so this bike has much to do with catwalks (wheelies), little jumps but aggresive XC climbing ability as well.
Similar Products Used: nothing like this -there is nothing like this
Bike Setup: Sektor u-turn fork, SLX/Saint drivetrain, supra wheels w/novatec hubs, kenda tires
a Cross Country Rider
from Brisbane, QLD, Australia
Date Reviewed: February 1, 2011
Strengths: Responsive and tough. Feels like a mini DH bike on the corners, but also climbs like a light weight XC bike.
Weaknesses: Could be a bit stiff for longer enduro rides.
The maiden voyage of the Viento was very enjoyable! It was stiff on the rear, so any small lips or jumps it easily launched. Landings were not as rough as I expected (being a hardtail). Cornering it felt like a DH bike. I don’t have wide bars on it, but it just felt great and tracked well on the corners. Could be the length of the bike and the rake of the forks I’m not sure.
It climbed surprisingly well. I’m used to riding carbon XC bikes, and I thought this may impact on its climbing ability. But when I cranked the pedals over it immediately responded and took off.
Bike Setup: The running gear is all SRAM X0 with the Avid/SRAM X0 brakes. I’ve got Fox 120mm forks and DT Swiss rims and Hope hubs.
from london england
Date Reviewed: December 2, 2010
Strengths: super stiff, tough, confidence inspiring hardtail. a real weapon in the right hands
Weaknesses: front mech cable stop points in the wrong direction for shimano xt. still works ok, but looks a bit suspect.
great frame. mine set up for all day epics on the surrey hills, unwind the u-turn for welsh rocky downhills. i went a size smaller and run a medium (6ft tall rider) for a super chuckable ride, can still hit up the dirtjumps on the way home. the ultimate all rounder.
Strengths: Excellent construction, great attention to detail, welds are awesome. Love the S-bend seatstays. I run 2.35 tires and still have plenty of room. Dropouts are extra strong. Holds a straight line like no other and climbs like a beast.
Weaknesses: none really except the cable guide for the front derailleur is pointed in an odd way, but this has no effect on performance. Seatpost diameter is misprinted on the website but they include a quality seatpost.
Had this bike a week, and already put about 100 miles on it. 50 on and 50 off road. This bikes corners like crazy, just point it where you want to go and it follows. I noticed it's easier to wheelie and straight line ride because it's so balanced. It was ready to build up out of the box, no need to face the BB, just some grease. This frame enabled me to finally climb a huge hill, (on platform pedals) that I couldn't do on my Hardrock. It's a climbing machine, and that's with my AM setup weighing in at 32lbs. I'm sure I could get it down to 24 with a lighter fork and lighter wheels. The paint job is sick, I got the black anodized and no chips or scratches yet, maybe the other guy shouldn't "throw" it in the trunk and respect it. If you can afford it, BUY IT!!! No regrets!
Similar Products Used: Specialized Hardrock. 2004, 2009
Bike Setup: Kenda Excavator 2.35 tires
Saint rear hub M810
Halo Tornado 36h rim rear
Hope Pro 2 disk hub front
Sun Equalizer 31mm 32h rim front
Saint rear derailleur
Race Face Deus XC 09' crankset
Shimano XT M-770 cassette
SRAM PC-991 Cross-step chain
Titec Hell Bent handlebar
FSA Extreme Pro headset
DMR V12 Mag white pedals
Avid BB7 185mm front & rear
a Cross Country Rider
from San Jose, CA USA
Date Reviewed: August 5, 2009
Strengths: All around, great frame, looks great (see weakness) ride great. So far as other reviews it seems strong.
Weaknesses: paint job (I have the black chrome) chips very easily.
for the price it's a great buy and I'd highly recommend it but you have to be careful for the paint job. Wish I'd known how easy the paint chipped before I tossed it in the trunk. By comparison my Intense 6.6 has been knocked around 10X more and is barely scratched.
a Weekend Warrior
from Eastern Norway
Date Reviewed: June 18, 2009
Strengths: Good price, very stiff frame, tracks very good, great paint job, solid and reasonably light. Good clearance everywhere, and all threads/faces were good straight out of the box. Nice susprise that it comes with a seatpost. Ample tire clearence.
Weaknesses: None yet. It's a pretty basic hardtail design, so there's not much to do wrong. The only thing is that I can't understand why the right chainstay isn't painted.
I wanted an "XC" bike with a slightly less agressive geometry and riding position than an ordinary racing hardtail, and I needed a stiff and durable bike for a 220 pound rider. This is spot on! Great bike! And VERY versatile. This is one "do it all" bike. Takes me back to the time when there were no "subcategories" to "mountain bikes", and a "mountain bike" was just a bike for riding off road that you could take absolutely anywhere. The Viento is such a bike. I couldn't be happier.
Similar Products Used: Assorted "norba geometry" XC frames and FS trail bikes, but nothing quite like this.
Bike Setup: Rock Shox Reba @115mm, XT M775 hubs, DT Revolution spokes w/alum. nipples, Mavic XC717 Disc rims, Schwalbe Racing Ralph Evo 2.25" tires, Thomson Elite stem and seatpost,
Syntace VRO Ecoriser bars, Selle Italia SLR XC saddle, XT 770 derailleurs and shifters, Formula Oro K18 180/160 brakes, SLX triple crankset, XT 770 cassette, XTR Chain, FSA Orbit XL-II headset and Shimano PD-M540 pedals.
a Cross Country Rider
from Bend, Oregon
Date Reviewed: April 16, 2009
Strengths: Stiff, strong very high quality frame. Superb finish (anodized Black in my case). The Geometry allows for a longer travel fork (130mm in my case). Rides like a dream...truly point and shoot... Great climber...and superb on the downhill...Not the lightest XC frame, but it is more of an All Mountain Hardtail. I don't miss my full suspension one bit.
Weaknesses: None thus far....If it were lighter, it would not be as strong...
Similar Products Used: Ventana Frames, Jamis, etc....
Bike Setup: Banshee Viento Frame Size Medium - Black Anodized Finished
2008 Shimano XT Wheelset with Maxxis Ignitor 2.35 UST Tires
2007 Shimano XT Cranks with 2008 Chainrings
XT Shadow Rear
XT Brakes + Levers (2008)
XT Rapid Fire Shifters (2008)
Chris King Headset
Thomson Elite Post
Thomson X-4 Stem 90mm 0 Degree
WTB Rocket V Titanium Seat
Hope Skewers and Seat post clamp
ODI Rogue Lock-On Grips
Raceface Carbon Riser Bar
SRAM 991 Chain
a Cross Country Rider
from Clarksville, TN, USA
Date Reviewed: January 29, 2009
Strengths: Heavy duty welds and strong aluminum frame. Total weight w/pedals under 27lbs.
Weaknesses: I haven't experienced any problems so far.
I love this bike. When hitting the local shops for what they considered a "high end" hardtail, I just didn't find something that caught my eye. I knew I wanted something other than what everyone else might be riding. Read about Banshee and checked out their site. I contacted the guys at Rbikes and was pumped after getting off the phone with them. They sell every color offered by Banshee and even upgraded a few compenants at no additional cost. This is a strong frame that has handled everything I've thrown at it so far (to include snow/ice covered trails in OH two weeks ago). At 6'3", 215lbs, I'm not too worried about weight but I do feel like this is a "light" bike. I'm pretty sure this thing will hold up for anyone looking for a solid XC hardtail.
Bike Setup: X.9 build kit with RockShox Recon Race fork.
a Weekend Warrior
from Camlachie, ON, Canada
Date Reviewed: August 25, 2008
Strengths: The welds on the frame are strong and the bike is built to be ridden. Light at only 4.3lbs this bike is an awesome choice for all mountain riding and can accommodate a wide range of fork sizes. It climbs amazingly well with a 140mm fork on the front. Built and rides solid.
Weaknesses: The paint scratches on rocks ;)
But seriously, the only weakness I can find is the angle of the cable stop on the seat tube for the front dérailleur, which is angled to the non-drive side of the frame. If your FD pulls from the drive side, the cable will look wonky coming out of the cable stop, but otherwise perform with no issues whatsoever.
Overall this product is by far the best frame I have ever ridden - bar none. If you're looking for a light yet strong All Mountain Oriented frame, this is a frame to seriously consider.
Bike Setup: 2008 Fox Vanilla R 140mm
FSA OS-140 stem
RaceFace Evolve XC flatbars
2008 Avid BB7s with Avid Speed Dial SL Levers
RaceFace Evolve XC X-type Crank with CB Mallet C's
2007 Sram x9 FD & RD
XT Centrelock hubs
Cane Creek S-8 Headset
Sun Rims DS-1 XC
a Weekend Warrior
Date Reviewed: July 22, 2008
Strengths: absolutely beautiful frame! stiff, light and strong. Banshee bikes returns phone calls and emails quite quickly. Banshees website and blogs offer plenty of information for someone searching to purchase one of their bikes. Like the Viento is advertised, it does soften small trail vibrations. climbs like a goat on speed and descends even better.
Weaknesses: Nit-picking here: the rear brake mounts only fit certain types of i.s. calipers. ie: my magura marta i.s. caliper wouldn't fit. I had to buy a post-mount caliper with an i.s. adapter. also, their website can be a little suspect. It is a good site for information but some of it is wrong. ie: the seatpost size was incorrectly printed in their bike geometry section (but they do ship their frames with correct seatpost binders and seatposts which I had no idea they did)
I couldn`t stop smiling and laughing the first time a rode the Viento. It was so fun! Unbelievable stiffness in the frame.
but here is the rub-Either buy the bike as a complete bike or buy the frame, THEN buy the components to fit! do NOT do what I did and buy the components first based on information from Banshees' and other websites. it will only compicate matters.
I give it 5 chilis for value even though it was $700.00 for the frame only, but it is completely worth it.
5 chilis for an overall rating despite the sketchy info on banshees' website.
this is a frame for someone who still loves the feel of a hardtail. You cannot accelerate and hammer on a full-suss like you can on a hardtail. Those who know, know. Buy it if your trails consist of smooth flowy singletrack.
I would stay away from this frame if you live in a place with lots of roots and big rocks, a full-sus will perform better on that kind of trail.
If you are in the market for a sweet, stiff, light-weight hardtail frame that can you can race on in the morning and then fly down the local trails in the afternoon then I encourage you to find a dealer that will let you try this bike out. you will not be disappointed!
Bottom line-you will fly down the trails on this bike and wonder why you waited this long to have a bike like this!
Similar Products Used: cove stiffee set-up as an all-mountain bike. honestly I don't even think I can compare the Cove to my Banshee. The stiffness of the Banshee frame makes my Cove frame feel like a wet noodle.
Bike Setup: set-up for more trail/ all-mountain riding.
426 revelation air u-turn, magara marta brakes, sram x.9 derailleurs and thumb shifters, sram cassette, race face atlas crankset and mavix xm819 ust.wheelset w/ xt hubs.
a Cross Country Rider
from Las Vegas, Nevada
Date Reviewed: April 24, 2007
Strengths: Perfect geometry, excellent craftsmanship, best riding hardtail I have ridden
This is the best hardtail I have ever ridden. The curved seatstays perform as promised to reduce abuse from rear wheel obstacle impact. The frame is bomb proof but not insanely heavy, with the right components it can easily be a race bike. The geometry is perfect for all day rides or cross county races. Lastly, and not as important but still impressive, the mercury finish is sexy.
Similar Products Used: Salsa Moto Rapido, Yeti ARC
Bike Setup: Fox fork, race face carbon bars, thomson stem, xtr tubeless wheels and sram xo, etc.
from Escondido, CA
Date Reviewed: February 6, 2007
Strengths: Strong, light, stiff, absorbs trail vibrations very well, beautiful paint job, nice lines, (the list goes on)
Weaknesses: The cable mount for the front derailleur (on the seat tube) is angled the wrong way for an XT derailleur. No performance hit, just a nit pick.
Flat out awesome. I haven't ridden a hard tail like this since I had my Litespeed racer a few years ago. I just switched from my Intense Tracer and I am in love with the Viento. It climbs super well, it corners without a complaint, and it tracks perfectly. Excellent power transfer - there really seems to be zero flex. One thing I noticed was the fact that it isn't a harsh ride. I thought that it might be tough to go back to a hard tail after riding the Intense, but I was super surprised with the Viento. It does a great job soaking up the little bumps and trail vibrations.
I can't recommend this frame more... I wish I could give it 6 chilis!