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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just joined the other day and have read countless reviews of both bikes, but wanted a few more opinions. I guess I'm having the most trouble with which components are better between these two bikes. The prices are very close. If anyone wants to throw in their two cents I would be very appreciative.

My background:
First mountain bike, will ride some around the neighborhood and park trails, nothing too crazy. Seems like size 19 frame fits me the best that will be a constant with either bike. The Mamba felt slightly better, but I liked the Rockhopper also. Didn't notice a huge difference and that's probably because I have no frame of reference. Simply looking for the highest quality at the best price between the two.

Here are the specs and prices:

2012 Trek GF Mamba - $863.99 + tax

Shifters -Shimano Alivio M430, 9 speed

Front derailleur - Shimano Acera

Rear derailleur - Shimano Deore M591

Crank - Shimano Alivio M4308, 44/32/22

Cassette - Shimano HG20-9 11-34, 9 speed

Pedals - Wellgo ATB, boron axle, steel cage

Fork - RockShox XC32 w/coil spring, TurnKey lockout, custom G2 Geometry, 51mm offset crown, 100mm travel

Brake - Shimano M446 hydraulic disc brakes


2011 Specialized Rockhopper Comp $876.95 + tax

FRONT BRAKE - Shimano BR-M505 hydraulic disc brake, dual piston, 160mm rotor
REAR BRAKE - Shimano BR-M505 hydraulic disc brake, dual piston, 160mm rotor
BRAKE LEVERS - Shimano BR-M505 hydraulic
FRONT DERAILLEUR - Shimano Alivo, 34.9mm clamp, top swing, dual pull
REAR DERAILLEUR - Shimano Deore 9sp Shadow Long cage
SHIFT LEVERS - Shimano SL-M590 Deore trigger
CASSETTE - Shimano HG30, 9-speed, 11-34t
CRANKSET - Shimano FC-M430-8, Octalink spline
FORK - RockShox Tora TK 29 SL, magnesium lower, 32mm Cr-Mo stanchions, 1 1/8" alloy steerer, coil spring w/ preload adj., turn key damping w/ LO & external reb. adj.
 

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I just purchased my first real mountain bike just a couple weeks ago. The only reference I had was my son's '97 Specialized FSR. Friends have bikes, but I knew nothing about them.

Unlike in the past, when I do lots of research and comparisons, I went to the lsb, looked, asked questions, looked some more, tried out several models, went back and forth, then settled on the bike that felt the best.

I didn't look at price, I didn't consider "best components". I went with the bike that felt most the comfortable and would hold up in the long run. I also was very please with the level of service and knowledgable staff at the bike shop.

I figured it like this, any of the bikes in the price range that I was willing to spend would be, more or less, very similar and more that sufficient to me, being a beginner.

I am more than happy with my choice. I haven't looked back. Been riding every day. Yeah, I read many of the threads here and look at all the really nice bikes and parts, but I wouldn't change a thing on mine. All it needs it to be ridden.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I understand what you are saying. I think they both feel the same to me. I have to factor in the price for the value. It's just something I do. I've saved since 2001 for this bike.
 

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I understand what you are saying. I think they both feel the same to me. I have to factor in the price for the value. It's just something I do. I've saved since 2001 for this bike.
I understand, especially when you are dropping that kind of $$ for something.
Are both of the bikes you are considering at the same shop? Do they have a good rep?

Usually in our family, everyone does like you said, we research the crap out of something before making a purchase. We feel like if we do the proper research we will be more satisfied with the purchase and will hold on to it longer.

This time was a little different in that, of all the bikes I considered (about eight all together), each one would have been a winner. And for some reason, I was ready to get it that day.

The sales person I dealt with, an avid rider and very good mechanic, was very knowledgeable, and I felt like he was very upfront with me. He took his time and pointed out the differences of each bike I was considering, pro's and con's, and in a couple of choices steered me away from bikes that would have cost me more. I felt comfortable with his recommendations, he made sense.

It's great having choices!
 

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I just picked up my new 2012 Mamba last week. I haven't owned a bicycle in 15+ years. This is a real step up from what I remember. I've mainly ridden on paved trails with my daughter, but today I tried some fire roads and singletrack. It did great. I have no complaints except that the front shock is a bit noisy. Oh and I'm way too out of shape!
 
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