I've had my latest bike for 2 years now and it came with SRAM Red groupset and SRAM S40 wheels. I have found the SRAM product to very good and have had no trouble in using or maintaining the various components. I have noticed that when someone posts on this site for advice re which wheels or groupset to go with that SRAM rarely gets a mention. I haven't had much experience with the other brands at an equivalent level but am interested in why SRAM doesn't get recommended all that often. I'd be interested to hear people's thoughts as I'm getting a bit paranoid! I don't intend to start a discussion about which is best but does SRAM stack up against the other brands?
I will suggest there is nothing wrong with SRAM however they are in an awkward position from a marketing point of view.
People who want the best/ most expensive/ best snob value buy Campagnolio.
Shimano is the market leader buy volume and very well knowen.
People who want the cheapest buy some obscure Chinese brand made from plastic and tinfoil.
So what market niche does SRAM represent?
From what I have seen SRAM seems to be reasonable value but why would people choose SRAM over Campagnolio or Shimano?
From a sales point of view how does a sales person convince a buyer that SRAM is best for them?
Thing is, campags quality has faded and a lot of people have become disgruntled with shimano.
The old release a new product that you need to buy a new tool for formula has annoyed many a customer.
Of course, there are always loyalists.
Sram products are very good quality and they sponsor many events.
Very popular among mountain bikers.
One thing that really bugs me about Shimano is their lack of replacement parts for older components. Try getting a replacement 8 speed 105 rear derailleur or lever hoods for older STI shifters. OK, they maybe around 5 years or more old now but there's many a bike around with this equipment that are perfectly good and don't need upgrading to the latest 9 or 10 speed components or worse still, binned for lack of basic replacement parts.
Still, remains to be seen if SRAM follows the same path.
ebay is your friend
Not there either and consumers shouldn't need to rely on ebay for service from a major brand who supplies around half the world's bike major componentry.
had exactly this problem with a shimano 105 8x2 - shifters disintegrated after 15 years of (ab)use, and had to get 2300s flown in from ullawoopwoop, or upgrade to 9 or 10. If it came down to that, I was going to go down the SRAM red option, as mechanically speaking they seem to have a better construction, fewer moving parts to disintegrate...
Park Tools make a tool for the Campy 11 speed chain now. 1/3 the cost and works alot better as well.
Interesting enough - I believe Noel's latest bike is Di2 - and as much as I love SRAM - if I had the money, I would be tempted to try Di2 next time, unless of course SRAM develop electronic shifting
Noel did tell me he had Di2's on his latest ride. I didn't get into depth about the bike he has. But for the money you can spend on Di2 you could easily pay for another decent road bike. I spose running your own bike business has its perks.
Many years ago I studied music at Adelaide Uni (SACAE it was then).
I recall the trumpet players seemed to spend hours sitting in the cafe discussing mouthpieces. Not trumpets mind you - just the different mouthpieces. Hours and hours every day!
Funny how things change and yet stay the same!