Shimano SPD A520 v M540? Fight!

juankerr Posts: 1,099
edited June 2011 in Road buying advice
I've got an old pair on M520's on my Road bike which are getting a bit baggy round the edges after 6 years of services and 3 different bikes. I going to retire them to my pub bike so need new pedals for my roadie.

I'm going to stick with SPD so was looking at the more Road orientated pedals but I'm not sure if the advantages of slightly lighter weight and larger platform is worth the trade off between double-sided clipping in.

I'm looking at the A520's (A600's caught my eye but apparantly they look like sh1t after a couple of months) and the M540's.

Any thoughts preferably backed up by experience?


  • alfablue
    alfablue Posts: 8,497
    for me, double sided win every time, the larger platform offers no advantage if the shoe is stiff enough (other than maybe easier cycling when not wearing spd shoes), and the potential "flipping" problem would be flipping annoying. I don't think the weight saving is worth it either.
  • daviesee
    daviesee Posts: 6,386
    A520s are road bike pedals which only clip in one side but are balanced so as to always be ready.

    M520s are mtb pedals which may look wierd on a road bike but have the added functionality of being double sided..

    If you care about looks, I would go for the A520s. In fact, I did as I use the same shoes on my mtb.
    None of the above should be taken seriously, and certainly not personally.
  • Bobbinogs
    Bobbinogs Posts: 4,841
    Actually, I think the M540s do look OK on a road bike. I have a lovely polished aluminium retro bike and the M540s don't look out of place IMO.

    I have found the M540s to be slightly "nicer" than the standard M520. The bearing seems to be a bit slicker, clipping in is slightly better, they weigh slightly less than the M520s, they feel better made and look nicer too. Whether this makes them worth the extra cash is a bit hard to answer. I would suspect that there is nothing tangible I could point to but I am happy with spending extra on them because it is not as if I replace them every week.

    I haven't tried the A520s but the M520 and M540s work great with a decent shoe (like the Spesh BG Sport, MTB).
  • claudie
    claudie Posts: 18
    I upgraded to the a520 and regretted it. Although they are weighted it doesn't work very well so the double sided system is much better. And I don't notice the benefit of the wider platform

    But that's only my opinion!
  • maddog 2
    maddog 2 Posts: 8,114
    A600 are good. Okay, you have the one-sided issue, but they are much lighter than even XTR spuds.

    I've used XTR, 540, XT, 520 and various others and they are all good. The XTR/540/XT have the best bearings.
    Facts are meaningless, you can use facts to prove anything that's remotely true! - Homer
  • cq20
    cq20 Posts: 207
    I use both M520s and A520s and I find the A520s more comfortable on longer rides (and I do have stiff soles on my shoes). The weighing works well and I've no problems clipping into the A520s ... but that's all IME / IMO!
  • juankerr
    juankerr Posts: 1,099
    Cheers guys!
  • akcc05
    akcc05 Posts: 336
    Between the 520 and 540, I'd go for the latter, simply because you can remove the pedal body without using the Shimano tool. I have had my M770 XT for two and half years, about 10,000km, no problem, just needed to tighten the cup and cone once and regrease as needed.