Look at Cdale's website, it should give you accurate info on the frames. The synapse SL is a lighter version of their carbon framed synapse. It costs quite a bit more than the regular synapse carbon, but is essentially the same frame that weighs just a few ounces less. The synapse 5 may be the aluminum framed version. The 2 bikes will probably have different component specs. When looking at the website, make sure you look at the correct model year, as the specs will change from year to year.
Synapse SL uses a higher modulus carbon fiber than does the Synapse. A higher modulus carbon is stronger for each sheet of carbon, thus necessitating less material to construct a frame equally as strong and stiff. The end result is a lighter, stiffer stronger frame.
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