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SRAM ETAP VS SHIMANO DI2, What electronic change is better?

SRAM ETAP VS SHIMANO DI2, What electronic change is better?

The electronic change in road cycling has come to stay. Its greatest comfort and precision when changing, avoiding cable tension problems and mechanical change, and their personalization possibilities are arguments that are increasingly convinced more experienced cyclists. In addition, in recent years groups of lower cost have emerged, which inherit a good part of the technologies of high -end groups to make the product more accessible to a greater number of cyclists. This is the case of Shimano Ultegra Di2 or the SRAM FORCE ETAP AX. The big brands of components, such as Shimano, Sram or Campagnolo, already have their own electronic change group. But without a doubt Shimano, pioneer in this segment with the DI2, and SRAM, with the group without Cables ETAP, are reference in the market. That is why we are going to analyze and compare their electronic change technologies to help decide for one or the other.

Shimano Di2: Characteristics, advantages and inconveniences

We start with the pioneering electronic change group, the Shimano DI2. It began to be marketed in 2009 and over the years it has been perfected to better adapt to the most demanding cyclists, whether or not they are professionals. It currently has specific versions for high-end groups or mid-high range of both road and cyclocross (Dura-Ace and Ultegra), as well as Mountain Bike (XTR and Deore XT). On the road, the only available development option is 2x11. These are its key components:


The Shimano Di2 battery It is the power supply of the entire electronic transmission, the person in charge of moving the engines of both deviators. Cylindrical and elongated, it is ion-lithium. It can also be installed inside the table (although there are also specific supports to install it abroad), usually inside the shell, which must be compatible, or the vertical tube. The autonomy of the Shimano Di2 electronic change battery with a single load is approximately 1,600 km.


The switchboard It is the heart of change Shimano Di2. It is a device of small dimensions, of no more than 5 cm and 10 g of weight through which the cables of change towards the deviators pass. It is usually installed under power with a support. The device has a luminous indicator of the battery level and a small button to configure the different modes of change, from manual to Syncro-Shift (semi-automatic change).


The Shimano Di2 buttons They resemble the levers of the mechanical change buttons. They are integrated into the brake handle and their drive system is much easier and more intuitive than mechanics. Pressing gently on the Piñón or Plate button, the closest to the handle, or that of lowering, closer to the cyclist, the corresponding deviation is almost instantly activated. This guarantees fast and precise marches changes. In this velotique video you can see how to use the buttons with the Syncro Shift mode activated: https://youtu.be/OSubp_ktTps


As he DESTICTOR Front as the rear of the electronic change DI2 are activated thanks to a small integrated and covered engine under a housing, which isolates it from the entrance of water, dust or mud. This guarantees that it can continue changing without any problem in rain or other adverse weather conditions.


The shimano di2 switchboard can be connected to Shimano's E-Tube Project app Through Bluetooth. The app is free and compatible with PC, Android, iPhone and tablets. With the E-Tube app software you can customize the electronic change, such as changing the function of the left button for the right or between the buttons themselves. You can also adjust the speed of change to your needs or consult the information about each component and see the tutorials.

Conclusions of the electronic change Shimano Di2

Among its advantages, the shimano DI2 change stands out for its reliability, its simple customization capacity and the semi -automatic change option (Syncro Shift). As for its inconveniences, we highlight that it has a more complex installation, has the presence of cables and is heavier than the SRAM ETAP.

SRAM ETAP: characteristics, advantages and disadvantages

SAM RED ETAP DESTICATOR The SRAM ETAP reached the market in 2015, six years after the Shimano DI2, revolutionizing the conception of bicycle transmission by dispensing with the cables. It was born like this The first transmission group Wireless of history, loaded with technology to guarantee precise changes, but at the same time easy to install and use by the cyclist. The first generation of the group was worth a protocol called Airea for the transfer of data between button and diversion. A technology that encrypted all the data to prevent hackeos and make sure that it was only the cyclist who had control of change. But Sram kept an ace in the sleeve that he developed in the shadow for the next four years and that was called Axs, the new generation of the wireless electronic change of the American brand. AXS, introduced into the market in 2019, offers greater precision and speed in change and integration and connectivity with all bicycle components, not only the transmission, also the potentiometer (the new quarq dzero of SRAM). At the same time, a new transmission group emerged somewhat less elitist to compete in the market with the Shimano Ultegra Di2, the SRAM FORCE ETAP AX, with the same wireless technology as the SRAM Red. These are the key components of the current SRAM ETAP AX:


In the button of the SRAM electronic group The change configuration is different from that of the Shimano DI2. The button is a small button, integrated in each of the brake handles. The one on the left rises pine nuts, while the law lowers them. To change the dish, both are pressed at the same time. It is a new system that costs a bit to get used to. But in the long run it is more intuitive and simple to act, according to the brand. In addition, there are alternative buttons with cables although they do not connect with the deviators, with just 2 cm in diameter called Blips. They can be installed at any point in the handlebar. A more useful button for triathlete handlebars and that has also also included Shimano for DI2.


The ETAP AX Deviators They have received improvements with respect to the first version. The speed in the change of dish has improved and the rear diversor integrates the novel Orbit technology. Orbit guarantees changes of softer and faster pinions thanks to a silicone fluid inside, which also maintains the stable chain in all its movements. Each of the deviators includes its engine (water isolated or mud) and its own battery, about 1,000 km of autonomy and that are loaded in an hour. In addition, they are interchangeable. If the rear deviation is exhausted, for example, you can put the striker, in order to avoid finishing the unique route.


SRAM is synonymous with Single dish. They introduced it to the market almost a decade ago in the Mountain Bike And now it is also offered for road and with electronic change. The SRAM ETAP group is also compatible with double dish, causing the cyclist to choose between a 1x12 or 1x12 ratio, both in the Network series and in the Force. [IRP Posts = "3842" Name = "We analyze the developments of the Rotor 1x13 group for road"]

Wireless system

He SRAM Wireless System It is the axis on which the entire system pivot. AXS not only perfectly integrates the system Wireless of the ETAP change, also the ble, which connects the rest of the ax components with the mobile to customize them (potentiometer, telescopic beech for grass or MTB) or the ANT+, where all the data and parameters of each training are transmitted. All this is controlled from the AX app, available for Android and iOS devices. In it we can see the state of the battery, in addition to customizing the operation of the buttons, the speed of exchange or programming maintenance reminders.


The main advantages offered instead of SRAM for road bicycles is its simple installation, its intuitive use, the absence of cables and the possibility of mounting several development options with monopath or double dish. As for the inconveniences, it is a more expensive change group and with less autonomy of batteries than its rival Shimano Di2.

Electronic change with or without cables, you choose

Cyclist with road bike The electronic change for road cycling is no longer reserved only for the most wealthy competition or cyclists. The market launch of groups such as the Shimano Ultegra Di2 or the SRAM FORCE ETAP AX have democratized this technology, with prices that remain high, but already somewhat more affordable than a few years ago. In addition, the evolution of the transmission components themselves, lighter and more intuitive than the first generations, causes more and more cyclists to dare to modernize their bike with this technology. Thus, you have to choose what change you prefer, if the reliable and cheaper Shimano DI2 or the advanced, wireless and more elitist SRAM ETAP AX.
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