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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just started looking at new shimano brake sets and noticed shimano is releasing a new 4 pistion xt and trigger set june 14th. Are the updates worth waiting two weeks for and probably paying atleast and extra $100+ for? I can get a br-m8020 set for $279 on ebay and it says the BR-M8120 will be priced at $209.99 per front and rear and probably be a little cheaper on ebay. I guess if I wait the m8020 will probably go down in price as well. Anyoneone know more specifics as to how much better the new xt set up is compared to the current version?
 

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gravity curmudgeon
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No idea but am very interested in this discussion if anyone has actual experience. Cura 4 and Magura MT trail are appealing to me as well, but Formula has very little retail presence in US (not even sure where cura 4 is available) and I didn't have the best of experience with some Maguras in the very early 00's (probably unfair, but the bias is still there). My initial internet reviewing seems to point me toward XT 4 piston stoppers. Reduced price 8020 would be really nice if there isn't some compelling reason to wait for the 8100 set release.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Shimano has been the best brake I have owned and I like the non toxic braker fluid and ease off bleeding. Im on slx from a few years ago and I want to be able to adjust my pad contact as well as my triggers
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
What I wanna know is if anything really changed, i read they usually take current xtr tech and put it in the next version xt. With the new fancy names did anything change? It sounds like the calipers are the same and they upgraded the triggers.
 

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Shimanos website say that the new XT is 10% more powerful than the old XT (both 4 piston).

The first ride reports scattered across the web all talk about a bit better modulation than the previous generation as well, without losing the trademark shimano "bite".

I've also seen at least 2-3 first ride reports saying that the free stroke/pad contact adjustment on the new XT doesn't do much, for what its worth.

And, the only difference between SLX, and XT, is that the XT has that free stroke/pad contact adjustment, as well as a dimpled lever (for more traction). So, if the pad contact thing doesn't work that great, it sounds like SLX could be the way to go to save some money, and get the new brake with better modulation.

We'll probably know more when longer term reviews come out though.
 

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The new XT 4 pistons M8120 (calipers and levers) looks like 4 pistons XTR M9120, while the "old" XT M8020 looks like the saints (and using the same pads).

I wonder how they all performed against each other and whats the caliper size difference between all of them?

Also, is it possible to mix between old levers and new calipers (and opposite way)?
 

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MTB brakes specialist
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Deore, Zee, SLX, XT, Saint, XTR levers from newest generations and 2 previous gens are cross-compatible (with calipers) within the same group and cross-group. They share same diameter master cylinder and when pressing the trigger, the master piston travels the same distance.
If you see/read reports about bigger master pistons in the levers for 4 pistons calipers or that more oil is needed to push 4 pistons is not true at all.

The only thing that's true is that inside of larger calipers themself (with 4 pistons), there is more oil, which is to be expected.

XTR/Saint/XT/SLX/Zee BR-M9120/820/8120/8020/7120/640 have same size pistons (2x16 mm + 2x18 mm).
P.S. - Magura MT5, MT7 and MT Trail share same caliper body and have 4x17 mm pistons.

XTR/XT/SLX BR-M9120/8120/7120 are redesigned for more straight oil route inside the caliper, which results in better response to the lever trigger actuation (no matter which lever gen and group).

+ It's also easier to bleed (air-free) vs. Saint/XT ("old")/Zee, where the bleed nipple is parallel to the banjo and thus it's more complicated to bleed (air-free), because in the further part of the caliper some air can still be trapped.

+ One can adjust the direction of the banjo, which is really helpful vs. Saint/XT ("old")/Zee, where the banjo is in a fixed position and like 2 times longer. So depending on the frame caliper mounting, it can face pretty down and thus require the hose to be bent up pretty hard right after the banjo end.

For modulation difference, they slightly change/rework the curve of the Servo-Wave of the levers of different gens/groups.

The choice should be pretty obvious!

Non-finned pads are all cross-compatible.
Finned XTR/XT (new)/SLX pads are not compatible with Saint/XT ("old")/Zee calipers.

Resin pads for 4 pistons calipers contain more metal than those for 2 pistons calipers.
+ They transmit heat more to the disc/hub vs. metallic/sintered pads, that transmit the heat more to ceramic pistons and then to the oil, resulting in wandering bite point when braking for prolonged periods + very noisy in wet.

Best 4 pistons resin pads for Shimano are Trickstuff 260 Power+.
They have better initial bite power and better maintain it, when braking for prolonged periods + wear out less than Shimano resin.

Right now I'm on Saint calipers + XTR Trail (9020) levers with Trickstuff pads.
I'm planning to move to new XTR calipers.
 

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Deore, Zee, SLX, XT, Saint, XTR levers from newest generations and 2 previous gens are cross-compatible (with calipers) within the same group and cross-group. They share same diameter master cylinder and when pressing the trigger, the master piston travels the same distance.
If you see/read reports about bigger master pistons in the levers for 4 pistons calipers or that more oil is needed to push 4 pistons is not true at all.

The only thing that's true is that inside of larger calipers themself (with 4 pistons), there is more oil, which is to be expected.

XTR BR-M9120, Saint BR-M820, XT BR-M8120/8020, SLX BR-M7120 and Zee BR-M640 have same size pistons (2x16 mm + 2x18 mm).
P.S. - Magura MT5, MT7 and MT Trail share same caliper body and have 4x17 mm pistons.

XTR BR-M9120, XT BR-M8120 and SLX BR-M7120 are redesigned for more straight oil root inside the caliper, which results in better response to the lever trigger actuation (no matter which lever gen and group).

+ It's also much easier to bleed (air-free) vs. Saint/XT ("old")/Zee, where the bleed nipple is parallel to the banjo and thus it's more complicated to bleed (air-free), because in the further part of the caliper some air can still be trapped.

+ One can adjust the direction of the banjo, which is really helpful vs. Saint/XT ("old")/Zee, where the banjo is in a fixed position and like 2 times longer. So depending on the frame caliper mounting, it can face pretty down and thus require the hose to be bent up pretty hard right after the banjo end.

For modulation difference, they slightly change/rework the curve of the Servo-Wave of the levers of different gens/groups.

The choice should be pretty obvious!

What I don't know is if BR-M7120 have ceramic pistons (like XT), but judging by Zee having them, I would say yes, because Zee is SLX level.

Non-finned pads are all cross-compatible.
Finned Saint/XT ("old")/Zee are not compatibe with XTR/XT (new)/SLX calipers.

Resin pads for 4 pistons calipers contain more metal than those for 2 pistons calipers.
+ They transmit heat more to the disc/hub vs. metallic/sintered pads, that transmit the heat more to ceramic pistons and then to the oil, resulting in wandering bite point when braking for prolonged periods + very noisy in wet.

Best 4 pistons resin pads for Shimano are Trickstuff 260 Power+.
They have better initial bite power and better maintain it, when braking for prolonged periods + wear out less than Shimano resin.

Right now I'm on Saint calipers + XTR trail (9120) levers with Trickstuff pads.
I'm planning to move to new XT or SLX calipers.
Tnx for all the info, it was very helpful!

The changes are not so dramatic, so i dont see any reason to upgrade from the "old" XT M8020 i got.

PS, Maybe you also know piston sizes for Sram Guide and Code?
 

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..

PS, Maybe you also know piston sizes for Sram Guide and Code?
As far as I know, the Guide uses 13mm and 14mm pistons, and the code uses 15mm and 16mm pistons.

And, for reference/comparison (other brakes in the same price/category), the TRP Quadiem uses four 16mm pistons, while their new "Trail SL" brake uses 14mm/16mm pistons.

I'm curious if the old versions prices will drop as places clear out inventory. I've got a old hardtail with some Tektro Aguria pro brakes that function fine, but are a giant pain in the butt to bleed. And I'd love to replace them with something with more power, are cheapish, and aren't awful to bleed.
 

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It's 100% identical to XTR (aluminum), except steel pads retention allen head bolt vs. titanium flat screwdriver head bolt, which weights slightly more than the titanium one, but at least one always has allen keys during the ride and it's easier to unscrew.

You can order only the caliper itself and keep your existing levers and hoses.

https://www.bike-components.de/en/Shimano/XT-Bremssattel-BR-M8120-mit-N03A-Resinbelag-p71478/

Appropriate banjo bolt comes with the caliper.

Pads clearance adjustment has never properly worked for Shimano.
You don't need this damn bolt, really.

Levers reach adjustment on the other hand can be handy.
But you already have it.

You could also wait a little bit more and buy the SLX BR-M7120 caliper which will be also 100% identical to XTR/XT, the only differences being not so shiny caliper painting and resin pads instead of metallic pads.

Pictures of banjo bolts for 2 pistons SLX/XT, 4 pistons XTR/XT/SLX and 4 pistons Saint/Zee/XT.

Pictures of pads retention bolts for XTR, Saint/XT/SLX/ and Deore/Zee.
 

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MTB brakes specialist
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Have found a picture of SLX BR-M7120 and as you can see, it has the steel pads retention allen head bolt (like XT) and also finned pads (like XT).

I honestly prefer more the XT painting vs. this marine blue SLX painting.
But I know it's done on purpose to widen the already extremely small gap between XT and SLX 4 pistons calipers.
 

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BOOM goes the dynamite!
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Not to throw a monkey wrench into the system, but you missed one. Look up the other Shimano 4-pot brakes that have been getting good reviews (MT520) and let me know whether you think it's worth the increased cost of SLX/XT.
 

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I haven't missed anything. Here it's about XT. Not Deore BR-MT520.
Deore have same diameter 4 ceramic pistons, but not possible to adjust hose position, not possible to fit finned pads and no pads bolt, but a pin.
And they are also more difficult to bleed (air-free), like Saint/XT/Zee BR-M820/8020/640 vs. new XTR/XT/SLX BR-M9120/8120/7120.
I don't see why should/would one downgrade to Deore.
 
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Shimano has used similar to Sram 4 pistons liquid route design.
Here one can clearly see the route (Sram) of the liquid and having the bleed port on the opposite end of the same side of the caliper as the banjo bolt is much better to bleed (air-free) vs. having the bleed port at the same end/place as the banjo bolt, but on the opposite side of the caliper. Simply physics.
 

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BOOM goes the dynamite!
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I haven't missed anything. Here it's about XT. Not Deore BR-MT520.
Deore have same diameter 4 ceramic pistons, but not possible to adjust hose position, not possible to fit finned pads and no pads bolt, but a pin.
And they are also more difficult to bleed (air-free), like Saint/XT/Zee BR-M820/8020/640 vs. new XTR/XT/SLX BR-M9120/8120/7120.
I don't see why should/would one downgrade to Deore.
LOL, what? Because they work the practically the same and cost less. But of course you didn't miss anything. Oooh, the hose is slightly less adjustable...and a pin? The horror!

Since when is Shimano difficult to bleed? Oh, that's right. They're not and never have been so saying the new ones are easier than easy? Don't see the point.

If Shimano's started copying SRAM, I'm gonna have to stay away. Sometimes I ride in temps above 90 degrees. :lol:
 

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Read the topic title onсe again. It's NOT about Deore.
It's like when one asks for advise wether to buy a BMW or a Mercedes and you tell him to buy a Folkswagen.
And show me where I've stated even once that Shimano are difficult to bleed.
I've only stated that it's now easier to bleed them air-free.
And that Shimano 4 pistons calipers are less easy to bleed (air-free) than 2 is a well known fact. (for those who own them!)
And deciding to use similar liquid route, which is more optimal than the existing one has nothing to do with reliability or heat management.
So your statements... :lol:
 
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BOOM goes the dynamite!
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Read the topic title onсe again. It's NOT about Deore.
It's like when one asks for advise wether to buy a BMW or a Mercedes and you tell him to buy a Folkswagen.
And show me where I've stated even once that Shimano are difficult to bleed.
I've only stated that it's now easier to bleed them air-free.
And that Shimano 4 pistons calipers are less easy to bleed (air-free) than 2 is a well known fact. (for those who own them!)
And deciding to use similar liquid route, which is more optimal than the existing one has nothing to do with reliability or heat management.
So your statements... :lol:
Ooh, I'm soooo sorry for contaminating your pristine thread with all this talk about completely unrelated subject matter. :skep:

What exactly is this new made up "air-free" terminology supposed to be about? They're either bled properly with no air in the system (air free, as it were) or they're not. With Shimano, it's easy to achieve this and has been since forever on ALL their brakes so nope, not buying it.

If you wanna close your eyes to a product that performs the exact same job with nearly identical results, whatever dude. You choose XTR/XT/SLX, but oh noes, not Deore because...errr...who knows? You're entitled to your opinion, but stating it as fact doesn't make it so and when someone comes along with helpful info, you might consider just saying "thanks" rather than jumping down their throat and trying to belittle them.

Welcome to my iggy list.
 

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Looking forward for real life comparison between the 'old' XT M8020 and the new XT M8120 (as well as against XTR M9120 & Saints). All i know so far based on Shimano that the new version having 10% more power and having better modulation. More power and better modulation are always welcome, even thou i dont feel the XT M8020 missing in these departments.

PS, I saw the last DH race, and looks like many Shimano riders using XTR M9120 instead of Saints, thats says a lot about these brakes.. ;)
 
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