First Look: SRAM 10 Speed MTB Components - X0, X9 and X7 | Bike198

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First Look: SRAM 10 Speed MTB Components – X0, X9 and X7

With Sea Otter coming to a close, manufacturers throughout the mountain biking industry have released some new offerings at the beginning of the season for the rest of us to drool over before they hit the shelves and retail bike lineups. The biggest news of the year is the movement towards 10 speed drivetrains on mountain bikes, and SRAM has jumped in head first by supplying a complete line of 10 speed shifting options ranging from their budget X7 groupo to their high end X0 components.

SRAM’s 1:1 actuation ratio has been a long time favorite of the crew at Bike198, so let’s take a look at each one…

SRAM X0 10 Speed Mountain Bike Components

SRAM X0 10 Speed Mountain Bike Components

SRAM X9 10 Speed Mountain Bike Components

SRAM X9 10 Speed Mountain Bike Components

SRAM X7 10 Speed Mountain Bike Components

SRAM X7 10 Speed Mountain Bike Components

Thoughts On The New 10 Speed Groupos From SRAM

Outside of my personal opinions about 10 speed mountain bike components, the new offerings from SRAM look incredible. Their new way of handling “families” within the different brands has a strong branding presence centered around a high contrast look that is going to really bring the brand together and look great on bikes in the future. Each component is carefully laid out and there is a wide range of options (I typically mix and match with X0 and X9) for riders in multiple budget levels. One of my main concerns with the new 10 speed component setups was price, and SRAM answered that one quickly with the X7 group.

Having been a 2×9 rider for quite sometime, I would like to see an option for bashguards on the new 2×10 cranksets. On previous 3×9 setups I have run in the past, I was not worried about ruining the outer most ring due to its low use, but with a 2×10 setup, that outer ring is a lot more crucial. Some protection with the aid of a bashguard would keep the teeth in tact for a longer period of time in my riding style.

Centering this group around the Elixir platform (see our review on the Elixir CR’s here) really strengthens this group and finally…SRAM has a complete lineup that can really compete with the SLX, XT and XTR packages from Shimano. In previous generations of SRAM components, there was the illusion that they were not completely competing with Shimano due to different branding across the lines. Now…SRAM can promote the new groupos as complete groups with “family style” branding. This is a strong, positive move on SRAM’s part in the long run.

We will have to wait and see how these new groups perform on the trail, but…so far…it looks like a very strong offering from SRAM as we get into the peak season of 2010 and beyond.

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This topic contains 2 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by  Cat MacKinnon 6 years, 12 months ago.

  • Author
  • #15365 Reply

    Rick Katz
    • Total Posts 0

    I also have run 2×9 for some time now. This looks great, but what is SRAM thinking? I would never consider running a crankset without bash guard. Fix that issue and I see a full X.9 2×10 setup in my future.

  • #15366 Reply

    Cat MacKinnon
    • Total Posts 0

    my concerns are the same as the “…Year Of The 10 Speed Mountain Bike” article. i’m also worried about using such a narrow chain, and i’m curious to see if we’ll see more busted chains on the trails because of it. i’m glad to see an X7 group though, since i’ve long felt the X7 stuff, while not as “bling-y” as the X9 and X0 stuff, was a very good value (and didn’t hurt the wallet if you wasted a derailleur on a rock.) the bashguard question is a good one too, and one i hadn’t thought of before. overall, i’m kind of in a “wait and see” mode about the whole 2×10 thing. i don’t personally have any use for it, but where it could really shine is XC racing, where the racers tend to use a far wider range of gears, especially when they hammer those higher gears on flat sections to pick up speed. i stay in the middle ring probably 90% of the time and only use four or five speeds in the back, so i could probably have gone with a 2×8 and not really noticed it (but then again, i don’t race.)

    one thing i wanted to mention regarding the “…Year Of the 10 Speed…” article was in reference to non-backwards-compatibility. i’m not sure if the author intented it to sound the way it did (and if not, i apologise), but (and i quote Sheldon Brown here), a derailleur doesn’t know how many gears you have. a long cage derailleur is a long cage derailleur, same for midcage. they’re made to a specific length and extension cababilities. if they were made for a specific amount of cogs, they wouldn’t need limit screws. so if the new XX stuff is made specifically for the 10 speed cassette, it wouldn’t technically be a long-cage (or mid-cage) derailleur, it would be a proprietary size. i haven’t heard that they’re anything other than standard mid- and long-cage, so they’ll work just fine with 2×9 or 3×8 or whatever. same with the front derailleurs. it’s all in the shifters and how much cable they pull.

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