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Power meter question: What is your experience?


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My PT died and the the company says new one required disappointed with my experience and thinking of dropping the whole PT idea and going to:

 

a crank based SRM or Quarq

or may be even the Look Power pedals.

 

A few questions for those of you who have used them:

 

The SRM and Quarq can come with a multitude of cranks which one should I go for and is there any real difference?

 

I am between SRAM S975 GXP

FSA SL-K Light

Rotor 3D with normal or Q-rings

In addition to the Durace 7800 option for the SRM

 

would there be any difference between them?

 

I know there are people pro SRM and others pro Quarq but I don't know if there is a real life difference between the two.

 

however for a crank based PM I need to install a bottom bracket adapter for My Look 596 bottom bracket,

 

The other choice is Buying a new ZED 2 crankset with Look Power pedals. The price

 

difference between the two choices is actually not that much.

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I have Quarq and very happy - i could not tell you accuracy - supposedly 2%, but not sure it matters for someone like me anyway. I just do zero reset before each ride and occasionally during ride (super easy to do - just pedal backwards a few times).

I went S975 GXP and I simply have GXP BBs on both my roadie and TT - my roadie was red already and on TT I just put the GXP Bb on - cost not much - well under $100.

If you have BB30, I believe its not difficult as there is an adapter for GXP.

 

If I was buying right now, try get the new Quarq - tho i dont know if it is available yet.... very neat setup, different BB options, smaller,has L/R data and supposedly more accurate - check out the setup here:

http://www.dcrainmaker.com/2012/03/2012-sram-red-quarq-and-bike-arrives.html

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I have Quarq and very happy - i could not tell you accuracy - supposedly 2%, but not sure it matters for someone like me anyway. I just do zero reset before each ride and occasionally during ride (super easy to do - just pedal backwards a few times).

I went S975 GXP and I simply have GXP BBs on both my roadie and TT - my roadie was red already and on TT I just put the GXP Bb on - cost not much - well under $100.

If you have BB30, I believe its not difficult as there is an adapter for GXP.

 

If I was buying right now, try get the new Quarq - tho i dont know if it is available yet.... very neat setup, different BB options, smaller,has L/R data and supposedly more accurate - check out the setup here:

http://www.dcrainmak...ke-arrives.html

 

 

Thanks a lot!!! might wait a bit then for the 2012 model to be available. I am still debating though if I should go with the Polar pedals.

 

Does anyone here use the Rotor Cranks? I think they just look hot.

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Thanks a lot!!! might wait a bit then for the 2012 model to be available. I am still debating though if I should go with the Polar pedals.

 

Does anyone here use the Rotor Cranks? I think they just look hot.

 

 

To me the issue with the Look/Polar setup is that you are limited to Look pedals and Polar computers...(this is my understanding, but I could be wrong...) whereas with SRM/Quarq/Powertap, you are not - any pedals, any ANT computer...

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To me the issue with the Look/Polar setup is that you are limited to Look pedals and Polar computers...

 

Look pedals is not an issue for me as I run them on all my bikes. But the computer issue is interesting. Polar computers are nice in that the battery lasts for ages unlike the Garmin which I have to charge every other day and if you forget thats it! BUT polar do not have a proper GPS watch or computer and that put me off.

But I must say the pedal option is growing on me as you are neither limited by wheel choice nor crank choice.

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To me the issue with the Look/Polar setup is that you are limited to Look pedals and Polar computers...(this is my understanding, but I could be wrong...) whereas with SRM/Quarq/Powertap, you are not - any pedals, any ANT computer...

 

 

Keep in mind that the Polar computer (which is only computer the Look/Polar power pedals will work with) has a maximum storage capacity of ~ 2.5hrs when recording at 1 second intervals (which really is a sensible minimum recording frequency for power data). That rules them out for most people.

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Keep in mind that the Polar computer (which is only computer the Look/Polar power pedals will work with) has a maximum storage capacity of ~ 2.5hrs when recording at 1 second intervals (which really is a sensible minimum recording frequency for power data). That rules them out for most people.

 

Wow that is pretty low. One more point to consider. Always in the know Alex!

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Surely polar will bring out a new computer to go with the prdals that has more capacity.

 

 

I asked this morning. There is talk of a new head unit being released by the end of the year.

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TrinewB

 

if you read Alex S advice he is probably one of the longest term users of PM around

if he tells you Polar/Garmin/Look is problematic then take that advice

 

after your last experience why you wouldn't just fork out $1500 for a new PT built into a decent wheel or $1800 for an SRM?

both proven performance and good warranty support. I don't personally see the point of Quarq (same price as SRM but without the runs on the board)

SRM always seem to come out on top long term if you ask long term users

 

if you get it right this time it should last you 10yrs. Save up till you can do the job properly

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Jimmies advice sounds sound TrinewB.

 

If you are a one bike kinda guy, go the SRM. Don't worry what cranks are used, you won't even notice unless you look at them. I reckon a fresh pair of socks would be more noticeable than a change in cranks.

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I would have gone for SRM over Quarq had the price been same.

My Quarq cranks were $1800 from LBS last year.

 

Likewise and haven't had a problem.

Friend of mine has both an srm and quarq and can't tell the difference... That was enough for me .

Friend of mine also has an srm and sent it straight back for repair so I guess like most things you can be just unlucky sometimes.

 

With the right tools and someone showing you the first time you can swap a quarq over in about 2 mins once your set up on both bikes if that's what your after.

 

Go the quarq and buy the Mrs trinewb something to even it out :-)

 

LB.

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TrinewB

 

if you read Alex S advice he is probably one of the longest term users of PM around

if he tells you Polar/Garmin/Look is problematic then take that advice

 

after your last experience why you wouldn't just fork out $1500 for a new PT built into a decent wheel or $1800 for an SRM?

both proven performance and good warranty support. I don't personally see the point of Quarq (same price as SRM but without the runs on the board)

SRM always seem to come out on top long term if you ask long term users

 

if you get it right this time it should last you 10yrs. Save up till you can do the job properly

 

I thought Alex said the Computer had a short memory? Not that the Look Polar as PM was problematic. But Of course I know SRM is considered the gold standard they pretty pricey though 1800? is that for a used one? never going that way again thanks!

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Likewise and haven't had a problem. Friend of mine has both an srm and quarq and can't tell the difference... That was enough for me . Friend of mine also has an srm and sent it straight back for repair so I guess like most things you can be just unlucky sometimes. With the right tools and someone showing you the first time you can swap a quarq over in about 2 mins once your set up on both bikes if that's what your after. Go the quarq and buy the Mrs trinewb something to even it out :-) LB.

 

That will be most likely my decision have asked Monza to return the wheel :-( without changing the PT. Now gotta save a bit.

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no cigar Glenn- only the basic aluminum fsa gossamer are that cheap. if you want the DA or XTR one then you pay a lot more

from time to time people like competitivecyclist have sales. cant see them at the moment but maybe they have stopped selling the ali cranks

personally i prefer the standard stiff and heavy old fsa ali design to their newer carbon cranks

The SRAM ones are $2K- hit that at the right exchange rate and you are getting close

 

TrinewB read Alex S post its clearly stated- The Polar Computer has issues- thats the only computer you can use with the Look/Polar system- so why would you buy that PM?

Time to just get on with at buy something or park this thread until you have some money

Edited by Jimmy C
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One benefit (IMO) of Quarq v SRM is local support and ease of changing battery.

It may have changed, but when I was investigating, the battery change and support setup for SRM looked painful.

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Got me doubts about the pedal power meters. I read a review of the look/polar ones in the latest edition of procycling and there are problems with calibration etc and a few other things that obviously have stopped Garmin from releasing theirs, see even the pro team dont have a prototype on their bikes and so I would suggest we are a long way away.

 

Polar were the ducks nuts for so long for stuff (I had one of their big clunky HR monitors in the 80s) that they have developed a big ego thinking they are going to go their own way and the masses will follow, similar to Campag in some ways.

 

Companies like cateye are basically dead in the water and cant give their stuff away because of a failure to move with the times, a cheap Garmin gives you spot on speed time and distance and a downloadable capacity which is just great.

 

I have an SRM on my track bike which is great, I have a set of PT wheels and use them mainly on my TT bike or when I am going to do sprint sessions on a little hill not far from here.

 

I have a wattbike and do all my really hard stuff on that.

 

When Im actually riding a TT the only thing that really matters to me is speed and heart rate, they are my cues learned from thirty odd years of doing this stuff so a Garmin is great can keep my eye on those two numbers and then download them.

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So in the medium term I suggest the best way to go is a good set of PT wheels paired with a Garmin you can transfer from bike to bike, and also use on your ergo/turbo.

 

SRM if you have the money or another crank based PM.

 

Computrainer if you like watching courses etc, I would recommend going to Alexs turbo studio if you want to try one of those out.

 

Wattbike if you like going crosseyed looking at numbers, want vary your setup and really smash the thing without risk of damaging your bike.

 

Rollers if you pedal squares to teach you not to (how many of you can comfortably sit on 100 plus rpm floating along?? with no hands??) this will help you to be more efficient.

 

Ive found for racing itself a PM isnt really needed maybe for IM to keep your ego in check but in the dark ages I achieved this by simply keeping my HR down for me in that 155 ish range, I never ran well at IM but this helped me to run really well in distances up to 30km. The other thing with HR is it tracks your physiological responses you may be surprised at how your HR is high after a swim and onto the bike but drops after the first ten km or so, you can waste a lot of energy at the start of the bike in a long race with the excitement of the mob around you etc.

 

Power is all over the place when you try to ride to it I find it does your head in, knowing thyself is a good mantra. The real benefits of power are in training not in racing except for regular races like bike racing and downloading it after the fact and seeing constant improvement.

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Thanks TU I think I will probably go with the Quarq but have got to save up. The PT is gonna cost me 1100 to replace and relace so an extra 800 for a Quarq will be ok but means no PM on my bike for a while. Luckily have one on my turbo and just doing all threshold stuff on there.

 

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I agree TU.

 

I got a PM in my ace wheels recently as I find value in post race analysis. I also find that nearly all my PBs and measurable improvements in FTP as a result of said PBs come from races. But I don't look at the PM while I am racing, unless it is a TT.

 

I ride 3 different bikes regularly and for good reasons(I believe), if they shared a BB I would have an SRM, As they don't I use PTs. If I was a rich as yoyo I would just run 3 SRMs.

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Personally i wouldn't touch the polar unit. Their first attempt at power was a disaster and now they have a product that isn't compatible with anything. Stick with Quarq, SRM or Powertap. As TU said, if you dont need it for racing go with a PT. Personally i don't want to use power for TT'ing as you spend too much time looking at the figures and as you are often fresh and tapered for races you may end up selling yourself short.

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TNB where you are looking at the prices for Powermeters? They are not that expensive, unless you're trying to convince yourself you NEED an SRM/Quark instead!

 

I bought a Powertap Pro+ wheel off Competitive Cyclist for $800 delivered and have seen a few good deals around here too.

 

These units have been used and abused by a lot of people so just because you got a dud unit doesn't mean they are all going to be shit (the same goes for second hand stuff). I have never had an issue with mine, the wheel is bullet proof and hassle free. You can swap it between bikes easily etc etc.

 

Plus if you go down the powermeter track you can save yourself a few bucks to pay for a running coach :P

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TNB where you are looking at the prices for Powermeters? They are not that expensive, unless you're trying to convince yourself you NEED an SRM/Quark instead!

 

I bought a Powertap Pro+ wheel off Competitive Cyclist for $800 delivered and have seen a few good deals around here too.

 

These units have been used and abused by a lot of people so just because you got a dud unit doesn't mean they are all going to be shit (the same goes for second hand stuff). I have never had an issue with mine, the wheel is bullet proof and hassle free. You can swap it between bikes easily etc etc.

 

Plus if you go down the powermeter track you can save yourself a few bucks to pay for a running coach :P

 

Haha! You wait my running is getting better every week!!

See I have a Mavic cosmic carbone which had the PT. new hub is 900 plus lacing another 100-150. I will use the wheel as it is agood one. I am just cross with PT and the fact I got a bit mucked around with but sure new PT is still by far the cheapest option. Can't even afford that now as am taking a family of 4 to the other side of the world!! And it will be a while till my bank balance recovers from that. PT failure could not have happened at worse time!

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TNB where you are looking at the prices for Powermeters? They are not that expensive, unless you're trying to convince yourself you NEED an SRM/Quark instead!

 

I bought a Powertap Pro+ wheel off Competitive Cyclist for $800 delivered and have seen a few good deals around here too.

 

These units have been used and abused by a lot of people so just because you got a dud unit doesn't mean they are all going to be shit (the same goes for second hand stuff). I have never had an issue with mine, the wheel is bullet proof and hassle free. You can swap it between bikes easily etc etc.

 

Plus if you go down the powermeter track you can save yourself a few bucks to pay for a running coach :P

 

Haha! You wait my running is getting better every week!!

See I have a Mavic cosmic carbone which had the PT. new hub is 900 plus lacing another 100-150. I will use the wheel as it is agood one. I am just cross with PT and the fact I got a bit mucked around with but sure new PT is still by far the cheapest option. Can't even afford that now as am taking a family of 4 to the other side of the world!! And it will be a while till my bank balance recovers from that. PT failure could not have happened at worse time!

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I thought Alex said the Computer had a short memory? Not that the Look Polar as PM was problematic.

 

Correct, I have no personal experience of these new meters, although one of our clients has used them (Jeff Jones - 2011 UK BBAR champion and 12 hour TT world record holder) and we learn a lot about the useability and reliability of power meters via our clients.

 

Polar may indeed come out with a new head unit which might address the memory problem. But when, and how much?

 

IR reader to download your data. Ugh.

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Pithy Power Proverb:

"The most important consideration when choosing a power meter is the quality of data. Everything else is a feature."

- me

 

 

For TrinewB - "A power meter should be for life, not just for Christmas"

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Alex, do you sell the Quarqs?

I thought you mentioned before that you did but couldnt find any info on your SRM sales pages

Thanks

 

Yes and his prices are very comparable to OS

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Thanks Gents. Will give him a call when the time comes.

Rollers if you pedal squares to teach you not to (how many of you can comfortably sit on 100 plus rpm floating along?? with no hands??) this will help you to be more efficient.

 

O/T, but am I the only person that cant ride no hands on here? I know roxii frowned upon my efforts over christmas :lol:

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Now thats annoying New Quarq now limited to the new SRAM RED why do they do that? that makes it a very expensive option if you are not already running the new RED. :sly:

http://www.quarq.com/sram-red-quarq-power-meter

 

"The SRAM RED Quarq power meter has been designed and integrated into the RED group set. It is compatible with 2012 SRAM RED chainrings and must be combined with the 2012 SRAM RED Yaw™ front derailleur and 2012 RED shifters."

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I'm also interested in the new Quarq Red power meter but run a Dura Ace set up, can some explain how a front derailuir and shifters could possibly affect a crank based power meter?

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Now thats annoying New Quarq now limited to the new SRAM RED why do they do that? that makes it a very expensive option if you are not already running the new RED. :sly:

http://www.quarq.com/sram-red-quarq-power-meter

 

"The SRAM RED Quarq power meter has been designed and integrated into the RED group set. It is compatible with 2012 SRAM RED chainrings and must be combined with the 2012 SRAM RED Yaw™ front derailleur and 2012 RED shifters."

 

The new style cinqo will also become available for other crankets in time.

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Alex, do you sell the Quarqs?

I thought you mentioned before that you did but couldnt find any info on your SRM sales pages

Thanks

 

Yes, will take that old site down soon. New website coming and will have webform for power meter enquiries integrated into our backend systems.

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I suspect it might be a ploy to encourage more people to buy SRAM Red stuff. Nothing like some misinformation to gte the sales up. I would tip it doesn't matter as much as they are making out.

 

I already run SRAM but to limit to 2012 new FD is stupid!

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Just saw this on Bike Radar, Good review and does highlight some of the issues with the Look Power pedal wonder if Garmin will do better?

 

http://www.bikeradar.com/road/gear/category/components/pedals/product/review-look-keo-power-pedal-system-12-46244

 

The Garmin should at least avoid these 2 downers of the Look:

- You have to stop and switch device off to do a zero-reset

- lack of compatibility with other computers - ie not being an Ant device

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The Garmin should at least avoid these 2 downers of the Look:

- You have to stop and switch device off to do a zero-reset

- lack of compatibility with other computers - ie not being an Ant device

 

Well the ANT+ is not an issue as Garmin own ANT+ and that is why polar did not use it. Stopping to Zero is abut weird but according to this review u do not really need to.

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Well the ANT+ is not an issue as Garmin own ANT+ and that is why polar did not use it. Stopping to Zero is abut weird but according to this review u do not really need to.

 

It's interesting that in their review they say that about the zero- reset. I wonder why SRM and Quark have the feature if if has no use?

As I understand it, the devices can get out of correct calibration as temp changes (eg you start ride and its cold, then gets hot later).

 

Alex?

Edited by Quack
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