Results 1 to 33 of 33
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Posts
    10

    Trek EX 8 vs Giant Trance 2

    I am brand new to this forum so I apologize if this has been covered before. I'm sure you get a million "this vs that" questions but I am looking to upgrade to a full suspension bike. I am trying to decide between the Trek vs Giant and was wondering if anyone has pros and cons for each brand. I do mostly trail riding for excercise, nothing crazy and I'm 5'11 185. I'm looking at both in 27.5.

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    6,654
    I don't know the specs of the current Fuel EX8 but the 2016 Trance 2 is a good trail/AM bike out of the box.
    I'm partial to the Trance because it doesn't use any proprietary shock tuning, but I've had riding buddies on Fuel EXs that did the job just fine.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    55
    I ride a 2015 EX8 27.5 and my riding buddy rides a 2015 Trance 2 29er. I can't really comment on one vs. the other, but I can tell you that we both really love our bikes. I love the EX8, love the 27.5 tires. The current EX8 is spec'ed even better than my 2015, with the same price point, a lot of bike for the money. One thing I like about mine over his is that I have Climb/Trail/Descend mode on both my front and rear shocks. I think his only had it in the rear. Not a huge deal but that's one feature that I appreciate.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: One Pivot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    6,460
    The fuel ex is the bike you buy, regret, and sell for a loss before you go pickup a remedy.

    The trance is a great bike. Cant go wrong with a trance if you want that style of bike.

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Posts
    10
    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    The fuel ex is the bike you buy, regret, and sell for a loss before you go pickup a remedy.

    The trance is a great bike. Cant go wrong with a trance if you want that style of bike.

    Just st curious why you think that about the fuel? The trance is just about apples to apples to the fuel ex 8.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    228
    Test ride them both, you will know which one to buy !
    don't tell me, "Show Me " !

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation: One Pivot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    6,460
    Quote Originally Posted by Tedbo68 View Post
    Just st curious why you think that about the fuel? The trance is just about apples to apples to the fuel ex 8.
    The trance is very comparable to a remedy. It's longer travel and slacker than a fuel.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    144
    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    The fuel ex is the bike you buy, regret, and sell for a loss before you go pickup a remedy.
    Maybe dont listen to this dude... I think what he's trying to say is if the Trance is on your short list then theres a place on the list for the Remedy as well.

    The Fuel ex and the Trance (or Remedy for that matter) are bikes best suited for different terrain. That's not to say they wont both be awesome given the same trail but one will likely out shine the other given the type of terrain your riding.

    Having interest in these 2 bikes isnt a bad thing, just ask yourself a few honest questions:

    - What type of terrain will I be riding the majority of the time?
    - Which bike fits you best and are more comfortable riding?

    If after these first 2 questions you still have multiple bikes then which one do you like the look of better and will have better resale value in your area.

    Most people I see out on the trail are WAY over biked... 140mm trail bike on super buffed trails is not as fast or fun as a 120mm bike. That said, 140mm bikes are a lot of fun on a ton of different trails!

    Having spent time on both, the 2016 Trek Fuel EX8 is a lot of bike for the money and would choose it over the Giant Trance or Anthem in the same price range.

    In terms of Fuel ex8 vs Remedy 7 (similar price range) the Fuel will have the better RE:aktiv shock

    Ride all of them and then make your choice. Best of luck!

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: One Pivot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    6,460
    The trance is a pretty heavy duty bike, it just may not appear so. Give it a ride though, is a very capable bike. It pedals great, its really resistant to bottoming out so you can go pretty big, its slack... and it'll take a 160mm fork. In one trim it does come with a 160mm fork from the factory. So is the remedy. In terms of the scales, its lightweight too.

    Longer travel bikes arent mush like they used to be. You can pedal around a trance on buffed trails and you wont be missing the pedaling ability of a shorter travel bike. Actually, try a fuel and a trance, the trance will likely feel like it pedals better to you, and it'll climb better. Out of the saddle especially.

    But once the trail points down or does get rough, the trance is going to really stand out over the fuel.

    The only reason id look at a fuel, or any 120mm bike these days is if you're into long all day more casual xc rides that get rough, but you're not trying to go fast downhill so you take it easy. The little bit more travel than an xc bike will be more comfortable.Kind of a self limiter.

    The 120mm bikes used to make a ton of sense. It was rough having to tote around the 38lb 6 inch bikes of years ago. xc bikes were too twitchy, so you could compromise with a 120. Now 6 inch bikes are under 30lb, pedal like xc bikes, and wont hold you back.

    I started on 4 inch HT's, then 4 inch FS bikes, then 5, now 6. I stuck with the 6 inch bike because I really dont feel like im missing out... but wow, its a lot more capable.

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    144
    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    Actually, try a fuel and a trance, the trance will likely feel like it pedals better to you, and it'll climb better. Out of the saddle especially.

    But once the trail points down or does get rough, the trance is going to really stand out over the fuel.

    The only reason id look at a fuel, or any 120mm bike these days is if you're into long all day more casual xc rides that get rough, but you're not trying to go fast downhill so you take it easy. The little bit more travel than an xc bike will be more comfortable.Kind of a self limiter.

    Now 6 inch bikes are under 30lb, pedal like xc bikes, and wont hold you back.
    I don't want to start a big argument on 140mm vs 120mm vs whatever...

    The OP stated, "I do mostly trail riding for exercise, nothing crazy" so why mention the 160mm fork option and in what world does a 6" bike pedal like a xc bike? It doesn't or you'd see world cup xc riders on them.

    Let's point the OP in the right direction here!

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation: justwan naride's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    520
    I don't think one can go wrong with either. But in order to deside between the two, a description of the trails he plans to ride as well his riding style and ambitions would be helpfull.

    I know the trance is a very capable alrounder and I've heard very good things about the 29" version of the fuel ex. I don't know anything about the 27.5 versions though.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation: shenny88's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    557
    Definitely depends on the trail(s), like others have said. I'm in Michigan where its plenty hilly, but not rocky or mountainous, and stuff over 5" of travel is just extra bike/suspension serving virtually no purpose. I rode my Fuel EX 8 at our modest DH park at the northern tip of MI, and it did just fine. The nice thing is that its not too much bike to lug around on our plentiful XC oriented trails.

    The Trance has really changed over the years. I used to have one when they were more similar to the Fuel, but now theyre longer and slacker, so it serves a different purpose, or at least provides a different experience.

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation: One Pivot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    6,460
    Quote Originally Posted by jason04 View Post
    I don't want to start a big argument on 140mm vs 120mm vs whatever...

    The OP stated, "I do mostly trail riding for exercise, nothing crazy" so why mention the 160mm fork option and in what world does a 6" bike pedal like a xc bike? It doesn't or you'd see world cup xc riders on them.

    Let's point the OP in the right direction here!
    Its nice to know you have the option. The cool thing with the new crop of bikes, even if they have the capability, its not necessarily a hindrance. For exactly what the OP is saying he rides, id still take the trance over the fuel.

    Ride it with a 140 fork. You can put a dual position 120-140 fork on it if you want.... but once you're riding around on a bike like that, you'll quickly find you really enjoy setting the fork out full length for going down, and just leaving it there at 140 isnt holding you back going up either.

    Thats perfect for trail riding.

    In this world right now, 6 inch bikes pedal like xc bikes used to. Seriously. Racing is still done on conventional xc bikes because of geometry more than anything, and the total fork length (which has little to do with rear suspension). Canfield did a 200mm bike they sold as a do-anything bike, and it did work. Thats a lot of travel for a full blown dh bike, but set it up right and it'll pedal like crazy.

    I know people dont want to believe it... just go try a trance. You'll be surprised how very capable it is of casual trail riding, and how capable it is of much more. You're not going to feel over-biked on a trance and wish you had a fuel.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jcd46's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    3,538
    ^^ Interesting and I agree, Why? I had my first ride today on my new 6'' travel on my normal XC trail and it was awesome! I know is ride one and I'm probably bias at this very moment. The other thing to keep in mind is that I came from an entry level HT with an XC30 fork. But in reference to climbing/pedaling I felt no difference as far as weight/pedaling. I did lock my suspension and that made a big difference.
    2016 SC Heckler R build
    2014 All City Macho Man Disc
    Nashbar 29er (Rigid)

    Giggity!

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Posts
    10
    The trails I am riding are nothing too technical. Mostly xc with some technical spots you come across here in NY. I am upgrading from a hard tail 29er so a lot of this is new to me. I know the 2 bikes in question are at a similar price point with similar components.

    I know I need to get on these bikes but with this type of riding, I am wondering which setup would be best right off the bat. I know eventually I'll get the upgrade bug, but I'd like to get a bike that would last me without the regret of thinking I made the wrong decision.

    To be honest, I know I can get a good deal in the giant, and maybe be able to play dealers off each other so price will be a slight factor, if the components are a wash.

    Thanks for all of your input, I enjoy seeing what more experienced riders have to say.

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jcd46's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    3,538
    Quote Originally Posted by jp08865 View Post
    Test ride them both, you will know which one to buy !
    This! components you can upgrade, fit/feel no can do Best of luck it can get a bit overwhelming. Keep us posted.
    2016 SC Heckler R build
    2014 All City Macho Man Disc
    Nashbar 29er (Rigid)

    Giggity!

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Zillah's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    76
    I had 27.5 Trance and currently on a GT carbon sensor, I also got a quick spin on a '15 fuel. I loved the Trance, climbs amazing and a beast descending chunky trails for a trail bike. Great all around bike, but there lots of tight twisty trails here that are very rocky, it suffered on tight technical switchbacks being a little long from the slack front end and long chain stays. My GT is only slightly better there but can't pass up the deal, I get a new bike every year nowadays. If I rode more out west I'd be all over the Trance or maybe a Process 153.

    The fuel is a capable bike, and for exercise and xc trails like you mentioned it is absolutely all you would need and some. You will hear its barely lighter and why not get the longer travel bike, which is valid depending on where and how you ride. Those bikes despite their weight can be a lot different on some trails. I don't know where you live, but I go to upstate NY for a week every year to see friends and ride spire falls mtn near Moreau lake and a few others in that area and that fuel would do just fine there.

    If you get a better deal on the Giants or like that shop better I'd check out the Anthem too, great trail bike. There's really so many good trail bikes out there right now it's hard to go wrong. Demo a few, buy what you like and don't look back.

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    6,654
    the new Trance, even though it's pretty long (my Med has a 46" wheelbase) does not feel like a boat on my twisty trails, and it's very confidence inspiring on faster and/or steeper technical trails, but some riders might prefer a bit shorter/twitchier bike.

  19. #19
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Posts
    172
    I too have come from a hard tail background all my mtb experience till this past October when I upgraded to an fs. I looked at and demoed several different brands for over 6 months. My final 4 bikes where the giant trance, norco sight, trek fuel and remedy. In the end for bang for the buck it was down to the fuel and trance.

    Let me tell you that overall the trance 2 is the better value all around. Better handling on climbs and downs on xc and more all mountain enduro trails. The slacker Geo handle the smooth and rocky, rooty stuff alot better then the 120mm fuel. If your looking for 120mm travel bikes there are better options then the fuel such as the giant stance.

    140mm is really best of both worlds, it handles like a 120mm xc 27.5 or 29er and can handle alot of enduro type trails no problem. The trance 2 and up has a similar ride feel to higher end bikes like the SC 5010 and intense tracer but is better balanced between climbing and down ability while the tracer and 5010 are more dialed in for the downs. [these two where also demoed by me and not worth the money in my opinion for what they offer]

    One more bit of advice if you plan on growing your riding abilities and try some more techy stuff the Trance will excel in this more so then the fuel.

    Test and demo both, as best as possible. Try to take them to trails you usually ride. Some bike shops do allow you to take the bike out for the day. Use this time to ride and evaluate the feel and performance of both. Buy what feels better not what others tell you feels better. As for components, shimano slx platform is the best mid level kit platform out there to date, hence why the most popular set up from bikes ranging in the 2200 to 5500 price range out of the factory.

    Sent from my LG-D852 using Tapatalk

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Zillah's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    76
    Nothing to do with twitchy, twitchy trail bikes are long gone. just considering the OP's interest. I'm at Highland weekly and had the Trance there a bunch, it can do it all. He will be happy on either of the bikes he's considering as well as a number of others. That new 5010 is a ripper too fwiw, rented one from the hub in Pisgah. Fun bike.

  21. #21
    At Work
    Reputation: sxr-racer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    1,668
    Been on my EX9 27.5 since last April. It does everything I need it to. I ride really tight twisty trails. Works perfect. You need to ride both. Both are good bikes. I am not a Giant fan, but you will be happy on the one that feels best to you. Nobody here can tell you which bike is the best for you.
    TREK EX9 27.5

    NINER MCR 9 (Moondust)

    2009 Gary Fisher Rig

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Posts
    215
    Trance 2 if for no other reason, and if specs are respectably close, for the OD2 system. I know it's not really a big selling point, but that added stiffness is noticeable when going from an OD2 bike to a non. Extra strength and stiffness at a critical point of stress is always a welcome thing. Certainly not a major point of consideration in most cases but something to take note if the bikes are otherwise pretty similar.

    If you're not riding crazy stuff that added stiffness and strength is probably not tremendously needed. It would allow you take on more later down the line without changing out bikes if you think that is a possibility. Also as others have mentioned the Trance is a hell of a trail bike in its current form and there isn't much of a noticeable difference in pedaling/climbing on the Giant opposed to the Trek if any at all. And taking into account you said you know you can get a deal on the Giant I would definitely go that route.

  23. #23
    mtbr member
    Reputation: socalrider77's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    337
    Quote Originally Posted by avidthrasher View Post
    Trance 2 if for no other reason, and if specs are respectably close, for the OD2 system. I know it's not really a big selling point, but that added stiffness is noticeable when going from an OD2 bike to a non. Extra strength and stiffness at a critical point of stress is always a welcome thing. Certainly not a major point of consideration in most cases but something to take note if the bikes are otherwise pretty similar.

    If you're not riding crazy stuff that added stiffness and strength is probably not tremendously needed. It would allow you take on more later down the line without changing out bikes if you think that is a possibility. Also as others have mentioned the Trance is a hell of a trail bike in its current form and there isn't much of a noticeable difference in pedaling/climbing on the Giant opposed to the Trek if any at all. And taking into account you said you know you can get a deal on the Giant I would definitely go that route.
    Depending on the year, giant no longer uses OD2. That said, I would still go with the trance. I came off of an albeit older fuel but have never looked back. I ride like OP does, just for fun and for exercise. Started with 140mm on the trance and now 160mm. As a bigger guy this extra travel is much appreciated if I run into something. I'm also quite a bit faster than many people I ride with or see riding on similarly specced shorter travel bikes. It's the rider, not the bike. I say go for the trance because it can do everything well. Whereas the fuel may struggle if you dabble in rougher terrain.
    2014 Giant Trance 27.5 3

  24. #24
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Posts
    10
    So after entering the wormhole that is full suspension mountain bikes, and researching things for the last 3 weeks, I ended up going in a different direction then when this thread started. I appreciate all the info you guys have shared that led me to the decision I made. I wound up with a 2016 Specialized Stumpjumper 29er. Thanks for the help.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Trek EX 8 vs Giant Trance 2-image.jpg  


  25. #25
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jcd46's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    3,538
    ^^ Nice and Congrats!! Always cool to see when people decide, time to get her dirty!
    2016 SC Heckler R build
    2014 All City Macho Man Disc
    Nashbar 29er (Rigid)

    Giggity!

  26. #26
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    47
    Very nice bike! Enjoy!

  27. #27
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Posts
    154
    @@ Purty!
    \__/

  28. #28
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Posts
    172
    Enjoy the new whip. Nice choice

    Sent from my LG-D852 using Tapatalk

  29. #29
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Posts
    3
    Quote Originally Posted by syrous44 View Post
    I too have come from a hard tail background all my mtb experience till this past October when I upgraded to an fs. I looked at and demoed several different brands for over 6 months. My final 4 bikes where the giant trance, norco sight, trek fuel and remedy. In the end for bang for the buck it was down to the fuel and trance.

    Let me tell you that overall the trance 2 is the better value all around. Better handling on climbs and downs on xc and more all mountain enduro trails. The slacker Geo handle the smooth and rocky, rooty stuff alot better then the 120mm fuel. If your looking for 120mm travel bikes there are better options then the fuel such as the giant stance.

    140mm is really best of both worlds, it handles like a 120mm xc 27.5 or 29er and can handle alot of enduro type trails no problem. The trance 2 and up has a similar ride feel to higher end bikes like the SC 5010 and intense tracer but is better balanced between climbing and down ability while the tracer and 5010 are more dialed in for the downs. [these two where also demoed by me and not worth the money in my opinion for what they offer]

    One more bit of advice if you plan on growing your riding abilities and try some more techy stuff the Trance will excel in this more so then the fuel.

    Test and demo both, as best as possible. Try to take them to trails you usually ride. Some bike shops do allow you to take the bike out for the day. Use this time to ride and evaluate the feel and performance of both. Buy what feels better not what others tell you feels better. As for components, shimano slx platform is the best mid level kit platform out there to date, hence why the most popular set up from bikes ranging in the 2200 to 5500 price range out of the factory.

    Sent from my LG-D852 using Tapatalk
    Relative beginner rider, looking to buy my first bike. Live in Phoenix, so dusty rocky desert trails. Demo'd a trance 2 in a medium and loved it but it did feel a bit small. The large was definitely too big. I'm 5'10" w shoes, 32" inseam.

    Since the riding felt great, how much does it matter that the medium felt small?

  30. #30
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    6,654
    Quote Originally Posted by anchorbaby View Post
    Relative beginner rider, looking to buy my first bike. Live in Phoenix, so dusty rocky desert trails. Demo'd a trance 2 in a medium and loved it but it did feel a bit small. The large was definitely too big. I'm 5'10" w shoes, 32" inseam.

    Since the riding felt great, how much does it matter that the medium felt small?
    How was the large "definitely too big"? Length, wheelbase, seat tube?

  31. #31
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Posts
    3
    Quote Originally Posted by fsrxc View Post
    How was the large "definitely too big"? Length, wheelbase, seat tube?
    Length I'd say, when climbing I felt like I had very little control over the handlebars. Some of this is likely my inexperience, but with the medium I felt much more control climbing.

  32. #32
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    6,654
    Quote Originally Posted by anchorbaby View Post
    Length I'd say, when climbing I felt like I had very little control over the handlebars. Some of this is likely my inexperience, but with the medium I felt much more control climbing.
    If you have another chance, test ride the Large with a shorter stem.
    I only say this because you mentioned the Medium "felt small" so don't assume you will just get used to it.

  33. #33
    mtbr member
    Reputation: d365's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    1,823
    At 5.10, you will most likely have to make a stem change on both the M or L, but either could work for you. You may prefer the extra wheel base, and stability of the L if you have long, fast descents. If you trails were slow, tight, and twisty, you'd probably prefer the shorter wheel base, and tighter handling of the M.

Similar Threads

  1. Trek Fuel EX8 vs Giant Trance 2
    By Tedbo68 in forum Bike and Frame discussion
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 03-18-2016, 10:33 AM
  2. Giant Trance vs Trek Remedy
    By kumes12688 in forum 27.5
    Replies: 25
    Last Post: 01-09-2016, 10:23 PM
  3. Trek fuel 26 vs giant trance 29
    By Inatrance2013 in forum All Mountain
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 02-15-2015, 05:48 AM
  4. Trek EX 7 vs. Giant Trance X3
    By hozman67 in forum All Mountain
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 03-18-2012, 11:51 AM
  5. Trek Fuel EX 5 vs. Giant Trance X4
    By 1974 in forum Bike and Frame discussion
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: 06-01-2011, 04:02 PM

Members who have read this thread: 66

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •