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I have a new X5 and think it is fantastic, but have always liked the 5.5 as well, just curious to see if anyone out there has ridden both & can give a comparison on the 2 - what are the differences, likes / dislikes of each
 

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tscheezy said:
Go to the Intense forum and read Green Giant's review of his new 5.5. He came off an El Salty. He's a happy dude.
yeah, good commentary on the build quality differences (splitting hairs) between the mfgs. No comparison of ride characteristics though.
The one thing you would def. notice is the steeper HT.
I have no time on an X-5, and have about 12 miles on 5.5. Leaning towards the ventana at this point.
 

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Both great bikes

I want to stress both are absolutely outstanding bikes (I had an X5 for a short while, but felt it handled a bit slow for me, so I went to a salty).

Differences - in no particular order and in no particular importance.

Handling - 5.5 is much more XC, particularly now that the X5 has a more slack HT angle than the original X5. I wouldn't say the 5.5 is quick but it's neutral and works great for me in singletrack etc. Also, I ride mine at 125-130mm up front in most situations. I will use more travel (getting a new talas soon) to slacken it out in steeper situations.

Suspension - 5.5 is more effeicient pedaling, however platform shocks have neutralized that difference a bit. The 5.5 does however accelerate quicker and has less bob. The 5.5 does have a bit of pedal kick-back in the granny gear. The x5 is a bit more neutral in all chainrings. X5 will be more affected by shock selection (coil vs air), 5.5 is a bit more particular to shock set-up (as opposed to selection).

Build quality - Ventana is a 10 out of 10, Intense 8.5 out of 10. Both excellent. Subtle differences.

Stiffness at the bb and rear end. Ventana 10 out of 10 (with double bearings) Intense 9 out of 10 (I have the new upper link). I'm 205 lbs or so. I do occasionally get a SLIGHT rubbing on my rear disc brake on the Intense in real tight switchbacks. We are talking slight, and not a deal breaker.

Customer Service - No one is better than Ventana. Have not had a reason to use Intense yet, though I've called in the past and Ventana is a bit more "personal" with you on the phone.

Honestly, if you are looking at these 2 bikes, handling might be the biggest difference, followed closely by suspension design and properties. I think handling wise you would be better off comparing the 6.6 to the X5 and a Salty (even with 5 inch rockers) to the 5.5.

Both great, great bikes.
 

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I wasnt so lucky with my Intense, (Uzzi VPX) yeah it road and pedalled great, and it probably pedalled better than the Pack simularly built esp for how much more travel it had. BUT, thats were the good ended for me. Alinment (rear-front frame) was real bad, and the customer service wasnt so hot. On the other hand only one time a call had to be made with Turner, I sold a shop demo bike, there was some sort of problem with one of the rear stays, he had the new part in 2 days without sending in the old part, now thats CS! I never had to call Ventana for any CS issues yet. Not saying that a Ventana cant have a problem, aluminum is aluminum, just havent had any issues.

I like Intense bikes and maybe one day I will try another again, I dont want to sound flamey, just my little world experiences.
 
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