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  1. #1
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    New Hope Tech M4's vs '08 Marta Sl's

    I am considering an upgrade partly because I like the look of the new M4's and levers but also as I would like a little more power. Are the M4's likely to give the extra power? I know that the new ones are not out yet but they are meant to be more powerful than this years.

    Also considering increasing rotor size to 203 from 180.

    Finally do braised hoses as an option make much difference, and is the braid material platic coated to protect the frame?

  2. #2
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    The M4's will give a massive increase in power over the Marta. The comparison is a bit odd as the M4 is several steps up over the Marta in terms of power. Having compared both of them, the Mini is closer in comparison to the Marta, with an increase in power and fade resistance. The modulation could likely go to the Marta, but not a massive amount, and dependent on compound for the pads. The Marta is a superlight XC brake, while the M4 is what people like myself use for mountain runs and down several thousand feet up, along with aggressive terrain. The Mini with larger rotors is a nice step up (I actually used a Louise 180 in the front and really liked how it felt over the Hope rotor).

    The advantage of the M4 is that it provides lots of power, but has fantastic modulation. Note also that it is going to be heavier than the Marta.

    The steel braid is coated with some sort of vinyl, yes. As far as the performance difference, there is none. You'll see people all over mtbr saying that there is, but it's hype. Not a single brake that either I've converted or used back to back with the steel hoses feel different. The lever is no more solid, then there's the manufacturers that try to make you believe they shed heat better, which is unlikely, considering there's a huge surface area on the caliper and plastic hoses do quite well on their own. I would default to the opinions that they do nothing except look nice. Even I converted my brakes for the hell of it and felt zero difference.

    As far as rotor size goes, unless you're bombing on dh runs for extended periods, the 183's should be good enough. I don't know what kind of bike you're riding or what you're doing, but the 183 (in the back) has been sufficient for me, and even in the front, I use a 203 with a V2, but I'd be absolutely comfortable with a 183 M4, no doubt.

  3. #3
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    JerkChicken, Thanks for your reply, has given me food for thought, the bike I run is an '08 S Works Stumpjumper, its already light, so I'm not overly worried about adding 100g or so in weight, but do like to have lots of power to the brakes. The bike currently runs 180mm front, 160 rear, (Hope floating rotors),

    The other consideration was to run an M4 on the front and a mono mini (tech X2 in new money) on the rear, as this would keep weight gain down, and I understand the '09s will come with the new lever, does anyone have experience of a setup such as this? I know its a similar setu to what is frequently used in the world of motorbikes.

    The final option which are probably more similar to the Marta's would be the Formula R1's but i'm ot sure these would deliver the power that I am after.

  4. #4
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    That setup, with the M4 183 in the front and a Mini 180 in the back is what my gf runs and it's superb. Even a 160 in the back would be quite nice, but she needs a bit more in terms of heat capacity for our mountain runs and I don't want to keep swapping rotors all the time.

    No experience with the new levers just yet, except test pulls at Eurobike. They were superb.

  5. #5
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    I'm based in Essex, so not too many long DH runs to worry about, could be interesting however when the XC course is built for the Olympics up the road though!

  6. #6
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    Mark, unless you're a Clydesdale class rider like me, for XC/AM work the 180 rotor should be more than plenty.

    I do a lot of river valley riding...not long downhill runs, but moderatley steep in places. With my heft, I went to a 200 mm rotor on the front a while ago and just kept it up when I got my M4's.
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  7. #7
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    Not a clydesdale (at least I dont think so, a little chunky perhaps!) approximately190 kitted up, so as I already have a 180 F, may use that as a starting point can always increase size later once have got used to the brakes.

    Out of curiousity the Hope rotor I have on the front at the mo with my Marta's is a 180mm, as I think the Hopes are actually 183mm, will I need to uograde the front rotor anyway, as there will be 1.5mm of the pad that is effectivey not in contact with the pad, or will this only be a problem when the pads wear down and a ridge forms?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerk_Chicken
    The M4's will give a massive increase in power over the Marta. The comparison is a bit odd as the M4 is several steps up over the Marta in terms of power. Having compared both of them, the Mini is closer in comparison to the Marta, with an increase in power and fade resistance. The modulation could likely go to the Marta, but not a massive amount, and dependent on compound for the pads. The Marta is a superlight XC brake, while the M4 is what people like myself use for mountain runs and down several thousand feet up, along with aggressive terrain. The Mini with larger rotors is a nice step up (I actually used a Louise 180 in the front and really liked how it felt over the Hope rotor).

    The advantage of the M4 is that it provides lots of power, but has fantastic modulation. Note also that it is going to be heavier than the Marta.

    The steel braid is coated with some sort of vinyl, yes. As far as the performance difference, there is none. You'll see people all over mtbr saying that there is, but it's hype. Not a single brake that either I've converted or used back to back with the steel hoses feel different. The lever is no more solid, then there's the manufacturers that try to make you believe they shed heat better, which is unlikely, considering there's a huge surface area on the caliper and plastic hoses do quite well on their own. I would default to the opinions that they do nothing except look nice. Even I converted my brakes for the hell of it and felt zero difference.

    As far as rotor size goes, unless you're bombing on dh runs for extended periods, the 183's should be good enough. I don't know what kind of bike you're riding or what you're doing, but the 183 (in the back) has been sufficient for me, and even in the front, I use a 203 with a V2, but I'd be absolutely comfortable with a 183 M4, no doubt.
    I have to disagree to some extend.
    I use 203/183 M4 from jan 07 and these brakes have best modulation, better than anything I tried except m6. But at my 210lbs they do lack bite in the front. or at least they are less powerfull than I expected and blame my skills but I want some more brutal power, so that I don't have to squeeze that lever so panicly. It never caused me any trouble but it is not what I want. Modulation is incredible and this is why I didn't change them this long. I am definietly going V2 front m4 back with these new levers this year. Esp after braking the master cylinder body on my right lever I tend to think there's a tad too much material removed in that hole on that upper clamp side. Plus in my wet conditions here, the lever blades needed constant lubing to stop creaking.
    I tried HFX9, Juicy7,5,3 XT 4pots, minis, m6s, Codes (a true I/O brake- terrible) and martas. I changed to braided hose this year and it did make my rear brake lever feel more solid but this will probably be more placebo effect than anything else. Plus I had some problems with front leaking after this mod - some connector issues.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by krolik
    I have to disagree to some extend.
    I use 203/183 M4 from jan 07 and these brakes have best modulation, better than anything I tried except m6. But at my 210lbs they do lack bite in the front. or at least they are less powerfull than I expected and blame my skills but I want some more brutal power, so that I don't have to squeeze that lever so panicly. It never caused me any trouble but it is not what I want. Modulation is incredible and this is why I didn't change them this long. I am definietly going V2 front m4 back with these new levers this year. Esp after braking the master cylinder body on my right lever I tend to think there's a tad too much material removed in that hole on that upper clamp side. Plus in my wet conditions here, the lever blades needed constant lubing to stop creaking.
    I tried HFX9, Juicy7,5,3 XT 4pots, minis, m6s, Codes (a true I/O brake- terrible) and martas. I changed to braided hose this year and it did make my rear brake lever feel more solid but this will probably be more placebo effect than anything else. Plus I had some problems with front leaking after this mod - some connector issues.
    I have to disagree with this, as modulation and power are not one and the same. It is possible to design a brake that can produce high levels of maximum braking force, but with modulation. Engineers have been working on this in all industries that use brakes since the inception of brakes. Just because modulation is good it doesn't mean that braking power is lacking and it's something painfully evident on mtbr, where people proclaim brakes with big initial bite as the next best thing, only to find out they are not very usable in sketchy terrain, nor are they good on providing maximum braking power. Any day modulation makes a brake with good power more usable.

    Your want for "more brutal power" is a preference, as I like the ability with the V2 to flick the brake and get a stop, but this is only a preference and not a pre-requisite, as I have used the M4 in the front, and even with my heavy rig and fat ass, it was more than adequate, in terms of flicking the lever for a quick stop to trackstand.

  10. #10
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    one thing to watch is the hope 2 piece rotor can rub on the post mounts of fox forks. i had that problem and replaced them with avid g2 rotors and the problem was solved. i'm runnung the 180mm m4's on my bike and love them. i'm 225 geared up and they have tons of power and great modulation.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerk_Chicken
    I have to disagree with this, as modulation and power are not one and the same. It is possible to design a brake that can produce high levels of maximum braking force, but with modulation. Engineers have been working on this in all industries that use brakes since the inception of brakes. Just because modulation is good it doesn't mean that braking power is lacking and it's something painfully evident on mtbr, where people proclaim brakes with big initial bite as the next best thing, only to find out they are not very usable in sketchy terrain, nor are they good on providing maximum braking power. Any day modulation makes a brake with good power more usable.

    Your want for "more brutal power" is a preference, as I like the ability with the V2 to flick the brake and get a stop, but this is only a preference and not a pre-requisite, as I have used the M4 in the front, and even with my heavy rig and fat ass, it was more than adequate, in terms of flicking the lever for a quick stop to trackstand.
    JC, i went 3 times thru both yours and mine posts and either my english is worse than I thought or i am missing sth. We are saying the same thing, aren't we?
    I do not confuse one with another - modulation and power are obviously two different things and obviously can occur in the same brake. or just one. or none
    As I said - I hate brakes with I/O feel like codes or j7's imo (what you called a lot of initial power). There is no sense in not being able to adjust the amount of bite you want.
    And I too see no problem in bringing M4s to a sudden stop (although luckily not as sudden as on codes ). BUT i feel there's too much force required to achieve high forces and sustain the amount of power i need sometimes. In other words, I feel like the unit isn't generating enough pressure in the end of my squeezing the lever - there is force but you need to squeeze to hard for my taste and it is annoying on very long descends. it feels to me like the process just stoppes too early - perfectly modulated action but then when you expect it to bite harder in the end it just doesn't give more.
    and this is what i look forward to on the v2s and new levers.
    that's all

    edit:
    any ideas anyone of when the tech lever combos will be available on chainreaction? they have them on page but no selectable options:/

  12. #12
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    The Tech levers are supposed to be out at the end of November.

    Now as far as the hydraulic leverage ratio, I will offer that my gf has had no problems or complaints with the Mini levers, even for our bigger mountain runs down. Do you have insanely small hands? I think this might clearly be a case where it's about the preference.

    one thing to watch is the hope 2 piece rotor can rub on the post mounts of fox forks. i had that problem and replaced them with avid g2 rotors and the problem was solved. i'm runnung the 180mm m4's on my bike and love them. i'm 225 geared up and they have tons of power and great modulation.
    I think the hubspacing is the most important determinant of this. It has been noted that King and I9 space themselves out further, while I have not had a problem with any of my DT Swiss and Hope hubs.

  13. #13
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    No problem with floating rotors (180mm) and Roval Controle wheels/ Specialized S120 fork combo either.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerk_Chicken
    The Tech levers are supposed to be out at the end of November.

    Now as far as the hydraulic leverage ratio, I will offer that my gf has had no problems or complaints with the Mini levers, even for our bigger mountain runs down. Do you have insanely small hands? I think this might clearly be a case where it's about the preference.


    I think the hubspacing is the most important determinant of this. It has been noted that King and I9 space themselves out further, while I have not had a problem with any of my DT Swiss and Hope hubs.
    :-) exactly the opposite:-). You will not find anyone with longer fingers:-) ah,let's leave it there-it is a matter of preference indeed. I wouldn't use sth for 2yrs if I didn't like it anyway and this IS the brake i like most from what I tried considering all aspects. I have kings and 36 and had to shave the mounts a little to fit the 2pcs rotor indeed. November you say-perfect as dollar is dropping again where I live:-)

  15. #15
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    I'm also waiting for new Tech M4 reviews. I'm 84kg and have the same experience with 2006 Mono M4, 180/160 Hope floating rotors as Krolik regarding the maximal stopping power (vs. pressing the lever). I'm looking for the new ones expecting more maximal stopping power due to larger pistons (as far as I know all pistons are the same diameter as the 2006/2007 model large one).

  16. #16
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    Pads

    If your problem is modulation or stopping power try changing your pad compound there are 4 different type and each has different characteristics,a lot cheaper than buying new brakes and really a lot more effective.

  17. #17
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    i used to have pair of marta (same as sl but with alu lever) and turned to new techX2 now
    hope brakes feel much more solid and give much better power+control (x2 have larger piston)
    for me as a light rider 65kg X2 (183f&r)is powerful enough for me to do most fr stuff and dh course
    i have to say the new tech lever brakes feel much better than the old ones
    GET THEM!!!
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by wizardB
    If your problem is modulation or stopping power try changing your pad compound there are 4 different type and each has different characteristics,a lot cheaper than buying new brakes and really a lot more effective.
    I've ridden Hope sintered and standard ones, Fibrax as well + some nonames too before. I don't think that trying different pads is cheap, especially those brand ones. But it's an old issue, I bought Hope Tech V2 (front) and M4 (rear) months ago and it's a different story. I guess I would be even fine with 183/160 Tech M4 front and rear.

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