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For me, fore/aft effects efficiency, height effects comfort.

If I get the seat too high, my lower back hurts first and then my achilles tendons. Too low and my knees stick out to the sides and my hips and butt feel creaky. There doesn't seem to be much difference in efficiency or speed at the same level of effort.

As others have said, there is no formula that works for everybody. .883 of inseam, heal on top of the pedal with your leg straight, and formulas involving joint angles and fancy devices to measure them all get close.

I agree that fore/aft placement directly effects how you pedal. Moving the seat forward helps spinners spin faster. Moving it backwards helps mashers mash harder. Even then there's no formula to tell everybody where to put their seat.

It seems, at times, that it makes little enough difference that a person who's convinced by a believably presented formula that his/her seat is in exactly the right place is more efficient than somebody in doubt.
 
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