Forum home Mountain biking forum MTB buying advice


Nickrees83Nickrees83 Posts: 3
edited May 2014 in MTB buying advice

I'm a newbie here and feel like a newbie to biking again, it's been about 10 years since I last set foot on a bike and back in the day it was a Kona Roast and Kona Stinky. Times have changed, I'm a bit older now and not quite cut out for dirt jumping and downhill lunacy! I've had to see the change between HS33 Magura's to Disc Brakes, Shimano to SRAM and I feel a bit lost.....

To get myself back into the game I bought myself a cheap and cheerful Boardman Comp 2013, which I really love! Huge fan of the seamless frame etc! The only real issue is that spec wise it's not exactly fantastic. Standard equipment includes Elixir 1's of which I feel I could probably stop quicker with my feet and the front one failed after just 20 miles of road riding, So currently the bikes back in Halfords having this looked at. However, once it's back they can be taken off and replaced with my newly purchased XT's!

Other than this it has SRAM X5 groupset, and my question is.....

Is the X5 groupset worth switching out for X9, or will there be no noticeable difference? It's not exactly expensive but a lot cheaper than the X0 series etc, but Halfords tell me that there is no real technical improvement between my X5 and the X9 bits?

Your views would be great!


  • ej2320ej2320 Posts: 1,543
    Wait until the X5 wears out and make use of it, then upgrade when it needs replacing
    As for upgrading I'd always use Shimano, XT has been faultless for me.. easy to set up, crisp shifting and never seems to go wrong
    Only SRAM thing I prefer are the cassettes, I prefer the polished look and the SRAM cassettes seem slightly more rust resistant
  • coulddobettercoulddobetter Posts: 812
    I have x9 on my Boardman , I don't know for sure but would guess the shifters would be more precise in feel .having said that I would wait until parts wear before replacing. I went for xo shifters and there is a marked difference in feel.
  • Nickrees83Nickrees83 Posts: 3
    Well there's no mileage on mine yet, a mere 20 miles, but my other reason for change is that I've just bought my girlfriend a Carrera Vengence for her birthday, which is cable pull tektro's and SRAM X4 kit, so anything I remove from mine I'll use to upgrade hers, so in turn hoping there will be a small difference between her x4 and my x5 if I replace it! Back in the day, the Shimano range was LX, SX, STX, XT and XTR and there was a clear difference and improvement between the different models in the lineup, but I'm getting the impression with SRAM that it's not that big a jump across the range unless you go balls out with the top of the range equipment right?
  • The RookieThe Rookie Posts: 27,748
    The SRAM range does make a big jump from X4 to X5, the X5 is noticeably better. From there to X7 and X9 are smaller jumps.
  • ej2320ej2320 Posts: 1,543
    To be honest I think SRAM is overpriced for what you get, A full SRAM X9 is on par with SLX IMO and the SLX is a lot cheaper

    The SRAM 1x11 really is good and no other company has matched it but again it is quite expensive
  • RockmonkeySCRockmonkeySC Posts: 15,247
    I prefer Shimano to SRAM but my SRAM X0 is pretty good, really nice levers and good reliable shifting.
    The advantage of upgrading to higher spec SRAM is that you can upgrade each component as it wears rather than having to worry about compatibility issues.
    I would say X0 is worth the extra cost over X9. Mine started out as X9 and there's a big step up in quality to X0.
  • atomic foxatomic fox Posts: 95
    i would avoid x9 tbh. i ve had 2 shifters break on me and the third one never feels as crisp as shimano .stick with what you have and go for x0 as recommended when replacing.
  • RockmonkeySCRockmonkeySC Posts: 15,247
    My X9 shifter stripped the ratchet, not sure if that was just unfortunate or normal.
  • pilchpilch Posts: 1,136
    Had SRAM forever - X9 is the best option in terms of price v. quality IMO, solid & reliable I would still buy X0 though for the small improvement in crispness and feel that it brings.....

    and its just more pimp...
    A berm? were you expecting one?

    29er race

    29er bouncer
  • passoutpassout Posts: 4,609
    Same with any groupset, the higher you go the smaller the difference. X5 is fine - money would be better spent elsewhere such as wheels & tyres. I have x9 and like it.
    'Happiness serves hardly any other purpose than to make unhappiness possible' Marcel Proust.
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