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  1. #1
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    ***xtr or xt? Is xtr worth the $$$???**

    For those of you who have had experience riding XT and XTR components, I have a simple question...In general, is XTR worth the extra cash?? Would a weekend warrior XC rider (not a racer) notice the difference in shifting quality? Shifting precision? Disc braking ability? Does an XTR crankset have more power or some other magic over XT?? Does the XTR rear derailleur have less chain slap and better precision? Just looking for honest feedback as I build up my new bike and am pricing out components.

  2. #2
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    No, in fact the normal weekend XC rider would be just fine with SLX components.

  3. #3
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    If you had to pick one, shifters or rear derailleur, which one would you splurge on?

  4. #4
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    This is an oft brought up question. I think if you search the drivetrain or general discussion forums you will find a number of threads dealing with this exact question. Plenty of people will argue one of the other. From what I've seen, the general wisdom is somebody with your needs will be fine with XT. In other words, no magic. XTR saves you some weight. Any other benefits are up for debate.

    In fact, many, many people will argue that for the weekend warrior the SLX components are the best bang for buck.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slow Danger View Post
    This is an oft brought up question. I think if you search the drivetrain or general discussion forums you will find a number of threads dealing with this exact question. Plenty of people will argue one of the other. From what I've seen, the general wisdom is somebody with your needs will be fine with XT. In other words, no magic. XTR saves you some weight. Any other benefits are up for debate.

    In fact, many, many people will argue that for the weekend warrior the SLX components are the best bang for buck.
    Thanks, I did try searching before I posted, with no luck. I will try again and thank you for the advice. I agree that the SLX components are most likely just fine for me, however I am doing a build from scratch and don't want to leave myself wishing I had "just spent a few extra bucks on xxxx" when I can get the right parts now and be done with it.

  6. #6
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    I'll only say that I've just converted all my 29ers over to XTR from Sram XX. XTR is so good compared to XX that it's kinda sad. I've been a Sram guy for a long time. If you have the money, XTR is way better that SLX.

  7. #7
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    The bike I purchased this past month had an XT Shadow plus RD on it. I had a XTR Shadow plus in the parts bin from a pervious bike; long story short, I flipped the XT out and put on the XTR a few weeks ago. Did save some grams, but I haven't seen a difference in shifting performance. Others might disagree, but for me, the only advantage has been 'bling' factor and losing some weight.

    Shifters might be a different story, as my wife (not a huge biker) could tell when I upgraded her shifters... sometimes higher end models have more adjustability, if that matters to you. Since it sounds like you're building up this bike for yourself, I'd consider looking at the price difference between XTR and XT, and then throw that saving into a better wheelset from whatever you are currently considering. Thats where you would feel a difference I believe.

  8. #8
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    Good advice. I just looked at my invoice of the mostly XTR components that I bought from Price Point last month and wow did I catch quite the sale! I saved $250.00 on the $1000 order I placed, and at PP's already pretty darn good prices with an additional 25% off, my XTR components came to less than a typical XT build list. Long story short, my bike will be full XTR because of those deals. If anyone is looking for brand new XT components (Front and rear derailleur, shifters and new 2 x 10 crankset, send me a PM!). I am going to sell all of them off (brand new never even mounted on the bike).

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by imtheant View Post
    Good advice. I just looked at my invoice of the mostly XTR components that I bought from Price Point last month and wow did I catch quite the sale! I saved $250.00 on the $1000 order I placed, and at PP's already pretty darn good prices with an additional 25% off, my XTR components came to less than a typical XT build list. Long story short, my bike will be full XTR because of those deals. If anyone is looking for brand new XT components (Front and rear derailleur, shifters and new 2 x 10 crankset, send me a PM!). I am going to sell all of them off (brand new never even mounted on the bike).
    Then why the original question? I'm confused.

  10. #10
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    I guess I didn't realize what kind of cost savings I had gotten after I bought the XTR stuff. I had considered returning them for XT but at those prices, its a no brainer.

  11. #11
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    I've been looking at the weight. With the cranks, rear der, rear cassette and shifters, you save nearly a pound.

    That said, that's an expensive pound!

  12. #12
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    A lot of info here regarding XT vs XTR...but I never noticed much of a performance increase between the two...just weight and cosmetic. Ive ran full XT, full XTR, and mixed groups of SRAM/shimano. XT/SLX is the winner for budget builds...XTR looks the best IMO...and SRAM has the edge when it comes to total weight, and the option for xx1.

    I like running XTR rear der's and shifters, SRAM cassettes and cranks, XT brakes and front der's. May not be true for everyone, but I have noticed that my XT stuff seems to stay in tune a lot better...less post-ride adjusting. Doesn't bother me tho since it gives me the opportunity to keep everything serviced on a more frequent basis.

  13. #13
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    I have a few XT and XTR parts since I upgraded from the used parts bin. They all feel about the same to me, but the XTR is obviously lighter if you compare them. My former racing co-worker says the same thing: "XTR is only for the racing folks".

  14. #14
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    I've got an xtr crank. It spins good. It spins REAL good. Got it on ebay for cheap. REAL cheap. If you know what I mean.
    Keep trying to do the awesomest thing you've ever done.

  15. #15
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    I have the full XTR 2x10 trail groupset, it's shifts really nicely and yes it's light but if I was doing it all again I'd buy XT or SRAM.

  16. #16
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    I recently built up a bike with a combo of XT and XTR

    Stuck an XT Rear Der on as its half the price of XTR and more chance of damage.
    Stuck XTR shifters on as theres more gear adjustability, 2 way gear changes and a quick drop paddle to jump double gears thats the only real difference apart from a little weight.

    Went the XTR crank route as it looks gorgeous and 2 x 10.

    Big difference is weight but im sure i read somewhere on a website recently that the SLX crank was actually slightly lighter than the XT crank. (will update if i find the article)

  17. #17
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    "The SLX crankset. Hollow forged from aluminum, the FC-M675 wide-range double costs $60 less than the XT and manages to shift nearly as well while weighing 4g less."

    Shimano SLX double crankset review: A lightweight workhorse

  18. #18
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    XT is great.

    XTR is greater.

    If you have the $$$, go for the XTR.

    And if you can seek out the deals, even better...

    SPP
    Rigid.

  19. #19
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    There are multiple versions of each. 9 speed and 10 speed, standard, shadow and shadow plus. Shadow is tucked closer to the wheel. Shadow plus has a clutch mechanism and it will help control chain slap better than the others.
    No, YOU don't understand. You're making an ass of yourself for all of eternity.

  20. #20
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    I've had both and I won't buy XTR (except for shifters) again unless something unique comes out. Not that XTR isn't great but it's durability is limited compared to XT and XT components work just as well. You can't have it all. Cheap, durable and light. Pick two! As far as I'm concerned XTR is made for racers where weight is the main criterion.
    The trouble with having an open mind is that people will insist on trying to put things in it.

  21. #21
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    Wow, a lot of really good feedback here. I am leaning toward the XTR shifters and XTR crankset but leaving the rest all XT.

  22. #22
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    Here's my opinion: In most cases, a 2x10 XT or SLX set up with a shadow + derailleur is better than a 3x9 XTR set up - unless you have specific reasons why a 3x9 is better for you.

    Here's another opinion: Get off the Internet and put your bike together with what you have sitting at your house right now. It's all the same until you figure out very specific reasons why you want something.

    You got a great deal and have awesome gear - go ride with it.
    No, YOU don't understand. You're making an ass of yourself for all of eternity.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by wmac View Post
    Here's my opinion: In most cases, a 2x10 XT or SLX set up with a shadow + derailleur is better than a 3x9 XTR set up - unless you have specific reasons why a 3x9 is better for you.

    Here's another opinion: Get off the Internet and put your bike together with what you have sitting at your house right now. It's all the same until you figure out very specific reasons why you want something.

    You got a great deal and have awesome gear - go ride with it.
    Im running a 2 x10 setup for sure.

  24. #24
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    I find xt to be more than sufficient for my trail/xc daily riding. The parts are well made and light, but not too light. I choose xt over slx because the price difference is usually marginal eg. slx brake $115/ xt brake $125/. I cannot justify the large price difference for marginal gains of xtr. In this same example xtr brakes are $210/ with little to no known benefits, my friend has xtr and claims they "feel smoother" but this small subjective difference is not worth appx. $100/ brake, or any other xt vs xtr component for that matter. I have migrated to always buying shimano xt over my few years of riding and trying a little bit of everything (x7, x9, xo, xt, slx). From cranks, to chains, cassettes, and brakes I always feel like I get my money's worth (long lasting) and perfect functionality from xt parts.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by wmac View Post
    Here's another opinion: Get off the Internet and put your bike together with what you have sitting at your house right now. You got a great deal and have awesome gear - go ride with it.
    Great post!!

  26. #26
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    IMHO it depends on the part and generation of XT/XTR. I've used and ridden all levels of components and mixes of them, which is really your best bet. A mix of different components.

    I know 9sp is dead on new bikes but the difference between XT and XTR was greater between the M770 XT and M970 XTR.

    First of all shift quality is dictated (mostly) by the shifter. With that said, I would buy the best shifter you can afford. M970 shifters are far superior to M770 and can shift more gears at a time with less effort. Now 10sp XTR and XT shifters function the same so the benefit is lower weight.

    Front derailleur doesn't really matter all. Just as long as it's Shimano Deore or better. XTR is just lighter.

    Rear derailleur doesn't really matter either. Shimano SLX or XT will work great. Derailleurs just lose weight and get more exotic materials and finishing. Does it make it shift better? Not really. I've used a Deore rear with XTR shifter. I've even ran a 10sp long cage Ultegra rear with a 9sp XT shifter with no issues whatsoever.

    Cranks. SLX is plenty unless you want a lighter crank. Remember we're talking about the operation of the components. My M970 crank doesn't spin any better than and other Hollowtech crank. Spin quality is determined by the bearings and design of the system. Stiffness is now a function of frame design and limited by bottom bracket stiffness.

    Brakes. XTR race are the lightest. If you want lightest get XTR race; however, XT and XTR trail have significantly more power. The brakes become a compromise between weight and power. XT brakes are the MOST powerful trail brake Shimano makes. Weight is a concern lowest to highest is XTR race, XTR trail, XT, SLX... Stopping power highest to lowest is XT, XTR trail, SLX, XTR race. When I say trail I'm not including downhill components (Saint) which are the most powerful brake overall.

    Pedals. XTR are the best. Lighter, spin better, and look prettier. I have a set of XT trail and XTR trail and the XTR are smoother pedal. The XT feel the same though under foot.

    I have two geared bikes right now. One is full 10SP XT and one is 9SP XT with XTR shifters.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmitchell13 View Post
    No, in fact the normal weekend XC rider would be just fine with SLX components.
    This.

    Quote Originally Posted by imtheant View Post
    If you had to pick one, shifters or rear derailleur, which one would you splurge on?
    Easy, the derailler...and rear is more important than front, but learning proper shifting is key to fast shifts and long lasting equipment. I say derailler because better has less chain slap and you can go for teh shadow option for less likely trail damage to it.
    Last edited by Natedogz; 05-13-2013 at 12:48 PM.
    Get off the couch and ride!

  28. #28
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    I have a new XT 2 x 10 Crank on my other bike and its a great bit of kit.....weight was an issue but i want a bike that i can ride , not a bike thats constantly in the shop or in my garage being tweaked because its not shifing right... id happily take the weight penalty for a trouble free ride.

  29. #29
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    As soon as I read the thread title I knew op had less than 20 posts. Buy cheap and break stuff, then upgrade to appreciate what the good stuff can do.

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