So yeah… this has all been discussed to death before no doubt, but I have been working in a roadie only shop for three months now and have only recently been introduced to working with Campagnolo and Sram bits.
So far, my observations are:
Campagnolo: looks the part, wears well, shifts like a tractor. Inconsistent. Loud as hell.
Sram: Looks retarded, shifts ok, except down shifts on the RD and up on the front. Brakes are awesome.
Shimano: Looks ok, except that I have a hard time distinguishing between an Acera RD and a 6700 RD. Shifts like butter, every time, again and again. However, the 6700/7900 style cable routing doesn’t make for better shifting and changing a cable has become more fiddly.
I personally ride Sram Red (yellow Tour edition) on my sponsored crabon awesomeness, but I don’t find the shifting anything to write home about. It takes some getting used to doubletap, but not seeing a downshift through means you end up with an extra upshift. Shifting the front derailer is like a throwback to friction shifting! If you don’t get the cable tension spot on, it takes at least 3/4 revolution of the crank for teh chain to be picked up. BTW, I ride a compact, that may have something to do with it.
We constantly swap groups between bikes (the customer can have their bike any way they want), so I have gained a fair amount of experience building up bikes.
Designers of internal cable routing should all be executed on the spot, but that’s more of a frame manufacturer thing.
Selling only Italian brands, our shop has a heavy bias towards Campy, so I tried it on my biek (Chorus) and tried, tried to like it. It just doesn’t live up to expectations. Minute varations in der hanger alignment cause it to misshift, rattle, ghostshift. Incredibly sensitive set up proces. Noisy as fuck. More noise in one gear than another, even with perfect setup. I observed this even on Super Record goups, supposedly the very cream of the crop!
In my previous job, I was used to working with Shimano, so I may be biased, but the setup up is a walk in the park. When set up properly, a Shimano groupset is dead predictable and reliable. It is quiet, smooth. Shifting is instantaneous. Even front indexing is spot on these days. The only drawback is that if you use only one or two non shimano items, performance drops quickly.
So, fellow shifting tarckers. What are your observations, both as a rider and as a mechanic? I find these debates highly entertaining, so I am hoping this one will be also.