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  1. #1
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    Trance X 29 vs Anthem X 29

    For those lucky enough to throw a leg over the new Trance X, did you feel you gave up a lot in the climbing department to the Anthem X? Cheers J.

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    The TX29 still climbs very well. If anything, I appreciate (and prefer) the slightly more compliant suspension on climbs, simply because it allows you to forget the small stuff and stay seated, which is ideal for slick sustained climbing. In fact, there aren't many times I notice it being "more bike" on the climbs unless it's pavement, or an end of the ride sprint back to the car.

    Descending, and generally just shredding, is where the TX29 shines though. I always felt like the AX29 was a bit of a sled, without all the perks. It were always as if I was entering a turn, and it always came out of the arc too soon. I always chalked it up to the long chainstays. On the TX29, the chainstays are shorter, and it feels a bunch better when cornering aggressively. It follows a more predictable arc, and I find myself riding it just like 26" TX. Oh, and it's provides the same confidence at the Reign X on descents, without all the squish.

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    Thanks Banshee. I love the Anthem but, with only one bike in my stable, it gets a little scary on the steep techy downhills. J

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    Hey Banshee - how tall are you/what size did you ride? I've heard they run a bit big.

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    I'm 5'11, lanky legs and arms, and ride a Large. I also ride a large TX26.

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    Cool, thanks. I'm 5'6" and glad I ordered a small when I started hearing about the long feel of it.

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    I currently ride a large Anthem X 29er and have a Trance X1 29er on pre-order, also in large. I'm 6' tall and I think it will be a good fit. I'm guessing (or convincing myself) that similar height pro-riders would go for a smaller, lighter weight frame in exchange for comfort (when on the border of frame sizing).

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    Quote Originally Posted by RancidSLP View Post
    I currently ride a large Anthem X 29er and have a Trance X1 29er on pre-order, also in large. I'm 6' tall and I think it will be a good fit. I'm guessing (or convincing myself) that similar height pro-riders would go for a smaller, lighter weight frame in exchange for comfort (when on the border of frame sizing).
    At 5 11, I'm holding out, to sit on one. Hope they'll be some Os left to order. I usually ride a L, have a L Ax 26r, but after reading the article on the other thread... I don't know. If AC is riding a M, maybe I should too...

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    im going through this debate myself. Time for a new ride, im going to wait till i can actually sit on a TX29

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    At 5'10 I ride a S anthem 26er (I am on the border, and can ride an M, but prefer the S) so will probably be on a S Trance 29er but want to wait till I can ride one first. Our dealer out here does not think they will get any until October!

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    I rode a TX29 this past weekend when the Giant Demo truck came to town. I'm 5'6" and the small was a perfect fit for me. BTW, it rode very well. I wasn't expecting that big of a differene from the TX26!! Might be my next bike if I can come up with the cash, as the 0 is pretty expensive.

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    Rally - thanks for the input. I've been a bit worried about it, even though I was pretty confident on my sizing.

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    I'm 5'9", but with short legs (30" inseam). I ride a M Tx26r, but it looks like I will have to go with a S Tx29r. I'd rather it be moderately small than even a little big. Going to definitely sit/ride on one first though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Banshee Rider View Post
    The TX29 still climbs very well. If anything, I appreciate (and prefer) the slightly more compliant suspension on climbs, simply because it allows you to forget the small stuff and stay seated, which is ideal for slick sustained climbing. In fact, there aren't many times I notice it being "more bike" on the climbs unless it's pavement, or an end of the ride sprint back to the car.

    Descending, and generally just shredding, is where the TX29 shines though. I always felt like the AX29 was a bit of a sled, without all the perks. It were always as if I was entering a turn, and it always came out of the arc too soon. I always chalked it up to the long chainstays. On the TX29, the chainstays are shorter, and it feels a bunch better when cornering aggressively. It follows a more predictable arc, and I find myself riding it just like 26" TX. Oh, and it's provides the same confidence at the Reign X on descents, without all the squish.
    Are you running a single ring or a front mech? Having any problems with the chain staying on? Press in bb with no tabs is a bit disappointing

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    Quote Originally Posted by RancidSLP View Post
    I currently ride a large Anthem X 29er and have a Trance X1 29er on pre-order, also in large. I'm 6' tall and I think it will be a good fit. I'm guessing (or convincing myself) that similar height pro-riders would go for a smaller, lighter weight frame in exchange for comfort (when on the border of frame sizing).
    From Pinkbike's first look:

    At 6'2" in height, our size Large test Trance X 29 felt a bit reachy, even for trails of the absolute cross-country variety. If we were to spend an extended period aboard the Trance X 29, we'd mount something in the 70-80mm stem length for optimal comfort.
    Hopefully my LBS has a Medium I can try out too!

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    Quote Originally Posted by mtb-ripper View Post
    Are you running a single ring or a front mech? Having any problems with the chain staying on? Press in bb with no tabs is a bit disappointing
    I run 2x10 on it. 28/38 with an 11-36. The direct-mount front derailleur standard is easily the slickest thing going right now. Very stiff interface, and very simple.

    These days, there's really no reason not to embrace it IMO. The 2x cranksets have such stiff chainrings in close enough quarters that front shifting is tight and smooth, and chain rub isn't an issue. When matched with a clutch rear derailleur the drivetrain gets even quieter, and rarely throws chains when the going gets rough (especially in the big ring, when the chainwrap is greater, and the tension on the clutch increases).

    I was a diehard proponent of 1x chainguide systems for 5 years, so I get where you're coming from. But these days, the only bike I have a chainguide on is my Glory. They've finally figured it out.

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    Is the stand over height right on on the geometry charts on Giant's website? For example a medium Trance X (26er) is 30" and medium Trance X 29er is 26.4" and a medium Anthem 29er is 30.3". This just seems odd to me that the TX 29er is so much lower than the other two.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brooks04 View Post
    Is the stand over height right on on the geometry charts on Giant's website? For example a medium Trance X (26er) is 30" and medium Trance X 29er is 26.4" and a medium Anthem 29er is 30.3". This just seems odd to me that the TX 29er is so much lower than the other two.
    The top tube on the TX 29er is much different than the other two bikes. The old TX 26er used to have a different top tube geometry which led to a lower stand over height as well.

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    For those that have ordered a Trance X 29er without riding it. I sure hope you picked the right size frame. These bikes in particular run big in frame size. Just today I sold a Trance X2 29er to a guest that was 6' 2" (XL frame), it was later determined that he fit much better on a "L" frame.

    I had a Trance X1 29er in a "M" frame and that was too big for me and I'm 5' 6". Wasn't too satisfied with the bike so I sold it on CL already. As for the bike availability our stores have all models in all sizes EXCEPT "XS" We got the X1's first, then X2's and about a week and a half ago we got the X0's.

    My opinion on the Trance X1 29er vs. my 2012.5 Anthem X4 29er:
    For some reason the Trance X1 29er wasn't doing it for me. I dialed everything in over and over again. The guy I sold it to loves it immensely. I prefer that XC/race oriented bike. But as weird as this sounds, I rode the Trance X2 29er on the trail the other day and I loved it. The only major modification I would add to it would be a Rock Shox RL rear shock. As opposed the Monarch R it has on there (just rebound controls). The brakes and shifting felt much more fluid and smoother on the X2 model as opposed to the X1.

    Now I'm stuck. Do I keep my 4" travel Anthem and upgrade my rear shock and eventually wheels, followed by front fork and brake set to make it the way I want...or...do I, sell the Anthem and get the Trance with 5" of travel, with the brakes I want on it already and just upgrade the shock and wheels over time (all I would change on the Trance)?

    As for the 29er wheel, people can say what they want. I prefer rolling over obstacles...not going around them. I prefer pedaling and getting lots of speed and momentum, not pedaling my face off to keep others in my site.

    Biggest difference between Trance and Anthem besides travel was frame geometry. As well as the slacked out angle of the seat post as opposed to the near straight up variance on the Anthem.

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    I got a chance to demo both Anthem X advanced and Trance on Saturday. Biggest difference I could feel (other than suspension) was slacker head tube angle of Trance. More deliberate and slower turning bike than AX. The Giant demo guy said it was his fav Giant MTB...and he owns a AX. They are both great bikes...just slightly different use models.

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    My large Anthem X 29er next to my medium Trance X 29er.




  22. #22
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    Can you get a side profile shot of the 2 side by side?
    Current:
    2013 Giant Trance X2 29er

    Previous:
    2012.5 Giant Anthem X4 29er (SOLD)
    2013 Giant Trance X1 29er (SOLD)

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    I tried, but it's hard because of the bars and depth of field.

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    Well think we can all vouch that the TX makes for easier stand over height.
    Current:
    2013 Giant Trance X2 29er

    Previous:
    2012.5 Giant Anthem X4 29er (SOLD)
    2013 Giant Trance X1 29er (SOLD)

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    So sizing aside, how did you guys feel about the ride of the Trance vs the Anthem? I was pretty much sold on the Anthem (I'm going to do a few XC races next year) but the Trance looks like a better all-arounder. I'll be upgrading from a hardtail, so the 4" travel on the Anthem will probably be enough for me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JTAC View Post
    For those that have ordered a Trance X 29er without riding it. I sure hope you picked the right size frame. These bikes in particular run big in frame size. Just today I sold a Trance X2 29er to a guest that was 6' 2" (XL frame), it was later determined that he fit much better on a "L" frame.

    I had a Trance X1 29er in a "M" frame and that was too big for me and I'm 5' 6".

    This corresponds to the Giant sizing chart:

    https://www17.corecommerce.com/~push...ng%20Guide.pdf

    6'2" is right in the middle of a large.
    5'6" is right in the middle of a small.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by j__h View Post
    This corresponds to the Giant sizing chart:

    https://www17.corecommerce.com/~push...ng%20Guide.pdf

    6'2" is right in the middle of a large.
    5'6" is right in the middle of a small.
    FYI - I was told today that this size guide, going around online, is bogus, and not from Giant, according to their Giant Rep. Just be cautious about using this as your sole fit guide.

    I'm 5'11" and sat on a Large Tx29 today. It needed a 90mm stem (has 100), but other than that, I don't see how I would be comfortable on a Medium, but I'm waiting for them to get one, so I can see for myself. That fit guide says I should be on a Medium in everything... I ride a L anthem currently.

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    Oh interesting...

    Yeah I actually tried to find that on Giants website and could not find it. I figured that nobody would put that much time to make a non official size chart for the Giant bikes... Looks like I was wrong. I got it from another thread here.


    I am going to get a Trance X 29er medium. measurements, 5' 9.5"

    The bike shop only had a medium and it felt fine... I hope that the others (maybe a small) is not a better fit.

  29. #29
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    ... and if we just ... I like the TX 29

    I am 5' 9" and I ride a medium in both bikes. I thought about keeping my Anthem, but I like the Trance enough that I just sold my Anthem. The Trance really climbs pretty good and makes up for anything lost climbing on the flat or the down hill. I replaced the brakes with SLX brakes (which are awesome) and I replaced the 2x10 for a 3 x10. The 2 x 10 really isn't nearly as bad as I thought, but there are some long climbs in my area that I prefer the lower gear. Bottom line I love the bike and would purchase the Trance over the Anthem for my type of riding.

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    Quote Originally Posted by trip221 View Post
    So sizing aside, how did you guys feel about the ride of the Trance vs the Anthem? I was pretty much sold on the Anthem (I'm going to do a few XC races next year) but the Trance looks like a better all-arounder. I'll be upgrading from a hardtail, so the 4" travel on the Anthem will probably be enough for me.
    For xc racing go for the anthem. If it's more trail/marathon/(light) enduro go for the trance.
    A friend of mine though said that he never has regret in his life bying a bike with bigger/more suspensions. Which he couldn't say for his xc race bikes. Him being a former belgian xc champion did it for me. So i've bought a trance. But i'm not going to ride xc races. If i did i'd go for the anthem.

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    Have not ridden the TX29 so can't comment on it. But the AX29 is much more verstile than most realize.

    A simple cockpit adjustment (shorter stem, higher rise wide bars) and possibly 120mm fork up front make a very capable trail machine. Going with a light wheelset and lowering the cockpit turns it instantly into a race machine. I've never felt like I needed more suspension at the rear, but at the front sometimes having 120mm can help on very rough terrain.

    I've raced the AX29 and now have it setup more like a trail bike. It does both extremely well with the proper adjustments.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by d365 View Post
    FYI - I was told today that this size guide, going around online, is bogus, and not from Giant, according to their Giant Rep. Just be cautious about using this as your sole fit guide.

    I'm 5'11" and sat on a Large Tx29 today. It needed a 90mm stem (has 100), but other than that, I don't see how I would be comfortable on a Medium, but I'm waiting for them to get one, so I can see for myself. That fit guide says I should be on a Medium in everything... I ride a L anthem currently.
    I just wanted to update, for others. I sat on a M Tx2. I prefer the M, with 100mm stem, but the seatpost is at max, and the seat is as far back as it can go, which is a concern. All with stock post (non-dropper, 20mm offset), seat, etc. The L just felt too large, by comparison, and the M was much more agile feeling. I think I am dead in between sizes, which makes the decision difficult. Not sure what to do.....

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    Going by the Giant chart would mean both a 5'7 and 6' riders should fit on a M. That's a big height difference to be going for the same size. Tough choice.

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    I'm 5'11", w/ a 32" inseam, and am going w/ large. The top tube is just too short on the M for my tastes, and the L is pretty close to my friend's L Camber and my 19" GF Paragon that I'm comfortable w/.

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    Quote Originally Posted by d365 View Post
    I just wanted to update, for others. I sat on a M Tx2. I prefer the M, with 100mm stem, but the seatpost is at max, and the seat is as far back as it can go, which is a concern. All with stock post (non-dropper, 20mm offset), seat, etc. The L just felt too large, by comparison, and the M was much more agile feeling. I think I am dead in between sizes, which makes the decision difficult. Not sure what to do.....
    100mm stem is long, especially with the slack head angle.

    An 80mm stem on the L will make it more agile.

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    Chart sizes alone are meaningless. You need torso + leg proportion to accurately determine reach + standover. Everyone is unique!

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    For those who are interested in weights between the two bikes. Both have XT components.

    Anthem advanced 1, Large, w/spd pedals, Australian spec = 12.0kgs(approx).
    Trance x 29er 0, Large, w/spd pedals, Australian spec = 13.5kgs(approx).

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dictatorsaurus View Post
    Going by the Giant chart would mean both a 5'7 and 6' riders should fit on a M. That's a big height difference to be going for the same size. Tough choice.
    Size charts will give you a guide, but Nothing can beat a proper test ride out on some trails.

    And like a few of you out there, I've had a query about which is the right size Trance X29er ?

    I'm 6' with a 34" inseam.

    Finally got a chance to get out on the TX29er-0 today and according to the size chart I'm right on the border of M and L, so I took both sizes out for a good spin.

    Now conventional wisdom says, if you are in between sizes or borderline, go for the smaller size frame. For reference, I've been riding a Medium Anthem X29er for over a year now.

    Well............back to my opening point (nothing beats a test ride). I rode the M frame first. Felt good, more plush than my AX29, still climbed well (with Fox suspension set to climb), really nice to jump, confidence inspiring in the corners and lots of fun to descend. Yet, something just didn't quite click, couldn't exactly put my finger on what it was. My thought was maybe I just needed a bit more adjustment time from my AX29er.

    Then I took out the L frame. A couple of minutes out on the trail and it was like this bike was an old friend. Everything just clicked!

    The extra top tube length just felt right. I think I've found the next bike. And it goes to highlight how a good tet ride, back to back testing and going with what feels right for YOU is what really matters.

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    How tall are you rancid?

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    Quote Originally Posted by richulr View Post
    How tall are you rancid?
    6'

    I needed a longer seatpost, but otherwise I'm happy with my medium.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JTAC View Post
    Can you get a side profile shot of the 2 side by side?
    Ask and you shall receive:
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Trance X 29 vs Anthem X 29-gopr5573.jpg  


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    Quote Originally Posted by cms_atx View Post
    I'm 5'11", w/ a 32" inseam, and am going w/ large. The top tube is just too short on the M for my tastes, and the L is pretty close to my friend's L Camber and my 19" GF Paragon that I'm comfortable w/.
    I am 5'10" w/ a 31" inseam and currently ride a small 2009 Anthem X1, and will be test riding a S Trance 29er X0 in a couple weeks. Will test the M as well, but the S Anthem fits me perfectly. Interesting how even though we are within an inch of each other, we are two bike sizes apart

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by motomuppet View Post
    I am 5'10" w/ a 31" inseam and currently ride a small 2009 Anthem X1, and will be test riding a S Trance 29er X0 in a couple weeks. Will test the M as well, but the S Anthem fits me perfectly. Interesting how even though we are within an inch of each other, we are two bike sizes apart
    Wow, it's interesting to read that someone who is a good 6" taller than I am and an inseam 1 1/2" longer and we ride the same size bike? And yet the small Trance X 29er feels awesome to me and in no way does it feel too big. In fact, where others have been shoving the seat forward, I actually put mine back to about right in the middle of the rails and still have some bend in my arms. Of course the small also comes with a shorter stem (70mm). Just seems for someone of your height that a small would be too small? But you know, my friend has a small Anthem and that, to me, feels larger. I'll be interested to see which one you feel fits better. There really does seem to be a large fit margin with this bike.

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    This shows how the suspension characteristics differ between both.
    [ Just compare Forces and Ignore Gradient]

    It's not shown on these graphs, but the Tx 29 has lower antisquat and leverage ratio than the AX29er and 26" TX. It does show that the Tx 29 wil use it's travel easier than both the AX 29er and the 26" TX. It should climb similar on smooth climbs[ 10- 20mm travel] but sink in to it's travel more on technical climbs. On the way down it should soak up square edge hits smoother and sink deeper in to it's travel especially on seated g outs and drops.

    Note your only getting 10 mm more travel with the Tx29er over the Ax29er but they should ride quite differently.
    Attached Images Attached Images   
    Last edited by gvs_nz; 10-27-2012 at 12:43 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by petey15 View Post
    Wow, it's interesting to read that someone who is a good 6" taller than I am and an inseam 1 1/2" longer and we ride the same size bike? And yet the small Trance X 29er feels awesome to me and in no way does it feel too big. In fact, where others have been shoving the seat forward, I actually put mine back to about right in the middle of the rails and still have some bend in my arms. Of course the small also comes with a shorter stem (70mm). Just seems for someone of your height that a small would be too small? But you know, my friend has a small Anthem and that, to me, feels larger. I'll be interested to see which one you feel fits better. There really does seem to be a large fit margin with this bike.
    I ended up buying the M. Had both the S and the M out on the trails for tests over the weekend, and they both worked for me, but I found the M felt a bit better. The S felt a bit too short and a bit cramped. Could have chucked a longer stem on, but the M just fit perfect.

    Have managed three rides on the bike so far (demo'd the M and S, then bought my M and got a ride in on that), and love it. Am still getting the set up sorted, but this really is an awesome bike. Very much lived up to the hype in my eyes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gvs_nz View Post
    This shows how the suspension characteristics differ between both.
    [ Just compare Forces and Ignore Gradient]

    It's not shown on these graphs, but the Tx 29 has lower antisquat and leverage ratio than the AX29er and 26" TX. It does show that the Tx 29 wil use it's travel easier than both the AX 29er and the 26" TX. It should climb similar on smooth climbs[ 10- 20mm travel] but sink in to it's travel more on technical climbs. On the way down it should soak up square edge hits smoother and sink deeper in to it's travel especially on seated g outs and drops.

    Note your only getting 10 mm more travel with the Tx29er over the Ax29er but they should ride quite differently.
    Thats really interesting, but does it take into account the propedal/CTD settings on the suspension? I rode the Ax29er with the propedal platform, and the CTD platform (that is on my Tx29er) is significantly better imho. With only 10-15mm difference in total travel between the two, the Tx in D mode feels waaay longer than the Ax in the 'open' setting. And in the C mode, feels just as firm as the Ax with the propedal on. Tx wanders a bit more on climbs than the Ax, but I am going to flip my stem to get more weight forward and see if that helps.

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    As you say it doesn't take in to count shock tune, that in itself makes a big difference. Giant has a custom tune and the 2011/ 2012 26" Tx boost valve shock tune was very soft compared to the same velocity tune on the Ax29er.That may carry over to the CTD shock on the 29er TX.

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    Actual wheelbase trance 29

    Thought I would add some data on sizing, I am kind of a dweeb and carry a tape measure when test riding bikes. The trance 29 wheelbase specification on the giant website is easily 0.75 inches too short for the medium size, I confirmed this on the medium size for both the 0 level (fox fork) and the 2 level (rockshox). To be clear, the bikes are longer than the website indicates. Further measurements showed that this was due to a longer front center, because the chainstay is pretty close.

    Given the shaping of modern seat tubes, and our ability to move saddle fore and aft, in my humble opinion the ETT is actually much less informative than the wheelbase minus the chainstay length (front center), along with the head tube angle of course. This suggests to me that those used to riding a large all mountain frame might find the medium a better fit.

    So where is the error? Cant be sure, but...From eyeing the two bikes side by side, I also noticed that the head tube is notably slacker than the Santa Cruz tallboy ltc, which I also tested, even though the specifications from both manufacturers suggest that they are the same. I also noticed that the handling of the giant was a bit slower than the Santa Cruz, which is consistent with this observation. Could be that the head tube is slacker than specified and moves the front wheel out.

    Hope this helps.

  49. #49
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    I'm the same, I always compare bikes using BB as datem. It stuffs things up a bit moving between wheel sizes though as you can get away with a shorter front centre on a 29er due to it's stability.

    I thought the LTc was a bit steeper? I find the Fox forks steer a little slower than other brands with the same offset, possibly due to a bit of flex. You may find the LTc ,with it's carbon frame, is stiffer and has the same effect?My 09 TX 26", when I use a 140mm fork, steers much slower than other bikes with similar geometry. I can only put that down to frame flex,which is noticeable in other aspects of the ride.

    How do you compare the two rear suspensions.Is there a huge difference in depth of travel feel? Giant seams to have gone to a very soft riding tune in recent years to improve sharp edge hit performance, relying on shock propedal and CTD settings to firm up the ride for climbing.
    Last edited by gvs_nz; 12-26-2012 at 01:41 PM.

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    someone else bust out their tape measure and confirm this

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    Ok, your measuring post had me intrigued. Seeing as I work at a Giant dealer I thought I'd get to the bottom of this. I had the help of two other guys as well.

    Here's what we found:

    Sure enough, all the Trance X29ers have longer than advertised wheelbases. Varying between half an inch and just over half an inch, depending on the size of the bike. All other models were accurate.

    We had to get to the bottom of "why" so here's what we think it is:

    The head tubes are slacker by 1 degree. Across the size range they are all 68.5 degrees. This also shortens the top tube by nearly an inch. Of course this would also lengthen the wheelbase. The chainstay measurements are accurate btw.

    We think that the catalog was published prior to the final models being built. This would explain why all the other Giant models were correct, they aren't first editions.

    We even called our local Giant rep, he was as interested in our findings as we were and had never heard of this before. He also agrees it is a first production not matching the catalog issue.

    In all honesty I think this makes it a better trail bike, however it is good to know for sizing.

    As an aside, I usually ride an XL Giant. For the Trance X29er, I feel much better on the Large.

    This is all thanks to Epic Biking in Saratoga Springs Utah, FYI.

    Thanks for giving us something to do!

    P.S., we checked it on all three models, the 0 and 1 use Fox, the 2 uses RS. No change, the numbers were still off.
    Last edited by Silentfoe; 12-26-2012 at 06:25 PM.
    I'm a mountain bike guide in southwest Utah

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    My Ax29er is slacker, and my Tx 26" has longer chainstays than the Giant spec charts.With that their WB measurement is probably wrong as well. Not the only mfg bikes I've had that varied from spec sheets.

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    Thanks, Silentfoe, for doing a proper job of the wheelbase and head tube angle measurements. Your numbers for the wheelbase (0.5+ inches longer than advertised) could be just right (rather than my 0.75+ estimate), I was there with the tape measure and the mechanics giving me the hairy eyeball and all.

    Thanks also for diagnosing the head tube angle with some real data. I did notice the slacker feel of the Giant Trance 29er headtube when riding side by side with the SCTBLTc, confirmed qualitatively by comparing the zero sag slopes of the two forks. Both frames felt plenty stiff etc and we took care with the fork pressure and sag, so this is a true difference in handling and buyers should consider it (along with the epic difference in price point).

    In the case of head tube angle at least, I think Giant might sell even more bikes if they make the correction. The bike performed beautifully in my brief test ride, but given the steering feel it definitely may have longer "downhill" legs than people might gather from the specs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bikengineer View Post
    In the case of head tube angle at least, I think Giant might sell even more bikes if they make the correction. The bike performed beautifully in my brief test ride, but given the steering feel it definitely may have longer "downhill" legs than people might gather from the specs.
    Possibly not and the cynic may say that they deliberately have misleading specs considering their marketing push has been " sharp handling " due to the shorter chainstays from the redesigned single spar swingarm.

    Slacker and longer sounds good to me though. But I'm not the target market.

  55. #55
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    I really think it was just a matter of the catalog coming before the production model was made.

    As far as the "single spar" swing arm, all the maestro models have different swingarms. I agree that it has something to do with the shorter chainstays but I think the real reason is the modified seat tube. Having it "bent" the way it is, gives a lot more clearance for the 29er wheels. I'll bet you see a corrected catalog next year.
    I'm a mountain bike guide in southwest Utah

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    Trying to decide what to buy trance 29 er or anthem x 29 er? Just joined the mtbr forum. Replacing a hard tail stump jumper that is 15 hrs old. I'm sur both would fit me fine, and it looks like the trance is the way I would go. Having shimano components on the stump jumper have me a little worried about SRAM! For someone that rides 4-5 times a month is it worth the money to upgrade to the 1 or 0?

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    Quote Originally Posted by hdpjr View Post
    Trying to decide what to buy trance 29 er or anthem x 29 er? Just joined the mtbr forum. Replacing a hard tail stump jumper that is 15 hrs old. I'm sur both would fit me fine, and it looks like the trance is the way I would go. Having shimano components on the stump jumper have me a little worried about SRAM! For someone that rides 4-5 times a month is it worth the money to upgrade to the 1 or 0?
    The AX29 rides a bit more racy and has 100mm of travel. The AX29 has 5" of travel and is a tad more upright feeling. The head angle for the TX29 is 69.5 degrees, the AX29 71.0. A slacker h/a generally feels a little more 'relaxed' and generally geared more towards 'Trail' bikes, versus XC bikes.

    Both bikes have their strengths, but I would say if you're more of an XC rider look at the Anthem. If you're more AM/Trail oriented than look towards the AX29. I ride a mix and have a TX29-1 on the way. Demo both and you'll know which one you like best.
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    If I decide to go with a trance, should I upgrade to the 1 or 0 if I ride 4-5 times a month?

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    more on your question...

    Let me summarize what I've gleaned from some research and test riding these nice bikes:

    1) The parts spec is quite reasonable for the price on the Trance 29er at all three levels, and the weights are comparable for the 1 and 2 levels with a nice drop in weight for the 0 level. One reason the weight is comparable for the 1 and 2 levels is that you add on a dropper post at the 1 level, which is nice but heavier than a standard post at the 2 level, and this compensates for the lighter parts. The 0 level cuts the weight significantly even with the dropper post owing to the nice groupset and lighter fork.

    Dropper posts are a nice thing to have, but don't buy the 1 or the 0 level just for this feature, as you can get them aftermarket. The new Giant post feels just fine in the shop, but dropper posts can be highly unreliable (I've had multiple models fail on the trail, bummer) and I would rather go with something more proven given the choice.

    One other important consideration, very important in fact: The two more expensive levels (1 and 0) use a new standard for the tapered fork upper diameter where the stem clamps on, whereas the 2 level has a standard tapered steerer that is compatible with the headsets and stems that are on the rest of the bikes coming out this year. If you are going to buy the bike and leave things alone, this will not matter much, but if you find yourself wanting to change stem lengths or fork or whatever later on, it will be significantly more of a pain to do so at the 1 and 0 levels.

    Finally, going back to your original comment, I own an anthem 29er and have ridden it everywhere from Moab to Bootleg to the smooth trails in my home area, and it is an awesome and capable bike. Just about cleared slickrock counterclockwise on my first attempt on this bike, and had a blast the next day descending porcupine rim, these are dramatically different terrains and the bike excelled in both environments. Since the Moab trip I have been running the bike with 120 up front for a slacker feel, and the rear suspension is sufficiently plush that it feels very well balanced like this.

    One more point, I'll just throw in, not that it matters much - when we built up my anthem 29er, we removed headset and bottom bracket to upgrade these parts, and took the opportunity to weigh the frame only on a precision scale in the size large. It was within a few grams of santa cruz tallboy there in the shop. Giant knows how to make aluminum frames strong and light.

    Enjoy the decision and the trails later on!

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    Thanks for the help! Basically it sounds like if I'm a weekend rider that the trance x 29 we 2 would fit my needs. When I bought the stump jumper it was second from the top of the line with shinano lx and xt components, and that's why I'm leaning twoards the top of the line trance even though I don't think I ride enough to justify $4,250 for the 0! In your opinion riding maybe once a weekend in Georgia, would the SRAM 5/7 and rock shox be fine or comparable to LX/XT from 15 years ago?

  61. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by hdpjr View Post
    Thanks for the help! Basically it sounds like if I'm a weekend rider that the trance x 29 we 2 would fit my needs. When I bought the stump jumper it was second from the top of the line with shinano lx and xt components, and that's why I'm leaning twoards the top of the line trance even though I don't think I ride enough to justify $4,250 for the 0! In your opinion riding maybe once a weekend in Georgia, would the SRAM 5/7 and rock shox be fine or comparable to LX/XT from 15 years ago?
    The TX29-1 is a nice blend between the 0 and 2 and has much better suspension than the 2. If I were going to ride that infrequently, however, a TX29-2 would be plenty serviceable. I, personally, would not invest $4k in a bike that I was going to ride 4-5 times/mo, but that's me. If you're hesitant on the 0 then get the 1.
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    Sram parts work great and will be much better than your 15 year old stuff. Not really worth getting hung up on. We did a serious break down the other day between a TX0 and 1. The 1 is such a better value for the money. With the money you save between the two, you could upgrade the 1 and come out with a much better bike than the 0. It is definitely the nicest bike of the 3 models.
    I'm a mountain bike guide in southwest Utah

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    "In all honesty I think this makes it a better trail bike, however it is good to know for sizing.

    As an aside, I usually ride an XL Giant. For the Trance X29er, I feel much better on the Large."

    That's strange I actually had the opposite experience. I usually ride a medium 29er or medium freeride bike. Ironically I prefer riding a small Trance X or XTC (26 ) to the medium bikes.

    However for whatever reason I felt more comfortable on the large Trance X 29er than the Medium Trance X 29er. The medium Trance X 29er felt very similar to my small 2011 Trance X 2er with 140mm fork and 90 mm stem.

  64. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silentfoe View Post
    Sram parts work great and will be much better than your 15 year old stuff. Not really worth getting hung up on. We did a serious break down the other day between a TX0 and 1. The 1 is such a better value for the money. With the money you save between the two, you could upgrade the 1 and come out with a much better bike than the 0. It is definitely the nicest bike of the 3 models.
    I agree the 1 definitely looks like the best value. I'm curious, what specifically would you upgrade on the 1 for the price difference from the 0? My initial thought is wheels and brakes. Would you do anything with the drivetrain or other parts?

  65. #65
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    No, you are on the right track. The brakes are generally horrible and the wheels could definitely use an upgrade. I would throw a set of Stans Arch EX on there along with a set of either SLX or XT brakes. Sitting at about $800 or less with those upgrades and you are still cheaper than the difference between the 0 and 1. After that I'd just wait for parts to break. The seats are crap btw. Not necessarily the build or comfort but the coloring will start wearing off after the first 5 hard minutes on the bike.
    I'm a mountain bike guide in southwest Utah

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    After everyone's advice I went to buy a trance x 29 er 1 for $2775.00, and of course they did not have my size! The giant dealer then tried to sell me an anthem x 29 er 1 for $2,875.00. The anthem has xt/SLX vs. SRAM x7/x9 on the trance, the anthem has avid 5 vs trances avid 3. The trance has the drop seat (which scares me) and a fox float CTD boost valve rear shock (don't know what that is). Anyone got any advice? I ride trails in Georgia! Thx

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    Make them order the Trance 1 or buy from another shop.

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    I was just curious was the anthem a better deal with the shimano vs SRAM and other option differences? I'm riding a 20 year old bike and don't have a clue about the spec's.

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    Go with the bike you want!!! I'm looking at new bikes as well, and decided that the Anthem X 29 would be better for my needs than the Trance X 29, so opposite of your situation. Still some other options out there, but point is if I walked into a Giant dealer ready to pull the trigger on an Anthem and they tried to get me on a Trance, I wouldn't go for it - have them order it.

    As far as components, I prefer Shimano myself, but if I were looking at the Trance I wouldn't let the SRAM stuff steer me away at all. Haven't owned the Avids, but I doubt they're very different between the 3 and 5 and from what I read they're not very good. But I wouldn't let that stop me, both bikes seem to be great values. Dropper posts are great, but if you don't need it at your trails or you don't like 'em, can the shop credit it and put a solid post on for you?

    Lastly, I would think that you could pay less than the prices you posted as those are msrp, my lbs has both bikes for quite a bit less...

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    Avid 5 is rubbish, noisy as sh*t too.

    As someone else said, go with the bike you want; frame geometry being the main discriminator. If you have to upgrade components, then so be it.


    Quote Originally Posted by hdpjr View Post
    After everyone's advice I went to buy a trance x 29 er 1 for $2775.00, and of course they did not have my size! The giant dealer then tried to sell me an anthem x 29 er 1 for $2,875.00. The anthem has xt/SLX vs. SRAM x7/x9 on the trance, the anthem has avid 5 vs trances avid 3. The trance has the drop seat (which scares me) and a fox float CTD boost valve rear shock (don't know what that is). Anyone got any advice? I ride trails in Georgia! Thx

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    Quote Originally Posted by GT5050 View Post
    Go with the bike you want!!! I'm looking at new bikes as well, and decided that the Anthem X 29 would be better for my needs than the Trance X 29, so opposite of your situation. Still some other options out there, but point is if I walked into a Giant dealer ready to pull the trigger on an Anthem and they tried to get me on a Trance, I wouldn't go for it - have them order it.

    As far as components, I prefer Shimano myself, but if I were looking at the Trance I wouldn't let the SRAM stuff steer me away at all. Haven't owned the Avids, but I doubt they're very different between the 3 and 5 and from what I read they're not very good. But I wouldn't let that stop me, both bikes seem to be great values. Dropper posts are great, but if you don't need it at your trails or you don't like 'em, can the shop credit it and put a solid post on for you?

    Lastly, I would think that you could pay less than the prices you posted as those are msrp, my lbs has both bikes for quite a bit less...
    I was just going to buy the trance b/c it was the "new" bike out, I'm riding around Georgia, whats your opinion of the trance vs anthem? Most all of the bike shops around Atlanta, GA wont move off of MSRP, anyone got any advice?

  72. #72
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    If you're not racing, go Trance. It will be able to handle anything you throw at it, particularly more technical stuff. It will also leave you "room to grow" if you decide you want to get into riding other places with drops, etc. Just my .02

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    I agree. I don't have an opinion of Trance 29 vs. Anthem 29 as I've only ridden an Anthem, but buy the bike for intended application. That said, I think the Anthem may also be suitable for someone who doesn't race, just depends on the terrain and type of riding they intend to do. Ideal situation is ride both if you can, but we all know that sometimes that's not possible except in the shop's parking lot. But it could at least give you a feel for the handling characteristics of each. Trance is supposedly quite nimble, but will have more plush feel, Anthem is a little less plush and less burly for real technical stuff but perhaps a bit faster.

    If I get a Giant, it will be the Anthem X 29 simply because of where I ride and the fact that I intend to do a few races for fun. I'm looking for a bike that's fun to ride as a "trail bike" but one that I can race with and I'm not wasting efficiency. Well no doubt the Anthem is good for racing, but what blew me away is that it felt like a very versatile bike when I rode one - it handled everything I could throw at it as good or better than my 26 inch Trance X. I do take my bike once or twice a year to places where the Trance 29 or even a Reign would probably be better than an Anthem, but I'm more inclined to buy something based on my normal use rather than the one-offs.

    BUT, if I had no intention of racing whatsoever, or if the racing in my area was Super D/Enduro type stuff (I wish) I'd probably go with the Trance 29er. Being a Trance 26 owner I was pretty excited about the launch of the 29er, and I'd love to say I lived in an area where I need more bike than the Anthem but it's not quite the case. In GA I'd be inclined to think that you had more varied terrain and the Trance would be the ticket.

  74. #74
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    Just go pull the trigger on a bike and let us know when you get it (with pics).
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    Is everyone paying MSRP?

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    Most shops have some wiggle room on price. You can also find better prices sometimes if you buy online, but if your LBS includes free tuneups if you buy a bike from them, it might be worth it to deal with them. See if they'll match a better price somewhere? The worst they can do is say no.

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    I would think this is on the lower end of pricing, but shop near me has Trance X 29er 1 for $2399 and Anthem X 29er 1 for $2499.

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    Where would that be as far as a location?

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    Probably a bit far from you - South FL. The time it took to drive and gas would eat up the savings...

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    Quote Originally Posted by hdpjr View Post
    Anyone got any advice? I ride trails in Georgia! Thx
    What trails do you ride in GA? I have both the AX29 and TX29 and have ridden many of the trails in the ATL and N. GA and might be able to help with my opinion

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    Stinky in Ptree city, blankets in canton, ellijay and Chatsworth ga. Any help is appreciated

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    Never ridden Stinky, but have ridden Blankets and many of the trails in Ellijay. In fact, I took both bikes with me in Nov for a weekend at Mulberry Gap. For reference, I have the 2012 Anthem XO and the Trance 29 X1. For those trails, the TX29 was more fun. You could definitely feel the extra weight on the climbs, so they took more effort but the payoff was much better once the trail turned downhill. For trails around the metro area, like Blankets, Chicopee Woods, Ft. Yargo, etc, the AX29 would be MY choice. Those trails are mostly smooth, fast GA red clay, so the extra travel of the TX has little to no advantage. I wonder if the AX29 wouldn't be the better choice considering that you're coming off a hardtail. You might find that the TX suspension is a little too active. All the trails you mentioned are well within the capability of both bikes. It just boils down to your style of riding and whether you put more emphasis on efficiency at the expense of some descending prowess (AX29) or want to haul ass downhill and don't mind lugging a heavier/slightly less efficient bike around the rest of the time (TX29). Really, your best bet would be to throw your leg over both bikes to see what you think. It's a bit surprising that a large city like ATL with a substantial cycling base doesn't have a shop with some demo fleet.

    On the components, personally I prefer Shimano over SRAM but I wouldn't let that be a factor in your decision. Both operate great and will be a huge upgrade over what you have now.

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    yes, "with pics" is the MOST important aspect here lol

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    Like I mentioned earlier, Shimano vs. Sram really shouldn't be an issue. Those two bikes are very similar in their component spec. The brakes on the Anthem are a step above the Trances.

    Either bike would serve you very well. If you are jonesing for a new bike and want it now, you really would be happy with the Anthem if that is what you have to have. I have an Anthem and I decided it is probably the best all around bike I've ever owned. I have also ridden a Trance X29er and while it's fun, it is a harder bike to climb on due to its geometry and we have A LOT of climbing here in Utah.

    What size bike are you looking for BTW?
    I'm a mountain bike guide in southwest Utah

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    Medium

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    I have owned both and still have the Trance. The Anthem suspension felt a lot firmer than the Trance and the bike was an amazing climber, it pratically pedaled itself up hills. I found it not so good for singletrack though, the bike felt long to me and took a lot to get used to.

    The Trance while being a very capable climber doesnt ascend as well as the Anthem but still cimbs very well. I find it is better at the downs and singletrack, the bike doesnt feel as long as the Anthem (even though its longer). The suspension is more more plusher, it feels the difference is more than the 20mm. The Trance feels like it wants to do jumps, drops and wheelies where as the Anthem didnt. The Trance is a much more fun bike. The Anthem is ideal for XC racing and all day missions imo

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    Quote Originally Posted by VERT1 View Post
    ........I have owned both and still have the Trance. The Anthem suspension felt a lot firmer than the Trance....
    Factor this point into your decision, its very true. A mate with a Anthem 29er sat on my Trance and said mine was like sitting on a cloud in comparison.

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    Quote Originally Posted by VERT1 View Post
    I have owned both and still have the Trance. The Anthem suspension felt a lot firmer than the Trance
    DId your Anthem have RockShox suspension?

    I have an 2012 AX29er2 w/RockShox front & rear suspension. It is a great bike that I plan on keeping. I want something more plush for riding more technical trails as the AX is a stiff ride. I'd also like more travel. I'll be demoing a Trance x1 in a few weeks. Then its the decision of a new bike (TX1 or Stumpjumper FSR Comp) or look into swapping out the fork on the AX with a Fox.....
    2015 Giant Anthem 29er
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    Quote Originally Posted by jclyle View Post
    DId your Anthem have RockShox suspension?

    I have an 2012 AX29er2 w/RockShox front & rear suspension. It is a great bike that I plan on keeping. I want something more plush for riding more technical trails as the AX is a stiff ride. I'd also like more travel. I'll be demoing a Trance x1 in a few weeks. Then its the decision of a new bike (TX1 or Stumpjumper FSR Comp) or look into swapping out the fork on the AX with a Fox.....

    Yes it had a SID on the Front and RT3 on the back

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    Renting an AX29er tomorrow to see how it compares. Although im really only interested in TX29er to 26" TX, the bike shop doesnt have any TX29ers for rent so im hoping I can kind of compare the 26 to the AX29 to get a feel of the different speeds and know that the TX29 will more than likely meet somewhere in the middle.

  91. #91
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    You need to be runing lots of sag[ 33 to 35%] in the Ax to get it to feel more trail rather than race. That way it would be closer to the TX in climb and descent. Tighten it up on race day.

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    Was not expecting the AX29 to be so different or for me to like it so much. I wasnt running out of steam nearly as easy and was also riding faster and doing more technical trails. Wasnt expecting it to be so willing to climb either. Looking forward to renting a TX29 on sunday (they do have them, the other employee was mistaken).

    After the first couple miles I was trying to convince myself that the 26" trance I had rented was setup wrong, but after the first trail I was grinning for the rest of the ride. The new bike will definitely have big wheels.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gvs_nz View Post

    It's not shown on these graphs, but the Tx 29 has lower antisquat and leverage ratio than the AX29er and 26" TX. It does show that the Tx 29 wil use it's travel easier than both the AX 29er and the 26" TX. It should climb similar on smooth climbs[ 10- 20mm travel] but sink in to it's travel more on technical climbs. On the way down it should soak up square edge hits smoother and sink deeper in to it's travel especially on seated g outs and drops.

    Note your only getting 10 mm more travel with the Tx29er over the Ax29er but they should ride quite differently.
    Could you elaborate on this, esp. leverage ratio difference between AX29 and TX29?

    I try to decide between AX29 and TX29. As much as I want a 29er FS that "bombs a stair case like it isn't even there", I want it to "practically pedal itself uphills" too . But, being on the heavy side (~300 lbs), I am mostly concerned about not being able to set sag properly without exceeding maximum shock PSI. What bicycle of the two would be more preferable for me in this respect?

    Also, with respect to static load capacity (PSI vs spring rate) of the shock should I look for RockShox or Fox if there is a choice?
    Last edited by standa11; 01-23-2013 at 08:28 AM.

  94. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by akaBrowntown View Post
    Was not expecting the AX29 to be so different or for me to like it so much. I wasnt running out of steam nearly as easy and was also riding faster and doing more technical trails. Wasnt expecting it to be so willing to climb either. Looking forward to renting a TX29 on sunday (they do have them, the other employee was mistaken).

    After the first couple miles I was trying to convince myself that the 26" trance I had rented was setup wrong, but after the first trail I was grinning for the rest of the ride. The new bike will definitely have big wheels.
    So did you get to try the Trance? If so, what was the verdict?

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    No, I think the guy was getting the small AX29er confused with the trance, as the smalls have the bent top tube. I ended up riding an AX29 again, this time on a large however (medium before). I really do like the Anthem, and man do I love climbing on it.

    I rode the Trance 29er around the parking lot when I got back, and ended up ordering a TX29er 2. The AX29er 4 and Tx29er 2 are the same price, and are the highest I was willing to spend.

    The reasons for this was:
    1. I really enjoy downhills and jumps/drops, the slacker head tube and extra travel helped this choice. I did some of this on the Anthem and it felt fine though, but I can imagine myself getting into bigger stuff soon.
    2. When I rented the medium AX29 it had a SRAM 2x10 setup. I liked this alot as well, and more so than the 3x10 on the large AX. The TX 2 comes with a similar 2x10, and the 4 comes with Shimano 3x10. Also the shifters are SRAM on the Trance and Shimano on the Anthem, and im used to the SRAM stuff.
    3. I am not crazy about the blue that comes on the lowest Anthem, and really like the black/grey/yellow on the lowest Trance.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GT5050 View Post
    Probably a bit far from you - South FL. The time it took to drive and gas would eat up the savings...
    Where in south Florida?? I live here and want to purchase an Anthem. For an X1 that seems like a deal.

    Also I'm 5'11. And suggestions in going medium or large frame. I currently ride a talon large frame, and have ridden a medium frame 26 in the past.

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    Sent you a PM. As far as height, I'll speak from my experience as you seem to be on the cusp of medium and large frames. I'm 5'8", and while many would suggest a small Anthem 29er for me, the one I rented was a Medium and fit like a glove. It's not exactly your situation, but similar dilemma I suppose. Bottom line though is try them both, I tried a small briefly too and it wasn't for me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GT5050 View Post
    I would think this is on the lower end of pricing, but shop near me has Trance X 29er 1 for $2399 and Anthem X 29er 1 for $2499.
    Could you please send me the information on this bike shop? Thanks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by GT5050 View Post
    I would think this is on the lower end of pricing, but shop near me has Trance X 29er 1 for $2399 and Anthem X 29er 1 for $2499.
    Pm sent. I need the info too, thanks

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    Test rode both this weekend. Both were a lot of fun. For me, slight edge goes to the trance because its a more plush suspension without really giving up anything. The geo was right on for handling the tight stuff. Large felt like all of the other larges I've ridden. I don't know where all this "runs big " stuff comes from. Anthem had slightly better climbing/pedaling when you really get into it but at the expense of some comfort.

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