Where to spend my money - SRAM components...

edited February 2015 in Road buying advice
Hey guys.

Just finished building a custom road frame for myself and hoping to build it up with SRAM components...however, I'm not exactly sure where my money is best spent. It's a bit hard to discern the differences between Rival, Force, and Red in terms of money, weight, and performance. Red stuff gets really expensive, but seeing as I just fabricated this thing custom for myself, I'd like to make it nice.

Anybody have any suggestions on what's the best bang for the buck with SRAM's road components?!

Thanks in advance!


  • mfin
    mfin Posts: 6,729
    edited February 2015
    I think best bang for buck for most people will come from buying Force. You get most of the slick feel of Red but at far less cost. Merlin have a good deal on complete groupsets at the moment http://www.merlincycles.com/sram-force-22-groupset-64161.html.

    If you're not at all put off by the cost of that in the link, then you can count out Rival and then explore in your mind whether you can justify Red, but Red won't bring you much more in performance terms. Force does feel slicker in use to Rival in my experience, giving a shorter travel lever throw that feels more positive.

    Or, another thing you can do is mix it up and cherry pick from the different groupsets. If you do, put priority in the shifters as that's where the improvement in feel really happens the most. If you did choose to mix it up then also consider using a Shimano Cassette and Shimano DuraAce chain, they work great on it.
  • I have red. It looks cool. If I were buying today I'd get force without hesitation
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  • Force
  • stueys
    stueys Posts: 1,332
    I've rival 22 on my winter bike and had red on my nice bike for a while. i thought red was considerably more refined, especially on the front derailuer, my recommendation would be there if you want the nice feel. Can't comment on force as not ridden.
  • ddraver
    ddraver Posts: 26,586

    I'm in the wierd situation of trying to keep a 10spd group going and so there are a lot of very heavily reduced 10spd Red parts about but I wouldnt be buying them if I had an 11spd group
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