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  1. #1
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    Giant Trance SX 2015 (vs. Reign 2015)

    I testrode the new Trance / Trance SX / Reign 2015 on a 4 day test event in Italy.

    1) What are the main differences between the Trance SX and the normal Trance and how do they compare?

    Both bikes share the same frame, however, the SX comes with a bigger fork (160mm Pike with 35mm stanchions vs. 140mm Revelation with 32mm stanchions on the normal Trance). The fork difference flattens the headangle on the SX to 66, a welcome adjustment for steep downhills.
    The SX has the same 140mm rear travel but a shock with piggyback.

    Overall, due to the bigger fork combined with a short 60mm stem and wider bars the Trance SX just feels like a much more capable bike. Given the fact that you can lower the Pike's travel to 140mm on the fly with minimum weight penality, I don't see any reason to favour the normal Trance over the SX. (Running the Trance with the Revelation fork in the 120mm setting didn't make sense at all). I climbed with the SX a lot and couldn't spot any major downside compared to the normal Trance.

    2) How does the SX compare to the new Reign?

    I rode the Reign on the exactly same test course I rode the normal Trance / Trance SX many times before. It consisted of some steep climbs followed by some trail and a short downhill. For me personally the Reign felt as being a bit too much on that course. Yes it's more capable in the downhill department than the Trance SX, but you loose a lot of climbing efficiency and turning ability on the other hand. Given the fact that I enjoyed riding the freeride course with the SX the day before, that's a bad trade-off I'm not willing to take. For me the Trance SX felt as being the better Reign due it's bigger area of use. I decided to order one

    some pictures of the Trance SX (yes the colour is a bit ugly)

    Giant Trance SX 2015 (vs. Reign 2015)-20140928_103806-1024x768-.jpgGiant Trance SX 2015 (vs. Reign 2015)-20140928_103822-1024x768-.jpgGiant Trance SX 2015 (vs. Reign 2015)-20140928_110639-1024x768-.jpgGiant Trance SX 2015 (vs. Reign 2015)-20140928_110646-1024x768-.jpg


    Weight Trance SX bike and wheelset

    Giant Trance SX 2015 (vs. Reign 2015)-20140926_171643-1024x768-.jpgGiant Trance SX 2015 (vs. Reign 2015)-20140926_171800-1024x768-.jpgGiant Trance SX 2015 (vs. Reign 2015)-20140928_113605-1024x768-.jpg

    Weight Reign 1 bike and wheelset

    Giant Trance SX 2015 (vs. Reign 2015)-20140927_090253-1024x768-.jpgGiant Trance SX 2015 (vs. Reign 2015)-20140927_090507-1024x768-.jpgGiant Trance SX 2015 (vs. Reign 2015)-20140927_090746-1024x768-.jpg

  2. #2
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    Thanks for the info!
    Very insightful regarding weights.
    Did you run the wheels tubeless or not?

    It doesn't seem that P-AM2 wheels are bad at all compared to EX1501.
    Judging by the weights and factoring in the difference in tyres and cassette weight - they're pretty close.

    I was planning to get the R2, but for 750 more I could get Trance SX which has 1x11, Monarch Plus and better brakes and it's over a kilo lighter.

    On the other hand, I'm not sure how DP Pike performs and if the bike feels balanced with 20mm difference in front/rear travel...

    Also, I'm about 189-190cm and was planning to get R2 in L size, but I'd have to go for Trance SX in XL to get the same reach as it seems and then wheelbase would grow to that of a Reign and I'm not sure I'm willing to do that

    Maestro should pedal fine as well.

    Besides, that much money could get me a X01 groupset and M615 brakes are quite good.

  3. #3
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    No I don't think they were tubeless, I ran them @ 1,8 front /2,0 rear to avoid flat tires. (the inner width of the rims was 24mm so you could easily run them @ 1,6 /1,8)

    I'd recommend you the XL size. I'm 1,80 with 88cm inseam and the size Large fit me perfectly. I tested the M size on one ride too and it was definitely too small.

    Although sceptical at first I was pleasantly surprised how well the bike climbed even with the fork in its 160mm position. However, on the last day I had some longer climbs (1 1/2 hours) and ran the fork in the 140mm position because it felt a bit more efficient. (I've no experience in the regard Pike DP vs. SoloAir fork performance)

    Going downhill I don't think the bike felt unbalanced. Yes there is a 20mm difference but I personally prefer having a softer front fork with more travel and a bit firmer shock for the bigger hits anyway. For me that setup makes more sense than having a "numeric symmetric" but in practical use less pedal efficient bike. Keep in mind that equal numbers don't always equal optimal performance, e.g. you also don't brake 50/50 but rather 70% front / 30% rear. And remember, there are people still running hardtails with no rear suspension at all..

  4. #4
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    Thanks. What about the sizing? Were both bikes size L?

    I don't have much experience with Maestro, but I've tried Corratec Opiate which has 150mm rear travel and VPS suspension (similar to that of a maestro virtual pivot) and it pedals quite nice with minimal bob but it's still very active when it needs to be.

    I'm really not fond of that paintjob on the SX... 2014 model was much nicer. :/

  5. #5
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    Nice Trance man! I have a 2015 Trance 2 that I put Fox FIT 34's 150mm on (not quite a Trance SX but almost...kinda...close) and my buddy has a 2015 Reign with the Pikes. We swapped bikes during a ride a few days ago and it was a night day difference, mine climbed muchhhh better, I actually even preferred mine pointed down too. The Reign to me is just a mini downhill bike, it's just too much bike for our terrain, even when pointed down, but the guy still shreds on it just fine. I put a 50mm stem on mine along with Giant's dropper post as well and that helped a lot. This is how I have my Trance setup, it's a perfect set-up for an all around bike depending on where I choose to ride for the day.


  6. #6
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    Yes, both bikes were size L but the Reign still felt a tad shorter than the Trance SX. On the other hand the SX felt about as long as the normal Trance because its much wider bars (800mm vs. 730?) were compensating for the shorter stem. (I'd still cut them down to 780 though)

    One thing I forgot to mention - I've got the impression that Giant has optimized it's Maestro system for the new 1x11 drivetrains. Based on my observations, I think by swapping out the 32T chainring for a 30T and thus lowering the chainline you should be able to further enchance the Trance's uphill performance as the Virtual Pivot Point moves equally down when running more SAG (e.g. while riding steep uphill)

    I'll order a 30T chainring with the bike and report back how it affects pedal performance..

  7. #7
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    My Trance came with the 730mm bars, I replaced them for the 777mm bars I have now as I've always liked wide bars. I have a 32t on the front of mine currently and the chain sits on the spider a bit (stock 2x SLX cranks). I can space out the chainring to fix it....but I'm going to order a set of Race Face Cinch cranks and just run the chainring direct mount instead I'm debating wether or not to go to a 30t from my current 32t. I think I'll try the 30t though, even though I'm a 10-speed. I don't think the color is all that bad the SX either, it's definitely something that no other company has.

  8. #8
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    Nice write up, Steel Calf.
    Where part of Italy did you ride? Riviera? Sanremo? Finale?
    pozdro
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  9. #9
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    Great overview of the SX (write up, pics, weights) kudos!

    I've been searching the Web religiously over the last few weeks searching for some valuable input like this!

    Thanks for sharing!

  10. #10
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    this thread pretty much confirms I am going to get a Trance carbon and put a 160mm Pike RCT3 on it. It should be much lighter than 30lb :P.

  11. #11
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    thanks for the input!
    can you add some words regarding the sx Vs reign downhill/uphill performance
    cheers
    Last edited by Gal Shon; 3 Weeks Ago at 11:20 AM. Reason: t

  12. #12
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    Perhaps a stupid question, but is there any downside to running a dual position Pike in the 140mm setting? I ask because I am considering the Trance SX but for most of my ride I would prefer the steeper head angle and shorter travel; there is some downhill that I would utilize the 160mm setting on. I just think the SX has such a superior build I would prefer it to the "regular" Trance.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post
    this thread pretty much confirms I am going to get a Trance carbon and put a 160mm Pike RCT3 on it. It should be much lighter than 30lb :P.
    Yep. And confirms why I put a 160/150 Pike on my 140mm Remedy... I have a Remedy SX (instead of getting the Slash).

    I rode a TranceX 140 and felt it was a great bike, but underforked.

    Sounds like you SX guys have figured it out for aggressive trail riding
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by goobernaculum View Post
    Perhaps a stupid question, but is there any downside to running a dual position Pike in the 140mm setting? I ask because I am considering the Trance SX but for most of my ride I would prefer the steeper head angle and shorter travel; there is some downhill that I would utilize the 160mm setting on. I just think the SX has such a superior build I would prefer it to the "regular" Trance.
    I asked myself the same and talked with the Sram guys about this. Their answer (in German was that constantly running the Pike in it's lowered 140mm position is perfectly fine (including downhills) and won't hurt the fork in any way.
    However, when in it's lowered position, the forks air spring characteristics will be slightly compromised due to it's enlarged negative airspring (that's how the DPA feature works). Or in other words, because the negative chamber gets bigger in the forks lowered position it affects the positive air chamber not only at the beginning of the stroke (as intended) but a bit further more and therefore slightly changing the overall forks characteristics/performance.

    So on my next run I put some closer attention to this. I shuttled up the mountain going down the freeride course to have some more downwhill-testing-time. When running the PIKE in it's lowered 140mm position I initially couldn't feel any significant difference. However, when going harder it seemed as if the progressive end part of the air spring was missing nearly completely, e.g. as if someone had just cut off the last 20mm of travel from the fork. Now the experience of one run is highly subjective and I'm sure people who actually own the DPA Pike could further elaborate on that issue. For me it's not a complete deal breaker as I feel the DPA feature is useful for extened climbs and you can still use the travel switch to "fix" the fork if necessary

    If you're interessted in running the fork in it's lowered position most of the time though keep in mind that FOX's new 2014+ TALAS forks use oil instead of air flow to balance out positive / negative air chambers when changing the forks travel thus resulting in a less/non-at-all-compromised performance when running in their lowered position..(Although I'd still take the PIKE over a FOX anytime

    hope that helps

  15. #15
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    I'd been having the same thoughts about the usability of the lowered position of the Pine DPA.

    Thanks for sharing the experience!

  16. #16
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    Awesome idea
    Quote Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post
    this thread pretty much confirms I am going to get a Trance carbon and put a 160mm Pike RCT3 on it. It should be much lighter than 30lb :P.

  17. #17
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    Great thread, both bikes rock as I road them at Interbike Dirt Demo all day a(the trance was the non sx)

    I like the snapiness of the trance advanced over the. Reign advanced , although. The trance advanced. 1has carbon hoops, so it feels almost as nimble as my Anthem advanced i own,

    I just road a demo 2014 trance and while great in alloy it just felt maybe a bit
    (A tad a) slower

    The trance sx is probably tge best. Overall bargain as far a bang for the buck with an awesome.spec, although. I wish it had a Reverb adj seatpost like the. Reign advanced 1

  18. #18
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    so what's the consensus about adjustable travel forks for the trance. pike dpa or fox 34 talas?

  19. #19
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    Hi there !
    Nice comparison.
    Could you please tell me if the Trance SX P-AM2 wheels are light and stiff enough?
    I have a 2014 Trance and i think of buing a used (new one) set of P-AM2 wheels in a very good price so i can upgrade my stock 19mm inner width and heavy Giant S-XC2 wheels.
    Thank you !

  20. #20
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    AFAIR, there rims are 500g each. These are redesigned original P-AM2 you could find on some cheaper Glories and Faith 2-3 years ago.
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  21. #21
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    I thought that those wheels would be light, cause of the fact that reign 2 and trance sx are expensive bikes.
    Any other that is experienced on this wheels?

  22. #22
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    Steel Calf - what's the difference between Plus and regular Monarch? Did you notice much difference?

    I was under an impression that Maestro doesn't require platform for rear shock in order to keep the rear end from bobbing while riding uphill.

    So, what's the final verdict on Reign vs Trance SX?

    What I got is basically this:

    Take Trance if:
    - You ride longer rides and go up/down a lot
    - Want a livelier feeling bike
    - Don't need top end speed on rough descents
    - Want an all round bike which can still go great down
    - It would be your only bike (+ DH bike optional)

    Go for Reign if:
    - You want the best performance riding downhill at high speed
    - You're not riding longer all day rides with lots of up-down riding
    - It would be your "aggressive" bike and you already own some more practical bike for riding extended periods and for covering longer distances.
    - You're racing enduro


    Quote Originally Posted by alexiskon View Post
    I thought that those wheels would be light, cause of the fact that reign 2 and trance sx are expensive bikes.
    Any other that is experienced on this wheels?
    I'd take heavier, sturdier wheels over something flexy and light any day.

    I'm not heavy (about 87-88kg) and I'm riding 29er with WTB KOM which are supposed to be great, but I'm not happy at all.
    I've dented the rear rim couple of times and it gave up on one technical descent so I'm on my second rear rim now.

    It's relatively light (but heavier than Crest I had before this) and I can't honestly tell if it's any stronger at all...

  23. #23
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    Ordered one of the last 2014 Trance Adv SX in the US. Amazing ride. I would definitely recommend the 2015 Aluxx version if you're shopping for a bike like this.


  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maistral View Post
    Steel Calf - what's the difference between Plus and regular Monarch? Did you notice much difference?

    I was under an impression that Maestro doesn't require platform for rear shock in order to keep the rear end from bobbing while riding uphill.
    I've no experience with non-plus monarch, but the shock on the SX felt great and as long as you don't ride out of the sattle often you won't need any plattform. I'd recommend to take a shockpump with you on the first few rides in order to fine tune rear shock pressure, you'll have to hit a target smaller than 10-15psi for optimum performance. Compared to my current FOX RP23 equipped bike which has the same amount of rear travel the Trance felt somehow planted when going uphill while beeing much plusher on the decents as if the bike had 160mm travel!

    Quote Originally Posted by Maistral View Post
    So, what's the final verdict on Reign vs Trance SX?

    What I got is basically this:

    Take Trance if:
    - You ride longer rides and go up/down a lot
    - Want a livelier feeling bike
    - Don't need top end speed on rough descents
    - Want an all round bike which can still go great down
    - It would be your only bike (+ DH bike optional)

    Go for Reign if:
    - You want the best performance riding downhill at high speed
    - You're not riding longer all day rides with lots of up-down riding
    - It would be your "aggressive" bike and you already own some more practical bike for riding extended periods and for covering longer distances.
    - You're racing enduro
    you nailed it. Apart from the enduro racing: The teamrider I met at the Giant booth uses a Trance SX for that...

    Reign will sell better than Trance SX, no doubt. But I bet the majority of people who had a chance to testride both would go for the SX afterwards, even though the Reign may look "more appealing on paper"...

  25. #25
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    I expected Giant with the introduction of the reign to reduce the trance sx to 150-130mm instead of 160-140mm. Would've made more sense than keeping the trance sx in it's current form next to the reign in the program.

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