The Shimano XT SL-M780-I 10 Rapidfire Plus shifters easily convert to either a double or triple crankset mode with the simple turn of a screw on the left shifter. The shifters are mounted directly to the brakelevers using Shimano's Ispec technology. Unique 2-way cable release accommodates individual riding styles or shifting (index finger or thumb.)
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: May 20, 2011
Strengths: Looks great, easy to dial with XT 9 speed gearset, smooth and effortless shifting, light weight
I actually wanted the XT shifters but no stock so splashed out on the XTR 9 speed I am pretty glad I did on balance. The precise and instantaneous shifting with Jagwire Ripcord is a significant improvement from the LX 9 speed shifters they replaced, it is very useful to go from top to bottom gear in two or three clicks. The adjustable levers are another great feature allowing perfect placement with the brake levers. I have also never understood the purpose of the indicator windows on shimano shifters these are thankfully missing. I do think they are over priced, I don't know how two little metal and plastic pods can cost $180! Also I didn't give 5 chillies because I haven't used them for long yet so can't comment on the reliability.
Strengths: Quick, durable, quality. Love the double-push & bi-direction on the "finger" shifter.
Weaknesses: softer push than SRAM
these shifters are unbelievable. I actually have them setup with a rapid-rise derailleur and love using my thumb to push the lever once/twice for downshift.
These shift fast (instant release) and smoothly. They don't have the crisper feel of the SRAM, but that's subjective.
Finally, the ability to adjust the lateral location on the bar is great: allowing a tighter or more open feel with the lever.
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: January 2, 2008
Strengths: Light, 4 shifts in one direction and 2 in the other, shifts quick, you can use your thumb or finger now to shift forward trigger, easy to re-cable, some right to left on the bar adjustability
Weaknesses: Very rarely it will not shift as if trigger is not catching, seems to be much more sensitive to cables as I have to replace them more often, the price is very high(Shimano XTR and SRAM XO)
This is for XTR M970 Shifter Pods. These are great shifters, but they are sensitive to cable wear. Much more so than my older XT and XTR shifters. The XTR R. Derailler may be partly to blame as the spring on it seems to be weaker and I am using a medium cage instead of a long cage. Not sure what affect that may have on shifting. I will say I like it better thant he SRAM XO, but the SRAM stuff seems great too. The SRAM XO seems to shift more deliberately, but the return spring for trigger seems slow and the shifting seemed just slightly slower than the new XTR stuff. Also, the one gear at a time on the second XO trigger is annoying and it seems you have to push through a longer range of motion to get the XO to shift. Honestly, I like the XTR better, but I could be happy with either one. If it were not for SRAM, I would probably have to use the crappy Shimano dual control stuff.
a Weekend Warrior
from Orlando, FL, USA
Date Reviewed: July 10, 2007
Strengths: Fit, form, and funtion. Design, adjustability, looks, and weight. Shifting options...
Bottom line is that these shifter pods are freakin amazing!! The way they look on the handle bar and the option to shift 1, 2, 3, or 4 gears at a time is incredible!!! I don't know what else to say... I find myself rushing home just to ride my bike. XTR has made my ride that much more enjoyable!! Also since its most made out of aluminum, I expect it to last a very long time... You can't go wrong with XTR!!!!
Bike Setup: 2004 Raleigh Ram 2.0 with full XTR, RockShox 318 Tora and Rear SID, Avid Juicy Carbons, Truvativ Team Carbon Riser, Cane Creek Solo head set, Titec Pluto Carbon seat post, WTB Speed V saddle, and Jagwire cables. Plus a few other things...
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: June 26, 2007
Strengths: Light, smooth and the ultimate in reliability
The best pair of shifters I have ever used. Put it like this, I've used them for 5 years on the same bike and the gear XTR (including the shifters) has not missed one beat ever ! I use my bike daily for work (not just occasionally for work, but EVERY day!) and on trails at the weekend. You can't get much better testing than this. I am building a new bike at the moment and will be trying the M970 components on that. If I get the value for money I got out of these shifters, I will be a happy man for the next 5 years !
First off - it looks like there are some reviews of the Dual Controls on here ... This a review of the '01-'02 XTR shift pods.
I have used these pods on two bikes, now. I have had them over 4 years and ridden them over 9,000 miles -- how many shifts is that, anyway? I have yet to service them(!?!). Maybe a squirt of Pro Gold, now and then. Say what you want, but that is pretty reliable, imhb. As long as my cables aren't impaired, they still have that unbelievably light action -- when people ride my bike, that is ALWAYS the first comment. I have thought about going to SRAM XO - but I just love Rapid Rise. I have heard nothing but good, though - several of my friends use it and they say it's every bit as good. But, me, I'll stick with my pods 'till they fail -- or I do. Happy Trails!
Bike Setup: '03 Titus Racer X w/ all the chi-chi stuff...
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: July 24, 2004
Strengths: They look great and shift very well(SL-952)
Weaknesses: Cracking on plastic body. For a top of the line set of shifters I expected a lot more. If you have a set I'll bet there's an 90% chance you'll see cracks on the plastic body. I had one set fall apart(craked open) when it was first installed at my local bike shop. I thought that it was their fault but seeing the cracks on these and others installed on my friends bikes, it looks like it's Shimano's fault.
Very good performing but absolutely lousy choice of plastic. I would have expected more from the Shimano's R&D. If they had an 800 number I would call and return this item. I'm switching to SRAM X.0 's The other XTR components seem to be pretty good.
Bike Setup: Full XTR, Litespeed Tanasi, Moots laid-back seat post, Moots Ti-beam stem w/ Moots Ti straight handlebar, Triple Ti Eggbeater pedals, Mavic Crossmax Wheels, Hayes Hydraulic Disk brakes
a Cross Country Rider
from Bend, Oregon
Date Reviewed: July 16, 2004
Strengths: Looks great. Ability to brake and shift at the same time. But don't be fooled...
Weaknesses: Terrible shifting! Persistent, ongoing problem with Ghost Shifting.
Don't get caught up in all the hype like I did! These shifters have NOT operated smoothly since first installed on my Santa Cruz Blur. Way overated - Shimano is only successfully selling these things because A). They look cool B.) The brake lever shift is a breakthrough concept in function (great idea, but BAD shifting prformance). Shimano... you have a long way to go before I could ever recommend this product. I have had my bike in to three different (and reputable) bike mechanics here in Bend, Oregon only to go back out on the trail and experience the same problem. These XTR shifters, and front/rear derailur(s) need constant adjustment, and even then never really work right. I am not the best guy on the mountain but I did have high expectations for the new XTR, and they have failed the real world test miserably! I am dumping these components and buying SRAM X.0 or X.9. Goodbye Shimano, hello SRAM! (Note: The dealer who sold me this bike tell's me my "rock Ring" is the problem, but I have not met a mechanic that has agreed with this diagnosis. I believe the dealer does not have enough experience with XTR to know they really don't perform that well. The last time I took the bike back to get worked on, he was frustrated and tired of seeing me for the same problem. The solution...? Don't sell XTR!).
Bike Setup: SC Blur, 5th element rear shock, Manitou front fork, race face "rock ring"
from Charlotte, NC
Date Reviewed: June 26, 2004
Strengths: shifts good, reliable, durable, easy to dial in. looks good too
Weaknesses: shifts good....not great, takes a thumb and a finger to operate. Finger has to come off the brake lever to operate. Too expensive and not worth the money you spend, overated!
XTR is over rated, too expensive, a bunch of hype, and a complete waste of your money...look into other manufactures before you chose XTR. See note below.
I installed the SRAM Attack Trigger shifters on my Heckler a year ago. After one ride I was completely sold on them and knew without a doubt that the $49.95 Sram Attack Trigger Shifter was better than the $149.95 XTR Trigger Shifters. But I wanted to see how they would hold up over time before I purchased another set for my Blur. Here it is a year later, I've yanked all the XTR pods off my all my bikes and sold that junk on ebay and installed a $69.95 SRAM Rocket Trigger Shifter on my Blur and another $49.95 Sram Attack Trigger Shifter on my Jamis.
These absolutely Rock! They shift clean, instantly, makes better since, because you never have to move your finger from the brake and your grip on the handle bar never has to change and if you've ever blazed down a hill at full speed and found yourself in a corner where you need to brake and shift at the same time in a split second to set up for a climb....well the SRAM just simply works for your, where as the XTR shifters work against you.
My recommendation, get a set of $49.95 Attacks, try them if you don't like them you haven't lost much money, but I can say without a doubt you'll never go back to XTR shifters.
Similar Products Used: SRAM Attack and Rocket Trigger Shifters
Bike Setup: Blur, Mavic Crossmax SL, Avid Disc Brakes Mechanical, Time Atac carbon pedals, Easton carbon monkey lite SL bar, Easton carbon seatpost, New RaceFace LP Turbine crank that replaced the piece of XTR hollow tech junk I use to have (that's another story), Panaracer XC pro tubless tires, Chris King headset, Thompson Stem, SRAM Rocket trigger shifters To replace the overpriced XTR pod garbage this topic is about, Fox Float fork, Fox Float shock, WTB laser saddle, XTR derailleurs, Avid ti brake levers.
a Cross Country Rider
from San Diego
Date Reviewed: January 28, 2004
Strengths: Smooth precise shifting.
These shifters are the best there is. Makes the whole riding experience fun and enjoyable, which is what its all about (for me anyway). Shifting is smooth like Sade, thanks to the 4 bearings that roll like butter. The preciseness is grade A+, and I overall I couldn’t ask for a better quality component.
Bike Setup: Jekyll with: Fox Talas, Chris King, XT Drivetrain
from Cambridge, Cambs., UK
Date Reviewed: August 28, 2003
Strengths: NB - M952 STIs (Brake and Shifter Combo)
Look Weight Shifting - bearings and shift action a very big step up on at least LX (haven't run XT) - shifting is as light as clicking other shifters when there is not cable tension
Cables - pay for Ride On / GoreTex cableset and you will probably have the best shifting action to be had.
Weaknesses: How long will they continue to look nice?! (They seem to look far nicer under Studio Lights - damned marketing!
Price - they are expensive - shopping around is important (in the UK at least, mail order prices varied by almost £70 / $100). Since bought for £100 / $150ish, that's a lot...
Aside from the risk of bailing out and damaging either the shifter or brake lever (get separates if you bail a lot!) - a relatively 'cheap' upgrade.
Note 'cheap' in light of my FD and RD - no need to have topline across all drivetrain to benefit from XTR controls (though considering XTR RD now).
In this way, a very satisfying upgrade treat for non-serious/weekender types.
A good place to start especially if on the step-by-step upgrade tree - unless you are out for XTR Cranks, any other XTR part will be cheaper (barring Discs) so good psychological trick to play on oneself. You never know, a few times of "It's only £50" or Ebay bargains and you might end up with an almost-XTR Groupset!