Strengths: Stability, cornering, value for money, dropper post
Weaknesses: front wheel can wander a bit on steep techy climbs
I was riding a Yeti 575 but it had a few characteristics I wasn't happy with. Was looking at my options and had bought an Anthem advanced for racing. I loved it so much I though I'd take my chances on a Trance and I'm so glad I did! This bike is so stable on fast, rough and loose terrain it's amazing. Unlike my last bike which used to skip around, the rear end on this thing stays so stable, hugging the ground, and not loosing traction at all. It also doesn't mind getting a bit of airtime, with the 5" of rear travel being taken up smoothly and not bottoming out once.
The value for money is absolutely unbeatable. I got mine as a runout model (2013 bikes already on there way) and for the price I paid, you wouldn't be able to buy my previous bikes frame! The dropper post is a welcome addition to the build, making it easy to get back on fast and loose descents. Mine has the Talas 140/125 fork, and while I was dubious that 15mm would make a difference, it does seem to help on steep climbs. In 140mm mode, the front tyre does tend to wander a bit.
For anyone that doesn't have endless funds, or just wants an exceptionally good bike without having to spend a fortune, look no further. I can't say enough good things about this bike, given the choice of riding the Trance or my Yeti which cost twice as much, I would pick the trance every day of the week (hence selling the other bike)
Strengths: Telescopic seat post rocks.
Extremely stable bike.
RP23 shock allows for a LOT of tweaking.
Changeable front fork 120mm-150mm is awesome.
Decent weight considering the telescopic seat post.
Really good groupo and brakes.
Standard wheels are strong and light.
Weaknesses: Would have prefered tapered toptube, but it's no biggy.
Nightmare to shorten the seatbpost cabling!
Can't imagine why a recreational rider would pay more for a different branded bike. Whats not to like?
Bike Setup: changed seat
cut handlebars 690mm to 660mm
tubeless setup (Stans)
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: June 8, 2012
Strengths: This is for the 2012 Trance X frameset with similar but improved spec to the X0.
Feels solid yet nimble. Tapered overdrive headtube + thru axle fork is stiff and takes stuff i used to get pinged around by. I love the Giant dropper post, XT kit is bang on. Weight is good for a non carbon beast that inspires confidence and gets.me to the tops of hills quicker than my ibis, specialised and ellsworth buddies (ellsworth epiphany used to me mine which i loved but i love this more)
Weaknesses: I've seen better looking bikes and the straight top tube is a love/hate thing. I've had no issues with it, but i suppose standover clearance could be better. My frame was a European import (uk sold out) which is lovely but only came with fox float r rear shock. Doesn't bother me as it doesn't bob around and it's one less thing to think about before hitting descents hard, but would've been nice to have top spec there.
This is a great bike. I was lucky that Giant ran out of stock because it meant my lbs went on a mission to find a frame and build me one with a great spec. It rides brilliantly. I feel more confident hitting rough stuff hard, it corners brilliantly, it feels strong yet light enough to get up 'big ol' 'ills' without any problem. Maestro suspension is smooth. I'm used to Ellsworth's ICT suspension which is awesome and this feels as good if not better. This has already done some all mountain trails, xc blasts around woods, trail centre blue/red and blacks and it eats all of them for breakfast. Ace!
Giant Trance x large frame in midnight blue
fox talas rlc 110-140 kashima forks
fox float r rear shock
shimano xt gears and brakes with 180mm rotors
easton haven bar and 70mm stem
mavic xm819 rims on hope pro 2 evo hubs
shwalbe nobby nic tubeless tyres
Giant dropper seatpost with remote
sdg bel air saddle
giant grips (which are lovely by the way)
Buy if you want an amazing 5" travel trail bike that'll do pretty much anything you want it to and slap a smile on your face, especially as they are better value for money than most other bikes of this calibre.
Don't but if you want a sub 25lbs xc race bike or don't want to be seen on a big brand bike.
Similar Products Used: Ellsworth epiphany mk 1
Ellsworth truth (unsure of the year)
Have slung a leg over a 2011 specialised camber elite 29er and a 2011 gt i-drive
Also owned several hardtails but i wouldn't class them as similar products
Strengths: This review is for the 2011 Trance X aftermarket frameset pkg, not the complete bike.
The 2011 Maestro is by one on of the better suspension designs out there. This bike climbs extremely well and descends like it has an extra inch of travel. This is the first bike I've ridden where I was able to use all of it's travel on all but light XC rides. Even though the rear would 'bottom', I never felt it.
Weight for the frame is decent for an XL size aluminum bike with my build fluxuating between 28 and 29.5lbs depending on tires used. It's always been tough for me to get any FS trail bike below 30lbs due to the size of frame I require and my build preferences.
I should note here that I copied Adam Craig's build from the outset with a Fox Float 140 FIT RLC instead of the 125mm fork that comes on the completes. This slackened the HA out a bit and raised the BB just enough so I wasn't smacking pedals.
Weaknesses: Standover. I would have liked to have used a 150mm fork, but with the straigh as an arrow TT it took away that option unless I wanted to smack my junk every time I dismounted.
The verdict is still out on the Pressfit BB. It's lighter for certain and allows for a much wider and stiffer lower link, but until chainguide companies catch up and offer something up for that standard I'll be on the fence about it.
Giant needs to work on the finish of their bikes. You have to be carefull as paint will chip easily.
You can't go wrong with this bike for the price. IMO the new Maestro works better on all but big drops over Intense's VPP and is the closest thing I've come across to the DW Link.
Granted, you lose a bit in the paint finish department but it's a small sacrifice for the quality of the suspension design. It just works and works like it should.
The Trance X frameset is now in my Top 5 bikes of all time, and I've owned over 35 to date.
Similar Products Used: Santa Cruz Nomad (2007), Ibis Mojo (2008), Giant Reign X frameset (2008), Intense Tracer VP (2009), Banshee Spitfire (2010).
Bike Setup: XL frame with green linkage. 2011 Fox Float FiT RLC (150mm shimmed down to 140mm) with Kashima, 15mm axle. Easton Haven and Shimano XT wheelsets. 4" drop Gravity Dropper Turbo. Shimano XTR 'Trail' crankset. XX rear cassette. XO shifters/derailleurs. Avid Elixir CR brakes. 2.5 Minion DHF EXO set up tubeless with a 2.2 Crossmark UST on the rear. XTR pedals.
a Cross Country Rider
from Prince George BC
Date Reviewed: November 1, 2011
Strengths: Great technical climbing and downhill performance. Exceptionaly low frame weight and great strenght.
Weaknesses: Pivot bearings need greasing or replacement with Enduro bearings every couple years. That's it!
I can climb very techical rooty climbs like they are nothing. Ride it like a 29er though challenging terain keeping my speed up with the Mestro doing its job. Today I road the 27 lb Trance and did a 6 foot drop with a nice tranny that I had only done on bigger bikes before.I owned a 25lb 29er fully and found when I compared lap times on our race course they were within seconds and the tires were the same. I kept the bike that put a bigger smile on my face. If you have only tried the stock trance XO at 27 lbs it is a incredible bike at 23.5lb.
Similar Products Used: FSR including brian, Turner pivots (old), VPP and DW bikes
Bike Setup: One at 23.5 lbs biult tough with Xlite wheelset, 68 degree HA, Raceface Ti sl crankset & Carbon post, tubeless ready Pythons and XO grip shift . The other Trance has a Float 140mm by 15mm up front, tougher rims, and 2.3 tires at about 27 lbs.
a Cross Country Rider
from Manchester England
Date Reviewed: May 25, 2011
Strengths: Really lighht for the travel. Very good value, i paid only £2090 in the sale. handles amazingly. Frame finish is amazing looking
Weaknesses: The handle bar grips it came with were a joke.
This is the best bike i have ever owned. It amazing can take it down just about any thing, but more amazing is that it climes better than a scott spark. Nice XTR bits and Race face finishing kit. No paint on the frame is also a nice touch, it both anodized and polished to make it look really cool in a two tone silver effect. It jus feels so good to pedal n no bob, but super good on both small and big hits :)
Similar Products Used: Scott spark, trek fuel ex9 trek fuel ex 8, loads of other bikes over the years
Bike Setup: stack apart from shimano XT duel control levers and Saint barkes. Purple sunline V1 bars and grips
a Weekend Warrior
from Belo Horizonte/MG, Brazil
Date Reviewed: April 7, 2011
Strengths: Very light for a aluminium 5" frame/bike (around 11,2Kg). Climbs very very
well, like a goat. Insane when descent. Excelent maestro suspension system, independent
of the terrain. Literally eats roots, rocks. Looks great!
The perfect bike for my trail riding. Purchase by parts just to get a dream bike. So... let's run to the hills!!!
Favorite Trail: Green hell (Inferno verde). See it at www.bikely.com
Duration Product Used: 1 Year
Purchased At: Ebay (by parts)
Similar Products Used: Gary fisher sugar 3+; Scott aspect FX-25.
Bike Setup: Frame: 2009 Giant trance X-3, shock upgrade to Fox RP-23 Boost Valve;
Suspension: Fox FIT RLC 120mm;
Wheelset: Shimano XTR M995, tubeless;
Shimano XT crankset and rear derailleur (shadow);
Shimano XTR rotors, 160mm (both);
Shimano XTR front derailleur;
Shimano XT brake system;
Shimano XT rapid fire;
Cateye stada 8 and garmin etrex vista;
Amoeba carbon/titanium seat;
KCNC seatpost, handlebar and barends;
KCNC pulleys in red;
Yban titanium chain;
Crankbros candy pedals;
Tires: rockt Ron 2.1 on front and Kenda Smallblock 8 on rear, both kevlar, mounted without innertube, but with Joe’s No Flat.
a Cross Country Rider
from Denver, CO, USA
Date Reviewed: February 13, 2011
Strengths: 5" Travel, head tube angles made it agile, and steady.
Weaknesses: weight - going for shorter travel to shed weight for racing.
Giant makes a fantastic bike for the money. This one I built up with a lot of my components, but am eying an Anthem X1 W - which is spec'd out NICELY. Will review that once I get it.
Similar Products Used: Specialized Ground Control, Cannondale super V
Bike Setup: Stock
a Cross Country Rider
from New York
Date Reviewed: December 14, 2010
Strengths: -Great suspension design
-Amazing spec for the price
Weaknesses: -None worth mentioning
I wrote one of the first reviews about the Trance XO here a few years back (scroll down to the bottom, under "AS"). It's been 3 years and I have to say this bike is still pretty darn amazing. I ride pretty hard and over the past few years destroyed the rear derailluer and had to have the shock and fork rebuilt -twice. Despite the abuse, every pivot on this bike remains smooth and tight. The bike still rides like a dream and rocks on technical trails and smooth singletrack (when you lock out the suspension.) If you're interested in this bike and your trails consists of rocky and rooty technical singletrack - BUY IT!
Similar Products Used: Intense, Specialized, Titus
Bike Setup: Maxxis High Rollers, Easton Stem 90mm
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: June 21, 2010
Strengths: Great looks, great forgiving ride when on steep, fast and lumpy or rocky descents. Light - for uphill or lugging. Really pleased overall despite a couple of gripes below.
Weaknesses: 1. Avid juicy 7 brakes are brilliant but adjusters seem to be intermittent and front brake sometimes fades a bit.
2. Bottom bracket worn out after 467 miles over 18 months and needed replaced. Not impressed. I have a Marin Bear vally for commuting to work and have done ~15,000 miles before asking the bike shop to change it...
Top bike for riding and lugging. Am going to send the bottom bracket back to Giant and will complain !
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: May 21, 2010
Strengths: Shiny! Delorean-like. Great top-line components for the price I paid and handles like a dream. MAestro suspension and Fox - a pair made in heaven.
Weaknesses: Crashing too much - almost on every ride due to the over confidence this bike gives me. I'm no spring chicken but I feel like one when I ride this thing - especially on the downhills. It floats over the rough stuff and I often forget that I have slow down to make the turns at the bottom. Seriously, this bike is bad to the bone! It climbs like a champ and is unstoppable.
Don't buy the Trance X0 if you don't like to crash. This bike handles so well that I find myself screaming downhills and climbing steep hills more than my experience or ability. Being an ex-Motocross racer as a kid, it brought back fond memories when I thought I was invincible and foolish. Now I'm just foolish and my wife won't let me ride alone for the fear I'll be laying in some ditch with a broken leg (or worse) and she won't know where I am! Such a great bike.
a Cross Country Rider
from Budapest, Hungary
Date Reviewed: February 15, 2010
Strengths: Well designed frame, very comfortable, I'm 6'1 and the Large frame size is perfect, quality parts, great climber, looks cool.
Weaknesses: Sometimes the Mavic ST has some weird noise under pressure, i think the spokes are rubbing each other, but that's not Giants fault.
Best bike i ever had and perfect for all day ride, climbs better than my previous carbon Trek Fuel even if i leave the shock open. Feels like the bike has no limits (it could be dangerous sometimes) bottomless feeling on downhill's, great design and looks. The weight is 12.3kg, 27 lbs. witch is great for a 5 inch trail bike with aluminum frame, but i think it feels lighter than is actual. I'm happy with the bike and i recommend it to anyone.
Sorry if this has been covered, but I haven't been able to find anything on the process. Just got a Trance X0 and it is my first 29er and tubless ready bike. I am curious as to what I need to do to make it tubless?
Since they are TL ready do I just put the valve stem in, put Stan's in and pump it ... Read More »
I have a creak when shifting weight front and back on the seat, happens every pedal-stroke. If I clean the parts lightly grease and torque, the noise goes away for a ride or so then comes back. I presume the issue is dirt getting in there. Anybody have good ways of stopping the dirt incursion or oth ... Read More »
I'm looking for some advices... I read a lot of reviews of the 2 bikes, but, I never read an impartial review about theses bikes 1vs1. Old Trance ride love their new Transition, Transition rider don't seem to have a lot to say to tell why this bike it that hot... Well, I'm tired of reading "whatever ... Read More »