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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have seen people posting about these 2 groupos.
Lots of gushing...with some grumbles.
I have both..and put some miles on both....so here goes:

I have had the XTR12 for about 500 miles now...with a 51 cassette on a DT hub.
It shifts great.
Is it better than XTR 11? Yes....sort of...a little...but yes (more on that at the end)

The XTR12 had a rough life from the start. It's been raining a lot here...and it spent a lot of it's life in water and mud.
With about 300 miles on it...I did a 6 hour marathon in rain and lots of hub deep mud.
For the most part...it worked flawless. But, about an hour in...I snagged the RD cable where it goes in the RD on a stump, which kinked it. It still shifted fine...but hesitated going into the 10 cog ( which wasn't much of an issue). About the half way point, I fell in a rock garden and landed on the RD. It still shifted good....but made some noise when in the 2nd cog (I never used the 51 on this course). 40 miles of riding in swill, and despite the damage, continued to work pretty damn good.
After cleaning it up, I straightened the hanger, replaced the cable....and the chain was near done, so I replaced it. Back to shifting great.
And the marketing claims that it shifts a gazillion % better than anything else? Total BS

A few weeks ago I finished a Etap XX1 AXS build and have put about 100 miles on it....with 1 ride in rain and mud (but nothing like the 6 hour race)
It too shifts great.
Is it better than XX1 11 speed? Yes....sort of...a little...but yes (more on that at the end)
It took a few minutes to get used to the shape and soft touch of the shifter. It too has been flawless.
The marketing claims that people are shifting 20% more? BS...is manual shifting that hard that you don't shift?
Although I do wonder how hard I will cry if I wad that $700 RD up.....

Which groupo is better?
It's a tie. They both work so well....if there is a difference....it's .0000001%
One costs more than the other...one has a hub that you only have 3 options right now.
And I don't know which will outlast which yet...only miles will tell.

So...here's the part that a lot of people won't want to hear. But I think a lot will:

I have bikes with 12 speed XTR, 11 speed XTR and XT, XT Di2, SLX and one with lowly Deore. I also have bikes with Etap XX1 and GX11 speed.
Honestly.....they all work so well....I dare anyone to tell the difference if they were blind tested.( except for the feel and throw of the shifters)
Yes....the new XTR and AXS work a little better than the Deore...but if you ride them back to back....you will be amazed at how small that difference really is.
Things were very different 25 years ago...when there was night and day difference between top and mid-range groups....and it's a good time to own bikes.

I highly recommend owning bikes and riding them a lot.

If you can afford them....pick one and enjoy it. Or buy the next level (or 2) down...and enjoy the Hell out of that.
 

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Yes....the new XTR and AXS work a little better than the Deore...but if you ride them back to back....you will be amazed at how small that difference really is.
I've read some rubbish on forums over the years, but this is up there with the best of them. The different between electronic and manual shifting is night and day. Any level of Di2 or etap/AXS will beat any manual group every day of the week. One click and it shifts perfectly, regardless of conditions, no matter what power you are putting through the pedals, no matter how hamfisted/knackered/not concentrating the rider is, the shift is always perfect. Everyone I know who has an electronic groupset has said they aren't buying a cable one again.

Whether it is worth the extra cost is, obviously, up to the individual. But to say there is no, or little, real performance difference is just bollocks.

(I've had pretty much every drivetrain over the last 20 years, i like to think i have a decent handle on this sort of thing)
 

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As opposed a little push of a manual lever.
Is it really that hard?
What is the lever throw of a cable shift system, compared to electronic? The way a rider shifts a cable shifter has an effect on the quality of the shift especially multiple gear shifts at once. That doesn't happen with electric, you simply don't get poor shifts. What about full gas, out of the saddle shifts? Oo you get those perfect every time with cable? What about during a properly muddy ride?

Its not just abut how much effort it takes to move a shifter.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
What is the lever throw of a cable shift system, compared to electronic? The way a rider shifts a cable shifter has an effect on the quality of the shift especially multiple gear shifts at once. That doesn't happen with electric, you simply don't get poor shifts. What about full gas, out of the saddle shifts? Oo you get those perfect every time with cable? What about during a properly muddy ride?

Its not just abut how much effort it takes to move a shifter.
Read my review....I spent 6 hours in "properly muddy" race....and most of this spring.
I've been riding and racing for 30 years....
I think I also have a decent handle on this sort of thing.
You are welcome to have your opinion though....as am I
 

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Hitching a ride
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As opposed a little push of a manual lever.
Is it really that hard?
I'm with you, mayor. My bikes have been getting "worse" over the years - I now even have bikes with some SLX and 105 components! but they are better than ever. I used to be an exclusive bleeding edge high end parts guy. But now, even though I make more money than ever, my parts list wouldn't tingle the gear boner of any geek on the internet. Thanks for the report.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Tom....you're a fan of e shifting....I got that.
Honestly, I am too. Let's just agree on that part.
I have 2 e shift MTBs and 2 road bikes.
But it doesn't stop me from riding and racing cable actuated bikes.
Some people , for what ever reason, will never be a fan.
Hell...some people refuse to use gears at all....yet they ride....and some kick every one's asses at races.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I'm with you, mayor. My bikes have been getting "worse" over the years - I now even have bikes with some SLX and 105 components! but they are better than ever. I used to be an exclusive bleeding edge high end parts guy. But now, even though I make more money than ever, my parts list wouldn't tingle the gear boner of any geek on the internet. Thanks for the report.
LOL.....right?
True confession: When I was road racing a lot in the early late 90s.....I had a winter bike with Sora ( all my race bikes were Dura Ace)
I rode so many miles on that Sora bike in crap weather....more miles than any one of my "good" bikes

My go to mtb last season had a XTR shifter...but after I snapped a XTR rd...I put a XT on it and rode and raced it .$50 vs $260
But now I have a bike with a $700 RD...doh!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
And to add a brick to this spin cycle:

I tried the XX1 cassette on the XTR bike. It shifted fine on a short spin. If there was a difference...it was minute. I will do a longer ride at some point.
I can't try the XTR cassette on the Etap bike because it has Hope hubs.

I also have some KMC 12 chain coming....to see if the XTR chain hype is really a thing....or just more marketing BS
 

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high pivot witchcraft
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Great discussion. My only add is this, which is not really on point...

My XO Eagle drivetrain is the shittiest drivetrain I can recall in recent years (i.e.; the last 10 and maybe more).

I hate it.

I am going to be jumping back on the Shimano (drive)train, although I am currently undecided as between 11 and 12 speed. Jumping from 11 to 12 speed with SRAM amounted to going one step forward, and 5 steps backwards.

I am running DT 240 and 350 hubs so no issues with the microspline swapover.

I need to carefully re-read the posts above, and get some ride time in on both before deciding on this and pulling the trigger on some Shimano components, whether they be 11 or 12 speed.
 

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Ill confirm you can use XTR shifter/derailleur/chain/black crankset with x01 Eagle cassette (king hub). Only have 3 days on it from the EWS conti AR race. But it was 3 full days (6 hrs or so per day and lots of climbing).

Shifting was really good. Ive ridden a full xtr 12s setup. It was slightly smoother and faster but not more than 1/10 of a second. Which could be imaginary.

The downside is the XTR chain is eating up the cassette. Much of the black coating on the X01 cassette is faded.

If you’re mixing because of the lack of microspline driver I’d go with an eagle or X12 chain and compatible chainring.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Great discussion. My only add is this, which is not really on point...

My XO Eagle drivetrain is the shittiest drivetrain I can recall in recent years (i.e.; the last 10 and maybe more).

I hate it.

I am going to be jumping back on the Shimano (drive)train, although I am currently undecided as between 11 and 12 speed. Jumping from 11 to 12 speed with SRAM amounted to going one step forward, and 5 steps backwards.

I am running DT 240 and 350 hubs so no issues with the microspline swapover.

I need to carefully re-read the posts above, and get some ride time in on both before deciding on this and pulling the trigger on some Shimano components, whether they be 11 or 12 speed.
What, specifically, is wrong? The vast majority of problems I've heard of seem to be either user error or simply having SRAM written on it, and they've never wanted to like it...
 

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high pivot witchcraft
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It may be user error. That's an issue that is always debatable.

Regardless, I have never had the issues I have had with my XO Eagle, with any other drivetrain, including my previous SRAM 11 speeds, which I really liked.
 

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What is the lever throw of a cable shift system, compared to electronic? The way a rider shifts a cable shifter has an effect on the quality of the shift especially multiple gear shifts at once. That doesn't happen with electric, you simply don't get poor shifts. What about full gas, out of the saddle shifts? Oo you get those perfect every time with cable? What about during a properly muddy ride?

Its not just abut how much effort it takes to move a shifter.
I too have Di2 bikes, 12-speed XTR bikes, 11-speed XTR mechanical bikes, and 12-speed SRAM bikes. (Between myself, my wife and the race team I run I have 30 bikes I have to look after)

Brand new they all shift great and honestly there is pretty well zero difference in performance. Although, all will occasionally miss a shift for some reason or another. Where thing change is when the systems age, or when you ride in the rain.

On my own personal bike I have a DI2 set-up that is 4 seasons old. The derailleur has a massive number of kms (probably 20,000km). Still shifts exactly like it did when new. I have never observed that level of consistent performance from anything on the dirt.

Now, if only it worked with a cassette with a reasonable range.
 

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Great discussion. My only add is this, which is not really on point...

My XO Eagle drivetrain is the shittiest drivetrain I can recall in recent years (i.e.; the last 10 and maybe more).

I hate it.
Have you made sure the derailleur is tight in the frame? A lot of the issues with those is the derailleurs back out if your bike has a lot of chain growth. I check mine before every single ride now and some times in the middle of the ride. Really annoying but fixes the shifting issues.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
On my own personal bike I have a DI2 set-up that is 4 seasons old. The derailleur has a massive number of kms (probably 20,000km). Still shifts exactly like it did when new. I have never observed that level of consistent performance from anything on the dirt.

Now, if only it worked with a cassette with a reasonable range.
I have a XT Di2 bike for a few years. I had 1 RD fail when it was fairly new....probably a gear slipping on the servo motor...which sucked during a race...the replacement has been fine for thousands of miles.

As far as cassette...I've been running a Hope 10/48. Shifts fine and is light...although the 4th cog(which is aluminum)tends to wear fast for me.
 
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