Hope Race Evo X2 VS Sram Guide Ultimate VS Shimano Saint VS Shimano XTR VS Shimano XT- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Hope Race Evo X2 VS Sram Guide Ultimate VS Shimano Saint VS Shimano XTR VS Shimano XT

    My Avid X0 Brakes have frustrated me to the point where it is time to replace them. I have a custom build Carbon Beargrease weighing in at around 23.5 lbs (so I am a little weight conscious). I am trying to decide between the following brakes to replace the X0s:

    Hope Race Evo X2
    Sram Guide Ultimate
    Shimano Saint
    Shimano XTR Trail
    Shimano XT Trail

    -I have a great appreciation for modulation-- so it's a deal breaker if the brakes are weak in that category.

    -I am leaning towards shimano due to their use of mineral oil, and its ability to resist moisture buildup in the lines.

    -I am intrigued by all of the positive things I have read about the 4 piston design in the Shimano Saints.

    Please weigh in with any advice or recommendations that you might have. Thank you in advance, Fat Bike Community!!!

  2. #2
    All fat, all the time.
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    If you are concerned about weight, why are the saint in there?
    Hope x2 modulate great but are likely not as powerful as some of the rest.

  3. #3
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    Well, my shimano M785s had zero modulation at -14, will be on BB7s with love levers this winter

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shark View Post
    If you are concerned about weight, why are the saint in there?
    Hope x2 modulate great but are likely not as powerful as some of the rest.
    Shark, thanks for your response. All that I know about the Saint's weight is what I read on Shimano's site. It has them listed as being lighter than the XTRs. I was surprised at that-- but now I am thinking that it must be an error. Does anyone know? See chart in the attached screen grab from Shimano's site:

    Hope Race Evo X2 VS Sram Guide Ultimate VS Shimano Saint VS Shimano XTR VS Shimano XT-screen-shot-2015-09-08-12.15.56-am.jpg

  5. #5
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    Just go with the Shimano that best suits your needs, unless, as noted above, you plan on spending a majority of time at temps well below 0 F. They will still work, but will start to feel a bit funny. Ran mine at -5 or so several times, got the job done. Doing it all the time, and getting colder than that? Yeah, mechs for winter then...
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  6. #6
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    I ride a fat bike year round and found the Hope X2s were not powerful enough for the combination of my weight and the hills where I live.

    I frequently get over 30mph and at the bottom of the hill they would start to fade. Stopping from 15 mph was no problem.

    In the end I swapped out the Hope X2s for Hope E4 Race which cope much better with the bigger hills and don't weigh that much more.

    If you are a light person, brake fade might not be a problem. But if you are a big chap, it is something you want to avoid.

  7. #7
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    I run hope M4 front (203mm rotor) and X2 rear (160mm rotor) and love the combo. They are a very nice brake, and I have shimano and BB7's also. If I had the cash, I would have hopes on all my bikes.

    Also, don't go with BB7's, get your hands on the TRP brakes. They are much better than stupid BB7 sh!t.

  8. #8
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    Well I have a set of XTR and Saints right here. I can surely say the Saints are heavier in my hands. I am having Guide Ultimate installed tomorrow. I chose these because my mechanic, who I trust, said the modulation on them is excellent. He literally said you can be riding gravel and not lock the wheels. Where we ride there is a lot of small rock fast twisty downhills where my XTs lock easily. In addition, the Ultimates are 4 piston.

  9. #9
    All fat, all the time.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bbtylrv View Post
    Shark, thanks for your response. All that I know about the Saint's weight is what I read on Shimano's site. It has them listed as being lighter than the XTRs. I was surprised at that-- but now I am thinking that it must be an error. Does anyone know? See chart in the attached screen grab from Shimano's site:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I always assumed the saint were heavy as they are the DH brake of choice for many...I could very well be wrong though. I honestly don't follow shimano brake stuff too much, they've always felt too on/off for me. I rented a bike last weekend that had SLX's on it....didn't like the modulation.
    perhaps the hope modulation has me spoiled though.

    I run Hope M4 front with a 203 floating rotor, and an X2 rear with a 183 floating rotor. happy with the performance, 1 finger breaking all day long.

  10. #10
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    I have Hope Race Evo x2 on my ASR. I love them, way better than XTR and XT I use on my other bikes.

    The power is about the same as the XTR. No fade or noise.
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  11. #11
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    I have Hope X2 on 3 of my bikes, but don't have any experience with the others. As you can tell, with 3 bikes running Hope brakes, I must not like them! Haven't had problems with fade regardless of the hill steepness/speed. I'm 170lb, but just came down a 3000ft hill today with bikepacking gear. One of the bikes I run them on is my fatbike. I've used them down to 0F., maybe a bit lower. They start to loose their feel, but still work.

  12. #12
    Elitest thrill junkie
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stopbreakindown View Post
    Well, my shimano M785s had zero modulation at -14, will be on BB7s with love levers this winter
    Yes, but at -15F my left shimano XTR and right Avid Elixir (DOT fluid) were pretty much the same. Both with little modulation and very "stiff". Both worked equally well in the temps, but I wouldn't want to take it further. I'm not sure what the Avids come with, but you could probably shop around for better fluid and rebleed I guess. The Shimano mineral oil is not the same as Magura, which gives up at a warmer temp.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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  13. #13
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    And I've had sets of hope brakes before. Their feeling is very "crisp", similar to shimano. Magura in my experience (although it's been a few years) can be more of that "softer-lever" (not inferring that the brakes are weak) that might be interpreted as "more modulation".
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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  14. #14
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    Yep - that was exactly my take on the "trusted mechanic" advice above.
    You want modulation, don't pull as hard, need more than use a smaller rotor.
    I'll stick with Shimano.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gambit21 View Post
    You want modulation, don't pull as hard, need more than use a smaller rotor.
    Some people don't understand modulation...its ok to be one of them.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by jonshonda View Post
    Some people don't understand modulation...its ok to be one of them.
    Yes indeed - and it's Ok to be very ironically one of those people.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gambit21 View Post
    Yep - that was exactly my take on the "trusted mechanic" advice above.
    You want modulation, don't pull as hard, need more than use a smaller rotor.
    I'll stick with Shimano.
    You get better modulation with bigger rotors.

  18. #18
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    nevermind - two different points being made here.

    A smaller rotor requires more force as there's less mechanical advantage. Thus you can duplicate the "less likely to lock up" phenenon mentioned above.

  19. #19
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    I run Guides on my fat tandem and my Atlas, the rest of my bikes and munis run TRP Spyke mechanicals.

    You all "think" you know modulation, but no wheeled vehicle needs modulation more than a muni where a lack of sensitivity in a brake will dump you on your nose.

    My fav hydraulics are the Shimano M series and the SRAM Guides, both work well for modulation, though I prefer the guide for the highly adjustable lever position.

    If you need cold weather performance AND modulation, I'd run BB7 or Spykes with Speed Dial levers. The levers allow you to adjust throw, yet another way of improving modulation.

    If you need power, mechanicals are not generally the first choice because the cable stretch makes them a bit spongy and hard to adjust without getting rotor rub.

    I run Spykes on my Mutz, I ride it pretty fast on some tough terrain, they work fine, though when I spend a day at the park I end having to adjust the pads a couple times.

    I'd get Guides, skip to the mid range "R" series, the extra dial function on the ultimates is practically useless.

    If it gets really cold where you live and hydraulics have issues, then get Spykes or BB7.

    Big rotors are not the answer to anything, the difference in dissipating heat or increasing braking are insignificant, the only thing that big rotors will do for you is pull your front wheel to the side and increase the likelihood of pad rubbing.

  20. #20
    Rippin da fAt
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    Ben, I have to have the training wheel in front of me!

    You could not get me to swap my EVO2 Race brakes for something else on my fatty. Having towing package brakes is a must, for me... Sure is nice not to have to reef on a brake lever to get brakes to work.

    I am using 160's and have enough holding power to get trialsy. Stopping power and modulation is programmed into the pcm. I had to get used to the small modulation window with the Hopes, but must say, the performance is stellar.
    Get fAt, Stay fAt, Ride fAt
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  21. #21
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    I have 2015 Shimano Saints on my Enduro bike. They work great but the modulation isn't the best. I went Saint over XT/XTR because I weigh 250 and spend a lot of time on chairlifts riding downhill.

    If I wasn't riding DH all the time Id so XT or XTR if your budget allows. The 2016 XT stuff is amazing and would be my choice if I was buying new brakes for a XC / Trail bike

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