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I've ridden a TON of shimano and sram equipped mt bikes, a ton of shimano road bikes... what's the deal with Campy stuff?? nice? I know its pricey as hell, just kinda kickin things around in my head about building a bike and using campy just to try it out, maybe Athena or Chorus... good stuff?? how does it compare in terms of Shimano and SRAM, where does the athena and chorus stuff line up quality wise?? performance?? I really have no clue about campy stuff at all...

Thanks!!!

(ya, I'm a bit of a n00b on components) :thumbsup:
 

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Chorus would be good. Athena might be as well, but I know for sure that the differences between Chorus, Record, and Super-record are pretty small. I might avoid the lower levels just so you can get the "full" campy experience. I have 2 bikes, one with Chorus 10 speed, and the other with Centaur 10 speed and Veloce escape shifters. I really, really like the snappy Chorus shifters. A very positive experience that just feels great.

The lowest I've tried is Mirage, which isn't made anymore, and I'd say that was much better than the low-end shimano stuff (Sora/Tiagra). Mirage, Veloce and Centaur were all comparable in my eyes, with most differences in material and finish, to save weight or make it look cooler. Chorus is a nice jump in quality.
 

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bonz50 said:
I've ridden a TON of shimano and sram equipped mt bikes, a ton of shimano road bikes... what's the deal with Campy stuff?? nice? I know its pricey as hell, :thumbsup:
Actually, Campy shifters are cheaper than Shimano for a comparable group. Campy derailleurs, especially the CF models are a little on the pricey side.

Shimano riders have a difficult time adapting to the Campy thumb shifter. I like it better. It's more intuitive.
 

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My experience is that I like Shimano and Campy. Ultratorque cranks are my favorite cranks in the world. In fact they are on my Dura Ace bike as well. The Campy shifters seem to get better over time. Almost like they are breaking in. As much as I love Campy though, my Record front derailleur does not come close to my Dura Ace or Ultegra FD. Shimano seems to have that wired. I would also suggest the Chorus over Athena.
 

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First, I am a Campy guy. After my first road bike (which had Shimano Ultegra), I built all my bikes with Campy b/c I loved the way it shifts and the ergonomics of the brake/shifters just suit me well. Fast forward to this week...My new bike (Scott Cr1 pro) that I got for a steal as a 2009 Closeout comes with Shimano Ultegra. Took it out around the block and was very disappointed with the sloppy shifting of the Ultegra line. Will be transplanting some Campy Chorus this week.
 

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cs1 said:
Actually, Campy shifters are cheaper than Shimano for a comparable group. Campy derailleurs, especially the CF models are a little on the pricey side.

Shimano riders have a difficult time adapting to the Campy thumb shifter. I like it better. It's more intuitive.
Yep. The klittle thumb tab just seems to me a far more intuitive function than two separate levers, or pushing one lever different distances. The chain goes the direction you push the lever, and pressing the thumb tab does the opposite. Simple.

And if you're riding on the hoods, your thumb is right there practically sitting on it.
 

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about price...

Campy made a odd move, back in late '08 when 11 speed first came out, raising prices by 50-75% for US based buyers. At the same time, sources in Europe were selling the the parts for about the same prices as the year before.

When the economic downturn hit and value of the pound dropped, relative to the dollar, you you buy 11 speed Record groups for less than 10 speed had been priced in any of the previous several years.

Prices from US sources have come down, that there is still a big difference in the price between places like Shiney Bikes and Ribble, compared to most US sellers.

If you buy from the right sources, comparable Campy groups cost little or no more than the other brands. As already noted, the shifters are cheaper and they are also repairable.
 

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Switched to used Centaur 10 shifters and derailleurs two years ago. I don't dislike Shimano, which I rode for several years, but I like the Centaur better (whether or not it is the full Campy experience). The thumb button is far more useful than the STI return lever, IMO, as is the trim on the front. For those two features alone, I see myself sticking with Campy as long as I can afford it.
 

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As C-40 pointed out, if you shop the UK sellers, you can find Campy at prices comparable to US wholesalers like QBP and J&B.

Out of curiosity, I priced an alloy Athena group for a co-worker with a nice old steel Bianchi. It was cheaper from Ribble than from J&B (for which we pay 8.75% sales tax and 10% on top of wholesale for anything ordered for "employee purchase") and not much more than new Ultegra.
 

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If you do all your riding on the hoods, Campy shifting is slightly easier. I find it harder to upshift when you're in the drops and pushing it hard, with Campy (but that's just me)
I have to stretch to get my thumb up there.

For the majority of people, there isn't much difference.
 

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I have multiple bikes with both and I prefer Campy for the price, quality on the low end, (not Escape!) and especially the feel of the thumb shifter. I ride both interchangeably with no problems. The biggest and most problematic difficulty is the sparse selection of wheels with Campy rear hubs. I really had to look for quite some time to find a set with loose ball bearings.
 

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If you want a thumb shifter you can allways get Shimano Sora.
 

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I liked the shifting when I had Sora. It took me a while to get used to the dual levers on Dura Ace. Heck, I still make mistakes shifting every once in a while.
Not being able to shift one way from the drops is no big deal. Not too long ago, cyclists had to move their hands to the down tube even. I wonder if I'll try campy or SRAM on my next ride. The thing I do like about SRAM is that I can use Shimano's better shifting cassettes with it.
 

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Larger and in a better position. From what I've seen (I never try to stare at Sora equipted bikes too long), It's almost impossible to shift from the drops with Sora.
 

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MR_GRUMPY said:
Larger and in a better position. From what I've seen (I never try to stare at Sora equipted bikes too long), It's almost impossible to shift from the drops with Sora.
That's my experience. I ride Campy; I've ridden Shimano bikes and it works fine, but I prefer the way the Campy operates. The thumb button on the Campy mech can be reached easily from the drops or the hoods, and I even pop it with my pinky when riding on the tops if I need a quick upshift. I rented a Sora-equipped bike for a long ride once, and I could not operate the thumb button from the drops, at all. If you only ride on the hoods and tops, or never ride in situations where you can't easily get out of the drops, it may not be an issue for you.

The one big ride I did on that rented Sora bike was the climb and descent of Mt. Haleakala on Maui. The shifters were no limitation on the climb, but the descent was a problem. High-speed switchbacks and gusty winds forced me to stay in the drops for long stretches, and I often couldn't get the gear I wanted. I wouldn't buy a Sora-equipped bike, but YMMV..
 
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