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New SRAM RED eTap AXS – Detailed & Demoed

New SRAM RED eTap AXS – Detailed & Demoed

(rumbling) – Just over three years ago STRAM shook up the cycling world when it launched it’s Red eTap Wireless Groupset. Now, they’re looking to
make a similar impact with this next generation Red eTap Access. If looks are anything to go by they will definitely do it but there is a lot more going on here
than just the aesthetics. We’re going to start by running through some of the highlights. (upbeat music) Firstly it builds on the established wireless eTap technology. You can now connect it up to the new Access smart phone app via Bluetooth to customize the functionality. It promises wider gear ratios and smaller jumps between the gears, something they have called X range. To do that, SRAM have added an extra 12th sprocket at the back and also changed the chain ring sizes up front. They’ve redesigned the chain by adding a flat top which SRAM say makes it quieter and stronger, despite
being slightly narrower. The rear derailleur has a hydraulic damper on the arm to reduce chain slap and allow you to run it two by or for the first time at eTap, one by. There is an integrated power meter option. There is a rim brake version as well as this disk version and it’s launched on the same day as a mountain bike Eagle Access version,
including dropper post, which all uses the same wireless protocol. Wireless RockShox reverb Access dropper post on your gravel bike, if you like. (upbeat music) Clearly there is a lot going on, so let’s go back to the beginning. When eTap was first launched, people raved about the performance, the simplicity, the intuitive shifting. Wanted to be more inevitable a little bit cautious about the wireless elements, both from a hacking perspective
and also reliability but now three years down
the line we know that both of those worries
are completely unfounded. It seems super reliable. My own set has worked
faultlessly for three years. Now, the way it functions is that the rear derailleur acts as the
master in this system, you then pair it up to the shifters and the front derailleur using
SRAM’s own wireless protocol. So it’s not AMP Plus
and it’s not Bluetooth. Now that much has remained the same in that it is still wireless and it still uses the same protocol,
but why is it so different? Well, I mean you look at
it for a start, don’t you? And it screams I am
different but why does it look the way it looks? Ultimately, gear ratios,
that’s what it comes down to. It doesn’t sound sexy, it’s probably not but they are super important. You get your gear ratios
right and it allows you to peddle comfortably
both up super steep climbs and when tearing
down the other side. So what SRAM have done
is broaden the range of the cassette at the
back and then reduced the chain ring sizes up front and reduced the gap between them. They’ve kept it consistent to 13 teeth across all the options, so now instead of 53, 39; 52, 36 or 50, 34, you have 50, 37; 48, 35 or 46, 33. Now, for a die hard cyclist like myself that sounds kind of weird. It is certainly smaller
but because the range at the cassette is bigger, you still have a higher top gear than you would have on a traditional cassette
because you now have a smaller sprocket with just 10 teeth as opposed to 11. Look, I told you it wasn’t sexy but it is still kind of cool. Ultimately, what you need to remember is that you have an easier bottom gear because the chain ring
is smaller up front. You have a higher top
gear, because you have a 10 tooth sprocket at the back and because you have a
12th sprocket in there you actually have smaller jumps between the gears at the back than a traditional cassette. Now there are three
options available to you in terms of sizes, you’ve got a 10 to 26, a 10 to 28 and a 10 to 33 which is the largest cassette that this road derailleur will accommodation. The cassette still fits in the same space as an 11 speed cassette, so in order to get that extra 12th sprocket in there then the gaps between them
have been made narrower. What that means is that
there is no new hub spacing but in order to get that 10 tooth sprocket on there, an old school free hub body will not work. So you need to use an XDR Driver. That in itself is not new, so there are plenty of options available out there when it comes to hub choices. Now because those gaps
between the sprockets have been made narrower, you therefore of course need that redesigned chain, but SRAM have said that rather than thinking of it as an after thought, they’ve actually designed it at the heart of the system then gone out from there. The idea being that a holistic approach means that you can improve the shifting quality, you can improve the durability and also you can make the
drivetrain even quieter. And one of the ways they’ve done that is by actually making the plates on the chain narrower and so despite the smaller gaps on the cassette there is still more space, they say, either side of the chain and that’s one of the most significant factors in reducing the noise. And they’ve also added
a hard chrome finish to the inside plates of the chain which they say boosts the durability. Because it’s narrower,
SRAM have then added that extra material on
the top of the chain. So as well as looking cool, and I think it really does look
cool, it also, they say, makes the chain stronger. Now, having started with that chain they then move out to look at the teeth and they have been sculpted and shaped to improve durability and
also efficiency, they say. It’s most obvious on
the one by chain rings which are now a road version of the ones on the Eagle mountain bike group sets. Having read up about those, it seems like improved durability has been one of the big advantages there and apparently the design helps to spread the load from the chain more evenly
around the chain ring. Now as well as the one by chain rings getting a total redesign, the two by chain rings have as well. The first point is that
there is a complete absence of chain ring
bolts and that’s because the big ring and the little ring are both machined out of the
same piece of material. Now before we think, well crikey, that might be quite tough to replace do bare in mind that SRAM are boasting 50% improvement in it’s durability. And when it is time to replace, if you get in touch with them, they will give you one at half price as well as recycling your old one. The idea behind the design is that, firstly it sheds weight and also boosts stiffness which is another factor you think in the improved shifting quality at the front derailleur. Chain with stiffness has
a massive baring on that. Now in total, that new design sheds about 80 grams over the previous chain set. This one, as you can
see, has that integrated power meter and I really
do mean integrated because it too is machined from
the same piece of material. The strain gauges are
based here in the spider which doesn’t really look
like a spider anymore but in total that adds just 36 grams. Now there are two options available, one with a power meter and one without but SRAM have designed it so that the one without is easily upgradable to that Quarq power meter should you wish. Because it’s on the spider it means that you have an accurate
measurement of your total power output as well as it being able to extrapolate your left
and right legs as well. Let’s move on to the rear derailleur now which, surprise, surprise,
has had an almost total redesign as well. That faster shifting, remember, and also the Orbit’s chain management system. But if you don’t mind, when we are talking about it, can we go for a spin? (upbeat music) Lovely roads but a little bit colder up in the mountains than
it was by the coast. Anyway, clutches are not
new on rear derailleurs. SRAM launched their
first on a mountain bike group set back in 2012 when
they also debuted one by. Now, the idea is that they keep your chain under control and give you a near silent ride on bumpy ground and they do that by resisting forward motion
of the derailleur arm when it’s responding to bumps, but without loading the drive train with loads of extra resistance, so it’s
not actually pulling back. So SRAM only ever intended it for use with one by grip sets because you can feel a little bit extra resistance when you’re shifting chain rings
with a clutch derailleur. But this one, the Orbit, is different because it doesn’t have
a roller baring clutch. It’s got a fluid damp system which allows the derailleur arm to move unimpeded in slower velocity, so like when you’re changing gears, but when it’s moving faster, I.E responding to bumps, then it loads it up with extra resistance thereby keeping your chain under control. Now, a lot of you, I’m
sure, probably never thought you needed a clutch on a road bike but I suspect it’s probably a little bit like disk brakes in that if you try it you won’t really want to go back. And let’s face it, with
many, many road bikes these days having gravel tendencies, not to mention the gazillion gravel bikes out there anyway, for which this group set was designed for both,
it of course makes sense to therefore end up with some kind of chain management system. It will allow you to ride away from tarmac in near silence, not to mention saving your paint work. Very cool too. Now, as I mentioned earlier, with a one by specific chain ring on you can use the same rear derailleur and run a single chain ring set up without any fear of your chain coming off. Now long time viewers will know, I’m a big fan of a one by set up so
I’m quite excited about that. Now in use you do get a sense that the Orbit is contributing to the feeling of silence you get from this drive train, not on smooth tarmac like this of course but any time you hit a pot hole or a section of bumps, there is a definite absence of a
quite familiar noise. Now, as I mentioned earlier, the Orbit isn’t the only thing that SRAM have done to the rear derailleur, they say they’ve spead up the shifting. Now that’s not something I ever felt was particularly lacking from the first generation but also not something that I’d say no to either. Apparently they’ve done it by changing the chips in the shifters as well as in the rear derailleur and also changing the motor too. And actually, it’s not just the rear derailleur, the front derailleur
gets the same treatment. So one of just several ways in which they’ve sped that shifting up. Of course remember, we’ve got the stiffer chain rings and we’ve also got that smaller gap between the chain ring sizes, so down from
16 teeth to just 13 teeth. And one last tweak to
that front derailleur is to the actual shape of it. So because you’ve got this Orbit chain management system,
SRAM have designed a front derailleur to be able to be used on a gravel bike, so with fatter tires. You can actually squeeze a 42 millimeter wide tire in there so you can run a two by gravel bike with
a silent drive chain. (upbeat music) I’m conscious that we spent a lot of time talking about the hard wear but we’ve yet to touch on one of the other big stories, the Access app that
lives on a smart phone. Basically, you connect
up all the different components on your bike to your phone, really easily by pressing
the Access button and it connects via Bluetooth. You then authorize
communication with the master in the system, the rear
derailleur remember, and hey presto, it’s then on your phone. Now what do you do with it? Well a bunch of things actually. Firstly you can change how it shifts, so there is a sequential button meaning you can hand over control of your front derailleur to Access, so all you need to think about is shifting into easier or harder gears and it handles what it shifts and when. Or if you still want control of your front derailleur but you want to delegate those little compensation shifts you need to make every time you change chain rings then you can tell this to do exactly that and you can choose whether you want one or
two compensation shifts. And it’s really quite
clever because you need to tell it exactly what
cassette you’re using and it will then tailor
exactly how it operates with it’s sequential shifting. You can also configure the controls, so changing what each
button actually does. So on your road bike, for example, you might want to shift using your right lever into easier gears
instead of harder gears. Now, you might not use that function terribly much but remember that the new mountain bike Access platform has also launched and that shares the same protocol opening up a whole world of quite intriguing opportunities,
perfect for the new breed of road, drop handle bar bikes. So you can pair an Access
Eagle rear mech cassette ring and chain on and
you’ve got super low gears. And bear in mind as well there is also a Rockshox reverb Access dropper post and you can choose which button on your handle bars operates that one. It is a brave new world,
I’m not going to lie. SRAM are calling these
new breed of mongrel bikes mullet bikes because it’s
business at the front and party at the back, something that I personally am down with. Well, what else is there to tell you then? Yeah, more, would you believe. The SRAM DUB bottom bracket standard that they launched for mountain bikes has now transferred onto the road as well. The idea behind that, firstly, so SRAM have got control over barings and so forth to improve
durability, they say, but also to simplify things. So one axle standard should fit threaded, BB30, PF30, PF86, BB
Right, BB386, probably more although would you believe it, there are that many standards that they’re still producing the old GXP diameter in order to fit treks BB90 and also
Italian threaded bottom brackets. One other point to mention is that your old eTap is not compatible with the new eTap, so you can’t use your old shifters with the new rear derailleur or vice versa. I haven’t talked about the brakes yet, and that’s for good reason
because they haven’t really changed at all with the exception of these new disk rotors
that look pretty rude. The shifters have also
remained essentially unchanged internally, there’s a little bit of extra texture added
to the shifter panel and also onto the rubber lever hood. Then the only things left to mention are the weights and the prices. So SRAM are quoting 2553 grams for the disk brake version with a power meter and 2139 grams for the rim brake version with a power meter. Remember, the power meter
option only adds 36 grams which is frankly quite astonishing. Now, the price. This is definitely a premium product, it retails for $4158 for the disk brake version with a power meter, without the power meter it’s $510 cheaper and the rim brake version, it’s $3488. Now, that is clearly a big investment in a group set but I’ve got to say I really like that no expenses spared approach to product development. Really pushing the boundaries
irrespective of the price. And I really like it
because in the cycling industry it’s been proven time and again that we benefit from
trickle down technology. So technology that’s been launched at the very top price point then reaches more affordable price points too. And SRAM have said that
they are developing a Force eTap Access group set. Now they haven’t said when but I believe we’re going to get more
information in April. So stay tuned for that one. In the mean time, please, if you’ve got any questions about this, get involved in the comment section down below. I will do my best to answer them. And of course, please make sure you give this video a big thumbs up. If you like what you see
with this new group set I will certainly be
giving it a big thumbs up. If you want a bit more information about the brakes which, I say, we haven’t really touched on yet then they are the same as when they were launched in 2016 and we’ve got a video about that group set so why not click straight
through to it now.

100 comments on “New SRAM RED eTap AXS – Detailed & Demoed

  1. Power meter bonded to chainrings. You can get it "rebuilt" when your chainrings wear out. You can buy a second power meter if you want to use different chainring sizes. Cool

  2. He Mentions durability quite a few times. Educate me do sprockets really wear out on a bicycle? Must take a lot of miles to do it.

  3. So good! I was absolutely sold, untill you mentioned price. Im asuming you are talking USD. So that would be $6000 aussie dollars! A full Dura Ace mech group set can be as low as $1600 aussie dollars when the web site I often buy from is on special. Would be very nice though.

  4. So, this is great news for us mere mortals on wages rather than shares. The new etap AXS now forces the 'old' model price to crash so it will become 'easily affordable'. Glad I abstained. Now i only need to eBay one small child instead of my virgin eldest in order to get into an eTAP groupset. First world problems, "oh the pain, the pain". cheers Si.

  5. It's become an advert for product only. They sold out to 'promotion' long ago. Sick to the back teeth of park tools and industry shaping what once was a group of enthusiasts ……. enthusing. Sad.

  6. You guys are so cool and lucky. I’m 17 and love road biking but will never be able to afford the awesome bikes you ride 😔keep it up love watching your videos really good 👍

  7. So we're supposed to bin a perfectly functioning powermeter because the chainrings are unremovable? Oh, we don't have to bin it, there's an option of sending it to SRAM and buying a new crank+powermeter set for 50% of the price? And that's cool because the chainrings last longer? TAKE MY MONEY.

  8. i started to think about my 12 speed dawes milk race back in the 80s, and how far bikes have come that you can now get as many gears just on the rear. sweet nx years upgrade i think!

  9. gcn should think about promoting affordable products as well, so 80 percent of the viewers might actually learn something helpful.

  10. More gears, bigger range, closer ratios, lighter weight, synchro shifting, cool looks…. where IS the number for my mortgage broker?

  11. the group set looks great and will result in better use of the smaller cassette cogs – marginal gains and then I got rocked by the price 😲

  12. Everyone should know that with SRAM's new etap crankset is a one-piece, chainring and crank. Once your chain rings wear out, you'll have to buy or trade in your used all-in-one chain ring crankset.
    Another yourtuber reviewed this and he claims SRAM will offer a tradein/recycle program at yet an undisclosed pricing structure .
    Can you say enclose ecosystem!!!

  13. "business at the front and party at the back – something I'm personally down with" <– I'm not sure how to take this statement. lol

  14. You lose top end speed though. 52/11 is a harder ratio than 48/10. So you top out quicker on the flats and you have the same climbing gear lol. And the cost, even working at a shop and getting it at "dealer cost" is still way to expensive. Etap originally was never this much.

  15. Great looking new tech, but how about Si's ability to keep a steady, consistent commentary while decending behind a camera/vehicle!?! Well done sir!

  16. Integrated power meter to the chain ring? So we throw the power meter away when the chain ring needs changing? Whilst this GS isn't aimed at the budget end of the market, it's conspicuous and unnecessary consumption…not what the planet requires (aren't we cyclists supposed be a bit concerned by this?).

  17. Thumbs up on the video, thumbs down on Sram. Great presentation but….This is redicoulous….. No offense…. I'm sure it is not interchangeable with any components of the previous groups. And the price, book thank you. I'll stick with my ye olde Campy mix bag of components 😛

  18. Hi guys, great video again of a great new groupset! I am now riding etap 11 with Rotor oval front chainrings and i would like to continue riding oval.. how would you see that possible on this new groupset ?
    Thanks !

  19. this film more than overs with the choice of words, really feels like you got paid by sram to endorse it. not one bad word or concern.

  20. $90 for a SRAM 12 speed AXS chain!
    Today I spent $90 for some new kit my Gravel Cross bicycle
    1 x San Marco Aspide Saddle Xsilite Rails Black
    2 x FSA Team Issue 9 Speed Chain 116 links
    2 x Bike Ribbon Cork Handlebar Tape Neon White
    2 x Vittoria Revolution G+ Graphene 700c Wired Tyre 35mm Black
    3 x Continental Cross 28 Inner Tube 700c 25-35mm Presta 42mm

  21. So, for real and be honest. It rides like a bicycle right? It shifts gears like most bicycles do right? You clip in normally and you pedal the thing like any other bike ever made right? In all respects it's just a bicycle. There is not a big difference in how bicycles ride down the road. What in Heavens name makes the bike so special that it now cost more than $10,000 for one? You people are turning into fools.

  22. could you make a video how to care about an electronic groupset? thank‘s a lot for the show!

  23. So, it closes a little bit the possibilities in customizing your gear range instead of increasing..
    Because I’m quite sure on the app you are not gonna be able to configure a cassette with a different ratio , only those 3 are compatible and the same for the chainrings..
    For us in handcycle not a good thing, because mostly of us have road chairings, but mtb cassettes (11-40) for example..
    Is there any chance to build a 2x chainrings bike with rear mtb Derrailleur??

  24. With electronic shifting and smart software, linked to a power meter, just when is there going to be an automatic "transmission" for these bikes? You could actually get rid of the shifters and cables.

  25. Ride SRAM on mountain bike (well mostly XC race) & mix of shimano ultegra R6800/R8000 on my road bike (& yes still on rim brakes road bike – think their fine but then my road bike is a 2013 Trek Domane 2.3 still lovely frame to ride and sometimes race local TLI club events) – such cheap stuff now R8000 particularly as all my stuff rim brakes but SRAM now making shimano very outdated across the complete range. Oh yes you can call me a wimp – run 12-25t cassette with compact 50/34t front all the time but do have some sub compact 52/36t rings in my spares that may go on sometimes……and live Bournemouth South Coast so not a hilly part of UK.

  26. Totally applaud SRAM for releasing this! Increased durability vs. RED v1 and tons of innovation and attention to detail. Di2 looks ancient in comparison.

  27. USD 4168.00 for the SRAM set? Great!
    I think SRAM should better use the pricing scheme of Gucci or Prada: no price tags at all. Which means for mere mortals: if you have to ask for the price… you can't afford it anyway and you are no customer for us.

  28. Expensive trash for brainwashed people who think they've got money…your heart doesn't know your bike looks like!

  29. Said it before All the gear no idea, multiple millions / top brands and comps doesn’t buy speed & ability
    Alan Sugar

  30. Could you help me , please ?
    I ride 52 x 36 by 11 x 32 , I've got no doubts about the cassette
    which I would prefer the 10 x 33.
    But how about the front rings , which one should I use the 50 x 37 or the 48 x 35 ?
    Which one would give me the same or a little easier ride ?
    Thank you

  31. Smaller chainrings and sprockets? Congratulation Sram for bringing that nonsense to road bikes. Shimano started it 25 years previously the offroad section. Its main effect was higher wear on the drivetrain. 10T sprocket – just watch it live getting eaten away!!

  32. Thing I like about cycling… is simplicity and leaving phones / apps electric tech crap crap at home… I got gifted a garmin thing that goes on your handlebars…still in the box months later. :/

  33. Am I the only one who find SRAM RED eTap HRD levers to be too wide and chunky when compared with Shimano? I don't have large hands, but I have fellow avg sized riders who swapped out their SRAM for the same reason.

  34. the price for a tarmac or venge w/ ultegra di2 isn't that much cheap than the etap version. however i read a lot of people reporting shifting problems with the old version … what do we know?

  35. Please compare the comparison between a Shimano compact with an 11/37 to Sram's 48/36 with their largest cassette. Highest and lowest comparison please Thanks Roger

  36. Всё это прекрасно работает пока нет пыли! Но что будет на пыльной дороге или под дождём?

  37. Can you configure the cassette size and other important settings without a smart phone? IE is a smartphone a requirement to using the eTap system?

  38. Thank you very much for your pretty informative video on the new group-set, this is indeed useful. I have two questions: 1. Have you also have a video for the new campagnolo 12 super Record eps group-set? 2. Would you consider making a video comparison of equivalent electronic grouses of the main three group-set companies; Sram, Campagnolo and Shimano maybe?

  39. This is extremely helpful to those of us running a little older kit. Understanding the requirements (and all the naming jargon)of the BB and wheel/hub interaction to mate with this system.

  40. Boy what have they done with that crankset. The integrated PM looks great, but Red is actually silver now? And what did they do with the chainrings? Please explain me why they've introduced a new BCD and machined together chainrings aaarggghh. That's just the crankset frustrations, don't get me started on the rest of the standards they f*ed here. On top of that it's almost impossible to find a 2×11 eTap groupset now.

  41. @ 2:15 “Those worries are completely unfounded”.. meanwhile I’m on my 2nd rear derailleur in 4 months on a 11month brand new Etap group set.

  42. Describe how to apply the axs stage to a Campagnolo 12 speed cassette .and Shimano 12 speed will be released in early 2020. Not trzwba to buy a set of korbami chain and axs axs axs and cassettes should be replaced rings in a wheelchair rear derailleur and all that, and now our Sram set stage axs will be compatible with a chain, for example, if KMC YBN speed 12 is also compatible with korbami for example, FSA ,Shimano, etc. Sram engineers made the technical myk, using a specific form of the circuit, which is not compatible with cranks 48 teeth, and used a circuit design which is only compatible with SRAM switches phase axs Red and Force will not work with any other switch in the trucks both versions of the switches axs Red and Force was used the pin that is not compatible with any other chain only, SRAM axs therefore, replacement of these rings will lead to the fact that I have applied it successfully to sxa Force I replaced the pin on the ceramic so called normal and bought a 12 speed Campagnolo cassette all burned. Sincerely, and I think this information will be useful to many fans of Sram axs

  43. In a historical perspective, when the blue tooth programming was introduced, biking took a split. One is pure man, his brain, and machine. The other is another man's (numerous people/corporation) brain and machine. That's just fine, but the next step away from actually biking is the motorcycle which simply adds a bit of a power component. No thank you. I would rather struggle along on my rat bike then enter this brave new world of chips.

  44. I love your videos man that you're so knowledgeable about bikes I'm a bigger guy trying to get in to cycling man in these videos are so inspiring

  45. Still on my Sram 2012 10 speed group set and rides like a dream to this day 🙏🏼
    Save money by just getting stronger and faster vs new groupsets😅

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