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Using Stages Power Meter with Zwift

Road44Road44 Posts: 19
Hello,

I've started road cycling last year, so i'm currently at my 2nd season and absolutely felt in love with this sport. But now, I want to start to train seriously because I minded myself to start racing next year.

So I plan to train hard on my trainer during the winter here in Canada. I really like to train with Zwift which I have tried for 2 months last spring. Unfortunately, at the moment I only have a basic trainer (Tacx Blue Twist) with sensors to get zPower that I find really limitative.

So I consider buying a smart trainer... the thing is that it's really expensive. So I had an idea that I wanted to share with you so you can help me to decide if it's a great idea or not. Since I would like to train all year long with power data, I am wondering if it could be a better idea to buy a Stages Power Meter Ultegra that I could use on my basic trainer and connect to Zwift and get real power data. I know that I wouldn't have my resistance synchronized with the ascent and descent in the game but I don't really mind on this one.

For me, It's seem to be a better idea to get a power meter that cost the same or even less than a smart trainer and be able to train with power data all year long.

What do you think?

Thank you for your time.

Posts

  • Sounds like a no brainer to me :)
    "A cyclist has nothing to lose but his chain"

    PTP Runner Up 2015
  • MiddleRingerMiddleRinger Posts: 678
    If you're happy with your basic trainer and manually changing resistance, then get the powermeter! But before you delve into the world of properly training with power, buy and read this book:

    https://www.velopress.com/books/training-and-racing-with-a-power-meter/

    Seriously, go order it now. :-)
  • jgsijgsi Posts: 5,026
    Word of caution.... the Stages can be subject to multiple dropouts on Zwift..... zero watts being recorded = nil speed, even for a second.
    Very annoying and when Zwift racing, you are dropped after the third time it happens because the efforts to get back in are immense.
    Using Vectors or probably other pm s - no such problem.

    This is all unproven of course as Zwift dont really care, Stages dont really care, your PC/laptop manufacturer dont care, the USB dongle manufacturer dont care, Microsoft /Apple dont care.
    Just saying like.
  • StillGoingStillGoing Posts: 5,207
    jgsi wrote:
    Word of caution.... the Stages can be subject to multiple dropouts on Zwift..... zero watts being recorded = nil speed, even for a second.
    Very annoying and when Zwift racing, you are dropped after the third time it happens because the efforts to get back in are immense.
    Using Vectors or probably other pm s - no such problem.

    This is all unproven of course as Zwift dont really care, Stages dont really care, your PC/laptop manufacturer dont care, the USB dongle manufacturer dont care, Microsoft /Apple dont care.
    Just saying like.

    Just to add that my P2M hasn't had any problems with drop outs.

    For the cost of a Stages power meter (that seem to be the worst of them all at the moment for failures and inconsistent readings, (see Shane Miller vids)) you could get an Elite Kura smart trainer with an inbuilt power meter. Admittedly no use when actually riding outdoors or racing.
    I ride a bike. Doesn't make me green or a tree hugger. I drive a car too.
  • Having got 2 Stages Ultegra PMs, the battery contacts don't stick out enough. Bent them back manually and not one drop out since. Not the best solution, but it works.
    "A cyclist has nothing to lose but his chain"

    PTP Runner Up 2015
  • jgsijgsi Posts: 5,026
    Having got 2 Stages Ultegra PMs, the battery contacts don't stick out enough. Bent them back manually and not one drop out since. Not the best solution, but it works.

    This on Zwift?
  • markhewitt1978markhewitt1978 Posts: 7,614
    I think that applies to Zwift or no Zwift! A lack of smart trainer means you're missing out on the likes of ERG mode but if you're happy with that then ok
  • jgsijgsi Posts: 5,026
    I only get the annoying drops from my Stages on Zwift... on the road it is perfectly behaved... well I am not likely to get dropped if the headunit shows zero watts for a few seconds whilst still pedalling and I dont notice, put it that way.
    Zwifting means using my race bike with Vectors.
    Someone had the notion that the ANT+ Stages signal is not the best but that does not explain the on the road performance being acceptable.
  • markhewitt1978markhewitt1978 Posts: 7,614
    jgsi wrote:
    I only get the annoying drops from my Stages on Zwift... on the road it is perfectly behaved... well I am not likely to get dropped if the headunit shows zero watts for a few seconds whilst still pedalling and I dont notice, put it that way.
    Zwifting means using my race bike with Vectors.
    Someone had the notion that the ANT+ Stages signal is not the best but that does not explain the on the road performance being acceptable.

    In the house there are all sort of areas of interference, the main one being from your PC, but fans, lights, microwave ovens, TVs, wifi, bluetooth you name it. Out on the road you're away from all that noise.
  • jgsi wrote:
    Having got 2 Stages Ultegra PMs, the battery contacts don't stick out enough. Bent them back manually and not one drop out since. Not the best solution, but it works.

    This on Zwift?

    Not directly, but to Garmin/dongle, so would ultimately affect Zwift also.
    "A cyclist has nothing to lose but his chain"

    PTP Runner Up 2015
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